Pac-10 will change name to Pac-12

Published: Thursday, July 29, 2010 10:00 a.m. MDT
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NEW YORK — For years people in the Pac-10 — from players to fans — have complained about a lack of recognition and a so-called East Coast bias that caused the conference to be under-appreciated nationally.

Commissioner Larry Scott, who grew up in New York on Long Island, decided that instead of complaining it was time for the league to do something about it.

Say goodbye to the old Pac-10. The league has a new logo, a new more aggressive attitude and two new members scheduled to arrive in 2011. And when Colorado and Utah officially join, the conference will also have a new name.

The Pac-12 is on its way.

"We will be mathematically correct going forward," Scott said Monday at a news conference at a Manhattan hotel.

Scott brought all his football coaches and a few of his star quarterbacks — including Washington's Jake Locker and Stanford's Andrew Luck — to the Big Apple for a couple of days to draw a some more attention to a conference that has been making plenty of headlines this offseason.

In June, Scott nearly turned the Pac-10 into the Pac-16 — and in the process nearly killed the Big 12.

But Texas, Oklahoma and three other Big 12 teams decided to stay put and Scott had to settle for adding Colorado and Utah.

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It was a bold move by a conference known for being anything but. Scott, about to start his second season as commissioner, says he received a mandate from the university presidents he works for to remake the league and he's embraced that task.

"I spent my first three months kind of listening," he said. "The common refrain I kept hearing was everyone recognized the excellence of the Pac-10 here on the West Coast but we don't feel we get the respect we deserve nationally.

"It seemed to be a bit of an excuse and that the Pac-10 in my estimation was very laid back and passive in terms of how it went about telling its story and promoting itself," he said.

"To me the disconnect was people worried about that but they were not really doing much about it."

The Pac-10 has been holding its football preseason media event at an airport hotel in Los Angeles for years. The one-day event drew little attention west of Arizona, especially in comparison to the multiple-day media circuses run by other power conferences such as the Southeastern Conference, Big Ten and Big 12.

Scott attended his first Pac-10 football media day last year and was less than impressed.

"This can't be how we're promoting ourselves," he said was his reaction.

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