The Big Ten athletic directors and coaches are meeting this week, where supposedly nothing regarding what we actually care about will be talked about. (Of course, I’m very ready to find out why Jim Delany went Tony Montana on someone’s ass in a conference meeting.) So, in light of the anticipated non-news that will doubtlessly spur about eighty rumors anyway, let’s take a look at some of the players and issues in conference realignment that actually haven’t been talked about enough by the national media and blogosphere.
1. Fox – There were two very surprising developments out of the new ACC TV deal that is reportedly close to being finalized. First, the ACC received a substantial increase over its previous deal from ESPN, which was a feat in and of itself considering the “meh” football play coming out of that conference since it expanded, the still dragging economy, and the fact that everyone thought that ESPN blew its college sports wad on the SEC and Big Ten a couple of years ago. Second, that substantial increase was forced on ESPN by Fox as a legitimate competing bidder for the ACC’s TV rights. There had been a lot of speculation that Fox was simply getting out of the college sports business at a national level after losing the rights to the BCS bowls, yet it looks like Rupert Murdoch’s empire is thinking otherwise.
Now, as many of you know, Fox is a 49% partner in the Big Ten Network with the Big Ten Conference, so it has already had a significant role in conference realignment in an indirect sense (unless you buy into the theory, as some readers have suggested, that this is really a ploy for Murdoch to take over all of college athletics). Still, the fact that Fox was seriously in play to get the ACC games can alter the strategic thinking of the Big XII and Pac-10. One of my readers that does some consulting work for a conference speculated that having Fox as a potential deep-pocketed TV suitor for marquee games puts the Big XII, even without Nebraska and Missouri, in a much more stable position down the road… assuming that schools like Texas can stick around for a few years before the conference’s current TV deal expires. That arrangement might not make the Big XII on par with the Big Ten or SEC in terms of TV revenue, but if the Longhorn Sports Network (which I’ll get to in a moment) is a viable property for Texas, then UT in particular might be satisfied and continue to make a go of it with whatever is left in the Big XII. This also gives more credence to the possibility of a “Western Alliance” that is aligned with Fox for media purposes even if the Big XII is depleted and the Pac-10 doesn’t expand, where that alliance could form its own network or enter into joint ventures on TV deals.
So, maybe Fox has a bit more up its sleeve than slamming Glee down our throats during May sweeps.
2. Longhorn Sports Network – The commenters on this blog have been going back-and-forth for quite awhile about the prospect of Texas starting its own TV network, but it seems as if though the national media has paid scant attention to it other than a cursory acknowledgment from time-to-time. The thing is that outside of the Big Ten Network itself, there’s arguably nothing more important in this conference realignment cycle than the Longhorn Sports Network. The fate of the LSN is likely going to determine which conference Texas is going to be in a couple of years from now over possibly every other issue (although there is another potential Texas-based complicating factor that I’ll describe later on). While other Big XII schools may complain that Texas is looking to make more revenue that those other schools can’t take advantage of, it’s in their best interests (at least the ones that don’t end up in the Big Ten or Pac-10) to ensure that the LSN works. It’s really the only conceivable way that Texas could possibly make as much TV money in the Big XII as all of the schools in the Big Ten and SEC and that’s what it’s going to take to get Texas to stay and not completely demolish its current conference. Otherwise, there’s literally nothing else for the Big XII to give to Texas – it’s already given the Longhorns as much as it can handle and it’s still far behind what the Big Ten and SEC could provide, so the notion that Texas is trying to extract more concessions from the Big XII is laughable.
The mere threat of this network could also be used as leverage by Texas in negotiating with the Big Ten or Pac-10, just as the SEC used the threat of a network to get ESPN to give it a Godfather offer to prevent that from ever happening. One way or another, the LSN seems to be conceptually far along at Texas and it’s going to be used to extract as much as possible from whichever conference that it ends up being a member of (whether it stays or goes).
3. Texas Tech – Beyond the LSN, there’s a matter of Texas politics for wherever the Longhorns might end up. Frequent commenter Hopkins Horn has been covering conference realignment for Burnt Orange Nation and put together an excellent piece speaking to a top state political observer. The general assumption is that Texas A&M needs to move with Texas or at least find an acceptable alternative home, which isn’t surprising. Of course, Texas A&M is a top 20 athletic revenue school with huge fan bases in places like Houston and Dallas and a better academic research reputation than schools such as Nebraska and Missouri. In other words, A&M can stand strongly alone on its own merits. The Aggies are not some type of political albatross.
So, the critical question for any conference that really wants Texas isn’t whether it’s willing to take Texas A&M because that’s an easy answer: HELL YES. Instead, the real dilemma is whether that conference is willing to take Texas Tech, which is in the Big XII in the first place because of political protection and is exactly the type of school that could seek such protection again. The political source that Hopkins Horn spoke to personally believed that Tech may not have to be part of a deal, yet that was the only time that he threw in the caveat that he could be wrong on that issue. Note that UT president William Powers has been rumored to say that Texas can’t go anywhere without Texas Tech. Whether that’s ultimately going to be the case is speculative, but having to take Tech on top of UT and A&M might have to be the assumed price for any conference that wants to break into the state of Texas and that certainly wouldn’t be acceptable to either the Big Ten or Pac-10.
4. Nancy Cantor – Ms. Cantor is the Chancellor of Syracuse University. Prior to that, she was the Chancellor of my alma mater, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. As a result, Cantor is the only person at any of the usual suspects of candidate schools that has had direct working relationships with all of the decision makers in the Big Ten, ranging from the university presidents to the conference office run by Jim Delany. Considering that there aren’t really 100% no-brainer candidates outside of Texas and Notre Dame, this is not an insignificant connection.
5. The LDS “No Playing on Sunday” Rule – I’ve long thought that BYU would be an obvious choice for the Big XII if it needed to find any replacement teams. (Note that there’s NFW that BYU gets into the Pac-10. I explained it here before and Jon Wilner from the San Jose Mercury News expands upon it further.) The fact that Baylor only recently allowed frisky moves such as the Charleston and Waltz on campus seemed to indicate that the Big XII wouldn’t have a problem with religious peccadilloes. However, I’ve been seeing a number of insights indicating that the inability to participate in athletic events on Sunday due to LDS rules could be a bigger sticking point than anticipated. The rule isn’t a problem for football, yet virtually every other sport is affected.
Whether the Big XII can deal with that rule (and personally, I think that they should in order to get such a solid fan base if it loses a school like Nebraska) could determine whether the conference replaces any lost members from the west or east. That has very significant “second wave” repercussions after the Big Ten and/or Pac-10 make any expansion moves. If the Big XII doesn’t take BYU (due to the “No Playing on Sunday” rule) or TCU (since it doesn’t add a new market as long as Texas and Texas A&M are in the league), then the Mountain West Conference is looking in great shape to survive or even thrive, especially if it ends up adding Boise State as expected in the next few weeks. Meanwhile, I’ve seen a surprisingly large amount of smoke that the Big XII might pick on the poor Big East even further by taking Louisville and potential Big East replacement member Memphis before it even had a chance to replace anyone in that conference. Louisville certainly makes a lot of sense to me even if it would be on the geographic fringe of the conference since it has a good football fan base (who has simply suffered through a couple of horrific seasons) and a world-class basketball program that will likely cement itself permanently as the nation’s top revenue generator in that sport once the new KFC Yum! Center (or as I affectionately call it, the “KenTaco Hut Center”) opens up next season.
(On a side note, I’m a little bit frightened to try the KFC Double Down Sandwich. It’s certainly not because I don’t like the ingredients. Quite to the contrary, I’m a certified sommelier of bacon and having lived close to the only KFC buffet in the Chicago area for a couple of years means that I no longer can eat Original Recipe like a normal human being anymore – there are no limits to how many pieces I can throw down. I’m concerned that trying the Double Down Sandwich will end up being like that first hit for a crack addict, which will then doom my body to needing 20 angioplasties by the time I’m 40. My metabolism has fortunately always been pretty good, but I know that I’m going to slam into that wall sooner rather than later if I start making bacon/Original Recipe combos a regular habit.)
So, what the Big XII thinks about BYU could determine the ultimate fate of Big East almost as much as the Big Ten can. I’ve actually been someone that is skeptical that there won’t be as many proverbial dominoes falling as predicted even if the Big Ten goes up to 16 schools, but the BYU dynamic is something that have a multitude of repercussions.
We’ll keep a watch out this week to see anything substantive comes out of the Big Ten athletic meetings. In the meantime, I’ll get my fill of LeBron-to-the-Bulls speculation (I’m not going to lie – when Chad Ford wrote that 3 NBA GMs texted him that LeBron James would end up with the Bulls AND the team could trade the cap killing Luol Deng contract to clear space for signing Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh, I almost wet myself), watching the Blackhawks and pondering the final hours of my favorite show LOST. Don’t ask me about White Sox baseball, though.
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1,034 thoughts on “Underrated Players and Issues in Conference Realignment”
Will the real Abe Froman please stand up?
steak and eggs
Corn beef Hash
Meatball and cheese sub
The B12 contract with ESPN reportedly has a clause where it can be reopened to negotiation if the conference starts a cable channel. Since Fox is coming up for renegotiation 4 years earlier than ESPN, if they start a Western Alliance channel (The WAll?) they might could grab the whole kit and kaboodle of conference games. Moving marquee games from the ESPN family to Fox may not be in the conference’s best interest, but the concept may be driving Fox’s moves.
UT AD Dodds recently said something to the effect of, “Wouldn’t it make sense for each school to have their own channel?” So could they be considering setting up a conference channel network where each state has their local school’s channel as an affiliate? The big schools like Texas and OU could have their own channel in state, but also carry prime time or feature games of the Western Alliance. That could be on basic, with a co-channel on the sports tier to handle most of the network filler and overflow. For dual school states or regions perhaps it is a shared channel? There was an article recently stating that UT was considering sharing their channel with other schools, presumably aTm. A Lone Star Channel instead of a Longhorn Sports Channel. Another option would be to give each subscriber the option of UT or aTm as their basic Western Alliance affiliate, while the other and the WA feed on 2 sports tier channels. Conference schools that can’t afford the start up costs could simply go with the core WA network channel.
Lots of ways to pull that off, though negotiating revenue allocation and costing could be tricky. Just seems that if Fox Sports can regionalize their cable network into regional branded affiliates, why not do the same for schools?
This whole “each school gets it’s own channel” doesn’t make sense to me. They’d be duplicating fixed location-based costs 11 times over for each campus to run a cable network. Costs which I’ve got to believe are significant. This is going to cut into the bottom line for each member school’s channel. I gotta figure the only school this would make sense/money for would be UT.
Actually the opposite. Most everything run out of a central BTN or WAll headquarters, with some local content collection through existing campus TV facilities. Perhaps an exception for the big dogs like UT or Ohio State, but studio shows would originate in Chicago or Fox’s LA HQ. Same for most editing and production. Very simple for some tech to slap a “Longhorn Sports Network” logo on a feed out of LA.
Google translate needs a BS to English
“each school gets it’s own channel”
“To hell with the rest of the conference, we’re TEXAS”
“To hell with the rest of college athletics, We’re The Big Home Wrecker Conference.”
M – very similar quote from the original Tennessee Volunteer, Davy Crockett. In his farewell address to Congress, after getting beat for re-election, he said, “You may all go to Hell and I will go to Texas.”
It makes perfect sense if you assume each and every school has the resources, reach, appeal, and alumni base of the University of Texas — as DeLoss Dodds seems to be doing.
And now for some crazy brainstorming. B12 commish Beebe has said that the conference would likely look for new markets to replace any lost schools instead of, say, more Texas teams. Of course Beebe is a shill and says a lot of things, but let’s play a bit. NE and MO leave while Colorado joins Utah in the P12, 3 teams needed. Out west you have UNLV and NM with markets of under 2 million, pretty darn small. BYU’s state is nearing 3 million, but has aforementioned issues. Forget Memphis, their market doesn’t even crack 1.5 million. Louisville isn’t much better, though they’ve got the better overall brand name and following. Same for WV, under 2 million. At least Cincy-Dayton is a 3 million market, same for Pitt, while S. FL and UCF are each slightly larger and growing fast. But the FL schools are still seeds that aren’t assured of bringing their markets.
So could we see a wacky combo of the B12 plugging in something like Lou, S.Fl and UCF (Oklahoma schools to the North?) A B12 North add of Lou, Cincy, and WV? CT, Syr, and Cincy? If the B10+ goes to 16, I just can’t see Texas staying in the B12 long term, though perhaps temporarily as a negotiating ploy. Hence some hasty arrangements, BCS ports in a storm?
Unlikely, but throwing it out since there aren’t any home run replacements for the B12, just bunt singles or double steals. Another of my Eephus Pitches.
Sometimes when sides are negotiating, one side thinks they have all the power when in fact they have none. This strikes me as a situation Texas is in regarding negotiations with the Big 10. A Big 10 invite isn’t coming with anything more than the same package every other team in the conference gets. I don’t think Texas can live with that.
I tend to agree with why the Big Ten may have a hard time of getting a deal done with Texas.
The Big Ten can’t offer anything unequal in terms of the revenue or the network, so there really isn’t a middle ground here for bargaining. I wouldn’t put it past Delany to come up with something, but I don’t really see anything on the table that could bring Texas into the Big Ten if it really wanted its own channel with 24/7 Texas in Texas.
The middle ground can come in terms of how soon the school gets equity/full money and buy-in.
Texas/ND/Nebraska-immediately and cheaply
everyone else-might have to wait awhile or pay
Based on what i’ve read progamming and live programs at that is what makes the real money for a cable channel. The LSN sounds great but where is TEXAS gonna get the programs to make this work?
I had concerns about adding certain universities, such as UT. But, I now have no such concerns. I believe that the BT will negotiate fair terms for both the current members and any new members. It’s the “Big Ten Way.”
Also, I don’t understand why many don’t believe that the Pac-1# will expand. I disagree. I understand about the unanimous vote (especially as it relates to Stanford…), but do you really believe that Stanford (or anyone else) thinks the status quo is fine? I believe the Pac will expand. If they cannot get UT, it will likely be to 12 (CU & Utah?). If they can get UT, then it may be 14 or 16 (UT, TAMU, TTU, CU…?).
Stanford is probably OK with the status quo. Their endowment is so huge that income from the sports dept. is not all that big a deal for them. However, they have to be sensitive to the needs of the other conference members — particularly USC — so they will be persuadable to cast a yes vote for the “right” package of teams. But they won’t be shy about threatening a “no” vote for a school Stanford does not see as a cultural fit. We all assume they would be a “no” vote on BYU, and I think that assumption is correct. They may even have qualms about an outstanding school like aTm, because it is the state military institute of Texas. Stanford’s pickiness is why I’ve floated Rice as a potential partner for Texas in the Pac-10 and Colorado State as a potential partner for Colorado (Stanford is so fond of the status quo in the P-10 that CU+CSU’s replication of the conference’s existing “matched pairs” would be very appealing).
I think Stanford would only object to schools that didn’t match up to the academic standards. When looking at “cultural” fits, I think Cal (and even UCLA) would be the roadblock to conservative schools like BYU and TAM. Berkeley is probably the most liberal school/city in the country, and there would be a lot of resistance to adding a Mormon school and/or a military school. California liberals are still smarting from that Prop 8 (gay marriage) vote a couple years ago, and the Mormom church pumped a LOT of money and effort into getting that vote to pass in CA.
In fairness, the Mormon church itself didn’t pump money into Prop 8, its individual members did–at the request of the LDS church. If the Mormon church itself had poured money from its tithing revenue into the effort, it would have been in serious jeopardy of losing its tax excempt status.
True Story: I was working out today at the gym, watching ESPN, and the KFC Double Down commercial came on. I almost threw up a little in my mouth.
Oh, and adding.
Oh #2, stay away from LeBron. Cleveland needs him dammit. That city might just explode and sink into Lake Erie if he leaves.
@Manifesto – The LeBron situation has made me feel some sadness for Cleveland for the first time in my life. The way that the town has been dragged through the mud (supposedly not being “worthy” of LeBron) after all it has been through (sports-wise and economically) has been extremely rough.
That being said, and I would say this even if I weren’t a rabid Bulls fan, the best long-term basketball situation for him would be Chicago. D-Rose throwing up beautiful passes to LeBron for the next decade along with the depth on the rest of the roster is something he’s not going to find in New York while the Cavs seemed to have aged 15 years over the past couple of weekes. The Clippers arguably have a good situation on paper, too, but my gawd, it’s still the f*cking Clippers!
That Chad Ford proposal of a sign-and-trade for Deng’s contract would be awful from the standpoint of the Cavs, though. I have no idea why Cleveland would do that. It would be the sports management equivalent of The Drive and The Shot happening on the same day.
I agree that I think the best formula for a championship is currently in Chicago. Cleveland needs some players with consistency, and they just don’t have it. I really don’t follow the NBA close enough to know the cap situation for Cleveland, but they need to do something.
If LeBron wants to win a championship, he has no reason to go the Knicks, Clippers, or Nets. Those would be money moves, that’s it. Even that’s debatable if you figure he’s getting max money no matter where he ends up. In Chicago he could win a championship, but play for a team where he’s forever in MJ’s shadow.
In Cleveland he’s a god. I honestly think he could kill someone, get caught, and get away with it because he’s LeBron. If he wins a championship there, they might declare a public holiday in his honor. That’s something he won’t find in another city. Chicago already has a statue of MJ.
All he needs is a front office smart enough to put the correct pieces around him. Don’t know if that’s possible in Cleveland.
Not a Nets fan, but Brook Lopez and Devin Harris are a really good supporting cast in search of a superstar. And the Nets are going to be in NYC in a couple of years. And that Russian owner is not going to be shy about throwing around his dough to run a first-class operation. I think the Nets are not just a $$$ move for LBJ.
@Mike R – The Nets won only 12 games this year! 12! Now, I do think Lopez and Harris are good and if the Nets win the lottery, they’ll be adding John Wall on top of that. The Russian owner is also all kinds of awesome – if anyone hasn’t seen the 60 Minutes interview with him from a month ago, look it up on YouTube NOW. It is worth every single second of your time. There’s the Jay-Z connection, too. With all of that, I’d at least give the Nets a better shot of landing LeBron than the Knicks (who have ZERO to offer other than location). Still, the Nets are the East Coast equivalent of the Clippers – big market on paper with a small market fan base. Chicago and Miami (assuming D-Wade doesn’t bolt) have the best combo of competitive basketball sense and market desirability, in that order.
This might sound dumb, but what are the chances Wade and/or another big FA end up in Cleveland with LBJ? Is Cleveland’s payroll too close to the cap?
I admit to being ignorant of the NBA as it stands; I’m mostly a football guy.
@Manifesto – It’s an either/or scenario – with the contracts that the Cavs have committed to others, they can only afford to sign LeBron OR a different max free agent. Of course, it’s unlikely they’d attract any max free agent without LeBron there in the first place. Cleveland is screwed if LeBron doesn’t re-sign with them.
Cripes. Thanks. Don’t suppose they could trade up in the draft for Evan Turner or John Wall? Hah.
Cleveland should just give LBJ part ownership of the team if they haven’t yet.
It’s a huge longshot, but I would not discount location with LeBron and the Knicks. He loves NYC, loves the Yankees and loves MSG. They have the space to add Bosh and LeBron, now lets say Phil Jackson really does move on to somthing new, wouldn’t LeBron, Bosh and Phil be desirable for everyone? All that said, he’s going to Chicago!
I think the best case scenario for Lebron to go to the Clippers. Look at what the Heat has coming back outside of Wade and Beasley. They have ZERO size, an average point guard, no interior defense, and no rebounding. The Bulls, on the other hand will need to deal Luol Deng if they get Lebron, except no one wants that contract. They have no interior scoring and no shooters, which wastes one of Lebron’s greatest talents in his passing ability.
There are two scenarios for Lebron if he wants to win championships RIGHT NOW for teams with enough cap space: Clippers and Thunder, aka Zombie Sonics per Bill Simmons. Believe it or not, Chris Kaman is one of the ten best centers in the NBA right now. Eric Gordon will stretch the floor and will take advantage of Lebron’s passing ability. Griffin is a wild card, and COULD be very good right away. The only question mark is at point guard, and Steve Blake is pretty good, but if Baron Davis can just return to 50% of his 2007 form, that team would be in great shape, especially with having the #8 pick in the draft.
With Lebron, the Clippers are a championship contender RIGHT NOW.
I was in Cleveland last December to visit a college friend. I don’t know how you guys up North handle that cold. It 14 and Sunny when he picked me up from the Airport. We went to the Steelers/Browns game and a Cavs game. That Browns game was colder than any duck blind I’ve ever been in. Thank goodness, we had club seats.
Even though I’ve seen LeBron play a few times in New Orleans, I wanted to see LeBron play in Cleveland with LSU’s biggest alum, Shaq. The love and reverence Cleveland has for LeBron is similar to Drew Brees in NOLA, plus LeBron is from Akron. While I wish he would play for the Hornets (unrealistic because we’re stuck with giving ga-zillions to a washed-up Peja & we’re the Hornets), I really hope he stays in Cleveland. He could be the Cal Ripken/Joe Mauer of the NBA, and he still has plenty of time to win rings.
Cleveland gets really cold, in large part because of the lake. I’m from Columbus and it’s usually a little bit warmer. Granted, winter is still cold.
ESPN had an article up recently juxtaposing Kevin Garnett’s career with LeBron’s where it suggested LBJ needed to abandon loyalty to win a championship, like Garnett. Like you said, though, LBJ’s situation is somewhat different because he’s from Akron.
As you said, he’s revered in Cleveland. Would he be revered in New York or LA? Not a chance. He’s another big name in a list of big names. New York and LA want him because he’s a big name: He’s the basketball equivalent of the trophy wife.
I also hope he stays. He’s more than a basketball player in Cleveland, but that’s all he’ll ever be in NYC/LA/maybe Chicago. Then again, maybe the pressure that comes with being Cleveland’s Superman is part of the problem.
Manifesto – 100% right. Using the hated NY Yankees as an example, Lebron on another team would be A-Rod. Yankee fans love him only when he’s doing well. In Cleveland, LeBron will always be Jeter and get unconditional love.
Either way, he’ll get the same amount of money, so his choice is hometown hero/deity, or hired-gun/mercenary.
Wait a sec- I thought Cleveland already did sink into the lake?
Assuming no TX/ND, how about adding RU, Pii, Neb. Mo. RU for academics and TVs, Pitt for academics, TVs. PSU rivalry, Neb. for Fball and overall sports program, Missouri for fit, geography, TVs, overall sports program.
These 4 schools seem to me to be the best available candidates. I know that gives you 15, but you could divide as follows:
Have a 9 game conference schedule. East teams play play 6/7 in own division and 3/7 in other division each year.
West teams play all 5/6 in wown division and 4/8 n other division each year.
This arrangement would preserve every rivalry game.
15 would leave open the possibility that ND or TX could join down the road….or U Conn after it gains AAU status….
Meant to add research for Pitt, not TVs. TVs are obviously the issue with Pitt.
Meant to say “research”, not TVs, for Pitt…..
I have trouble seeing how Texas (or any other single school) could have a successful network. First and foremost, they would not have any live football games to place on the channel, other than potentially the FCS bodybag game. I guarantee that without football, the Big Ten Network never gets off the ground. A second, related point is that Texas simply cannot generate the volume of content. From just looking at the channel, the BTN shows 3 baseball and 3 softball games a week, with other live and taped events sprinkled in and has been criticized for being mostly “filler”. LSN would be even more so, especially considering that it would not have access to Texas’ away games and many games in basketball would be taken by the conference deal. Third, while Texas is rather ideally suited as a very popular school in a very popular state, it still is only one school. Could they take on the risks and costs associated with the network by themselves? The BTN had a severe fight getting its channel on in places where seemingly everyone graduated from a Big Ten school, and that (again) was with football and most basketball games. I am just skeptical about Texas winning that fight with a channel that is mostly replays and non-revenue sports.
From an inventory perspective, the channel would have 1 football game a year (the FCS opponent that has been PPV), 4 basketball games (the amount on FSN in Texas only last year), and about 15-20 baseball games.
I suppose the counter to this is that it doesn’t have to be as successful as the Big Ten; it only has to be 1/11th as profitable.
The fundamental issue is the BTN has proven very good at monetizing marginal events, those that do not have much national or even wide regional appeal, but attract enough viewers and buyers who will demand the channel (Think MSU-Michigan from last year). Texas’ games are the sort that will always be picked up by whatever national television coverage the conference has.
I realize this got a little rambling, but I would be interested if anyone thinks differently on any or all of my points.
Yeah this inventory problem is the basic issue here and a part of why the Big Ten wants more schools for more live events (i.e. second tier football games).
You also provide a solid summary of the issues that a Texas or any other big name school would face in terms of starting a network.
The LSN at this point seems to be partially a bargaining chip for Texas to use against all conferences (including its own) but in practice it may not be as devastating at it seems to be on paper.
I think maybe the inventory is not the only problem. Sharing of ownership, income and participation by all the other conference members just might be the biggest obstacle. How would Michigan feel about appearing on Ohio State TV with no say and little to no income?
I would guess for football you will see a lot of Texas high school and some lower division college games. Add a lot of ‘classic Longhorn games’ amd there may be enough content/interest to make it a go on the football side of it.
Of course, I’m usually wrong so take it with a grain of salt.
Interesting quotes from Iowa’s athletic director. Nothing specific but good insights as to the Big Ten’s thinking:
Barta told discussed with reporters Monday possible geography and population in regards to expansion.
“We’ve talked from 10,000 feet about the census 20 years ago and the rust belt population, the Big Ten population versus movement to the Sun Belt over the last 20 years,” Iowa athletic director Gary Barta told the AP.
“More and more people have moved to the South,” he said. “The Big Ten still has the largest population base of alumni, but we want to make sure years from now, if that movement continues, we’re in position to say that.”
Perhaps schools like Miami may be receiving more than cursory consideration. Miami’s President, Donna Shalala, is the former Chancellor at Wisconsin and knows Delaney well and is good friends with Barry Alvarez.
No surprise that bill Lynch is comfortable in his ignorance. He is clueless.
Mr. Barta’s comments are pretty scary. Hopefully, he’s only talking about making the obligatory reach for TX…not schools like Miami or GT,,,I would remind Mr. Barta that the job of these schools, as public institutions, is to make our region better…not abandon our region for sunnier pastures……
Hmmm, yes, one could read Barta’s comment as suggesting one or more ‘Southern’ schools are being targeted. What are the 4 biggest ‘Southern’ states? TX, FL, GA, and NC. UT, Mia, GT, Duke, NC. UT, FL, GT, Duke, NC. UT, aTm, GT, Mia (+ ND.) Mizzou ain’t Southern.
“More and more people have moved to the South,” he said. “The Big Ten still has the largest population base of alumni, but we want to make sure years from now, if that movement continues, we’re in position to say that.”
One could read that as not so much adding multiple ‘Southern’ schools, but big schools with big alumni bases where many end up in the South.
Or perhaps bring it back to his level of ‘Need to know.’ “Don’t be shocked if we are courting teams outside our region” without hearing specific targets.
They have the largest population base of alumni, and the population is shifting south. The AD’s also complain about travel expenses and athlete concerns, especially for secondary sports. Sending the track team to Texas for the weekend can get expensive.
I was thinking here, and with previous posts, that this whole expansion (ND, Texas, Texas A&M, Nebraska) is invisioned to make the BTN a national brand. If you have enough QUALITY football games, the public will demand it. Rationalization is that not only do we have a great product, but there are tons of Big 10 alums living in Tampa, or Miami, or Pheonix. If they can get to that point or close…. all this talk about adding Rutgers for the tv households is pointless. Some of the sky high revenue numbers that we have seen floated (upwards of $45 million per team) would easily be realized as a national brand.
Yeah, you could read that as a statement they will add more schools with big campus populations, like Rutgers. It would also seem to diminish the chances of a Syracuse or Notre Dame.
Looking at populations projected 20 years from now-the populations of the current SEC, Pac 10, and Big 10 will all be pretty close. However, if the Big 10 just adds New Jersey (Rutgers) or Missouri, it will still have the biggest population imprint of any conference in 2030.
The Texas schools, obviously, can swing that in favor of any of the 3 conferences. If they go to the Pac 10 or SEC, they will keep that conference close or give it a decent lead. If they go to the Big 10, that will still be the clear king for decades to come.
Not sure how this will format, but here goes. I looked up some numbers on population for a discussion with SEC fans about expansion. Currently the B10 footprint is over 10% more populated than the SEC. By 203o the SEC will be about 4% lareger. Of course, whoever gets Texas gets a large lead:
Current Projected 2030
*wiki *US Census
Penn 12,600,000 12,800,000
Ohio 11,500,000 11,600,000
Michigan 9,900,000 10,700,000
Indiana 6,400,000 6,800,000
Illinois 12,900,000 13,400,000
Wisconsin 5,700,000 6,100,000
Minnesota 5,300,000 6,300,000
Iowa 3,000,000 3,000,000
TOTAL 67,300,000 70,700,000
Florida 18,500,000 28,700,000
Georgia 9,800,000 12,000,000
So Carolina 4,600,000 5,100,000
Tennessee 6,300,000 7,400,000
Kentucky 4,300,000 4,600,000
Mississippi 2,900,000 3,100,000
Alabama 4,700,000 4,900,000
Louisiana 4,500,000 4,800,000
Arkansas 2,900,000 3,200,000
TOTAL 58,500,000 73,800,000
Texas 25,000,000 33,000,000
But it is also interesting to note that the comments mention ‘alumni population’. I don’t know where to find those numbers, so I simply compared the size of the schools. Even with one fewer member, the B10 is about 50% bigger. Even adding Texas to the SEC doesn’t close the gap:
B10 Total (per school site)
So Car 27,000
Ole Miss 18,000
Miss St 18,000
Make of this what you will. But the decline of the rust belt is not going to give the SEC a major lead in the next 20 years.
Loki- good stuff, but the fact that the SEC is the number 1 football conference right now when it has several million less people than the Big 10 would imply that the SEC can get even more separation as they achieve population parity. The fact that the recruiting in the SEC territories figures to get better with population increases is another problem.
Of course, adding Rutgers and Missouri would leave the Big 10 with a solid population lead in 2030 unless the SEC got Texas or the ACC heartland.
I don’t know if you saw it, but in the last post someone linked to an excellent blog posting that had population numbers for the 6 BCS conferences:
Thanks. I’ll have to dig into that one after work.
If you look at the SEC population growth for 2030, it is interesting that Florida sees ~10M, Texas ~8M, the entire SEC (minus Florida) is ~5M, while the Big Ten is ~3M.
Therefore, if you are focused on raw population growth numbers, it’s not important for the Big Ten to get into “the South”. It is important to get into Texas and Florida.
While getting UF to leave the SEC for The Big Ten is a pipe dream, this is an eye opener. When you add in everything else with UF (Research, Academics, Football Power, TV households, recruiting grounds and now population growth), I wonder if UF would be as big of a catch as UT.
It’s enough to make me believe that it would be worthwhile to approach UF and discuss a Godfather offer to them. Yes, I’m sure that they are happy in the SEC, but again, if you put it down on paper what adding say, UT, UF, UGa (as UF’s local partner), NE, and RU, perhaps it is a big enough number that UF would consider it. IF Big Ten + Texas + NYC = $44M per school, does Big Ten + Texas + NYC + Florida + Georgia = $66M?
$66M vs $17M (current SEC TV contracts) is a pretty damn big number.
…And if UF is a pipe dream, perhaps getting Miami is more of a target to get into Florida, and because they have a number of East Coast alums that would want the BTN.
Florida would, like Texas, be a grand slam addition. Florida is the only other school that comes close to what Texas brings. Good school, AAU, good research, well regarded ARWU, great sports teams, large state school (50K students), great market… And like Texas, I think they’re looking to improve their academics and associate with schools more like themselves.
They are in a stable conference with established relationships and great cash flow, however, and its not like they’re near the BT footprint. So it’s hard for me to think they’d consider leaving the SEC.
Any Florida or SEC people here who could offer more of an inside opinion?
Miami is small (16K students, meaning fewer alumni), private, but outperforms Florida State (39K students) in research and in academic ranking.
According to Wikipedia, Florida’s president Bernie Machen did his undergrad work at Vanderbilt, but got his masters and PhD from Iowa. He also worked for the University of Michigan. Hmmm….
You don’t have to be an alum to be a fan. Professional sports are not nearly as big of a deal in the South as they are in the Midwest and on the East Coast. We didn’t get any NFL teams in the South until the 60s. UGA is more popular than the Falcons in Atlanta. Until this year’s Superbowl, LSU & the Saints were about 50/50 in New Orleans. Nashville loves the Vols more than the Titans.
What I’m getting to is that while a lot of non-college educated football fans in the Midwest and on the East Coast may be NFL fans and may not really follow or support the area college teams, there are very few non-college educated football fans in the South that don’t give a shit about SEC football. Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, LSU and others all have their own “subway” alums even though we don’t have many subways down here.
I’m not buying the population projection numbers. Outside of Tennessee, the population growth figures for the Southern states are starting to round off. If Florida continues to grow at their current rate, which has decreased on a per year average this decade versus from 1990-2000, it will be around 24 million in 2030. And population growth is directly related to economic growth, which has been very poor in the Midwest versus the rest of the country, which is why there’s been such stymied growth. Once it picks up again, when the Midwestern states find a new niche, their population will go up again, and states like Florida, Georgia etc. round off, the Midwest will still maintain a higher population.
One other thing: although a lot has been written about expansion, ultimately the decision will be made by 11 people. I have seen no article or analysis describing the history, outlook, public statements or relationships (the last one is very important) of the Big Ten Chancellors/Presidents and what universities are most likely to garner the eight votes necessary for expansion.
That would be an interesting topic for discussions.
It would not be a bad idea to collect the expansion-related statements of the Big 10 presidents along with their resumes, and a list of the folks on each campus who would have input into that school’s vote. There have to be folks on this board who are familiar with each of the 11 schools. So its a resource that we collectively have the ability to create.
I caught some talk on College Football Live (ESPN) about some AD’s commenting on how they expect to be ‘brought into the know’ this week at the Big Ten meetings. I’ll be interested to see what leaks correspond with these meetings….should be a crazy couple weeks in expansion news, I have a feeling the fuse is about to be lit.
I too have a hard time figuring out how Texas can find enough content for a LSN to make it successful. The Big10 is expanding in an effort to get more content and inventory for the BTN. If the Big10 has a difficult time coming up with live content I would assume content for 1 school, even the magnitude of Texas, would have an equally, if not harder, go at it. The only way I could see it is if Texas were in the Big10, a BTN2 that televises all non revenue sports on school centric channels in the respective states would televise all Texas overflow sports that do not appear on the ESPN Networks, BTN or BTN.com. I don’t know how that would work but even then I still have a problem with a special arrangement for 1 member school unless each member school could be afforded the same opportunity.
Another point is the matter of security and stability. If I am the University President, that is what I am looking for. It seems that we tend to overlook that point. However, if I am Texas or Texas A&M, I am looking for a more permanent home and one in which I could stay for the next 25-50 years minimum. I would not want a situation where I am looking to change conference affiliation every 15 years or so. I may be on top now but that may not always be the case. With that in mind, I am leaving the Big12 for the stability of the Pac10/Western Alliance or Big10 if other members leave and I have an offer on the table from either one. If the Big12 implodes, this will make the 2nd conference Texas is a member of that has ceased to exist. That should be telling for Texas.
I don’t think the Big10 or Pac10 to a lesser extent, needs to offer a special deal to Texas for membership. The special deal is the stability, academics, prestige, CIC (in Big10’s case), security and money (in Big10’s case). If association with world class peer Universities isn’t enough, I would say that Texas is not yet ready to be a full member of the conference and I would wish them luck for the future. The Big10 has a longstanding formula that works very well. I wouldn’t mess with that winning formula, creating dissension amongst current members for the sake of 1 potential member by offering special deals.
Count me among those skeptical of whether there would be enough programming to make an LSN viable today.
(And contrary to what others have been speculating, I feel the LSN would be UT-only. No A&M. Just a guess, but I’ve seen nothing that would make me believe otherwise.)
If the LSN had existed for 2009-10, I believe it would have been able to show one live football game (ULM) and maybe eight or nine men’s hoops games, mostly December weeknight games against the likes of UT-Pan Am.
However, I believe that, if the LSN does launch, the UT numbers crunchers will have determined that it would be financially advantageous for UT to do so, and they will be right.
This is still the biggest problem.
The question is whether the network can pull in $10M (or whatever benchmark) in terms of profitability per year in order to pick up the slack from the Big 12 contract.
I think a lot of us are skeptical as to whether that can happen considering that the Big Ten is expanding in order to increase the number of live events (especially second tier football games), etc.
Graham Spaniard, the current President at Penn State, was the Chancellor at the University of Nebraska
Barry Alvarez played football at nebraska under Bob Devaney
And Bob Devaney rhymes with Jim Delaney…..
@ Frank, interesting take on BYU…I, too, started to see the “map” and future of all this and I kept coming back to BYU as a “What happens to them?” Pac 10 – nope. The Big 12 needs BYU, assuming Nebraska’s gone and assuming the Big 12 survives.
LSN – Not yet a believer. It took two years for the BTN and comcast to work a deal. I doubt that UT can negotiate with every cable carrier in Texas and work a deal that makes sense and then have enough content that people will actually tune in for. If they can’t get it on a basic tier and people buy it for awhile, realize how much they aren’t watching it, well, it will be doomed…
Does Comcast provide cable service in Texas? If so, is it a major carrier? I ask because Texas could pair with Comcast on a potential LSN and pretty much be guaranteed the money they’d want. Comcast where I live in the PNW has Comcast Sports Net, a cable channel they started so they could earn more money. $2 is the monthly subscription rate that Comcast gets from Comcast customers for that channel. Talk about a racket.
Despite being charged $2 a month, there are a few Trailblazer games, a few Portland Timbers games, maybe some minor league baseball games, and pretty much no other other live sports. The rest of it is game reruns, horrible talk and studio shows and, believe it or not, roller hockey reruns from the 70s.
Regardless, a UT/Comcast partnership could potentially give UT, say, $1 per month, per subscriber. It wouldn’t matter if the content sucked, because Comcast subscribers would have no choice. If Comcast is in enough homes in Texas, that could be enough money for the LSN to work financially. I imagine the fact that Comcast now owns NBC could also play a role.
Comcast is the dominant cable provider, at least in Houston. They bought Time Warner.
6 degrees of Jim Delany.
One thing that the Big Ten, SEC, and ACC all seem to be realizing that the Big XII does not is that what you’re selling to the networks is not the conference members, but the competition among them. The NFL figured this out years ago, that the leveling effect created by equal (not equitable, but equal) revenue sharing means the competition is better, and therefore more appealing to the audience and fan bases. Heck, even baseball has some mechanisms to help improve competitiveness (revenue sharing / luxury taxes, and the draft). College sports have no such mechanism, so the rich tend to get richer. It seems to take malfeasance or a bad coaching hire to meaningfully affect the existing hegemonies.
It’s unfortunate that the big guns among the Big 12 schools are entirely too focused on getting what they can or feel they deserve from the TV pie (appearance pools, the LSN) rather than focusing on baking a bigger, better, more attractive pie.
I don’t see how the Big 12 is a sustainable conference in the long term, considering how each school is rowing in its own direction, and doesn’t seem to much care about or consider the interests of its partners or the collective enterprise as a whole.
Fair points, but I disagree with the implication that “each school…rowing in its own direction” necessarily represents a failing on anyone’s part. Unlike MLB or the NFL, college teams have to worry not only about how they stack up within their leagues, but also how they compare to the best teams from other leagues. So, it’s obviously in the best interest of the Yankees to share in helping the weaker teams, even if it means they are slightly weaker for it – as long as they have the resources to compete for the World Series, it doesn’t matter whether they can beat the Japan League champ. If UT/Bama/OU/USC/etc. made the equivalent sacrifice, they might well be in trouble – they might still win their own league, but they could find themselves at a disadvantage in the national title hunt against other teams that didn’t have to make that sacrifice.
Accordingly, the “equal” conferences remain competitive because the inequities aren’t that significant on the whole, and thus the powers don’t really have to give up much. Essentially, Texas, and the Big XII as a whole, are simply in a different situation from the BigTen/ACC/SEC, each of which has a core of 6-8 neighboring schools that are similarly situated in almost every way and therefore have built up bonds of trust over many decades. Each of these conferences also have a few members that are weaker in some respects but share in the overall trust bond, largely because they are natural geographic fits and they’ve just always been there (Wake/MissSt/NW).
In the Big XII, Texas has only OU and A&M as regional peer institutions (state flagship schools with huge athletic budgets and corresponding alumni support) with whom it shares a long history. It’s one thing for a 6-10 similar schools to take a slight hit to maintain their shared 100-year history with NW or Vandy, and it’s quite another for UT/OU/A&M to take a much larger hit to carry 5 or 6 weaker schools, some of which they hadn’t played until 12 years ago. Doesn’t strike me as unfair or underhanded; it’s just a different situation. In fact, this is the key insight that Frank started with – Texas would be among peers in the BigTen, and it mostly isn’t in the Big XII.
Not rowing in the same direction isn’t a failure on anyone’s part, it’s a failure on *everyone’s* part. Ben Franklin’s aphorism about hanging together or hanging separately comes to mind.
How can it be in tOSU’s best interests to share television revenue equally with Northwestern, and also not in Texas’s best interests to not share revenue equally with Baylor? Simple — the Big Ten is looking to the long view, where the rising tide lifts all boats, whereas the Big XII schools (mine included) are looking only to short-term interests that benefit themselves directly.
And exactly how again is Nebraska not a “state flagship school with a huge athletic budget and corresponding alumni support?”
And while we’re at it, there used to be a long-running association of such neighboring schools — it started back in 1907 as the MVIAA. We had those bonds of trust. And the injection of the Texas schools managed to shatter them. The elimination of the NU/OU game and the fact that the Big 8 conference history was not carried forward to the Big 12 weigh heavily toward the loyalty that Nebraska feels toward the conference, as do all the votes that Nebraska’s on the losing side of.
shoot — tagged with wrong email
A fairly good blog post going through the myths of conference realignment with a number of arguments that we’ve seen here:
One thing Texas cannot provide for itself is opponents to play.
If Nebraska and Missouri leave for the Big Ten, then the power shift to Texas will become even more severe. But Texas cannot hog everything for itself. At some point, the rest of the local teams may come to realize that they are becoming patsies for UT.
Texas A&M and/or Oklahoma may conclude that joining the SEC would give them a recruiting advantage over UT.
If Texas wants to remain relevant, then it needs to have a competitive schedule full of exciting games. The best place for Texas to do that would be in the expanded Big Ten.
Or SEC or P16.
For what Texas is looking for, the Big Ten makes so much more sense, academics, money, and money potential. With the Texases and New York locked up, the BTN would almost HAVE to become a national TV brand, especially after they buy the Pac 10 TV rights in two years, which would get them on the West Coast.
I really do believe that Fox and the Big Ten schools are going to make a push for the Texases, Notre Dame, Rutgers, and probably either Nebraska or Syracuse, and thus create a network on par with ESPN, except that it will only cover college sports.
Fox will have an advantage on ESPN/ABC/Disney for the two most popular sports in the US right now, and that may be enough to close the gap in what has been a sports media monopoly for at least the last 20 years or more.
I think this is a lot closer to happening than anyone is giving it credit. This has to be the ultimate goal of the BTN, right? They’re so close to being able to do this already. They have leverage on both Notre Dame and the Texases by having the ability to destroy the Big East and the Big 12, and can offer both a ton of money, and a partnership to take this thing nationally to become so much more than just a money-maker.
I’ve been thinking the same thing about BTN challenging ESPN in the college sports space. Delaney said early in the process about possibly partnering with “dozens of schools”, which I read as a BTN rights expansion rather than a B10 expansion. PAC10 has terrible secondary/basketball coverage, and would be the perfect compliment due to time zone differences.
Bingo. BTN/Fox wins the P10/12/14/16 bid and sets up a separate P-Whatever channel brand. BTN still on the sports tier in the west, P channel gets added to the sports tier in the east. More incremental revenue. Simply rebrand one of the Fox Sports-Region X channels and force it to basic in the west.
Add to that Texas (and other schools that want to) will probably have their own channel that is an affiliate of the BTN. All UT sports are on the Longhorn channel, but BTN gets rights to carry any of UT’s games in all sports whenever they want to pick up a game for the nat’l BTN. The Longhorn Channel gets access to BTN content to fill empty slots. Several different ways to set it up, perhaps BTN goes to basic and the Longhorn channel is on the sports tier. Or maybe in Texas the Longhorn channel is basic while BTN is the sports tier, but all the BTN prime games are shown on the Longhorn channel (unless conflicting with a Texas game.) Or maybe they both go to basic, similar to a ESPN and ESPN2. Surely UT and the B14 will try for that.
The BTN/Fox family of networks. Similar to the ESPN family, but drag racing and poker crap.
Which would explain why ESPN see it as enough of a threat that they refuse to mention the BTN by name.
Oops, try again:
Similar to the ESPN family, but without drag racing and poker crap.
@PlayoffsNow Those Fox College Sports channels are horrible. They look as if they were programmed by rhesus monkeys throwing half-chewed banana at a programming grid. Where else can you watch nearly year-old basketball games from the World University Games? Or the Big 12 women’s soccer title game — from November 09? Or Wisconsin-Platteville basketball?
The FCS channels are useful as a placeholder for future conference networks, however. It’s easy to see them replacing, say, FCS-Pacific with a Western alliance network.
This would have to be severely limited, and maybe a unique offer the Big Ten could make, but I wouldn’t mind seeing BTN pay for the rights to a late-night Pac-10 football game of the week. That would be a natural outgrowth of the two conference’s relationship through the Rose Bowl Game. But going any further than that would water down the BTN and Big 10 conference brands.
It makes more sense for Texas and inevitably A&M to just join the Big Ten. There’s too many unknowns about the Longhorn network, and it ultimately would limit Texas’ exposure on a national scale because it would only be regional.
What I really think will end up happening is the Big Ten will use its leverage against Notre Dame by threatening to 1) offer them more TV money, 2) dismantle the Big East by taking 2+ of its current most prominent football and basketball members, and will use their monetary and national exposure growth potential to get Notre Dame to join.
Immediately after getting Notre Dame, they’ll grab Rutgers for obvious market reasons. Depending on where they stand in not just New York City, but New York State as well, they’ll have to determine whether they’ve done enough to get on all the cable stations in New York State and New Jersey. My guess is they will probably be able to get the bulk of NYC Metro, but will come up lacking in the rest of the state.
Regardless of the BTN’s position in New York, they still won’t add another East Coast school at this point. They’ll instead go to Texas and A&M and do the same thing to them that they did to Notre Dame. They’ll use their leverage against them by threatening to dismantle the Big 12, or at least damage it mightily, and they’ll offer them TV money and growth potential, both monetarily and in national exposure. During all this time, they may or may not have started the negotiations with the Pac 10 regarding their TV rights, which will conveniently be leaked to the public so that the Texases know about it, and they’ll be able to offer them a national product that will probably make it on every basic cable station in the country for sure, except in the Southeast where it might make it on the basic cable package, or it might just make it on the upgraded packages.
With the state of Texas and New Jersey surely locked up, the BTN will now have to evaluate their stance in New York with Rutgers, Notre Dame, and the Texas schools and determine whether they need further help to gain/maintain the state. If they decide they absolutely need a presence in the New York State, they’ll invite Syracuse, if it’s not necessary, they’ll get Nebraska for their national brand name.
With the TV rights to the Pac 10, the BTN will add another channel, the BTN/Pac 10 alliance, which will be what plays all the Pac 10 games, but will sprinkle in Big Ten content in with Pac 10 stuff, and this channel will only be offered with the BTN.
Once the BTN becomes national, it will start RAKING in the money, and Fox and the Big Ten members will start spending more money and develop more quality programming. Right now, the BTN has no need to develop its programming into what people want to watch. It’s regional, and I’ve got to imagine that it’s just about the cheapest channel to operate with the kind of programming they do have. But if they really want to be the go-to cable channel for college sports, they will have to offer a more quality product; they’ll have to offer what people want to watch. They’ll grab a couple big named sports media members, maybe a couple polarizing figures, some kind of funny sports show, if not all out sports comedy, and just like that they’ll steal college football from ESPN. The BTN will be everywhere, and I do think with all the California, Michigan, Ohio, New York etc. transplants that there are in states like Florida and Georgia, there’s a good chance that it even gets added on their basic cable packages.
The biggest downside to it going national is that they will no longer have the flexibility that they now have. They won’t be able to offer volleyball or hockey games ever, even though it could be awesome, because there just isn’t a national market for those things. The BTN is about money, and I truly believe it will make all the money they thought it would and more, but going from small time to big time is going to cost its price, which will be not being able to completely determine what’s on TV, but having to offer what people want to watch.
Texas may be doing well now, but they are currently riding the Vince Young wave of success. In 2004, OU was the big dog in the Big 12. I don’t know about revenue back then…I’m sure Texas was at or near the top then too…but I think sometimes they get a little too much credit as begin far beyond everyone else in the nation. I’m not disputing that they are at the crosshairs of the entire expansion debate…just that they’re not in the power seat.
Exit penalty from the Big 12 seems to be confusing (I think it is 80% of the conference payout if in the 12-24 month range but not sure). So in actual dollars for Nebraska or Missouri that would be roughly $6-7 million dollars for 1 season. Say the Big Ten wants new members to earn equity, maybe 50% of the incoming schools profit the first year is redistributed to original members, then 25%, then 10% and you are then on equal ground (TOTALLY GUESSING HERE).
SO Nebraska would take about 4 years to become a full equity member of the Big Ten. Giving up (B12 loss, buying equity) about $25 million in the process.
In the current Big 12, Nebraska pulls about $8 million per year from tv payouts. So over 4 years they would earn around $32 million from payouts by staying in the Big 12. With a move to the Big Ten they would earn (using current Big Ten numbers) $1 million from the Big 12 + $11 million + 16.5 million + $20 million = $48.5 million over the 4 years.
TO help with the perspective, regardless of conference Nebraska athletics would make around $265 million in those 4 years, without any conference payouts.
I keep seeing people worried about Big Ten buy-ins and Big 12 penalties….. but it is still easily a no-brainer.
2015 Nebraska Revenue – Big 12 roughly $75,000,000
2015 Nebraska Revenue – Big 10 roughly $96,000,000
If Nebraska, Missouri and Colorado leave the Big 12, and the Big 12 is looking for three (3) replacement schools, I think there are a couple options.
Western expansion – New Mexico, UNLV and Colorado State. This keeps Denver in the Big 12 footprint, and also expands the Big 12 into Albequerque and Las Vegas. These three schools could replace the NU, MU and CU trio in the North, also there would be a worse disparity in terms of competitive balance between the two divisions. A more likely scenario is to shift Oklahoma and Ok. State to the north, and have UNLV and New Mexico move to the South.
The biggest issue with this expansion is if Texas was uncomfortable with the academic credentials of its Big 12 peers before, it will be downright apopletic about being associated with the likes of UNLV and New Mexico.
Option #2 – southern expansion — I think a better move would be to add Louisville, South Florida and Central Florida. USF and UCF establish a Big 12 presence in Florida, which gives the Big 12 strong inroads to Texas and Florida — an enticing thought for its football coaches. Louisville is a top notch athletic program that bolsters the b-ball reputation.
The Big East is obviously you give 24 months notice and pay the $5 million. For the Big 12, it is a lot more complicated. The conference has 5 year member terms and the buyout is based on how close to the end of the current membership term the team gives notification of departure. Right now and until the end of June, it appears a departing Big 12 school would forfeit 80% of its conference revenue over two years. Starting in July, it goes up to 90%.
Regarding GT and Mia, some argue that they aren’t good candidates because they can’t bring their markets. While both may be secondary schools in their state and not by themselves able to get the BTN bumped to basic in-state, when you combine them with the large and growing B10+ alumni base in GA and FL you may reach critical mass.
Why not just cut a deal with the ACC to squeeze out the SEC in some sort of Eastern Alliance like the Western Alliance the Pac-10 and Big 12 are working on…?
(Obviously it’s too late at this point because the ACC just wrapped up its contract talks, but still…)
The Big East would certainly welcome a negotiating partner…
I have done this several times but still get no notifications, anybody got any advice? thanks
What is the feasibility of this scenario coming to fruition? Looking at what we know; it is seems to be less and less farfetched.
1. Missouri is gone to the Big 10 if given a hint of an invite; Nebraska still seems to be at least 60%/40% going given an invite (based on what’s been said and what we actually know). If the Big 12 can come up with a competitive TV deal aligned with the Pac 10, then Nebraska may stay. Colorado is being courted by the Pac 10. Texas is not linked to Texas A&M. Oklahoma is not linked to Oklahoma State. (Rumors were rampant about there being a state law binding the two, but if you look , http://www.lsb.state.ok.us/osStatuesTitle.html, that law is nowhere to be found). Texas A&M prefers the SEC. Texas prefers unequal revenue sharing.
Given these facts could this play out? Missouri, Nebraska, Rutgers and Notre Dame are publicly invited to the Big 10. Missouri goes immediately. The Pac 10 responds by officially offering Colorado and they leave. The Big 12 offers membership to Louisville and Memphis. They both accept. Nebraska says they will stay if one condition can be met; they want to play Oklahoma every year (this issue holds more clout than most give it credit for) which involves Oklahoma and Oklahoma State moving to the North division and Louisville with Memphis going to the south. This would re-unite the remaining Big 8 schools all in a single division satisfying a lot of the history that was lost upon the formation of the Big 12. Texas, however; would never allow this unless Oklahoma agreed to play Texas every year in a protected rivalry. Oklahoma wouldn’t agree to play Nebraska AND Texas every year so Texas threatens to leave if Oklahoma is re-shuffled to the North. Texas is once again appeased and there is no such reshuffling. Nebraska sees the writing on the wall (and with no true rivals left in conference with the absence of Missouri and Colorado along with the destruction of the Oklahoma rivalry by the Big 12) leaves for the Big Ten. BYU is offered and accepts as a replacement. The Big 12 now is not nearly as attractive to TV networks as they once were; the Pac 10/Big 12 media alliance doesn’t bring the money expected. The SEC starts to feel the pressure to keep up with the Jones’ (along with the added pressure of the new ACC TV deal) and looks to expand. Since the members in the ACC are now secure with a new TV deal, they look west at the weaker Big 12 and offer Oklahoma and Texas A&M. With the weakened Big 12 not able to lure a shiny new TV contract on par with the ACC, SEC, and Big Ten; they both accept. Texas is now the lone power left in the Big 12. The Pac 10 offers their final spot to the Longhorns and they accept. The final 6 teams in the Big 12 are left to join the MWC and CUSA or merge with the MWC to make a new conference.
Could this actually play out according what everyone here knows?
I really don’t see how anything has changed though…
In the first place, all this stuff about contract improvements is speculative until well into next year by which point they would have already applied to join the Big Ten if invited, so I don’t think the Big 12 has much to dangle in terms of incentives for Nebraska to stay.
And secondly, this is about securing the futures of their universities. We all know that Texas accounts for the majority of the footprint, and that majority is growing larger by the day. If Texas ever thinks about leaving, the Big 12 goes back to being the Big 8 essentially with a tiny % of the country’s population footprint.
Also, I think ACC expansion is somewhat of a moot topic, they’re happy with their TV deals, although they’d probably take a very hard look at Syracuse/Conn/Pitt. if they need to discuss expansion. It’s just hard to see the ACC needing to fight in an arms race when the universities are more content with where they are as a group.
Anyways, I don’t see Nebraska really demanding anything of the Big Ten. Yes, they would negotiate the best possible buy in terms they could (which may be free for a university of Nebraska’s stature in terms of the TV draw it would be for the Big Ten), but I really don’t see them putting up any other resistance. They would rather join as an equal member and possibly get some kind of limited protected rivalry but nothing as big as a NU-OU kind of demand…
I agree that Nebraska wouldn’t make any demands of the Big Ten; the demands I highlighted were for the Big 12 in order for Nebraska to stay in the Big 12.
Ah, my bad on that then.
The rest of your scenario is plausible although I’m in the camp that thinks Oklahoma sends out a line to the SEC as soon as Nebraska gets an invite to the Big Ten. Then the dominoes start to fall from there…
that line has already been sent. OU wants stability, and they want it now. There is real resentment over UT’s blocking of the Big 12 network and all the talk of the LSN.
OU’s stance that I’ve heard, right now, is, “F&%k U. of Texas, they don’t control our destiny” (but Okla St. might…damn it)
You really think it’s only 60/40 that UNL leaves? I’m assuming you’re an alum from your name and thus more in tune, but I’m getting it’s more like 90/10. The money, the bump up in academic class and just the sheer anger at Texas in the Big XII seems like UNL couldn’t really turn down an invite. Heck, in the Big 10, they’d actually be allowed to play Oklahoma every year!
From reading Husker boards, I get the sense that about 60% want to go to the Big 10, 10% want to stay in the Big 12 and 30% want to kick the Texas schools out and reform the Big 8. Since the last option isn’t happening, sentiment is largely in favor of the move (albeit grudgingly, in many quarters, I must admit.) A lot of Nebraskans seem excited to get all the games on the Big 10 network rather than shelling out $20 PPV for a game against a lousy FCS school.
I’d say the only thing keeping UNL out of the Big 10 is that they don’t get an invite because the population is too small. There’s no way that Texas is going to agree to the changes the Huskers want to stay in the Big XII.
For me personally, I’m 100% that we go. I’m just basing that 60/40 number on what I’ve heard from Perlman and Osborne. It sounds like to me in everything I’ve heard that their stance is this: “Big 12, if you give us a reason to stay albeit a more competitive TV contract; partial qualifiers, a renewed rivalry with Oklahoma, anything then we’ll stay. But if you don’t change then we are bound to the promise of a better future for our program in the Big Ten. Sorry.” I agree that there is NO WAY Texas would agree to anything that we ask…..so essentially the blood of the Big 12 conference (and also more importantly and fresh in the minds of Nebraska fans, the Big 8 conference) is on the hands of Texas.
Texas wouldn’t want a better tv contract? And I doubt they care much if you play OU. And aren’t the recruiting rules even more stringent in the B10?
I’m pretty sure the Big Ten doesn’t allow partial qualifiers either, although I could be wrong. I’m almost 100% certain Ohio State doesn’t at least.
@HerbieHusker – The only thing that you should be wary of, though, is that if the Big Ten is able to execute its ultimate plan, Nebraska would still be in the same conference as Texas (just as part of the Big Ten instead of the Big XII). The “demographics are shifting South” comment from Delany was probably the most telling thing that I’ve seen from him up to this point.
@ Frank – This is true, but the dynamics in the relationship would be changed. Texas would no longer be the loudest voice in the room; they would be treated equally with the rest of the New Big Ten, no more important and with no more influence on other members than Ohio State or Northwestern. We Nebraska fans/alumni aren’t upset because we aren’t getting our way on the rivalry with Oklahoma, partial qualifiers, the location of the conference offices, or the location of the championship game; we are upset because of the feeling that in the Big 12 conference its “Texas’s way or the highway” and if the schools within the conference do bow up to Texas then Texas plays the “we’re the biggest asset in the conference card” and sways votes using that power. Michigan St or Illinois would laugh at Texas if they tried that game of “play our way or we’ll take our ball and go home” in the Big Ten. It’s not Texas as an opponent that we are tired of…..it’s the way they are throwing their weight around and are being allowed to do it that has Nebraska fans ready to bail.
You are right dead on that the Big 12 is “Texas’s way or the Highway” league. There is resentment all over the league to UT’s “let ‘me eat cake” attitude. So much so, that if Nebraska and Missouri get in the Big 10+ and if they get a vote…I think they vote no on Texas.
OU is wanting to leave to the SEC…and it’s because of UT.
By the way, on the idea that Nebraska and Missouri would vote against Texas getting into the Big Ten if they had a vote – they’d have to be nuts to do that. It’s great to vent the spleen, but let’s be realistic.
Partial qualifiers has been a dead issue for a long time. Osborne may rue that defeat, but no one is going to resurrect it to stay in a conference with a lower payscale and academic standing. It would be pretty foolhardy to even broach the subject when Nebraska is under Big Ten consideration.
The rivalry with Oklahoma could theoretically be restored as an OOC game. How much interest is left, particularly if Nebraska goes to the Big Ten and Oklahoma ends up in the SEC is anyone’s guess. Mine would be not much. OU’s non-SEC schedule would be Patsyville because you have more than enough competition to deal with in the SEC. Nebraska would replace Colorado all the time and OU once in a while with a lot of meaty Big Ten rivalries. If I had to bet, I’d say they shut off the ventilator on NU-OU.
Adam Rittenberg tweeting Jim Delany’s press conference right now. Most interesting thing so far is Delany stating that changing demographics to the South is right next to the Big Ten Network as the driving force in expansion (reiterating what Iowa’s AD has stated):
So pretty good quotes there.
12-18 months of this, however, is going to suck.
@Manifesto – It indicates to me that the Big Ten is going to go after ND and Texas up until the very last possible moment. At least one of those schools is still returning Jim Delany’s phone calls, and as long as that’s the case, it’s not in the best interests of the Big Ten to hand out invites prematurely. I don’t want anything to do with 12-18 months of this speculation, either, no matter how much traffic comes to this blog, but that time period in the scheme of things is fairly small compared to decades (if not centuries) of “marriage” that will occur when the Big Ten hands out invitations.
Expansion news has been like a crack addiction to me…and I know that I can’t take another 12-18 months. I seriously doubt it does though…at least for the Pac 10.
According to the Mayans, this is all somewhat “moot.” 🙂
I guess my stance is this. I understand sending a shot across the bow to destabilize other conferences by publicly announcing intentions. It looks to be working. In fact, in the span of 5 months, without saying anything of substance publicly since December, they’ve probably netted three teams they wanted (Nebraska, Missouri, Rutgers).
But if they were serious about taking 12-18 months to even explore the possibilities, then why make it public at the start? I mean, why not just do the work, work out the scenarios, then say, “we’re looking to expand in the next few months.”
If they seriously take this long there are going to be a *lot* of raw people by the end. And not just fans and media, but peer institutions and conferences. Maybe Delany doesn’t care about ruffling feathers, but the university presidents should and probably do. Waiting the duration just lets every possible candidate get dragged through the mud because of speculation. All of the “wow look at the BigTen” hoopla is going to turn to serious media vinegar if it stretches that long.
I agree that 12-18 months isn’t very long if we’re talking about a partnership that should last decades. I’m just beginning to think it was a serious misstep to make this big public announcement if they didn’t already know who they wanted and could realistically get. 12-18 months isn’t too long to vet candidates, but it’s far too long if you’re looking to do it publicly.
I can see 12-18 months before a true opening day with teams in new conferences, but not that long before the deals are done and announced. Seems to me like B10 has this train moving now and will be forced to accomodate its momentum even if it is on a faster timetable than they or anyone else might like.
I saw a report on ESPN today at 1:30pm that Delany told the AD’s he is resigned to Notre Dame remaining independent and he respects their decision.
If ND feels independence is so important to its identity, or if they feel their identity is more secure if they’re school is kept isolated from the “secular” schools (as FLP somewhat derisively calls the BT), I think it’s better that they stay independent.
It would be fun to see the Badgers play them now and again, (Wisconsin may finally be competitive), but from the BT’s perspective, I don’t feel they’re an academic or cultural fit. Even the concept of cooperating with other academics via the CIC is viewed with suspicion. I think they’d be constantly tilting at Big Ten windmills, and this seems like a waste of energy on both ends.
And from ND’s perspective, even $20 or $30 million more per year (if the estimates prove true after expansion) is probably not worth the cost if having their football team play in a conference makes them lose their identity as an institution.
It is still a preposterous concept in my mind that a person or school’s identity could be tied that closely to a football schedule, but they understand what’s important to them in a way I obviously cannot.
If joining the BT is against the wishes of the students, alumni and supporters, I hope the administration doesn’t push it through.
Gene Smith, current Ohio State AD and ND alum, has some interesting words to say. Oh, and your Delany comments appear to be at the bottom:
Patience is all well and good for the Big 10, but they’re not the only ones affected. Other conferences are trying to conduct their business, particularly the conferences involved in new TV deal negotiations. Stretching this out is pretty unfair to the other conferences, yes I know “fair” is not necessarily a concern between what could be considered competitors, but I thought the Big 10 was trying to at least maintain an appearance of keeping things collegial. The Big 12 should not be forced to put up with another 12 months of Missouri’s antics or have to try and work out their TV future without knowing if they are going to be losing anywhere from 1 – 4 of their top TV markets, its predatory to stretch this out past this summer.
The Big10 said they would take 12-18 months to explore expansion. I fail to see how maintaining the original time-frame is stretching expansion out and thus unfair for conferences that may be affected.
Seems that if the Big10 simply kept quiet, negotiated behind closed doors and announced one day that Texas, Texas A&M, Nebraska, Rutgers & Notre Dame were becoming members effective immediately with football play to begin in 2 years, many would scream bloody murder for not giving affected conferences ample time to react.
Which way do people want it? Do you want time to react with contingency plans to an announcement that the Big10 plans to expand? Or, would you rather be blindsided by the news when reading the morning paper?
I also fail to see how Missouri’s antics are the fault of the Big10 or cause the Big10 to rush it’s time-frame. Maybe Missouri’s antics are necessary if the Big10 has already decided on 3 expansion members and the last two spots are between Missouri and 3 or 4 other schools. Maybe this is Missouri’s campaign to get into the Big10.
Maybe I’m reading too much into this, but the most important thing here seems to be: “Delany says a head’s up to conferences would be before a public announcement but not way before a public announcement.”
I guess I don’t see the importance there. I think that has been the assumption all along. Delany had said he would notify the conferences of the affected teams before the offer was extended, but that could be on the same day.
Well it wasn’t clear before whether he would talk to the Big 12/Big East before getting really far along with their schools or just before the offer phase.
I wasn’t clear on that point anyways…
12-18 months means Dec. 2010-May 2011. I don’t really think he’ll do it during the football season though, so I would expect it to happen in Feb. 2011 to May 2011.
That’s very far away. It’s hard for me to see him making these kind of decisions during the football season although it could happen if Texas or Notre Dame gets on board then. Essentially I’d imagine that those are the only two schools that could speed this thing up if they were willing to sign.
If they both say no, I think Delany would just let the process drag out till next year after the football season is done, and then either roll out Neb/Mizz/Rutgers, or nothing at all…
@zeek – Teddy Greenstein from the Chicago Tribune indicated today that it would likely “spill into the fall”. I agree that it wouldn’t happen during football season and frankly, I doubt that it would happen during the school year. With June 30th being the fiscal year end date, that seems to be the critical deadline for a lot of decisions and I personally fear that announcements wouldn’t come for truly another year if it isn’t done within the next few weeks. That might be the best decision for the Big Ten in the long-run, but we’ll certainly be pulling our hair out here.
I would hope there is good reason for delaying (Delaynying?) a decision. That’s gonna cost the schools coming in, and cost Fox, BTN, and the Big Ten itself revenue left on the table.
I sure hope when all is said and done that everyone can say, “boy, we’re glad we waited.” Otherwise it could be a missed opportunity.
Personally I think Delany is blowing tons of smoke.
The good reason for delay is the transactional friction in any such move. Consider all the hoops:
1) Gotta make an evaluation of the potential candidates. Delaney made a point of how other expansions were hasty and resulted in serious cultural and logistical problems (ACC, anyone?)
2) Gotta get 8 of 11 schools on board as to both how many and who to invite. That involves presidents and their trustees (at the very least).
3) Gotta make sure that the invitees will say yes. No more jilting like ND did (I know, they are applicants, but really the B10 will informally invite first)
4) The invitees have to make sure of their decision.
5) Doubtful that these schools are just going to jump in as full members with full revenues. So, there may be negotiations for terms of entry.
6) All schools have to look at their schedules, contracts, sponsorships and determine if alterations need to be made.
That’s a long and complicated path. To sum it all up, aircraft carriers can’t turn on a dime.
What’s the thought on this then? Right now, if we invited teams it would be for 2012, correct?
If we wait into the fall of this year and into 2011, then the earliest the teams can be integrated would be 2013?
At what point does the window to a 2012 integration close I guess is what I’m wondering…
I do realize that in the scope of decades none of this matters, but we would like to keep the transition as clean and painless as possible because that can be a scarring experience for all involved including those “left behind”…
Despite the ACC’s new contract with ESPN, perhaps its AAU schools are still in play as expansion candidates. If Notre Dame and Texas are out of the mix, which would you rather have as a group of five newcomers: Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Duke and Georgia Tech, or Nebraska, Missouri, Rutgers, Pittsburgh and Syracuse?
I sense the Big Ten presidents would prefer the former, or at least four of the five, with Rutgers subbing for Georgia Tech. Better academics and all-around athletic programs, on the whole.
You know, I’m not a big fan of the demographics argument (at least if it means Southern expansion). Main reason is because I believe global warming will become a reality. The southwest from California to Texas will become a desert (OK, I know most of it already is, but they’ll have major water crises in that region), and they’d need sea barriers to keep most of Florida from being flooded (and in general, the coasts will suffer the most from both rising sea levels and more frequent natural disasters like hurricanes). Big parts of the Sun Belt were also built on a Ponzi economy model which collapses if people stop moving in (and with the collapse of the housing bubble + higher temperatures + higher energy costs/natural disasters/water concerns), retiring to places like Arizona, LV, or Florida won’t be so appealing in the future.
That said, the Sun Belt is still the place to go for football recuiting for the foreseeable future, and Texas will still be fine economy-wise so long as the energy industry stays there (and I’d like Texas to join the Big10). However, I wouldn’t rely on the population trends of the last 30 years to predict the population distribution 30 years from now.
Are you the current president of the Club of Rome?
Even if global warming doesn’t come to pass in such an extraordinary way, the southwestern states are already running out of fresh water. Once the north gets its new economy figured out, the people will start coming back.
Getting off-topic here. The ‘we have water’ canard has been around for decades. As population and economies have grown in the West and South, previously considered terminal points for population have been passed and water is still available. Usage in the past was highly wasteful. Even modest conservation has stretched current resources. Even with almost 37 million residents, agriculture is the biggest user (and waster) of transported water in California.
The somewhat unsettling fact is that you can endlessly recycle the same gallon of water, as long as you clean it. Technological improvements have made this more and more economically feasible (and the shortages you reference).
There is one constant in a free enterprise society and that is that new technologies and innovations currently unconceived of has the ability to solve problems once thought intractable.
That’s why the 1975 Club of Rome report was wrong and is roundly ridiculed to this day.
Far bigger a challenge is a social and economic structure that is rooted in past industries and an old social compact. Good luck.
Not a Club of Rome guy; I thought their take on population was ridiculous (if anything, China will suffer seriously in the future due to too _few_ people). However, I’m not sure many people will be moving to places like Arizona & LV in the future when average summer temperatures in those places approximate those of Death Valley. Texas will get hotter as well, but at least you guys have the energy industry.
The “past industries and social compact” you’re thinking of in the Midwest is already pretty much gone. Chicago has the most diversified economy in the US. Can’t say that for the smaller cities in the Midwest, but other than a few exceptions, I do believe the Sun Belt will fare worse in the next 30 years than in the past 30 years. Texas has the energy industry, and areas in California (like Silicon Valley) are still pockets of innovation (though we’ll see if California’s fiscal situation will impact that). Atlanta and Charlotte/Research Triangle/NC have developed in to diversified business hubs, but big parts of Arizona & Florida were reliant on a Ponzi/housing economy model that’s not coming back for several decades at least, if ever (and they’ll have to deal with the effects of global warming). Meanwhile, that big stretch of land between Georgia and Texas (the western, non-ACC part of the SEC) hasn’t been developing (or even growing much in population) the past few decades, and I don’t think that’ll improve in the future.
I do see the Northwest becoming more attractive, though.
In any case, my point is that it’s just not safe to extrapolate from the past in to the future without taking impending changes in to consideration (ironically, that’s what the Club of Rome dudes did as well).
Water falls from the sky down here.
Couldn’t agree more with your comment on population projections. They are absurd and often engage in the fallacy that recent trends will continue endlessly into the future. If that were true, the whole world will work for Google in 30 years.
The fact that significant stretches of the South have experienced little population and per capita income growth (compared with their neighbors) shows how important economic and social structures are to growth.
California’s dysfunctional government and weak political leadership are more likely to repel residents and industry that any water shortage.
As to the applicability to B10 expansion, I think we can agree — Mississippi State is off the table.
Based on the thousands of posts already read, and the assertion by Delaney this is going to take awhile, I think I’m giving up on expansion for now.
Are you giving up on expansion, or, on reading posts about expansion? I can’t get enough of this crap!
Oh, no. I’m still very interested and excited about the prospects for the expansion, I just can’t continue to dedicate the time to read all these wonderful theories. My wife thinks I’m insane.
You’re fortunate! My wife knows, I am!
Heh-heh…Yeah, my wife now thinks “Expansion” is a stripper that lives downtown that I have this ongoing secret cyber life with. When she asks me, “Well, what’s new with this expansion thing that you’re on the internet past midnight reading? Besides the fact that the Big 10 wants Notre Dame and maybe Texas” and I look at her and kind of shrug, she just turns in a huff and walks away…
Frank – If the Big Ten keeps to this insane 12-18 month timeline and since you’re in Chicago (the Home Office), you and I ought to sue Delaney for intentional infliction of emotional distress on behalf all of us on the board (a special class), as well as Big Ten fans and fans of Nebraska, Mizzou, Kansas, Texas A&M, Rutgers, Syracuse, Pitt, & UConn.
UTx and Notre Dame fans would be specifically excluded from the class as their schools are probably the cause of the hold-up.
A mass intentional tort spread out over millions of people in over a dozen states. While the damages aren’t as great as what BP has done to us down here, it would be fun. Who knows, maybe we can get a taste of that BTN money?
Alan’s comment supports my suspicion that most of us who frequent this board are lawyers. 🙂
As to the above discussion of the need for more inventory on a Longhorn Sports Network, I don’t think that’s a major problem. Beyond the 1-2 football games and 8-10 men’s basketball games, there are 16 other varsity sports at UT that could be broadcast, and diehard fans – the kind of people who would be interested in the LSN anyway – will watch them. This is the whole concept behind televising the Olympics; in the abstract, people don’t care about curling or water polo, but if it’s USA v. Other Country, especially Evil Other Country, there’s suddenly interest there. Same thing here; if there were a go-to channel where you could watch Texas play OU/A&M/Tech/etc in something – tennis, golf, checkers, anything – at any point during the day, I think a surprising number of people would have interest in that. (Heck, I’m not even a UT alum, and I’d watch that.) Probably not enough interest for most people to pay extra for the channel for that reason alone, but the prospect of exclusively broadcasting a football game and a few basketball games gets you past that threshold anyway. We’re just talking about filling the broadcast day. You’d televise as many non-revenue sporting events as you could, replay them incessantly, mix in a few coaches’ shows and a daily Longhorn highlight show a la ESPN News, and there you go – content.
I have zero expertise on the technical side of broadcasting – is there some reason this wouldn’t work?
Well, the issue is how you would get it onto basic cable in metro areas in Texas as opposed to being put on a sports tier/package. You don’t want to build a LSN that’s just for hardcore fans of other varsity sports because football is the main product and the reason we’re all discussing conference expansion.
A big part of why the Big Ten Network has been successful is second tier football games. That’s probably the biggest reason for why its on basic cable packages in the Big Ten’s footprint.
It’s hard to see where Texas gets the inventory for that in order to really have a money making network that would justify the LSN.
But don’t get me wrong, Texas is the only school in the country with the geographic footprint as well as the national brand to be able to even contemplate this kind of experiment at this point in the game.
I agree that there will be problems getting the Longhorn network up and running, Even if you solve the inventory problem with minor sports, there has to be football content and one school can’t provide enough, especially if only one or two games a season are on it.
UT fans are very football-centric. Even their successful men’s basketball program is an afterthought to most of their fan base. It’s hard to imagine a network with so little inventory in those two sports drawing the interest of the typical UT fan.
I also wonder, as was mentioned above, about the rights to broadcast games. For example, if there is a Big 12 TV deal for men’s basketball and Texas doesn’t want to be a part of it and Texas is playing at Baylor, would the Longhorn network be allowed to show it? Or does the home team have the rights? This is moving into an area that hasn’t been tested before.
I mean, how many “classic” Texas – OU reruns can one really watch? That’s if OU let’s the Longhorn network show the games!
Apparently, Conference USA is publicly OK with having members poached. Kind of odd to me.
That’s just realism on Banowsky’s part. He wants to tell his members that (a) he won’t hold down anyone with aspirations of finding a conference with BCS-AQ status, and (b) there are “rising” programs out there that would serve as adequate replacements for, say, Memphis and Houston, if the need should arise, and he is the guy who can shepherd those programs into C-USA.
The Longhorn Sports Network is a HUGE issue. It’s even deeper than Frank the Tank has suggested. UofTexas seems to think that they can get the benefit of being independent (their own TV contract that they don’t have to share) and the benefit of being in a conference (built in teams to play).
That idea is NOT going over well with the other member schools in the Big 12.
I finally heard from my guy that knows a guy (yeah, but its a really well connected guy!)….Oklahoma, is trying to figure out what they have to do with Okla. State, and are looking HARD at the SEC. And it has everything to to do with the LSN, and UT’s blocking of the Big 12 TV channel. There is concern, that UT might block a “Western Alliance” type deal as well.
If the Big 12 can’t get more money from their TV contacts, they will fall behind the SEC and the Big 10 eventually. The schools staying think the “Western Alliance” would be a wind fall that would put the Pac-10 and the Big 12 in the SEC range of income per school….Unless UT kills it. Yes UT could survive with out it (Western Alliance TV contract or a Big 12 network)…but the other member schools in the Big 12 can’t.
I should note that David Boren the President of Oklahoma, said he thought the Big 12 would stay together. My source, “That was all posturing from a career politician, being a politician.”
I think I understand the Texas point of view on the Big 12 Network. I’m no expert, but I’m sure the costs to start a network are big, along with a big risk. With over half the population in one state, and most of the subscribers in that state rooting for Texas. They may feel that if the network succeeds it is going to be propped up by Longhorn fans with only 1/12 of the programming. Therefore, give the audience what it wants – the Longhorns on the Longhorn Network.
More than anything, the population gap makes the Big 12 unstable. Texas needs to be in a conference of equals. Baylor, Texas Tech, K-State, and Iowa State should not all be in the same BCS conference. All due respect to their supporters, there just aren’t enough of them to reasonably balance the conference revenue.
Here’s hoping that Texas, A&M, Nebraska, Missouri, and Rutgers (really, I want Pitt, but no new market) end up in the Big Ten.
In some sense those other schools are more valuable to a Big XII network than Texas (hear me out). All or nearly all of Texas’ football games are already picked up by the national television contract. They would have 1 or maybe 2 games a year on any network, Longhorn or Big XII (or BTN for that matter). The draw would be for the smaller but non-negligible number of fans of those other schools whose teams would be on Big XII Network. I’m sure those schools would be happy to generously share the revenue with Texas equally though, so no worries there.
You’re actually right on this as a major issue.
What a lot of people are not focusing on about the Big Ten Network and LSN is that the main inventory is second tier games for football.
Texas as the premiere national brand in the Big 12 is going to have most of its football games on national networks regardless of what happens for a LSN.
At this point the LSN isn’t as much of a threat because the problem is still that it won’t feature that many of Texas’ football games…
Yes…but where does all this “programing” come from?
You are correct in UT’s thinking that they are the big dog….but they are being self centered and short sighted, if they think they can get that programing with out a conference.
Re: Boren, I think we are underplaying what he actually said. It wasn’t just the usual boilerplate of “we’re happy in the Big XII” or “we have no desire to explore realignment,” all of which might have been posturing. He actually went beyond this to add, seemingly unnecessarily, (paraphrasing) “Anyone who leaves the Big XII will regret it.” A smart politician wouldn’t allow himself to get rhetorically boxed-in like that unless he had already made a firm decision. And, it isn’t clear to me how this finger-wagging would help his supposed attempt at posturing anyway. I know that stranger things have happened, but unless Armageddon comes, i.e. Texas leaves the Big XII, I tend to think that OU rides it out and tries to work within the existing structures to get the best media deals it can, which may include partnering with selected schools on a start-up network.
I agree; most of us believe that OU will not be a first mover and will only really consider moving if it looks as if Texas is going to move, which doesn’t seem to be going on at all right now…
If the SEC offered OU they would be gone. It would be a pay raise, and they are pissed at UT. Why should OU stay if Neb, and Missouri leave?
Why is OU pissed at UT? (Forgive my ignorance, but I really don’t know the grievances there…)
Same as the rest of the Big 12. Arrogance. And UT voted against a Big 12 TV cable, and wanting to go on their own.
When they did that, UT was saying, we don’t care about anyone in the conference, but US. That didn’t sit well as you can imagine, with the other schools, that might be thinking that part of the reason you are in a conference is to join forces and ban together.
OU (and from what I understand Nebraska) were left thinking “why is the amount of money we make connected to UT when they don’t care about us?” For the smaller schools, I think they realized they had to take it…but OU and Nebraska, being Big Dogs themselves weren’t happy with being made 2nd class citizens, beholden to the whims of UT.
OU may or may not be pissed at UT over the Big XII network (and their only public comment has been a surprisingly strong defense of the Big XII), but even so, I highly doubt they are eager to leave. Remember, OU’s primary recruiting territory is Texas – more than half of their football roster usually hails from Texas. If they went to the SEC, they would play far fewer games in Texas, and recruiting would correspondingly dry up. Establishing new recruiting ties in the already-hotly recruited areas of FL/GA/SC/AL is easier said than done for a faraway school.
Oklahoma had no problems recruiting Texas when they were in the Big 8 and UT was in the SWC. The whole “You have to play Texas to recruit Texas” line is overblown. OU will get just as many Texas HS players playing in the SEC.
“Pissed” may be strong, but the schools in the Big 12 I get the feeling are really upset by what seems to be UT holding them hostage. As for texas recruiting “drying up”. OU has always, and I mean always recruited texas. They did when OU was in the Big 8, in the Big 6, in the Missouri Valley. Going to the SEC isn’t going to hurt OU. I mean, Oklahoma is right next to Texas
I stumbled across this column at Yahoo and I have pasted the relevant passage.
This represents my experience with my alma mater — unlike presidents and ADs at public entities, ND is under no pressure to disclose much less to shout to the media how much money it is making.
The Big Ten reportedly handed out $22 million per member last year. Media reports have said Notre Dame receives $15 million annually from NBC to broadcast its home games each year. Richard Sheehan, a Notre Dame finance professor who has been involved in past negotiations with NBC, believes that figure is low.
“The NBC contract is more lucrative than pretty much anyone knows,” he said.
Notre Dame, which has an endowment of more than $5 billion, also receives $1.3 million a year if it doesn’t qualify for a Bowl Championship Series berth and $4.5 million if it does. It doesn’t have to share that money with anyone.
Sheehan said money shouldn’t be a factor.
“We lose half a million, a million, through the cracks each year. So a million here, a million there, I don’t think makes a difference,” he said.
Swarbrick said money won’t be a factor in any decision.
“Questions of this nature are too fundamental to be about money,” he said.”
22m in the Big Ten represents everything — fb, bb, licensing, BTN, BCS and so on. If 15m is low (posters here try to pin an 8m figure)and there is BCS (1.2), Big East is 2.0+. I agree with Prof. Sheehan – we waste the difference (if there is a difference) every year.
I am beginning to feel confident that this storm has passed.
The worry for ND fans is in some sense not the current numbers, but the overall trend line. 20 years ago, ND had the indisputably most lucrative contract of anyone. 10 years ago, it was nearing parity the Big Ten but was still more. Currently, it’s at parity or maybe a little in the Big Ten’s favor. Where will it be 10-20 years from now?
I’d feel better knowing that even if the Big East broke up that the ND olympic sports would have a place to go.
Frank, that’s another thing that isn’t getting enough play: The Morning After in the the Big East/ the viability of “Major” football-less conference.
Where would the other sports go if the BE broke up? I didn’t see anything in that article to address that. The B10 wouldn’t take them without football. Nor would the ACC or SEC. What’s left, CUSA or MAC?
The better question is, if the ND non-FB sports were forced to CUSA or MAC, would anyone at ND (aside from the AD) even care? So far it seems like most ND fans are willing to sacrifice just about everything else to keep independence.
I don’t think so, Mani, but if the AD finds it a problem, it’s officially a problem.
If ND manages to maintain football independence, I think it will be because we’ll join with the seven other non-football Big East schools.
Now that’ll probably still be a pretty decent basketball conference but I don’t know if it would be a major. It would also be approximately 4 lax teams short of eight, 3 baseball teams short of eight, and one team short for volleyball and softball.
Lax is a weird sport. I’m pretty sure Bellarmine of Louisville is in the same conference as OSU. The Big East just started sponsoring Lax. ND can probably resume independence there. It would be weird not to be in a baseball conference, tho’. But I don’t know if the $$$ would be good enough to support three more mouths…especially since we would be relying on basketball money to do it.
If I were to guess, we’d need the three best mid-major basketball schools with baseball teams in the northeast or midwest for an expansion. Gotta try to keep the travel costs in check. I’m also guessing the teams would probably also prefer private school, particularly Catholic ones, all things being equal. If not, you might as well just take the best three non-Philadelphia based A-10 schools and go with that. Why not Philly? I think ‘Nova would veto it.
As to who to invite, I’m not sure what’s more pressing. Is it better basketball teams to get more at-large NCAA bids, or better metro markets and ratings for the TV contract? So, just as an initial guess let’s go with three of the following:
I don’t know, my sister’s the A-10 fan. Dayton’s good, but I don’t know how desirable they’d be to the other schools, particularly XU, since that’s more Metro-Cincy.
If that conference wouldn’t be good enough, I think ND may yet go to the Big Ten.
FLP – That has long been my thought about ND – the survival of the Big East is more important than it’s letting on. The football program at ND is always going to be well-funded and it’s never going to realistically be shut out, but it’s a tough decision for the AD to (1) know it could make more money in the Big Ten and (2) if it doesn’t join, its non-football sports are at risk. The alums can afford to only focus on football, yet the university as a whole may act differently.
Still, maybe Delany’s comments today indicate that ND won’t come no matter what and, if so, an expansion towards Texas as opposed to the East becomes the new goal.
If the Catholic schools break off, my guess is they’d only invite other Catholic schools. So my guess would be Xavier, Dayton and/or Saint Louis. If ND isn’t part of this conference, they could take all three. Thats probably a step below major for basketball but not too far off.
Back when ND almost joined the B10, Notre Dame decided it would be a financial wash to join the Big 10 (that was their AD-their NBC contact at the time was $9 million, B10 was about $7/school). Since then, the B10’s revenue has gone up enormously. There is no doubt ND would make more money in the Big 10.
Regarding BYU and Sunday play, here is some information that has been discussed before, but may be helpful/interesting to some. As Frank noted, this is a non-issue for football, but it is practically a non-issue for basketball as well. The Big 12 basketball tournament ends on Saturday, and the Big 12 plays basketball games on Sunday every now and again. To me, its simple: just don’t schedule BYU for those games. I don’t think the Big 12 would have a problem with this since the conference tournament isn’t threatened in any way by BYU’s policy.
It gets a little more complicated for non-revenue sports, particularly for baseball, which is a pretty big sport in the Big 12. The baseball tournament currently ends with a championship game on Sunday. BYU simply won’t play such a game–they would rather forfeit. At the same time, however, BYU will also almost never make it to the championship game. The Cougars are normally in the top half of the MWC in baseball, and occasionally makes a push at the conference title, but only occasionally. It has not shown any ability to compete year in and year out with TCU, SDSU, and UNLV on the diamond. Therefore, any conflict here would be rare. That said, an agreement on this issue will have to reached prior to expansion. I would imagine the Big 12 would have to agree to play a doubleheader on Saturday or move the title game to Monday if BYU were ever to make it that far into the tournment. My gut feeling–and I have nothing to base this on–is that an agreement could be reached here largely because this bridge will rarely be crossed.
This leaves the truly non-reveune sports, where many (but not all) Big 12 sports involve Sunday play. I believe the Big 12 holds track, tennis, and soccer championships on Sunday. I would think that the Big 12 could move these events to Saturday without losing any money. The huge question (at least as it concerns people like myself who want BYU in the Big 12) is will the Big 12 be willing to do this? I really can’t say for sure. An earlier poster noted that the Big 12 needs BYU. Even as a die-hard BYU fan, I can’t agree completely with that statement, but I do think BYU brings a lot to the table in terms of viewership around the country, fans will live in Big 12 states, and good athletic teams across the board.
Another point that may be worth noting: if the Pac-10 and Big 12 do form a TV alliance, BYU I think would become even more important. BYU has a decent (and growing) alumni base in Texas, but the vast majority of the LDS population outside of Utah lives in Arizona and California. BYU would bring these fans to the TV sets by being involved in the network alliance. I’m not sure how much extra $$ this tranfers to directly, but its still worth noting.
The impression of Joe Schad from ESPN talking to Jim Delany appears that ND isn’t joining:
If there are two things we have from these meetings, it’s that ND is not really a target and that Texas (or some other sun belt schools) are under serious consideration.
That’s the impression that I’m getting.
Oh, I’m certain ND is a target. The ND-TX-7 conf games leak apparently touched a nerve.
But I have doubts that ND will join.
Milwaukee story about expansion meaning institutional fit more than just adding a sports team.
Adam Rittenberg expands on the population shift comment from Delany:
Here’s the thing about the “shift south comment”…I don’t think it means the Big10 sees itself needing to take new schools in the south (east).
I see it meaning, even with slower overall growth, the states the Big10 is already in should still grow at rates appreciable enough to maintain the current student levels (plus adjustment for inflation) and that those students are very likely to become large contingents in markets where the Big10 currently (or even after expansion) has no “university footprint”.
In effect, schools that aren’t national (Rutgers) will become much more national via the fact more of their students are likely to head south (ie out of state). Again though, this only tends to be true for schools with large state populations (already) and high enrollments.
To that end I’d ask the question, with Rutgers/Mizzou/Neb/Texas being “in”, what “bubble” schools are in states with high population, have high undergrad levels, and spread their graduates to areas not currently NOT in the Big10 (or possible expansion areas) zone.
Answer that question and I think you’ve found the 16th school (since ND doesn’t seem to be in play).
You’re talking about Colorado, right?
Maryland/Colorado if I am reading your not/not correctly. Even if I’m not these guys look good.
Actually it was a truly open question.
I still see Colorado as more Pac10 fit, but I really can’t argue on either account.
The only person I’ve heard talk about the Big XII going east to Memphis and Louisville is Kevin Keitzman, the same guy who broke the non-story last week about Mizzou and Nebraska “being offered membership” to the Big 10.
Everyone else I’ve heard has been saying BYU, Utah, and/or other schools to the west.
As a Kansas Citian, I feel obligated to say, again (pointed this out in the comments a couple weeks ago), that Keitzman’s opinions and “insider info” are worthless. In fact, it’s gotten to the point with me that if he says something, I believe the opposite will happen.
His insider info revolves around connections in Manhattan, Kansas and KSU people. He consistently gets things wrong (his sources said that Mike Shannahan was to become the Chiefs head coach back in early ’09, Gary Patterson to be KSU’s head coach in ’08, etc.)
Maybe I’m just being a hater, but it bothers me that the national media and this blog keep running with his MU and NU to the Big 10 story and other ideas he’s throwing against the wall.
Everyone is going to LOVE this. The Internet report that supposedly sent Delany off the wall was the drunken Big Ten employee story posted on the Northwestern Rivals message board (which I linked in last week’s post):
As a reminder, that message board posting said the Big Ten was focused on Texas, ND and Nebraska with negotiations about different types of conference schedules.
@Frank: Wow, seriously? That was the one that apparently pissed him off? Interesting. I thought for sure it was going to be the WGH one that went crazy last week.
The ESPN Radio in Kansas City story might have been a planted leak, if you subscribe to the Missouri being the bridge to Texas theory.
Interesting (if all this is true) that the Northwestern rumor had enough resemblance to real life that it sent the boss into a tizzy.
Must have been a fair bit of truth to it then.
However, if Notre Dame is now out, the BT can direct its efforts at Texas. The question is, does ND’s not joining change Texas’ dynamics?
The NU rumor made too much sense to not have quite a bit of truth to it. I don´t think many people, apart from this blog, however, realized that.
What I find even more amazing, however, is that Delany supposedly went ballistic about this rumor only to have his reaction leaked and this rumor confirmed by someone else. It was obviously only a matter of time until leaks from the inside occurred, but some of these people really don´t value their jobs . . . unless this was another plant of some sort.
Yeah, I think Delany exploded because he probably mentioned some kind of concession that could be made for Notre Dame/Texas and he really didn’t want that to leak out because it starts to show his hand…
If you’re going to treat the Domers and Texas with “special gloves”, everyone else might try to squeeze as much as they can out of the Big 10 as well…Even though they don’t bring nearly the leverage to the table.
I remembered reading the post and the only thing I didn’t buy was that the Big 10 wouldn’t want to hold a championship game. That part made it smell a little fishy.
I think there might be some truth in that report, but I don’t think its gospel. I just can’t see the Big Ten not adding a championship game. Too much money left on the table. I can’t see Texas willingly giving up conference titles. Just doesn’t make sense, However….
Now I could see two 8 team divisions (either pod based or permanent) with a seven team division schedule where Texas and Notre Dame don’t play any cross-division games in order to accommodate ND’s national schedule and UT needing to play OU and A&M. Other schools would play 1 or 2 cross division games that wouldn’t count in the division standings. Division winners meet for the Big Ten title.
Actually I can easily see the Big Ten scraping a conference championship game and moving to a 13 game schedule for everyone in the conference!
If I think about this like a college commisioner, Why end the season for 14 of the most popular football programs in the country only to have the remaining two knock each other out of a National Championship Game?
Why not extend the season one game, and maybe 1 or 2 weekends ( for programing the Big Ten Network ) for everyone, having no conference championship game, and ending up with 2 or 3 BCS qualifiers.
Say the last games of the year…. rival games, Michigan v. Ohio State, Notre Dame v. Texas, Nebraska v. Penn State, Wisconsin v. Iowa, Illinois v. Northwestern and you end up with an undefeated Nebraska and Ohio State and a one loss Texas. Instead of knocking out your own conference in a tournament you’ve played the BCS system and are now dominating it, AND you get more BTN programming, AND it feels like you just had 5 conference championship games. Think of a 6-1 Wisconsin that would need Penn State to beat Nebraska to get to a BCS bowl, or else they go the the Liberty Bowl. The idea is a WIN, WIN, WIN for the conference. Maybe one more win because a 11-1 Florida knocks out a 11-1 LSU in the SEC championship, leaving an extra BCS game for 12-1 Texas.
I could see that working really well!
That actually can’t happen currently. Every team is capped 12 regular season games, with the only exceptions being for conferance championship games, and road games at Hawaii. Furthermore, leagues can still only have 2 participants in BCS games. To change this, all the BCS leagues would have to vote to change these rules, and I don’t think the other leagues are gonna vote for something that only help the Big 10, to their own detriment.
The majority of conferences don’t have a championship game. They wouldn’t just be voting to help the B10+, they’d be voting to help themselves.
As lifelong Husker fan and proponent of the Big Red finding a better fit with the Big Ten, I like Patrick’s suggestion of an extended regular season for an expanded Big Ten for all the reasons he suggested. However, I also note Random’s concern on the cap of 12 regular season games. I’ve been trying to convince myself that possibly the current NCAA rules allowed an exception to the cap, besides the games played in Hawaii that Random also referenced… like a 12+ team conference has an option of a CCG or an additional regular season game for its members. Unfortunately, I am unable to locate any NCAA bylaw that specifically addresses such situations. Who can point me in the right direction to determine once and for all what options exist for playing an extra regular season football game?
I have five either with or coming:
and five without:
I don’t know how a vote on a 13th game will go. Didn’t they just put in Game #12 a couple years back? I wonder if the money situation is bad enough that the Prezs will take the PR hit for “exploiting student athletes”.
If the B10 loses the Game 13 vote, I think then they’d put on the CCG. I’m sure their preference is an extra OOC game early, tho’.
Strictly speaking, the whole thing is one anonymous, possibly well-positioned source saying that Delaney got upset at another anonymous, possibly well-positioned leaker.
I would laugh hysterically if “The Plan” was revealed first on the Northwestern board though.
And we thought the real source at Northwestern was sorority row.
On an unrelated note, time to put all of Columbia on suicide watch.
If there was a special football OOC rule for ND & UT, instantly they would be reviled by all B10 alumni. It would be ten times more caustic than when PSU arrived expecting all those football titles. Instant rivalries would be created, I mean at least the Buckeyes I tolerate even if they work for me. I would hire Domers & cattle farmers just so I could lay them off.
But a lot of those ranchers own mineral rights. Careful, the oil barons could buy your company out and clean house!
Delany´s comments today were probably the hardest news we´ve seen. Let´s try to read into some of the quotes:
Delany – Population shift driving Big Ten expansion study
Projected population increases from 2000 – 2030 in states with potential expansion candidates:
– Texas 12.5 mil
– Missouri 800 k
– Kansas 251 k
– Nebraska 109 k
– NC 4.2 mil
– Georgia 3.8 mil
– Florida 12.7 mil
– Virginia 2.7 mil
– Maryland 1.7 mil
– NY 500 k
– NJ 1.4 mil
– Connecticut 283 k
Texas or bust in the West? Gaining a presence in Texas is obviously important to Delany. Even though we haven´t heard any rumors involving aTM, I imagine this means they´re being considered along with UT. If you strike out on those two though, do you give up on the rest of the more stagnant states in the Big 12? Nebraska´s more national presence may help them, but I´m not sure where this leaves Missouri.
Northeast expansion – Apart from New Jersey, there shouldn´t be much urgency for expansion to this part of the country. And even with Jersey, I´m not sure if Rutgers is enough by itself to warrant a bid. Delany may be better served focusing on different regions.
Southeast – Apart from Texas and California, the Southeast is, by and large, the region that will see the most growth. If you didn´t take Southeast expansion seriously before this Delany´s comments, you should now.
Delany – “Some of the best decisions are not acting.”
More than anything, he´s saying ¨don´t settle.¨ And apart from appeasing us on this site, he has no reason to. Notre Dame appears to be off the table and so now the focus turns to Texas. While you´re waiting on UT and aTm, you are also exploring expansion to the Southeast – trying to find a feasible way to integrate North Carolina, Georgia and Florida with the Big 10´s Midwestern schools.
Delany says this decision is about institutions finding the best fit for themselves, not about conferences. “Institutions compete.”
The Big 10´s looking for like-minded institutions in fast growing regions. Once again, this points to Texas and the Southeast. The only schools that fit this criteria, on the Eastern half of the country, are UT, A&M, Rutgers, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Duke (?), GTech, Florida, and Miami (?).
Delany – “AAU membership is a part of who we are. It’s an important part of who we are.”
Along with the previous comment, where does this leave Miami? It´s a smaller private research university that´s not apart of the AAU. After GTech this spring, maybe they´re next in line?
The question is, what teams can we get in the Southeast that would help?
None of us believe that Florida would consider the Big Ten.
GTech/Miami/Vandy don’t really do it.
Maryland, Va./VTech, UNC/Duke are what you’re looking at but does anyone really believe those schools are in play here?
Personally I still don’t take southeast expansion seriously, unless you’re thinking of Maryland as southeast. Keeping to our rules from before, no one is leaving the SEC, so that eliminates Florida.
I wouldn’t expect the ACC core to go anywhere without one another. I don’t see Miami going anywhere, and even if they did I think there’s enough red flags to turn the Big Ten off. With GT you just take Miami and change the positives and negatives a little.
Yeah, I still think Delany is 100% focused on Texas.
If Texas says no at any point, I think Delany’s going to roll it in and possibly end the expansion talks early…
I don’t think we can take it as a given that the Big Ten will necessarily expand at this point in time…
If Texas says no, it’ll go to 14…. the BTN is hungry and needs to be fed.
Seriously, there is just to much money available to not expand. Maybe they go to 14 and wait for Texas / Texas A&M to make a commitment one way or another.
I think at the minimum they’d take Nebraska and go to 12. Great football product and destabilizes the B12.
I agree Patrick…I still think RU, Neb., and Mo. get added this go-around…
Why wouldn´t any or all of these schools be in play? The Big 10, academically, is a big step up from the SEC, and, from the ACC, it has research benefits the ACC doesn´t offer.
More importantly, every other conference in the country faces a ceiling in the amount of profits that can be awarded each year to its members. With targeted expansion, there is no limit to how high the profits could go.
How could any school turn down that type of offer under normal conditions, much less while under budget deficits?
That last post should read, ¨with targeted expansion, there is no limit to how high Big 10 profits could go.¨
I see what you’re saying but I think that we really would have to take a large clump of the ACC schools to get them interested.
I find it hard to believe we can pick them off individually.
I think I´d only consider the ACC schools if I could get a large clump of them.
I don´t think any of them, on its own, is as strong as Texas and could stand as a geographic outlier.
If, however, you can grab the elite half of the ACC and combine that with the Big 10 expats living in the Southeast, that might be enough to put the BTN on basic cable from DC down to Florida.
I´d be very interested to see Patrick´s numbers run for a four or five team ACC grab.
Four ACC teams plus Texas is probably the dream scenario, at this point. In that case though, maybe you start to look at one of Playoff Nows´ 20 team combos.
Michael – The reasons why no SEC team would leave the SEC are many and varied.
With the exception of Arkansas and South Carolina, all the other members are charter members with 76 years of tradition. Many of the SEC rivalries date back to the late 1800s. If you think Notre Dame fans are going crazy about talk of jumping to the Big Ten, just let the Gator Nation get a hold of that.
I know all you Big Ten guys think your BTN deal is THE best deal in the world, but the SEC deal is pretty darn good too. Most of you guys forget, don’t know, or choose not to remember that under the SEC TV contracts with CBS and the ESPN family of networks, the individual school retain local multi-media rights, as well as delayed TV rights. That means that SEC schools can cut their own deal on inventory that CBS and ESPN didn’t pick up. For example, in the SEC, college baseball is huge and ESPN may only show a couple games per week. LSU sells those games not picked up by ESPN to Cox Cable, the dominant cable company in Louisiana. For games not on TV at all, but filmed, SEC schools sell the internet streams, not the conference. What I’m saying is that there is a lot of money that schools get that won’t show up in a few weeks when the SEC distributes checks in Destin, Florida. Each school should get over $21 million, but Florida is also making about $10 million themselves on the inventory not reserved by CBS, ESPN & the SEC. LSU, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee & Auburn are probably taking in at least another $5 million.
That’s why I’ve been saying that Texas would be crazy not to seriously consider the SEC if they decide to make a move. Conference money is close to the Big Ten, plus they can at least equal UF’s take from the non-reserved inventory on the proposed LSN.
I’ve seen a lot of posts about how bad those no-good cheatin’ SEC schools are academically, but I think the academic argument issue is way overblown. 10 of the 12 SEC schools are ranked as top tier schools by USN&WR. That’s more than the Big XII.
Expansion decisions will be primarily football decisions. Acceptable academics gets your foot in the door, but football, markets and ratings close the deal.
What he said.
The only caveat I’d make mention of though is the fixed contract portion of this equation. I’m sorry, but I don’t care who gets added, I just can’t see ABC/ESPN allowing a renegotiation not even a year after the ink signed.
This means any new school, even one as big as Texas, is going to drag down the per school payout…and those schools that will be hurt most are those that are never going to get a great $5-10 million for their non-football sports programming. Just as OK’s fate might be in the hands of those schools, so too might Texas’.
And that doesn’t even take into account the fact if one schools is added, there would most likely be another (or more) to maintain some sort of geographical/division balance (which would only drag that per school number down more.
While it might be in Texas’ interests (even more so than I thought) to consider the SEC, there might be some pretty stiff (and unseen) opposition to any additions to the SEC. Even one as big as Texas.
Alan…Who knows, but I think elite academics will be important to TX administrators and alums…
PSUGuy – I’ve been saying for weeks that the only way the SEC expands is if CBS/ESPN agree to pay for it. Since CBS & ESPN are everywhere, expanding the SEC footprint is not an issue, higher ratings and ad rates are the issues. For that, the SEC needs to get at least 2 “homerun” teams to boost ratings even higher by creating even more compelling games. Given what the ESPN/ABC just paid for an inferior football product like the ACC, if the SEC added at least two of these four – Texas, Oklahoma, Florida State or Miami – current TV contracts would be ripped apart and renegotiated.
‘shroomgod – 90,000 people ain’t paying $100 each to watch a professor give a lecture about anthropology.
Obviously, we’re all fairly educated people on this blog, even though I’m quickly realizing that my undergrad degree in History from backwater LSU is worthless, at least according to several posters here. Education is important to SEC schools. Its not like the SEC schools are one-room school houses off a dirt road somewhere in BFE (well, that is true in Starkville). The SEC schools are not as well-respected as those in the Big Ten, Pac 10, & ACC, but the SEC schools are all solid schools. A move to the SEC by any Big XII school would be at least a lateral move from an academic perspective.
Alan, LSU is a good school. It’s a history major that we are wondering about!
Just kidding Alan, what is important is that you get to do what you want in life, if a history major gets you there….. more power to you.
Well Patrick, my History degree from LSU did get me into Tulane Law School, which was a top 40 law school pre-Katrina. I have no complaints.
Also, regarding Big Ten alums living in the South sending their kids back up North for college, I know that Louisiana and Georgia have TOPS and HOPE scholarships available for above average graduates to stay in state. For example, if your kid qualifies, he or she can go to LSU or any other public school in Louisiana tuition free. If the kid goes to Tulane or any other private school, the state pays a portion of the tuition not to exceed LSU’s tuition.
What I’m saying is that if Big Ten alum lives in LA or GA, you’ve really got to love some gophers, badgers or wolverines to turn down essentially free tuition for out-of-state tuition.
The state schools are a great deal, Alan. And it sounds like the arrangement in Louisiana is fantastic. (It’s very reasonable here in Canada, too.)
My nephew turned down a 100% free ride on an academic scholarship at UNC to attend Duke. Crazy. $50,000+ per year to wear a darker blue.
It’s unlikely that any of the ACC teams were ever in play, including Maryland, which I believe quietly told the B10 they were not interested. The many comments on this board about Boston College and Maryland have been “thought provoking”, but I don’t think they were ever in the cards. After the ACC’s new contract with ESPN this week it’s a dead issue.
Delany’s presser today was certainly mindblowing for expansion junkies. At once, it made it clear that JD is going to work on Texas until the last possible moment, gave credence to the Andy Katz “Southern strategy” story and threw several buckets of cold water on Nebraska, which is, alas, located in a small state without much growth. And from the AAU statement and the future- and growth-orientation of his talking points, I infer that Delany is no longer Ahab to ND’s white whale.
Or……it all more smoke and mirrors
I don’t think it threw cold water on Nebraska. I think that water went squarely on the northeast strategy though. If you were a school hoping to cash in (ie. Syracuse, UConn, Pitt, etc) it’s very likely ND finally saying no killed your hopes. Without ND there’s no real reason to go northeast, and now you see attention shifting (south)west.
Yeah, I think Delany totally blew out the 4 teams from the Big East strategy once he said “Sun Belt” and went to demographics as one of the two focuses of expansion, the other obviously being the Big Ten Network.
Agree…although RU still seems likely, Pitt and esp, Syracuse nad U Conn now look like long-shots…Mo. and Ne, still look solid, unless there’s no expansion.
I do think the NYC-surround strategy has likely been discarded, because Delany’s vision seems to be to “go big” (cold water on Syracuse) and emphasize the AAU (cold water on UConn). But it leaves RU, a giant school doing massive amounts of research in a growing and wealthy state, as a more than viable candidate. I also think Delany wants to do a solid for Penn State, and providing an eastern partner for the Nittany Lions would do that.
The Big Ten Network needs more inventory (events) to show. Therefore, I still think they expand, even without Note Dame and Texas. Might be Missouri, Nebraska and Pitt to make 14, leaving a couple of slots for future expansion.
I did a quick check on Google Maps and the nearest B10 schools to Austin, Texas (Iowa, Illinois and Indiana) are all about 850 miles away. That’s a long way to send the softball and gymnastics teams.
I think people are reading too much into the changing demographic comments from Delany and Barta. It is clear that the Big 10 is concerned about the future of the “Rust Belt” states, but Rittenberg as ESPN said “It’s more likely the Big Ten will become even stronger in the northern half of the country (Midwest, East Coast) to offset the changing demographics,” than add Southern states. Of course, Texas changes everything if they agree to come, but beyond Texas or maybe TAMU, I don’t see the Big 10 taking Southern schools for the sake of adding Southern schools.
The other comment that’s been coming out of these meetings is getting “like-minded schools.” That’s going to be more important than anything else, I believe. The Big 10 doesn’t want to change its culture any more than Notre Dame does. If a Southern school like Georgia Tech could become workable and add value, they’d be considered. But I don’t think they’d take Tech over Nebraska just out of demographic concerns.
I still think the UNL, Mizzou and Rutgers are the most likely, with the door open for UT and TAMU later. For all the talk about Rutgers not delivering NYC, I’d say there’s even more talk among the presidents along the lines of “You know, the State University of New Jersey is a lot like us.”
And while I think everyone assigns Colorado to the Pac 10, I think the Big 10 would have to consider it too. Another good school, strong in research and in a growing market. Currently 5+ million residents and the 3rd fastest growth rate in the US. Up 17% since 2000.
Wouldn’t like it, but have to agree that’s now a possibility as a long-shot….at least it would make for a good road trip…..
With the emphasis on population growth, the top ten candidates are now:
2. Texas A&M
5. Texas Tech
8. UT-El Paso
10. North Texas
I believe only the first three are AAU members. After that, you’re back to small slow-growing states.
It’s official then: Rice and UT-El Paso to the Big Ten as the best candidates that sound like burrito ingredients.
Texas and Texas A&M are the only legitimate candidates from that list (like-minded institutions). This is why I think the Southeast will become heavily in play.
And I have to imagine, if the NU rumor was true – and Texas valued a Big 10 with ND – they´d value a Big 10 with a SE presence even more.
Remember that a Big 10 + Texas could be looking at profits above $40 mil/school, while the ACC schools – even with their new deal – are locked into profits of around $15 million. A Big 10 with Texas + a combination of Maryland, Virginia, NC, Duke, GTech and Miami would bring per school profits to a ridiculous level. Even with ACC unity, I can´t see any of these schools turning down that type of offer – even above and beyond CIC membership.
Delany is truly in the driver´s seat here and he has no reason to settle. He might be the single most powerful man in sports right now, as he´s truly sitting on a gold mine.
We’ve already got all the Ro-Tel Queso dip they can eat.
Delany’s ‘Demographics are destiny’ speech today raises a new question: Are we still sure 16 is the upper limit?
My gut read is that the B10+ got a better response than expected to initial queries, and now has multiple targets in the South, perhaps even a shot at Duke and NC. Those would almost surely go as a package, and maybe UT and aTm, too. The B10+ starts to run out of slots, but getting into FL and GA would seem to be of high value. VA is fast growth, but that might require VT, too.
The idea being to get an in-state base school, even if by itself it can’t deliver the state, and combine that with the large and increasing number of B10 alumni for a critical mass to get on basic cable. Also being able to market the channel nationwide as a smaller but powerful and elite version of ESPN. Big time schools with less of the filler teams.
So could some version of my Great AAU Alliance/Conference be in play? Perhaps not beyond 20, because the current conference schools need to keep a majority vote. Could break up into 5 groupings of 4. Play 3 annually in your pod, then 2+2+1+1 from the other 4 pods. 9 game conference schedule and every school is played at least every third year. Delany again said today that they are not looking at a conference championship game, so you don’t need divisions.
How about adding:
TX, aTm, GT, Mia, Duke, NC, VA, MD, ND
That’s about as national as you can give ND for a conference schedule, but leaving room for USC, Navy, and 1 or 2 others per year (I’d say it is likely other conferences will vote to add a 13th money maker game per season.) If Virginia insists on VT tagging along, two of NE, MO, Pitt, and Rut could be replacements.
MN, IA, WI, IL
TX, aTm, ND, NW
MSU, MI, OSU, IU
PU, PSU, MD, VA
GT, Mia, Duke, NC
How is that the read?
The read is that the Big Ten needs to look at high growing states but make sure that each addition counts for something.
I don’t really see it as a manifest destiny kind of statement.
If 16 is the upper limit, and ND is out, then my guess on the target list is:
2 & 3) Duke/NC combo
4) Mia (though of course long shot FL is there was any possibility)
5) GT (or long shot UGA)
TX, FL, GA, NC = easily the four fastest growing states east of Arizona, all four already in the top 12 of population.
MN, IA, WI, IL
MSU, MI, OSU, IU
PU, PSU, Duke, NC
Mia, GT, NW, UT
I think that list is just about right. I´d edit it slightly though:
2)Florida (Whether or not Florida would ever leave the SEC, they are obviously the ideal candidate – how firm is the no-one-leaves-the-SEC-rule?)
3)A&M (With or without Texas, large AAU research school on eastern half of the country with strong football and great location)
4)Duke/NC (basketball vs. football)
5a and 5b) Miami and GTech
6) Maryland (as a way to bridge to the SE)
I wonder if there is any lingering resentment about the last ACC expansion? What about the possibility of Duke, NC, Maryland, and Virgina joining the Big 10. AAU members, maybe they’d be happier with more like minded members in the BIG 10.
Add Texas, Nebraska, or Rutgers to that mix.
It all depends on how happy they are together.
I know the Big 10 will not “destroy” another conference, but what if these 4 came to the Big 10 and asked. I can’t see the Big 10 saying no.
Institutionally, an addition of Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Duke and Rutgers would fit in well with the Big Ten, from the presidents’ point of view. All are respected AAU institutions, all have solid, well-rounded athletid programs, and would extend the Big Ten brand north to NY/NJ and south to the Carolinas.
As a Maryland grad, I can say that would erase the only problem with Big Ten membership among Terrapin fans — the time-honored rivalries with UVa, UNC and Duke (although personally, I’d be happy with the Terps in the Big Ten whether or not they came along).
As a Maryland grad myself, I would have expected the undergraduates to be against any move away from ACC basketball, and Duke more specifically. But I was on a Terp message board yesterday, and the comments were about 80% in favor of a move to the Big Ten…pretty surprising.
How is Duke so high? It’s a small school (13K) with historically awful football. I’ve heard often here how poorly they travel.
I’d figure including the ACC, the target list reads:
*Texas (50K, $12b, 18 teams)
*TAMU (49K, $5.1b, 20 teams)
*Rutgers (52K, $0.5b, 27 teams)
*UNC (28K, $1.9b, 28 teams)
ND (11K, $5.5b, 23 teams)
*MD (37K, $0.5b, 27 teams)
*UVa (20K, $3.5b, 25 teams)
*Mizzou (30K, $0.8b, 20 teams)
*Pitt (27.5K, $2.8b, 17 teams)
*Nebraska (23K, $1b, 21 teams)
*Kansas (29K, $1b, 18 teams)
*GT (20K, $1.2b, 17 teams)
*CU (30K, $0.6b, 16 teams)
Miami (15.5 K, $0.5b, 15 teams)
all numbers culled from Wikipedia, if you think you can do better…please do =)
and in approximately that order. Did I miss anyone?
I think the demographics thing is that the Big Ten wants to continue solid branding academically and athletically. The idea is to have the premier conference now and 20 years from now, not necessarily for the conference to start moving South.
I think what Delany is trying to say is that if the population swings South, he’s afraid that the alumni base will shift to Southern schools (your kids belong to the Gators and Seminoles). This is why I think the Big Ten is focusing on academics – great to go to a football school, but if the football school doesn’t have good academic creds, good luck finding a job down the road.
He has a point, and the SEC schools haven’t figured it out yet. The ACC schools have it figured a little better.
I don’t think these “demographics” comments put ACC or SEC schools in play to join the Big Ten any more than they ever were.
Or, to boil it down to a sound bite, “quality, not quantity.”
Something I’ve been thinking very similarly.
The Big10 doesn’t need schools in the south if it has loads of alumni that move south to find the new jobs, then send their kids back to the Big10 schools since their academics are better than the alternative
And before folks get up in arms, realize that not every prospective student needs to come “back up north”. Just enough to pair with the already large populations up north (even if they grow slowly, they’ll still have a lot of people) to continue the slow, but steady spread of Big10 alumni across the nation.
And if the BTN, due to those alumni in non-footprint areas, allows the Big10 to become a national conference (if only in coverage) it might very well be able to cherry pick non-alumni relations to come to Big10 schools…
I thought there was no chance of 20 when it was first suggested. Now I think their might be a small chance for it, but I still really doubt it.
Reasons against 20:
1) ‘First 10’ schools feel nearly outnumbered and don’t play each other much
2) Reached point of diminishing returns for the Big 10 network as they have more games than airtime on Big 10 network. They could launch a BTN 2, but that wouldn’t be as profitable as the first, so it would probably mean less profits per school than 16.
Reasons for 20:
1) Can bring a big group of schools together, like North Carolina-Virginia-Maryland
2) Having too much content for the Big Ten network might be a good thing, if each school gets to keep the rights to 1 football game and a handful of games in other sports, that might appeal to Texas. It wouldn’t be enough for them to have their own cable network, but they could sell those games to a cable outlet for good money.
3) Could have an epic title game if you went with four 5 team pods. Since you likely would have no cross-divisional games during the season, the 2 teams would not have played each other. It would be like a bowl game.
If you don’t have a title game, I don’t think you bother with pods. Just give everyone a certain number of permanent games and let them rotate other schools.
Or perhaps something more complicated, where they play 2 archrivals every year, 4 rivals 6 times every 8 years, and 13 schools almost twice every 6 years.
Every year you’d play:
2 games against archrivals
3 games against rivals (1 sits out)
4 games against other 13 schools
No on multiple games against archrivals. Michigan-Ohio State football is the best rivalry in American sport because each team has just one shot at their main foe. Yankees-Red Sox has gone from the best rivalry in US pro sport to tiresome because there are too many of these games, all on national TV, too many in relatively meaningless parts of the season.
I wasn’t saying they’d play 2 games against the same teams. I was just calling ‘archrivals’ the teams you play every year with no exception. So for Michigan that would be Michigan State and Ohio State; for Ohio State that would be Michigan and Penn State.
Sorry about the misunderstanding. I’ll stand by what I said about Yankees-Red Sox. Haven’t they played about a dozen games already?
He’s saying to have it like it is now in the Big Ten now but for 20 teams so more tiering…
I saw an interesting piece on today’s College Football Live on ESPN. Well, the content itself wasn’t interesting, but what was interesting was ESPN’s slant. The subject of the Longhorn Network came at the end of the program, and the announcers were all jolly about it. What they refused to say were the words “Big Ten Network.” Do you think that ESPN will have a hand in UT’s channel, and would they get involved to keep Texas out of the Big Ten and maybe put them contained until they develop a bigger ESPNU presence?
About ND, well, I would rather see them scheduled into irrelevance. Keep them out.
Based on Delaney’s comments, I would include more southern schools than just Texas. Some say TAMU, but if he is being truthful about not expanding just to expand, the cultural gap between Aggieland and the Midwest is too far to bridge. Unless you’ve spent time there, you just might not fully understand why the Big Ten would want UT to arrive stag. Academically, it may get the full 25 from Frank the Tank, but combine that with culturally, and TAMU is a definite zero. I am not going on a limb to say that, on the whole, TAMU students and alum will be happier in the SEC than the Big Ten.
Good lord but that was a silly stupid piece. No substance, just some snickering about Bevo. ESPN of course has been doing a lot to head off conference networks, buying the SEC (royally) and the Big 12 (cheaply) out of the idea of starting their own. But I think the piece was silly because the panel had no one with sports media or business expertise.
Sorry, I shouldn’t have used the word “interesting” but rather “entertaining.” Those guys are so dumb that it entertains me, and ESPN will not let them call the Big Ten Network by name.
Today the guy said he’d shave his head and sell his horses if UT joined the Big Ten. His reason? Recruiting. Not from the player’s standpoint specifically, but because the parents will not want to drive to away games.
Also, they do not discuss schools in this; they talk about teams.
I love that show. It’s an SMU guy and a UHouston guy saying that UTexas would never leave a Texas-based conference for a midwestern conference. How they manage to do this without any sense of irony or history is beyond me.
ESPN doesn’t seem to understand that Texas will still recruit 95% of their players in Texas and most from within 200 miles regardless of where Texas is in any conference.
If ND is out and TX is in play does Colorado make more sense as a bridge state, particularly if they are looking at growth demographics? I’ve always assumed CU was hands off as part of an agreement to leave it as a PAC 10 expansion target. In addition to a good TV market Colorado is one of the fastest growing States in the country, think its in the top 5. The alumni demographic weighting to the West Coast would still be an issue but CIC membership for a research school like Colorado would be a big deal.
I don’t think many of us have put Colorado on the radar screen but it might be the right time to do so if the Pac-10 doesn’t make a move on it.
I thought that too. But I thought a big reason Colorado was considered a lock to the Pac10 for so long was because of mutual interest, alumni demographics, research collaborations in place, etc.
Agreed, but what if the Pac-10 doesn’t take Colorado because of the Western Alliance?
That might make Colorado a dark horse candidate for expansion.
A Nebraska/Missouri/Colorado expansion would be a decent set if we aren’t that interested in Rutgers…
Missouri, Nebraska, Colorado, Texas, Texas A&M.
What’s not to love?
I really don’t think the Pac10 is banking anything on a Western Alliance…it simply can’t until the ink is signed.
They need to assume they are going to contract alone and that means they need new markets and two more teams to get that championship game.
While I agree Colorado would be a nice academic addition to the Big10, lets not forget its total population is 5 million (less than Mizzou and arguably less athletic draw) with more of its alumni supposedly falling in the Cali/West Coast areas.
IMO, it belongs in the Pac10 with another Big12 (TAMU?) or Utah (due to academics).
But isn’t that why we’d want it for the Big Ten. Colorado is the perfect school for sun belt alumni focus out west. If you make them Big Ten alumni, that would pay off dividends considering that Colorado is one of the fastest growing states.
Paul–Still think they’ll be at least 1 eastern school–if not, PSU would (rightfully) be pissed….
@mushroomgod – Agreed. It’s not really about giving PSU a travel partner, but there’s little doubt in my mind at this juncture that at least planting a flag in the NYC area is very important to the Big Ten. That points to adding Rutgers no matter what people think of them.
First you might want to see if you can get Colorado to care about Colorado. They couldn’t raise enough money from boosters to buy out Hawkins. They don’t sell out their smallish stadium. Demographics and TV sets don’t mean much if the demographic doesn’t turn on the TV set.
Not going to go into it, but not buying out Hawkins this year had a lot more to do with State legislative politics then it did with booster money availability. I will concede that stadium size / total attendance are below the current Big 10 averages.
As in they asked the state for help and the legislature, in tight budgetary times, had bigger fish to fry than Hawkins.
As in due to some “interesting” constitutional laws, higher ed has less protection then other major expense areas, and the administration didn’t want political heat that would come from spending money on a buyout (whether the money was from private sources or not) while they were fighting tooth and nail to preserve funding levels in an election year. Not sure why you’re so threatened by some random speculation, lemme guess, Nebraska fan?
Just engaging you on the subject of this blog post, underrated players. My position in this and previous posts when the subject of CU has come up is that from the athletic and fan support standpoint, they’re highly overrated due to little interest in CU (or CSU), more interest in pro sports, and the general Front Range outdoorsy lifestyle, skiing, etc. Neither good nor bad, just what is. On the academic side, they’re probably very underrated, and it all comes down to what mix of these elements the Big Ten ultimately decides upon.
CU folks definitely seem to prefer the Pac-10. But if a Western Alliance between the Pac 10 and Big 12 implies, as I think it does, that the Pac 10 will not take any of the Big 12’s teams, then CU might be willing to listen to the Big 10. And I think that CU offers the Big 10 a high-growth state with an already-big (and sports-mad) TV market. If CU is frozen out of the Pac 10 I’d make that call if I were Delany.
Barking Carnival has an excellent post about the truth vs some of the myths regarding UT’s cable channel and the B12’s decision not to start a channel:
Basically it proves that many of the Cornwhiners are FOS.
Huh. A Longhorn website says the Longhorns are as pure as the driven snow. Shocking.
I don’t know if it proves anything as the article has a little more spin than content. However, he did come to the correct conclusion as to why Nebraska wants to leave.
(edited for clarity)>>
Why are Nebraska and Missouri considering leaving a conference they helped form nearly a century ago?… They are concerned that if they forego a chance to jump to a stronger conference now, they may be replaced in that lineup and not have[n] a safe have if the Big 12 dissolved (unlikely) or diminished significantly in stature (more likely). It’s the classic “Prisoner’s Dilemma”.
rats… fixed the spelling mistake in the wrong spot it should read “and not have a safe have[n] if”
Are zings that bridge blog posts allowed?
I’m just glad a Texas fan finally admitted that the Big 12 is really an expanded Big 8 and that Nebraska and Missouri let Texas join their conference.
That article was odd. I wasn’t aware of the partial qualifiers issue, and he does explain one of Nebraska’s issues… the failure to create a Big 12 network. UT wants a longhorn network, and is blocking the Big 12 development of a Big 12 network. But now Nebraska, as they are ready to walk, can come back and negotiate? Like chasing the girl who is dumping you down the driveway saying you’ll change.
As I understand it, Nebraska was also upset that the Big 12 was a ‘new’ conference not an expansion of the Big 8…. so all of their records were wiped clean. They also lost the yearly game with Oklahoma which caused some anger.
I was under the impression that Nebraska and Texas voted together on most items, except for playing the conference championship game as a Texas home game every year.
Having a conference with everyone playing by equal rules and having an equal say would be great for Texas and Nebraska. I don’t see any issues or problems between them that joining the Big 10 wouldn’t cure quickly. It is no secret that Nebraska & Texas are the two big players in the Big 12 and lobby the weaker schools (Baylor, Iowa State, Texas Tech, Kansas State) on issues. Honestly, if Texas tries to lobby Penn State to vote with them, Penn State would tell them to GFY. Same with Nebraska. Pushing around schools with 1/10th your budget is nothing like voting in a room full of your equals.
“Honestly, if Texas tries to lobby Penn State to vote with them, Penn State would tell them to GFY.”
I would certainly hope so.
The partial qualifiers issue is consistently overblown. It would have conferred no advantage to any team over another no matter which way the vote came out, since all teams would have played by either of the proposed set of rules approved, unless of course a school voluntarily didn’t take partial qualifiers. Schools in a position to do that probably could have more than offset any disadvantage by virtue of their location and prestige as the number one school in a very populous football crazy state. The only real effect of losing that vote is that more players end up going the juco route and getting tutored to get their grades in line instead of doing the same thing at a four-year institution. Winning that battle hasn’t spectacularly improved the athletic graduation rate at Texas, so maybe it’s all counterintuitive anyway. None of which is worth getting in a dither about, or holding a grudge about since the formation of the Big 12. It’s a dead issue which at this stage amounts to, yes, whining about something that doesn’t stand a chance in hell of ever coming back.
I will say that it wasn’t just Nebraska that did well with partial qualifiers, they helped all the Big 8 schools. Plus there was some fairly substantial evidence that kids who came in as partial qualifiers did substantially better academically (with the support structure of the university to help right from the start) then kids who come in as Juco transfers. I’d much rather have a situation where the schools were allowed a limited number of partial qualifiers then a case like Prince’s last recruiting class at KSU where he took like 10 – 15 jucos.
It really was an issue at the time for Nebraska. One of their great 90s teams had 23 partial qualfiers. That was more than any other CONFERENCE in the country. Interestingly, the only 2 conferences that limited them were the SWC and SEC. The P10, B10 and ACC knew noone would abuse the rule. The SWC and SEC knew teams would abuse it. The B8 and BE didn’t care.
It was a big deal for Texas because it was a prerequisite for joining the league and Nebraska was trying to change the rules after the agreement was made.
This is also one of the reasons I don’t think the B10 presidents will admit Nebraska.
What is often left out of the PQ issue is that Nebraska wasn’t against the rule, they just wanted delayed implementation.
Nancy Cantor also served as professor, and later Provost, at the University of Michigan before leaving for Illinois:
“In 1983, she came to the U-M as associate professor of psychology. She was area chair of personality psychology in 1984-88, was named professor in 1987, served as a research scientist in the Research Center for Group Dynamics in the Institute for Social Research in 1987-91, and was associate dean for faculty programs in the Graduate School in 1989-91. She left the U-M in 1991 to teach at Princeton, where she was chair of the Department of Psychology. Cantor assumed her duties as Rackham dean July 1, 1996.”
Look at the options, since most of agree with the line of thinking that Notre Dame may not be on the table, what are the scenarios from here:
1) No expansion.
2) Texas (and 2 or 4 others).
3) Southeast strategy of Virginia/North Carolina (might include Maryland/GTech/Miami as well).
4) Around the edges: Nebraska/Missouri/Rutgers (possibly Maryland in place of Rutgers).
Those are the most likely scenarios, but when you really weigh them, it comes down to Texas or the Southeast strategy if you’re looking at 16 teams.
If Texas or the ACC teams don’t want to play ball, then we’re going to have to roll it back and look at the teams closest by or no expansion at all.
I think #4, around the edges, is the likely outcome. I don’t see Texas joining the B10.
The B10 will continue to play most of their bowl games in Florida. I believe they had four in Florida and one in Texas last year. Also, B10 schools should schedule more home-and-home games during September with teams like Florida Atlantic, South Florida, Central Florida and Florida International. These non-conference “cupcake” games can serve as “recruiting trips”. Michigan State is finishing a home-and-home this year with Florida Atlantic in hopes of keeping the pipeline open to the talent rich state of Florida. I believe Notre Dame is playing South Florida next season in South Bend.
Central Florida in Orlando has about 50,000 students, third largest in the nation. South Florida in Tampa is also quite large. Both of these schools will be graduating lot’s of alumni and will probably become sports powers in a few years given all the talent available nearby. Might not be a bad idea to try and build relationships, if not rivalries, with these schools.
I just don’t see the ACC play as being realistic at all. Yes the shifting demos are great but I don’t see those AAU schools busting up the core to go Big Ten. There are some blue blooded boosters in those schools that I don’t think would think too kindly of such a move.
What part of this would boosters not like?
A Southeast expansion would only occur as a package deal and would keep most rivalries in tact, since it would include almost all of the original members.
Of the original ACC, South Carolina has already left and the only schools that wouldn´t get consideration from the Big 10 would be Clemson, NC State and Wake Forest. The other members of the ACC are newer and less ingrained.
I agree with Rick. It’s not going to happen. I found Delaney’s performance today very odd indeed.
I’m not seeing a lot of people talking about the southern migration when it comes to this proposed expansion.
The fact is, there is a significant shift of population from northern states to southern and western states over the past 2 decades and I imagine that will continue for the foreseeable future.
Don’t you think that will factor in to whatever inevitable expansion decisions for all conferences are made?
Evitably Delaney talked about this today, ignore.
So originally (5 months ago) the premise of this blog was that the Big Ten would use Missouri as a “stalking horse” to get Texas. Now, it seems like that plan is in full swing, except Delaney has taken Frank’s Missouri and raised him Nebraska.
Re population as factor fueling expansion
“Delany pointed to two factors fueling the expansion study: The formation and success of the Big Ten Network, and the national population shift to the south in the last 20 years. Although a lucrative football championship game would likely arrive with expansion, Delany reiterated that it’s not a driving force behind the study.
The league could look to increase subscriptions for the network in new or existing markets, and it wants to maintain a presence and a brand in major media markets, he said.
“As far as the shifting population, that is reason, by itself, enough, to look at the concept of expansion,” Delany said. “In the last 20, 30 years, there’s been a clear shift in movement into the Sun Belt. The rates of growth in the Sun Belt are four times the rates they are in the East or the Midwest.
“You do want to look forward to 2020 and 2030 and see what that impact would be on our schools.”
What it may mean is the Big 10 is concerned to expand it’s footprint in states with large populations to offset anticipated future growth in the south. Perhaps like NY and NJ?
I think this means look to big new markets now and for the future. Northeast and Texas. I don’t think it means the Southeast. It means Texas schools as well as the “Big Kahuna” of NY Metro/NY State/NJ. The two biggest markets now and well positioned for the future. I just don’t see this as a move for ACC schools. This is institutional fit and markets.
How is the elite of the ACC less of an institutional fit than the Big East schools you´re referring to? If anything, it would be the other way around.
Without ND, I don´t think Delany has any interest in the NE.
If he can´t get either of the Texas schools or the package of ACC schools, I´m not sure we see expansion – at least for now.
Eventually, every major conference will have a cash cow similar to the BTN. When that happens, the difference will be demographics, and that´s why any new school must be an institutional fit, within a growing market.
And the only way to do this is 1) reach Texas, 2) bring in the SE or 3) get to California. When this whole process started, no one (except Frank) would have dreamed that these were possible. (1) is still seen a bit of a stretch to the mainstream media but is taken for granted on this blog. I think (3) is a pipe dream, but (2) should be every bit as possible as (1).
Re Big 10 strategy
What Delany is saying about population trends, markets, the Big 10 channel is providing a glimpse of a big picture strategy underlying a possible expansion.
The other part is geography and cultural and academic fit: who the Presidents want as their partners. And who might want to partner with the Big 10.
A lot of posters are providing reasons why Texas or ND or Maryland should do this or that in absence of any public clues of reciprocal interest and to the contrary public clues of “Thanks, but no thanks”.
What the Presidents decide to do is another story. However, if nothing else this expansion exploration process has done a lot to clarify who may or may not be in play and what steps those not in play may be exploring as they consider their own options.
Re Northeast and Texas markets (Rick)
I think the problem for the Big 10 is there is no indication that Texas is in play.
Texas has spoken of a western alliance between the Big 12 and PAC 10; the Oklahoma President has supported the Big 12; the PAC 10 has no motive to participate in a charade in spending time with the Big 12 discussing a joint channel if Texas is not part of it;
and why would the Big 12 commissioner say he would be asking members at their upcoming meeting who’s in or who’s out if he had the slightest question that Texas wasn’t in.
If Rutgers, Syracuse and Pitt can help capture a decent portion of the huge northeast market the B10 will be protected against the population shift to the south. But, that remains a “BIG IF”.
The only way I can see Texas joining the conference is if the B10 took in about 7 members of the B12 and put them in a Western Division of the B10, and that seems unlikely.
The one thing that surprised me most about Frank’s commentary this time was mentioning Texas Tech as going wherever Texas does. Strikes me as straight-faced humor. Have been following the ridiculous story of Texas Tech’s dismissal of Mike Leach with increasing incredulity, particularly the school’s invocation of “sovereign immunity” as a legal defense for their officials’ actions in this case. “Sovereign immunity” is a legal defense that derives from medieval English common law, it literally translates in everyday speech to “the king can do no wrong”. Texas Tech apparently cannot run their FOOTBALL PROGRAM in a manner consistent with common sense and decency and that is something open to widespread public scrutiny. Just what is supposed to make us think they are running the rest of their institution on an every day basis in a way that will eventually make them academically respectable? If there were a “Not Ready for Big Ten” comedy troupe, the current Texas Tech administration would take center stage.
Quick point: The Sun Belt line might be a head fake. After keeping everything so close to the vest, why would Delaney telegraph anything now?
More ponderous point:
Think about how curious the B12 meeting will be. It appears that no expansion announcement will be made at least until the regular football season concludes. So the complaint squad of NU and Mizzou have to deal with their brethren in the B12. And Texas will be under serious suspicion.
Consider this what if … The no option schools (TTU, BU, KSU, KU, and ISU) are peeved and have had enough of watching the flirting and possible disintegration of the conference. Possibly joined by OK State and OU (and encouraged by Beebe), they proposed dramatically hiking the departure cost for current members.
I don’t know how the by-laws work, how many votes that would take or how long before something like that could be implemented. And, such a move probably wouldn’t have the votes. But, it could serve to flush out all the schools looking to leave. Does OU have options, or is it stuck? What about OK State? Colorado has been moving to the PAC-10 for years, do they still think they have a chance? Does A&M think it can move to the SEC or B10? Schools that oppose such a move could be easily tagged as potential Judases. Beebe and the others would have a better idea where they stand.
It’s possible that the needy nine (all but TX, NU, Mizzou) are ready to put their chips all in on keeping the conference together. If so, what happens if the conference hikes the departure penalty? Will the schools flirting with the B10 have a new clock ticking? Will they press the B10 to accelerate the decision process?
There is this unstated assumption that the B12 is helpless and is stuck on some type of deathwatch. I doubt programs that have busted ass to become relevant (KU, KSU, TTU) are going to be passive. After all, what do they have to lose?
The Big 12 requires a super majority for any decisions, 9 out of 12 members. The problem is I don’t think it really is 3 versus 12 as you are making it out to be. Schools like Texas A&M and Oklahoma can likely get decent offers if things turn for the worse and the Big 12, and they’d likely be more inclined to vote with the other 3.
First off, I hardly made it out to be “3 vs. 12” — the 3 vs. 9 was just one ‘for instance’ — it was not the main point.
The main point is that the rump schools are not necessarily going to be passive. One way of pushing back is raising the issue or proposing an increase in departure fees. How each school reacts to such a proposal would tell everyone much more about the cohesiveness of the B12 than the empty propaganda coming from the ADs and chancellors.
Texas, NU, Mizzou against the rest is one possibility.
Here’s another: Due to state politics, desire to stay pre-eminent in its own conference, potential profit of its own cable TV network, Texas decides to stay and make the B12 work. Now it’s 10 vs. 2 (maybe Colorado on the outside). How is that going to be for NU and Mizzou?
I obviously meant 3 vs. 9. I was just responding to your post where you asked what it takes to get things done in the Big 12. It is a super majority 9 schools. This is why it is difficult to get things done and difficult to make changes to established rules in the conference. I don’t think there are 9 schools that would be willing to raise the departure fees, because at least 6 of them see very likely scenarios where they themselves could be leaving in the near future.
The 10 versus 2 scenario changes things. I don’t think an increased buyout is of any concern for Nebraska, but it could be for Missouri. I would still be surprised if it gets 9 votes though as again schools like OU, Colorado, Texas A&M, and even Kansas to a certain extent realize they will likely have other options.
How’s that going to be? Hopefully, we’ll get the Big Ten and they’ll still get Texas. Even if we have to pay extortion.
Who is we?
I would imagine the big money guys who are going to get the arm put on them to tide the two alleged invitees over any financial rough patches. I’m not one of them, so it’s a conversational “we”.
Sorry I didn’t read all the comments and I don’t know if anybody mentions this, but I think maybe the second part of that post is the one that upset Delany. Quote:
“Finally, the Big East is essentially pushing ND to discussions with the Big Ten. The Big East has presented an ultimatum to ND to play football or get out of the conference for the other sports in order to protect the integrity of the remainder of the conference. Apparently discussions have taken place between the Big Ten and the Big East, and the current understanding is that the Big Ten will not accept any other Big East schools if ND joins the Big Ten.”
Re Big East pressuring ND (mmc22)
The idea that the Big East with 8 BB schools including ND and SU and Pitt is going to issue an “ultimatum” to ND makes that specific rumor beyond credibility.
Not if it comes with a guaranty from B10 of not touching that conference. Remember the football coaches are already pushing for it.
It assumes that:
1. The Catholic schools would prefer USF and Cincinnati to ND.
2. That Rutgers, Syracuse, and Pitt would sacrifice their own Big Ten ambitions to stick around with lower paydays and less prestige in the Big East.
That was the only part of the story I wasn’t quite buying. At best, I think that the B10 floated the idea, and the BE said they’ll take it to their respective brass.
Re ND being pressured by the Big East (mmc22)
“Remember the football coaches are already pushing for it”
There was an article where the coach at UConn wanted such an approach.
The point remains that the BB schools including ND have 8 votes and I doubt SU, Pitt or RU would be part of such an effort.
If you have a source for your statement that all the football coaches are pushing for it, please provide source. Thanks.
@C: Randy Edsall said it. But he didn’t say “all” the football coaches, just the coaches. I doubt very much Schiano or Wanny agree with him. Just google Randy Edsal, ND, Big Ten and there are plenty of references to his comments. I think he was making a general statement and over stating the facts.
I can play the same game of “if you have a source please provide it” too with your argument. At this moment all this is speculation. At least in my argument there was a coach that was talking about and don’t think he’s the only one thinking that way. In regards with Syracuse, Pitt and Rutgers I think only Rutgers has a real chance of joining the other too unfortunately not so much. Think about it, this is THE ONLY WAY to save BE conference and the deal is with the BE not with the catholic basketball schools which can be left out in the cold if the football schools go somewhere else. Oh! One more think, ND can leave anyway.
Re Big East pressuring ND
I sincerely doubt anyone believes ND is going to join the Big East for football.
And it appears ND is not joining the Big 10 as a member.
The other 7 BB schools will be ND’s partners if the Big East football schools split.
Are they seriously going to vote to issue an ultimatum to ND?
Even if ND left, what is to prevent the football schools from splitting from the BB schools?
Then the BB schools have to form their own conference without ND. How is that in their interest?
I have no idea who in the Big East may or may not be invited into the Big 10.
Regardless, using your own logic, why would RU support an ultimatum if the deal was that ND was the only team that would be taken?
Further a decision by the Big East to issue an ultimatum against ND is not a staff decision. Only the Presidents could do that.
Do you seriously believe the Big East Presidents including the 7 BB schools and RU (8 votes) voted to issue an ultimatum to ND without a single credible article?
Of course he isn’t the only one. The message boards are full of fans yelling the same thing. But this isn’t their call.
1. The Big East that would be doing the negotiating is the full Big East. ND and the Catholic schools still have a full stake in the membership, even though they don’t get any football money, IIRC.
2. You’re assuming that the Football Schools are willing to jettison their basketball rivalries with Georgetown, Villanova, and links to NYC (St. John’s) and Chicago (ND, DePaul). The reason the Big East exists as a 16 team conference is because of the knowledge that the only some of the great Northeastern basketball schools have FBS football, and those schools need quality opponents in both sports.
3. ND alone can be replaced in basketball and Olympic sports. Maybe not well, but it is doable. The thing is, the BE would still be vulnerable to another ACC expansion or potentially a SEC expansion.
Sorry, I’m just not seeing the Big East saying this early in the negotiations for ND to GTFO. Especially since ND seemed pretty confident that Independence was still a usable option. For it to be usable, ND would have to stay connected to a non-football major(ish) conference.
Let me ask you this; why will J. Delany be upset for a leak about possible talk between B10 and Texas, ND and Nebraska? We all know these are the main targets of B10, we all assume that some back door talks have been initiated. Tell me, what’s the big deal? The 7-8 conference games think. If that is true how that will affect the negotiations right now? If that is true, I can see J. Delany sending an e-mail to the involved parts asking them to put a lid on it, not make him “livid”.
In the other hand, if the pact between B10 and BE is true and has leaked-out, that is a very, very bad problem. I’m not saying that is true or not, but one can see my point here. This to me looks like one of those secret deals that we will never find out about. A leak of this magnitude will make J. Delany “livid” and can have a big impact in the expansion’s talks.
I’m not one those fans yelling about this kind of thinks on the internet, I don’t even care if ND joins or not the B10, but don’t think for a minute that a pact like that will be brought up for a vote. It could only work if is between J. Delany and J. Marinatto and if memory serve me correctly, wasn’t J. Marinatto a protégé of J. Delany? He can tell ND that J. Delany announced him about a possible raid of BE, which will not be a lie, and scare them into leaving on their own. Again I’m not implying this is true or not I’m just guessing here. J. Marinatto job here is to save BE not ND independence and in doing that he needs to sacrifice something and sometimes maybe even make a pact with the devil. You will be surprise what people will do when they’re scare.
Now I hope you are not that naive to think that the catholic schools will put ND in front of their own good, or that these types of deals have never happened. If push comes to shove, BE can dump them and focus in becoming a strong, solid conference for both football and basketball. Tell me, who is the stronger basketball conference here?
A) Syracuse, Pittsburg, West Virginia, Connecticut, Cincinnati, Louisville, South Florida, Rutgers, or
B) Georgetown, Villanova, Providence, Marquette, DePaul, Seton Hall, St. John’s
I can see at least 6 very good teams in group “A”. They can add a couple more teams for football without caring too much about basketball and still have a solid basketball conference.
I hope you here kidding when you said that St. John’s delivers NYC and DePaul delivers Chicago. If not, following your logic, BE can add Toledo and have both Ohio and Michigan delivered. Outside of their alumni not too many really care about those types of schools and even they usually have a big time college football program that they will follow.
I don’t want to argue this to death because I have no inside information and after all these are internet rumors and nothing else, even the so call J. Delany’s “staff meeting” is nothing more than a “I know somebody that knows somebody” type of think.
If Delaney and Marinatto think they can buffalo ND with that, both of them are less savvy than I thought.
Not having a top-flight football team limits each of the Catholic Big East schools. They are all brutally aware of the fact that they are lucky to be in a BCS conference as we start this brave new world of College sports. Furthermore, they know they will never be in another hybrid conference if this one breaks up. They have to wonder if any non-football conference will automatically be a midmajor.
I don’t think the Catholic schools will fall on their swords for ND. Nor do I (or Frank) believe that the hybrid Big East will remain like that forever. If the football schools leave, they’ll join with other football schools. If the basketball schools leave, they’ll join a midmajor. The Catholic schools only real chance to remain in a conference that annually receives multiple NCAA bids is to hang together. ND may not be the greatest basketball school in the Big East, but they are a name program and that counts for something.
You are correct that lately the football schools have been doing better than the parochials in basketball. But I don’t think that Providence, Seton Hall, Marquette, DePaul, and St. John believe that they will always be in a league with UCONN and Syracuse. When the league splits, they’ll need all the help they can get to stay on TV and in the tournament committee’s good graces.
I never said any Catholic school “brought” their markets. All I’m saying is that they let the other schools get a foot in the door recruiting-wise via the exposure. That’s why ND was brought in, IIRC.
One other think about the future of BTN, while everybody is looking at the population growth of Texas and Florida and Southern states in general and sees this is a bad thing for B10, I actually think that will help BTN in becoming a national TV channel more than expansion. Just ask yourself; how will Florida or Texas population grow so much in the next 20 years? The answer is simple, through migration. Where are those people coming from? Rust belt states. Which colleges are they rooting for? What sport channel will they want to watch on TV? The answer is simple; the one they were used to before and covers their favorite college, BTN.
@mmc22, you certainly have a point there, but frankly there is a case to be made for extending the Big Ten presence to either Texas (with Texas and Texas A&M) or to Georgia/Florida (with Georgia Tech and Miami) or to the already heavily populated northeast (Syracuse, Rutgers and UConn/or Maryland and Boston College). Nebraska I can see as a national brand name, but the excitement over schools like Missouri, Pitt and (especially) Kansas may be overblown due to limited market improvement. One would have to assume most of the Big Ten graduates moving to the sun belt are not going to be sending their sons and daughters to college back up north, so the long term prospects for the Big Ten as a purely midwestern conference are not really that promising. Think Delany is trying to get people thinking in a way that serves the long term interests of the conference and doesn’t just bolster the balance sheet temporarily for the next five or ten years.
I don’t think if you go south you’ll die in 5-10 years and you omitted one important think. BTN has to penetrate that market once. After they get on basic cable I don’t think they will be kicked out 20-25 years later. Remember at that time B10 will have probably 16 strong schools with a lot of sport on its schedule plus people will get used to it. I’m not saying this will be enough to penetrate those markets, but will definitely help more than people are giving it credit here.
I wouldn’t assume that so much (regarding the number of Big10 alumni sending kids back to Big10 schools).
While I imagine the choice will largely the kids’ choice the fact is with the BTN (and mom/dad pushing) those kids will likely end up rooting for the Big10 in some way and because of that familiarity they’ll know the academic prestige of the Big10 schools.
Iowa and Wisconsin won’t be some “faceless schools in the mid-west”, they’ll be very good schools with athletic pedigrees that are true options for college (especially if the students want to get away from the folks!).
Besides, even if only 25% of alumni send kids back (and mind you PSU prides itself on 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc generation students so this number IMO is low) that’s a large number of people that can (and will) offset almost any forseeable population growth differential (based on %’s that is).
@PSUGuy accept the point about Big Ten alumni carrying their loyalties to other parts of the country. However, just as an example, if the Big Ten expands to states like New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, that would serve to intensify the loyalty and following of Penn State grads who have migrated there. Then kids of PSU alumni would have the choice of going back to dear old dad’s/mom’s school or attending the Big Ten university in their own state. Penn State is doing a pretty good job of anchoring the Big Ten out east, but that doesn’t mean the conference couldn’t help itself by growing (some more) outside of the midwest. The last expansion is a pretty good example of that, actually.
Totally agree, which is why I’ve never thought the addition of Cuse, UConn, and Rutgers was as bad a play as some make it out to be.
“how will Florida or Texas population grow so much in the next 20 years? The answer is simple, through migration”
A good deal of the growth in US population will be from immigrants and their children. Much of the population growth in Texas and the 2 coasts will be from this source, not from midwest migration. If everything stays the same, their first introduction to college football will be in the Pac 10, SEC, Big 12, or even Big East conferences.
Then were are all those midwesterns going? I look at Iowa on that chart and their population will be the same 20 years from now as is today. This is a trend highly influenced by the bad economy, but as soon as the economy is starting to grow again the tide can change directions. Remember not long ago people were going north to find jobs.
Also, Florida will have a 50% increase in population, if all that is from imigrants imagine the political and economical problems they will have (think Arizona today). You can’t sustain such a big growth without a comparable job market growth and more and more latino imigrants will keep moving north in hunt for a job.
Another reason of the massive migration south was the relatively cheap house market. You could’ve left your more expansive home here and go down south and buy a similar one at half price which will have allowed you to get a job that pays you less money. Now that disparity is gone.
This is why I think this prognosis is wrong or at least exaggerated. People will go were the job are, especially imigrants, and I doubt Florida will have a 50% increase in job market and the midwestern states will stagnate and please stop bringing-up the cold winters argument. We are not really frizzing to death here.
Now if the prognosis is correct probably half of that number will be made of midwestern people.
“Then were are all those midwesterns going? I look at Iowa on that chart and their population will be the same 20 years from now as is today.”
The population in the midwest will mostly stay in the midwest. The native-born population is pretty stable; it’s growing at a small rate. Immigration, and the children of immigrants, has been the chief driving force behind US population growth.
I tried to look up some reference materials on this. I found lots of sources using it to try to make some sort of political point, but I’ll cite this editorial:
“Native-born Americans have only about two children on average, which makes for a roughly stable population over time. But with an estimated 1.5 million legal and illegal immigrants settling in the country each year, and about 900,000 births to these immigrants each year, immigration directly and indirectly accounts for at least three-fourths of U.S. population growth.”
Yeah, some of the population growth on the coasts and southwest is from migrating northerners, but it’s mostly immigrants. I don’t want to make any kind of political issue of this; just want to point out that they won’t have any ties to the current Big 10 footprint.
Just after I posted that I found this article by USA Today citing a Pew research report:
“New immigrants and their children and grandchildren born in the USA will account for 82% of the population increase from 2005 to 2050.”
Now, I think any projection for 2050 is going to be wildly off in one direction or another. However, it does show that our immigration level is driving our nation’s population growth.
Watching a couple minutes of Delany´s talk here: http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/news/story?id=5199145
I got the sense that he sees the college landscape as a sort of free market. He stressed that this is not about conference vs conference but instead institution vs. institution. He mentioned that there have been 252 conference changes throughout Division 1 and that only three conferences have remained constant (the Pac 10, the Ivy League and the West Coast Athletic Conference). The college landscape then is fluid and reflects changes over time, and the general convergence of similarly-minded institutions is natural and expected, especially now that geography is no longer such a deterrent.
Think about this idea for a minute. Delany is saying that change happens, rivalries and traditions evolve and similar institutions converge. The question then is how Delany sees the Big 10 and what institutions are so similarly minded.
From his emphasis on AAU schools and the general prestige of the CIC, I´d imagine he sees the Big 10 as the elite conference of large, research institutions in the Eastern half of the US. In this sense, I don´t think he´s going to be tied to geography – at least from a distance stand point. I also don´t think he sees anything wrong with significant conference reorganization.
I think this lends a lot of credence to Texas´ candidacy, as well as candidates from conferences we´d previously seen as untouchable. If the Big 10 is the elite conference (on the Eastern half of the country) for large research schools, then it makes sense for a school like Maryland, North Carolina, or even Florida to eventually become members.
The fact that Delany´s sitting on a gold mine only serves to expedite this process.
Here’s my problem with what you’re saying…
I think schools like Maryland and NC and Florida are a pipedream. They aren’t going anywhere….but if they were, you’re adding schools whose interests are not necessarily the same as those of the current 11 instituitions.
How can the Big Ten schools play a leading ADVOCACY role with the FEDS and private industry as a collective political force for the revitalization of the East/ Mideast/Midwest if schools like Maryland and NC (or TX and A&M) are also members? For this reason, I think that REGIONALISM will remain an important factor….and I think schools in the other regions will see it the same way…
Adding schools like RU, Pitt, U Conn, Syracuse, Mo., Nebraska, KU still makes sense in this regard…….I do think TX and A&M are so tempting that the BT would take them anyway, at it’s long-term peril….but I don’t think the same applies to NC, Viginia, Duke, GT, Miami…see also my comments below concerning ESPN’s take on Delaney’s comments…..
Maryland is as much eastern as southern (given the growth of the D.C. and Baltimore suburbs, probably more so), and would culturally mesh with the Big Ten as much as Syracuse or Pitt. Things change; remember, for several decades, West Virginia University, which we now think as purely eastern, was a member of the Southern Conference.
You said “[Delaney]sees the Big 10 as the elite conference of large, research institutions in the Eastern half of the US…..I think this lends a lot of credence to Texas´ candidacy”
Never heard Texas referred to as an eastern school 🙂 Heck, Hopkins Horn took issue with TX being thought of as a southern school. Guess an independent nation that claims the right to subdivide into 5 states or secede can be anything it wants.
With five different states, Texas could claim any direction it wants, and it probably already does.
I was only using ¨eastern¨ though in this sense as a way to discriminate against the USCs or Cals of the world.
I´m not sure there are many geographic limitations left, but crossing the Rockies would be a bigger step than even this blog has considered.
What if Texas knows LSN is a no go but wants to save faces when leaves the B12 and pushes LSN down their throat in order to be kicked out. At some point the remaining B12 schools must have enough of Texas. While Texas is a big fish I think the rest of B12 will leave in harmony without them and when they create their own TV channel they don’t have to worry about the state of Texas because they already have 3 Texas schools with possibilities of adding even more.
OK. Here is my dream expansion to 16 teams with emphasis on westward expansion to capitalize on growing populations in Texas and Colorado.
With 16 teams and a 9-game schedule, each team will never go more than one year off playing the rest of the conference. No championship game (which has been hinted at and will help make the regular season schedule more attractive).
The pods are for scheduling purposes only. You would play each team in your pod every year (3 games) and then one team on each other line (6 games):
1. PENN STATE/OHIO STATE
2. MICHIGAN/MICHIGAN STATE
5. IOWA/ MISSOURI
7. TEXAS/TEXAS A&M
Do today’s remarks indicate that the “silent phase” is over?
Some more analysis of Delaney’s comments from ESPN’s Rittenberg, which I think makes sense……(See Day 2 Notes from BT meeting, as I don’t do links…)
He believes Delaney’s “sun belt” comments are being somewhat misconstrued.
He does not think Delaney is talking about “chasing” southern schools, other than TX…., per se…
Instead, that changing demographics are
such that the BT has to get “bigger” in terms of alumni base…
Therefore, schools like Missouri and Rutgers, with large enrollments, might have an advantage.
This actually fits in pretty well with what Silverman, BTN President, said the other day, to the effect that the BTN was not controlling the expansion, although it’s a factor.
Seems to me that JD is saying “institutional fit” will be a major factor here….with the bigger state schools, whereever located, having the advantage.
That said, obviouly TX and A&M fit the BT profile of 40000+ enrollments, lots of research$, state school.
Of the “usual suspects” mentioned for expansion, this would favor RU first, Missouri second, with Pitt and Neb. next, and Syracuse trailing. I also think this makes smaller southern schools like Miami and GT less likely targets than the “sun belt” aspect would otherwise imply. Also, AAU membership has again been mentioned as critical, which apparently leaves U Conn out of this expansion, if it occurs.
Rittenberg quotes OSU’s Smith as saying “You could address the census issues by getting stronger where we are” (ie…”bigger” in the MW/East)
What doesn’t make much sense to me is JD’s comment that “ome of the best decisions are not acting”. If the above analysis is correct (and I think it is), I don’t understand why you wouldn’t add RU, Missouri, and Nebraska now even if you couldn’t get TX and A&M to go along…anybody have any thoughts on that?
@mushroomgod – I agree with Rittenberg. Outside of Texas, I don’t think that there is really a push for the Big Ten to actually go south. I’ll reiterate again that I think it’s fairly pointless to talk about the Big Ten adding ACC schools other than Maryland only in the off-chance that it’s interested, but the new ESPN contract along with what will likely be another rebuff by Notre Dame makes going that route very unlikely.
People can say what they want about the ACC, but that is an extremely well-run conference where its members are generally happy. As much as we focus on money (and I’ve certainly contributed to that), this conference realignment shows that schools being happy and tight-knit is invaluable to conference strength (and something the Big Ten needs to heed when it adds any schools). The Pac-10 schools make less than the Big XII schools, yet the Pac-10 is likely to raid the Big XII as opposed to the other way around. That’s largely because the Pac-10 has great institutional fits without the constant in-fighting of the Big XII. I’m continually getting the impression that absolutely no one likes being in the Big XII – there’s obviously a lot of animosity towards Texas (for taking the most TV money) and Texas shoots it right back (where it doesn’t think the other schools contribute enough to the national TV package).
@Frank – Part of the reason for the Pac-10’s stability is that it’s geography really does make its members less appealing to other conferences. There are probably several schools on the left coast that wouldn’t mind different company, but the time zones really are a bit of a barrier.
As for the BYU issue, the Sunday play thing is absolutely non-negotiable on their part. If not for that (and some other previously mentioned political issues), I think they would be in a different conference already. I really do hope we manage to keep the conference together. Feelings are mixed among the Frog faithful (and all of the other MWC followers) as to whether adding Boise is a good idea, but I’d really hate to see this tight little conference broken up just to replenish a violated Big 12.
Also, what’s your beef with Glee? I don’t know what I’d do without my weekly dose of uncut brain crack. And, with Joss Whedon and THE Neil Patrick Harris on board – I’m gonna burst, I’m so excited.
Why? Why does the ACC´s new ESPN contract change anything in regards to the Big 10?
I understand that it would affect the SEC´s ability to steal any members, since they are both subject to similar contracts, while the ACC places a greater premium on academics.
But how does it change anything in respect to the Big 10? I don´t know the exact numbers, but let´s say that the per school annual payout went from $15 mil to $20 mil. Then add $5 million per school to account for Alan´s comment about out-of-network profits. That puts each school at $25 million.
If the difference between the Big 10 and the ACC were a few million or even 10 million, it might be understandable, but, unless I´ve got something wrong, we are talking about a $20 million difference or more each year.
With schools across the country facing cutbacks, I´m not sure if tradition is enough to stop this from happening, especially if tradition is kept alive through a package deal.
I don’t think this can be stressed enough in expansion. The Big Ten wants schools with a similar profile and a similar mission. They want schools that will be team players. The Big Ten, SEC, ACC and Pac 10 are efficient teams that get things done because they work together. One gets the sense the Big East and Big XII are barely speaking to each other. (And Tagliabue only increased that impression by trash-talking Rutgers when he got hired.) That’s why those schools are ripe for poaching.
Academic profile is very important in making a “fit”. One thing we shouldn’t get too caught up in is the USNWR rankings, though. I get the impression that most University Presidents think they’re garbage. They’re happy to trumpet them when they’re good, but they don’t really believe them.
The Big Ten loves Rutgers whether they deliver NYC or not. They’d make a great team player. This is probably why Missouri is getting a lot of consideration as well, despite not making a lot of financial, academic or athletic sense.
Delany sees the conference as a means for institutional convergence. In that sense, he´s looking for large research schools in areas of growth. Nebraska fails that test and Missouri and Rutgers don´t make a big splash.
A large national and passionate alumni base can make a difference – and maybe that gets Nebraska in – but remember that the Big 10 already has a large alumni base, dispersed in every major city across the country. The challenge now is to develop those high-growth markets to the best interests of its members, and expansion is the means by which you do that.
In this new environment, like attracts like, regardless of geography. And while potential candidates will be attracted to the Big 10 through their shared values, the BTN will be the motor setting this process in motion.
In that sense, the Big 10 clearly has the upper hand. All things being equal, large research universities may be happy where they are and more inclined toward inertia. Yet as Delany made clear, conference affiliation is a reflection of the past, since individual institutions are compelled to continually seek out the better fit. The better fit, from the perspective of current Big 10 members, is one of these big fish – it lies in fulfilling one of these expansion scenarios. The reason you are expanding in the first place is because of the gold mine you´re sitting on, and even though it may take a bit longer, I can´t see any of your big targets turning that down in times of budget deficit. So in that sense, you don´t settle for the peripheral schools until every recourse has been exhausted with your top targets – even if that means waiting a few years.
To address one of your other posts, you mentioned that the Big 10 may see itself as a political lobbying group for its region, but I don´t see how SE expansion is any different in that regard from Southern or NE expansion.
As for Alan´s comments on the SEC, I think outside forms of revenue are interesting subjects and ones tough to quantify. I would be very interested to see true conference-by-conference numbers that reflected this. That said, we are still talking about a model with a definite ceiling. And even though the SEC comes closest, I don´t think any conference can challenge the Big 10 until it abandons its out-dated revenue models. And that gives the Big 10 the power to discriminate and wait for the best institutional and geographic fits.
GEOGRAPHICAL CONNECTIVITY VS SHIFTING POPULATION
Delaney previously stated the expansion would likely be geographic proximate. Today he mentioned the importance of shifting population so these two comments seem to be at odds. Maybe he meant the importance of new media markets & national distribution are critical in the expansion. Larger alumni bases can have a large pull for basic service carriage in non B10 states. Anybody have a list of living alumni for each candidate? Maybe pulling in enough schools will make the BTN almost national if they have a much larger alumni base. Picking up schools in the major media markets like NYC, DC, etc. might also do the trick for getting the BTN as a national channel. If I do the math right, getting BTN to be a national channel like ESPN would about multiply the profits tenfold.
Just another Delany tidbit:
“Could it be 19? I hope not. Could it be 11? It may.”
The overly conspiratorial among us realize that is the first time he has ever admitted that the process might take less than 12 months.
This point is spot on, and a good reason why the “Traditional” Notre Dame fan base is holding Notre Dame back by not embracing the fact that the landscape has changed and recruits want stuff like conference championships and night games on ESPN. I’ve felt for quite some time that Notre Dame has no real shot at sustained success without joining a football conference. Perhaps everyone associated with Notre Dame feels they don’t want the success if it means embracing stuff they have not historically cared for like the night games and conference championships.
A few thoughts on some of the comments here on the boards and on Delaney’s comments today. I noticed Colorado has suddenly come up as a Big 10 option on the boards. Intriguing in that they did have a memorable game, if I recall, with Michigan in 1994:
And if Nebraska were going too, would bring some familiarity with the setting. Rivalry or not, when both programs are good, the games are intense.
I think any Big 12 North team would be happy to leave the conference, there is clear resentment toward the South and Texas in particular. However I imagine Colorado see’s itself more aligned with the PAC-10 and has the alumni base there. They also like the recruiting connection to the West Coast. Of course they’d listen to the Big 10 if the Pac-10 were not calling and several other North Schools were headed to the Big 10. Too bad McCartney is not the coach anymore, he has huge ties to Michigan, which could be an interesting dynamic. And what Big 10 fan/school would complain about visiting Boulder?
As for the comments today from the Big 10, I wouldn’t put much stock in them. I think the time-line will be affected by many things, and 12-18 months is probably more likely the time-line to having everything signed,sealed, and delivered. Information will get out sooner, and the Big 12 in particular will probably have a major falling out sooner than later.
How it all shakes out is probably still unclear, and there is going to be a ton of politics with every decision. Not just politicians, but school administrators, donors, alumni, TV people, etc.. I believe the B10 will do their best to deny every rumor until things are finalized because clearly Delaney indicated today he does not want to be publicly turned down, and schools clearly do not want to bank on an invite or acceptance by the powers that be until those pieces are in place.
Best guess is Missouri, Nebraska and Rutgers to get to 14 and it stops there. Can’t see Texas going, too much ego and they have a great deal right now. Don’t understand Rutgers, they are not going to bring the NYC market, but they will bring something positive if they continue to improve I suppose. More of a recruiting advantage to the East Coast for the other Big 10 programs. Nebraska makes a lot of sense from a national interest/TV standpoint and Missouri makes a lot of sense geographically and to even out the numbers. Plus they want it sooooooo bad! Sometimes you just gotta throw the little guy a bone! Sorry Mizzou fan, couldn’t help myself. This post is clearly too long, sorry.
The more I think about it, I think that a lot of things that Delaney thought might happen didn’t and that’s why the expansion isn’t wrapping up like I know I thought it would.
I don’t think the Big Ten anticipated having to destabilize the Big XII alone. They probably expected the Pac-10 to be more proactive in becoming the Pac-12. The Pac-1x’s problem is that there are a dearth of acceptable expansion options for them. Colorado is a given but after that it gets very speculative very fast. Texas is great but is married to the LSN idea and is apparently unwilling to be on the first bus outta the XII. TAMU is still a political misfit with the Left Coast as near as I can figure. Utah is still small and poor and would probably be more acceptable if their admission would actually make money for the PAC instead of merely breaking them even.
I also don’t think that the Big Ten wanted Rutgers, Syracuse, or Pitt. I think they wanted to see if they could turn the Big East against themselves and ND. Surprisingly (to me), the Big East decided to keep ND and take their chances.
That may have been the Big Ten’s fatal mistake in all this: they may have given too many schools in the Big East hope they may get invited to the Big Ten trying to scare ND. This move ended up giving approximately half the conference enough incentive to try to keep ND out of the expansion in hopes of getting a slot for themselves on the gravy train. I think Delaney, et al., erroneously believed that ND really is using the Big Ten as a fallback plan like so many of y’all do. I can understand they weren’t expecting ND to be as willing to gamble with their future like they seem to be. Lord knows I didn’t expect them too either. I also think Delaney, et al., still doesn’t view the institutional dissimilarities as anywhere near as big as ND does…again, similar to the commenters here. That’s why I’m guessing negotiations fell through.
With ND not coming, the Big Ten was left with the option of taking a bunch of schools that were potentially even less of a fit than ND is. Pitt is a great school well within the footprint and with slacking fan support. Syracuse is small and private. UCONN is a FBS neophyte and not even an AAU member. No combination of these schools guarantee NYC basic tier cable. It seems now that Eastern expansion is likely a no-go.
To the West, Texas is the dream but BXII destabilization seems to be a prerequisite. It seems that the PAC-10 is not going to help by at least removing the first piece, Colorado. Colorado seems too far at first glance for the Big Ten to pull it. Further, it seems that the Buffs only have eyes for Cali.
In order to destabilize the Big XII, it appears that the Big Ten will need to take themselves around three of the BXII-North schools. Unfortunately for the Big Ten Mizzou is an average school practically in the footprint. Nebraska has practically open admissions and few in-state TVs. Kansas is a basketball school is a state only a little larger than Nebraska. All the remaining schools are just not an option from the Big Ten POV. Besides, I don’t think either the Presidents or the BTN want to take around half the Big XII and end up losing the opportunity to expand elsewhere for decades.
I think that’s why we’ve been hearing so much about a new Southern strategy. Canada blocks northern expansion, and western and eastern expansion is stifled due to circumstance. If the Big Ten wants to pick up new school[s], it seems like it’ll hafta go south. I think that’s why the Big Ten is still quiet, they’re putting the finishing touches on “Plan D or so”. I would think they are now trying to identify Southeastern schools that may be acceptable to both the Presidents and the BTN. This is now complicated by a better than expected ACC TV deal.
I remain intrigued to see how this will turn out, but it seems to me it won’t be anywhere near done this summer.
Or maybe Delany meant it when he originally said he was planning on taking 12-18 months and nothing has changed from that.
Why do ND fans always assume everyone is going for the most underhanded and conniving approach possible? It’s almost like they’re projecting. 😛
Or maybe Delany just figured that the ND ship sailed years ago and that it just keeps popping up because the media keeps pushing it because they don’t “think like a president” like Frank told us to months ago.
The Big 10 has been interested in Rutgers for years for the very reasons you don’t want ND in the Big 10–it’s a school almost identical to the schools already in the Big 10. They needed them to upgrade their athletic programs and now they have. That’s got nothing to do with ND.
Every leak that’s come out of the Big Ten offices (and not from some fanboard passing on rumors supposedly overheard at a drunken sorority party) about ND has said that if Notre Dame wants to join the Big Ten, they’d have to approach us and then we’d listen. But they’re not going to try to woo Notre Dame again.
I can’t say that Delany thinks Rutgers is as sexy a school as Notre Dame. But I think a lot of Big Ten college presidents think Rutgers is awfully pretty anyway, and much less likely to be a pain in the ass after the marriage.
So you are saying….
Notre Dame = Rich, spoiled daddy’s girl that is pretty hot…wants special treatment. She’s herself as special and above everyone else.
Rutgers = Cute girl, but not a knockout. In the long run though she is a good partner, is fair and keeps a nice house. Added bonus is the the cute girl may become rich.
I am starting to get this marriage thing Delaney is talking about.
‘she sees herself’
And with the cute girl the sex is usually great, no pining for Botox or breast implants, and she loves you to death.
Personally, I prefer to think of ND in relationship to the Big Ten as the girl next door who’s pretty attractive, has some issues, but it doesn’t matter since she wants to be “just friends”.
“Surprisingly (to me), the Big East decided to keep ND and take their chances.”.
You might have been the only one surprised (and I’m sure the Big Ten wasn’t).
ND never had a chance of losing its home for its non-football sports.
-Villanova, G’town, etc. would never vote to kick ND out of the existing conference.
-Even without all of this Big 10 expansion talk, the Big East would have to go through some form of a split so that the football conference can add one or more teams to get above eight members. The less than attractive candidates (UCF, Memphis, etc.) the Big East has to pick from would still solve the problems of putting together a 12 game schedule the Big East has now. ND has to know that they always have a home with the non-football playing part of the split.
I think the Big 10 has examined Big East candidates for expansion based on their individual merits, not as non-existent leverage to get ND.
@Phil – Agreed. ND was NEVER going to be given an ultimatum by the BE. It takes a UNANIMOUS vote from all 15 other members (not just the football members) to kick ND out and there’s absolutely no reason why any of the Catholic schools or the schools that might end up in the Big Ten would do that. The Catholic schools believe that there’s eventually going to be a split regardless of what happens to the football side at this point and if/when that happens, they want to be in position to have ND be a part of that. Why would they have interest in sending them to the Big Ten instead? I know for a fact that DePaul and Marquette would not be in the BE today if it weren’t for ND, so there’s at least 2 schools that were never going to vote ND out. On the football side, no school feels better about prospective Big Ten membership than Rutgers and they’ve wanted to go no matter what happens to the BE, so there would’ve been little reason for them to put it at risk by making it easy for the Big Ten to just add ND and call it a day.
It needs to be repeated: ND was NEVER EVER EVER going to get kicked out/given an ultimatum by the BE. NEVER. All of that was coach/message board speak, which is worthless on this matter. That was never a real option on the table.
Just speculation, but I think the return to the original 12-18 month schedule is because they feel that Texas is an option if UT has more time to study the issue.
The Sun Belt comments directly reflect that Texas is the top target. It may also be a carrot to dangle in that the Big 10 is more willing to expand to the southwest then the northeast, and thus, UT may have several conference rivals joining it in a new conference.
My guess is through the back channels Texas has advised the Big 10 that they are completing their analysis of the LSN in the next 3-6 months, and that if the projections aren’t fruitful, they will strongly consider Big 10 overtures.
This also nicely coincides with DeLoss’ contract extension in which he stated he would help navigate UT through any conference realignment issues.
Great post, FLP. You put in words many of the same impressions I have.
Another idea to consider is what part of the Northwestern rumor pissed off Delany so much? If it was the relationship between UT and ND, then with ND out, it certainly hurt UT´s case.
This is another reason why I think the SE strategy gets picked up now. If ND´s national image combined with Rutgers location was appealing to Texas, I imagine a Big 10 with a presence in NC, Georgia and Florida might be even more so. One of UT´s concerns in joining the Big 10 could very well be the potential of losing recruiting ground to the SEC. However, imagine what happens if Texas has annual games in Atlanta and Miami. Suddenly Texas becomes a major player in that region and they do so while enjoying the academic benefits of the Big 10.
Furthermore, from the ACC´s standpoint, picture the difference of approaching the SE group with Texas in the fold vs without Texas in the fold. If Texas has told Delany that they´d replace Notre Dame/Rutgers with the SE bunch, then you call up the ACC with the promise of $15 or $20 extra million a year per school, on top of whatever you predict the ACC schools would bring in.
After reading your comment I finally realized that B10 is doomed (sarcasm). God, I hope ND stay independent forever.
As do I. I just wonder what brought you to that conclusion reading my comment. Oh well.
Big Ten will be fine, I just think the fanboys need to dial their rhetoric back a bit. While it no longer looks like they can get anyone they want merely by showing up and allowing them to put in an application, I’m sure they’ll be OK long-term. UT is probably still in play but no lay-up. TAMU likely is as well, particular if Texas goes B10. But I doubt that BTN will be on the basic cable tier in NYC in the forseeable future even if Rutgers joins. They still are the best fit among Big East schools that will expand the footprint. I just doubt that the Big Ten wants Rutgers as much as Rutgers wants the Big Ten.
Rutgers probably brings NJ and ups the Philly carriage rates to in-state. In addition to probably being the best institutional fit (other than Pitt) on the slate. They are attractive even assuming NYC doesn’t care.
Honestly, I think Delany still wants his Big Ten + ND = 12 done strategy.
I’m actually glad that it will not end up like that. The Big Ten doesn’t need another national brand, it needs footprint. The only way to get footprint is to add schools outside the footprint, so I’m glad that we’re not counting on Notre Dame at this time.
Besides, Notre Dame will always be there, so it’s not like this is the last time it would ever get a chance at having them join the conference.
But on the other hand, if Texas choose a different conference, that would have much more permanence than a Notre Dame staying independent decision.
Even if Texas doesn’t happen, there’s still a lot of opportunity out there for the Big Ten, and I do think the Big Ten should take a really hard look at Colorado if the Pac-10 doesn’t move on them.
And I sense Maryland, though not really “southeastern,” is part of plan D. Isn’t it interesting that Indiama moved its home football game with Penn State to Landover, Md. (FedEx Field) rather than Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis? Isn’t it interesting that Maryland has been sent to Penn State for the upcoming ACC-Big Ten Challenge?
I’m not claiming that Maryland is as high on the Big Ten priority scale as Notre Dame, Texas or Nebraska, or even Rutgers or Missouri. But it has a lot to offer the conference, and Delany knows it.
a few things.
1] Why is no-one upset about Frank Lapidus’ death?
2] Is it really a choice if all 4 of them can’t say no?
1) Because it’s Lapidus and no one really knew him very well. They’ve got closer people to mourn. It’s like if your sister and brother-in-law died in a car accident, you wouldn’t be too upset about your neighbor who died in the same accident and whom you only knew from an occasional party.
2) They all could have said no, it’s just that bad things would happen if they did. You do have a bit of a point here, but it was rendered moot by Jack quickly volunteering.
1] Well they’d only known Jin & Sun & Sayid for 3 months longer than Lapidus. Which of course translates to 3 seasons tv time, but doesn’t seem like a big difference in the greater 3+ years since 815 crashed. You’d think the fact that the fact that the sub captain and airline pilot (the only folks that can leave the island without dropping into Tunisia) both died would have warranted some mention.
3] Do we really think Smokey knew Sayid would falter in killing Desmond? I can’t imagine how Des being alive and out of his control “helps” Smokey at all. I think Smokey’s explanation was just trying to save face in front of his new pal/gun-for-hire Ben.
Delaney made a comment at the meeting yesterday that I have not seen anyone comment on:
‘”a significant number of institutions” are included in the analysis.’
How many is ‘significant’? Does this expand over the five that were mentioned as being in the original study, or over the fifteen that were mentioned as being in the original study? Or is this not relevant at all?
I honestly thought it was implied by the time table. Whereby they’re looking at every school and every possible permutation of the groupings of schools.
As for Delany going ballistic at his staff I think a couple of things:
1) It was not that the rumor was entirely true but that it compromises his negotiation strategies with all parties if even parts were true
2) The impression it gave that the Big Ten offices were run like a loose ship with staffers privy to all conversations, him not having control of private information, a “frat house” environment where staffers don’t feel the importance of “the silent phase” and are comfortable enough with the lack of control by Delany that they can spout off after a few beers.
3) With the meetings coming up in early June with the Presidents at the offices (I think I read that is where they will be) he wanted to make sure everyone understood that they should STFU and not compromise the integrity of the private meeting. He may have heard from some Presidents that he better get control of his office prior to the meeting. He doesn’t want to seem out of control of his house in a time of extreme importance
As for yesterday’s comments:
1) The process is multi-faceted and complicated. Requiring a tremendous amount of research into alot of factors. It will take time (12-18 months), and they want to learn from mistakes of conference expansion by others in the past.
2) AAU/Academics are very, very important
3) Institutional fit is a driver
4) Major Media markets are a driver
5) Demographics and population changes will be considered
6) They are studying many options with a substantial number of Universities.
In other words, the rumors of a short term decision are still not true, the list of invitees has not been narrowed down completely yet, and everyone should not expect closure till the end of the year.
Personally I also think he is blowing smoke and is engaged in private negotiations as we speak. He is trying to buy time for getting what he wants and is sending the rumor mill running in different directions while he focuses on the final few players.
I’ve been looking at this map: http://www.colorado.edu/pba/misc/aaumap.gif
and I really think Colorado should be considered higher up on the list.
Colorado is the only AAU for probably hundreds of miles in any direction in the geographic heart of the west.
If it comes down to a 14 team Big Ten, we’re looking at Nebraska/Missouri/Colorado versus Nebraska/Missouri/Rutgers.
I would argue that Colorado probably does a better job of securing a future for the Big Ten by giving us an anchor out west in the heart of the sunbelt.
Who knows, maybe Colorado only has eyes for the Pac-10, but I think Colorado would have to consider the Big Ten if it came calling and the Pac-10 favored the status quo with a Western Alliance.
First time I’ve seen that map. That is a whole lot of empty white space around us, lol. Kind of explains why we’re going to be stuck as an outpost school no matter where we go unless we somehow get stuck in the MWC.
There’s a *lot* of empty space on that Map. This could really end up being tough on the Big Ten finding schools that are willing to move conferences. Much more difficult that the fan boys dream, I’m afraid.
Assuming that ND is off the table, and Texas needs to be sweet-talked off it’s insistence of a special deal, where does the Big Ten go in the southeast?
GT? Only 4k bigger than NU and only 15 varsity sports (I think wiki sez 17, still, that’s not many by B10 standards).
Vandy? Private. Smaller than NU (barely larger than ND). Has only 15 sports.
Miami? Private. Not AAU.
Florida? Good Luck getting them out of the SEC.
The ACC core group: Maryland? UNC? Duke? UVa? Would they be willing to move as a package? Or alone, for that mattter? Will they be sufficient to get Texas/TAMU?
For that matter why isn’t TAMU alone discussed more?
I agree with all of the points you’re making here.
The Big Ten is taking a hard look at what the future of the country will look like and how the Big Ten fits into it.
I’m beginning to think that some kind of move out west has to be on the table because the Big Ten will never be able to cross into the west if Colorado joins the Pac-10.
I also think that TAMU should be considered alone because I think it’s also a better fit than Rutgers and some of the ones being discussed in the southeast or northeast for the reasons you give as well.
“There’s a *lot* of empthy space on that Map. This could really end up being tough on the Big Ten finding schools that are willing to move conferences. Much more difficult that the fan boys dream, I’m afraid.”
Mayhaps FLP is a gamer? That’s the most common usage of “fanboy” that I can think of.
Maybe I’ve spent too much time in Chicago’s New Town and Vancouver’s West End, I can’t help but form a different mental picture for the term “fanboy”.
The ACC core of Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina and Duke would probably go as a unit of four. They have traditional rivalries with each other and wouldn’t miss a beat as Big Ten members, with academics and athletics palatable to Big Ten presidents. Make Rutgers school #16 and the conference has a best-case scenario in case Texas or ND can’t be lured. (Heck, if you want to go to 20, tack on Georgia Tech, Syracuse, Missouri and Nebraska.)
I am Mani.
“Fanboy” hasn’t yet entered the general internet lexicon yet?
You might have a really long lasting marriage with Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Colorado, and Texas A&M. No attitudes (ND) no prima donnas, all recognized brand names that would fit and fit nicely.
For those of us who game it’s common parlance. For those who don’t, apparently not. 🙂
Come on you people, fanboy was Urban Dictionary word of the day for September 19, 2006.
You call yourselves educated…
I was busy September 19, 2006. So no, I’ve never heard the term “fanboy”. It elicits a certain image in my mind that seems at odds coming from a traditional Catholic.
Maybe I’m just transitioning into the wrong generation, but to be honest, I have to look up a lot of the abbreviations FLP and others write: IIRC, TPTB, and so forth.
Even the schools mentioned here are confusing. Is NU Nebraska or Northwestern? Maybe NE is Nebraska (the state code)? Or is that the Northeast? Is UW Wisconsin or Washington? Is UM Michigan? Miami? Missouri? Manitoba? (Not that most Americans have ever heard of Manitoba…) And speaking of Canada, is BC Boston College or my own British Columbia? Is UT Texas, Utah or Toronto? Then again, I’m getting the UConn Huskies confused with a Yukon dogsled team.
Nebraska, Missouri, Colorado, Rutgers, Pitt/Syr/Maryland. Strong.
I was thinking of the 7-games-for-ND&Texas rumor (where they insist on playing each other). The only way that can work is if the Big10 goes to 14 and the official Big10 conference slate is only 7 games (6 intradivisional + 1 cross-over game). Then the old Big10 schools could schedule 1,2, or even 3 “non-conf” games against Big10 schools in the other division. That way, you could have Big10 rivalry games early in the season as well (for the BTN). To incent teams to schedule the Big10 schools in the other division non-conf, you could make winning those games part of the tie-breaker (if there is a 3-way tie in a division).
So say ND, Texas, & TAMU/Nebraska are added, what would the crossover divisions be?
Illinois-Indiana would almost certainly be scheduled out of conference, as well as most of the rest of Illinois/Northwestern/Wisconsin-Michigan/MSU/Purdue/Indiana
Probably OSU vs. Iowa & other western Big10 teams as well.
One of the things mentioned by Jim Delany was the shifting population to the Sun Belt as a factor in how conference expansion is going to occur.
If they’re looking for data from the 2010 census, the U.S. Census Bureau delivers its data to the President in December for apportionment. In March 2011, complete redistricting data is delivered to the states. When Delany states that the expansion study may take 12 to 18 months, one of the pieces of data he may be looking for is the census information. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_census
If you look at the link, you’ll notice which states are likely to receive more members of the House of Representatives–Texas leads with four more seats and Arizona, California, Utah, Washington, Nevada, Georgia and Florida all get one seat. Not surprisingly, the states predicted to lose states include Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and Pennsylvania–all within Big Ten territory. New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts are also looking at losing one seat.
I may be stretching things here a bit, but think about the census data and why Notre Dame and Texas want to play football against one another. If one of the growing population segments is Hispanic Catholics and the state of Texas is projected to have the biggest growth in population, then that special arrangment with ND and UT begins to make some sense for both schools. Texas regularly playing Notre Dame grows the local interest in a population segment that may not have a strong interest in college football; ND playing in Texas puts them in a strongly Hispanic Catholic market on a regular basis.
On a related note, I was at the Insight Bowl game here in Phoenix when Oregon State played Notre Dame. A good portion of the crowd at the Bank One Ballpark (now Chase Field) were Hispanics supporting the Fighting Irish. I don’t know what the crowd composition was when Notre Dame played Washington State in San Antonio–perhaps the same thing happened.
This is an astute analysis of the benefits that could accrue to the Big Ten from a Notre Dame-Texas rivalry within the context of the conference.
And it’s probably why Delany was supposedly upset about that kind of leak because he probably mentioned something very similar to that scenario as a possibility…
I also have to wonder, how far along were the discussions with Notre Dame that an accommodative schedule was worked out and a protected rivalry with Texas was negotiated?
In any event, if Notre Dame doesn’t want those hispanic Texas fans so much, Wisconsin will welcome them. Bienvenido a los Diez Grande, Tejas!
I was thinking of the 7-games-for-ND&Texas rumor (where they insist on playing each other). The only way that can work is if the Big10 goes to 14 and the official Big10 conference slate is only 7 games (6 intradivisional + 1 cross-over game). Then the old Big10 schools could schedule 1,2, or even 3 “non-conf” games against Big10 schools in the other division. That way, you could have Big10 rivalry games early in the season as well (for the BTN). To incent teams to schedule the Big10 schools in the other division non-conf, you could make winning those games part of the tie-breaker (if there is a 3-way tie in a division)
The general conclusion was that they were looking at a 14-team conference but a different format. 12 schools would have 3 protected annual rivalry games plus 5 conference games per year against the other 10 teams. A 3-5 conference schedule. Texas and Notre Dame would only have 1 protected game (each other) and then play 6 of the remaining 12 schools each year, a 1-6 schedule. Thus every combination is played either annually or twice per 4 years.
I didn’t comment on the rumor at the time since it seemed both totally off-the-wall and totally against what the Big Ten’s egalitarian mentality. But if Spartan Nation’s inside source is willing to say there’s something to it, I now am re-facinated.
I have to say it’s interesting I think for the reasons cutter mentioned that ND would love an extended series home and home with Texas. The problem is that Texas is already pretty full up on rivalries (TAMU, Oklahoma, all the old SWC, all the current BXII, etc.) I think that carrot plus the possibility of either playing in the Penn State, OSU, MSU, UM, Purdue, etc. division or getting a definitive affirmative to protected games with the UM-MSU-Purdue combo would get the NDPTB to consider membership.
Djinn, as a guess I’d say that the AD’s office was asked about specific ND wants and concerns with Big Ten scheduling, and if Texas was in what would ND like. My hunch is that the Big Ten office was spitballing and this was something that came out that wasn’t immediately shot down.
I just don’t understand if/why Texas would want it.
That “ND’s gotta apply, we’re not gonna chase them” wasn’t rumor or speculation, but was from Delaney himself, FWIW.
I just don’t understand if/why Texas would want it. Texas already plays an 8 game conference schedule with OU and aTm, so 7 plus an OOC of OU and aTm is just one more tough game than now, the equivalent of UT in the B12 adding ND as an OOC. The money increase would be huge, as would the prestige factor. Instantly becomes an all-time Top 25 rivalry. Further boosts and separates the UT brand into the elite level.
I don’t see the academic reputation and CIC as enough to lure Texas into the Big Tent, even if aTm comes along. Pac16 seems a more natural fit. IMHO, the only way UT joins is if ND also joins and they play each year.
To me, speaking for the BT as I see it, I don’t see the seven game thing as a deal killer. However, so everyone is on the same playing field, I’d give everyone 7 games and if you want to schedule an OOC or an extra in-conference game, great. Your choice.
Nor would I object if ND and Texas wanted a rivalry. Great. Each are historically great teams. I can see the appeal, and I can see ND wishing to appeal to the Latino community.
Nor would I think a conference championship rotating through Texas would be a deal killer. In fact, I think it’s reasonable.
If Texas wanted A&M to come along,too, again, fine by me. It doesn’t compromise what I think the BT values. It’s a good research school.
Guys, I think y’all are spending way, way too much time trying to figure out how to kiss Notre Dame’s and UTx’s collective asses. What makes the Big Ten (and the SEC) a great conference is that the conference is more important than any one individual school. If the Big Ten starts treating its new members different, the old members are going to resent the Hell out of them.
I’d agree with that. All schools in the conference would be treated equally.
The “compromises” I mentioned above have evidently been discussed, and I don’t think any of them are unreasonable.
Championship games could (and probably should) rotate through all campuses.
All schools would have a rivalry. Wisconsin has Minnesota (and Iowa), for instance, Ohio State has Michigan, etc. ND could have Texas insofar as I would care.
If Texas wants A&M, what’s not to like? A&M is a great fit on paper. It’s a good school and an AAU member with higher research than Texas.
I’m not sure how any of that means kissing anyone’s ass, least of all Notre Dame, (which I’ve stated I don’t really feel belongs in the Big Ten). I’m just stating that if these are “compromises”, in my mind, they’re not big issues.
Alan, as a southerner, do you have any insight as to whether Florida would consider the Big Ten?
There’s always the danger of that. I’m quite sure Delany would be for this plan, but the Big10 presidents would have to live with this scheme, so persuading them would be the tough part.
However, they may spring for an official 7-game conference slate. Non-conf Big10 games aren’t very exceptional; they’ve taken place before and Michigan & Indiana tried to arrange one recently but couldn’t get their schedules to match up.
Djinn Djinn, having lived much of my life in Florida (20+ years), I can say with near certainty that there’s no way that Florida will consider another conference at this time.
Florida is very comfortable being the SEC’s biggest draw and the biggest market, and it doesn’t really see itself as a kin to the Northern schools.
UF is a “southern” school but in a “border” kind of sense (in the northern part of Florida but not the panhandle which is really rural) because a lot of its alumni and fanbase is to the south in Orlando and South Florida, yet the school doesn’t necessarily identify itself with South Florida’s “northern values”.
Florida would consider the Big Ten many years after the Big Ten gets to its doorstep by taking NC/VA schools and building a “southern strategy”, which is to say realistically not anywhere close to today…
Also, UF seems to be in a comfortable place in living in a reality of a sports conference with schools that it doesn’t really view as being on the same academic level (other than Vandy). The administration is probably comfortable with that because it knows that it is prestigious enough in Florida and among people in the know, etc.
It’s probably better to just purge the Florida question from your mind, rather than wait to hear responses. The SEC is the most stable conference out there (along with the BigTen), and Florida has little reason to leave. Academic peers has a big place in this discussion, but let’s not go crazy.
Thanks for your insight on the University of Florida, Zeek. I really have no knowledge about the school.
The U of F would be an amazing “get” for the Big Ten, but it does seem far-fetched.
If the BT is interested in expanding into the state of Florida, Miami or Florida State would be the other obvious choices. Any opinion on their willingness to jump?
In my mind, though, these are just not the same sorts of schools as the current BT members or the University of Florida. Do you have an opinion on that?
Djinn – What I mean by “kissing ass” is any consideration of expanding the conference by up to 5 teams and cutting the number of conference games for the sake of Notre Dame’s “national schedule” or UTx’s traditional rivals that may not follow them to the Big Ten (if UTx goes at all). If there are more teams in the conference, the number of conference games ought to increase, or at least stay at 8.
The less you play other teams in your conference, the less you keep your conference identity. By taking in Notre Dame, you are losing some of your big/public identity. By taking Texas, you are losing some of your Midwestern identity.
For example, if Wisconsin plays Minnesota every year plus 6 other games that rotate, you could go 4 years without playing Michigan, Ohio State, Penn St., Texas or Notre Dame.
For all the fuss about Nebraska & Oklahoma losing their traditional rivalry, I think the Big XII scheduling is better than the SEC’s formula. LSU & Florida are in different divisions but play every year. Ole Miss gets Vandy. Those games count the same in the standings, but they aren’t equal.
Florida State would be even harder to get than UF in my opinion because Florida State really does see itself as the “southern” Florida school. Again like UF, a lot of FSU alumni do live in South Florida, but even more than UF, FSU views itself as part of the panhandle, whereas UF thinks of itself as the true center of education in Florida even though it is in the northern part of Florida.
Miami though is an entirely different story, and I can probably best speak to its qualifications. Donna Shalala is always about the next big thing and is somewhat self-serving (during a relative’s graduation there, she played a 5 minute video of herself doing things there, seriously). I really think that Delany would find an open ear there if he was willing to lay out a southern strategy.
Most likely though Miami would not want to become like BC or Hawaii (a lone school very far away) and may want other schools like GTech and some NC/VA schools to come with them.
The one benefit with Florida as opposed to Texas is that politics would not play a role at all since the schools are mostly left to their own devices and can take care of themselves…
In summary, I think Miami would be able to be put into play, the issue is whether the Big Ten can see a use for Miami, but that’s an entirely different story…
Djinn – regarding the chances Florida considering the Big Ten, I think Florida would consider moving to the Big Ten just as much as Michigan would consider moving to the SEC.
I doubt anyone from the Big Ten, Pac 10, SEC, or core the ACC teams (UNC, NC State, Duke, Wake, UVA, Maryland)would consider any move to any conference due to history, tradition, comfort with other members, and geography.
Florida probably has a better deal with the SEC due to its retention of broadcast rights of inventory that CBS/ESPN don’t pick up.
Like Frank has said on many occasions, teams from stable conferences aren’t going to move just to move. I agree with that.
Yeah, I’d put Florida in the same category as USC and UCLA with respect to Big Ten expansion – NFW. I’ve spent more time in Florida more than any state other than Illinois and that is SEC country until you get to the Miami area. Likewise, North Carolina is ACC country. In contrast, my impression of Texas is that it’s Longhorn/Aggy country as opposed to Big XII country, if you understand what I’m saying. Local identities (not just school identities) are intertwined with the Big Ten, ACC and SEC, but that’s not the case with the Big East or Big XII. That’s a big difference and shows why some conferences are poachable and others aren’t, even if the Big Ten can offer more money than any other conference.
Let’s just put it this way. To get Florida to even consider the Big Ten, you’d have to get Texas and Notre Dame in; and get the earnings per team up to say $50+M on TV after the 2015-2016 negotiations are done. It’s just not realistic.
The Big Ten would be best off focusing on Texas for now and if there’s any way to realistically get them into the mix.
The SEC seemed to have a pretty strong identity even back in the days when schools there played only 6 conference games in a 10-school conference (and played some schools something like twice every 8 years or so). In fact, if I recall, you folks could go 6 years before playing a school in your conference until fairly recently.
Thanks, gentlemen. (Or fanboys, depending upon your preference.)
That’s pretty much what I thought about the Florida schools, but I never seem to hear if there are any squabbles like there seem to be in the B12 or BEast, that might make them more likely candidates.
I never liked Miami when they were winning those championships, and I just don’t know about adding a smallish private school.
You likely know that Shalala was at Wisconsin for a time, a time which corresponded to Wisconsin turning around its football fortunes.
Richard – I think the SEC went from 6 to 7 SEC games around 1984, and went from 7 to 8 games when the SEC expanded. So when the SEC expanded by 2 (20%), it added a game. The Big Ten is discussing expanding by up to 5 (almost 50%) and decreasing its conference schedule. What’s wrong with that picture?
Like I said in an earlier post, I don’t like the non-division every year game in the SEC. Don’t get me wrong, I get geeked up for Florida. Two of my greatest memories in Tiger Stadium were in 97 when LSU beat #1 Florida, in 07 when LSU went 5 for 5 on 4th down conversions. But its just not fair. The Big XII has it right. Nebraska and Oklahoma play for 2 years in a row and then take two years off. In the SEC, LSU goes 3 years without seeing Georgia, Tennessee, Vandy, Kentucky, and South Carolina.
IMO, the only way you can accept those kind of concessions to get UT and ND into the league is if they are on a temporary basis. In other words, give them the shortened conference schedule and extra OOC game for a period of 5 to 10 years. By that time I would say it’s very likely that the NCAA has moved to a 13 game schedule for everyone and the extra OOC game for those two would be less significant. While it would be weird to have unbalanced schedules, the time limit would make the idea somewhat more palatable. Something similar was done when PSU joined the league and they were given a 3rd guarantee game against Michigan for the first 10 years (on top of the guarantee games with OSU and MSU).
I think the idea of having unequal conference games is just too screwed up to consider. However, that could still be pulled off by having 7 “official” conference games (1-6 for all schools) with the original Big10 schools playing 1 game against each other out of conference (so schools could have 3 annual rivalry games if they wanted to, only 1 of the rivalry games would be played in the non-conf slate each year). That actually may appeal to the BTN as they could have one Big10 rivalry game each week of the nonconf schedule when most of the rest of the Big10 (and the country) is playing creampuffs.
Then the nonconf Big10 game could be used as a tie-breaker (if there was no head-to-head).
Oh wait, except without divisions, ND wouldn’t be able to protect their games against Michigan, MSU, and Purdue. Hmm. I think we’ll have divisions, and games like OSU-Illinois & Michigan-Wisconsin will become annual nonconf games.
Didn’t the Big Ten have 2 teams play one less conference game than the rest in 1981 and 82?
Could perhaps the “ND-TX play one less” format be a temporary measure until the conference can get an extra game added to seasons?
Huh, you’re right. tOSU and Iowa only played 8 while the rest played 9 conference games in 1981 & 1982. Wow, that was weird. Probably due to them moving to a 9-game conference schedule, and tOSU & Iowa couldn;t clear their nonconf slate in time.
In any case, I can’t see uneven conference schedules holding up in the long-term. Nonconf Big10 games are more likely.
When Michigan State was voted in back in 1949, they didn’t start competing in football for the conference title until 1953. From 1953 season through 1964, there were at least 2 schools who didn’t play the same number of conference games.
Penn State came in 1989 and it was 1993 before they were eligible for football.
A few years of fewer conference games will also cover for new schools to become fully invested in the BTN equity structure while still making some money on OOC games.
And none of the athletic directors, football coaches or men’s basketball coaches passing through the lobby were willing to name names or drop hints. All except Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith, who, when asked about the Sun Belt demographic being most important, said, “You’re on track with the thought process.”
Does that mean that the Big Ten is now looking south?
“I’m trying to give you a hint,” Smith said.
Reports are unconfirmed that Smith later played Hot-Cold with a map of US later.
PREVIOUS CONFERENCE EXPANSION LESSONS LEARNED
What are the lessons learned from the previous expansions? What worked & what didn’t? Maybe that will help understand some direction of the B10 & the “institutional fit” Delaney talks about.
Review the 16 team WAC disaster.