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Tag:DeLoss Dodds
Posted on: October 5, 2011 12:28 pm
Edited on: October 5, 2011 12:29 pm
 

Dodds talks LHN, Oklahoma and A&M

Posted by Tom Fornelli

John Hoover of the Tulsa World sat down for an exclusive interview with Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds, and Dodds shared some interesting info about Texas, the Longhorn Network, Texas A&M and the rivalry with Oklahoma. While the interview covered many areas, and if you're a fan of Texas or the Big 12 I suggest reading the entire thing, there were still a few areas that really caught my attention.

For instance, when Dodds was talking about where the idea of the Longhorn Network came from, he explained that, ironically enough, it was an idea that he shared with Texas A&M's Bill Byrne.

"I called Bill Byrne over at A&M and said, 'You know, I don't think we've got enough money or inventory to put on a 24/7 channel, but are you interested in helping us be a part of it?' And he pretty much said no," Dodds told Hoover. "So we just kept digging and digging and digging and Fox got a little interested and said they'd do it and that they'd pay us, and we said, 'Well, that's good stuff.' Then ESPN got interested and they said they'd do it and pay us more. So we are where we are."

Dodds also talked about keeping the Red River Rivalry between Texas and Oklahoma at the Cotton Bowl and whether or not the game might have to be moved to the campuses.

"Joe (Castiglione, athletic director at OU) and I have talked about that. Circumstances - you know, conference things - might dictate something different, but I don't see - I don't want to do it, and I know Joe doesn't want to do it," said Dodds. "So it'd take some circumstances outside of our control to make that happen.

"It could have happened. But ... we would have gone down fighting to keep the game. It's just that important to Oklahoma and Texas. I don't mean the schools, I mean the states."

Finally, when Dodds was asked about preserving the rivalry between Texas and Texas A&M he made it sound like not only did he think it wasn't possible, but also that it wasn't very important either.

"Well, they're out of the conference and we're scheduled up for 10 years. So I think it's different," said Dodds.

"That game - the rivalry game for us has always been Oklahoma. The A&M game's been a great game and all of that. And we may play 'em. But it's not something that we have to do. I think the Oklahoma game is something we have to do."

Those comments don't bode well for the future of the rivalry between the Longhorns and the Aggies.
Posted on: September 27, 2011 11:33 am
 

A&M AD: We want 'Horns as nonconference game

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Long before Texas A&M's move the SEC became official (as it did Sunday afternoon), fans on both sides have wondered what would become of the Aggies longtime -- and at 117 years, we do mean longtime -- rivalry with the University of Texas.
While the traditional Thanksgiving series' ultimate fate is yet to be determined, what we do know is that things were left solely up to the Aggies, the rivalry would remain intact. That's the word from Texas A&M athletic director Bill Byrne, who per CBSSports.com RapidReporter Brent Zwerneman said Tuesday that "we would like that to continue."

“We’ve been competing 117 years,” Byrne said. “It’s such a storied tradition."

Byrne's support (and A&M's) give the rivalry a shot at survivial. But since it naturally takes that support from both sides to work, it remains unlikely the two teams will continue playing. Just six days ago, Longhorn athletic director DeLoss Dodds forecasted an end to the rivalry if the Aggies completed their jump to the SEC, saying "I think it will be hard to schedule that game."

And it would be. particularly if the Big 12 expands into a 10-team league with a nine-game true round robin schedule. In addition to denying the Longhorns a lucrative annual home game (one they would have the rights to show on the Longhorn Network), it's hard to argue the 'Horns owe the Aggies much of anything after A&M's decision destabilized Texas's preferred conference home and may have driven them into the "Pac-16," if the Pac-12 had been willing to expand.

Agges fans (and administrators) would no doubt respond that it was Texas's unwillingness to share revenue equally and their forging ahead with the LHN that destabilized the Big 12 first, before A&M even considered leaving.

Frankly, there's no winners on either side of the argument. But unless Texas is willing to back down and scheudule the game, it won't much matter how A&M feels about it--there aren't going to be any winners between the two schools on the football field, either.

Posted on: September 22, 2011 10:43 pm
Edited on: September 22, 2011 11:06 pm
 

Big 12 tensely commited to an all-in future

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Eye on College Football: The latest conference realignment news
RapidReports: Up to the minute information on conference shifts

Chaos? Nah. We're all one big happy family.

Texas is in. Oklahoma too. Missouri has helped lead the charge.

That's the message that came out of middle America Thursday night. The Big 12 was saved and nine teams are committed to the future. Things were different, it was time to move forward.  

Despite the Sooners flirting with the Pac-12 and the Tigers with the SEC, everybody was staying put. The other Big 12 schools pledged solidarity led by the two schools who had explored leaving more than anyone.

Make no bones about it, Oklahoma wanted to go West and the only way that could have happened was if they could have convinced Texas to make concessions. That didn't happen and the Sooners had to concentrate on saving the conference they had spend the past 16 years in.

"This is a positive development for our state," President David Boren said. "It's a win-win for all of us. I'm optimistic about the future of this conference."

Never has there been so much optimism about a conference that someone wanted to leave days earlier than there was Thursday night in Norman.

Commissioner Dan Beebe, as part of the demands made by the Sooners, was pushed out in favor of former Big Eight commish and current consultant Chuck Neinas. Beebe would likely have been looking for a new job regardless what happened this week after the Big 12 nearly imploded for a second time in just over a year. He was placed in an impossible situation - between a rock (Texas), a hard place (Oklahoma) and a vulture (Larry Scott) - but he did an admirable job considering the circumstances.

Beebe did, after all, keep the league together following the departure of Colorado and Nebraska and added a millions to every school's coffers with a big second tier rights agreement. The commissioner's best move might have been, however, giving life to a hilarious alter ego on Twitter.

“I have been honored to serve the Big 12 Conference for the past eight and one-half years, including the last four-plus as its commissioner," Beebe said in a statement. "I care deeply for these fine institutions and the citizens they represent. It is satisfying to know the Big 12 Conference will survive, and I congratulate the members for taking strong action to ensure a bright future as a premier intercollegiate athletics conference."

Beebe's next move is anyone's guess. He'll be well taken care of after negotiating out of a new contract that was signed just last year. Perhaps he should head back to the NCAA, where he once was an investigator on staff, and help President Mark Emmert navigate the murky waters of college athletics he knows all to well.

"The bottom line is we achieved substantial reforms," Boren said. "We feel extremely good."

Yet, in a move reflective of how dysfunctional the conference still was, confusion reigned before, during and after Missouri and Oklahoma's dueling press conferences to announce those reforms. At one point, Boren's voice came through while Missouri Chancellor Brady Deaton was speaking on his call. One school leader said one thing, another school's leader said something slightly different.

Boren filibustered  - he is a former senator - about the Big 12 agreeing to a six-year grant of right for each all first and second tier media rights. Everybody was putting their faith in the conference for the next six years. Television revenue would be shared equally for the first time in the league's history. All for one (conference), one for all.

But that wasn't what the Tigers said. A spokesman told the New York Times that there was only "an agreement to pursue the grant of rights." Oklahoma's general counsel later told the Associated Press no contracts were signed.

The Big 12 schools wanted to imprison themselves to a conference hours from breaking apart but they couldn't even do that properly. To say that was this whole saga in a nutshell would be doing it a disservice. Wednesday and Thursday were supposed to be about saving something but what, exactly, was that?

Everybody was moving forward together, but are they really? Sschools were concerned about Texas and ESPN's Longhorn Network yet they had just gotten engaged to be married the next six years without any promises in return about LHN. Boren later added that it "was very possible" Oklahoma would be the second school with their own network. Instead of working on a problem, it appears the Sooners would rather double-down.

Texas has always been about Texas. The Pac-12, under Scott, has always been about the conference and the biggest reason as to why they wouldn't budge to meet the Longhorns' demands. The same is true in the Big Ten where just a few years ago they extended their grant of rights at least 20 more years. Schools have gone all in on their conferences while Texas hasn't. They've gone all in on Texas.

And that's their right. But if it looks like an independent (The Longhorn Network), walks like an independent (exploring life after the Big 12 numerous times) and talks like an independent (DeLoss Dodds), then the Longhorns might just be an independent.

And that's what needs to change. We'll see how firmly committed to the Big 12 Texas really is over the coming weeks and months.

"There are a number of trust issues that have to be discussed," Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt said earlier in the day. "I think there is a commitment that has to be discussed long-term."

Trust or no trust, the Big 12 schools are about to sign a binding agreement no one wants to sign.

"The University of Missouri is going to continue to work for what is best for the University of Missouri," Deaton said. "We have seen that aligned with the Big 12 Conference and we will continue to work with the various issues we have within the conference to carry it forward."

Conspicuously absent from all the activity was the one school that everybody was upset at. Accused of running the conference via proxy, ruining the Sooners' hopes of heading west and driving rival Texas A&M to another conference, one didn't hear much - if anything - about the Texas.

"The University of Oklahoma has no decision to drive the train anywhere. We have no desire to dominate the Big 12 conference," Boren said. "I hope no one will write in the future that anyone is driving the train in this conference."

Boren's right, it's not time to write, it's time to toast. The Big 12 has been saved.

To six more years of hating Texas!

Posted on: September 13, 2011 12:40 pm
Edited on: September 14, 2011 11:26 am
 

Report: Oklahoma wants out and Big 12 is 'done'

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

We can't personally vouch for the credibility of the Austin-American Statesman's sources. But if the picture portrayed by those sources in this story by Kirk Bohls and Alan Trubow is at all accurate, the day of reckoning for the Big 12 is just about at hand.

According to the report -- and as also reported by CBSSports.com's Dennis Dodd -- University of Texas president Bill Powers and athletic director DeLoss Dodds flew to Oklahoma Sunday for a meeting with Sooners officials. Powers' and Dodds' aim, according to Bolhs and Trubow: convince Oklahoma (and by association, joined-at-the-hip in-state rival Oklahoma State) to remain in the Big 12 and forgo applying for membership in the Pac-12.

But according to the report's sources, the Sooners' minds were -- and are -- already made up. They're looking West:
"There's nothing Texas could have offered Oklahoma that would have changed their mind. They were set on leaving the Big 12 before Texas got there," a well-placed source at a Big 12 school said, adding that Sunday's meeting had a very friendly and cooperative tone. "The Big 12's done. Oklahoma wasn't open to creating Big 12 stability" ...

"Texas must have come into the meeting and seen the handwriting on the wall," said a source close to OU and Texas who is familiar with these realignment issues. "I think OU and OSU will seek membership to the Pac-12 in the next two weeks, but [Texas] A&M comes first."
Despite the Sooners' and Cowboys' intentions, even the report isn't ready to move the realignment chess pieces just yet. While the Oklahoma and Oklahoma State move is "expected," Larry Scott -- who has said repeatedly the Pac-12 doesn't want to expand at this time -- and the Pac-12 presidents could reject the Sooners' and Cowboys' applications.

But assuming Scott does pull the trigger, Texas would be left without a viable conference as the Big 12 crumbles. Per the report, their options at that stage would be to follow the Oklahoma schools to the Pac-12 (or -14), apply to join the ACC, or go independent--and the report claims Texas officials have already had highly preliminary talks with the ACC.

While independence is described as the least appealing option for Dodds and Texas officials, the Longhorn Network could be a major stumbling block for joining one of the other conferences. According to Bohls and Trubow, "Texas has no desire to part, alter or share any aspect of The Longhorn Network, but it would not be able to retain the network as is in the Pac-12." The Longhorns are also reportedly balking at the Pac-12's plan for divisional alignments in a 16-team scenario.

So what's the bottom line right now? With the Statesman report backing the widespread rumors that the Sooners are ready to pack their bags, it seems safe to assume that Oklahoma is indeed bent on abandoning the Big 12 and concluding its viability as a conference. But past that? Every other conference realignment chip is still in the air, and it remains anybody's guess where they fall.

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Posted on: August 12, 2011 3:21 pm
 

Dan Beebe doesn't seem concerned about A&M

Posted by Tom Fornelli

It seems that if Texas A&M really is set on leaving the Big 12 to join the SEC, the Aggies better hope that the SEC's interest in them is mutual. According to our Texas A&M Rapid Reporter Brent Zwerneman, Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe has told Texas A&M that the Big 12 will survive without it. Which doesn't exactly sound like the words of a man who is trying to do everything he can to keep A&M in the Big 12.

Beebe also told Texas A&M that Texas is the school that holds the key to the Big 12's future, and that as long as the Longhorns don't leave, the Big 12 would survive. In fact, should Texas A&M leave then the Big 12 may just replace them with Houston

Of course, that's if Texas doesn't decide to leave the conference as well. Something that isn't exactly set in stone according to The Oklahoman. In a story about Oklahoma believing that Texas A&M is going to leave, there's also this tidbit about what the future of Texas may hold.
[Texas athletic director DeLoss] Dodds said his preference is for the Big 12 to bring in another school to replace A&M, should the Aggies leave. He also mentioned Texas and Notre Dame joining forces to create a new conference, should the Big 12 disintegrate. 
In other words, Texas doesn't really care if its in-state rival leaves the conference, but it just wants to make sure that the Big 12 remains a 10-school league, or the Longhorns will continue to cut their own path.

So if it wasn't apparent to you before, it should be now that the Aggies are merely just the first domino of what could be many to fall.
Posted on: August 4, 2011 4:30 pm
Edited on: August 4, 2011 4:31 pm
 

Future programs of the Longhorn Network

Posted by Tom Fornelli

On Thursday the new and controversial Longhorn Network announced a slate of programming that it will begin airing in the coming weeks. On the whole there's nothing all that groundbreaking in the lineup. There will be a show in which Mack Brown talks with Vince Young, Ricky Williams and Colt McCoy. There's also a look back at the 2005 national championship season, and your standard greatest games fare.

Being the visionary that I am, however, I decided to take a peak into my crystal ball to get a glimpse at what the Longhorn Network will be showing a little over a year from now. Let me tell you, there's going to be some must-see television going on.

High School Football - It's just like Friday Night Lights, except without a script, Connie Britton and every game ending on an unrealistic, last-second touchdown. What it will have, though, is plenty of Texas recruits.

The Departure - A five-part documentary series highlighting all the comings and goings in College Station as Texas A&M packs its bags and moves to the SEC.  You won't want to miss the episode where DeLoss Dodds and Bill Byrne run into each other at a local grocery store and let the expletives and produce fly.

Crying All Night with Don Beebe - A late night talk show that is shown every weeknight in which Don Beebe sits behind a desk and cries as his conference dissolves around him. His co-host DeLoss Dodds then consoles him while interviewing special guests!

Mack Daddy - Have you ever seen some of the lovely co-eds who call beautiful Austin, Texas home? Well now you have the chance to date them! Join Texas head coach Mack Brown as he hosts a game show that is a cross between The Match Game and Flavor of Love!

Major's Malfunctions - A refreshing family sitcom starring Texas co-offensive coordinator Major Applewhite. While Major has his problems with Garrett Gilbert at work, the trouble doesn't really start until he returns home to his sassy wife and two small children!

Aggie Rehab - Hosted by Dr. Drew, former Texas A&M fans move into a house where together they all try and overcome their love of Texas A&M and turn their lives around. Incredibly moving, sad and uplifting all at the same time.

Call your cable operators now!
Posted on: July 21, 2011 8:38 am
Edited on: July 21, 2011 8:56 am
 

Big 12 hits pause on Longhorn Network's HS plans

Posted by Chip Patterson

As soon as the general public got wind of the Longhorn Network's plan to televise high school games, red flags went up across the nation. CBSSports.com's Dennis Dodd mentioned that ESPN VP Dave Brown may have committed an NCAA violation by mentioning the names of two 2012 Texas commits in a June radio interview. The network has already asked the NCAA for guidelines on televising high school football games, but the weakened Big 12 conference wants to make sure the network has the league's best interests in mind as well.

Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe announced a temporary hold on the telecasts of high school football games on the Longhorn Network. Both the NCAA and Big 12 still need to make decisions on how the pending high school football media deal should be handled.

"It's not going to happen until and unless the conference can make it happen with benefit to all and detriment to none," Beebe told the Dallas Morning News. "It's fair to say what [ESPN VP Dave Brown] said publicly is why we're having conversations about this new world and what the parameters are."

Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds has stated that the university is ready to cooperate and wants to play by the rules in regards to the new network, and pledged his allegiance to the conference.

The recent developments with the network have re-started the rumors of Texas' rivals looking to leave the conference. Texas A&M's board of regents reportedly will hold a closed door meeting at the end of this week to discuss the new network, and wild (but concerning) rumors have swirled about Oklahoma considering a departure as well. The potential in-state recruiting advantage provided by airing high school football games on the network would be huge for the Longhorns, particularly if the game selection focused on the verbal commits and/or the highest profile recruits.

Posted on: June 2, 2011 7:27 pm
 

Big 12 didn't need that championship game anyway

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

You can't expect the Big 12 to look at last summer's defections of Colorado and Nebraska and say "Well, it was fun being a major conference while it lasted." There are, no doubt, some advantages to a 10-team league over 12. But the cheeriness at this year's Big 10, err, Big 12 spring meetings is very cheery indeed for a conference that waved good-bye to one of the sport's traditional powers and its lucrative conference championship game.

As the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports:
"We didn't plan it, exactly, but what we've ended up with is probably better than we would have planned," Texas athletics director DeLoss Dodds said Wednesday during the Big 12 meetings ...

"Now I can say this: I was always a little bit jealous of the Pac-10," said [commissioner Dan] Beebe, referring to its previous ability to schedule round robins in football and double round-robins in basketball.
To which the former Pac-10 responds: O RLY? Because at the same time Beebe was supposedly jealous of those things, Larry Scott was willingly giving them up in order to steal Colorado, become the Pac-12, and eventually land the richest television contract in college athletics history. Somehow, we don't think it follows Scott is suddenly going to become the one jealous of Beebe.

A big factor in the Pac-12's new television windfall is, of course, its new conference championship game. But Dodds insists having to deal with all that money and attention was kind of a drag anyway:
Big 12 schools for the first time will ... drop the title game that three times cost its loser a chance to play for the national championship.

"I think it hurt more than it helped; I like where we are not having the game," Dodds said.

Of course, it's awfully easy for Dodds to say; his Longhorn program is swimming in cash regardless of whether there's a Big 12 title game or not. We're forced to wonder whether his counterparts at Baylor or Iowa State would say the same, not only for the financial issues but because "we might lose our shot at a national title game" isn't exactly a major concern for them at the moment.

Then again: this would hardly be the first time Dodds and the Longhorns have taken it upon themselves to declare that's what best for Texas is what's best for the entire conference, would it?

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com