The Real Reason Why Notre Dame’s Hand Might Be Forced

Posted: June 13, 2010 in Big East, Big Ten, Sports
Tags: , , ,

Before we get to talking about Notre Dame, the fate of the entire college sports landscape is being decided in Austin and College Station this week.  Who knows if the Big Ten will ultimately be a part of this (I know that they are trying very hard), but I do believe this: Texas A&M would be insane to turn down an invitation from the SEC.  I’ve thoroughly enjoyed all of my discussions with Texas fans over the last few months, but the prevailing belief among the Longhorn faithful that A&M would be making a mistake by taking that deal is complete nonsense.  As much as I hate parroting the ESECPN talking points, the SEC has definitely been the top football conference overall for several years now.  Its conference TV revenue per school today is larger than the projections for the proposed Pac-16, while A&M could also sell local TV rights on top of that.  Financially and culturally, it’s a no-brainer for the Aggies.  It puts its rivalry with Texas at great risk, but remember that Penn State gladly threw away its own Thanksgiving rivalry with Pitt a few years after joining the Big Ten.  Remember that Pitt used to be considered Penn State’s equal not all that long ago.  Now, Pitt is hoping for a Big Ten invite itself while Penn State rolls in revenue like few other programs.  In this environment, it’s always better to be a member of a stronger and more established conference as opposed to trying to “control” a less stable and newer conference.  If you had to bet your entire life savings, is the SEC going to be the more stable and lucrative conference in 10 or 20 years or is it going to be the new Pac-16?  I would bet it all on the SEC, so how anyone could think that A&M would be making a mistake in choosing that option is being disingenuous.

Now, I mentioned in a post last week that a Big East message board obsession might be coming true.  In reality, it’s really more like 2 related Big East message board obsessions coming up to the surface: a mandate to Notre Dame and a possible split of the league.  It had been my belief for a very long time that there really wasn’t anything that the Big East could tell Notre Dame (as I explained in this post looking at Big East expansion options a few months back).  Well, it turns out that I may be wrong since there is a mechanism that has a lot of teeth (and it’s counterintuitive as to who is pushing the issue).

A source with knowledge of the agreement that was entered into by the Big East schools following the ACC raid of 2003 states that in the event that 2 football members leave the conference, the football and non-football members can split the league without any penalty and retain their respective revenues, such as NCAA Tournament distributions.  What is surprising is that the Catholic non-football members comprise the faction that is pushing the issue.  If you recall, those schools met back in March to discuss “contingency plans”.  Apparently, the Catholic schools have decided that they will exercise the split option if 2 Big East schools leave the conference (no matter who they might be) and have informed Big East commissioner John Marinatto as such.  Financially, the Catholic schools would actually be in a fine position because they would have a large reserve of NCAA Tournament credits with Georgetown and Villanova having both made it to the Final Four in the last 4 years.  There is also the stability and cultural fit standpoint, where the Catholic schools are not enthralled with the “usual suspects” of Big East expansion candidates from Conference USA.  (In a side note, FedEx CEO Fred Smith has reportedly offered millions of dollars to a BCS league that would invite Memphis.  Someone suggested to me that this type of offer could run afoul of Federal anti-corruption laws for inducing a public official, such as a public university administrator, to perform an official act.  If there are attorneys practicing criminal law out there, let me know if that would be the case.)  As much as the football members may complain about the hybrid model, the Big East is in a position where it will always need to leverage its basketball league in order to provide coverage for the football side.  The Catholic schools are the ones that give the Big East an entryway into New York City, Chicago and Washington, so removing them actually hurts the football members more than the other way around.

This affects Notre Dame from several different fronts.  Externally, it’s still optimal for the hybrid to stay together for all of the Big East members, so Catholic schools like Georgetown may be willing to sacrifice its connection with Notre Dame in order to preserve the hybrid model and its basketball games with Syracuse and/or UCONN.  This gives to teeth to the rumored pressure from the Big East on Notre Dame to make a decision on whether to join for all-sports.

Even if there isn’t an ultimatum per se, the Big East is on notice that it will split up with the loss of 2 members without question.  Therefore, if the Big Ten takes Rutgers and Syracuse, for example, it automatically forces the break-up of the Big East (where it’s not just a hypothetical threat).  My understanding is that Notre Dame simply will not join an all-Catholic league for non-football sports when push comes to shove.  Notre Dame’s alums may believe that it will be okay only because it would still be a pretty good men’s basketball league, but the problem is for all other sports.  The athletic department size disparity between Notre Dame and the Catholic Big East members is the equivalent of USC or UCLA moving their non-football sports to the West Coast Conference.  That’s just not going to cut it for an athletic department of Notre Dame’s size and stature, no matter how much its alumni base believes football independence matters more than everything else combined.

That’s the angle a lot of people are missing: Notre Dame’s decision on conference membership actually has very little to do with football.  The Irish can still keep its NBC contract and there really is no danger of the program being shut out of the national championship picture even if 16-team superconferences are formed.  A lot of Notre Dame haters go overboard in arguing that the Irish are heading toward football irrelevance.  In reality, Notre Dame has as strong of a fan base as ever and it’s shown every time that the team is halfway decent.  However, the rest of the Irish athletic department will suffer a ton of damage if the Big East loses any members.  Once again, the Notre Dame alumni base might be perfectly fine with throwing every other sport under the bus, but the leadership at Notre Dame won’t be.  There is little rational justification to let that happen when the Big Ten offers more football revenue anyway plus a major reduction in travel expenses.

The rise of superconferences might give Father Jenkins and Jack Swarbrick the PR cover with Notre Dame’s alums to make a move to a conference, but it’s really the terms of the Big East agreement combined with the stance of the Catholic membership that are putting the legitimate pressure on the Irish.

(Follow Frank the Tank’s Slant on Twitter @frankthetank111)

(Image from mlive)

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  1. Jeepers says:


  2. M says:

    Adding, waiting for FLP to have a coronary

  3. Hank says:

    well heres a post that shouldn’t spark any arguements. good work Frank :)

  4. derek says:

    Very interesting. So will the Big Ten take Rutgers and Syracuse just to nab Notre Dame?

    • @Derek – I think Rutgers as the most likely to end up in the Big Ten. The 2nd loss might also be indirect, either in the form of the ACC losing a school to the Big Ten or SEC (where the ACC would replenish with Big East teams) or the SEC taking a school like West Virginia at the same time as adding Texas A&M.

      • M says:

        The funny thing is that no matter happens, the Big East loses teams. Big Ten takes Maryland? Big East loses a team. SEC takes VT? Big East loses a team. Big 12 wants to get back up to 12, the Big East loses a team (Louisville).

        • Seth9 says:

          Yeah, but none of those things are likely to happen. The SEC has no reason to raid the ACC if they can get Texas A&M and/or Oklahoma. The Big Ten has virtually no chance of prying away Maryland and the Big 12 probably cannot grab any Big East schools unless Texas commits to staying (also unlikely).

          • Guido says:

            WV and A&M to the SEC w/ Rutgers to Big 10 would do the trick. Not sure why, but SEC is fond of WV.

          • Jay78 says:

            This is speculation on my part, but I think you guys are missing the point… The Big Ten doesn’t actually have to steal a team from the Big East. They simply have to threaten to steal a team from the Big East causing the Big East to issue an ultimatum to ND to become a full member or get out. The threat puts the Big East on unstable enough ground for ND to look for stability via the Big Ten because ND knows the Big Ten would break up the Big East just to get ND…

            If ND takes the bait, the Big Ten’s options are much better… The Big Ten can pick up Nebraska, Texas, and ND, which makes the Big Ten by far the best conference both athletically and academically. If ND doesn’t jump, if forces the Big Ten to nab a team or two from the Big East, which makes the conference somewhat weaker. If ND knows this, and they’re going to be forced to join the Big Ten either way, why wouldn’t they preemptively join the Big Ten so as to make the conference stronger?

            Ofcourse all of this hinges on what A & M is going to do also. If A & M goes to the SEC, the Big Ten takes Texas, Nebraska, Missouri, ND, and a Big East Team. If A & M goes to the Pac 10, so goes Texas, and then who knows what’ll happen. If A & M comes to the Big Ten, the Big Ten takes Texas, A & M, Missouri, Nebraska, and ND, and doesn’t touch the Big East. Obviously this is the best scenario for the Big Ten.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            Guido – I have not heard anything about the SEC having any interest in WVU. Do you have a source?

          • K says:

            I have only heard the opposite base don SEC trying to up their academic standards. Only thing that has been mentioned was VT… aside from FSU.

          • Kyle says:

            Coming from a Pitt fan:
            the WVU-to-SEC talk is mostly cultural, similar to murmurs about clemson. Consider their 18-year stint in the Southern Conference as well as successful tradition of scheduling SEC non-conference games.

          • Guido says:

            I can’t find the article, but it was something I remember from several months ago when expansion really got started. It seemed to stick w/ me because i’ve noticed sometimes the early “word” ends up playing out in the end with these things. Not much to go on I guess.

      • Badgerholic says:

        Frank – If B10 doesn’t get UT and aTm goes to the SEC, does the B10 just sit and wait for the SEC to get an ACC team followed by the ACC getting a BE team? After the ACC gets a BE team, Delaney swoops in and gets Rutgers and then lays the full court press on ND to commit soon after? Getting Rutgers won’t be difficult so they could have all conditions agreed upon and simply wait on the BoR to vote.

      • NC_Buckeye says:

        After reading all the stuff being posted on the wildcat blog by Purple Book Cat — I now realize that I’ve been wrong about a lot of the stuff I assumed was going on.

        But there was a thread going on there yesterday that ND is saying they’ll approach the ACC if they need to join a conference. They evidently feel they have more in common with the ACC than with all of the big, secular, research-oriented state schools of the Big Ten.

        I couldn’t find any other source to back that up. Does this claim have any legs?

        • NDx2 says:

          I know that some posters here have convinced themselves of that, but I’m not one of them. While there is some argument that the ACC would be a better cultural/institutional fit for us, it is beyond cavil that the decision-makers at ND desperately want the CIC and graduate research cache that the Big Ten uniquely brings.
          If we join a conference, it will be the Big Ten. I have no doubt about that.
          Put it this way. ND’s highest institutional goal is AAU membership. The B10 arguably aids achievement of that goal. The ACC does not.

    • Kyle says:

      I think that’s very likely if texas and A&M decided to split east and west instead of north to the Big Ten.

  5. Carl says:

    Irish eyes are smiling …

  6. Gumbynuts says:


    • M says:

      OT but the broadcast crew has to do something about the buzzing. The only thing worse than watching a 90 minute 0-0 tie is watching it while under attack by killer bees.

      • FLP_NDRox says:

        It’s even in the video game. It’s all I can do to watch soccer normally. The damned buzzing makes the torture effect more real.

  7. Scott C says:

    If the Big Ten does grab Rutgers and Syracuse, and then forces Notre Dame to join, what school is #16? Missouri seems to be out. Does they hold out for an SEC raid of the ACC and see if they can pick up Maryland or Virginia? Does Pitt come back into the equation?

    • Hank says:

      Maryland or Virginia. if they don’t move the MAYBE Pitt

      • Nall says:

        I think that as much as we would like Virginia, they would not be willing to move (certain things such as lacrosse come to mind). Plus, from everything that I have read about their school, their culture seems to much more closely align with many of the ACC schools than your average Big Ten school. That being said, I’m sure that they would listen – but my complete guess would be that they would not come.

        I do think that Maryland would listen and strongly consider us. Just based off of all the discussions their fans have been having and knowing what the Big Ten could offer, I think that they are very much a possibility.

        My guess of the remaining schools is ND, Rutgers, Maryland and one of Pitt/Mizzou/Syracuse. All of the final three have warts (Pitt already in the footprint, Mizzou undergraduate academics/partially in footprint and Syracuse private/little research), so I am hoping for a viable fourth to appear. My guess is that if ND joins as 13 or 14, we may end up with someone at 16 that we have little considered up to this point (much like the Maryland train that has only picked up speed the last two weeks – perhaps only on forum boards such as these).

        • Hank says:

          agreed. just mention Virginia because thats a name you should at least check.

          and I just don’t see Syracuse or Missouri. nothing against either but I just don’t get the feel they are prime options. I could much more easily see Syracuse eventually in the ACC.

          if Texas is out of the picture and Notre Dame is not imminent there is no reason not to let things simmer a bit.

          • NC_Buckeye says:

            Or maybe the strategy is to sit back and wait for certain conditions to occur and then act at that point.

            This is what Slive was doing as far as TAMU and OU.

            I’m pretty confident that Delaney has things in hand.

        • NC_Buckeye says:

          A Big Ten fan posted over on asking them to comment on who they would like to see added. One Husker responded that he would like for the Big Ten to stay at 12 for a while.

          The poster’s reasons were based on what happened to them when transitioning from the Big 8 to the Big 12. He cautioned that adding several new members all at once brought together schools with different situations, experiences, and personalities which led to conflict right from the start.

          He added that right now the Big Ten has a lot of consensus and harmony amongst its members(the Huskers, in fact, find this to be especially appealing). He cautioned that adding a bunch of schools in a short time period could foster league discord.

          After reading that I’ve backed off of the get-to-16 mania. Something to think about.

      • Sportsman24 says:

        I’d prefer Pitt, MD & UVA/SU/RU, whether or not ND joins.

        I teeter back & forth on whether or not I’d want UT/TAMU &/ ND in the BT. Regardless of this, I think ND will end up in the BT, UT may end up in the BT (or P1#) & TAMU will end up in the SEC.

  8. willarm1 says:

    Great Read Tank.

    So it has been often said ND will bring New York. Or have an immense amount of pull. So both NY teams are not a must.

    Possible 16 team expansion. Although I love the Orangeman, Rutgers makes the most sense unless, ND wants SU. (fingers Crossed)

    NEB, ND, Rutgers, Pitt, Maryland.

    • Nall says:

      I think that Pitt makes the most sense from the three I listed above (Pitt, Mizzou, Syracuse) as the remaining three. Plus, if ND were an “early joiner” they may certainly push for Pitt due to their football history.

      That being said, it’s obviously all conjecture on my part. Would love another state school to expand the footprint further, but if not possible, Pitt would be just fine.

      • mushroomgod says:

        Pitt is only better than Missouri in the academic/research area. Otherwise, Missouri is the better choice. Missouri has a larger enrollment, is 100% a state school (Pitt is state-related), is THE flagship school in the state, has a much larger fanbase, an on-campus stadium, and big TV markets.

  9. zeek says:

    Frank, the question is, does the Big Ten force the question and take a school that it may not want, i.e. Pitt or Syracuse (Pitt is great institutional fit in every way but no new markets, meaning 12 + 1 = 12.5; and Syracuse is AAU but way, way smaller in research)?

    I don’t think so, although I guess I could entertain the possibility here.

    So, let’s say we do: Maryland is the final piece.

    Big Ten + Nebraska/ND/Maryland/Rutgers/Syracuse
    or Big Ten + Nebraska/ND/Maryland/Rutgers/Pitt.

    I’d probably be fine with either of those, although I’d like to see a run at UVA or VaTech for the Syracuse/Pitt. spot to get into VA with a different brand.

    The question is: what’s the strategy? Do you just wait for ND to come around and then join it with Rutgers at 14?

    Or do you go for Maryland/Rutgers and then hopes Notre Dame comes around and pair it with Syracuse/Pitt./UVA/VaTech.

    I suppose culturally, Syracuse or Pitt. makes the most sense.

    Then you end up with a “Big North” scenario, which seems like a fine outcome for a 16 school Big Ten. Although we somewhat miss out on the heart of the east coast sunbelt, it’d probably be worth it.

    My bet though would be that Delany would either go Maryland/Rutgers or wait for ND to join with Rutgers…

    I don’t see him as forcing the issue even though you have Pitt. or Syracuse sitting around as workable…

    • Hank says:

      Nebraska/ND/Maryland/Rutgers/Pitt and rename the conference the Army of the Potomac. should give the basketabll challenge with the ACC some added bite.

      • Joe Gargery says:

        Not the Army of the Potomac! It will take years to accomplish anything. Come to think of it, we did finally win the Army of the Potomac/ACC Challenge for the first time.

        • Pariahwulfen says:

          Actually it all depends on if we can stick Virginia in that list somewhere. As the only reason Lee turned down the offer to command the Army of the Potomac, was that he couldn’t bring himself to wage war ‘against’ his home state.

    • willarm1 says:

      You know Zeek,

      with an indirect BE loss because of say the loss of Va Tech.

      UVA could still be in play. Maryland UVA ND Rutgers (Pitt)(SU) Neb.

      still very possible.

    • djinndjinn says:

      What is all this fascination of late with Virginia Tech? What is it exactly that they bring to the table?

      • Nall says:

        Strong fan base, access to the Virginia market and a solid product.

        That being said (again, no inside information), I think it is much more likely that they would go to the SEC than the Big 10 if they go anywhere.

      • willarm1 says:

        I love Va Tech like the next guy, but I think the only non-AAU team allowed will be ND.

      • yatesc says:

        VT has been very good for the past few years (won their conference and all that), and has sustained success for a while now (since Vick put them back on the national map). They bring the tidewater VA market (larger than you think), but they also bring the DC market. Don’t let anyone tell you different, VT is the biggest college football team in the DC area.

        Me, I’m a WVU fan. :sigh:

        I hate our crappy conference.

    • mushroomgod says:

      Maryland’s not coming, and Syracuse sucks……..

      • Pariahwulfen says:

        Syracuse sucks in the same way that Minnesota sucks from an athletic standpoint. Go back 50 years and they were national powerhouses. Heck go back ten years or less and they were both 8 or 9 win teams that would fit soundly in the second or third tier of the Big Ten (depending on the depth in any given year…).

  10. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    Frank – I agree that it would be crazy for A&M not to go to the SEC, but I have a feeling that the gravitational pull of UTx is too strong. I hope I’m wrong, but I’m thinking that the SEC stands pat during this round.

    Also, we have a runner that is a redshirt freshman on the LSU football team who works at my office. No inside info, but he said all the players that he has spoken with think expanding the SEC is crazy. Bottom line is the players think they have the hardest path to the BCS NCG right now, and that adding OU or UTx would make it that much more difficult.

    • Can't Get Enough says:

      If OU/TX are too tough, A&M makes all the more sense.

      A&M to the SEC makes more sense than Colorado to P10 and Nebraska to B10. Without a doubt, it is their best fit.

    • duffman says:


      I think if A&M goes to the SEC, it will be Va Tech as the pair.

      • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

        Duff – I’m fine with VA Tech. We owe them big time. If not for LSU’s epic beatdown on VA Tech in 2007, the Tigers probably don’t make it to the BCS NCG.

        Seriously, VA Tech would fit in the SEC just fine. I think FSU is a better “get” though.

  11. gobucks1226 says:

    Frank, Great stuff. Sounds like the Big Ten is just biding its time to see what A&M does before it acts. Ultimately, I think the Big Ten would like to add only Texas and Notre Dame and call it a day with 14 teams. However, if they are forced to add two teams to get ND, they will do it.

    Do you think the Big 12 has brought up adding Memphis as a way to try and keep the Big 12 from falling apart?

    • Can't Get Enough says:

      Yeah, why hasn’t the B12 been doing anything but curling up in the fetal position?

    • Midwest Aggie says:

      Texas and Texas Tech will announce on Tuesday of their intentions. Oklahoma and Oklahoma State will also be in that time frame, but not really sure.

      Texas A&M has still not given the 72-hour notice to the BOR, so its decision will not be made formally until Thursday at the earliest.

      The feeling from Aggieland is that the vote is about 50-50 between the two options. SEC commish visited yesterday, and the PAC10 commish visited today. Both options are on the table and being evaluated.

      Our illustrious Big12 commish has floated up a plan today to save the Big12 – promising $17M per team per year from national television rights, chance to have own television channel (big selling point for the Horns), and split the $20M monies to be gained from Nebraska and Colorado as they have bolted to new conferences.

    • Husker Al says:

      I’ve lived in Memphis and it just isn’t a Big12 school. The Liberty Bowl is a dilapidated pit and the academics are abysmal. Their two most recent athletic highlights (Final Fours in 1985 and 2008) have been vacated.

      Move them to the Big East if necessary, but not to the Big12. I have too much respect for the remaining schools to see them associate with Memphis.

      • mnfanstc says:

        Husker Al… I too have spent some time in Memphis and agree with you… I also think Memphis is trying to become the next Oklahoma State–have a single large benefactor try to buy the school respectability…

        Sorry, It takes more than cash to earn respect.

        If this FedEx exec wanted his son to play FB in BCS, maybe his son should have went to a BCS school… unless, of course, he couldn’t meet more stringent academic requirements ALA Big Ten.

        Just sayin….

  12. OT says:

    What if the Big East were to expand by annexing the 4 Big 12 North schools: Kansas, K-State, Missouri, and Iowa State?

    How will that affect the status of the Georgetown/Villanova/Seton Hall/Providence axis in the Big East?

    (I am assuming that DePaul and Marquette are tied to Notre Dame.)

  13. jcfreder says:


  14. Playoffs Now! says:

    Only thing is, would a pissed off ND still go to the Big Ten (sic) (sic) or the ACC? Travel for non-football would be worse, but the ACC could add Cincy and perhaps one or more of MO, ISU, KS, Lou, Pitt, WV for some schools closer to ND. With 3-6 slots open, could tailor the expansion to ND’s desires. Midwest, eastern, and even Texas teams. Baylor, SMU, and TCU are quality schools with the academic standing to meet ACC desires while giving ND the Texas recruiting games ND wants. National schedule in conference except for the west coast.

    • Hank says:

      I’ve always thought that was a real possibility. Notre Dame hates joing the Big Ten almost as much as they love independance. the administration may want the Big Ten but a compromise with the alumni donors and fan base could very well be to accept greater travel expense and move to the ACC instead.

      • Nall says:

        I do not think it is that much of a real possibility. ACC does not have nearly what the Big Ten can offer, particularly from a football perspective. Sure we could hear some misdirection about the possibility (and I am sure that ACC would welcome it), but there is no reason for Notre Dame to consider that option other than to go ‘F you’ to the Big Ten, which is not in their best interests.

        I think they will continue to do what is ultimately in their best interests. I have yet to see a compelling case that the ACC would be superior, other than it is more “national” because you have to travel further.

        • FLP_NDRox says:

          And it’s smaller State schools and more actual private school. Big Ten folks forget that. ND will remain a small and hopefully Catholic school, which is why it’s a poor institutional fit with the Big Ten.

          • Nall says:

            I am sure that regardless of where Notre Dame goes, they will remain a small catholic school.

            I agree that they do not match-up as well from from a small/private to large/public standpoint, but I have a tough time seeing how that gets me to the ACC. Something to consider, but not something that would preclude them moving.

          • Hank says:

            we just don’t think that institutional fit is a problem. no one is forced to do or compromise anything on the academic side. and we are not going to force you to abanson Catholicism. we have a few ourselves. and on the athletic fields you are as big an instituion as any of us. the institutional fit is just an excuse. but as I said befor if Notre Dame doesn’t want to join thats your business. but I don’t buy your excuses. the reasons are more emotional and perception of past histories.

        • Playoffs Now! says:


          More scheduling flexibility.

          Better institutional and cultural fit.

          Better attitude. I don’t hear ACC fans pissing all over ND and then expressing how grateful ND should be for the shower and should sign up for a lifetime of more.

          • FLP_NDRox says:

            +1 for that post, PN!.

          • Hank says:

            yea sure. and Notre Dame fans are choir boys that never piss on anyone else. sure.

          • rich2 says:

            As a proud alum from a school that is so often described as “irrelevant” on this board and others, I must say that I am humbled by the constant scheming and planning, time, energy and effort that is directed towards “forcing” my little, undergraduate-oriented, non-AAU alma mater towards joining a larger collective against its will and against the wishes of at least 75% of its alums.

            Frank, let me understand your argument: RU and Pitt leave for the Big Ten. Georgetown, St Johns, Seton Hall, DePaul, Marquette, Providence, and Villanova leave the Big East to form the Great Catholic Conference. Syracuse, Connecticut, Louisville, Cinncinnati, West Virginia, USF remain. They are forced to add two teams to their football — UCF and someone else. Since the non-MBB teams of the Great Catholic conference are weak (and they are), ND is forced to join the Big Ten. In this scenario do the remaining Big East teams disband their non-football programs? If not, then why wouldn’t ND simply continue to compete in all non-football sports in the Big East and continue with our football independence? We already compete against them and if this split occurs, then the remaining Big East non-football leagues should be stronger, not weaker, correct? I probably won’t be able to respond again in this thread for a day or two — I am traveling.

            My silence does not mean “he is stunned by the reasoning that leads ND to join the Big Ten because the Big Ten took RU and ND doesn’t get to hang out with DePaul and Seton Hall.” If it looks like there is collusion among four conferences to have eight bids to the BCS and then a +2 for the NC, then ND will have to jump. I will expect our leaders to wait for four superconferences to be formed, for the lawsuits dismissed and every political wrinkle to play out before they are “forced to join.”

          • K says:

            @rich2 I think Frank addressed that above.

            As far as the fans go… that is why ND should go to the Big Ten… at least there would be entertainment value. Do you not think that all the comments that go back between teams do not add to the sports atmosphere. A UM fan might have osme choice words fro an MSU student or OSU student, it does not mean that UM does not respect the entire university. Also, this is a fan perspective and not a university perspective.

            I am not a fan of ND to Big Ten, but I feel that is where they will end up in the end.

          • mushroomgod says:

            Rich–I have to agree with you. I am tired of all the fascination with ND. I would say screw ND and get on with expansion.

          • eapg says:

            “I don’t hear ACC fans pissing all over ND and then expressing how grateful ND should be for the shower and should sign up for a lifetime of more.”

            Wow, a pissed off Texas fan trying to sow discord elsewhere because things aren’t breaking his way.

            Who’da thunk it?

            Really, PN, you ought to back away from the keyboard for a bit. The Big Ten isn’t going to act like Texas in the Big 12 by trying to strongarm schools that don’t want to be a part of it. Big Ten membership is offered, it’s valuable, but it’s the same offer anyone else gets and if it gets turned down, then the Big Ten moves on.

      • Big Ten Jeff says:

        So… Why exactly does “Notre Dame hates joining the Big Ten almost as much as they love independence…”?

        • Hank says:

          hell if I know but read the vitriol on the ND boards. and as they come to believe the Big Ten has plotted to force them to give up their independance it only gets worse. Its not the administration that has this feeling but the concern is that the alumni who contribute to ND do.

        • djinndjinn says:

          The same reason A&M rails against Texas. They’re situated under a very big BT shadow. The Big Ten has always been big, and its now at 12 schools and likely to get bigger. Everyone of them dwarfs Notre Dame in size. Half the Big Ten schools are within a short drive. Two are in the same smallish-sized state. It’s at least part of why they continually stress how “national” they are and how “regional” the Big Ten is, even though the student population at Notre Dame is actually more homogenous by most objective measures. It’s why they claim to be independent, even if they don’t mention they’re talking about just one single sport, a quarter of whose games are played against the Big Ten anyway. (Meaning all this “indpendence” talks comes down to 9 games per year.) It’s why they care about (or even know about) supposed grudges dating back 100 years. And why they’re so critical about BT academics, (which is actually a great strength), but say not a word about academics of any other league–including the one they don’t seem to know they’re in.

          I don’t mean all this as a criticism. In a way I can’t blame them. Most of us would rail against 12 larger brothers. And it’s human nature, I think that you tend to emphasize that which distinguishes you, mold that to your identity, and tout those characteristics as a virtue.

          • FLP_NDRox says:

            Off-topic. Did you know Wisconsin doesn’t have a baseball team? I didn’t.

          • djinndjinn says:

            I did. They don’t seem to be inclined to form one either.

          • djinndjinn says:

            I’ll also add that no one would like to feel muscled or manipulated by those 12 big brothers into a conference either, Big Ten or otherwise.

            Can’t blame them for that. Everyone wants to feel in control of his own destiny, not drifting passively with the prevailing tide.

          • Badgerholic says:

            FLP – UW dropped baseball back in ’91 b/c of Athletic Dept debt. Title IX is arguably the biggest reason why it won’t be back anytime soon/ever.

          • Chelsea J. Rockwood says:

            Wisconsin dropped baseball nearly 20 years ago along with mens and womens gymnastics and fencing in a cost-cutting/Title IX move. I know the talk on this blog is of the mega-dollar TV deals, but the reality is most athletic depts’ revenue streams don’t match their expenditures. With skyrocketing tuition and state budget cutbacks, it’s going to be harder for universities to continue the toy dept. subsidy without student/lawmaker pushback. Every university president should be conducting a rigorous cost/benefit analysis to determine the true value of continuing to participate in the big time sports arms race.

          • NC_Buckeye says:

            There’s always an excuse with Domers as far as Big Ten membership: (1) we’re a national school — joining a conference makes us regional, (2) we’re a secular school — they don’t share our values, (3) we don’t want to lower our academic standards, (4) the ACC is a better cultural fit, (5) our “rivalries” with UM, Mich State, & Purdue are the exception to all of our other reasons for not joining, etc., etc., etc.

            I personally think the Big Ten is only guilty of posturing and positioning in trying to enlist ND. What I’d like to point out to Domers is this: with the exception of yourselves, most college football fans ACROSS THE NATION think you belong in the Big Ten.

            Where do you think that’s coming from? Is everyone plotting against you?

            Oh and BTW, that “fans pissing on other fans” goes the other way too. I’ve seen my share of Domers insulting the Big Ten and its members.

      • Can't Get Enough says:

        The reason ND loves independence so much is that they cherish a mediocre schedule to boost statistics.

        They’d sink like a BP oil rig in the B10.

        Too soon?

      • pioneerlion says:

        I would think that the cost to the fan base of appeasing their desires for independence would be a very large increase in all ticket prices, and an corresponding aggressive increase in minimum donation levels to the ND booster organization. If it costs the ADept more to stay independent for football, then the alums/fans are going to have to eat that cost, because the university general budget is certainly not going to do so; in fact Univ admins expect $$ from the ADept to the general fund.
        Will be interesting if the alumni pocketbook is willing to support the alumni ego to maintain independence for football.

  15. GopherKH says:


  16. MallettXU says:

    If the all Catholic schools split off I think they would add to their membership. Schools like Xavier with possibilities of SLU or Dayton would be in good position to leave the A10

  17. willarm1 says:

    If A&M decides to stay with the family, no matter how dysfunctional they may be,

    The SEC would possibly stay at 12.

    Will the big Ten be happy at 12?

    Or do they go for 16? because a 14 team option with ND is unlikely. If SEC stay put.

    • Hank says:

      my guess would be that they bide their time. continue informal discussions while integrating Nebraska. see if anything shakes loose over the near term.

      • willarm1 says:

        Now I hope A&M goes to the SEC. (not that I really cared)

        Because that would make them active possibly in the ACC, which could shake things up a bit.

        But without some indirect help. 14 is out of the question with ND. Because we would have to shake the BE tree with two teams first. to pry them lose.

        • Nall says:

          Agree. I am rooting for A&M to SEC, just because it clearly shows that SEC will go to 14 (one would believe) and provide additional evidence that there is a “seismic shift” that would get ND moving.

          Without an SEC move, we could be looking at a Pac 16 and just staring at each other for a while until the next big move. I may be fired for lack of productivity should that scenario occur, so lets hope that A&M moves and then other dominoes start falling shortly after.

          • willarm1 says:

            Hey Nall

            Slive might be smart just going after Missouri if they land A&M, so not to stir up the ACC.

            They get their 14th and don’t help the Big Ten pry anyone lose.

            The SEC plays great D. does Slive?

          • Kyle says:

            @ willarm

            I would think the SEC would be more interested in adding high-profile matches, rather than a territory grab. They have no channel of their own, so their television value comes from nationally-relevant or other high-interest games. Adding mizzou doesn’t seem to add any rivalries to the SEC line up and probably won’t have national title implications.

            Louisville vs UK is pretty low-interest as rivalries go, but it would avoid knocking the ACC dominoes.

          • duffman says:


            UK views UL like tOSU views Cincy.

            The long term rival for UK is IU in basketball & football. As IU has been down, it has been one sided – but when IU comes back – UL will be a distant memory.

          • Kyle says:

            @ duffman

            That bad, eh? It’s not like UK has the football pedigree of Ohio State; I assumed that a long-term even series indicated some level of equality/respect.

          • FLP_NDRox says:

            @ Kyle

            I think the UK-U of L match up is much more of a hatefest than tOSU-Cincy. Let’s face it, tOSU doesn’t care, and Cincy’s only been good enough to give them a game in football in the last five years or so. I’d say the closer analogy is GT-UGa.

            Of course, since both UK and U of L are basketball schools, you notice it a lot more in the Dream Game than the Governor’s Cup.

          • duffman says:


            it comes from childhood, go to a high school game in Indiana or Kentucky and the competition starts from there. The weekend was the boys and girls games (2 in KY and 2 in IN) of high school all stars. It is IU vs UK rivalry in training. It is hard for many to fathom, but if you were born and raised in either state you know most states just do not have this level of obsession for basketball at such an early age.

            On football, IU and UK are not the stars of their respective conferences so the game has historically been heated as they are pretty level on the gridiron. If it helps think IU vs UK as hatfields vs mccoys. Think of UK vs UL as something to fill the time till IU gets strong again.

            IU vs UK in the in the old dome holds like 7 of the top 10 in attendance in the country for regular season non conference games. UL vs UK has not gotten to that level yet.

          • indydoug says:

            duffman, agreed about the Ind & Ky passion for hoops; also played in the KY-Ind hoops all-star game a few decades back. It’s intense.

        • mushroomgod says:

          I disagree with 14 being out of the question, esp. if Pac 16 comes into existence. Ultimately, in next 6-12 months, BT will go to 14 with or without ND>

    • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

      willarm1 – If A&M comes to the SEC and assuming that UTx and OU are off the the Pac 16, I think the SEC would have to look East for one team, then call expansion quits at 14. I seriously doubt that Mizzou, Baylor, Kansas, or FEDEXMemphis moves the needle enough for CBS/ESPN to pay for expansion.

      I continue to believe that FSU is the best choice for #14, but VA Tech is not far behind.

      • willarm1 says:

        +1 Alan.

        I hope they go ACC, because that would help The Big Ten get ND, because the ACC would likely take a BE school as filler.

        Giving Delany some wiggle room and the chance at staying at 14 with say Rutgers, ND or Pitt ND. etc.

        But the more I look at it Missouri may be a good block from Slive, not kicking the ACC bees nest for Delany. and lessening the chances at ND possibly.

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          willarm1 – Based on the last SEC expansion, and based on who the SEC is talking to this time, I really think the SEC is more interested in “fit” than the Big Ten. If the SEC got FSU or VA Tech, and they really wanted one of those schools, I don’t think they would care if their move made it more likely for the Big Ten to get UMd.

          To put it in NFL draft terms, UTx is the best available athlete, you take the best available athlete, otherwise draft for position needs.

          • willarm1 says:

            Agreed. Product would be more important.

            That damn chess analogy has me playing D.

            FSU would be a HR. Do you think florida would try to block?

            Va Tech also is a HR IMO. wish they were AAU.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            Willarm1 – I don’t know where all this UF to block FSU stuff is coming from. They play each other annually, so bringing FSU into the SEC frees up an OOC game for UF. Its very doubtful that UGA would block GA Tech for the same reason.

          • willarm1 says:

            Just so much recruiting competition in Florida but only one SEC team.

            With the unbelievable success of the conference I think it is a major selling point for Fla. over The U and Fla State.

            I can see Florida wanting to be the only show in town so to speak.

            I’m sure Meyer will bitch about it. that guy needs to relax a bit.

          • PSUGuy says:

            My understanding of the Florida FSU game is that it was basically state mandated and that the two schools fight fairly heavily in regards to state funding and where that funding goes.

            Don’t know it to be truth myself as all my info comes from sites like this, but FWIW.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            PSUGuy – FSU & UF do fight for state funding, but I fail to see why that would preclude them being in the same conference. UF did not stand in FSU’s way back in the 90s. FSU joined the ACC because of Bobby Bowdin. He thought FSU would have a better shot at national championships in the ACC.

          • Bamatab says:

            Alan, I’m almost 100% certain that UF, UGA, and Bama have blocked FSU from coming (all it takes is one more vote to officially block it but I don’t think Slive wants to test it). It boils down to recruiting. They want to keep their SEC membership as leverage when recruiting against FSU. A very prominent Bama sports reporter for the Tuscaloosa news (if you know anything about the Tuscaloosa news, you know who I’m talking about) stated on Tiderinsider that FSU’s neighbors have indeed blocked FSU (this reaffirms to me the rumor that I posted yesterday). Now this is coming from a Bama site and with Bama spin, but when this reporter talks, I usually listen (he is actually the only Bama beat writer that I give any credence what so ever to). I also read in another article (I can’t remember which one) that FSU, Clemson, and GT are off the table for now. Just passing along what’s being talked about over there.

          • Wes Haggard says:

            Do you think there might be time for Slive to discuss SEC membership with Pitt, Notre Dame and UNC to go with A&M?

          • Bamatab says:

            I think that there is still time (and I’m guessing that they probably are) for them to discuss it with OU.

          • Midwest Aggie says:

            Supposedly Oklahoma has reconfirmed earlier today their, “Thank you but no thanks to the SEC.”

          • Bamatab says:

            Midwest Aggie, You are probably right, but it isn’t over until it is over.

            With that said, what happened to OU? When did they lose their manhood and become UT’s lapdog? I used to think that they are one of the great historic football schools and marched to their own drum. I didn’t realize that they’d started breast feeding on UT’s teet :). They could really tighten the screws on UT right now if they at least stated that they’d listen to the SEC and at least gained some negotiating power when the Pac 16 details are decided.

          • Midwest Aggie says:

            OU sees their future secured at this time by being with Texas.

            The SEC path, though the payouts will roughly be the same as the PAC-XX, will be harder to rack up wins and get championships.

          • duffman says:

            WVU ==> NO WAY

            Va Tech ==> My bet for SEC

            a) new market
            b) fits with A&M
            c) football fanbase
            d) good academics
            f) good balance
            g) not mentioned in the NO list from earlier (FSU, Clemson, Miami, Ga Tech)
            h) SEC and ACC are ESPN

    • PSUGuy says:

      I fully expect the BigTen to go to 16 teams under the original timeline set up last December. IMO, this time (or maybe a bit earlier) next year we’ll see the “final four” or nothing.

      The Nebraska joining, I think, caught the BT by surprise as they realized they needed to act immediately to get them on board while the Pac was making its moves. Thus the “work on integration” comments.

  18. JDA says:


    Have been reading for months and can’t get enough. Question: If Big Ten can pry Notre Dame to add with Nebraska and what appears to be Rutgers, does it make sense to grab a No. 15 and 16? I know subscribers to BT Network are an important consideration but outside of Maryland – which seems like a very tough pry – there don’t seem to be many logical candidates that properly pay their freight.

    Second question: As a Louisville alum I would love to hear your detailed thoughts on the outlook for a program like ours. Great facilities, top AD and legitimate target for expansion if ACC or SEC look for add’l members or we’d be a linchpin for a revamped, football-only Big East. We just have to wait for others to act.

    • FLP_NDRox says:

      SEC would be a great landing site for the Cards…except I doubt UK will let that happen.

      I don’t know if the Academics are acceptable to the ACC? If they are, that’s likely where U of L will end up if the ACC goes to 16. But it’ll probably be a while before that happens. U of L will have to hope the Football Big East can hold together until then, otherwise it’s back to CUSA.

      • FLP_NDRox says:

        And I just now looked down and realized I posted that wearing my U of L baseball T-shirt.

        Before anyone gets the wrong Idea, I did wear my Play Like A Champion Today shirt to Mass this morning.

    • PSUGuy says:

      I fully expect a 15 and 16.

      IMO, if the three are Neb, ND, and Rutgers I push hard for Syracuse to help “ease” some of ND’s cultural fit concerns (while getting them to up there research $$$) and make sure we get the New York (state) tv markets.

      At which point do we think Mizzou or Pitt is better (I really like MD, I just don’t think they’ll be available).

      • jokewood says:

        add Notre Dame, Maryland, Syracuse, Rutgers to go along with Penn State, Ohio State, and (hopefully soon) Michigan, and the Big Ten will have a nice lacrosse league for the BTN.

    • duffman says:


      I am a CAF person, there is NO WAY UL finds a home in the SEC. I was around when TJ got RP. I have many family in da ville, and the problem is footprint. The Cards have made some big advances but they still fight UK in their home market (as a UC alum I know the feeling as they are the home university but UK and tOSU dominate the market). JH who got the new arena going has long ties to UK and many would fight if push came to shove.

      I had suggested a God & Country Conference that would have 8 catholic BB teams and the following FB teams..

      UC + UL (with catholic schools like X / Trinity in Louisville and X / Moeller in Cincinnati)

      Army + Navy

      BC + ND

      Uconn + Syracuse

      could be possible if ND could not keep BE status

      I think TJ has done wonders but for UL football to get to the next level they will have to stay strong for awhile so they become a destination job, not a stepping stone. HS put them on the right track and if JA makes it to frankfort with SB, it can not hurt Louisville long term. The day the CJ just has UL sports, and not IU + UK as well, you will know the Cards have hit that next level.

      At this point, If KU, K State ect join the BE, I think it will strengthen and is a good fit for UL for quite some time. I think whatever happens UL is in a pretty good spot so relax. They have made some academic upgrades, but need to make more if the ACC should call.

  19. K says:

    Emails… should get 5000 of them in the next few days. lol

  20. djinndjinn says:

    “The athletic department size disparity between Notre Dame and the Catholic Big East members is the equivalent of USC or UCLA moving their non-football sports to the West Coast Conference. That’s just not going to cut it for an athletic department of Notre Dame’s size and stature, no matter how much its alumni base believes football independence matters more than everything else combined.”

    Why is it exactly that this won’t cut it for Notre Dame? First, besides football and basketball, no other sports make any money–in fact, they’re money losers financed by football. Does anyone in any numbers really watch or follow any other sports? From this perspective, I can see why showing respect to the other sports is politically correct, but in the end, football decisions should be paramount. Not field hockey, volleyball or track. Particularly at Notre Dame where football appears to be so closely tied to their identity.

    While I’m not a domer, it’s hard for me to grasp the idea that they couldn’t stay independent in football and remain in the Catholic league for other sports–basketball, in fact, would be great. Maybe I’m a dinosaur, but I can’t see how any of the other sports should be dictating terms to the one sport that’s providing for them to even exist.

    • @djinnndjinn – ND spends a lot of money on its entire athletic department, which is something that schools without football programs can’t really do. The Irish could do that in theory, but it would be (1) worse competition, (2) lower revenue and (3) higher travel costs overall compared to the Big Ten. It’s extremely hard to justify taking less revenue AND throwing your non-revenue sports under the bus. Football is supposed to help all of those other sports instead of hurting them. Even for men’s basketball, the Big Ten Network monetizes that sport much better than the current Big East contract (and the disparity will be worse if there’s a split league).

      • TerryD says:


        You and I have had this discussion before. As you know, I have long held the opinion that ND will end up “sacrificing” its non-revenue sports in the end to save its football independence.

        I still hold this belief. You say that “its extremely hard to justify taking less revenue AND throwing your non-revenue sports under the bus.”

        Justify to whom?

        ND doesn’t have to justify such a move to its alumni, students and fan base.

        That is the move that the great majority of these constituents want ND to do.

        Justify to the Big Ten or the media? ND doesn’t care about that too much.

        In the end, you may be right and I may be wrong.

        I still think that, other than wishful thinking and opinions by non-ND folks.

      • Blood & Steel says:

        The big concern would be NDs olympic athletes. There is a lot of pride in the high level some of the ND athletes compete at and an all Catholic lead would greatly diminish that.

      • Dcphx says:

        Terry, I think they have to justify it to their own student population. I think ND has a pretty rich Olympic sport history that has significant value to the university. Is it enough to tip the scale? maybe.

    • PSUGuy says:

      IMO it stems from athletic culture. ND plays a lot of sports and likes to compete in all of them. If it doesn’t have a home for those sports those its puts a lot more stress (financially) on the football operations to support them.

      On the other hand the other Catholic schools tend to support a minimal amount of sports. Thus ND would literally have no one (in the conference) to play against and would be forced to travel far and possibly not even find teams to compete against, thus forcing them to shut down sports.

      Basically, Frank’s (interesting) point is that the line floated around here that the destruction of the BigEast would just allow ND to join an “all Catholic” sports conference might not hold up against athletic program realities.

    • jokewood says:

      Notre Dame has invested a lot of money into making their athletic program a perennial top 25 finisher in the Director’s Cup. you don’t drop your other sports teams into the minor leagues just so your football team can keep its independence. i guess they could, but i would respect Notre Dame even less.

      • zeek says:

        Swarbrick and the ND brass think in terms of what’s best for Notre Dame as a whole.

        This is like how a lot of UT fans want UT to be in the SEC just to be in the conference with the best athletic fit.

        (Just insert ND for UT and the notion of independence for the conference discussion)

  21. OrangeAndTheCity says:

    FROM the Pitt Scout page:

    Here is What the ACC Should Try and Implement.
    (1) Add Pittsburgh, Syracuse, and UConn

    All are Tier 1 institutions with Pitt and Cuse being AAU members. Syracuse will rebound at football at some point in the future and have an elite basketball program. Same with UConn being elite in basketball, they are also a good football program currently. Pitt brings both football and basketball to the conference. Large TV markets are also added with these three teams (and in Pitt’s case, a good national numbers as well).

    (2) Offer Notre Dame their Independence in Football

    Notre Dame is Notre Dame and I respect them for holding to tradition and history despite the Big Ten’s greed trying to break them from both those aspects. ACC should offer Notre Dame the following agreement:

    –Notre Dame remains an independent in football, though will arrange to play 4 games each year against ACC opponents (2 home and 2 away each season)
    –Notre Dame will be able to participate in ACC bowl scenarios based on record and ranking to determine which bowls may select them.
    –Full members in basketball and non-revenue sports
    –Full academic member

    (3) Decide on Rutgers or WVU

    WVU brings much greater appeal and better athletics than Rutgers by far, but their biggest issue will be academics. I mean in the scenario above, the ACC is the best academic conference in the country. Adding WVU and their Tier 3 status would hurt that “bragging rights”. Also while they have some decent national appeal when looking at TV ratings previously, they dont bring much in terms of market being in a state with no major cities. Rutgers on the other hand brings academics and the “potential” for NYC to be tapped in the future for football (basketball it would remain access to that talent level for the major players in the ACC). Rutgers does not bring much appeal locally or nationally with their athletics though. Its also possible Rutgers may already be or prefer the mid-west conference for additional revenue over athletic appeal.

    There are other non-BCS teams that could be reasonably considered, but these two is where I think it would ultimately come down to in the end.

    (4) Review the ESPN Agreement

    According to our ACC friends, the ACC-ESPN TV agreement has only been agreed to in principle but remains unsigned at this time. This would have to instantly be reviewed and negotiated to account for the new teams, markets, and appeal they bring. If the right amount and TV dates overall are agreeable, then go that route. If not, agree only for the major TV deals and consider starting an ACC Network which should do extremely well given the basketball teams in the conference. Look for a partnership with say Comcast (who will own NBC by that time and who by the way also has a deal with Notre Dame) to start it off similar to the BTNs deal with Fox/DirectTV.

    (5) Neutral Site Championship Game is Finished

    Play the game at the home stadium of the highest ranked/best record team in the conference. All revenue generated by the game will go to the collective pot that gets dealt out following bowl games. Otherwise, the ACC Championship game at a neutral site right before bowl season with only a week to prepare for fans’ travel is going to still be a low attended event in most years.

    (6) New Bowl Deals

    Pinstripe Bowl would come into the fold with the new ACC + Notre Dame affiliation and would probably be against the new Big Ten. Considering they are already paying $2 million per team, the new teams adding to the mix with New York Cities appeal could add additional money to the pot.

    Other games would also soon be up for debate including Big East and Big 12 deals that will be looking for teams.

    (7) A New Basketball Era

    People cannot ignore the ACC’s tradition in basketball. Cannot also ignore that the conference up until now has revolved around the state of North Carolina. But adding these teams also add markets, including one that is called the Mecca of Basketball…Madison Square Garden. With two divisions likely to separate the ACC in this expansion (one with focus in the North and one in the South), consider rotating the game between NYC and say Raleigh. Or extend that one further and just rotate the game each year between select northern facilities (Consol Energy Center, Madison Square Garden, Wachovia Center, Verizon Center, etc) and southern facilities (TWC Arena, Phillips Arena, American Airlines Arena, etc). A conference championship game would be decent and well traveled to in any of these places.

    (8) Improve the ACCIAC

    The IAC is the relative equivalent to the Big Ten’s CIC. The funding for the program comes directly from the athletic programs as it is today. Study abroad, conference, visiting scholars, grants/scholarships, etc are all part of the current IAC. What should happen is a proposal to really and truly come together as research institutions and focus on research activities between conference members where there is a good fit. An ACCIAC research database of all current project would be shared within the conference with contact information available for partnerships and potential to work on grants and other funding together. Could really help improve all conference members.

    • Hank says:

      no special deals. if Notre Dame doesn’t want to join then they won’t join. no special deal.

    • Phil says:

      Pitt fans have just gone off the deep end over the idea that location has made Rutgers a potential Big Ten candidate and basically cost Pitt an easy invitation (because they fit almost every other criteria).

      That is the only way they can possibly say “Rutgers does not bring much appeal locally” when RU has expanded their stadium because of demand and Pitt has trouble drawing fans to their rented stadium. In addition, Pitt’s poor history of bowl travel is one of the reasons the Big East has such crappy bowl tie-ins.

    • K says:

      Big East Teams will not move until Big Ten makes their decisions… if you are on a short list of possible Big Ten teams (Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse, not so much UCONN) why take your name off the list.

      • Phil says:

        I don’t know about the other schools but I don’t see a way Rutgers could refuse an ACC invitation if it came in the near term. Rutgers experience as an independent before 1992 would have to scare them into taking the sure thing ACC spot instead of waiting for a Big Ten invite that might never come.

        • zeek says:

          I’m pretty sure Rutgers would call the Big Ten and say they got an ACC invite.

          I’m also pretty certain that the Big Ten would trump the offer.

          Delany wants NYC. Rutgers is the best possible shot at NYC with a school not named Notre Dame.

        • yatesc says:

          I’d go a step further: every Big East football program would accept an invite from the SEC, ACC, or Big Ten at the drop of a hat. Every single one.

      • ezdozen says:

        I don’t know. The A.C.C. should grab Syracuse, UConn, Pitt, and WVU and see what happens.

        That gives them a Northern side that is BC, UConn, Syracuse, Pitt, WVU, Virginia, Maryland, and Va Tech. A Southern side of Duke, UNC, NC State, Wake, Clemson, Ga Tech, Miami, Florida St.

        Strong in football, incredible basketball, and not too shabby in a variety of other minor sports too.

        Covers all of the NE to Florida, except for the PA/NJ area. It’s Joe Paterno’s dream come true, only without him.

        Pitt, Syracuse, UConn, and WVU would jump at the opportunity to have a landing place. WVU is not a B10 candidate. Pitt, Syracuse, and UConn have to be concerned with being left out of the B10.

        Rutgers then gets to be with Missouri, hoping that being a frontrunner out of the gate was worth it.

        • Kyle says:

          There’ll be no jumping at the opportunity because:

          1] All of those schools are extremely wary of the ACC because of the way they conducted the 2003 raid and how mediocre the conference has been since then. if both the ACC and Big East lose teams, they will probably put bygones aside and circle the wagons, but until then…

          2] Pitt and Syracuse have a considerable interest in monitoring Big Ten invites until Delaney announces an end to expansion. So they wouldn’t dream of taking the sure-money ACC deal when Big Ten spots are still out there. Both are great enough schools/brands that the ACC should be willing to wait for them.

          • mushroomgod says:

            Kyle—Syracuse might rightfully believe that the ACC is the better match. And Pitt fans are pretty much 50-50 between the ACC and BT>

    • PSUGuy says:

      Good plan and one I think the ACC should implement.

      As some have mentioned though, who’s going to jump there when there’s a legitimate shot of going to the BigTen?

      • Bamatab says:

        That is only a good plan if the ACC hasn’t signed their tv contract yet. They should’ve held off until all this expansion plays out.

        • zeek says:

          I agree with Bamatab. The fact that the ACC has signed their TV deals and that they’re not likely to get them renegotiated means they have to stand pat (which I assume is what he was implying).

          • Bamatab says:

            That is what I was implying. According to what Orange posted here, The Pitt scout site appears to be claiming that the ACC hasn’t officially signed the contract. If that is the case, then they can expand and renegotiate. But if they haven’t, then they are out of luck as far as I can tell.

          • ezdozen says:

            If their lawyers did not have SOME sort of provision recognizing that “seismic shifts” were imminent, I’d be shocked and disappointed. Having to rely on delayed signing seems like a very non-professional way to do it.
            There has to be more…

        • Dcphx says:

          I’ve seen an ESPN employee who is a GT alumni indicate that the contract hasn’t been signed by either the ACC or ESPN. Nothing holding it up other than the lawyers doing their billable hour dance.

        • indydoug says:

          If the lawyers who negotiated the ACC TV deal did not include an opt out if expansion occurs,… they may want to pull out their malpractice policy!

  22. djinndjinn says:

    I completely agree that A&M should go with the SEC. Cash, stability, proximity, football tradition, and culture all suggest the SEC is the way to go. Plus they are a huge and good quality school on their own. There is no reason to stay in Texas’ shadow.

    I’d make the same case of Oklahoma, in fact.

  23. amccr80 says:

    just adding

  24. mmc22 says:

    @ Frank
    You forgot to tell everybody about the new post. A lot of us get the replies through e-mail.

  25. FLP_NDRox says:

    This was scarier 2 weeks ago, when the Big East was looking at choosing between UCF, ECU, and Memphis. Now they could likely get KU and Mizzou to replace two. Frank’s information is likely better than my speculation, but it seems to me that a split if the Big East loses two is no longer a foregone conclusion.

    As for the viability of the non-football Big East as a conference, that could be tricky. Five Baseball playing schools, five lax schools, and Six Men’s Tennis schools don’t really make it seem like a big time conference. That said, the Lax league is new. Big Ten only has three lacrosse teams: tOSU men’s, tOSU women, and Northwestern women.

    The question of viability for Notre Dame will be answered if bringing in other schools will be cost-effective. If the league can go to twelve, bringing in at least 3 baseball and lax teams, that should sure up the conference. I’ll leave it to Tags and Marinatto to come up with that list, since isn’t that what we’re paying them for? So what if it’s nowhere near as good as the Big East, it’s a home for the non-revenue sports.

    The real question for me in all of this is what TPTB at ND want. Citing the Olympic sports as an excuse for PR purposes is a no go. The reason they are non-revenue is because not enough people care.

    • omnicarrier says:

      FLP – “The real question for me in all of this is what TPTB at ND want. Citing the Olympic sports as an excuse for PR purposes is a no go. The reason they are non-revenue is because not enough people care.”

      Perhaps FANS don’t care about them but I’m not sure that is how the ND admins view them.

      But I agree THAT alone will not be enough. I think it’s the cumulative effect that might ND succumb unless the ACC throws them a life-raft similar to their current BE deal.

      As for the olympic sports, I think it is more than simply can the Catholic League field the number of teams the current Big East does (they will not), but it goes to the competitiveness of the conference and to the sub-par facilities in which these olympic sports will be competing.

      Of the bb schools, the only two that field competitive teams in multiple sports on a consistent basis are St. John’s and Georgetown.

      Since the New Big East Formed (Non-Football Championships)

      ND – 50 (16, that first year 2005-06, haven’t been as dominating since)
      UL – 31
      UConn – 27
      SU – 13
      G’Town – 10
      St. John’s – 10

      All the rest are single digits of 6 or less (basically 1 a year or less).

      Last 4 years -

      ND – 34
      UL – 27
      UConn – 19
      SU – 12 (would be more if men’s lacrosse was in play all 5 years)
      G’Town – 10
      St. John’s – 10

      Here is an excerpt from Fall 2003 written by John Heisler, Assistant AD at Notre Dame, something I’m sure you are aware of FLP, but non-Irish fans might not be:

      “In 1980 most of Notre Dame’s Olympic sports were fledgling at best. Scholarships were minimal, if not nonexistent, for many Irish sports. Those teams weren’t expected to compete for national titles (the perennially successful fencing program was an exception), and there were no budgets to recruit or schedule nationally.

      Now, while Notre Dame football intrinsically hasn’t changed all that much over these past 23 years, the college football landscape has — and so has the commitment to Notre Dame’s 25 other sports.

      As Athletic Director Gene Corrigan and successors **** RosenthIal and Wadsworth gradually increased the institutional commitment to the various Olympic sports programs, Notre Dame outgrew its independent status. That prompted a move (for most sports except football and men’s basketball) to the Midwest City Conference (later the Midwestern Collegiate Conference) in 1982-83. The move created a new series of meaningful goals that included league titles, all-conference honors and guaranteed access to NCAA postseason competition. Suddenly, Irish games took on greater importance when the players knew first place was on the line. And, as Notre Dame further ramped up its institutional commitments, the Irish became the dominant program in the MCC, eventually outgrowing that level of competition.

      That dominance and the interest in creating better platforms from which its basketball programs could compete prompted a move to the Big East Conference for the 1995-96 athletic season.”

      • FLP_NDRox says:

        Well, the MCC was going downhill at that point. In 1994, the conference was:

        Detroit Mercy
        La Salle
        Clev. St.
        Wright St.
        and ND.

        As a Catholic conference in the beginning, it was OK. But once the MCC started adding teams adding a hypen, it was time to move on for the Irish.

        I can see why if I’m the ND AD why I would consider recommending joining the Big Ten. That said, considering what we are discussing is the most major political issue in ND’s universe, I can’t imagine this decision will be based on Olympic sports. If the administration decides to go to the Big Ten, in light of I can’t see how they can use the we need a conference for the other sports argument in any way that will mollify anyone.

        • omnicarrier says:

          Agree, but I believe Swarbrick has said what it will take and ND fans are closing their eyes shut to what it will take.

          First and foremost, the seismic change in college athletics. If the Pac-10 and SEC go BEYOND 12, then that seismic change is coming.

          Second, if the stability of the Big East is threatened. By him constantly mentioning it, don’t you think he is saying quite explicitly, a Catholic Big East League will not suffice?

          • FLP_NDRox says:


            Good point. At the end of the day, though, it’s not his call. I can see why he might make the recommendation, but it’s still merely a recommendation.

          • zeek says:

            I tend to agree with both of your points actually.

            The only way I see ND having to join a conference is if the Big Ten, SEC, and Pac-10 are all approaching 16 and considering 9 game conference schedules.

            If the ACC looks ready to raid the Big East at that point, I could see ND possibly joining a conference.

            But as of now, the Pac-10 is at 11, the SEC and Big Ten are at 12.

            Over the next week, we might see the Pac-16 and SEC-13, but we really have to wait.

            Quite a few more dominoes have to fall before ND has to make a decision about anything…

      • Bullet says:

        This is actually a great argument for ending football independence. I think their independence hurts their w/l record. And the national schedule is really the NBC schedule. Prior to the NBC contract, ND usually scheduled 6 to 7 games against teams from Chicago to Boston. That sounds pretty regional to me. The SEC didn’t even mandate 7 games until late 70s or early 80s.

        • FLP_NDRox says:

          the national schedule is really the NBC schedule. Prior to the NBC contract, ND usually scheduled 6 to 7 games against teams from Chicago to Boston.

          1949 ND Sched

          1966 ND Sched

          1977 ND Sched
          Ole Miss
          Air Force
          Texas (Cotton Bowl)

          Looks pretty national to me. Try again.

          • Bullet says:

            You probably had to look long and hard for 77.

            How about 67:
            Michigan St.
            Miami FL

            or 78
            Michigan St.
            Air Force
            Miami FL

            Maybe all the GT and Miami FL talk is about Notre Dame. They played both pretty regularly in the 60s/70s.

            ND schedule was pretty standard in those years. They played Purdue, Mich. St., NW (until they got really bad), Pitt (until they got really good), Navy, USC, and usually GT and Miami FL.

    • pioneerlion says:


      The “non-revenue” sports also include those women’s sports required by Title IX, which is heavily influenced by the 85 scholies for men’s football. ND must maintain the women’s sports, or risk Title IX lawsuits which they will invariably lose.

      They can chip away at the other men’s sports, but only for so long until it upsets a critical mass of overly involved, very rich, alumni fathers/mothers of said men’s “non-revenue” athletes.

      Your view just kicks the can down the road a bit, but it continues to stay in the way.

  26. Mikey says:

    Have you seen this story going around on the Aggie forum as well as some of the SEC forums (RollTide for sure).. This UF grad lays out his theory that the Big Ten, Pac10, and Texas are all in collusion with ABC/ESPN. Any thoughts ??

    • Midwest Aggie says:

      The guy has an interesting take, but most likely wrong — cue in the X-Files song.

      The demise of the Big12 was done internally and years ago. Greed is most likely the culprit, and in fact it could be tied back to the SWC days. Texas, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas A&M have blame to carry — and since then the rich wanted more at the expense of the others.

      As for the money that ABC got to save from the demise of the Big12 and its ability to use it to the newer and bigger conferences like Big10 and PAC10, that is not the whole story. The Big12 television contract was absolutely horrible for not only money payouts but also getting games on the television – even before the day of the SEC and Big10 getting new contracts. The Big12 schools were paid at the bottom end of the spectrum and any new payout will be larger for these programs as they move to new conferences. The Big10 and the SEC commissioners are professional guys that seem to have some acumen when it comes to business (unlike our last two Big12 commissioners).

      Speaking for myself as a former student, my biggest complaint about the Texas strong arm tactics has been the media leaks. The spin has always been on how it affects Texas and their bottom line.

      The loss of the Thanksgiving Day game between Texas and Texas A&M will not occur. Regardless of how Deloss Dodds bellows. The politicians would not allow for this. It is interesting that there is an internet rumor that Texas is wanting to move its game with Oklahoma from October at the state fair to an early December game at Jerry Jones’ stadium — probably to put more highlight on their conference game.

      • Bullet says:

        If A&M goes to SEC and P16 has 9 game schedule, I can see the game going away for a few years until schedules can be adjusted. I don’t see it going away permanently.

        I can’t imagine the OU game NOT being at the state fair at the Cotton Bowl. Its such a huge part of the experience. Jerry would have to offer a ton of money-or move the state fair.

  27. Scott C says:

    Interesting tweets from Steve Sipple of the Lincoln Journal Star.


    @ssipplesports – Am I missing something here? Is Orangebloods now reporting news, and then shooting down its OWN reports? Interesting.

    @ssipplesports – Actually, that’s bizarre.

    @ssipplesports – Bizarre and disturbing.

    @ssipplesports – I refute a report that I went to McDonald’s today. But I did THINK about going to McDonald’s, so that’s probably close enough. Go with it!


    • Midwest Aggie says:

      Is this in regards of the Chip Brown tweet/story saying A&M turned down the PAC10 offer, to only recant later?

  28. greg says:

    Hawkeyes are #76!!!

  29. Sportsman24 says:

    I’d like to remind everyone that UNL is ALREADY a member of the BT. We no longer need to include them on our wish lists! ; )

    BTW, does UNL have a vote on the rest of expansion? Or some type of voice?

    • zeek says:

      No, they do not have a vote at the council of presidents meetings until July 1, 2011 I believe…

      Informally though, Nebraska will be involved in any discussion because of the ramifications on travel of adding Rutgers/Maryland/etc.

  30. indydoug says:


  31. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    NCAA Baseball Super Regional Update:

    Florida defeated Miami last night to qualify for the CWS.
    So far today, 3 other teams qualified for the CWS.
    TCU won their S.R. over UTx, 2 games to 1.
    Florida State won their S.R. over Vandy 2 games to 1.
    South Carolina won their S.R. over Coastal Carolina, 2 games to zero.

    Also, Congrats to the Texas A&M Aggies for sweeping the men’s and women’s outdoor NCAA Outdoor Track & Field National Championships, with Coach Pat Henry (who they stole from LSU) leading the way.

    • Wes Haggard says:

      Thanks Alan. Yep, we did steal him. May need to steal another great coach if the present coaches don’t live up to SEC competition.

      • Midwest Aggie says:

        We will let them keep Les Miles. Just kidding with you Alan – seriously, is his job in jeopardy this year?

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          mwAggie – Les Miles is not in trouble. He’s 2 years removed from a national championship. For his first three years, LSU caught almost every break, and he was a great coach. He was called the Mat Hatter, and Lesticles for his gutsy calls. Then he kicked a five star quarterback off the team, had some bad luck, and gets caught up in the excitement of the game a little too much, but the players love him, he recruits like a maniac, he has a great staff, and he’s a good human being. LSU is in good hands, but some people around here will never accept him, because he’s not Nick Saban.

  32. willarm1 says:

    The Decline Begins TCU 4 UT 1

  33. mmc22 says:

    @ FLP_NDRox
    Remember went I brought up the second part of the Northwestern blog rumor and everybody said it cannot be true and will never fly? I told you; this kind of leak will make J. Delany “livid” and you guys trust your catholic friends too much.

  34. Hangtime79 says:

    Great post over at TexAgs reading like the Pelican Brief: Lots of great points.

    • zeek says:

      Great points about what?

      The Big Ten and Pac-10 and SEC were all self-interested in wanting Texas.

      I don’t buy most of that; Delany probably didn’t really think that the Pac-10 would make a “Texas +5″ offer and was interested in Texas-ND.

      Plus, it’s not as if the Big Ten or Pac-10 can stop the SEC from talking to ACC schools or Big East schools.

  35. Nostradamus says:

    Sorry if already posted, but Larry Scott is headed to Lawrence.

    • OT says:

      Be suspicious of the flight plans filed with the FAA by the pilot of the corporate jet with tail nubmer N228PK.

      The pilot changed flight plans in mid-flight TWICE on Sunday:

      1. In the morning, the pilot filed a flight plan to land at Huntsville (TX), only to change course in mid-flight and landed at College Station airport.

      2. In the afternoon, the pilot filed a flight plan to land at San Marcos, only to request a flight plan change with the FAA in mid-flight to land at Austin International Airport.


      The flight plan filed by the pilot has the jet departing Austin at 8:10pm Central Time and an estimated time of arrival at Kansas City International (MCI) at 9:48pm Central Time.

      We also know that Lawrence, Kansas does have a general aviation airport with a long-enough runway (5700 feet) for corporate jets to land.

      If the jet were to land in Kansas City or Lawrence tonight, then Pac-10 officials (Commissioner Larry Scott and Deputy Commissioner Kevin Weiberg) will be in Lawrence on Monday to meet with University of Kansas officials.

      That would be the “TELL” to signal that Texas A&M has already turned down the Pac-10 and will head for the SEC.

      We’ll know soon enough.

      • FLP_NDRox says:

        So, KU over Utah? Interesting.

        • OT says:

          The Pac-10 appears to be more interested in Kansas than Utah, but Kansas will ultimately decide where it wants to go.

          I still have my money on Utah to the “Pac-16″.


          Because Kansas is a better fit with the Big East, especially if the Big East were willing to take Missouri and Kansas State as well so that Kansas can maintain its natural rivalries.

          (The Big East will have to choose between Iowa State and Memphis to fill out the “west” division of a proposed 12-team football league, being spearheaded by Cincinnati and Louisville.)

          • allthatyoucantleavebehind says:

            Big East is basketball. Kansas would head there without any rivals. Big East makes no money.

            The PAC16 will make decent money. They’d head there with longtime rivals OU, OkSt, Texas?, Texas Tech?, Colorado. PAC16 has football cred.

            Kansas would be stupid to head east instead of west if the offer is there.

          • Kyle says:

            @ allthatyoucantleavebehind

            The point is Kansas my not get a Pac-16 ticket (or may get one one be politically unable to ditch K-state). The Big East idea is that the Big East would take ALL of the Big XII orphans, not just Kansas in a vacuum. Kansas, K-state, iowa state, maybe baylor and Mizzou in a western division with louisville and Cincy.

            This could only happen late in the expansion game, after the principal movers are settled and the remainder of the Big East has made it’s Football/Catholic split.

          • indydoug says:

            Do you have any inside info on UC & UL spearheading this BE12 FB conf?

        • Gumbynuts says:

          Is it possible that KU/KSU are a contingency plan in case OU decides to join aTm in the SEC.

        • Can't Get Enough says:

          What does San Marcos have to do with anything?

        • TheBaron says:

          “So, KU over Utah? Interesting.”

          No. Kansas is a contingency plan in case if Oklahoma goes to the SEC. Multiple legit sources both inside and outside of UU have confirmed that Utah is already in the PAC, whether it’s PAC-12 or PAC-16. (Sorry I can’t divulge more.)

          The deal is already inked; the announcement is pending. The announcement will come sometime next week. The exact time is up in the air due to the politics of the UT situation. The plane that was scheduled for Kansas is irrelevant to Utah.

          I’m not surprised that nobody hear believes me, as people here clearly consider Utah second tier to KU. The PAC obviously doesn’t, as a contract of sorts is already in place. Maybe once the PAC announcement is made Utah will get more respect. Probably not. C’est la vie.

          Queue the contrary replies citing BS newspaper and twitter sources. Time will prove them wrong.

          • TheBaron says:

            Also, and this part is just my opinion, I will be shocked if this PAC-16 thing actually goes down; especially if OU agrees to join TAMU in the SEC.

            I can’t imagine that the KU contingency plan will be very attractive to UT in the end. I’m sure UT wants to stay with OU and KU is a poor replacement, considering how deep the ties are between OU and UT.

            I can’t begin to imagine UT agreeing to be in a division with AZ, AZS, CU, UU, KU, TT and OSU. If OU opts out, I imagine the entire Big 12/PAC deal will die, if it’s not already dead.

            I expect a PAC-12, but that’s just me. Most Utah insiders are still expecting a PAC-16 with UT, TT, OU, OSU, CU, UU, AZ, AZS. I’ll believe it when I see it.

      • Nostradamus says:

        Nothing suspicious about that. It isn’t like they are filling for one airport and changing to one hundreds of miles away.

  36. James says:

    Joe Paterno’s record against Pitt is 23-7-1. Over no sustained period was Pitt ever considered an “equal” to Penn State. I’ll put my nose down now.

    • Kyle says:

      just because the football team often lost to paterno doesn’t mean the overall athletic department wasn’t considered Penn State’s equal.
      More importantly, this is an issue about the university as a whole, not merely football records.

    • omnicarrier says:

      Pitt is a Top 20 football program all-time. Behind Penn State, but it’s not as though the Nits have cracked the Top 10 yet either. Closer than Pitt, but Pitt’s brand name would be better than A&M’s if it played in a better league, imho.

      • m (Ag) says:

        All time winning percentage:

        24. Texas A&M 59.757%
        37. Pittsburgh 57.819%

        Winning Percentage since 1975

        20: Texas A&M 64.489%
        31. Pittsburgh 57.786%

        Texas A&M would be better known if it wasn’t in a conference built around the UT/OU rivalry

        • omnicarrier says:

          Pitt has 9 NCs to A&M’s 2 to balance that out.

          So I’ll amend it to “a brand name as good as A&M’s” and call it a night. ;)

          • James says:

            Eight of Pitt’s 9 “NCs”, as you call them, came before 1938 and are as credible as many of Alabama’s.

            Pitt’s reputation as a football program has been the most overblown discussion point during this whole process. They don’t even have an on-campus stadium, and the one they borrow from the steelers often looks like this:


          • yatesc says:

            Seconding what James said.

            Pitt fills their stadium about as well as the Pirates fill PNC Park.

            They’re a bad match for the Big Integer.

      • Pezlion says:

        “but it’s not as though the Nits have cracked the Top 10 yet either”

        Uh, what?? You must be crazy.

        Please explain how being 7th all-time in wins and 9th all-time in winning percentage means you haven’t cracked the top 10? Not to mention the 2nd most wins in the last 50 years, behind only Nebraska.

        • omnicarrier says:

          I’m going by the cfbwarehouse All-Time rankings where PSU is 12th right now.

          It factors in championships and big bowl points as well as wins and winning %.

          If all we did was go by wins and winning % Syracuse is the 6th best bb program of all-time ahead of Indiana and Louisville.

  37. GreatLakeState says:

    Let me get this logic straight:
    Adding two undeserving teams to get ND = acceptable
    Adding one undeserving team (Tech) to get TX & ND = unacceptable

    • K says:

      Adding Rutgers and Pitt/Syracuse is acceptable.
      Adding WV and Louisville is not.

    • omnicarrier says:

      GreatLakeState – “Let me get this logic straight:
      Adding two undeserving teams to get ND = acceptable
      Adding one undeserving team (Tech) to get TX & ND = unacceptable:

      It’s all a matter of perspective.

      Let’s say it takes Pitt and SU to get ND.

      Pitt is a Top 20 football program of all-time and SU is in the Top 40. Both are AAU members and both rank in the 50s on USNews college rankings.

      Texas Tech on the other hand, ranks in the 60s in terms of all-time football programs, ranks behind SU in terms of wins and winning percentage, is not AAU and is a Tier 3 institution.

      This notion many fans posting on this blog have that ALL of the invitees have to be HR additions is simply wrong.

      An expansion to 16 needs 2 Elite Programs for the national TV contracts and three programs that will add cable subscribers to the BTN.

    • ezdozen says:

      I am a Big East guy, but I don’t get it either. EVERY school in the list has warts.

      Texas Tech’s warts should have been minimal enough to allow a Texas, TTU, T A&M addition to the Big 10.

      Add Missouri and call it a day.

      Who cares if the academics are not up to snuff? These are not middling schools. Being associated with the Big 10 would BRING THEM up to snuff.

      • omnicarrier says:

        “Who cares if the academics are not up to snuff? These are not middling schools. Being associated with the Big 10 would BRING THEM up to snuff.”

        Disagree. WVU being associated with ND, G’Town, BC, SU, Pitt, Rutgers, UConn, Nova etc. hasn’t elevated its academic standing. And there’s nothing wrong with that in my eyes. It’s there to serve the populace of West Virginia, not the athletic conference it resides in.

        But if it wanted to change, it still comes down to mission and how much the state (if it’s public) and the institution (if it’s private) is willing to make the cultural changes to get it upgraded academically.

        • yatesc says:

          That’s a great way to put it. While I’d love to see WVU move out of Tier 3—only partially because it would increase the value of my diploma—it might not be in the best interest of the people of West Virginia to do so. (Raising academic standards takes a lot of money, something not generally found in WV.)

  38. Bullet says:


    Your points about SEC and A&M all make sense but don’t take one factor into account-recruiting. Texas was wide open in the failing years of the SWC. After the formation of the B12, Texas, OU and A&M get who they want. Then the rest of the B12 pretty much gets who they want. There’s still a lot of talent, but the top prospects stay close. If the Aggies go to SEC, you’ve got two conferences, P10 and SEC poaching Texas. In the B12, Texas, OU and A&M were at the top of the league, except for Nebraska who never recruited Texas as heavily as the rest of the league. In the P16, only the Arizona schools are likely to make much of an investment in Texas. In the SEC, Arkansas will come back, LSU will get more players and we’ll have to compete with TN, Auburn, Alabama and UGA.

    I think its likely to hurt UT, OU and A&M. I don’t think its any coincidence that OU and UT were both down in the early 90s.

    Just as an anecdotal story, my old HS has had 2 great teams. From the one in the 80s, there were 3 top flite players-2 players went to Miami FL and 1 went to UNL. Every longtime UNL fan would recognize him. From the B12 era, the top player went to UT and was in the Rose Bowl vs. USC.

    • PSUGuy says:

      Which is why UT wants TAMU to come with it to the Pac. To guarantee the continued success and lack of outside “poaching” of Texas talent.

      Not to say they’ll lose the “shirts off their backs” if TAMU joins the SEC, but I do think the SEC will have much better recruiting than if not.

    • Midwest Aggie says:

      Under Callahan at Nebraska, the recruiting in Texas came to a trickle and stopped. The new guy at Nebraska is getting some good talent this year from Texas.

      LSU gets recruits from Texas, and the last couple of years has been cherry-picking them.

      The opening of the Texas recruiting grounds will not hurt Texas as they are getting top talent right now. Mack Brown has a machine that is running very well (it really hurts me to type that). Oklahoma may become one to cherry-pick Texas talent as they become focused on the new western markets open to them now. Texas Tech has more chance of getting hurt by getting kids only west of DFW and the Brazos River (though Tuberville seems to be going in a positive direction right now). Oklahoma State is going to be in for a world of hurt when it comes to recruiting Texas talent.

    • m (Ag) says:

      “I think its likely to hurt UT, OU and A&M. I don’t think its any coincidence that OU and UT were both down in the early 90s.”

      A&M’s worst record in the 1990s= 6-6 (1996)

      A&M’s 2nd worst record= 8-4 (1999)

      Every other year in the 1990′s A&M had at least 9 wins.

      UT may be frightened about conditions in the early 90s, but A&M shouldn’t be.

      • Bullet says:

        Jackie “probation” Sherrill got the Aggies winning and arranged for them to spend a good part of the early 90s on probation before he resigned. Never found a school he couldn’t win at. Never found a school he couldn’t get on probation.

        When not on probation how many bowl games did the Aggies win during the closing years of the SWC? I don’t recall very many. Texas wasn’t winning bowl games either because SWC wasn’t competitive nationally.

  39. wyzerman says:

    Another “bidder” for Texas

    Source: Chances of Big 12′s survival looks ‘significantly greater’
    The Kansas City Star

    It looks as if Big 12 banners will no longer fly at the Sprint Center.

    COLUMBIA | A source close to Big 12 Conference realignment negotiations has told The Star that chances for the league to stay together are “significantly greater than 24 hours ago.”

    The same source said that a new television contract being touted by Commissioner Dan Beebe could produce “significantly more” than $17 million for each of the remaining 10 Big 12 schools. Perhaps upwards of $20 million per school.

    And, that a departure penalty of around $20 million withheld from Colorado and Nebraska would mean $2 each to the remaining Big 12 members.

    That, of course, is dependent on there being a Big 12 Conference beyond the 2010-2011 academic year. Last week Colorado agreed to leave for the Pac 10 Conference and Nebraska agreed to join the Big Ten Conference. It was anticipated that Pac 10 Commissioner Larry Scott, over the weekend, had made offers to Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

    But on Sunday morning, word began to filter in to media outlets all over the Big 12 – from the Texas site Orangebloods to The Star, that Beebe’s efforts to halt mass exodus from the Big 12 might be gaining at least a tenuous foothold.

    A source close to the realignment negotiations suggested that Texas – the key to league survival in its present form – would likely gain concessions for “getting to play the hero.”

    It was concessions to Texas – for example in the form of uneven revenue distribution – on which an unstable foundation was laid when the Southwest Conference and the Big Eight Conference merged.

    “There is a price,” the source said. “But the price is worth it, or its a price we have to pay.”

    Sunday was a day of news confirmed and news denied in the case of Texas A&M.

    Chad Moller, media relations director for Missouri, confirmed a Big 12 official had informed Missouri, late Sunday afternoon, that Texas A&M had turned down an offer to join the Pac 10.

    At about the same time, the site – devoted to Texas A&M athletics – reported the Aggies had turned down the Pac 10 and that they “will be the newest member of the Southeastern Conference.”

    Barely had those statements been made than officials at Texas A&M denied the Aggies’ had commimtted to the SEC or spurned the Pac 10.

    According to A&M spokesman Jason Cook told “Texas A&M continues to evaluate its options. At this point, all options continue to be on the table.”

    That, at least for one more day, seemed to leave open the option of Big 12 survival.

    Still out there is the obvious specter of dissolution. If the Pac 10 can convince even three more of the Big 12 South schools to leave, then the Big 12‘s days are numbered.

    As for Missouri, a special meeting of the Board of Curators set for 8 o’clock on Sunday night is expected to serve as nothing more than an opportunity for athletic director Mike Alden to brief the curators, systems president Gary Forsee and MU Chancellor Brady Deaton of the options available to Mizzou.

    In fact, no officials are anticipated to be in actual attendance at the meeting at University Hall. Each will likely be hooked into a teleconference link.

    Alden declined an interview with The Star on Sunday afternoon and once again official comments from MU officials have dwindled to no definitive comments at all.

    Speculation continues to list Missouri’s possible options – beyond staying in the Big 12 – as eventual inclusion in the Big Ten if it grows to 14 or 16, or possibly becoming of interest to the SEC. The Big East – if it loses members to other leagues – might welcome in Missouri as well as Kansas, according to several speculative reports. And, the Mountain West Conference, looking to move forward to gaining a BCS berth, has been reported to be looking into taking Missouri, Kansas, Kansas State and Iowa State.

    Moller said he could neither confirm nor deny anything about realignment involving Missouri outside the Big 12.

    • Ross Hatton says:

      I’d like to see the math behind a 10 member Big 12 making as much as the current Big Ten network makes, especially if Texas is still looking to have its own network.

      I can’t believe that the league would somehow have become strong enough to match the Big Ten’s revenue while losing 2 schools.

      • wyzerman says:

        If I were Texas, I’d stay at ten teams. Why feed two more mouths? You won’t find two that will add much value.

        Instead of a CCG I would schedule the annual OU game the first week of December every year.

        I bet this format could command as much as a CCG because you would likely have two highly ranked teams (easy conference, don’t schedule too many tough OOCs) playing for a BCS bowl every year.

        It might work short-term, and then BevoTV would be up & running

        • wyzerman says:

          The problem I see with this working out is that although Texas could say “We won’t do the PAC Ten. If you don’t like this go elsewhere.” and in effect buy programming content as long as the paid the ISUs, Baylors, Techs, Missouris, more than they might make in the BE or MWC, how do they satisfy OU and A&M? They need to get a cut which is at least in the same ball park as what they might get if they moved.

          It makes me think of the Harlem Globetrotters and a bunch of Washington Generals

      • Bamatab says:

        Ross, I’m with you. How could a tv network think that the Big 12-lite has any stability whatsoever. After these latest series of event, the perceived animosity (even if it isn’t 100% accurate) is now at the forefront. The blood is now in the water and the sharks are circling. If the ACC only got somewhere around $12m-$13m (and that was with Fox trying competing with ABC/ESPN and jacking up the price), how can a 10 team conference with blood in the water going to rival the SEC’s contract. Doesn’t make sense to me.

      • PensfaninLAexile says:

        If necessary, B12 will add BYU and one of: Memphis, New Mexico, Tulane, Colorado State (probably not a Texas school — what’s the point). Each of those schools will eat any deal just to get in a BCS conference.

    • Josh says:

      I actually hope this is true, but one thing I’ve learned throughout this ordeal is: Never believe anything that comes out of Kansas City. Seems like all the bogus rumors have come from there.

    • Dcphx says:

      This will be Texas’ I’ve looked into the Abyss and the Abyss looked into me, moment. Texas confirming B12 continuation wouldn’t surprise me in the least.

  40. Bamatab says:

    It looks like according to the Aggies Rivals site, that they did turn down the Pac 10.

    • Ross Hatton says:

      Interesting. If this is true, then it looks like we get another week of wondering what will happen.

    • djinndjinn says:

      That’s one apparently out. Now let’s see what happens with Oklahoma. If they go SEC, I think Texas is back in play.

      • Just Joe says:

        I’m getting the impression from what I’m seeing in the media that journalists/outlets with a vested stake in helping UT are the only ones insinuating that A&M has *not* yet turned down the Pac-10 invite, which obviously has to make the deal less attractive for Texas and the conference. If this is a fact, then it’s a signal to the Big Ten that they can still offer the most attractive money deal to UT.

        • Midwest Aggie says:

          Chip Brown works for the Rivals site catering to the Horn fans. He was the one who broke the story and has had to eat crow since then.

          Texas chooses its path on Tuesday. Texas A&M chooses its path either on Thursday or Friday.

    • Midwest Aggie says:

      The source was Chip Brown at, and he has since recanted his story. A&M still has two options on the table to evaluate.

  41. Bullet says:

    As for the conspiracy theory, you could argue SEC, P10, B10 and ACC are working together to create 4 superconferences with complicity by UT and A&M. SEC supposedly is not raiding ACC. I posted earlier that I didn’t think the superconferences happen because the only way it worked financially was UT to Pac 10 and A&M to SEC. SEC can’t get to 16 without solid foothold in Texas and P10 can’t get to 16 without solid foothold in Texas.

    • StvInILL says:

      I don’t believe such a grand plan is at work here. these conferences are all in competition. Squeezing out the weaker links is a natural part of this competition. The death of a conference below the big three is going to benefit the big three in any case. That said look at where the four fits line up. Cultural fit, geographic fit, athletic fit and monetary fit add up.

      • Just Joe says:

        I also agree that any and all conspiracy theories are garbage. Look at the Big 12 – you can’t get 12 institutions to cooperate, and you think over 60 want to play their respective roles in cooperatively creating a few mega conferences? No way.

        To be clear, this doesn’t mean that mega conferences won’t come to fruition at some point (maybe even soon), but it will be more the result of a cold war/arms race mentality than one of collaboration.

      • Bullet says:

        Of course, I agree with you. Its just amazing what conspiracies everyone thinks UT is up to. A&M and the SEC are standing up to B10/P10/UT world dominance!

        The simplest explanation is often the best. UT thinks B12 is in its best interest. Likes B10 but can’t do it politically and worries about being on an island w/o rivals. P10+6 gives it closing thing to B12 but with competitive income.

        Texas/OU/A&M all have difficult decisions. P10 and B12 TV money are very uncertain. Non-financial impact of SEC membership is very uncertain.

  42. M says:

    I think we may have lost a lot of the Texas people over the last few days, but I have a question for them. Why would A&M not like the Pac plan but put up with the exhumed corpse of the Big 12 plan? Are the Aggies supposed to be more excited about playing ISU, KU, KSU, Baylor and Missouri compared to ASU, Arizona, and Colorado with 1 game a year on the west coast? Do Aggies disintegrate if they touch Californian soil?

    I guess I could see the line of reasoning leading to going to the SEC but I don’t see much distinction between the Big 12 and Pac plans.

    • Wes Haggard says:

      Aggies will not stay in the Big Twelve, probably at all, but for sure not if Texas brings up the specter of their Lone Star Network. Ditto for OU. Write it down, Big 12 is dead. And, consider the source of the prolong the Big 12, ultimately, is it not Chip Brown?

      • M says:

        Surely you’re not besmirching the quality of Chip Brown’s tweets? After all, he was right about Missouri going to the Big Ten… er, Nebraska not having a Big Ten invite… er, Texas A&M going to the Pac-10…

        Seriously, I just want Texas to be in or out so I can stop getting him on my feed.

    • Bamatab says:

      M, I’m with you. The only real difference between a Pac 16 schedule and a Big 12-lite schedule is that in the Pac 16 they may would have to play a couple of games (probably 2 max) on the west coast a year. I think that they whole “we wouldn’t be looking to the SEC if the Big 12-lite was still an option” was just spin to deflect some pressure off of themselves. I think if they have indeed said no to the Pac 16, then they will be announcing for the SEC this week. JMHO

      • Just Joe says:

        M, I’m only speculating obviously, but I bet Pac-10 vs. SEC *or* Big 12 for A&M is fear of the unknown vs. the comfort of familiar surroundings.

        Culturally, the Big 12 and SEC suit A&M very well – fans and administrators alike. They know the SEC is a cash cow and even though B12 may not yield a fortune, it lets them be a relatively big fish (2nd only to UT and OU, right?) – Pac-10 opens a whole other can of worms – nothing is set in stone when it comes to scheduling or a tv deal (I assume). My hunch is that A&M decision makers are conservative old men who don’t like taking risks…which makes the SEC or the possible continuation of the Big 12 the most attractive prospects.

    • Hangtime79 says:

      M right now in Aggie land its running probably 12 – 1 to head for the SEC. Lots of folks excited and especially with being able to throw a grenade Austin’s way out the door (see Nebraska). Beebe saying he can get a deal like SEC is ludicrious especially given with additions to SEC, the number should go up per school.

      The only way Aggies stick around is if their is some SERIOUS contractual/pre-nup for Texas + no BevoTV and equal pay for everyone. Conference is kinda of tired of the Austin wandering eye and for the Aggies and B12N4 to stick around they will need some significant assurances ie cash and huge break-up fees to want to stick around.

      I posted the other day. 1985, 1989, 1994, and now in 2010 Texas has had “urges” to leave its brethern and go west. I think Aggie land is more then happy to let them go this time.

      • Bullet says:

        Aggie fans think like above and have a chip on their shoulder about Texas, but I think Byrne and Loftin will make rational decisions. If they choose SEC it will be because of travel and money issues. I really don’t see them leaving B12 w/o everyone else going.

        If they do try to leave the B12 on their own, there might be some political pressure. I don’t forsee anyone putting political pressure to go to P10 over SEC.

        • AggieFrank says:

          On their own? CU and NU have left already. The only “pressure” is coming from Deloss Dodds via his mouthpiece.

          The B12-2 is dead and it was shot by Texas.

  43. crpodhaj says:

    So, does the following look like what we have witnessed over the past few weeks / months:

    1) Texas in talks with the Big10 (and others) about conference expansion.

    2)The Pac10 comes up with a way for Texas to keep its’ rivalries and maintain an almost automatic BCS bid with the Pac8-Swac8. They offer it as quickly as possible – it’s their best option. This forces the Big10′s hand.

    3) The Pac10 offers and receives Colorado. The Big10 encourages Nebraska to apply and accepts the application. No reason to wait.

    4) Lots of negotiations on all sides very quickly: options, back-room trading, promising away your first-born, yadda, yadda, yadda.

    5) A&M completely balks at the Pac8-Swac8 and makes a strong move toward the SEC.

    6) Desperate to keep A&M out of the SEC, Texas rejuvinates the Big12′s future. The Pac8-Swac8 idea (and all others) in trouble.

    7) A&M now faces the prospect of attempting to join the SEC in the face of the other Texas schools “struggling” to stay together. Politics may come into play to force the hand.

    8) The Pac10 tries to firm up as many commitments as possible or forever lose out.

    9) The Big10, along with the SEC, still with the biggest hands to play, sit on the side and wait, with a number of situations that can turn into positives for them. (Why is it that I think these two schools look at each other as foes like in the scene from “Patton,” where Gen. Patton and the Russian general cross arms and drink champaign while smiling and looking daggers at each other?)

    Is that it or did I miss something?

    • Can't Get Enough says:

      What about ND?

    • crpodhaj says:

      Ooops. These two conferences in #9, not schools.

    • PensfaninLAexile says:

      Texas: The elephant sits where it wants.

    • crpodhaj says:

      Well, on A&M’s board, they are celebrating their enterence to the SEC. That part could be over.

      • Kyle says:

        I say this not because I doubt you, but merely as a Pitt fan who remembers some of his friends “celebrating our invitation to the Big Ten” back in February.

      • twk says:

        I don’t think you’re going to see any annoucement for several days. First, the A&M regents are not yet scheduled to meet, and any meeting agenda must be posted 72 hours before the meeting. Second, there will be a hearing in Austin on Wednesday before a committee of the Legislature, and I don’t think A&M wants to announce anything prior to that. Finally, I think A&M and the SEC have an understanding, and that there really isn’t any time pressure on their announcement if OU is out of play.

        Now, if Texas wants to try to use a Big XII survival plan with a poison pill (the Longhorn network) as part of a PR offensive against A&M, I think A&M will just play it cool and tell eveyrone what they’ve been saying–they are evaluating all options. Make no mistake–the Horns are very conscious of the fact that they are losing the PR battle, and it could get a lot worse if they don’t put up some kind of smokescreen to try to redirect the blame to A&M.

  44. M says:

    Andy Staples talks about the Texas politicians getting involved. They have a hearing Wednesday. Since most of the various trustee/regent meetings are Tuesday, I don’t really know what he plans to accomplish.

  45. Hoffa says:

    Who wants K-State?

    • duffman says:

      wow that video was disturbing..

      they stole the power towel from the steelers terrible towel

      they stole the welcome to the jungle from the bengals

      The NFL AFC North attorneys are comming

    • Scott C says:

      I will never forget my power towel ever again.

  46. Just Joe says:

    Can anyone with a good base of non-BCS/football conference knowledge comment or speculate on a suitable home for Notre Dame’s non-revenue sports? Does one exist? ACC?

    I completely and totally agree with Frank that this is critical for ND’s overall athletic stability, but I don’t see the Big Ten actually taking a school it doesn’t want (i.e. Rutgers) solely to force ND’s hand – that’s the bad start of a relationship and one that would always be prone to collapse.

    I also don’t see Notre Dame joining the Big Ten if it’s obvious to everyone watching that Delany made a move solely to trap the Domers; they don’t want to be portrayed as the ones who got jobbed. On the other hand, they’d probably be inclined to join if it looks like a set of random but connected events transpired that resulted in B10 membership looking appealing rather than forced upon them.

    If I were Swarbrick/ND, I would put the challenge on the alumni who so obviously cherish football independence. Joining the Big Ten is worth X million dollars…can the boosters raise this much annually? If not, off to Big Ten country we go…

    • StvInILL says:

      Dude, be for real. if ND does not want to join the Big Ten because they want to be independent why would any other conference make sense. Only a very week conference would make sense. Like the Big East. They allow ND to two time them and learned to like it. The most logical place for ND to end up IS the Big ten. They can try the big 12 or what’s left of them? The SEC, too academically inferior and too southern. The Pac ten, too far to travel and they are all filled up. The ACC would want full membership and no duel TV networks most likely.

      • Just Joe says:

        Stv, on paper it’s already been established in about 37 different ways that joining the Big Ten makes very logical sense for Notre Dame, yet they relent…it’s clear their pride and independence are hallmark to them, and they will cut off their nose to spite their face. I genuinely believe that if the Big Ten makes very deliberate moves to force ND to join the league, the Domers would seriously consider a move to the ACC – which is filled with schools that share ND’s private/highly selective/undergrad emphasis (Duke, Wake, BC, Miami), and would probably be willing to make concessions for them, i.e. a bigger cut of the tv contract.

        • StvInILL says:

          Makeing consessions to the domers will only signify that the ACC believes they are a week confrence. I just poit out that any excuse ND makes for not joining the BT can be applied to other confrences. Consistance and sense would make sense.

    • Bullet says:

      There is no place. Everything I previously read (prior to Frank’s piece) was that the Catholic schools were ND’s biggest supporters in BE. Yet I can’t imagine them wanting ND’s football revenues used to swamp their non-rev sports, just as Division III kicked out Division I schools like Dayton playing non-scholarship football. They didn’t want Div I (basketball in Dayton’s case) revenues funding facilities that they couldn’t match.

      Missouri Valley is strong, but I don’t see them wanting ND either.

      Atlantic 10 really doesn’t fit ND. They tend to have commuter schools and small schools or schools that will end up with Big East bb schools.

      No other non-football league is good enough in basketball.

  47. PensfaninLAexile says:

    I think the conferences will live to regret 16. It’s pure megalomania — a commodity in ample supply at CAA.

    If the PAC-10 gets the B12S …..

    As I understand it, the schools entered into this understanding there will be two divisions, so that no one has to haul themselves up to Pullman every other day. For football, what do you have? If they schedule only 8 games, then what? 7 in division with one dedicated rival or 7 with a rotation? So Arizona only sees USC once every eight years? If you go to 9 conf games, then you go through the opposite division once every 4 years?

    It won’t take more than a couple of years (if that) for Ariz and ASU to realize they’ve been kicked out of the PAC and into a new SWC. How’s the marriage going to be then?

    This won’t be a true conference — might as well have made some type of media alliance or joint cable network. The schools of Texas could be right back where they started: in a jerry-rigged conference with a lot of squabbling. They’ll be rid of Baylor, though so I guess that’s something.

    I think the same thing could happen to the B10. As soon as I seen a “pod” post, I skip it. But from the number, it is clear that patching together a 16-team conference and maintaining rivalries and cohesiveness will be a tall order. The BEast can barely do it as a 16-team Bball conference (and that’s with more than twice the inventory of games).

    The only saving grace would be if the teams drop one of the rent-a-patsy games and go to a 9-game conference schedule. But, the voraciousness of the athletic department’s financial needs makes me think that unlikely.

    That said, if the B10 is determined to go to 16 and learn the hard way and given what FTT said about the BEast and ND, add the three AAU members: Pitt, Rutgers, Syracuse. Lock down the mid Atlantic completely, get a combination of demographics, strong brands, some good Bball (not Rutgers), and grab ND. ND’s ego needs to be stroked — hence its reticence to join as part of a group. But, joining with the academic cream of the BEast crop helps satisfy that problem.

    I mentioned this on the last entry.

    Hate the idea — these 16-team conferences are going to have a lot of problems. The WAC was a warning — it is foolish to be so arrogant as to think that their problems don’t apply b/c they are the WAC. 16 is just too much.

    99% of the world just has to learn the hard way, even brilliant B10 presidents.

    • Chelsea J. Rockwood says:

      I’ve been trying to figure out why U of A and ASU would go along with this P16 plan. I suppose the PAC10 office could have incriminating photos of one of the Arizona university presidents, but two?

      • Just Joe says:

        I think ASU/UofA saw they had no choice in the matter. What were their alternatives? Vote it down and possibly cost every school in the Pac-10 a few million?

        Agree that the 16-school model remains unproven and could be a recipe for disaster. Seems to me the original talk of a Big 12/Pac-10 cooperative tv deal could still be lucrative and still scalable from an organizational standpoint – let the two conferences co-exist, they negotiate their tv deals jointly for a bigger payday, and maybe agree that each school must schedule at least one opponent from the other league…

        • PensfaninLAexile says:

          Colorado goes to PAC, Utah is added. B12 replaces Colorado with Memphis.

          Now you have two 12-team conferences with great football and Bball teams — a lot of programming and good games.

          I don’t know what’s up with Arizona and ASU — they can veto. Stanford can’t be too thrilled. Maybe they are swooning over some ridiculous dollar figure dreamed up at CAA. Perhaps Larry Scott did a real sell job, grabbed the blank check and is running with it. Maybe they have had second thoughts but are too embarrassed to pause things (or tried to derail things, but were shouted down).

          They will find out quickly putting together a new cable channel is tough. And, I gotta believe the schedule ramifications are going to start sinking in.

          • Kyle says:

            I have to imagine FOX would be doing most of the leg work and they’ve already worked out the kinks in the process when they developed the Big Ten Network. There will be local nuances, of course,but they have the how-to guide in hand.

    • Bullet says:

      Remember, Stoops is at Arizona. Arizona schools would like to recruit Texas more. And money talks.

      Maybe the big winner in conference realignment sweepstakes is San Diego State. A lot of schools will want to play them 1 and 1 out of conference.

      Agree that 16 is difficult. B10 is trying to come up with cohesive group. P10 is trying to build 2 cohesive groups. I actually think P10 has better model, because 16 is really two conferences tied by TV contract and championship game. Benson (WAC commissioner) commented that it was hard to get 10-12 schools to agree, let alone 16. If you have two cohesive divisions of 8, its easier than putting together 1 of 16. Slive, Beebe and ACC commissioner all think 12 is best. I’m inclined to agree.

      As for brilliant Presidents, most American business succeeds in spite of its CEOs, not because of them. Egos get in the way.

  48. John says:

    Do you guys really think Paul Tagliabue signed up to work with the Big East to preside over its destruction?

    • ruman says:

      He is a Georgetown alum that is doing this for free. Can make chicken salad out of – you know

      • michaelC says:

        He is on the Georgetown board. Whatever happens you can bet the interests of the BB side of the BE (and so Georgetown) will be optimized. Don’t be misled by the NFL history into thinking he is concerned primarily about BE football.

  49. ruman says:

    Well, looks like the FTT board obsession with Texas is coming to an end, and we are going to get down to the business that this has always been about if Delaney wants end, sticking an A-bomb in the midst of the Big East.

    I expect the final talley will be Rutgers, Syracuse, Maryland (who will see the ACC get raided) and ND

    • StvInILL says:

      I bet they go Rutger and maryland to get NY/NJ ,Baltimore, and DC. Or Rutgers Syracuse would be a hedge to nail down NY state. ND should move ahead of this and stop the BullS&*t already.

  50. Big Ten Jeff says:

    I want to say this in the most fair and objective way possible. ND, I hear you. It is your ‘identity’ to be small, private, Catholic and independent. The Big Ten is (save NU) large, public, secular and communal. What defines you and makes you exceptional is feared would be lost with an affiliation with us (although Holtz and Davie seem to have come around). Fine. I’d like to respect that.

    It’s not the Big Ten’s job, and doesn’t serve us well, to coerce, force, beg or compel ND or anyone else to join us. We are the premiere composite research, academic and athletic grouping of American Universities. The most we should be doing is letting it be known that despite our not fitting you (and you not fitting us), we believe the times have changed, and under the new landscape, we’d both be better off together. We shouldn’t be begging or forcing you or anyone else, because, by the way we’re already the richest, smartest and most successful suitor on the block, and we’ll do fine without you (and likewise, you’ve historically been “The University of Football in America”, and you’ve done well without us, although per Andrew McKenna in 1999, “Notre Dame over the years has enjoyed close associations with a number of Big Ten and CIC institutions both in athletic and in academic pursuits”). Please don’t think we’re destabilizing other conferences just to get you; if we were gonna take bad apples, we’d have accepted a Tech problem for an even bigger fish. If and when we invite MD, GT, Rutgers or whomever, it’s because we want them, not because it’s a ploy to force you to join unwillingly. If the dominos fall against your favor, it’s not a plot. If, in the future, we don’t reflexly support your request for exceptionalism (e.g. automatic BCS births), it’s not revenge; it’s acting in our own self-interest, much as you’re doing.

    Any good relationship starts with respect. I appreciate the clarity expressed here by the ND alumni about their identity; personally, I respect that and am not a ND hater, although objectively I do believe you’re acting entitled and against your self-interest. It’s just some of our passion is in seeing the clarity of how good we’d be together, even though you don’t want to admit the same. I do get concerned, insulted and turned off when I hear you saying how horrible an affiliation with us would be (and not just because of your goal for independence).

    I wish we’d stop with the pursuit of ND, and let ND approach us if and when ready, much like Tom Osborne said Nebraska did; we’ll then decide if our interest is still there. Let’s get back to work without disparaging these guys. ND will find its way, one way or another. We have too much to do on our own.

    And, by the way, thanks for being true to yourselves, because the last thing any of us wants is for you to join unwillingly, without the class and humility that a great institutional like UNL showed on Friday. If we ever affiliate, my arms will be open and welcoming. Please don’t ever join unless you can do the same.

    With respect.

    • Kyle says:

      Well put Jeff.

    • M says:

      Completely agree, but would like to add that Rudy was a horrible movie.

    • ruman says:

      Intergity in college sports? are you kidding?
      BTW – there is no santa

      • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

        that’s so not true. Santan brought be this for Christmas when I was a kid:

        • duffman says:


          I know who satan is….

          I know who santa is….

          I do not know this Santan of whom you speak?

          can you enlighten me????

          Is SanTan a minor deity that brings plastic toys to children with good suntans?

          • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

            he may be the Santa for Satan worshipers.

            He brought cool toys though.

    • Faitfhful5k says:

      Very well put Jeff. I wish I could express myself as well as you. And yet I try…

      I would like to point out we are in a rapidly changing world. Higher learning is no longer confined to small audiences behind ivy-covered walls. In my mind, the CIC, with the largest shared academic library in the country, is just one example of the direction universities in this country must follow to remain competitive. I am hoping this Big Ten expansion, in part fueled by the athletic partnerships of the Big Ten Network, can lead to even more initiatives for academic cooperation and excellence.

      I direct you to the post I made as the very last comment on Frank’s previous blog entry for my further thoughts…

      • Big Ten Jeff says:

        Well done. You should post that on the new thread. Glad to see we share the vision of the university’s athletics as a vehicle for academic/research instead of the other way around. I know the Big Ten does as well.

      • Faitfhful5k says:

        Thanks Jeff. If I had to type all that again, no way. So here goes cut and paste…

        When expansion talk started I started thinking of options just like any fan. I thought about which schools would look great on the football schedule. Thanks to Frank’s urging to “Think like a University president”, I have taken a much different view. Some of my changed attitude is certainly reinforced by the Wisconsin state motto, “Forward”. The long-term view of the role of universities has shaped my view more and more as these discussions proceed. Where would you like to see our universities go in the next 50-100 years?

        This country has largely thrived because of the tremendous resources we have but that advantage is slipping as we look to a challenging future. Another great strength of this country comes from the higher education systems we have in place. Collectively the education, research, and innovation provided by our great universities have played a tremendous role in making this country strong. Take a look at the Academic Rankings of World Universities. Seventeen of the the top twenty institutions in the world are in the US. Thirty-six of the top 50 are from the US.

        During the past generation our graduate schools have been flooded by international students. With lessons learned these students have gone home and built their own higher education programs. Can we maintain our position in a global economy?

        I wonder if we can. I recently stumbled on another university ranking solely based on web traffic algorithms.

        I have no way of judging the validity of this analysis. But it must be acknowledged the exchange and advancement of knowledge in a web-connected world will be a tremendously important factor for our future. By these rankings the US still is strong. Nine US institutions are in the top twenty. Eighteen US institutions appear in the top 50. But look at the makeup of the rest of that list. China has 5 in the top 20 on this listing. China doesn’t have a single institution in the top 200 on the ARWU listings. And that may be true for a long time to come. China is not exactly known for sharing its knowledge with the world. They may gladly keep it to themselves while we continue to be complacent.

        The addition of Nebraska to the Big Ten has been met by nearly universal acceptance in these parts. The few naysayers I have heard say they are a bad fit usually say “Nebraska is not Midwest. Nebraska is the Plains!” These same people may still think Penn St. is a poor fit because they are “too Eastern”. Say what??? It is a pretty weak argument if you have to pull out a new map for your Lincoln road trip when such an alliance may strengthen all universities involved.

        This same provincialism enters into so many of these arguments. Knute Rockne did try to get Notre Dame into the Big Ten, and yes I know they were rebuffed, and yes, anti-Catholic prejudices were probably a factor. Notre Dame has had success for generations and developed traditions and takes pride in its independence. I understand all of those arguments. But what if the university leadership of both Notre Dame and the Big Ten determine it is in the best interests of all to unite for the future. Look Forward. Not back. I would certainly hope resentments and differences that arose from a very different time could be set aside. The people who set Notre Dame and the Big Ten on separate paths have been dead for a long time!

        And please, please, please… do not even start to tell me some universities are a poor fit largely based on dividing lines established 150 years ago. Forward! Look forward. There is much more than football at stake.

        Yes. I am hopelessly naive. I can’t help it. :)

        • duffman says:


          according to the list rice is # 123


          I am most concerned long term if the US drops in educational rankings MUCH more than I worry / care if football fortunes rise or fall. In the end sports are entertainment, while the mind is what drives great civilizations forward.

    • aps says:

      Well said.

      The Big Ten should move on, period. There are other institutions that would want to align with the Big Ten that would be beneficial to all parties.

      Based on the Big Ten report by the consultant firm in Chicago, the Big Ten could add 5 schools and still make money. Lets get the best schools that fit academically/financially for the long term and move on.

      Let ND be ND and if they come back at a later date then evaluate it to see if it is in our best interest.

    • mnfanstc says:

      BigTenJeff… very well stated…

      Adding an analogy…

      The BigTen is a bunch of Jaguar XJ-12′s–big, powerful, exotic. Notre Dame is a Porsche –small, powerful, exotic. Can you keep them in the same garage, sure, you could… but, it just doesn’t seem right, look right, or most importantly, feel right…

    • Josh says:


      The worst thing we could do is “coerce” ND into joining. Then we’d have one member of the conference that resents everyone else.

      I’ve never wanted Notre Dame in the Big Ten for the same reason the posters on this board say–they aren’t an institutional “fit.” I get the sense this offends some of them when we say it but not when they say it, but maybe I’m wrong. In any case, it’s just more evidence that they’re not a fit.

      I think some of the problem is a belief that the ND administration would like the join the Big Ten but can’t because of the alumni backlash. In that case, the Big Ten and ND are conspiring to do something that would force the alumni to believe that the move is necessary. I think some Big Ten posters believe it and some ND posters fear it is true. But I don’t think there is any way this is happening. If the ND administration secretly wanted to join the B10 (and I don’t have any reason to think they do), I believe that they are honorable enough not to try something like that. On top of that, I believe the Big Ten wouldn’t want them if they were willing to collude like that.

      I think the Big Ten would like ND, even if I don’t. But I’ve never believed that the B10 would compromise their principles to make it happen.

    • ChicagoRed says:

      “The Big Ten is (save NU) large, public, secular and communal.”


      • M says:

        ““The Big Ten is (save NU) large, public, secular and communal.”


        NU=Northwestern of course. At least on this blog with its 50% Northwestern contingent you’re going to have get used to that.

    • Kyle2MSU says:


  51. Todd says:


  52. Bamatab says:

    Redhawk or any other OU fans on here, what are the OU fans saying about the appearance that OU has decided to follow UT to the Pac 10? Do most of the fans support this move, or would they prefer go to the SEC?

    It just seems to me that, even if they decide to go to the Pac 10, OU is in a perfect position to make UT sweat and gain some negotiating leverage when that happens. I figured that OU would at least make a public appearance that they weren’t tied to UT’s hip. What do the OU fans think about it?

    • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

      OU fans don’t seem happy with the move to the Pac-10 on it’s own merits. However, being looked at as Texas’s bitch, really is not going over well at all and is rubbing many the wrong way.

      We have a long history with Kansas and Missouri and have attachment to them.

      Of the OU fans, their it seems no one likes any of the choices right now for OU and seems to be a discussion of trying to figure out the less of 3 bad choices. All 3 have pluses and minuses, and big ones at that so it depends on which issue is valued.

      Personally, I say to hell with UofTexas, grow a pair, and go join A&M in the SEC. We aren’t Arkansas. We can play with Bama and LSU

      • Bamatab says:

        Redhawk, I would feel the same way as you. OU is a storied program with a huge history and tradition. Plus, you’ve only been in a conference with UT since the inception of the Big 12. OU was an elite football school a long time before that. Like I said, I’m suprised that the powers that be at OU aren’t causing UT to twist in the wind a little bit even if they do plan to follow UT to the Pac 10.

        • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

          if OU doesn’t play along..Uof Texas can say “to heck with this” and go to the Big 10. (a choice for UT that has it’s pluses and minuses as well)

          That effectively kills one of the 2 options for OU (keeping the Big 12 alive) and probably kills or hurts the “Join the Pac-10″ option.

      • AggieFrank says:

        I just don’t see this as a realistic option for OU. Texas’ threat to end the RRS is not something OU can risk. The only way OU gets to the SEC is with Texas.

  53. Guido says:

    First of all, huge fingers crossed that P16 falls apart and end up merely P12.

    Having grown up in NYC and now living in B12 country for many years, the idea of any B12 school to Big East makes no sense to me. I can’t predict the future, but that is a pure speculation story that I can’t see ever coming to fruition. And Franks Blog today actually lends more to my feeling here, as the BE BB and Football seem likely to split and the Football side is not going to be in position to add teams. They will be orphaned.

    Can’t find a link, but clearly remember something About SEC fondness of WV. Them and A&M to SEC and Rutgers to B10 brings the BE breakup to reality and B10 isn’t forced to take someone it doesn’t want

    So finally, ND, what happens. Not saying it will, but thinking ND and Texas like to think of themselves as a class of 2, in the matter of football royalty. Apparently have talked, like playing by their own rules, see themselves as bigger than the sum of any group, you get the point. Most B12 schools are desperate for a BCS conference under any rules, and some just can’t quit Texas…. So, ND to Big 12 with Special rules as needed. Big TV deal as Beebe is promising. Done!

  54. DavidPSU says:

    The only times Notre Dame has a real chance to beat USC is when USC is on probation. Better make the most of it. Whose your coach this year?

    • DJ says:

      Spoken like someone whose sense of history only goes as far as his nose. The ND-USC rivalry goes in cycles. Before this current USC streak, ND had an 11-game streak.

    • cjb56 says:

      From the 1983 meeting, until the 2002 meeting, USC only beat ND three times in the 19 meetings.

      ND has not won since the Cheat Carroll Era really got rolling at USC.

      I’d put my money on ND taking command of the series soon, as long as it’s Brian Kelly vs. Lane Kiffin.

  55. OT says:

    The flight plan for corporate jet with tail number N228PK from Austin to Kansas City on Sunday night has been cancelled.

    The jet is owned by former Oregon AD Pat Kilkenny and is being used by Pac-10 officials (Larry Scott and Kevin Weiberg) for their trip to visit the Big 12 schools.

  56. Faitfhful5k says:

    As a side note it is nice to see NU and NU… UNL fans are ready to play nice.

    Oklahoma State and Oregon State have even more to sort out. They even share the same color scheme. The debate has started here.

    … and somebody is already doing their homework. Ohio State… better get the lawyers on the phone. Nebraska is with us now.

    per superpoke:

    The US Trademark online database lists “OSU” as being trademarked by the following:

    Oklahoma State for the following areas: Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, and western Iowa.

    Ohio State for the following areas: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and eastern Iowa.

    Oregon State didn’t show up in the database as having an OSU trademark.

    The following areas were not listed in either trademark: New Jersey, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, California, Arizona, Alaska, Hawaii. I would assume most of that would be considered Oregon State’s area if they were listed.

    • m (Ag) says:

      If A&M somehow does take the Pac 10 offer, the first game of the Pac 16 should be A&M at Berkley; it’s the matchup everyone talks about, so get it out of the way first.

      But there are other matchups that should happen the first year, and OSU vs OSU is definitely on the list, as is USC vs UT.

      • Bullet says:

        I kind of like Oregon vs. OSU, two of the ugliest uniforms in college football. And in the B10 when UNL plays PSU they both will be wearing uniforms that look like they came from the 50s.

      • Ol'Army02 says:


        I think A&M at Cal would make for one Hell of a Corps Trip. Imagine a March-in at Berkely!

    • Josh says:

      Has Ohio State trademarked “tOSU”? Because that’s what they seem to insist on being called these days.

      I just abbreviate Ohio State as tOSU, Oklahoma State as OSU and don’t bother with Oregon State.

    • M says:

      I think Oregon State has tried to get out of the whole disagreement and just go with “OS”.

    • Practically probably doesn’t really matter. Ohio State doesn’t use OSU in much official at least anymore. They always write Ohio State or The Ohio State University.

      • Now the term Ohio has a bit more controversy. Ohio University and OSU were fighting that one out about a decade and a half ago after OU trademarked the word “Ohio” for collegiate purposes. In the past, OSU simply wrote Ohio on jersey’s without even bothering with the word state. I think OSU gave up most of the rights to OU, but it obviously keeps the right to the word Ohio in some contexts. I’ve always liked OSU’s emphasis on the Ohio part of the name rather than the word state, so I hope that doesn’t end.

    • Cliff's Notes says:

      So neither Ohio State nor Oklahoma State want New Jersey?

  57. M says:

    Throughout this process we’ve talked about “turning point” schools, whose decisions would affect the rest of the discussion. Missouri, Notre Dame, Nebraska and Texas have all been mentioned in this role.

    Texas A&M appears to be the newest of these schools. If they go to the Pac-10, the SEC will probably do nothing, the Big Ten will be at 12 without any obvious targets to go up, and the Pac-16 will be full. The focus turns to those left behind in the Big 12. If they somehow keep the Big 12 together, then the situation is at least temporarily stable in all areas.

    If A&M goes to the SEC, the SEC almost certainly will add another school. Assuming that Oklahoma goes with Texas, the SEC will likely go hard after some ACC schools (FSU, Clemson, VT?) and the musical chairs continue.

  58. Midwest Aggie says:


    [i]In taking all things in consideration, A&M’s leadership is intrigued by playing in the nation’s premier football conference, drawing big crowds to Kyle Field from SEC fan bases that tend to travel well, and a much bigger annual payout from the league, the insider said. The primary downside, of course, is breaking off of a nearly 100-year league affiliation with rival UT that features a nationally-showcased football game every Thanksgiving.

    The Aggies are prepared for a rough go early in the tough league, the insider said, but A&M hasn’t been challenging for Big 12 titles anyway. The rival Longhorns, likely headed west as part of a Pac-10 southeastern division, would have more to lose competing in a tougher league, considering they’re already competing for national titles.

    A&M, however, reiterated Sunday that is has not turned down the Pac-10 or any options on the table.[/i]

  59. Midwest Aggie says:

    “In taking all things in consideration, A&M’s leadership is intrigued by playing in the nation’s premier football conference, drawing big crowds to Kyle Field from SEC fan bases that tend to travel well, and a much bigger annual payout from the league, the insider said. The primary downside, of course, is breaking off of a nearly 100-year league affiliation with rival UT that features a nationally-showcased football game every Thanksgiving.

    The Aggies are prepared for a rough go early in the tough league, the insider said, but A&M hasn’t been challenging for Big 12 titles anyway. The rival Longhorns, likely headed west as part of a Pac-10 southeastern division, would have more to lose competing in a tougher league, considering they’re already competing for national titles.

    A&M, however, reiterated Sunday that is has not turned down the Pac-10 or any options on the table.”

  60. duffman says:

    ESPN News….

    LeBron likes Izzo!

    Izzo still gathering information.

    Can somebody slip Tom some info that makes Cleveland look bad MSU needs Tom way more that the good folks in Ohio.

  61. Scott C says:

    No surprise, but looks like there is a “buy-in” for BTN.

    On when Nebraska would receive the full financial benefits of being a Big Ten member:

    Perlman: “We will be full-fledged members of the Big Ten in 2011. That does not mean that we’ll be full financial partners at that point.”

    On if he knows when that time will be:

    Perlman: “I do, but the Big Ten wants that to be kept proprietary. There is a certain date we will be full financial partners as well in terms of their distributions. There is a transition period. They’ve always had the two principles in expansion, one was they weren’t going to dilute their own distributions to add a member and they don’t expect a member to take less than what they would’ve had in their prior conference. But everyone recognized it takes a while to build a financial base so that you could bring somebody else up to a full partnership in that sense.”

    • Faitfhful5k says:

      In actuality the Big Ten teams are still buying their way into the BTN. Profits are still going to Fox to repay start-up costs.

      According to BTN president Mark Silverman…
      “Once Fox recoups its investments in a few years, there will be additional profits that schools will get,” Silverman said.

    • Faitfhful5k says:

      We are all a bit in the dark as to the financial aspects of the BTN because it is a private company. At this time the schools only receive annual rights fees directly. These fees average $100M/year on an escalating schedule over the life of the deal.

      The initial equity stake, annual profits and remaining amount owed to Fox are all a bit unclear. So far the best information I have seen has come from the cable industry analysts at SNL Kagan.

      “If that isn’t enough, the Big Ten also has a profit-sharing agreement with the Big Ten Network. Kagan, a leading cable research and finance company, predicts over the next two years that the Big Ten Network will make $100 million in profit.”

      “The Big Ten also is an equity partner with the Big Ten Network, owning 51 percent of the company. Kagan values the BTN at $1 billion. And Kagan says the value of BTN in three years could be $2 billion.”

      • Pezlion says:

        There was an article a month or two ago that stated the Big Ten received $66 million from the BTN as its licensing fee and $62 million in profit distributions. No information has been disclosed about what has been payed to Fox, or if that $62 million distribution is before or after equity repayments to Fox.

  62. duffman says:

    From ESPN .. on Missouri..

    Rule #1 Protect Your Partners!

    Note: this is probably not accomplished by going to the competition and not getting anything in writing before they take one of your original partners. Just saying!

  63. GreatLakeState says:

    I’ll tell ya what. If PITT will go back to their ‘Dorsett/Marino’ era helmet with the cursive ‘Pitt’ they can join.

    • Kyle says:

      There is a large portion of the Pitt fanbase that would absolutely love that arrangement. That decision to change the logo and colors was very contentious. The ’09 nike uniforms are definitely a step in the right direction, though.

      • PensfaninLAexile says:

        For chrissake! I hope you aren’t one of those ‘script’ logo squawkers.

        I can’t believe that virus has infected this blog.

        • Kyle says:

          Well I surely wouldn’t consider myself a squawker and I fully recognize that navy/vegas-gold is here to stay, but I wouldn’t be opposed to an occasional throwback game.

  64. duffman says:

    ESPN updated article..

    It looks like the 5 schools left could split a “hefty” payday fro collecting “exit” fees.. maybe this is how dan beebe got to the 17 million per team number? anybody care to speculate?

    • PensfaninLAexile says:

      duffman –

      Instead of an entirely new post, let me re-post (partly edited) from a few days ago:

      Here’s a puzzle for the lawyers out there:

      The schools leaving the B12 will have to forfeit about $10 million each in 2010 TV money. 7 teams – that’s $70 million that could be split among the 5 rump schools — $14 million.

      Now, it takes 9 votes to officially dissolve the B12, then the B12 will not be officially dissolved – only 8 votes are out there to do that. It occurs to me that the rump schools would not want to go to the MWC or CUSA – if they accepted invites to those conferences while the B12 is still in operation (until the end of the 2010-11 season), they might not be able to get the $20 million severance. Would that be the case?

      If they forfeit the cash by accepting an invite within the next year, I doubt they go. You better believe the bankrupt Colorado program would make every effort and look for every loophole to keep its $10 million.

      So, let’s say the B12 has to legally exist and the leftovers cannot accept invites for the next year. What do they do? The best move seems to be to invite teams from the MWC or CUSA to the B12 (or 8). The other possibility is a ‘reverse takeover’ by the MWC.

      In that scenario, the question becomes: do the departing teams still get to vote on conference matters? If they do, then they would probably vote against inviting new schools in order to force a dissolution. After all, the remaining schools need to get a conference schedule for 2011 (unless they want to do a bunch of home-and-home games). If the departing schools lose their voting rights upon accepting an invite, then the leftovers can invite whoever they want and get a $14 million severance check.

      If the leftovers can only get the $14 million each by keeping the B12 alive and are the only ones who get to decide on conference matters, then it seems likely that they will invite MWC/CUSA teams to come into the husk of the B12 – KU, KSU, BU, MU, and ISU would then stick together. That would be an attractive option for MWC and CUSA teams – prospective entrants might even get a little financial inducement. The B12 would survive (at least in name – or maybe it would revert to the B8).

      Additionally — as long as 5 teams have played in the same conference for (I think) at least 5 years, the conference keeps its BCS bid.

      • Bullet says:

        Read somewhere today, but don’t remember the link, that since league is Delaware corporation, it could simply be dissolved by majority vote. Assuming 6 do leave, I suspect it will dissolve by majority vote AFTER Nebraska leaves. Noone else is leaving before 2012.

        • Will (NU) says:

          Correct. B12 is a Delaware corp. Majority vote dissolves. Therefore, if NU, CU, UT, aTm, OU and OSU leave, there are still six members remaining and not a majority to dissolve. For those who’ve already withdrawn, the UT west-exodus is good to assure avoiding this penalty.

          However, if you listened to UNL Chancellor Harvey Perlman at the NU Board of Regents meeting, he basically said he believed the penalties would be inappropriate in these circumstances no matter what. For those who are not familiar with HP, he’s the former Dean of the College of Law at Nebraska and taught on the faculty at the University of Virginia. I don’t believe he is simply posturing; I think he would fight any penalty. And I think he might have a case. These were likely not the circumstances contemplated when crafting this liquidated damages clause.

          • PensfaninLAexile says:

            Here is the key issue:

            When do you lose your voting rights? Nebraska has accepted a B10 invite — but it will be playing for at least one more season in the B12 (same as Colorado). Have they lost their voting rights as of the date of acceptance?

          • Doug says:

            I don’t have the link, but I recently read that NCAA rules say that any conference that loses teams to the point where it no longer has a minimum of six teams that have played together for at least five years, that conference is automatically disbanded (which also nullifies any exit fees). This is why the Big 12 hasn’t made any moves. Added teams now can’t save them if they lose five more teams.

          • Will (NU) says:


            Nebraska is a member of B12 until July 1, 2011, when it officially joins the B10. Nebraska has only given its notice of intent to withdraw at that time. So until then it still has a vote to dissolve.


            I don’t see how that’s an issue. If there are six teams left, then the conference passes NCAA muster, and the six remaining teams can block a vote to dissolve. If there are only five teams, then the seven have enough for the majority to dissolve. NCAA rule is never a factor.

      • SuperD says:

        You guys realize that the Colorado AD operated in the black last year and A&M is way more in debt right? Of course you don’t…the “Colorado is broke” stuff has been overplayed because we didn’t can Hawkins. That said, I’m pretty damn sure every single one of the schools wanting to leave would prefer to find a way not to have to pay if it can be avoided, Texas included. 10 million is as they say “real money” even if you are Texas.

        • MIRuss says:


          I really thought there would be a lot more people posting on this which is what Frank’s post was pertaining to – that is, the sequence of events from this point moving forward.

          Question 1. “The dissolution must be a majority vote.” Is that a majority of members or “members in good standing who haven’t opted to leave the Big 12?”

          Question 2. Is the extra money an enticement to get A&M to stay in the Big 12 for one more year before leaving?

          Question 3. Looking at a logical sequence of events, if the SEC and A&M do get together, does that mean the SEC raids the ACC for one more and even things up? Then, does the ACC raid the BEast and does that start the ND ball rolling?

          It’s all about sequence of events and which events go off in what order, as Frank has suggested…

          We need a chart that shows how all the dominoes fall when it begins….

  65. cutter says:

    From the Chicago Tribune regarding Nebraska and the AAU membership–20100613,0,747184.story

    LINCOLN, Neb. — The passionate fan base, storied football program and geographic proximity to the rest of the conference — all these factors helped make Nebraska an attractive candidate for the Big Ten’s expansion plans.

    But Nebraska had one other criterion vital to Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany and the conference’s presidents and chancellors: membership in the AAU.

    No, not the Amateur Athletic Union, which is commonly associated with youth basketball, but rather the Association of American Universities.

    “All the Big Ten schools are AAU members,” Nebraska Chancellor Harvey Perlman said. “I doubt that our application would’ve been accepted had we not been a member of the organization.”

    So what is the AAU, and why is it so important to the Big Ten members?

    It’s a group of 63 elite research universities in the U.S. and Canada. Membership is through invitation only, and the group’s primary focus is evaluating and developing the top graduate programs, not necessarily undergrad programs, spokesman Barry Toiv said.

    “(Membership) is generally considered a sign that a research university has arrived as a top research university,” Toiv said.

    The AAU is basically a facilitator for collaboration among these universities, a venue where the top officials from member schools gather to exchange ideas and discuss the prevalent issues in education, something that’s critical to college presidents, Toiv said.

    Now that Nebraska will be joining the Big Ten, Perlman said that will make avenues of collaboration with the other Big Ten schools a little easier to travel.

    “The Big Ten for a long time has been known for being the only conference that has really had a strong academic component through the Committee on Institutional Cooperation,” Perlman said. “Right now, in research, in trying to solve the problems and challenges that face our country, it requires big research projects with our interdisciplinary teams with a lot of folks focusing from various perspectives on the issues.

    “The more institutions you can get together in a real collaborative way, the greater likelihood it is that you’ll put the right teams together.”

    Perlman added that Penn State’s seamless integration into the conference from a research perspective helped make his decision to switch conferences easy.

    Plus, AAU membership is crucial for recruiting elite faculty. It’s a marker of which schools are and aren’t important.

    The Big Ten is the only conference that can say all of its members belong to the AAU. It’s a valuable feather in the Big Ten’s cap.

    Most schools that have been mentioned as possible expansion candidates already belong to the AAU, including Missouri, Pittsburgh, Maryland, Syracuse and Rutgers. Missouri seems to be out of luck at the moment. Texas is an AAU member but according to multiple reports is deciding whether to join the Pac-10.

    Notre Dame and Connecticut are not AAU members but would like to be. So in the hubbub over who else might be invited to join the Big Ten, know that if a school has the black mark of “not being an AAU member,” it likely isn’t by choice.

    “It is perhaps the most elite organization in higher education,” Connecticut spokesman Michael Kirk said. “You’d probably be hard-pressed to find a major research university that didn’t want to be a member of the AAU.”

    In the case of Notre Dame, the school has a sterling reputation for its undergraduate education. But only in recent years under President John Jenkins has there been a significant push to become a leading research and graduate university. Notre Dame would love to be an AAU member to solidify its status.

    “As you know, membership in the AAU is by invitation only, and to date, we have not been invited,” Notre Dame spokesman Dennis Brown said. “We do hope, however, that the progress we are making as a research institution will lead to an invitation in the future.”

    Notre Dame’s lack of AAU membership didn’t stop the Big Ten from trying to grab it in 1999, and it probably won’t be a hurdle this time either, given all the other strengths Notre Dame brings to the table.

    As for the conference’s newest member, it’s excited to receive the revenue generated by the Big Ten Network and the chance to play in the Big Ten. But its chancellor can’t wait to sit down with other conference members and talk about research.

    “I’m sure they’ll have strengths that’ll fill gaps we have, and we may fill gaps that other institutions have,” Perlman said. “It’ll certainly elevate what we’re able to do, and that’s not just important to the institutions, it’s important to the country trying to solve problems.”

  66. Playoffs Now! says:

    Sources tell us that Big 12 schools thinking about Pac10 must wait until after Wed. legislative hearing. Pac10 issues Friday deadline. about 2 hours ago via web

  67. [...] on this have been @ChipBrownOB and @frankthetank111. The latter also has an interesting post on the Big East contracts, if you’ve forgotten that there are football teams on the East Coast, too. I . . . have [...]

  68. Rick says:

    From Scout “College Football News”. A full ranking analysis top to bottom of D1 Football schools Academic Progress (APR).

    • Rick says:

      Big Ten members, Big Ten expansion candidates, and other conference realignment notables and their rankings:

      1: Rutgers
      3: Rice
      4: Illinois
      4: Northwestern
      6: Duke
      7: Notre Dame
      7: Miami
      10: Ohio State
      10: Vandy
      13: Penn State
      20: Indiana
      22: Wisconsin
      22: TCU
      24: Boston College
      24: Clemson
      24: Georgia Tech
      29: Wake Forest
      33: Oklahoma
      34: Missouri
      35: North Carolina
      41: Kansas
      44: Pitt
      44: Nebraska
      49: UConn
      49: Utah
      53: Virginia
      53: Syracuse
      53: Texas
      59: Iowa
      59: Baylor
      59: Oklahoma State
      65: Texas Tech
      67: Houston
      69: Michigan State
      72: Virginia Tech
      72: BYU
      83: NC State
      84: Michigan
      87: Minnesota
      87: Kansas State
      87: Texas A&M
      97: Purdue
      100: Maryland
      104: Florida State
      107: Iowa State
      112: Colorado

    • omnicarrier says:

      Rick – Congrats to Rutgers. Will be interesting to see if Rutgers gets its first ever top spot from AFCA for Academic Achievement. Definitely will be on the list for the 7th time in 29 years.

      Looks like SU will miss the list for only the 3rd time in the last 14 years. We are currently 8th all-time in number of appearances on the AFCA Academic Achievement list with 18 appearances trailing ND, Duke, Virginia, BC, Rice, Vandy, and Penn State.

  69. duffman says:

    From an A&M site..

    If this is the A&M mainstream, they seem pretty pissed to be in the UT or TT shadow. wow.

    • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

      substitute “Oklahoma” for where he has “A&M” and you also have OU’s feeling on this as well, right now, though we are also seeing the Big 8 ties get cut as well, and thus the “keep the Big12 alive” option is also good for OU

      • Bamatab says:

        But why would OU (or UT for that matter) even consider trying to keep the Big 12 alive? The weaknesses of the conference have been brought to light and the blood is now in the water in regards to this conference. I just don’t see a tv network forking over anywhere near SEC type money (I don’t even see them getting ACC type money) because the conference is so unstable.

        Is there any type of organized effort by the OU fans and boosters to try and sway the powers that be to consider the SEC? If not, someone needs to get on that. :)

      • Wes Haggard says:

        Redhawk, Suppose that TX somehow convinces all the “left” schools to seriously reconsider keeping the Big 12
        intact. As an Ag, I know how we feel about the Lone Star Network. How does OU feel?

        • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

          same as the Ags, but not as much. OU has put on some games especially women’s and men’s basketball games on local cable in OKC and Tulsa.

          OU’s made a little, and would like to be able to keep putting those games out there. OU has also made a ton on 2 pay-per-view games the last 2 years.

          BUT, they fully realize the imbalance that UT has in that area. Also Bevo-TV comes with the usual Texas arrogance that doesn’t help matters.

          So…mixed feelings, I think would be a good way of putting it.

    • Bullet says:

      UT and OU worked hand in hand to create the B12. I suspect the administrations are working together on the P10 deal, not OU following in Texas shadow, even if the fans don’t like it. OU may have more of a belief in the viability of the B12-2.

      As far as A&M, there’s not another school in the country that has as big a chip on their shoulder about their rival. Unless you have seen it its hard to imagine. Thought I saw a UT fan the other day, until I realized it was an Aggie in UT burnt orange with a picture of a Longhorn with its horns cut off. They always call us tu with little letters. Its really quite bizzarre. If you think their comments are hostile towards UT, that’s just normal Aggie talk.

      • duffman says:

        what is a sip? sips came up several times?

        • Bullet says:

          Short for Teasip. UT because it has a T and is the city school are the Tea-sippers in Aggie speak. Aggies, being an agricultural school doesn’t sip tea (not that Ags are that high a % anymore).

      • Bamatab says:

        You obviously haven’t met an Auburn fan. Those guys can get down right psychotic when it comes to Bama.

        • duffman says:


          I raised this question about bama vs auburn, but did not get an answer.

          Is it true or myth that in the past, the loser of the iron bowl had to submit a formal apology to the governor / state / student body? is this true?!

      • Midwest Aggie says:

        Right. Darn those Aggies because they have an inferiority complex to “The University”.

        Truth be told, the road goes both ways. Yes, the Aggies can go overboard with that chip-on-their-shoulder attitude. Texas fans on the other hand have a superiority complex that just rubs EVERYONE the wrong way – minus Texas Tech right now as they are being very grateful for a place at the dinner table.

        When Texas hired Mack Brown to be the coach, the summer before his first season, he hit the road to drum up support in the various local alumni groups throughout the state. He would ask one question that would raise the roof at the time — A&M was on a long winning streak at the time — which team would you rather beat, A&M or OU? The crowds would erupt with, “BOTH!!!” The point being, is that Texas people can be just as impassioned (and can act just as dumb) as other fans.

        It is what makes the game a rivalry. Quarks and all.

        • Bullet says:

          A lot of Aggies got all bent out of shape about the bumper sticker “The University.” When that was popular, it had nothing whatsoever to do with the Aggies. It was about the board of regents changing the name of the school from “The University of Texas” to “The University of Texas at Austin” to make UTEP, UTSA, UT-Dallas, etc. happy.

      • m (Ag) says:

        Bullet–you haven’t traveled far if you’ve never seen a student wearing a joke t-shirt about another school.

  70. gozer says:

    I think, with considering Notre Dame, one has to understand there’s two distinct currents within the Board of Trustees and the ND community as a whole.

    One very much wishes to cast the university in the mold of the large research institutions and the elite private universities in this country. These are the “aspirational peers” that Fr. Malloy spoke of when he was president. The faculty makes up a large portion of this and the idea of Big Ten membership, with the corresponding CIC membership and the assist into the AAU all serves this direction.

    However, there is a very large contingent of the ND community that has deeply opposed these trends in the University. They’ve bristled at the idea of forcing acceptance criteria (which is not the same as the expectation of excellence on the part of those that are acceptance) to compete with the Stanford and Harvards of the world and that divorces itself from the Irish, working class background that the University arose out of. They’ve railed against the drift away from a Catholic view of higher education, which was symbolically reinforced with the honorary degree to, and commencement address by, President Obama. They’ve been forced to accept all these things, but the last truly unique expression of ND’s history and tradition–Football independence–is their Alamo.

    Two problems for Swarbrick and Fr. Jenkins- 1. That tendency makes up a very large percentage of the high dollar donors that make this athletic department run and allow them to have that large scope in non-revenue sports. 2. That viewpoint drives the Subway Alumni culture that makes Notre Dame different from Marquette, DePaul, St. Louis, Creighton, Loyola and the whole set of Midwestern Catholic colleges.

    If they make this move, regardless of the circumstances, they will lose most of those individuals, and all the money that surrounds them, for good. They will not be reconciled with an agreement with the institution that fought Rockne and Leahy and lead the boycott of ND football at the start of the last century. If they make this move, Swarbrick and Jenkins will never be able to make peace with them and ND will have done incredible violence to what makes the University like no other. No fencing program or other Olympic sport is worth that. If that means settling all non-football sports in a league with Marquette, DePaul, Dayton, Xavier, SLU, Creighton, etc., then that’s what it will have to take and it’s worth doing to avoid the bridge too far.

    • StvInILL says:

      That’s one of the dumbest arguments I have ever heard. Not that you are dumb for bring it up Gozer. I would be willing to bet that the university wins as much as it loses in terms of fan and financial support. I don’t know if there are really Irish catholic families living off potatoes and water just because they have to send a check to Notre Dame or that there are a lot of rich old alum doing the same. My point is the other Big ten universities have alum too and they give because they are the alum of one undergrad school. If you’re a Domer and ND joins the Big ten so then what do you do, send your money to Boston College??? This is a foolish argument not worthy of a graduate of a top 30 school. When ND starts winning they will come running to kiss the arse of the leprechaun I say. So they’ll get over it.

      • FLP_NDRox says:

        No, Domers’ll keep their money in their wallets, send their kids to CUA, Franciscan, or State, and start cleaning gutters on Saturdays. Not all of them, but many. ND doesn’t have many alums to begin with, and the ones it has knows the only thing the Admin understands from them is cash. I don’t know how smart it is to cheese off the people writing the checks and tuning in every home football Saturday.

        Don’t be so sure the alumni will come back. I didn’t go to a Big Ten school. If a Big Ten school calls me for money I think I can honestly say I do not know them.

    • mushroomgod says:

      blah blah blah blah blah

  71. GeronimoRumplestiltskin says:

    “This gives to teeth to the rumored pressure from the Big East on Notre Dame to make a decision on whether to join for all-sports.”

    Who, exactly, is the source of this rumor of pressure? On (a Northwestern message board), a poster with the handle of “PURPLE Book Cat” claimed that on this past Thursday, such an ultimatum was given to ND by the Big East, and claimed on Friday that ND knew “the Big East was untenable”. Other than here and that site, I have not heard/read anything about any such pressure/ultimatum.

    Source, please?

  72. PensfaninLAexile says:

    When this whole PAC-10 stuff started, I posited that it might founder on negotiating terms of entry, voting rights, conference governance and other ‘transactional friction.’

    Generally, I think bleacherreport stinks, but this link goes to an article that lists some of the problems that the B12S teams and the PAC-10 have to face. Some of these are pretty daunting.

  73. angryapple says:

    All this post did was reinforce my aversion to adding Notre Dame.

    Delany should not spend any more time trying to manipulate a snobby private school into doing something that it doesn’t want to do.

    If we absolutely need Notre Dame or Texas to get to 16 and start printing money, I’d rather move the Big Ten offices to Austin, play the conference championship in Dallas every year, redesign the Big Ten logo with a longhorn in the middle instead of an 11, and add Rice and Texas.

    • eapg says:

      Now you’re talking!


      DeLoss Dodds

      • zeek says:

        I agree with Bamatab 100% about why the schools would all take the deal.

        Being a part of the “Texas Ten Conference” is the only option for Iowa State/Kansas State/Baylor and even Kansas/Missouri at some level.

        They have to take any deal offered to them, no matter how lopsided the terms.

        Would you rather make $15M in the Texas Ten or $3M in the Big East? At a certain point, you have to please the alumni/students who would never accept the administration turning down such a deal, no matter how high the indignity of it all…

  74. IrishTexan says:

    I think you all have some great ideas, and I love the discussion… but there’s one scenario no one (at least, I don’t think) has considered:

    Notre Dame will join the ACC because “it’s a better institutional fit.” The Big Ten will expand and rest at 15 teams. Time will pass. And then the Big Ten will raid the ACC for Notre Dame. The end.

    I hope I blew some minds. Thank you, thank you.

  75. Hank says:

    Top 5 schools in the mix for the next phase of Big Ten expansion (fwiw)

  76. Ken Smithmier says:

    adding once again

    • duffman says:

      anybody notice Forbes writing more articles on college sports money?

      I guess in the future we will look for game results in the WSJ rather than our local sports section.

      • Hank says:

        its big business. and the BTN and whatever similar models develop are going to increasingly become a significant component of the sports business landscape.

      • Bullet says:

        I can’t get any game results west of the Mississippi in the Atlanta paper. I have to rely on the internet. Sometimes they don’t even include late eastern games.

        WSJ has had some interesting articles on sports. I remember one about 10-15 years ago talking about money games and what it meant for schools like Akron.

    • GreatLakeState says:

      This article explains exactly why I believe taking Texas-Tech would have been a small price to pay for gaining the goldmine that is the Southwest region.
      In fact, taking TT and Oklahoma would have been worth it.

      • Hank says:

        not sure.

        you would have to know what the realistic numbers are for the alternatives.

        also from the Big Ten perspective Tech adds nothing. it is entirley within the Texas footprint and would bring no additional households and likely little additional advertising revenue. so yes Texas is extremely valuable but is it worth more than any two other schools combined. If you look at Frank’s stab at putting a value on these numbers he has Texas at just over $100 mln, I believe Rutgers at $67 million and about 5 schools clusterd around $50 miilion. So Texas is worth a lot more than anyone else but Texas and Tech may be worth less than Rutgers and Maryland. Of course the actual Big Ten studies may show different numbers :)

        Oklahoma would probably be a better comparison but that is still a smal market.

      • mushroomgod says:

        I wouldn’t want 3 TX teams in the BT – that’s 2 too many…

  77. duffman says:

    Well it is about the AAU after all.–20100613,0,747184.story

    Kansas will you be expecting a call from delany?

  78. duffman says:

    for the IU folks on this board

    Fred Glass gets some ink.

    hey if football is bad , and basketball is down , at least it is nice to get in the news.

    • mushroomgod says:

      The IU Presient and AD have been completely silent in all the BT expansion discussions. I think that accurately reflects their repsective positions amoung their peers.

      • zeek says:

        Harsh, but probably true; and that article was somewhat sad, how in the world are their facilities in such bad shape.

  79. duffman says:


    the next Blog might be titled “Mr Toads Wild Ride”! as this week looks to be a roller coaster ride for the folks on here.

    For Big 10 readers here, tell Tom that Cleveland is just a sirens song and the folks here need and love him.


  80. HerbieHusker says:


  81. duffman says:

    Morning folks..

    What I am watching today….

    a) Big 12 “Survivor” after Nebraska and Colorado have been kicked off the island. Sorry for the analogy, but right now Missouri feels sorta like that Richard Hatch guy in doing what it takes to not get kicked off next, even after being the manipulator in the first place.

    b) Alan & Bama thanks for your input on SEC thoughts. If A&M finds a new home in the SEC you guys think FSU / Va Tech are next. After spending this weekend looking at Va Tech comments it looks like they are in a similar frame of mind as A&M.

    UT / A&M = Dr. Evil
    UVA / Va Tech = Mini Me

    c) If the Big 10 gets UT, but takes TT or OU to do it, has delany sold his soul to the devil (sorry with the ND folks like FLP, had to get religion in somehow) for the identity of the Big 10.

    d) Welcome to Big Red! I know we are still back on what happens next, but I am happy to have you in the family and want you feel welcome in your new home. Texas is getting much time and attention, so I just wanted to say we are thinking about you.

    *wonders how much legal work will get done this week based on the lawyers on this blog*

  82. Hank says:

    Chip Brown: According to sources, Texas will announce as early as today that UT will commit to a 10-member Big 12

    • zeek says:

      Count me as someone who would be elated to see that.

      • zeek says:

        Just looking at the value here, I think almost every school is best served by this except the Pac-10 (hence the Pac-16).

        The SEC doesn’t need to expand, and we don’t know whether they have a partner for A&M; in fact, the SEC is the one league that came into this expansion discussion needing no change.

        The ACC doesn’t want the Big Ten or SEC to contemplate going over 12 because it means they will be raided.

        The Big Ten finally has 12 with a strong addition, and we don’t see any candidates for 13-16 that want to join at this time or that necessarily make sense.

        The Big 12 seems to be best served since they’re the ones who bring the much stronger footprint to the Pac-16 (the 6 schools going anyways), and the Big 12 North obviously is better off staying put.

        The Pac-10 are the big losers if this doesn’t go through. We’ve discussed numerous times how the Pac-10 needs a deal to catch up to the Big Ten and SEC. The Big Ten will become much stronger with Nebraska and a CCG that looks to be almost as big as the SECCG due to the fact that the Big Ten isn’t too far off from the SEC in terms of intensity. The Pac-10 will grab Utah if this Pac-16 collapse is true, but a Pac-10 CCG looks to be about as popular as the ACCCG if USC isn’t there…

        • zeek says:

          Oh, forgot to add, Notre Dame should also be happy to see the Big Ten take 12 and for no other conference breach 12. That puts an end to any Notre Dame talk for the foreseeable future much more so than the past 20 years during which it was at 11 schools.

          • duffman says:


            my question?

            a) is texas posturing

            b) has Texas agreed to give everyone in a Big 12 Lite and equal share / say

            from all the conversations here, one of these is the answer, the problem is which one?

          • zeek says:

            I don’t think Texas is posturing.

            I think the Big 12 makes more sense anyways for Texas in terms of the fact that they bring the best footprint in the country outside of the East.

            They don’t need to give equal share.

            Say UT makes $17M, OU makes $17, A&M makes $17M, the other 7 can make $14-15M and they won’t complain at all.

            In fact that would double most of the other schools’ takes.

            I think Texas is only going to get more powerful without Colorado and Nebraska in the Big 12.

          • Bullet says:

            UNL and CU are definitely a loss to Texas and B12-2. A solid B12N is better for all. Lower profile for the league is not beneficial to anyone. I think they have to get back to 12 realtively quickly. Championship game probably pays for 1 school, so they have to get 2 schools who can generate 1/12 of revenue combined.

            Well, we’ll hear lots of rumours all day. Probably will know tomorrow whether the dominos really start falling or if it all stops until or if B10 moves again.

        • Stephen says:

          How are the Pac-10 losers if they add Colorado and Utah? They could still expand in the future.

          • wyzerman says:

            If the Big 12 added two its hard to see how that would increase share per team. What markets/brands could they add that had value? When in new entrant had to agree to being second class? Especially as they could approximate the TV value of the Big 12 CCG by moving UT-OU to the first week of November.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            If the Pac 10 stops expansion with just taking Colorado and Utah, they should rename to the conference the 12-Pack.

          • zeek says:

            Do those two teams pay off though necessarily?

            And what guarantee does the Pac-10 have that it will not have a CCG that will be like the ACC.

            If USC isn’t in the championship game, we’ll see how well it does…

          • duffman says:


            it has marketing tie in with Coors ready made….

            “Welcome to the 12 Pac, brought to you by Coors”

        • Rick says:

          Maryland, Virginia have not said anything about not wanting to go to Big Ten and what doesn’t make sense about Rutgers, Syracuse, Pitt, Missouri, or Kansas?

          • zeek says:

            How sure are we that those teams are all profitable up to 14.

            Even Nebraska isn’t going to completely pay off under the assumption that they’re entering the Big Ten and being scaled up so that everybody is made whole.

            My best guess is that Nebraska will bring in more than it brought to the Big 12, but the synergy won’t kick in till the Big Ten network starts to see it payoff in terms of increased viewership/subscribership, etc. in no uncertain terms.

            Can everyone be made whole if the other expansion candidates join?

            Rutgers/Maryland/Missouri possibly. Syracuse/Pitt seem unlikely though.

            You’d need Notre Dame to join with one of those two for sure in order for it to work.

          • ezdozen says:

            I proposed that the Big 10 offer Rutgers and Syracuse the opportunity to enter with 1/2 member shares initially, gradually increasing, and was told that this is not how the Big 10 operates.

            Under my scenario, they would only have to add $22M total to break even.

            Apparently, the Nebraska situation confirms that there IS a ramping up (even for Nebraska).

      • Husker Al says:

        Me too. Even if it’s not stable long term it slows down the process.

        But once Texas develops the LSN, joining a conference with an existing network becomes much more complicated.

    • NeutronSoup says:


      1. Best outcome for Big 10 if they can’t get Texas to join now.

      2. The spin is now “The Aggies can be seen as the final piece of the puzzle to holding the Big 12 together.”

      Wow… Chip’s sources at Texas really want to find someone else to blame for the (potential) breakup of the Big 12. I’m certainly not saying it’s Texas’s fault – it’s not. But they seem awfully interested in making sure everyone knows that.

    • Paul says:

      Now the two conferences just need to trade names and we can put this whole tawdry affair behind us!

    • wyzerman says:

      Scott never made it to Lawrence, either

      KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott filed a flight plan that would have put him in Kansas City on Sunday night, apparently to talk conference expansion with Kansas.

      But the private plane that carried Scott and deputy commissioner Kevin Weiberg to Oklahoma and Texas on Saturday and Sunday did not make its scheduled 9:48 p.m. CDT arrival at Kansas City International Airport.

      According to its flight plan, it was supposed to fly in from Austin, Texas.

      An official at the airport said apparently the flight had been changed or canceled.

      Kansas athletic director Lew Perkins has refused to speak with reporters since the school announced earlier in the week that he would retire in September 2011. Jim Marchiony, an associate athletic director at Kansas, said Perkins was “working around the clock” to find a major conference for the Jayhawks if the Big 12 continues to crumble.
      © KSAL News

    • OT says:

      I do NOT buy this story one bit.

      Everyone and his brother and sister has figured out by now that Chip Brown is getting his info from Texas AD DeLoss Dodds.

      Dodds has to cover his a– because he has to testify in front of the State of Texas House of Representatives on Wednesday.

      I expect all h— will break loose again after the hearing on Wednesday.

    • John says:

      So let me get this straight…

      Beebe has 6 months to work on TV packages that will ensure the sustainability of the Big 12 and he comes up with one only after Nebraska and Colorado move on?

      He pulls this off despite aTm having detailed conversations with the SEC, which HAS to be getting some input from at least ESPN?

      He does this despite certain B12 South schools having detailed conversations with the P-16 despite Fox involvement there?

      Meanwhile, Missouri has been linked to the MWC which is undoubtedly working with Comcast to understand the financial impact there.

    • Bamatab says:

      So let me get this straight. Last week (according to UT) the Big 12-lite was not revivable if Nebraska left. It couldn’t be done, no way no how. Now that aTm decides to not be UT’s lapdog and actually try and better itself, Beebe all of a sudden solves the unanswerable riddle of how the Big 12-lite can be saved and that can pay each school in the neighborhood of $17m? The Big 12-lite, that has been exposed as a conference that will be made up of UT and a bunch of schools that will have to do their bidding (which appears fom the outside looking in to have a great deal of animosity because of that fact)?

      First off, would a tv network actually consider giving this conference a deal worth that much money (even when the ACC could only get $13-$14m which no one expected only because ABC/ESPN got into an unexpected bidding war with Fox) even though it appears to be a house of cards? I don’t see how Beebe can guarantee that to the schools. Nor do I see how the schools could actually believe him.

      Also, how can aTm actually see the desperation that UT is now expressing in keeping them from going to the SEC, and not realize that moving to the SEC is actually in their best interest? There is a reason why UT is now scrambling to make sure this doesn’t happen. And I don’t buy that the only reason that UT doesn’t want aTm to go to the SEC is because they are afraid that the SEC schools will start recruiting all of the Texas recruits. UT will still sign practically any player they want in Texas. Heck, their recruiting classes are usually almost complete by the end of the summer. I personally think UT is truely scared that aTm might actually level the playing field (to an extent) with them both on the field and in the media. Heck if aTm goes to the SEC, they might actually get a little bit of exposure in the media and may actually get a couple more recruits.

      Heck if I’m aTm, I wouldn’t fall for this latest ploy. Even if UT and Beebe could revive the Big 12-lite, it would be a house of cards with watered down competition (with Nebraska leaving).

    • twk says:

      Odds are that this is merely a PR stunt by UT trying to paint the Aggies as the bad guys.

      First, Beebe does not have a firm contract offer–all he has is “information,” and my understanding is that the numbers come from Fox, and are based upon a VERY long term contract, something like 18 years.

      Second, if Texas still gets its own network, I think that this would probably be a deal breaker for A&M. A&M needs to be in a conference that has its own network, or has such a good TV deal that only a minimal amount of games would be available for a cable network (the state is so big, and the A&M fan base so widely distributed that it would be hard for A&M to set up a cable network that would come anywhere close to what Texas gets).

      Finally, as we’ve all seen with the recent reshuffling, signing a new TV deal wouldn’t lock Texas into the Big XII any more than Colorado and Nebraska were locked in. Any time they wanted, Texas could simply leave for another conference, or, if their cable network works really well, go independnt as they have threatened.

    • Kyle2MSU says:

      Funny that they’d be willing to do that now, but not earlier when Nebraska asked for reassurances.

  83. duffman says:

    Tony Barnhart at the AJC.

    for a guy not supposed to be writing till July 5th (vacation?) this expansion things seems to have interrupted it.

    “We’re going to take our annual June break in order to get our batteries recharged and to do all the chores that Mrs. College Football has on her list. We’ll resume our daily efforts on Monday, July 5 when we’ll start getting ready for what is already shaping up to be another wild season.”

    Having written 3 stories since, my guess is the “HoneyDo List” is on hold till this thing begins to shake out. Mr. College Football, we all may be in the doghouse the longer this goes on!

    • Playoffs Now! says:

      5. Will the Big Ten stop at 12? If you’re an SEC fan, this is the conference you should be watching. Even if there is a Pac-16 with Texas and Oklahoma in it, I don’t think the SEC will feel compelled to expand. And if the SEC gets Texas A&M and adds another school (insert your favorite team here) then it could stop at 14. That puts the SEC into the Texas market and makes their television package more valuable. That would be seen as a win for the SEC.

      But if the Big Ten exercises the nuclear option and goes to 16, the SEC will have some intresting decisions to make. Under that scenario I once thought the SEC would look to the ACC. I no longer feel strongly that will be the case.

  84. [...] Big Ten’s expansion guru, Frank the Tank, talks about a little known contractual agreement in the Big East that may force Notre Dame’s hand in expansion, and it has nothing to do with [...]

  85. Hank says:

    if the expansion carousel stops now, at least for the ime being, I’m very happy with where the Big Ten winds up. Nebraska is such a great and natural fit it already seems like they’ve been in for years. This is a Penn State level addition. just a great fit.

    • zeek says:

      Just comparing the moves, the Big Ten comes out way ahead. And when the Pac-12 (Utah/Colorado) CCG with the Big Ten CCG, I’m almost certain that the Pac-12 CCG will look like the ACCCG whereas the Big Ten CCG will resemble the SECCG.

  86. Hank says:

    this is scond hand from a friend I trust…

    I can vouch for this guy – he is a fairly close friend. As late as a week ago, he didn’t think it was going to happen. But now…

    VT is in a freaking bind here. It looks like A&M is bucking the trend and not giving into Texas’s strong-arming and going to the SEC. If that happens then it is very, very likely that the 14th team is going to come from the ACC – and VT is a prime candidate (*the* prime candidate?) for spot #14 since it’s a new TV market and doesn’t conflict with any of the current SEC teams’ wishes.

    I know that LSU and Alabama admins are very much for VT being in the SEC. On the academic side, VT and A&M are basically sister schools (only 2 non-military schools in country with a Corps of Cadets).

    The bind is that VT wants to be in the ACC due to the geographic advantages and academics, but can’t really pass up an SEC offer if it means that another ACC team will be selected if VT declines. I think either way VT will be ok, but our administration may have some tough decisions to make.

  87. Bullet says:

    Someone usually links Mr.SEC so I’m not going to link it again. Easy enough to find if noone has. He has a number of links in his article, including an interview with the IU athletic director. Interesting point is that the IU AD thinks some form of playoff is inevitable and soon.

    If B12-2 holds together (do we trade names with B10+1+1?), wonder if that would still be his thinking. The one thing I do like about the 4 superconferences is that it does facilitate a playoff. Its a lot easier to do an 8 team (or 9 with a play-in) tournament that’s relatively inclusive when you only have 4 autobids instead of 6; and 7 to 9 conferences instead of 11.

  88. Hank says:

    sorry to make the above clear, the source is a member of the VT administration.

    • doogie says:

      Texas schools will stay with big 12 and stay a 10 member league. Loss of colorado was actually no big deal for the league because they were under-achievers and brought little value to the league, according to recent comments by B12 commish.

      Losing Nebraska calculates to an 8-10% loss in league value, which will be made up in the new TV deal since only 10 schools are splitting the TV money pie, plus the exilt money garnered from CO and Neb.

      With 10 schools, north and south divisions will be discarded and everyone will play everyone, ending the problemmatic north v south divisions. Also, Texas will be able to start their own TV thing, which it wouldn’t be able to do in the new PAC16.

      Lots of great reasons for the B12 (now B10) to stay together. B10 will concentrate on Big East now to force ND into the fold. They will probably take Delaney’s fav Rutgers, I think, then put pressure on ND and stop at 14 for a while and see what other conferences are doing by then.

      I think Texas is willing to stay put and keep their kingly stature in the B12. It’s aTm that holds the cards. Frank, you are right, they would get a great deal in the SEC. Can the B12 overcome aTm leaving…dunno about that.

      Rumors are that B12 is asking Arkansas to dump SEC (never was a good fit) and join B12. B12 TV deal coming up is a whopper if it stays together, and may be more lucrative for ARK to leave, but who knows, if aTm goes, Ark will stay put in SEC.

      My money is on the B12 staying together, the PAC 10 adds Utah and gets dissapointed on their grand scheme, the B10 adds Rutgers and ND, and from then on, God only knows.

      • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

        If A&M and Arkansas switch there is no reason for the SEC to add another or 14th team.

        In many ways I think that would be a trade that would benefit all parties (which is the key to any good trade)

      • Kyle says:

        Colorado was under-achieving? psh; sounds like sour grapes from Beebe. Colorado was very good for the first decade of the big 12. There’s a reason they had their season ending game against Nebraska.

        No way Arkansas voluntarily gets of the SEC gravy-train.

  89. duffman says:

    ESPN.. just reported..

    Pac 10 will happen – new Pac 16 move all but assured as beebe has failed to hold things together.

    A&M split – looks like has enough votes to SEC
    leave “new” Pac 16, leave UT and OU

    Utah has edge on Kansas to Pac 16

    Pac 10 Larry Scott “selling dream” to Big 12

    ESPN reporting move will be done at or before upcoming meetings

  90. Up until not very long ago (last week), I thought that Texas ran the smartest athletic department in the country, However, if Texas is truly committing to this 10-team Big 12 instead of posturing, their hubris is going to be their long-term downfall. If Texas A&M has any brains whatsoever, they will be going to the SEC immediately.

    • John says:

      It is remarkable how the one with the most power in this whole thing seems to always be forced into things.

      • zeek says:

        Yeah, this seems as a way of UT getting A&M to commit to the Big 12 as well.

        It would be hilarious though if A&M actually did manage to bolt to the SEC (I think it’s very remote if Texas commits to the Big 12) because then Texas would be forced into the Pac-10′s arms.

        Texas has not done that great a job of giving out ultimatums.

        If Perlman was right that they told him they would not commit to the Big 12 if Missouri/Colorado left, then Texas handled this in a disastrous way.

        It was obvious to all of us that only Nebraska/ND/Texas justified Big Ten expansion to 12 (and stopping).

        Sure, Perlman made the TV rights offer, but still, Texas hasn’t been handling the poker playing that well at all.

      • Playoffs Now! says:

        Funny how the gripe is that TX is too powerful and doesn’t listen, but when TX does listen and cooperates instead of powering ahead, that’s considered just as bad.

        Often the wisest use of power is actually deploying it as little as possible. The perception of the power is what’s key.

    • loki_the_bubba says:

      My perspective from down here.

      aTm has been an SEC school since at least the ’60s. It’s about time they made it official.

      Texas hubris has been a problem the entire time. I’ve tried to talk to Texas fans and explain to them that their geographic situation is a problem. They will be an outlier no matter what conference they go to. They think they just get to pick where they go.

      Also, no one here wants to talk about the fact that the state has too many D1A programs (10, with two more in the pipeline, Texas State and UTSA).

      • wyzerman says:

        Updated: June 14, 2010, 10:38 AM ET
        Sources: Departure to Pac-10 coming

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        By Joe Schad

        The departure of Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State to the Pac-10 is imminent, four sources within the Big 12 said Monday.

        One source said commissioner Dan Beebe’s last-minute plan to save the conference has “zero” chance to succeed. Another source said it is “very unlikely” to succeed.

        Texas’ interests in being aligned with the research opportunities and academic missions of Pac-10 schools is driving the decision, along with money.

        Beebe’s last-ditch plan included an emotional plea about preserving rivalries and maintaining the best welfare of the student-athlete, one source said.

        Texas A&M is now most likely to join the SEC, a source within the Big 12 said. This move, in the wake of Colorado and Nebraska’s departure, would further diminish the chance of Beebe’s plan succeeding, one source said.

        Texas’ decision is expected to come no later than Tuesday. One source familiar with Texas’ plans suggested a hearing on Wednesday at the Texas House of Representatives is “a nonfactor.”

        • zeek says:

          So is this all a ploy to make A&M into another Arkansas or what?

          Because now UT has it set up in a way that if A&M bolts, UT has to bolt…

          • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

            I think that will be the spin.

            It’s not UT’s fault it’s A&M’s, and UT HAS to go to another conference now…and NO UT can NOT take Baylor or Houston, no matter how you try to force them on UT.

        • indydoug says:

          who then is PAC’s #16 team?

      • Playoffs Now! says:

        They think they just get to pick where they go.

        So far that appears to be the case. What conference is TX being forced into against their will?

        • zeek says:

          Apparently the Big Ten if Chip is right that Texas will commit to the Big 12 and ESPN is right that A&M will bolt anyways, forcing Texas into the Pac-10…

          • zeek says:

            er I meant Pac-10

          • Playoffs Now! says:

            You sure that isn’t TX’s choice?

          • zeek says:

            Well I meant in terms of appearances.

            Texas is making it appear as if they’re being forced into the Pac-10 if they commit to the Big 12 and then A&M pulls an Arkansas and bolts for the SEC.

            Chip Brown almost always writes about what Texas wants from an appearance kind of view.

            Like when Nebraska was about to bolt and he suddenly changed his tune and said “Texas is willing to make everyone a lot of money”, etc.

            You’re entirely right that Texas may in fact want the Pac-10 but is setting A&M up for the fall.

            I don’t really think that they’re acting like that though…

          • eapg says:

            “You sure that isn’t TX’s choice?”

            Yes. The status quo Big 12 was the Texas choice with an LSN for themselves. Everything beyond that is compromise because their position is eroding.

      • Bullet says:

        The 10 programs is not a problem for Texas, Tech and A&M. Its a problem for the other 7. Just as the 8 in Ohio doesn’t trouble Ohio St. Its bad for Miami, Toledo, And the 5 in Louisiana are only a problem for the 4 not in the SEC.

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          Bullet -I can’t remember LSU ever losing a recruit to ULL, ULM, Tulane or LA Tech, but it is a bad allocation of scarce state resources to prop up these mid-major schools just so they can be a punching bag for the big boys.

          There is no shame in being in 1-AA, now FCS. ULM won the 1-AA national championship back in the 80s, now they’re ecstatic to go 6-6. Maybe one day, they might even make it to the R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl.

        • loki_the_bubba says:

          It’s an issue in Texas because eight of the ten were once peers in a major conference. And most of them have not adjusted their egos/aspirations to the status of also-rans.

        • Bullet says:

          Probably a little harder to let go as unlike Miami, Toledo, LaLa, etc., most of the Texas schools were actually big time at one time. Texas A&M actually played all its home games w/Rice in Houston for about 10 years in the 50s because they drew better there. There’s a reason Rice built a 70k stadium in 1950 (and as far as sight lines, I doubt there is a better stadium in the country). TCU and Rice were DKR’s biggest challenges in the late 50s. TCU was per Royal, like a cockroach. “It wasn’t what they picked up and carried off, it was what they fell into and messed up.”

          TCU and SMU were national powers in 30s and 40s. SMU had the best professional team in Dallas in the 80s-just ask Craig James.

          UH won the SWC title 3 of the 1st 4 years in the conference. As late as 1990, they were ranked in the top 5 (before they went to Austin).

          The pros killed the small privates. UH was hurt by the pros, but mostly killed itself.

          For those who think TCU belongs in the BCS, Baylor was far and away the 4th strongest program in the conference in SWC at the end. TCU in a major conference would become a Baylor or Vanderbilt, or if they were lucky, a Northwestern.

    • Playoffs Now! says:

      My guess is that this is a bluff to:

      1) Show the legislators they did all they could
      2) Make aTm take the blame for destroying the conference, just like they did with NE. (Though in both cases it is true, they acted, TX reacted, after TX had prepared contingency plans)
      3) Get Baylor or another Texas team into the P16 for more voting power, easier travel, easier schedules, and political goodwill in the statehouse.

      However, could all of this also be about creating a playoff system based on 12-team conferences instead of 16-team?

      Here’s what I wrote yesterday:


      Can’t see OU going to the SEC without OK St or TX. Are they really going to play an SEC schedule plus those 2 rivals out of conference?

      Hence unless the SEC is willing to offer aTm, OU, AND OK St, OU goes with TX.

      Keeping the band together in a B10-too is probably just a negotiating tool and a way to show the Wed. Texas legislative hearing that all options were given due consideration. Perhaps also to make sure the P10 doesn’t bring in tougher Utah instead of closer and easier to beat KS.

      Regarding the Big Ten (sic) (sic) and some last minute shocking deal, uh, maybe. Someone had an interesting post on the NW board wondering if they’d take OU if it gets TX and ND, and why OU or aTM is necessary to get TX.

      A crazy thought: With the nexus of college football in Austin this weekend mapping out the future, could we see a Grand Compromise that shifts the expected 16-school super conference template back to 12?

      If TX and OU go to the SEC, college football becomes permanently and severely unbalanced. Not good. If TX and ND go to the B10+ and aTm and OU to the SEC and form super conferences, the P10 almost certainly can’t go past 14 and probably not 12. Again unbalanced and a bit of a mess.

      But if TX, aTm, and OU stay and take the B10-too back to 12, there’s a chance to end the arms race for now with everyone staying or reaching 12. SEC may have found the ACC too tough a nut to crack, so they’d be good with that. The P10 would be relieved. If TX is off the table and ND has her heels dug in, would B10+ be satisfied with NE and agree to a ceasefire?

      What might make this viable and lasting would be if TX gets most of the conferences to agree to a BCS overhaul into some kind of playoff system. SEC and ACC have been for that before, I could see the vulnerable P10 under new leadership agreeing if it capped conference size at 12, allowing them to maintain their academic ‘purity.’ Same for the BEast if it staves off B10+ and ACC raids. So that could be 5 of the 6 BCS conferences in favor.

      I’ve not seen a leak directly hinting in that direction, just pure speculation on my part. But recall that Delany at one point was in favor of a +1 playoff, only to have the B10+ presidents shoot him down. Not inconceivable that he could come around to a bowl-based playoff plan based on a 12-school conference template. See this post and the article it links to:

      • Playoffs Now! says:

        To emphasize, IU AD thinks a playoff is likely, and soon:

        Second, a national football playoff is in the cards. Finally.

        “Absolutely,” he said. “I’d be shocked if that didn’t happen very, very soon, maybe as soon as 2011.”


        Also note that at 12 the P10 gets to keep its academic ‘purity.’

        • zeek says:

          Those are interesting thoughts, but the Pac-10 is serious about going to 16.

          The Big Ten is also serious about going to 16 or at the very least 14 (Notre Dame isn’t going to be 12 and stop forever anymore).

          The SEC does want inroads to Texas and probably the mid-atlantic region, so they will likely attempt to end up at 14 or 16 someday.

          I don’t really think that this is all about 12 team playoffs. Every league wants more TV markets and recruiting areas, etc.

        • Bullet says:

          I was really shocked when the BE and B12 opposed the +1 plan last year. A number of coaches, ADs and even presidents have come out in favor of a playoff in those 2 leagues. I could be mistaken, but I’m pretty sure I once saw Dodds coming out in favor of a playoff. Could be only a few Presidents really liked it or they could be waiting for a better time or plan. Now might be a better time and the time to come up with a better plan.

    • Ron says:

      @Frank, this is Texas state politics. Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech all have things to consider that go beyond the self-interest of their individual institutions and athletic departments. This is part of the reason I thought Texas A&M would have been wise to accept the PAC10 offer, by trying to go their own way they make Texas, Tech and themselves vulnerable (as a group) to political manuevering that is not good for any of them.

    • Patrick says:

      Texas is AGAIN trying to lay all of the pressure and all of the political backlash on A&M. All of this is UT spin and politics. UT is not dropping the LSN, as Texas and OU have demanded (along with Nebraska last week). Texas is posturing now with ultimatums (AGAIN) because they know the deal is already done.

      Texas is using the LSN to shake the political baggage and try to get everyone else a home somewhere. Texas would make huge money (for themselves) with the LSN and none of the conference powers are going to stand by and take it. As soon as another opening comes they’ll be running from UT.

    • StvInILL says:

      Both Texas and Notre Dame want to have a one way open marriage with a conference. I really don’t think this is compatible. If they insist on it then its obvious what their best option is. That would be independence. With any conference worth its salt that would mean complete independence. If Texas sticks in a broken Big IIX then anyone can basically pencil in the conference champion for the next 10 -20 years. This would be a cake walk to the BCS.

    • duffman says:


      maybe spongebob sums it all up


    • Mike B says:

      One interesting tidbit buried in Chip Brown’s latest Orangeblood post is that the estimates Texas has received on the value of Bevo TV is $3-5 Million a year — after covering start-up costs. Not real impressive.

      IOW, this whole “keep the Big 12 thing together” is just another empty Texas promise to try to deflect blame. They know aTm can’t turn down an SEC offer.

      The real question I still have, is why Texas prefers the Pac10 to the Big Ten. Don’t buy “Tech problem” since vitrually everything that has come out of the UT mouths has proven to be, uhh, suspect.

    • JJ says:

      I disagree. I think TU setting up its own little kingdom is great for them. It’s like I say, there are other ways to make money. TU doesn’t have to join anyone to make tons of cash. Also agree that aTm should run, not walk, to the SEC.

  91. duffman says:

    How would the bloggers here feel if this is the final plays..

    A) Pac 10 goes to Pac 16 (with UT and OU)

    B) A&M and Va Tech go to SEC

    C) Big 10 gets MD and UVA

    D) UNC and NCST go to SEC

    E) Rutgers and ND go to Big 10

    F) BE/ACC and WAC/MWC form East / West secondary conferences

    G) we all go back to work, and wait till football starts in a few months.

    • zeek says:

      D) won’t happen.

      At this point the dominoes seem to have stopped, but other than that your scenarios would probably make everyone happy.

      • Bamatab says:

        zeek, don’t tell me that you are buying this “reviving the Big 12-lite” play will actually work. I mean, I guess it could, but from what I’ve read, aTm and OU do not want UT to have their LSN. And this “reviving” effort on UT’s part would be predicated on have their LSN. So UT either thinks it can strong arm aTm and OU into allowing them to have their LSN, or they know that this won’t happen so they are trying to tighten the screws on aTm and will blame them (like they did with Neb) if this doesn’t work out.

        I guess it could all work out and they salvage the Big 12-lite. But if I’m aTm, I’d tell the to “go to hell, go to hell and die”. But that is just me. :)

        • zeek says:

          Oh I agree with your sentiments completely. I think the fact that Texas is pulling this 11th hour change of heart is pretty far out there.

          Especially when they’ve lined all the schools up to have BOR meetings this week to bolt for the Pac-10.

          I think the Big 12 is still breathing though, but that we need more of a firm wording.

          Chip Brown has tended to be right on what Texas “wants”.

          But A&M can blow up the Big 12 by bolting for the SEC regardless of what Texas “wants”.

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          Bamatab – to paraphrase the original Tennessee Volunteer Davy Crockett, A&M ought to tell the Beebe and Big XII-2, “You all can go to Hell, I’m going to the SEC.”

          • duffman says:


            more irony, as texas was founded by tennessee folks who fought and died at the alamo..

            a) A&M is military so the alamo has more meaning.

            b) it is in a sense, an honor thing, for standing with tennessee, for standing with texas so long ago.

          • Bullet says:

            If you think of the SEC as a football bloodbath, you could paraphrase A&M, you…, I’m staying in Texas.

    • jokewood says:

      if the SEC makes inroads into Texas and Virginia, then I think expansion severely backfired on Delany.

    • duffman says:


      ND has said “seismic” – A) through D) fit that in my book

      with MD and UVA in the Big 10, the UNC + NCST would become the straw that broke the camels back, if UNC / NC State are still there, ND could hide from the Big 10 in the ACC.

      • zeek says:

        UNC is far less likely than Texas to end up in the SEC.

        And UNC-Duke is an unbreakable pair.

        Duke would never consider association with the SEC. They’d sooner join the Big Ten or petition the Ivy League.

      • StvInILL says:

        And would they hide in the fragile Big East if the ACC is the subject of raids? ND likes being chased or they don’t want to be chased.

    • doogie says:

      What a HUGE windfall of $$$$ for the five reaming B12 teams. OMYGOSH…..millions! The fab five need to hang together> Since you need 5 schools, according to NCAA riles to keep a league together, the remaining five STILL ar the B12 and STILL retain the BCS automatic bid.

      Now…where do they go get schools….mountain west? Conf USA?

      I say add 5 more…Utah, BYU, TCU (although TCU won’t play nice with Baylor) from mountain west and SMU, Houston, and maybe Rice (for academic reasons) form C-USA.

      OR…raid Big East Cincy and Louiville, (not up to academic standards though).

      To quote flounder in Animal House, “This is gonna be great!!”

      • loki_the_bubba says:

        Six votes dissolve the conference.

        The NCAA requires six schools playing together for five years to recognize a conference.

        The five remnants have no power if the P16 happens.

      • indydoug says:

        7 votes dissolve the conf. not 6

    • StvInILL says:

      I like the Big Ten stoping at 14 with the addtion of ND, Maryland Rutgers or Missouri.

    • Hank says:

      I’d be all for it Duff but don’t think ND moves.

    • Hu Man says:

      I’m with zeek. D) is less likely than Texas to the SEC.

      • doogie says: just announced that according to “sources” Texas will stay in B12, contradicting the Joe Shadd ESPN report:

        • wyzerman says:

          Maybe there is internal division at UT. The Athletic dept wants Big 12 Lite with the control, BevoTV network, ability to win titles that goes with it. They are Chip Brown’s source. Maybe Schad has sources in the University administration who are more driven by academic prestige (directed westward instead of north because Bill Powers is a Cal grad). Everyone assumes a Texas strategy. Maybe it is dissonance from internal disagreement

          • Hank says:

            ya think?

          • NeutronSoup says:

            That would match what Purple Book Cat is saying over at the Northwestern Rivals board. (Per his source, anyway.) Although according to the source, there is still a contingent at Texas that favors the Big Ten. Having trouble believing that, though, or at least that they have enough power to choose Big Ten over Pac 16 or a “little” Big 12.

          • Bullet says:

            Someone (don’t remember where) saying Powers likes P10 and is not convinced. Chip Brown clearly has some good sources. ESPN is quoting 4 different sources saying the opposite. I’m guessing its not over until the elephant sings.

            All along UT has said it prefers B12. This is giving them reasons to reconsider P10.

      • duffman says:

        Hu Man..

        go back to the chess model

        SEC move – Va Tech

        Big 10 move – MD (they seem ready, no matter what the “news” says – go back to my USC link a few blogs ago).

        SEC move – NC State

        Big 10 move – UVA

        Now look at the board

        Big 10 has MD & UVA
        SEC has (USC – original ACC member) + NC State

        this means the 4 of the ORIGINAL 7 ACC members are gone, will UNC stay on a sinking ship – so they go to the SEC.

        SEC move – UNC

        Big 10 move (letting SEC grab UNC) means he can sweep ND + 1 (rutgers)

        game over, delany gets ND in sacrifice of UNC.

        • zeek says:


          There is no way in the universe that UNC ends up in the SEC.

          UNC would petition the Big Ten first even if the Big Ten was at 16.

          And UNC-Duke are a pair (probably with NC State included). I just don’t see how UNC or Duke ever considers the SEC.

          The academics/institutional fit is horrible between UNC and the SEC.

          • zeek says:

            Oh, and Delany would add UNC even if the Big Ten was at 16 and had to go to 18 to accomodate them.

            They’re a Texas/Florida-sized deal in the mid-atlantic.

          • duffman says:


            adding A&M, Va Tech, and NC State to UGA, UF, Vandy gives the SEC academic “street cred”

            on duke, look at Kansas, an remember that FOOTBALL drives the bus, everybody else is just along for the ride.

            UNC vs UK would be the new rivals between 2 STATE schools with Big Football stadiums (Duke seats 30,000 and can not fill it) it goes back to football math, which puts duke at a HUGE disadvantage! With UNC vs UK you get a DUAL rival in FB and BB!

          • zeek says:

            duffman, it won’t happen.

            You would need the SEC to merge with the Big Ten for UNC to consider joining it.

            UF/UGa/Vandy/A&M/VTech have street cred with UNC sure (although I’m not that sure about VTech considering that UNC/Duke didn’t want anyone added last time).

            But there’s 9 other schools in the SEC.

            UNC would join the Big North (aka Big Ten) before they step foot into the SEC.

            Even if the cultural fit is worse which the Big Ten (which I think is dubious), the institutional fit is way off the radar in the SEC.

          • duffman says:


            the Mississippi schools are the only tier 3 and that is just the way history has gone. but after that things look much better, and UNC would wind up in the east were there are more “academic” fits.

            I am not saying it will happen, I am saying “what if” and the one thing we are forgetting ….

            the SEC and ACC are ESPN
            the Big 10 is FOX

            My guess is ESPN would rather keep UNC with ESPN (SEC) than see it go to FOX (Big 10).

          • zeek says:

            Using US News rankings as a proxy for academic status is absurd.

            Southern universities obviously get less credit in terms of academia because academic associations tend to have a distinct Northern bent like the AAU, etc.

            It’s not about how many Tier 3s or whatever the SEC has.

            It just doesn’t have the perception of being an academically deep conference based on other factors as well (AAU, etc.).

            Adding A&M doesn’t fix that.

            The perception out there is that the ACC is a bunch of highly ranked undergraduate schools.

            That is decidedly not the perception of the SEC, and it never will be no matter who they add to the conference.

            Sure that might be bias, but that’s how it is.

          • zeek says:

            And I meant ranked generally, not just US News but in terms of publishing etc.

          • Bullet says:

            UNC didn’t want to expand ACC. UT is motivated very strongly by $. I agree. UT has almost no chance of going to SEC and is exponentially more likely than UNC.

        • PSUGuy says:

          NC State dosn’t go anywhere because of the same politics that Texas has. The NC schools are in the ACC until it falls apart.

          I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the only school I could see the SEC realistically poaching from the ACC is Clemson.

          VT might be interested, but I think the VA legislature would reflexively say “no” after all the strings they pulled to get them into the ACC.

          • duffman says:


            my point! NCST and UNC are pairs so they wind up in SEC.

            with VT in SEC, UVA is no longer a pair and can go to Big 10 with MD.

          • PSUGuy says:

            More likely UNC tells NCState to shut up and go back to the ACC than both get drug to the SEC by NCState.

    • Bamatab says:

      duffman, I don’t see the SEC taking one school from the west and three schools from the east. I mean I guess they could, but they would have to move Vandy over to the SEC West. Also, I don’t think that the SEC would want to add two schools from the same North Carolina market. If UNC demanded the SEC to take someone, I think the SEC would try for Duke before it would NCST. I think instead that if the SEC got aTm, VT, UNC (again if); they might go after Mizzou since Mizzou would be expanding their footprint Northwest and would be adding the STL and possibly KC tv markets.

      • PSUGuy says:

        But that’s the thing…I really think the SEC is very limited in its options and is going to have to be more of a “beggar” than a “chooser” if they are serious about getting to 16.

        The NC schools are pretty much tied together, I mean its taking the possible disbanding of the Big12 for the SEC to even have a shot at TAMU. I think the same is going to hold true for the ACC and I simply don’t see the same issues which could cause the ACC to fall apart like the Big12 seems to be doing.

        As I’ve said before, Clemson I could see. Maybe VT, but again VA politics might tell them “not a chance in hell” due to the strings that needed pulling to get them into the ACC. Other northern/eastern ACC schools I feel are either equally tied to the “Tobacco Road” contingent or so far out that they simply would be considered (MD/BC).

        Looking west, Texas and OK seem to be tied at the hip and determined to go to the Pac, if they swap conferences. Kansas & Mizzou are free floating (if the Big12 does disband) but one might get snatched by the Pac and there’s still a chance the BigTen might grab Mizzou. TAMU would be a grand slam for the SEC admittedly.

        Looking north, you have WVU, a school that I think would be perfect in the SEC actually, but one that they might not want due to demographics, or picking form Cinci, Louisville, etc. There has been some success from those programs, but are they “SEC quality” and again from a markets perspective will probably only dilute the SEC payouts, not enhance them.

        Looking south you really only have FSU and Miami…one school (Miami) who I think flat out refuses to join the SEC and one (FSU) that I think feels the “SEC ship” has sailed as far as desire to join that conference.

        Between everything could the SEC move to 14 or 16? Sure, but I have to believe (most of) these additions are going to hurt, rather than enhance, the SEC brand (in the form of per school payouts).

        • Bamatab says:


          I’ll have to disagree with you on the SEC’s options. I think that in the West, aTm is a likely option as well as Mizzou. I think that with the Big 10 only taking Nebraska and leaving Mizzou to fend for itself, if the SEC offered them they would jump at the chance. I think that Mizzou honestly thought that they would get an invite from the Big 10. And now that they Big 12 is imploding, they are scrambling and doing everything they can to try and salvage it (along with the remaining 4 or 5 schools that would be left out if the others go to the Pac 10) because they did not expect to be in this situation. Even if a SEC offer caused the Big 10 to make an offer, would Mizzou be willing to forgive the Big 10 for leaving them hanging? Maybe, but it’s far from a sure thing.

          In the East, I think that the SEC has two sets of options. The first option is what I feel is the SEC’s backup plan. If they can’t get a VT or UNC then they go for the schools already in their footprint (FSU, GT, and Clemson). As I’ve stated on this blog before, I truely believe that FSU was Slive’s original partner with aTm, but their neigboring schools put that to a halt for recruiting reasons. I think that Slive has reevaluated his plan and now would prefer to get schools outside of the SEC’s current footprint. But if we can’t get a VT or UNC, then I still believe that FSU and Clemson would definitely jump, and GT might as well, although they may be a little less likely.

          So now the first option for the East is to try for the schools in new markets. Now you stated that you don’t think that VT or UNC would be as willing to jump to the SEC because the ACC isn’t in the same position as the Big 12. Well what if the SEC is forced to go after FSU, Clemson, and GT? And what if the Big 10 decides to go after Maryland and Virginia? If you think that UNC and VT would want to be left in a conference that has to substitute Big East schools for those schools, then I think you are crazy. VT and UNC do not want to be in Mizzou’s or Kansas’s (if they don’t get a Pac 10 invite)shoes. I think we both can agree on that.

          For anyone to believe that the SEC doesn’t currently have options, I think that they are truely mistaken. The SEC is the premier football conference out there (UT is finding that out the hard way). Plus, if they add aTm and possibly a Mizzou, then they can offer a much better looking academic conference for VT and UNC once they join.

          Again, this is just my honest opinion from a SEC point of view..

          • zeek says:

            VaTech and FSU are very gettable for the SEC.

            FSU only went to the ACC over the SEC because of Bowden, etc., not because of academics.

            VaTech is the same as A&M and would probably prefer to be in the SEC even though the ACC is a better fit geographically.

            Clemson, GaTech, Miami are much harder to grab because they like the academic perception of the ACC.

            But, if VaTech and FSU bolt for the SEC, that puts Clemson at least in play because the athletic quality of the ACC starts to drop dramatically in terms of football.

            Let’s not discuss UNC anymore, that one is a waste of time.

            UNC and Duke (and NC State) are going to end up in the same conference no matter what happens. It won’t be the SEC.

            The SEC has plenty of options.

          • Bamatab says:

            zeek, I very seriously doubt that Clemson would factor in academics when trying to decide if they want to come to the SEC. From everything I’ve ever heard or read from their fanbase, they already see themselves as more of an SEC team than an ACC team. Now GT and Miami on the other hand might factor academics into the decision.

          • zeek says:

            Bamatab, I include what I think the administrators think and why they’re in the ACC.

            VaTech and FSU are only in the ACC because of athletics. Yes, they can claim to be associating with a higher rated group of academics, but that’s just window dressing.

            GaTech and Miami tend to be the opposite in that their administrators love being associated with UNC/UVA/Duke/Md, but they may be obtained if the athletics (read football) gets gutted due to a loss of FSU/VaTech.

            Clemson is a mix of both. I do tend to agree that Clemson is obtainable if FSU/VaTech are in play since that starts to sink the football/athletic quality of the conference.

            I don’t think it’s anywhere near the slam dunk that the other two are.

            Although, the SEC is the only possible alternative for Clemson unlike the others which may be able to all jump to the Big Ten if they really have to…

            So that might figure into their calculations and they may be almost as willing to jump as FSU and VaTech.

            Regardless, the rest of my argument stands. I made the same argument with duffman below about what schools are most likely to jump when/why.

          • Bullet says:

            Wouldn’t divisions be difficult if it was 2E and 2W? AL/TN, AU/GA would be difficult. If you keep those every year, you may never play the other schools in the East. Does AL still care that much about MS and MS St.(I’m presuming you’re a Bama fan)?

            I just think the SEC would have difficulty approving anything more than 14 unless there were 4 viable candidates in the west.

          • PSUGuy says:

            Not arguing too much on any specific point you make. Only making the simple argument that there are actually some fairly hard borders that the SEC runs into (BigTen, heart of ACC) the limit its expansion options.

            Could they expand? Sure. The problem is do the additions help or hurt the SEC brand and its per school payout.

            Even if they get GT (which I highly doubt)does it add $17+ million? Clemson? Mizzou?

            The SEC has built its image around “the Brand” and that brand, as you said, is “the preminent college football conference in America”. It already has enough 2nd tier programs (good teams that get decent ratings, but only really have regional draw), at least in my opinion.

            Adding more of the same, without adding national brands is the problem I think Slive & Co. are facing right now and are trying to figure out will that really increase the SEC payout or decrease it?

    • Vincent says:

      D) won’t happen because UNC has no interest whatsoever in the SEC; moreover, it would mean the SEC expanded by three in the east, one in the west. Does Vanderbilt go west to even out the divisions? Don’t see it. UNC also has closer ties to Duke than it does to NCSU.

      I think State could wind up in the SEC — NCSU needs something to revive its rather morose fan base — and now that Missouri is almost certainly off the Big Ten table, the SEC could probably pick it up. Both State and Mizzou would be “buy low” options for the SEC. (It would be sort of a historical irony for N.C. State, insomuch as its hiring of Everett Case and its subsequent elevation into a basketball power was done because it was then a weakling in football, poor cousins to UNC and Duke. Now, State would use football as a way to escape the gigantic blue basketball shadows at the other legs of the Research Triangle.)

    • Richard says:

      I agree on everything except UNC to the SEC. That has virtually no chance of happening. The NC schools are as tied together as the Texas schools, so if UT can head to the Pac16 while TAMU joins the SEC, UNC can certainly go to the Big20 while NCSU joins the SEC.

      How I finally see it shake out:
      Big10 adds Maryland, Virginia, UNC, Duke, GTech, & Miami(/FSU). If ND decides to play along, they enter with Rutgers to form a Big20 (a Big18 is workable as well if they don’t). Heck, Big10 could take both Miami & FSU along with ND instead of Rutgers. Both FSU & Miami will become AAU members fairly soon.

      SEC addes TAMU, VTech, NCSU, and either FSU (if they want the brand name) or Mizzou (if they want the new territory) to go to 16.

      Pac16 picks up either Mizzou or Kansas/Utah.

      BE would gladly add Clemson (and FSU/Miami if available). WFU will have to beg to enter the BE. Maybe BC as well (because of the animosity from last time).

      The Rose Bowl conferences have a presence in every region of the US except the poor parts of the SEC. The SEC is in all parts of the south, and thus the richest recruiting regions in the country.

      Plus1 will feature ose Bowl winner vs. SEC/other winner in the national championship game.

  92. doogie says:

    Now up to aTm to decide. I don’t think Texas would committ to B12 w/out aTm, so we’ll see.

  93. doogie says:

    B12 to stay together, according to

  94. Playoffs Now! says:

    As suspected, this is basically a negotiating tactic. What it probably is primarily about:

    # Key hangup for UT in move to P10 is its desire for a Longhorn Network. It doesn’t want to give that up. about 1 hour ago via web

    • zeek says:

      Well the question now is how badly are Stanford/Cal willing to get rolled over to accommodate Texas?

      I mean taking OSU/Tech on is one thing. But now, Texas gets to keep its own local media rights and there’s no Pac-10 Network?

      Yeah USC has been hit by a nuke, so the Pac-10 will obviously be hurting over the next couple of years. But just how much are they willing to give to Texas?

      Pretty soon, Texas will be running it…

      • StvInILL says:

        Who did that song “it is the end of the world as we know it!” ? I think this is subliminally playing at the Pac 10 offices.

      • eapg says:

        We all know how well the last marriage of convenience worked out.

        Texas insisting on the LSN probably drives a stake through the heart of the Pac 10 deal, so putting it out there means that is what Texas wants to do. This has been the view from my side of the fence from the beginning, that the Pac 10 offer was a poorly calibrated bluff. Texas didn’t understand how much animosity they’ve created around the conference. A&M to the SEC may have finally opened their eyes, and now they’re just buying time because they’re in scramble mode.

        • Playoffs Now! says:

          Cornwhiner fairy tales.

          • zeek says:

            Chip Brown is proving them to be more truth than myth.

          • Patrick says:


            Aren’t you supposed to be blaming / hating on A&M this week. Then OU is penciled in for next week.

            At some point if everyone runs away from you…. the problem is still them.

            By July 1, Nebraska and Texas are likely in the same Big Ten division, so it doesn’t really matter.

          • Playoffs Now! says:

            Aren’t you supposed to be blaming / hating on A&M this week.

            I’ve been posting support for aTm going to the SEC. That’s what I want.

  95. loki_the_bubba says:

    “C-USA Is Ready To Dine on Delicious Big 12 Leftovers”

    Haven’t read the article, but I lol’ed at the headline

  96. duffman says:

    Is there anybody reading this blog with strong ACC insider views like Bama and Alan (for the SEC) or FLP (for ND) that can give us a true read on the ACC? vincent where are you, and is there anybody else?

    • zeek says:

      Any rumor of Maryland/UVA/UNC/Duke going anywhere near the SEC is absurd.

      The true read on the ACC is that VaTech is probably the most willing to make the jump. Bamatab is right that culturally/instituional fit-wise, VaTech makes the most sense in the SEC, especially with how similar it is to Texas A&M. But PSUGuy is right that VaTech may not make the jump after the political capital expended to get into the ACC. And geography/culture/institutional fit work for VaTech in the ACC well enough.

      The rest of the ACC sees the ACC as having much higher ranked undergraduate schools as well as some research intensive universities.

      Clemson, Miami, GaTech may not be willing to make the jump if it means a downgrade in academic perception.

      Yes, they may make the jump based on athletic fit, but of all of the ACC schools, the most likely to jump is VaTech followed by FSU.

      So the list of jumpers in terms of how likely they are to jump is:

      Most likely to jump if offer on table (but other factors such as Va. politics/UF not wanting another Florida school may get in the way):
      1) VaTech
      2) FSU

      May jump if offer on table due to athletic fit, but academic perception hurts likelihood:
      3) Clemson
      4) GaTech
      5) Miami

      Not likely to jump (because of staying with other ACC schools):
      6) NC State

      Won’t go near the SEC (some obviously not worth inviting since they don’t add anything to SEC):
      7) UNC
      8) UVA
      9) Maryland
      10) Boston College
      11) Duke
      12) Wake Forest

      • duffman says:


        are you an ACC grad / undergrad / alum?

        if so what school(s)?

        • zeek says:

          Not an ACC grad.

          • duffman says:


            while i like your posts, I was trying to use this thread to get input they way i have with alan, flp, bama, and others who have a closer feel to their respective groups.


          • zeek says:

            Well, I attended schools that see themselves in the same league academically as those institutions.

            They all think differently.

            Just because Vandy is in the SEC, doesn’t mean UNC is a fit.

            We have to weigh how each school measures academics versus athletics in the realm of a conference as well as perception.

          • duffman says:


            “Well, I attended schools that see themselves in the same league academically as those institutions.”

            sorta like that Ad that went ” I am not a doctor, but I played one on TV”

            I said from the beginning you have to think like your enemy, not like you want him to think. when you do that, you have already lost.

            I am trying to think like the enemy, so as to set a line of defense. Simple as that, I humbly suggest you do the same.

          • zeek says:

            Duffman, read all of the replies to my argument. The ACC grads agree with my characterization of the situation.

            We need to stick to what makes sense.

            UNC and co. are not desperate to keep up with the Big Ten/SEC as the Pac-10 is. They’re going to continue to act in a manner similar to the Big Ten’s expansion push which requires academics to be weighed when any expansion scenario comes up.

      • ShockFX says:

        One additional note on VTech. It wasn’t that much political capital expended. UVA simply withheld a ‘yes’ vote for expansion until Syracuse was dropped for VTech, due to the governor’s concerns over VTech being in the Big East and it being hurt by expansion. Therefore I’d imagine that VTech COULD in fact join the SEC without a big deal, because the primary concern was VTech finding a good home, and the ACC or SEC provide that. Now, if VTech left, the ACC would swiftly invite Syracuse, as was the plan nearly 10 years ago.

        • zeek says:

          True, and while I don’t think it affects my list; I do agree that VaTech can jump and be replaced by Syracuse, which would leave the ACC feeling happy.

          And the Big Ten might be happy because we could grab Rutgers etc.

      • Chrispy says:

        zeek pretty much hit on the ACC concerns. Miami’s AD has come out and stated they aren’t leaving the ACC.

        VT seems the most likely, but they have immersed themselves in the ACC. They have a joint vetrinary medicine school with Maryland started and a joint biomedical engineering program with Wake Forest’s medical school after joining the ACC. It would be surprising to see VT jump ship after working for over 50 years to get into the ACC and working on academic collaborations as well. I also wonder about the political angle after UVA was pressured to vote for VT during the ACC expansion in 2003.

        Of course, this is all coming from a Wake Forest alumnus who realizes Wake will be the last school holding the ACC banner if the whole thing were to blow up. But I don’t think that’s likely.

        • zeek says:

          As I stated, I only see VaTech and FSU being in play because “originally” they joined the ACC as a marriage of athletics convenience.

          VaTech is still only a few years into its time in the ACC, so we have to see how gettable they are.

          You bring up some interesting information worth considering on their academic collaboration with other ACC schools.

          That might dampen the enthusiasm among administrators for a jump to the SEC.

          We need more information like that to help shape the discussion.

          • zeek says:

            As to your concerns about Wake Forest being the last to hold the banner; you’d need a Big Ten-ACC merger for that to even really be a possibility.

            UNC enjoys its fiefdom, and the Big Ten isn’t likely to go to 20 any time in the next couple decades, so it won’t happen.

            16 and stopping with Notre Dame is the optimal scenario…

        • Vincent says:

          Virginia Tech’s joint veterinary school with Maryland wouldn’t be altered if they were in different athletic conferences. I believe Iowa State hosts a veterinary program with South Dakota, and they certainly have no athletic ties aside from the USD Coyotes or SDSU Jackrabbits making occasional tries to Ames for non-conference games.

          Athletically, the ties between Tech and UVa are nowhere as strong as those between UNC and NCSU or OU and Okie State. Heck, as late as the 1960s Tech’s archrival was Virginia Military Institute (they would close the football season against each other in Roanoke).

          • zeek says:

            A good point, and Nebraska specifically mentioned in their press conference that switching to the Big Ten/CIC would not harm their joint research programs with Iowa State (I think they had some significant research ties for ag/med)…

    • Hu Man says:

      duffman, I’m not a true ACC insider (I don’t have connections within the offices). I am a transplant here from Michigan for graduate school at UVa. Zeek is spot on though on the culture and what schools would go to the SEC. Although, I think GaTech would be love to join the Big Ten over SEC. The ACC’s core, NC schools, UVa and Maryland, is a strong group. The two schools who I think are least tied to the ACC are BC and VT. BC with its location, and VT’s culture.

      As a response to your earlier comment to chess, I am saying think like a university president. Research and donations are more important than athletics. Those two criteria are how top presidents are judged.

      • duffman says:

        Hu Man,

        agreed, but after 80% – 90% of the terp site (like 91 pages!) looked like they were tired of the (A)ll (C)arolina (C)onference they were happy to move away from the ACC. I was surprised as the Terps were an ACC founder, yet they are happy to go.

        Maybe the most telling part of this round of realignment, is exposing fractures in the “happy conference” that we have all though for years. Think of history.

        The Big 10 and SEC have long history, the ACC is a “modern” conference compared to them. I have made this point often, and see this is based on time together. If A&M goes to the SEC it goes “home” to the old SIAA and SoCon roots that gave the SEC and ACC life. People on this blog remember when Ga Tech was SEC and USC was ACC. They remember a Pac 5,6,7,8 & a SWC & a Big 8. I am saying while no matter how remote, I am saying it IS possible.

        • SH says:

          I’m an ACC school grad, but I was there before the ACC football expansion. Back then, the school was truly a basketball conference. Some of that identity was lost during the football expansion. However, it has still retained it. Obviously, when you think of the ACC you think of basketball first. That was true even when FSU was dominating the football scnene and was a true national power.

          That is why I think in hindsight, UNC/Duke probably wish they had voted for Syracuse. As a bball school, Syr would have allowed the ACC to maintain that identity. However, the expansion cost the ACC its home and home schedule with each team.

          All that being said, that ship has sailed and football is clearly the driving force behind any move.

          To some extent UVA/UNC could culturly fit into the SEC. They are both southern schools (though UVA has a huge population from MD/NY/NY) with southern traditions. However, I wonder how UNC would feel about being in the same conference as KY? For both schools, they are (or consider themselves) top 5 public schools. So, I think from that perspective it just would not work. Plus, the ACC has a fairly long history together. So did the Big 8 to some degree. But the minute they expanded to the B12 and separated OK from the rest – that cohesiveness fell apart. I still think the ACC maintains that cohesiveness – though it isn’t as strong as it used to be.

          Va Tech and Clemson are the schools that would best fit in with the SEC, with Va Tech having the advantage of being in VA in which there is not currently a school and having a football program in the present and not one in the past.

          The ACC is never going to be as strong as the SEC or B10, but there is room and a need for another “power conference,” and probably one on east coast.

  97. SuperD says:

    SIAP: Looks like the Texas statehouse politics are just getting started. If we thought this was a circus now wait till Wednesday.

    Please tell me the Texas statehouse broadcasts their hearings over the web…this could be great entertainment. I think we may now know why we have Texas trying to shift as much blame as possible to A&M. Apparently all the small schools will have representatives here as well and the guy running things is an SMU guy. Their alums couldn’t possibly want their pound of flesh for what happened 15 years ago could they…nah, lol. Is the PAC sure they really want this drama in this conference? At this point I’m so glad CU is putting this crap behind us, even if we pay the penalty to get out and don’t make as much if Texas doesn’t come.

    If Texas truly believes keeping the band together is viable this may be Texas’s way of cutting down A&M’s leverage to make them give up the LSN if they stay.

    • duffman says:


      if they do lets get a link as this blog would draw HUGE ratings!

    • loki_the_bubba says:

      As I continue to aver, Texas has too many D1A teams (10->12). Each of them wanting a piece of this. SMU is arguably the #9 in the football order, yet they want revenge.

    • eapg says:

      The only grouping that gives Texas their LSN is a Texas Conference. Or the SEC. And with the SEC, it’s the leavings that get on the LSN, if they could ever get past the academic/athletic horror of it all in the first place.

      • SuperD says:

        I’m not sure academics is the only reason why Texas doesn’t want the SEC. Mack knows that conference is a meat grinder and I don’t think they want to go to a conference with that many alpha dogs.

        • loki_the_bubba says:

          This “SEC is so difficult Texas doesn’t want to go” needs to stop. The SEC is marginally on top right now. They won’t be forever. I doubt Texas is afraid of Arkansas, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, Auburn, South Carolina, LSU, Kentucky, or even Georgia and Tennessee. They may consider Alabama and Florida peers.

          • eapg says:

            “This “SEC is so difficult Texas doesn’t want to go” needs to stop.”

            Why then is it as easy to find as the nearest Texas message board? Not in so many words, but it’s there.

          • GreatLakeState says:

            The SEC is the Dolly Parton of top-heavy conferences. Even more so than the Big Ten.

          • m (Ag) says:

            “This “SEC is so difficult Texas doesn’t want to go” needs to stop”

            If you’ve read comments on just about any story about A&M going to the SEC, you’ll see lots of UT and TT fans saying that A&M will get run over by the competition there.

            The underlying message is crystal clear: they don’t think the Big 12 is as competitive as the SEC. That may not be true, but there are a large numbers of fans in Texas evidently believe it.

            Of course, the idea that A&M shouldn’t search out a conference with the highest level of competition is silly.

          • loki_the_bubba says:

            @m(Ag): “If you’ve read comments on just about any story about A&M going to the SEC, you’ll see lots of UT and TT fans saying that A&M will get run over by the competition there.

            The underlying message is crystal clear: they don’t think the Big 12 is as competitive as the SEC. ”

            I think the underlying message is clear. aTm would get run over in the SEC because they have fallen to the #5 program in the B12S. UT and TT fans are slamming the Aggies much more than they are praising the SEC.

          • m (Ag) says:

            I disagree—the general point they make is “How foolish A&M would be to go there, they would just be run over”.

            Which imply they would not get run over in the Pac 16.

          • loki_the_bubba says:

            That merely implies that the SEC is somewhat herder than the P10. Not that Texas is afraid of it. Texas would slot in even with Bama in the west. The only program the Aggies would be favored over would be Miss State.

        • eapg says:

          The academic thing is real for the academics, the athletic challenge is real for Mack Brown and the athletic department. Texas is not going to waltz into the SEC championship game in Atlanta, and they know it. A&M can afford to go to the SEC, because it doesn’t really matter what conference for them at this point, they’re trying to build towards relevance. Texas has a great deal to lose in that department, the fan support is not automatic through the down times, the gear sales to every low pants teenage frontrunner out there disappears in favor of the next perceived winner, autorecruiting takes a hit proportional to SEC hits in the loss column added, etc.

          And Texas will never sniff running the SEC show.

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          Bingo! Super D, we have a winner. The UTx academics argument has always been a red herring. In every scenario UTx has drawn up, its beat OU and get into a BCS game. Don’t any of you wonder why the Big Ten is never mentioned? The SEC and the Big Ten are too hard.

          • duffman says:


            I agree!!

            in the west UT has USC and OU to worry about. The Big 10 (with Nebraska) and the SEC are where the real football will be played with this current scenario.

            It is why I keep saying this whole thing is a chess match between delany and slive all along….

        • Bullet says:

          Academics is the primary reason. The “you’re judged by who you associate with” really applies to university presidents (per Frank-”think like a university president”)

          Academic standards for athletes is another issue. Doing it Nebraska’s way was a non-starter for UT and Tom Osborne has never gotten over that. UT and the B10, P10 and almost all remaining B12 schools share common values on that. SEC doesn’t.

          If Mack Brown brought in players who committed armed robbery, he would have a hard time holding on to his job. Lane Kiffin was worshipped at Tennessee until the day he left for USC.

          It can be debated whether its really true or not, but the perception is that the cheating in the SEC in recruiting is vastly worse than anywhere else. For UT, been there, done that. For those who don’t remember or haven’t read it, all SWC schools except Rice and Arkansas got on probation in the closing years. SMU, TCU and A&M all got caught paying their players.

    • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

      here;s the link for the Texas House Committee on Higher Education video stream:

    • Playoffs Now! says:

      Apparently all the small schools will have representatives here as well and the guy running things is an SMU guy.

      Undergrad at OK Christian U., law degree from SMU. Dan Branch is a rare bright spot, a poltician who is both clean and effective. Wed’s hearing may turn into a circus, but it won’t be because of Dan Branch.

    • OnWis says:

      I think the Big Ten Network should broadcast the circus since the LSN obviously is unable to at this time.

  98. Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

    Found this to be pretty funny:

    So TAMU’s Indepedence Bowl level fball program may hold the key to whether KU’s national title hoops program ends up in Pac10 or Mtn West

    From Stewart Mandel with Sports Illustrated Twitter, from Sunday Night.

    • doogie says:

      If Texas, et al go to Pac10, and aTm goes to SEC, then “sources” say Kansas has edge on Utah.

      New B12: Uh, anybody home?

      Mizzou – maybe Big 10 as 16th team, maybe SEC with aTm. Will be a long, long, long wait.

      K-state, I-state, Baylor – C-USA or Mountain West…hmm.

  99. Midwest Aggie says:

    Chip Brown is flip-flopping —

    Quote: My sources say Texas is committed to coming to the table with the 10 remaining B12 schools to see if there’s consensus for the Beebe plan.

    So they are about to blue-falcon their partners-in-crime. I would imagine Oklahoma is not too pleased with this development. Texas A&M may make them pay out of the nose for this to see how much they want to be in the Big12.

    Of course it could all be manueverings by Texas to shift the blame for the demise of the Big12 on someone else than themselves (typical). Of course news reports for the last two days on ESPN have been “Immenent departure to the PAC10 by Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State.”

    • Patrick says:

      Chip was interesting two weeks ago, but seeing right through his tweets makes them laughable.

      He is the Texas version of Joseph Goebbels…
      1)Completely out of touch with reality
      2)Nothing is ever UT’s fault
      3)Everyone else is too blame
      4)Promote the solution that makes Texas look the best and make them the most money.

      I hope like hell that A&M and OU tell UT to stuff it. Why should these other schools “do as they are told” and bow down to UT’s whims. Texas keeps spinning that Nebraska left and killed the Big 12, but if Texas would have given up or shared the LSN (or stopped blocking a Big 12 network, or worked together with the other schools in conference), Nebraska would have stayed. It’s a disfunctional relationship. A&M and OU have already stated that they would not stick around for a Texas with a LSN that only UT profits from and controls. Baylor and Iowa State may have no other choice, but every school with a choice will leave that as fast as possible.

      All for one, and all for one again. Screw that.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        How about Baghdad Bob instead.

      • Patrick says:

        Bagdad Bob works just as well.

        Who’s the propaganda minister for North Korea? Maybe they could hire Chip?

      • Playoffs Now! says:

        How is that any different than your twisting every post into an anti-TX rant (other than he has sources and did get one major scoop?)

        We get it, TX ate your homework.

        • Patrick says:

          Through most of this process I was for Texas. I still think that this is all a power play to shake themselves loose from the Big 12 baggage and lay blame on everyone else, so they end up in the Big 10.

          Overall, I don’t give a damn about Texas or where they end up. Their behavior, and Chip Browns propaganda, is obvious to everyone….. except the UT fans.

      • MIRuss says:

        Yep – and if you believe Joe Schad, he’s reporting that Texas will be able to keep the TLN alive and well in the Pac 10, something the Big 10 just won’t do….

        I am still finding it hard to believe that all members of the Pac 10 will vote this way and allow all four teams (Texas, Tech, Oklahoma and Okie State) in…I still believe that it’s all a smokescreen for UT to get into the Big 10, without Tech and the other baggage.

        • @Russ: Aren’t you talking out of both sides of your mouth? If the Big 10 will never allow then to keep the TLN alive (and this is their goal), then why are they doing all of this just to get into the B10? Am I missing someting?

      • Bullet says:

        So you believe Pearlman’s spin????

        He knew giving LSN up was a non-starter and probably wouldn’t have stayed if they did. B10 had a better deal for Nebraska no matter what and he wisely took it.

    • willarm1 says:

      Does Texas really care that much about blame? Or r they trying to get the Pac 10 to budge on something?

      • Bullet says:

        If UT is as arrogant as everyone says, Powers, et. al. wouldn’t care about blame. After all, We’re Texas!

        Maybe they are really just trying to figure out the best deal for the next 30 years in a one week period?

        Does it seem logical to anyone for the schools to call a time out? Hey, lets think about this for 30 days. I think Scott is wisely pushing it quickly before alternatives, road blocks and second thoughts pop up.

  100. DC says:

    Does anyone know whats going on with Purple Book Cat over @ Wildcat report and the “Change of Heart”?

    • Hank says:

      no. he’s been silent on the topic. apparently he is still posting on the premium board but I haven’t heard mention of any expansion related post since the Change of Heart post.

      • zeek says:

        I think the Big Ten has gotten what it wanted.

        Now we just have to see if Texas/A&M can come to some kind of agreement or whether more dominoes start falling.

        • zeek says:

          And by that I mean that expansion may be on ice if the Big 12 is saved.

          No reason why we can’t integrate Nebraska and then revisit expansion in 2014-2015 before TV contract negotiations…

          That would also let Nebraska have time to become a fully equal financial partner, so it is easy to add new schools and start them with their own buy in formulas.

        • wyzerman says:

          This stuff at Texas has all the hallmarks of Texas negotiating with itself. I think it is becoming clear the University administration wants to go where the academics are improved and the Athletic Dept wants to go where they think they’ll do best and each side is trying to make the other’s politically impossible. That’s likely why the Pac Ten took the lead over the Big Ten (besides Powers personal connection): because it throws a big bone to the athletic dept that the Big Ten does not. Likewise, the Athletic dept is trying to counter that by making the Big 12 look financially better and getting the politicos involved (why should we leave and look like the bad guys when we get great money anyway and control things)? It’s not a negotiating strategy to play suitors off against one another or give Texas a scapegoat. It’s about winning an internal power struggle.

          Right now the balance must be tipping to the Athletic department which is why we had the tweet that a decision is likely to be taken Tuesday and the legislature was a non-factor (i.e., Powers needs to move quickly).

          Powers can’t take Texas to the Pac Ten politically if it looks like he is harming Texas football even if it is better in the long run for the University.
          (of course, it could also be designed to look like an internal power struggle to create negotiation leverage but I am more inclined to think it is a real struggle – in the end, it probably doesn’t matter).

          If this is the case, is there any way the Big Ten could “save the day”? In other words, provide the academic upside and “preserve Texas football”? That would require A&M going to the SEC regardless.But it likely requires more. I agree with the proposition the the Big Ten culturally requires equality. Makes it difficult to concieve oif what else might be offered. (Texas can still play Oklahoma regardless.)

    • Playoffs Now! says:

      Does anyone know whats going on with Purple Book Cat over @ Wildcat report and the “Change of Heart”?

      A poster over there has suggested elsewhere that he got a ‘cease and desist’ message.

      And then there is this, from someone with access to the paid side. Excerpts:

      Big10 also looking at a Florida Team

      “…I’m interested in knowing which florida team is being looked at…

      …At any rate, don’t look for the Big10 to add any midwest schools other than Notre Dame. Missouri may squeek in if all of the above falters and if the Big10 makes a quick move. Texas would be on my dream team along with A&M but I think those options are off the table since the Big10 didn’t give Texas the package it wanted [only play 7 big10 games a year]. At any rate, these conferences are in a feeding frenzy and it’s going to be a game of the last man standing. Some conferences are going to go away is my bet. Disclaimer: all of the above should be taken as opinion only and thirdhand hearsay.”

      • zeek says:

        There’s only two Florida teams that could be looked at, UF and Miami.

        But why in the world do we want to turn Miami into another Boston College. Where would the rivalries be (although I guess Nebraska and Notre Dame could have good rivalries with Miami), but still, I’m just not seeing this as being a good thing in the long term.

        As much as South Florida is like a northern transplant, Miami is a much smaller school than the Big Ten universities; it’s Notre Dame-sized. Unless Miami is joining with Notre Dame, I don’t see it…

        And as for University of Florida, sure it’s another University of Texas (top notch academics/athletics, whatever you want), but why in the world would they leave the SEC…

      • Phizzy says:

        The “change of heart” was a change in heart on the part of the Big Ten regarding PBC’s leaking of information. Apparently, according to PBC, in the past he was given approval to post information regarding the Big Ten’s expansion plans and where they were in the process. However, a few days ago, he received a “cease and desist” letter from the Big Ten, via e-mail.

    • Phizzy says:

      See my post above…

  101. Brian says:

    Frank, I’m afraid you’re dating yourself here writing “Pitt used to be considered Penn State’s equal not all that long ago”. Would you believe it has been thirty plus years and then only for a short period in the late 70s/early 80s? Joe Paterno holds a 23-7-1 record against Pitt.

  102. Bamatab says:

    Tell me if you see a resemblance in these two pictures?

    And to all of the UT fans on this bored, I’m kidding. Well I’m kind of kidding, UT is kind of looking somewhat douchey right now.

    • Huskerhydes says:

      +2 on that one. Sending to all my neighbors here in Austin, Tx

    • duffman says:



      if A&M is SEC bound, It will be the new A&M flag at every SEC game on National TV.

    • Michael in Indy says:

      Haven’t looked at it yet. Let me guess… it’s a picture of the Longhorn photo compared to a picture of female anatomy. Let’s see how predictable this is…

      • Michael in Indy says:

        Ding ding ding!

        I think everyone’s seen that one, Bamatab, and I’ve hardly ever even set foot in a Big 12 state.

        • Bamatab says:

          Sorry Michael, I’m not up on me Big 12 trash talking/posting. You have to admit though that it fits the recent developements.

  103. Big Ten Jeff says:

    The Big Ten is apparently not even on the politicos’ radar. That’s pretty objective evidence about what is and isn’t an option.

    [College football -- and college athletics in general -- will get the full attention of the higher education committee of the Texas House of Representatives on Wednesday morning. That meeting, thanks to a five-day public-notice law, will come a day after the Texas and Texas Tech boards of regents meet to discuss whether their respective schools should stay in the Big 12 or leave for the Pac-10. While some believe the regents will vote on moves Tuesday, Branch, the chair of the higher education committee, believes the schools will wait until after Wednesday's hearing.
    "To make a final decision before Wednesday," Branch said, "would not be wise."
    Branch said the chief executives of Texas (Bill Powers), Texas A&M (R. Bowen Loftin) and Texas Tech (Guy Bailey) already have accepted their invitations to testify before the committee. Branch also hopes to have representatives from Baylor, Rice, Southern Methodist, TCU, Houston, North Texas and UTEP. Branch also has invited several economists as well as the commissioners of the Pac-10, SEC, Big 12, Mountain West and Conference USA.]

  104. Huskerhydes says:

    So if Texas “saves” the big 12 I think we will see some name changes.

    University of TX at Iowa State
    University of TX at Kansas
    University of TX at Kansas State
    University of TX at Oklahoma State
    University of You’re my Bitch at Oklahoma
    Baylor – cause even UT doesn’t want-em

    • duffman says:


      a) welcome to the conference

      b) maybe the best post yet!

      • Huskerhydes says:

        a) Thank you – Looking forward to 2011
        b) It just seemed obvious, they would be completely selling thier souls to UT to keep the conference together so you might as well just go with it all the way.

        • zeek says:

          I think we’re all looking forward to an infusion of new blood from Nebraska. We do tend to have a somewhat staid league, although it does work.

          Hopefully, Nebraska can shake things up and kick some schools in the rear and get their football programs gunning (I’m looking at you Michigan).

          • StvInILL says:

            Nebraska also has to be, well, NEBRASKA. We lose some strength because Michigan is down now 3 years. I hope for Michigan’s sake that Rich Rod is the man and they are not looking again after next year. Things were way too easy down at LSU for Les Miles to part. Or perhaps is Jim Harbough the future?

  105. Michael in Indy says:

    I have a couple of question about the Big 12.

    Why isn’t the league considering adding BYU and/or USF? BYU would bring superior TV ratings to Colorado’s and thus a greater bump in TV revenue than a Big 12 w/ Colorado. USF is by no means a solid replacement for Nebraska, but with the Bulls, the Big 12 could take away the Big East’s ABC appearances on Saturdays in recruit-rich, population-growing Tampa, and perhaps Orlando.

    Basically, would an addition of BYU and/or USF make the Big 12 better off than it would as a 10-team league?

    Secondly, does the Big 12 have any chance at survival at all if A&M hightails to the SEC?

    • Hank says:

      step 1 survive
      step 2 breath again
      step 3 Iowa State and Missouri get clean underwear
      step 4 consider future options

  106. Hank says:

    Chip Brown on twitter

    Texas stands to make between $20 mil and $25 mil per yr under a proposed new TV pkg presented by Dan Beebe, plus UT’s own network.

    • duffman says:


      but notice, it does not say what the “siblings” will earn. Still UT centric to the end….

    • zeek says:

      While this is all nice in theory, I have to wonder how firm Beebe’s numbers are.

      Losing Nebraska/Colorado means you also lose the Big 12 CCG.

      Is ESPN really willing to bid up the Big 12-2 contract like Fox bid up the ACC contract?

      Is Fox not going to bargain very hard against the Big 12 without the Colorado markets in the footprint (even if no one was watching apparently) and Nebraska which was the only national football brand north of Oklahoma, and probably had better pull on the coasts than Oklahoma and A&M…?

      Yes, it may all come together, but these numbers seem highly optimistic for a league that just lost a big market (in theory) and a national brand…

      • SH says:

        Well, we can see how this theory plays out. BTW, when does B10′s contract with ESPN/ABC come up again? Can the renegotiate now? Just curious.

        • zeek says:

          I am actually very confused as to that fact.

          For some reason, I thought the Big Ten had a renegotiation clause (because we obviously had 11 schools and were always trying to chase ND, so why sign a contract that wouldn’t be renegotiated up when a 12th joins…).

          I think it’s a 10 year contract, so we renegotiate it in the beginning of 2016.

          (I think it went into effect in 2007).

      • Hank says:

        I have no doubt Dan’s numbers are as firm as Middle East peace prospects.

      • wyzerman says:

        If you lose A&M to the SEC(likely, I think) and have a 9 team round robin (8 CGs, 4 OOGs) it becomes pretty easy to move the Oklahoma game to the first Saturday in December every year to be a “virtual” CCG. In most years all the implications of a CCG, but without scheduling an additional stumbling block. A&M is worth more to the SEC than it is to Texas with LSN; LSN already has the Texas market.

    • Big Ten Jeff says:

      Jeez… if it was this easy, everyone would be doing it. Think about it, less than half the BCS teams are getting a third of that, and that’s more than twice was Texas was already getting, but he can produce that after thinking about it for two days. Just like that. Just cuz Beebe says so. Me thinks this guy is full of cattle dung futures…

    • Marc V says:

      *cough, cough [bullshit] cough, cough*

  107. Hank says:

    Thamel NYT: Big 12 AD confirms to the NY Times that Texas is on cusp of committing to Big 12. He said, “The musical chairs will stop.

  108. duffman says:


    “Yes, there’s power, but it’s like being the captain of the Titanic. A&M in SEC and Neb are going to make more TV $ than UT”

    great twitter!

    • @duffman – Thanks! I can’t for the life of me understand why Texas wants to hold this clusterf**k together. Being master of its own domain is only worth it if the domain actually has value.

      • Playoffs Now! says:

        Because attempting to hold it together until at least Wed. afternoon might be wise. What Big Ten Jeff found and posted up thread:

        While some believe the regents will vote on moves Tuesday, Branch, the chair of the higher education committee, believes the schools will wait until after Wednesday’s hearing.

        “To make a final decision before Wednesday,” Branch said, “would not be wise.”

        Branch said the chief executives of Texas (Bill Powers), Texas A&M (R. Bowen Loftin) and Texas Tech (Guy Bailey) already have accepted their invitations to testify before the committee. Branch also hopes to have representatives from Baylor, Rice, Southern Methodist, TCU, Houston, North Texas and UTEP. Branch also has invited several economists as well as the commissioners of the Pac-10, SEC, Big 12, Mountain West and Conference USA.]

        Also note which commissioner hasn’t been invited (that we know of.)

      • Phizzy says:

        It seems that Texas just can’t let go of the dream (LSN).

      • Mike B says:

        Frank, isn’t it obvious? If one uses “Beebe Math”, Texas A&M exiting the Big 12 only further enhances revenue per school. $30 Million in exit fees split 9 ways; A&M, like Colorado was an “underperformer”, etc.

        Heck, Beebe could probably get Texas up to $30 Million a year if Oklahoma leaves. :-)

      • zeek says:

        Frank, but we all know how humans are.

        If me and my neighbor are both earning $200k a year, but I could get a job with the Pac-10 earning $400k, while my neighbor takes $500k with the SEC, I’ll choose to drag my neighbor back with me to the job that makes $200k…

        I don’t think Texas wants A&M going to the SEC and becoming financially better off as well as the recruiting/giving SEC markets aspect of it. The SEC will rapidly outdistance the Pac-16 if it gets A&M in my mind… (not that it won’t be ahead anyways even if A&M goes west)…

      • Bullet says:

        What is anyone hearing about the value of the B10+1+1?

        Texas isn’t staying unless they are convinced there is value. Don’t have much faith in Chris Brown’s numbers, but if you accept those and Colorado was worth less than 1/12th and UNL only a little more, a huge % of the value is in UT. CU had to be #5 in the league in value and UNL #3 or #4.

      • wyzerman says:

        I’m not sure UT does, but I think the UT athletic department does because they put value on winning & BCS bowls – isn’t their domain bigger, aren’t their salaries bigger, etc, when they win? They are prevailing. No way the average Texan wants UT in the Pac Ten or Big Ten even if it is better off there. The Athletic dept is making it impossible for Powers to leave. If they can say we can make more tomorrow than we can make day one elsewhere, that gives them the political cover they need to stay in the Big 12 remnant. Yes, not optimal for UT. But perhaps it is optimal for the people running the Athletic department.

        • Bullet says:

          Not really. Dodds is the best AD in the country in generating $. Now winning helps generate $, but that isn’t all there is to it. Powers and Dodds may not see eye to eye, but if there is a power struggle, it involves the board of regents. And that wouldn’t be unusual at UT. Dodds was going to retire and got renewed to help see UT through. He has stayed as AD for all these years because 1) he generated $; 2)did a great job influencing NCAA; and 3) he always backed the Presidents.

          For those who don’t know Dodds’ background, he went to Kansas St. and was track coach and AD there before coming to Texas.

      • ezdozen says:

        Maybe Texas wants to be one of the last ones to leave the Big 12. Not only will it end up at a desired destination, but pocket a fair share of all the exit fees too.

        And, look, there’s a nickel in the ground over there….

  109. Bamatab says:

    Redhawk or any other OU fans,

    Is UT’s LSN still a deal breaker for OU? I know that at one time OU was dead set against it. Do you think that they would now agree to allow UT to have it? I’m just trying to figure out what kind of weight I should give this chance for the Big 12-lite rival.

    I’d also like to here from Aggie fans as well on this subject.

    • Bullet says:

      Why should it be a deal breaker if you look at it logically instead of emotionally? Any school in the country can now do it except Big 10 schools. Texas can do it in the B12-2 or quite possibly do it somewhere else. They certainly could do it in SEC. Would you rather them do it somewhere else?

      • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

        it’s a deal breaker, in the fact that UT’s would have the potential to be SO much bigger than anyone else’s and giving UT a big money advantage.

        I find it interesting that today, Chip Brown’s tweet only had BevoTV at 5 million per year. This seems like, a “hey, stay with me…we won’t REALLY be making $20 on our own” lie.

        I know OU would like to have more games on locally of their own. I know OU is the next biggest fish when it comes to the local TV stuff. But is the difference TOO much to swallow? I’d say yes

        @Bamatab – I really think the issue for OU is travel, and geogrophy and what really is a conference.

        Is this Pac-10 with us being the “Texas Bitches” division really a long term conference? Or will it break up the next time a TV contract expires?

        If the SEC would take Okla. St…OU would be in the SEC tonight.

      • Bamatab says:

        Bullet, the way that the current SEC contract is structured, the only live football games that a school can have on their own networks are the ones that are not divided up among CBS and the ESPN channels. For Bama last year, that was only 1 game (and I believe that went for all the rest of the SEC team (Alan can correct me if I’m wrong on that)). Every other game was shown on CBS or the ESPN channels (or on ABC in the case of the VT game).

        From what I understand, that is not UT’s plan. If they are planning on making the type of money that is being claimed off of the LSN, then I would think that they would have to show multiple live football games on it (maybe 4 or more). I think that is the hang up. One of the big 12 guys can correct me if I’m wrong, but can’t the Big 12 teams already show games on PPV or a college type network if it isn’t picked up by one of the other tv networks? But what UT seems to be planning is a step or two above this from what I can gather. Am I mistaken on this?

        • Daniel "Redhawk" Dayton says:

          Right now the way the Big 12 is set up is their TV contacts get first pick, ABC, ESPN, Fox Regional. IF a game isn’t selected for/by any of the contracted outlets, the team can then put it on PPV or it’s own network.

          For the record, OU raked it in at $30 a TV for Idaho State and Chattanooga PPV’s over the last 2 years.

          But I think UT’s plan revolves around “Rebroadcast” rights as well.

        • Bullet says:

          B12 has same deal as SEC. LSN would take the leftovers which are now on PPV.

          I have a hard time understanding why this is worth so much to show Louisiana-Monroe or Wyoming and the non-revenue sports, but the experts seem to believe it is. Of course, I’ve also seen its value estimated from $3 million to $40 million just in the last 2 days.

          All makes me wonder if all of these networks, LSN, BTN, are just another internet bubble. The latest fad, that will be worth 1/10th as much in 5 years.

    • AggieFrank says:

      100% deal breaker

  110. SuperD says:

    I guess I’m having a tough time understanding Texas’s negotiating strategy.

    They are fully committed to try and keep the Big 12 together, but are not willing to budge on a single concession to the other schools? Nebraska came back to the table late and was willing to consider staying if concessions were made.

    Did Texas underestimate the resentment over these points, or were they underestimating the ability and willingness of North schools with options to move despite the penalties? I’m willing to bet they expected Colorado to move because anyone with half a brain understands how much better a fit the PAC is for them, but I think they were shocked that NU was willing to move.

    Even now Beebe’s revenue projections are all including the LSN. Is the marginal utility on that extra money really more important than keeping the other advantages of the Big 12 when you already make more money than any other school by a significant margin?

    • SH says:

      I simply see UT as having too many decisions. As you say Colo really had no decision to make. Stay in dying conference or go to Pac 10 where it seemed like a great fit. No real decision to make. Same for Neb. Stay with dying conference or go to the top conference (however you look at it it is either top or #2) in the country with states that border you. No real decision to make.

      UT on the other hand has lots of options. Some options involve other Texas schools. They are just weighed down by having too many decisions. The old Decision Paradox. Paralysis by analysis. Whatever you want to call it.

      Even A&M has less decisions though they are in the same boat. There decision is stay with UT or go to SEC.

      Maybe UT underestimated certain things and overestimated others, but at the end of the day they just had too many options available, which allowed every different agenda to be placed on the table.

      • zeek says:

        I think it’s more a function of UT trying to hold the ship together while facing wars on three fronts.

        Everyone wants a piece of the Big 12. The Big Ten was always going to focus on Nebraska, the SEC was always going to focus on A&M, and the Pac-10 was always going to focus on Colorado.

        Knowing that, what would Texas do? They have to choose to join one of the three conferences raiding the Big 12, or try to hold A&M and Nebraska with them.

        They failed at holding Nebraska with them. They chose to go to the Pac-10 as a way of giving Nebraska an ultimatum and because the Pac-10 essentially offered to give them control of 1/2 of the league, which the SEC and Big Ten wouldn’t.

        But now, A&M is threatening to bolt as well.

        UT may be the strongest school in college sports individually, but it would never be able to completely hold on to its own league while being surrounded by three much stronger conferences (whether by actual strength due to Big Ten/SEC $ or the Pac-10′s regionality making it not a threat of being poached)…

        • Huskerhydes says:

          If UT truly wanted to keep the conference alive with NU they could have done it, but not on thier terms. I don’t doubt that if UT had been willing to assign thier sports media rights to the conference for the long term and I mean 20+ years, NU would have stuck.

          UT wants it all on thier terms and thier terms only. Now they got called by NU and have a less favorable situation because of it.

          They can still probably make great money if they stick in the Big 12 and if they stay I don’t see any way A&M can leave. UT will have all the conference $$ and nothing the other schools can say, since they “Saved” the big 12.

          At this point I don’t think that the LSN becomes as profitable as projected because ABC/ESPN will be televising all the UT games – what other conference games will trump them. That puts more of the conference share of the tv money split into UT’s pocket and creates even more financial inequality.

          I really think only OU has the ability to force the issue and move on thier own, but they have already stated that they will deep throat UT all the way to the bank.

      • Bullet says:

        As for Colorado, I think everyone knew they were going. I’ve read they voted for B12 over P10 5-4 back in ’94 and 3 of those B12 regents terms ended within months of the vote. I had a lot of discussions with a well connected CU fan in the late 90s. They wanted to move to P10 then, but P10 wasn’t interested w/o UT. That’s Texas, not Utah. Utah wasn’t on the radar then, so CU would have to go alone, and as B10 fans know, 11 is a lousy number.

        • SH says:

          I don’t think 11 schools hurt teh big 10 at all. Ha ha, you call yourselves the big 10, but have 11 – can’t count. Hey you can’t have a title game, stupid. Other than hearing those two thoughts, what was the harm in only having 11? As the BCS era got off the ground, not having a title game was probably a blessing. It only increased the value of one of the B10′s primary asset – the Mich/OSU game.

          • Bullet says:

            Didn’t increase the value of Mich/OSU. NW could get a schedule that skipped both of those and win the conference. Iowa and Michigan could skip each other and sail through undefeated. There was a very mediocre Purdue team a few years back that only needed an upset of PSU to win the B10 because they didn’t have UM/OSU on the schedule. And as for basketball odd numbers are always bad.

            Plus you only need one and you can get the $ from a championship game.

    • zeek says:

      There is no negotiating strategy other than to issue ultimatums or try to box in other actors.

      But that’s what any entity will do if it is internally divided.

      That “house divided” picture of Texas/A&M aptly describes the situation within Texas as well. Powers and the academics want to join the academic institutions of the west coast. Dodds, Brown, and co. really preferred the Big 12 setup to the Pac-16, and they probably prefer to stay anyways.

      If you’re Dodds or Brown, you remove the CCG as an obstacle to getting to the BCSNC, and geographically it does make the most sense for all sports.

      Texas is negotiating trying to show externally a united front, while internally Powers tried to drag everyone along to the Pac-16. A&M’s SEC gambit changes the equation.

      All of a sudden, A&M will soon be earning much more in TV money than Texas, depending on how much CBS/ESPN value A&M’s pull on Texas’ markets. The Pac-16 probably won’t be as lucrative as the SEC, etc.

      SuperD, they want the LSN because they can. And eventually they may be earning as much as $10-15M per year from that effort alone depending on Texas’ growth in the future.

      If they hitch that to a conference, they have to split most of their markets many ways…

      • wyzerman says:

        Of course by damaging the Pac Ten offer the A&M move to the SEC leaves a tiny opening for the Big Ten as a compromise. But this requires that Powers has something else he can come back with to essentially balance but not tip the scales. Its hard to imagine what that could be. Right now, the Athletic department seems to be winning. The only other Big Ten option is to sweeten the pot for Texas athletically, and I don’t see it happening (nor do I think it is in the best interest of the “small company”, as Delany called it, over the long term).

        • PensfaninLAexile says:

          The Wyz –

          Your original comment on this matter was correct. Texas is split internally and is working its way to a consensus — or racing the clock to get enough people on board with their eventual decision. It may be that events are overtaking them and they may be forced to do something important elements don’t want (PAC-10).

          That’s more bad news for the a Super PAC — the most important added school is not fully committed to the conference. Trading one dysfunctional situation for another.

          • SH says:

            They are only split, because they have so many options. It is nice to have all those options, but it allows for outside pressures to influence you. Neb had no splits because it was Option 1 v. 2 and 1 was rising and 2 was sinking.

  111. duffman says:

    I will preface this with money is in control, not academics!

    that said I am UNC with a 60,000 seat stadium and an average football team….

    now look at….

    wake .. 30,000 + seats (in my backyard)
    duke .. 34,000 + seats (in my backyard)

    now look at ….

    UK .. 70,000 + seats (with a RABID fan base that travels and spends money on food, and hotels when they come to town)

    UT .. 100,000 + seats (with a RABID fan base that travels and spends money on food, and hotels when they come to town)

    now I am a college president and / or local chamber of commerce

    if money drive the bus, tell me that this does not mean BIG $$, and keep in mind UNC / UK would be roughly equal teams and UNC / UT would favor UT.

    But here is the kicker, if UNC loses to UK or UT in football they can say wait till basketball season!!!!

    If you do not understand how this works, you can not understand why UK is content with a crappy football product, as is keeps the “bragging” rights going back and forth between the sports. IU used to have a similar relationship with UK that I can easily see UNC establishing. If UNC gives up Duke in football, and UK gives up UL in football I can see very easily how the $$ gets much bigger, much quicker.

    And I am not that smart.. just follow the money!

    • zeek says:

      Sure, but then the president/chancellor has to go and explain to the academics and boosters (alumni who view themselves as academically elite) on why they made such a decision.

      • duffman says:


        It goes like this..

        Dear Alumni & Boosters,

        We being the smartest of the 2 have figured out a way to get rich while cutting the balls off of our hated rivals Duke. We may have to hold our nose a bit in academics, but we will still be around Vandy, UF, UGA, and some pretty decent schools. In return we can move on up the money chart, attract bigger corporate football sponsorship, and see a dream come true in the process. We will leave Duke behind in a “minor” conference like Kansas just got in the Big 12 “implosion”. Serves those damned Blues Devils right for bringing that rat faced coach into our world. We are the basketball royalty before that putz came along.


        Roy Williams
        Erskine Bowles
        Dick Baddour

        (this is how I can see it)

        Then delaney offers MD and UVA an invite

        after that delany offers Rutgers and ND

        • zeek says:

          No because no president of UNC or Duke would ever submit such a letter.

          In fact, they’d first apply to the Big Ten (or in Duke’s case, the Ivy League and Big Ten).

          They’d probably propose a Big Ten-ACC merger.

          • duffman says:


            who butters the ACC bread?


            now tell me they dismiss the SEC if push comes to shove?

            I have listened to everybody on this board, and been open to new thoughts when they appear to have a logical basis of support. If I did not, I am just the French in WWII confidant that my “line” is SO superior, that the Germans will never attack.

            and how did that work out for the French? I am smart enough to study history so as not to repeat it.

          • zeek says:

            They dismiss it because they’re positioned like Great Britain and not Poland.

            Big 12 = Poland (sandwiched between multiple powers.

            ACC = Great Britain (on the periphery of the action, might be strong enough to stay separated).

          • Hu Man says:


            You keep talking about ESPN and Fox with the ACC and SEC, but the SEC’s money is from ESPN and CBS. First, none of the three networks alone would want to add value to a league unless it has all of its rights. Second, as powerful as the media are they would not want to be brought in front of congress for messing with higher education.

          • duffman says:


            they are not England, no water to breach.

            the big 12 had 3 lions (Big 10, Pac 10, and SEC)

            the ACC has 2 lions (Big 10, SEC) and both have an easy reach to the ACC.

            The Big 10 comes down from the North and the the SEC comes up from the South. It is called a pincer movement, and works really good in battle. Your logic grows weaker and weaker, and you have no concrete answer like bama, alan, vincent, FLP, and others who have long history and direct knowledge of the actual situation at hand.

            i am not saying I am right or wrong, I am allowing for “what if” and trying to find those with better knowledge to flesh out an argument or theory. I said early on Franks arguments made sense and I changed to adapt based on theories proposed. I have heard many say they view the Big 10 as “snooty” or “snobby”. My goal is to disarm their argument by showing this is not the case. If I appear “snooty’ I have already lost, If I engage and adapt I make the Big 10 show (by action) that we are not what others say we are.


          • zeek says:

            Your post is worth next to nothing.

            You haven’t disproven a single point that I’ve made in this entire thread.

            Nice try though…

          • duffman says:


            a) you said it could not be presented to the boosters and alumni.

            I responded with a letter (albeit tongue and cheek to show you how it could).

            b) you said the Big 10 and ACC would merge.

            1) I pointed out media alliances did not match.

            2) I am pointing out now that merging both WOULD put you before congress.

            c) I offered france, you countered with england.

            In truth (from someone growing up at the feet of those who served in the war) Hitler was an idiot, who did not finish of England before going after russia (ie no russia, and we would all be speaking german now).

            in this conversation I have argued that the big 12 shared 3 predators. The ACC shared 2. The BE had only 1. By action the Big 12 was most vulnerable, and the BE the least (as they held the least value). This thinking has not changed, and so far the Big 12 went first, so the ACC should be next.

            You on the other hand have offered no supporting evidence via your personal and direct knowledge. If Frank wishes to check my backstory he has my email.

    • SH says:

      Let’s also add BRAND power to the mix. Schools should be looking for brands, because brands lead to $$. That is why I believe that UNC and Kansas are desirable schools for any conference, certainly over the likes of Mizzou or Va Tech. They have brand names that resonate nationally. Thinking of it this way, this may be why Syracuse is better than Rutgers for the B10. (Note – I’m not saying the are, but there is no doubt, they have a better brand).

      If I’m an average viewer and I see a schedule with Mich v. Rutgers or Mich v. Syracuse, which looks more appealing? Unless Rutgers is ranked in the top 15, it is just a school in NJ. However, Syracuse has history, it has a great basketball program. Its a brand I (as a viewer) can relate too. Same with Kansas.

      • SH says:

        I guess I was saying they were. But there are other things to take into the equation. But Brand trumps state size in my opinion.

      • Hank says:

        I think you have to make a distinction, at least for now, between football and basketball brands. Kansas is a basketball brand among the best. but the revenue potential for basketball is already pretty maxed out and more focused towards the tournament than conference play. football brands are the focus of this excercise began there is a potential to increase revenue AND do it within the context of conference own vehicles.

        • SH says:

          Indeed you do. That is not my argument. The Nebrasks invite clearly showed this. But when you get to “2nd tier” candidates – those behind ND/UT/Neb – any brand is better than no brand. When you think of the SEC, you probably think of the football brands first, but then you think of KY – above Ole Miss, South Carolina, etc.

          Kansas has value over Mizzou not necessarily because of its basketball, but because there is an association with Kansas -which comes from basketball. (Maybe that isn’t necessarily true, but it is the argument I am trying to make). The same argument is made with Syracuse vis-a-vis Rutgers.

          Having brand power should be more of an asset than having no brand power. Mizzou/Rutgers have very little brand power. Does the brand power outweigh the other factors (states, population, TV sets)? If it brand power that was built primarily from football, the answer seems to be yes. If it is brand power primarily built from basketball we don’t know yet. However, it should be known that both Syracuse and Kansas offer some brand power that was somewhat (if very small) built from football. I mean two of the best running backs of all time went there.

    • Hu Man says:

      duffman, I agree money is in control, which is why academics are more important. Think alumni, research and endowments. The fact that the SEC only has two AAU schools and tier 3 institutes are huge negatives to UNC.
      If the ACC dissolved, the Big East is more likely for NC schools than SEC.

      • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

        Hu what? 2 of the 12 (17%) SEC schools are tier 3. 4 of the 8 (50%)Big East football schools are tier 3.

      • duffman says:

        Hu Man,

        I made this argument early on in a comparison between chess masters and bridge masters. the AAU is skewed to those who got in early (like some bridge masters that can not get out of their own way, but started playing at a young age and accumulated MASSIVE points over time). While I am not knocking it, I see inherent flaws (go back and look at what year each school got in).

        A chess master is based on play. You win you go up, you lose, you go down. Adaptation and skill is more valuable than time. Just an observation.

        As a fan of both games, I prefer a partner game like bridge (until I run into someone with MASSIVE points, and no skill). By nature tho, I am a team player – that is why the Big 10 appeals to me as they share. So far texas has not shown that in a meaningful way, but I digress.

    • And all that extra SEC revenue will be used up in short order training to maintain athletic (read “football”) parity with UNC’s new free-spending SEC friends. So in the end, it’s really a wash. More athletic dept. money brought in, but more athletic dept. money spent. But in the process, the ‘Heels lessen by association the academic prestige they’ve spent decades cultivating.

      • PensfaninLAexile says:

        That’s the most amusing fallacy operating. All these schools think they’re getting some huge windfall, when in fact it’s all going to be sucked up by higher AD expenditures. Only the few schools at the absolute top of the food chain (Texas, ND) will actually make a “profit” out of this game of musical chairs.

        Reality check story from Bloomberg:

        • Hope everyone who thinks conference expansion is the secret to infinite riches reads that article. Repeating myself (almost ad nauseum, now) with Big State U’s tuition continuing it’s 4-8% annual increase and state budgets faceing structural deficits for the next decade or so, students and lawmakers are going to start questioning the continued subsidies to the toy depts of the universities. Joe College Student might not be as keen on gridiron success when he realizes a growing portion of his 6 figure debt went to pay for it.

          • zeek says:

            Conference expansion works a lot better for the haves moving to better have conferences than for the have nots moving to better have conferences.

            A rich athletics department like Nebraska adds large enough marginal value to the Big Ten, while not needing to increase expenditures to keep up with the Joneses.

            Obviously, one like Rutgers would need to increase expenditures even more than the increase in TV money to keep up.

            In reality, many universities should not be trying to keep up with the money race that is D1 sports…

          • A couple a blog posts ago, I suggested that schools like Iowa State and Syracuse (rich history–but where’s the money going to come from to replace the Carrier Dome in the next decade?) should see the realignment process as a signal to gracefully exit the football arms race and focus on less costly sports like basketball (or wrestling for ISU) A skilled marketing dept. could sell the recusal from big time football duties as said university wisely using its resources for the betterment of all students. Or some such.

          • zeek says:

            I saw that argument, and I agreed with the sentiment wholeheartedly.

            The problem is just that boosters are too proud to ever let that happen, and the boosters at the haves schools are too rich and powerful (and in many cases numerous) and keep raising the bar with the sheer $ they’re throwing at athletics departments.

          • SH says:

            Agree and agree. Especially in certain states. Texas and Florida are expanding, but they are growing and have more resources (as a state). They also have split loyalties which more easily allows for start up schools. The whole state won’t rally around one flag.

    • Richard says:

      You haven’t given a good reason for why UNC wouldn’t chose the Big10.

      1. Same money as SEC (give or take).
      2. Better academic reputation.
      3. Geography won’t be an argument if Delany’s smart, since I’d offer Maryland, Virginia, Duke, GTech, Miami, & maybe FSU along with UNC to go to a Big20 if I was him (ND would be the cherry on top if they come along).

      • duffman says:


        in my early argument 16 was the number

        under the gambit delany must choose UNC or ND to stay at 16. He must sacrifice one to get the other to stay at 16.

        I think 16 is a stopping point, as once a Big 3 member hits 17 congress WILL step in. None of the Big 3 wants that so 16 is the value point that keeps the 800 lb gorillia (US gov) at bay.

        Again, i could be wrong, but 16 is it (for now).

        • Richard says:

          Nah. It’s not as if the Big10 doesn’t have Congresspeople on its side as well (plus they can probably count on the Congress-critters in Pac16 states, since they’d want the option of taking in some MWC schools once they become more viable), so I don’t think there’s any logical reason for a conference to stop at 16, any more than there’s a logical reason for McDonalds to expand to 75 countries and then stop instead of expanding on in to 125 countries.

  112. StvInILL says:

    Big IIX just a Pawn in Mongo’s game of life?

    Exit queen, rook and bishop.
    Now what do ya do??? Texas says Play on!!!! ????

  113. M says:

    Dan Beebe tells it how it is:

    “Why could no one else figure out that I kicked out Nebraska and that other school to make more money for the rest of us?”

  114. bigredforever says:

    So Beebe can pull together an SEC like deal in a few days, but not over the last few years????

    Either he’s a used cars salesman or he was asleep on the job.

    • zeek says:

      If I’m a Husker, I’d be thankful to be in a conference run by Delany. I’m sure you’ve read Wetzel’s piece on how Delany totally played him: . Even though I do disagree with his characterization of Delany’s intent, it was clear that Beebe thought that just having Texas in the Big 12 was enough to make it all work.

    • Bullet says:

      In fairness to him, the current contract expires in 2012. Noone was planning on negotiating until next April. They were probably doing only very preliminary work. So he has to do it now or there’s no April. And until Friday, he didn’t know who was definitely jumping overboard.

    • SuperD says:

      What is A&M’s incentive to stay in this deal. Their AD has been one of the biggest opponents to the UT getting to have the the LSN. Now they’re perfectly content to stay for a few more million dollars even if it means UT is going to making 5 – 10 million more than them or even more over the long run. If they really have an SEC offer on the table that is pretty damn bad stewardship of their stakeholders interests, though I understand politics are an issue.

  115. SuperD says:

    Okay so are we about to find out how much the PAC 10 and Big 10 are colluding and whether they REALLY want to go to 16 schools. If you’re Delany and you’re trying to force a 16 school structure isn’t the play now to offer Mizzou and pull the rug out from the Big 12 sticking together? I know this limits your options a bit for going East though. The PAC could try the same thing with KU, but it might be a bit riskier and I don’t think KU can pull the trigger on that offer if there is a deal on the table that keeps KSU in a BCS conference, even if its just for a couple of years.

    • wyzerman says:

      Offering Missouri might just tilt things Powers’ way. The real way to do would be to offer Tech or better yet Oklahoma :).

      That won’t happen

  116. M says:

    RE ESPN/ABC contract

    Presumably, the Big Ten will attempt to get some sort of bump from ESPN for adding Nebraska. If this doesn’t work, what’s to stop the Big Ten from putting all the new inventory on BTN?

    I’m not sure this is the greatest welcome for Nebraska, but it would give a great boost to the BTN.

    • Hank says:

      fwiw I think that is how the contract works. ESPN/ABC gets a specified number of games each week and a slotting system of sorts that determines who gets first choice etc. all the rest of the games remain with the Big Ten Network. I think. so there would be no change in the number of games and probably no change in the fee. The Big Ten Network just ends up with a larger number of games. The only negotiating point would be that ESPN/ABC now has an enhanced pool to select from with Nebraska but I doubt they would want to keep Nebraska out of the pool. the more national tv audiences see games with Nebraska in the Big Ten the better.

      • StvInILL says:

        So are you saying Nebraska will be seen on the BT Network in the upcomeing season?

        • Hank says:

          not football. they don’t officially join til 2011 so all of that is for the 2011 season.

          but Delany did say that they were working with Nebraska and that other sports at Nebraska not covered by existing Big 12 arrangements could start appearing on the BTN. not football and probably not basketball. but track, wrestling, women’s volleyball, soccer etc. its a long year and there is a lot of that on the BTN. and soemthing that doesn’t get mentioned is the BTN is a great recruting tool for other sports. a woman’s volleyball player going to a Big Ten school knows that friends ad family back home will get lots of chances to see them play.

          • StvInILL says:

            Yeah that coverage is a really good recruiting tools for some of the sports that trail into late spring/summer when the student body may or may not support them.

        • Blood & Steel says:

          If they have a non-televised game, the BTN would be better than pay-per-view for all involved.

  117. zeek says:

    Let’s analyze the Big 12 contract in a simple context that works intuitively.

    There were 12 schools. Some had footprints, some had brands, some were there to be on the schedule.

    In order for the payouts to make sense, some schools had to pull more weight than other schools. The average payout of the Big 12 was around $9M (or whatever it was, let’s just assume $9M). These payouts were based on negotiations made a long time ago, so it is worth keeping that in mind, i.e. for Nebraska’s draw.

    These teams probably brought in less than the median (I’ll get to why I’m using median rather than average) by virtue of their being in the Big 12: Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech. The ordering of these schools doesn’t matter as much. In fact you could argue that you switch them out with any other school and the contract’s value wouldn’t change.

    The 7 “money making” schools are Texas, A&M, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Colorado.

    Based on what we know of the situation, clearly Texas brought in the lion share of the income followed by A&M/Oklahoma/Nebraska. Due to the redundancy of the A&M footprint due to Texas and Oklahoma sharing with Oklahoma State (even in a small context); I would posit that all three brought relatively similar value to the Big 12 based on their brand, especially since the negotiations were made only a few years after Nebraska’s run in the 90s.

    So what was/is the value here; I would go off of the notion that any of the lowest 5 could be replaced with any other school without hurting the contract (even D2 football programs).

    So the 100% allotment of value should go to the 7 schools that bring whatever markets/national brands that they can.

    For Beebe to argue that only 8-9% of the Big 12 is based on the value of Colorado/Nebraska is a joke.

    He’s arguing that Texas/A&M/Oklahoma/Missouri/Kansas bring in 91-92% of the value.

    His breakdown probably looks like:
    1) Texas: 65%
    2) Oklahoma: 10%
    3) A&M: 10% (obviously worth much much more to the SEC since it wouldn’t be redundant footprint-wise)
    4) Nebraska: 7%
    5) Kansas: 4%
    6) Missouri: 3%
    7) Colorado: 1%

    While, I’m sure that Texas brings a lot of value to the Big 12; I’m not sure it’s that much.

    Mine would probably look more like:
    1) Texas: 50%
    2) Oklahoma: 15%
    3) Nebraska: 15%
    4) A&M: 10%
    5) Kansas: 5%
    6) Missouri: 3%
    7) Colorado: 2%

    So the hit to the Big 12 would be more than double what Beebe thinks.

    And Nebraska’s value is probably lowered because of its exile in the Big 12 North, where it didn’t have as many yearly marquee matchups against Texas/A&M/Oklahoma as those three had with each other…

    I don’t know if this really helps the discussion, but I think that’s what went through Beebe’s mind.

    Either way, having Nebraska in a division with Michigan or Ohio State or Penn State and with Iowa/Wisconsin regardless, should increase its value dramatically.

    • StvInILL says:

      Reaklly good analysys there Zeek. You hammered home. So the Television value of a Big XII has changed dramatically. it could be one texas = nebraska and colorado roughly but throw in a texas A&M and its definately a loss.

      • Cliff's Notes says:

        What about the loss of the CCG? If the SEC CCG is ~$15M, then is the Big XII CCG worth at least $10-11M?

        Using Zeke’s number of $9M per school, then 12 X $9M is $108M for the conference. So losing a CCG is roughly a 10% loss to conference revenue. Or, roughly $1M lost to each school.

        So by expansion math, if 11+1=13, then perhaps 12-2=9.

    • allthatyoucantleavebehind says:

      Zeek, Are you on frank’s payroll (I know he has a nice sized staff at “Frank the Tank Enterprises”)???

      You’re overestimating the value of Texas.
      If you say that the value of the Big12 is/was 12…
      I’d say Texas equals 3 schools to the Big 12.
      OU and Nebraska 2 schools each.
      Texas A/M, Colorado, Kansas, Mizzou 1 school each.
      Baylor, ISU, KSU, Tech, OkSt 1 school combined.

      The current value of the Big 12 is 9….split among 10 teams. No one they add could help their value that much.

      You’ve way undervalued Colorado (Denver market is sizable, even with a slumping Buff program). Texas is a gem but with A/M and Tech in the conference also, there is no WAY they are worth 50% of the conference’s value.

      Like you said, everything changes if Texas and/or Texas A/M and/or Tech are in a conference by their lonesome.

      Texas A/M by itself in the SEC sees its value skyrocket to 2 teams value.

    • spartakles78 says:

      this was posted back in the earlier days of innocence in the FtT world…

  118. duffman says:

    I keep hearing arguments for this and that..

    Like Missouri, WVU, Clemson, etc to the SEC

    Now think like an alpha lion, do they eat the hooves first?

    NO! they go for the best parts first, that is WHY they are the alpha!

    If I am slive or delany, I am the alpha lion..

    I will go for the choice cuts first, as the hooves will always be there.

    When thinking what the Big 10 / SEC will do, just ask yourself is it a “choice” cut or a hoof….

    This is base leadership, not rocket science!

  119. Hangtime79 says:

    So another random thought. How bad does Scott want UT if aTm isn’t along for the ride?

    If he still wants them that bad, would it not be worth his time to fly to Lawrence tell them aTm’s spot is yours but you have to blow up the B12. Kansas still has the ability to throw a major monkey wrench in any chance of the B12 sticking together by asking for the moon.

    If your Kansas, which would you rather have?
    1. A “dying” conference
    2. A conference with more money and UT power basis that is diminished with revenue sharing.

    By asking for the moon, you may get it. If push the button and blow up the B12 then get to go to a more stable conference.

    • Hangtime79 says:

      Moon meaning no LSN, Revenue Sharing, and a 20-year commitment with big buyout clause.

    • zeek says:

      That’s an interesting outside-the-box gambit.

      But, there’s one problem: Kansas State. I’m pretty sure that if Texas and co. commit to the Big 12, but Kansas tries to topple the dominoes by going to the Pac-10, that Kansas politicos would explode and force them to stay.

      Plus, their chancellor is on the record as saying they’re looking at doing what’s best for both if they can…

      • zeek says:

        Plus, you saw how furious Brownback and Roberts were about Nebraska bolting.

        They’d bring down KU’s leadership if they were the domino that broke the Big 12.

      • duffman says:



        kansas: “you know that funding bill you have coming up?”

        k state: “sure”

        kansas: “you let us end run this conference thing, and we will not oppose your funding bill”

        k state: “ok”

    • duffman says:


      brilliant and ballsy play! Well said!

    • m (Ag) says:

      “So another random thought. How bad does Scott want UT if aTm isn’t along for the ride? ”

      Getting Kansas to blow up the conference is an interesting idea. But in this scenario I think A&M could come along.

      I think if the administrators at UT called up the administrators at A&M and said they should go to the Big 10 together, it would likely be accepted. It would be seen as compromise and not either school imposing its will on the other. The money would probably be better than the SEC and definitely better than the Pac 16. The travel would be worse than the SEC but still much better than the Pac 16. There would be comments about the ’3 yards and a cloud of dust’, but the common fan would come around quickly to the athletic pluses of being in a conference with OSU, PSU, Michigan, and Nebraska.

      I think UT leans toward the Pac 16 because it’s a compromise between the athletic department (which wants local schools and an easier schedule) and the administrators (which like the academic associations and realize keeping Texas Tech around would be good politics).

      So I think Kansas blowing up the conference would likely just make the Pac 16 that much more likely.

  120. Vincent says:

    Of course, another possibility is that the “little guys” (ISU, KSU, KU, MU) could call Texas’ bluff by accepting an offer to join the eight Big East football schools, leaving UT, TTU, OU and OSU no choice than to head to the Pac-10. (As for Baylor, if will have to sail its own way; that’s what you get when you were foisted upon this conference in the first place.)

    • zeek says:

      And make $3M a year as opposed to the $20M they make each year the next 2 based on exit fees in the Big 12?

      The Big 12 schools are stuck in a bind.

      • Bamatab says:

        I’m still very skeptical that the Big 12-lite schools would be able to secure a tv contract worth $15m each, much less $20m each. If they can, then I’ll believe it when I see it.

        • zeek says:

          I was talking about if the Pac-16 does occur, how can the Big 12 North leftovers just walk away from a conference that takes in a ton of money based on exit fees as well as its own contract for the next 2 years…

          They’d wait and then leave if they do, or negotiate to leave after taking the money and t