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In October 1975, Bob Dylan went out on tour with a random, growing, changing bunch of musicians. The show was called the Rolling Thunder Revue, and the bootlegs, both unofficial and official, are incredible. There's energy in the air, there's uncertainty, there's Bob Dylan with his marriage crumbling, there's tension ... it's unbelievable. The tour lasted about six weeks, played in mostly small(ish) venues and spawned an entertaining book (the most humblebrag book of all-time) and countless aforementioned bootlegs. A couple of months later, with his marriage and personal life still crumbling, he got the band back together and went out on the road again. It looked similar and by all means should have been just as good, but it wasn't. The energy and chemistry were gone. Dylan learned that you can't just recreate energy and buzz just because you want to. (He solved this problem in later years, of course, by never actually ending a tour.)

We've officially entered the "second tour" portion of MIZZOUEXPANSIONAPALOOZA™.

Below I'm including a link of every legitimate, well-sourced article I've found regarding SEC, Pac-16, etc., rumors:




And that's it. I enjoy the way most of Rock M Nation has stayed cool to the fanaticism other sites are showing about these new "rumors" that aren't really rumors at all. I encourage you to keep it up because I see nothing even remotely realistic in the rumors this time around. (Here's a hint: if every school in a conference has been "secretly in talks" with six different conferences, you're probably reading a b.s. rumor.) The sentiments are, for the most part, more positive toward Missouri, and that's great. And I would by all means immediately react if there were something real to them. Let's face it: I live for this s***. The moment something real emerges, I'm all over it: What's next? Who goes where? Projections, future rivalries, the whole nine yards. And I've almost been tempted to do it anyway, simply because the thought of being part of a new SEC West (or Name Your New Division Here) is hilariously intimidating and fun. But I don't want to feed into the thought that this is in any way currently legitimate.

Make no mistake: the Big 12 is not stable. And at some point, a Big 12 team and another conference will legitimately be linked -- maybe even A&M to the SEC (though if you think the Texas legislature would allow them to leave with ease, with no fights for the other Texas schools, you're crazy; and if you think Texas would just sit back and allow other schools to leverage the current uncertainty to their own advantage, then you learned nothing from the first go-round of MIZZOUEXPANSIONAPALOOZA™). And when this happens, the free-for-all begins. This is not a conference built for longevity, and whether the legitimate rumors begin tomorrow or in 2017, they'll almost certainly begin at some point. But they haven't yet, and we can't force it to happen by passing along mostly unsourced rumors.

I'll admit I'm wrong if I end up wrong. But right now, where there's smoke ... there's some dude trying to start a fire so he can say "Where there's smoke, there's fire!"

It's just not the same the second time around.