The conference realignment cycle that began when Oklahoma and Texas announced that they would be leaving the Big 12 for the SEC is nearly complete, after remaking the college football landscape.

Oregon State and Washington State still have to determine their futures — be it in a rebuilt Pac-? or as part of another conference like the Mountain West — but it appears that Army’s future is close to being decided.

Currently an independent in football, the service academy has been in discussions with the American Athletic Conference for a month now, but appears to be in the final stages of discussions, reports Yahoo Sports’ Ross Dellenger.

“The mutual interest between the school’s football program and the (AAC) has evolved into a serious endeavor where financials — potentially the final step — are now being explored by league executives,” Dellenger writes.

AAC commissioner Mike Aresco confirmed to Yahoo Sports Wednesday that both Army and the AAC want the Black Knights to join as the conference’s 14th member.

“We are definitely pursuing it,” Aresco said. “There’s a reasonable possibility it gets done. Army is interested. We certainly are.”

The biggest remaining hurdles, Dellenger reported, are threefold:

  1. The Army-Navy game.
  2. Army’s television contract with CBS Sports Network.
  3. More than 80 scheduled future games.

As far as the Army-Navy game is concerned, Aresco told Yahoo Sports that the traditional meeting between the rivals would continue to be played on the second weekend of December. The game would not count in the conference standings and the two programs could also meet in the AAC championship game the weekend prior.

The television contract discussions with CBS Sports are a trickier matter — college football fans should be used to that now, after the Pac-12 media deal/debacle, plus the ACC’s grant of rights — with ESPN holding the rights to AAC contests, but a possible settlement exists between CBS Sports Network and ESPN.

As for the games that Army has scheduled for future seasons, Dellenger reported that Army would have combined fees of $35 million to cancel every currently scheduled game and has “enlisted scheduling guru Dave Brown in an effort to break free of the agreements or reschedule the games.”

If Army does end up joining the AAC, it would be as a football-only member (most of Black Knights’ athletics program compete in the Patriot League). At that point, there would be only three football-playing independent programs remaining in the whole of the FBS — Notre Dame, UConn and UMass.