Published Friday, August 12, 2011 AT 1:20 AM / Updated at 1:55 AM
Dirk’s brunch bites — Aug. 12
Dirk Chatelain Omaha World-Herald

A scene from Big 12 Media Days 2012 …

Dan Beebe bursts through the doors of an Austin hotel ballroom. His arms pump as Bonnie Tyler’s “I Need a Hero” echoes over the speakers, drowning out a smattering of applause. After one lap, then two, the Commish settles behind the podium. The music stops and so begins his annual preseason address.

“Thank you. Thank you. It’s a pleasure to be with you today.

“Recently, I organized a retreat with the Big 12 athletic directors. We ate fajitas. Drank Shiner Bock. Played that game of trust, you know, where one guy falls backward and another guy has to catch him. DeLoss Dodds kept letting people drop to the ground. Such a prankster. We got him back, though. A bucket of warm water as he was sleeping.

“Anyway, I felt like that weekend really pulled everyone together and set the tone for the future of this league. You guys from Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri and Iowa State, I hope you can make it next year.

“As I survey the landscape, there’s no doubt we’re more unified than ever. And I really like the idea of nine schools. Some of the great conferences in America have nine. The Ohio Valley. The Southland. The Mountain West — before BYU left. So we’re proud to be part of that tradition.

“Anyway, we’re really excited for a new season. I’ll take a few questions now.”

Q: Where do you feel like the departure of A&M will hurt you most?

“Well, we’re not here to talk about former members. But I will tell you that Texas A&M didn’t actually contribute much. And Bill Byrne never liked the Big 12 in the first place.

“The league is leaner and meaner now. Remember, we still have several national powerhouses. Texas. And Oklahoma. And, of course, Texas.

“Most of all, we’re much more geographically cohesive now. You know, College Station was a long way from places like Columbia and Ames.”

Q: Are you still looking into the controversy from last season?

“What controversy?”

Q: You know, where A&M got penalized 27 times against Kansas State?

“No, no. We’ve put that issue behind us.”

Q: Do you still think it was the right decision to suspend the A&M quarterback for waving to his grandma?

“Our officials perceived that act as a clear violation of new NCAA celebration rules. Frankly, we had no choice.”

Q: Looking back, do you wish you would’ve presented A&M with the Big 12 trophy on Thanksgiving night. They did clinch the Big 12.

“Obviously, a lot of things have happened since then. I still feel like we did the right thing. People forget, The Longhorn Network wanted to do a postgame show from the sidelines that night. We were obligated to give the trophy to Texas.”

Q: Obligated?

“Yes, contractually.”

Q: Even though Texas went 6-6?

“That’s right. But to all the Aggie fans who called my house asking for the trophy, I can assure you that we shipped it on Feb. 24. We even paid for the extra Bubble Wrap. $39.72. We have the receipt to prove it. I don’t know what else to say on the matter. It’s not our fault that FedEx lost your trophy.”

Q: But according to an anonymous janitor who works in the Texas football offices, the trophy is on a shelf in …

“I won’t comment on rumors. Next question, please.”

Q: Dan, did it bother you that Texas pulled the cord on Mack after all he’d accomplished there? What does that say about the pressure for coaches to win these days?

“From what I’m told, it was more of a ratings issue. We all loved Mack, but ESPN wanted a younger, more dynamic character for that role.

“Actually, this is a wonderful time to recognize him. Coach Gruden, can you stand up? Jon? Oh, Jon’s doing an interview. I forgot. The Longhorn Network is filming ‘Tuesday in the life of Texas football.’ Can’t wait to watch it. I just loooooved ‘Monday in the life of Texas football.’ ”

Q: Bob Stoops and Gary Pinkel have expressed concern about Gruden working for The Longhorn Network during its Friday high-school coverage — he will obviously be commenting on recruits — then turning around on Saturday and coaching for Texas. Do you share their concern?

“I don’t think it’s a big deal. Knowing Jon, he’ll have plenty of energy to do both jobs at a high level. I just hope he finds time to get some sleep!”

Q: Without A&M in the mix, what are your plans for that Thanksgiving night time slot this year?

“Well, we’re really excited about moving Texas Tech-Missouri to that night. For years, I’ve felt like that rivalry didn’t receive near enough attention. We finally have the opportunity to shine the spotlight on it. According to everyone I’ve talked to, the change ended up being a positive.

“Gov. Nixon is actually here today with the Mizzou contingent. Jay, stand up and be recognized! Oh, Jay’s on the phone. Sorry. Who is he talking to? Mike Slive? They’ve been talking a lot lately. Huh. Must be college friends.”

Q: Is there any truth to the report that Iowa State has engaged in discussions with the MAC about conference membership?

“At the spring meetings, I had a very frank conversation with our presidents about where we’re going and who’s going to be on the plane when we take off. Everyone pinky swore not to leave.”

Q: But an Iowa website this morning said the deal is done. The Cyclones wanted more stability.

“Well, Chip Brown tells me there’s no chance. None. And he has tremendous sources in my office.”

Q: So why isn’t anybody from Iowa State here today?

(The Commish pauses. Pulls his BlackBerry from his pocket. Checks his one new e-mail: “ is exclusively reporting that Iowa State will leave the Big 12 Conference, unless they don’t.” Beebe turns to the audience.)

“As I said earlier, we’re more unified than ever. But I’ve always liked the idea of an eight-team conference.”

About Dirk Chatelain

Dirk Chatelain is a staff writer for The Omaha World-Herald and covers Nebraska football and general assignments. You can follow Dirk on Twitter (@dirkchatelain) or email him at


  1. was this really supposed to be published?

    1. Chippy Brown says:

      Let me guess, MELVIN, you don’t get it?. . its above your sub level of intellectual grasp. . .. why don’t you just not read Dirk’s column, clearly, his words are lost on an imbecile like you. Sorry

    2. Danny says:

      This was written for the Big Red Blog, not sure if it runs in the paper edition. Can someone help me with that, please? Either way, the tone was clear from the beginning.

      1. Brian Norton Brian Norton says:

        Danny, I don’t believe we plan on running this paper. It is an online exclusive. I do agree that the tone was clear from the beginning.

        Melvin, yes it was supposed to be published.

    3. Jim R. says:

      Yeah, Melvin, it was supposed to be published. How do you like those apples?

  2. Jake says:

    this was WONDERFUL.

  3. says:

    Did you tap their phones and hack Beebe’s I-phone for all this info? Your amazing!! Keep it up, I just might stop stealing my neighbors paper and actually get my own sub.

    Good STUFF

  4. Richard says:

    Sheesh. Give a rest already. It’s over and done with.

    What’s with this juvenile preoccupation with our former conference?

    1. says:

      It’s called “filler”……You read it, job done!

    2. Donigan says:

      It’s done for Nebraska, but it’s still going on for the others of the Big 12. A&M is looking at the SEC, and I would imagine OU will not take kindly to playing 2nd fiddle to Texas for too long.

    3. Dotbo says:

      What’s juvenile about following 18 year old kids and watching the football games and selling out stadiums to watch them and buying extended tier cable subscriptions and wearing their number when you go to the game and reading all the stuff online that you can and making fun of enemies made along the way?!?!?!?!?

      What are you, an arrogant Texas fan!?!?!?

  5. Russ says:

    Holy Hell this was funny. Great read!

  6. Stuart jenkins says:

    Texas team colors Orange and Green. How long will the Sooners sit around watching this train wreak?

  7. Ken says:

    Was that an Iowa website or an Iowa State website? Great article. I loved it and have sent it to several friends who live in Texas.

  8. Husker Dude says:

    Funny stuff… Beebe is clueless.

  9. OKHUSKER says:

    Without a doubt one of the best sarcastic, “we told you so”, humor filled , slap in the face to what will now be the former Big XII, articles I have ever read. Thank you. It’s amazing how message boards last year were chalked full of hatred for NU and how we were single handedly ruining a conference. Crow doesn’t taste all that great does it? Living in OK and reading about the demise of the conference has been so entertaining and only made me respect Dr. Tom even more for his insight.

    1. Mark says:

      I agree OKHusker…uprooted from North Platte to OKC since 1993. Still bleed Husker Red. I love watching the likes of Berry Tramel and Jenni Carlson along with most of the Sooner fan base eat crow on this one.

  10. HuskerfanX5 says:

    This was freaking hilarious… and will be true before to long…

  11. Asten says:

    Brilliant, Dirk. Brilliant! I am amused by those that can’t enjoy a joke. Even if it’s got more than a hint of truth to it.

  12. BretTheGreat says:

    This was great ! I just cant wait for it to become reality !

  13. CheezHead Husker says:

    I can’t help but wonder who Delany is talking to while all this is going on? He is the most powerful man in College sports and seems to be 2 moves ahead.

  14. David says:


  15. Travis says:

    This is Awesome!

  16. Bubba says:

    Dirk… this is really quite funny.

  17. JD the AD says:

    Oh my God this was brilliantly funny! Dirk – you outdid yourself with this! The only thing that outshines it is the truth that all of this will be a reality…

  18. will norton jr. says:

    Week after week, Dirk Chatelain write it like it is. Thank goodness for a mentally tough and skilled reporter who knows how to write. He obviously had great professors in college.

    1. Dirk Chatelain Dirk Chatelain says:

      Not sure about the professors, but the Dean was brilliant!….Thanks for the commentary, guys. It was fun to write this one. What a fascinating story. Can’t wait to see which domino falls next. Oklahoma/Ok State to Pac-12? Missouri to Big Ten? Virginia Tech to SEC? Hard to say at this point.

  19. Brett from Ames says:

    And what part of Nebraska football is this covering ?

  20. HuskerNLawrence says:

    Loved it! If only you would have had Bevo jumping around behind Dan while he was doing the interview with the Texas fight song playing softly in the background. It is soooooooo good to be in the B1G.

  21. Jim R. says:

    It’s nice to watch Beebe being handed his hat… and shown to the door. The funny part… the idiot has figured it out yet.

  22. Sioux City Doug says:

    Thanks Dirk, this was great. Even Bo will smile when he reads it.

    1. Good Call says:

      Nice. Even Bo will laugh. That’s a good one.

  23. Johnny_Nebraska says:


  24. HuskerBadger says:

    Everyone realizes that the A&M situation is the perfect smokescreen for OU to also bolt from the Big 1 Little 9.