Division I conference expansion excites Dudchock

Recent Oak Mountain High School graduate Davis Dudchock pretty much knew he would spend his Saturdays traveling up and down the West Coast when he signed a football scholarship with Stanford University.

Dudchock expected trips to places like Tempe, Ariz., and Los Angeles, Calif., to face Pac-10 Conference foes Arizona State University and UCLA. He can now add a trip to Boulder, Colo., to face the University of Colorado, following an announcement by the university June 10 that it is leaving the Big 12 Conference to join the Pac-10.

Dudchock could also add visits to Austin, Texas, and Norman, Okla., to face national powers Texas and Oklahoma if fellow Big 12 Conference members elect to head west to join the Pac-10. Five additional Big 12 members are considering joining the Pac-10 in the coming days, according to a report by Orangebloods.com.

The future Stanford Cardinal is excited about the major conference expansion.

“It would be a great opportunity to play teams like Texas and Oklahoma,” said Dudchock, who will leave Thursday, June 17 for Palo Alto, Calif. “It would really expand the market. I think it’s exciting.”

Dudchock, who signed a football scholarship with Stanford in February, said the newly expanded Pac-10 is likely to consist of 16 teams in two divisions. Current members California, Oregon, Oregon State, Stanford, USC, UCLA, Washington and Washington State will make up one division, while Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech will make up the other division.

Dudchock said the format will allow the Pac-10 to hold a conference championship game in football, which is another plus of conference expansion in his mind.

“Even if it’s all about the money, it’s still a good idea,” Dudchock said. “It’s a great opportunity. I think it would be cool.”