Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Expansion is Over????

If you have been following along you know that the Big 12 is now going to remain in its current state as the "Texas 10", "Big 12 Lite", or, more appropriately, "The All Powerful Omnipotent Conference That Exists to Pacify the University of Texas."

I didn't realize how critical control and power was for UT. That one surprised me. Texas could not give up on the idea of having the TLN and wanted a clause with "whoever's" conference they joined to keep that revenue stream possibility open for the future. Unbeknownst to the MMQ, Florida and other universities in the SEC actually have sports tier channels that are run by the university and exclusive to those universities. I have no idea what kind of income they generate, but Texas obviously believes enough in the model that they want to embark on the idea. Hook 'Em Horns. Hearts and Minds and the bodies will follow....

The other thing that hasn't been made exactly clear yet, at least to this observer, is that how in the world do you lose your 3rd and 5th television market (Colorado and Nebraska) and somehow claim that you will now have a more lucrative television deal forthcoming, netting the schools DOUBLE what they are currently receiving??? Something's very fishy in the Big 12 Lite...And I think it has to do with influential alumni at major coporations agreeing to advertising deals on the cuff in order to hold this whole mess together. There were going to be some major players without a BCS home in all of this and those players may have some very real dollars at work behind the scenes. It's the only way this thing stays together...

Also, what happened to the SEC's offer to Texas A&M? Was there ever really an offer? If there was and A&M rejected it, well, they're idiots and deserve whatever fate they receive. If there wasn't, than A&M didn't really have any options on the table with the exception of trying to hold the Big 12 Lite together with the other losers in the deal....So hopefully that gets answered sometime in the near future.

Winners in the Deal: Nebraska and Colorado. They both get into healthier situations with better partners. The Big 10 clearly gets a superior university and collegiate football team in the conference.

Losers: I'm not convinced that the Big 12 Lite is any better off at 10 teams than they were with 12, especially when you lose two big markets. Advertising and sports revenue is kind of a zero sum game: There's only so much money to go around and my guess is that the Big 12 Lite eventually loses in this deal...No one knows it yet.

Neutral to Winners: The Pac 10. They gained a viable partner and penetration into a new television market, but they certainly did get anything close to their goals. So, while they didn't lose, they didn't exactly win what they wanted....

What remains to be seen: The BEast appears to have dodged a bullet. But in reality, with the exception of a couple of schools, what conference really wants to grab a BEast team? Any other conference could ask any BEast school to come on over and the invitation would be accepted on the spot. That doesn't make for a healthy situation.

The Domers: While they will look at this as victory, much like the global debt in the economy, all that's really happened is they have kicked any decision they will eventually have to make with respect to joining a conference down the road.

The Pac 11: Will they add Utah? My guess is they're happy with where things are currently and don't want to add someone that could prove to be a liability later on. So the Pac 11 will stay at 11 for the foreseeable future.

Is this the end of expansion for right now? Today's news would make you believe that. Everyone in the Big 12 is merely a pawn of Texas and Texas is controlling, even more so, it's own little world....Think Notre Dame in the BEast if it comes to that. They would have everyone answering to their beck and call if they ever did join in Football....

So, with that much dysfunction, what makes anyone think that it's over?

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