The Big 12 has always considered themselves a legitimate contender in the national scale and viewed themselves as strongly of a conference as the SEC. Especially around 10 years ago when it seemed like a Big 12 team was routinely going to a BCS Championship game.
From 2000 to 2005, five BCS National Championship games had Big 12 teams in them. That might not be the case anymore after conference realignment but the Big 12 is crawling back into the discussion. In an effort to bolster their conference, the Big 12 has 3 postseason games with SEC teams.
“Our new bowl lineup meets all the benchmarks our member institutions desired,” Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby said. “We have maintained a strong postseason presence in Texas, added a Florida destination, continued our exposure in the West, and added a drivable destination.”
The lineup (via ESPN Dallas):
• Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, Texas, vs. Pac-12 opponent.
• Russell Athletic Bowl in Orlando, Fla., vs. Atlantic Coast Conference opponent.
• Texas Bowl in Houston vs. Southeastern Conference opponent.
• Liberty Bowl in Memphis, Tenn., vs. SEC opponent.
• Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl in Tempe, Ariz., vs. Pac-12 opponent.
• Heart of Dallas Bowl vs. Conference USA opponent or Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth vs. American Athletic Conference opponent.
The Big 12 Champion will also play against an SEC team in the Sugar Bowl. The two conferences signed a 12 year partnership with the BCS bowl game. If one or both champions make it into the new College Football Playoff, and there is a good chance at least one will, the other top league teams would be selected for the game in the Superdome.
All the new deals start next year and coincide with the launch of the new playoff system.