Pac-10 announces split into North-South divisions for new 12-school alignment


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Breaking up was hard to do, but the divisional details of next year’s Pacific 12 Conference have at last been finalized.

The conference, which has had 10 schools since Arizona and Arizona State joined in 1978, will split into North and South divisions for football beginning next season.


The South will feature USC, UCLA, Arizona, Arizona State and the two newcomers -- Colorado and Utah.

The North division will be Stanford, Cal, Oregon, Oregon State, Washington and Washington State.

The league also announced it will stage a conference title game in December of 2011 at the home field of the highest-ranked team.

Second-year commissioner Larry Scott delivered the news at a San Francisco news conference on Thursday following unanimous ratification by the league chancellors.

‘This is truly a historic day for the Pac-12 Conference,’ Scott said

There was considerable debate over the split because several rivalries might be be affected.

USC and UCLA fought, and won, to keep Cal and Stanford on their annual schedule. But that means fewer trips to the Southland for the Oregon and Washington schools, which recruit heavily in Southern California.

‘Our rivalries have been kept completely intact,’ Scott said.

The Oregon and Washington schools will now play in Los Angeles every other year.

Each school will play five games in their own division and four cross-over games, with UCLA and USC locked into two of those games against the Bay Area schools.

The conference will not use divisions in other sports.

Scott also announced the conference schools will have equal revenue sharing beginning in 2012. Up to now, the media payout was weighted based on television appearances.

-- Chris Dufresne