As the Big 12 (Minus 2) football season nears, uncertainty hangs over the embattled conference. Texas A&M just can’t live with the deal Texas orchestrated to “save” this conference.

That school's exclusive ESPN contract -- and the potential for televising high school games under the Longhorn imprint -- has stuck in the craw of school admininstrators and boosters.

The Aggies are once again flirting with the SEC. With retired coach Gene Stallings driving the getaway bus, they want to escape the shadow of their bitter rivals.

That school appears to be targeting 2013 to make the switch – but change could come sooner.

And as Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com writes, “If the SEC were to balance things out at 14 teams (for now), Missouri would be an obvious candidate. That would given the Aggies two travel partners in a league that would stretch from South Carolina to Houston.”

Mizzou is equally vexed with the Texas deal, which made the other nine schools in the Big 12 (Minus 2) chattels of the Longhorns. After getting jilted at the altar by the Big Ten, MU would very much like to settle its long-term future.

A move to the SEC would create lots of heavy lifting for the football program, but Gary Pinkel has positioned the program to take a big step.

The biggest drawback would be severing ties with Kansas, unless the SEC went into superconference mode and raided the Big 12 (Minus 2) for multiple teams.

BASHING DONOVAN MCNABB

Former NFL star Bill Romanowski told radio host Jim Rome that Donovan McNabb has only himself to blame for his Washington falure.

“The reason why Donovan McNabb is not in Washington right now is because he was lazy,” Romanowski said. “He didn’t spend the time. Mike Shanahan likes guys who will work really hard. I narrow it down to two things. He’s either lazy, or he’s not very bright to pick up the offense. One or the other. I think he’s bright enough, I just think he was lazy.”

MYSTERIES OF THE UNIVERSE

Questions to ponder while waiting for the Cardinals offense to spring into action against the Brewers:

Will Joe Paterno's latest football-related injury http://michiganzone.blogspot.com/2011/08/mzone-exclusive-joe-paternos-new.html"> create some commercial opportunities for him?

http://www.sportspickle.com/opinion/7535/if-athlete-charities-had-more-selfish-goals"> Should sports charities set more selfish goals?

For hockey fans pining for the start of NHL training camps, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_Mzsrg749g&feature=player_embedded#at=40"> what's more fun than a preseason Ukrainian hockey brawl?

http://www.kfns.com/JoeSportsFan/story.aspx?ID=1515523">Willl Mike Laga ever get his own statue outside the new Busch Stadium for his epic achievement?

Should the Redskins http://twitpic.com/63x6ie/full">look for a new quarterback on Craigslist?

QUIPS ‘R US

Here is what some of America’s leading sports pundits have been writing:

Gene Wojciechowski, ESPN.com “Twenty years ago, John Daly and his monster mullet pulled into the parking lot at Crooked Stick Golf Club. He was the ninth alternate for the 1991 PGA Championship and nobody knew who he was, how he got there or what he was going to do. Four days later he left with the Wanamaker Trophy. Incredibly enough, Tiger Woods is now the 2011 Daly -- but without the Kenny Powers/’Eastbound and Down’ mullet. He has become the ultimate golf question mark. We know who Tiger is, but after 17 years in the national consciousness, we still don't really know him. His doing, not ours.”

Greg Cote, Miami Herald:Danica Patrick confirms she will move from IndyCar to NASCAR next year. Be interesting to see if she can carry not winning to a whole new level.”

Greg Couch, FanHouse: “A Dream Team gets a lot of attention. A Dream Team brings together the best players all at once, from all different directions. A Dream Team has a swagger and makes a lot of noise. The Philadelphia Eagles are officially the NFL’s Dream Team now, a label that will stick in good times and, if there are any, bad. So maybe this is about your definition of Dream Team, or about whether a Dream Team is the same thing as a championship team in football. But the Best Team is still the Green Bay Packers. They are so well-built, so solid. People are forgetting them because they’ve been so quiet in the offseason. Can you name one free agent they’ve signed? Generally, they don’t sign them. They don’t need them.”

Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle: “When Diamondbacks fielders robbed the Giants of a couple of hits Wednesday, Ryan Vogelsong said, ‘We've got to be leading the league in diving plays against us.’ Hard to believe that in this, the Age of Stat, we don't have a www.DivingPlaysAgainstUs.com.”

MEGAPHONE

“I was frustrated early in the year because, especially at the Masters . . .  because I just wasn't feeling well. And it's been frustrating. But now that I'm healthy, it's so much easier to be patient because I feel good. I have way more energy because I'm not trying to block out pain. I can just go out there and play golf.”

Woods, addressing reporters about the state of his game.