By STEVEN VAUGHAN, 750 THE GAME
The Pac-12 is all but gone.
It hasn’t even been a week since the conference dissolved with the 2024 exits of Oregon and Washington to the Big Ten and Utah, Arizona, and Arizona State headed to the Big 12, following Colorado.
Washington State is one of the four schools left in the conference, along with Oregon State, Cal, and Stanford.
Pat Chun, WSU athletic director, joined John Canzano on 750 The Game Wednesday afternoon and cited the lack of conference leadership over many years as a primary contributor the the present situation.
“This is really a failure of leadership on many levels, not just on one person’s shoulders but many people’s shoulders,” Chun told Canzano. “Where we’re at today, you probably thought it was unfathomable years ago, but it’s the reality of this environment of college athletics. And now Washington State and some other schools in the Pac-12 have to work to figure out the next step.”
Friday morning it really seemed as if the Pac-12 was going to stay together. Numerous reports from respected news breakers said that Oregon and Washington were leaning toward staying in the conference.
Canzano asked Chun what happened Friday morning that led to the Ducks and Huskies leaving the conference and the affect it had.
“Whatever happened between that Thursday evening and Friday morning transformed college athletics and west coast sports as we know it,” Chun said. “Both of those schools (Oregon and Washington) electing to leave was essentially the end of the Pac-12.”
Who’s to blame? Is it the Ducks? Is it the Huskies? Chun says he knows that Cougars fans blame Washington, but they shouldn’t be the only ones to blame.
“I know Cougs (fans) do,” said Chun. “And I believe those are appropriate emotions, but they need to be expanded. This is a totality of a failed leadership and a flawed vision. Failed implementation. Then you fast forward it. This league has been grossly mismanaged for well over a decade and you just can’t operate anymore. That led to dissention and acrimony and ultimately dissolution of the conference.”
A documentary about the fall of the Pac-12 seems inevitable some day. I would love to see it. But for now, we wonder: What’s next for the Pac-4?
Catch the full interview with Washington State athletic director, Pat Chun, by clicking the podcast below. Catch the Bald Faced Truth with John Canzano weekdays 3-6 p.m. exclusively in Portland on 750 The Game.