'Pac-2' schools Oregon State and Wazzu can help rebuild Pac-12

2023 Pac-12 Championship - Oregon v Washington
2023 Pac-12 Championship - Oregon v Washington / Ric Tapia/GettyImages

Oregon State and Wazzu, known affectionately at this point as the "Pac-2," could help rebuild the Pac-12 conference "in some manner" according to West Coast Conference commissioner Stu Jackson -- with joining an existing conference also on the table for the two programs.

"There hasn't been a discussion beyond that and the reason is Oregon State and Washington State entered this affiliation agreement, because they needed to buy themselves some time," Jackson said during an appearance on special episode of Talking Zags (h/t Gonzaga Nation). "And that's legitimate. They have a scheduling football alliance [with the Mountain West Conference] that you know, they'll have in the next couple of years, and in that two year period, they'll attempt I think, to do two things. One is to try to become a member of an existing conference that will take them with football. Or they'll attempt to reconfigure the Pac-12 in some manner. If they accomplish that, so be it."

Jackson's own conference is one he knows can be at risk of losing its top program during the next round of realignment.

Stu Jackson acknowledges that Gonzaga can be poached from WCC

Jackson admitted that his own conference is one that's susceptible to conference realignment, acknowledging that Gonzaga basketball is a program that other conferences -- like the expansion-hungry Big 12 -- could pursue.

"I think you have to deal with it, you know, in the moment ... [The Bulldogs are] a member of the WCC from all indications just dealing with them over the past few years," Jackson said. "Their focus is the WCC and helping us to become stronger, you know, financially stable, but listen, you know, we're in a national landscape. In large part due to football realignment, where there's going to be a shuffle that, you know, we've seen it over the past seven months, it's going to continue and, you know, a school like Gonzaga, who's our member, I'm not surprised that other conferences would be interested in them or other members of our conference. It's just something you have to deal with in the moment."

Changes to college sports are a yearly occurrence at this point. It's not shocking to see a program like Gonzaga rumored to be on the move next given its success and the lack of competition the WCC offers.