- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 5, 2011

BIRMINGHAM, ALA. (AP) - SEC athletic directors and Commissioner Mike Slive met Wednesday to discuss the logistics of Texas A&M’s entry as the 13th member even though No. 14 might soon be on its way.

The meeting comes a day after University of Missouri curators voted unanimously to consider leaving the Big 12 _ likely to join the Southeastern Conference _ instead of committing to the league for the long term. However, SEC spokesman Charles Bloom said the AD meeting at league headquarters was scheduled several weeks ago.

“The focus of the meeting is the integration of Texas A&M into the Southeastern Conference,” Bloom said, adding that the majority of the day would be spent discussing scheduling with 13 teams.

Other athletic department staffers and the transition team formed after Texas A&M’s admission into the league also participated in the meeting in a conference room in the downtown Birmingham offices that was still ongoing Wednesday afternoon.

Slive has said he would prepare to go into next year as if there will be 13 teams, which would create unbalanced divisions. As for adding a 14th, he has emphasized that the SEC would be “strategic and thoughtful” in expansion, but shed little light otherwise on the league’s plans.

SEC school administrators have indicated that adding a 14th school is likely, perhaps imminent.

South Carolina President Harris Pastides has said he doesn’t “think 13 is a sustainable number, but I think 14 is.” He added that he doesn’t advocate growing to a 16-team league.

Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart has said the SEC will expand again but that members need to be deliberate in taking that next step.

The vote by Missouri curators makes the Tigers a leading contender.

The Big 12 said Monday that presidents and chancellors of the remaining nine members _ including Missouri Chancellor Brady Deaton _ have agreed to equal revenue sharing and to seek approval from each university to hand over the most lucrative television rights to the conference for six years.



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