The Pac-12 issued a statement on Friday night following the news that the conference has effectively been gutted. Photo Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

As the future of the Pac-12 remains unclear following the announced departures of eight of the conference’s 12 teams, one of the remaining four athletic directors has expressed a desire to rebuild the conference.

Scott Barnes, who has been the athletic director at Oregon State since 2017, shared his perspective on Thursday, “For us, our priority, again, is keeping the Pac-12,” Barnes said. The program’s AD believes that “it’s in the best interest of our student-athletes and our fans to build back the Pac-12. We have inserted ourselves in every conceivable conversation, every feasible conversation at the Power 5 level. And I would say that our best option is rebuilding the Pac-12.”

Barnes added they know Group of 5 options are “obviously” out there, but didn’t list it as the school’s priority, according to The Athletic.

It’s been an interesting couple of weeks for Oregon State, as they’re left in the Pac-12 with Washington State, Stanford, and Cal, and haven’t been brought up as possibly going to the ACC like Cal and Stanford were, so it makes sense that they’re keeping all options open.

Barnes also encouraged the four remaining schools to work together, instead of taking on an every school for itself mentality, saying,  “I do emphatically believe that four of us, as foundational members, can build something back that is real, tangible, and sets the course for the future.”

Fans, however, don’t quite seem on board with Barnes’ plan.

[The Athletic]