Posted on: June 3, 2010 8:33 pm
Edited on: June 4, 2010 10:20 am
The dominoes are beginning to fall.
The Boulder Daily Camera has reported that Colorado AD Mike Bohn believes this his school will be among six Big 12 schools to get an invitation to the Pac-10 this weekend.
Bohn added that a Thursday report on Orangebloods.com appears to have some "validity" to it. The reported stated that Colorado, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Texas and Texas A&M would be invited to the Pac-10, essentially ending the Big 12 Conference. The new 16-team Pac-10, the report added, would then start its own network paying members $20 million per year.
I reported earlier that Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott did not deny the report. Pac-10 meetings begin Friday in San Francisco.
Posted on: June 3, 2010 7:52 pm
Edited on: June 3, 2010 9:04 pm
Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott didn't exactly deny Thursday's Orangeblood.com's report regarding a raid on the Big 12. Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe didn't react at all, hurrying to an elevator with media trailing behind.
It's obvious the report that predicted the biggest upheaval, perhaps ever in conference affiliation, touched a nerve all over the country.
Scott told the Denver Post late Thursday afternoon in San Francisco only that there will be no offer this weekend. The internet report said that it "appears" the Pac-10 "is prepared" to invite Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Colorado from the Big 12. The "thought is," according to the story, that the Pac-10 would then start its own network.
"I don't expect anything definitive," Scott said of the Pac-10 meetings that begin on Friday. "Nothing's changed in terms of our timetable. We've been very consistent. We're on course and moving deliberately."
As the story moved into Thursday evening, the report appeared to gain traction. Scott has said from the beginning that he would like to have a plan of attack by this summer. It is known that the Pac-10 must have its membership finalized by December in order to begin the next round of television negotiations with Fox. Its current contract with Fox expires in 2012, the same year as the Big 12.
The two conferences have discussed a partnership and scheduling alliance that would fall short of a full merger.
Here are several thoughts about the report.
• Texas AD DeLoss Dodds and Texas A&M AD Bill Byrne are both on record within the last two days as saying they did not favor the Pac-10 because of the strain on the student-athletes. Byrne, in particular, was furious that the women's basketball team had to travel all night from the Spokane, Wash. to College Station after an NCAA Tournament loss. The team's plane landed at 6:30 a.m. CT. Players had to be in class at 8 a.m.
• On the other hand, Texas has long looked down its nose at having to play the likes of Baylor and Iowa State in the Big 12. The school might have also tired of whining from Missouri about uneven conference revenue distribution. Dodds said earlier this week, "We're going to be a player in whatever happens."
• Scott aims high. It's obvious he wasn't hired by the Pac-10 to vet out the likes of Utah and BYU. Pac-10 expansion has moved to another level. That doesn't mean they'll necessarily get six Big 12 teams. It might mean the Pac-10 is going to try like hell, though.
• Buyouts wouldn't be an issue with a raided Big 12. How do you buy out of a conference that doesn't exist? With half of its members gone, the remaining Big 12 teams would be scrambling.
• Beebe refused to answer reporters questions on Thursday at the Big 12 meetings in Kansas City, saying he would speak on Friday. That's out of character for the usually affable Beebe who headed for elevator with reporters tailing behind. Is the Big 12 reeling from a knockout blow, looking for a way to retrench?
• Anyone want to ask the Rose Bowl's opinion of this? The contract with the Pac-10 is for ... the Pac-10. Not a 16-team conglomerate that might advance Texas Tech to Pasadena. While the network deals are redone, don't forget some bowl contracts are going to have to reconfigured.
• Missouri and Nebraska have to be nervous. Those fans better hope their schools get invited to the Big Ten. If not, we're looking at the Mountain West suddenly inviting the Big 12 leftovers. Nebraska at New Mexico? Colorado State vs. Missouri for a division title? Not exactly the Big Ten, fellas.
• The Mountain West could be in the right place at the right time. The league is expected to invite Boise State on Monday, expanding to 10 teams. The MWC is attempting to gain automatic BCS qualification status. Adding Missouri and Nebraska wouldn't hurt that pursuit.
• What does the Big Ten do if the Pac-10 becomes the first superconference? Or does it even matter? Missouri and Nebraska are still in play. How, then, does the SEC respond? If the report is true, the Pac-16(?) would pass the SEC in revenue paying out $20 million per team. The SEC/s new deal with CBS and ESPN guarantees each team $17 million.
Posted on: May 17, 2010 7:16 pm
Edited on: May 17, 2010 9:50 pm
...for the Big Ten spring meetings
Delany: "Essentially these decisions are local ... The schools are serving stakeholders -- coaches, athletes and fans, in some respects, not stockholders. And so there is always a stakeholder to make a claim on resources. Whether it's to have the best law school or the best medical school, no one questions that kind of competition. No one questions that Harvard or Texas have a [big] endowment and don't share it with Hofstra and South Alabama.
"But intercollegiate athletics is sort of unique in that institutions that have certain advantages -- based on demographics or history or tradition or fan base -- somehow are seen as the source of resources for others that do not [have them].
"I don't think that's going to happen anytime soon, but there's certainly a lot of gnashing of teeth, like why doesn't the Rose bowl spread its revenue around to Boise State? Well, partially because we developed it. We built it, it's our tradition, and to the extent that it's successful, it's successful for our institutions. So that's essentially a home-rule approach. I think it's an honest approach. I don't think there's anything wrong with money, but life's a lot easier when you have than when you don't."
• Several reports state the Mountain West presidents will consider inviting Boise State from the WAC next month. The presidents will meet in early June with the Boise State issue high on the agenda.
The Mountain West is seeking to bolster its BCS profile and could get a huge boost by adding the Broncos. The conference could earn a temporary, automatic BCS bid in 2012 and 2013. On the other side of that is possible attrition. Boise State could be joining a league that could possibly lose any one or all of the following: Utah, TCU and BYU.
Boise would have to be invited by July 1 for its record to count toward that 2012-2013 BCS goal.
• The Fiesta Bowl and University of Phoenix Stadium are diving into the neutral site pool.
• Here is Big 12 revenue distribution as of 2007. Note that no two schools in the league equal what one Big Ten school per year these days, $22 million.
1. Texas, $10.2 million
Source: Omaha World-Herald
• The Chicago Tribune said last week that the $22 million in revenue earned each year by each Big Ten school could double by 2015-16. Also, according to the Trib, look for more weeknight games by the Big Ten. The league traditionally didn't play weeknight games but recently changed its stance because of the advantage of stand-alone game/commercials promoting the Big Ten. Both Ohio State and Indiana will kick off the season with games on the night of Sept. 2.
Posted on: March 8, 2010 9:37 pm
(This is next installment of a continuing series analyzing the 2010 schedules of the BCS conferences)
Even with the loss of Colt McCoy, Texas never rebuilds (or is never allowed to). Oklahoma is over the loss of Sam Bradford as Landry Jones begins his first full season as starter. Nebraska is a fallen power making the long, slow slog back to the top. It hopes. But the Huskers are all the buzz coming off a 10-win season and sporting one of the nation's defenses -- even without a boy named Suh.
Elsewhere, there is depth throughout the Big 12. Missouri has established itself as a top 25 team every year. Texas Tech can only get better under Tommy Tuberville after Mike Leach's conduct going out the door almost ripped the program apart. Oklahoma State isn't going away with the Boone Pickens pipeline still running and Texas A&M is making strides, at least offensively. Baylor gets Robert Griffin back trying to end that pesky 15-year bowl-less streak.
Expect another national championship run, by some league team or another. A Big 12 team has been in five of the last seven BCS title games.
Game of the year: (non-conference) Florida State at Oklahoma, Sept. 11. In a sense, the suspense has been building for a decade. These teams last met in the 2000 BCS title game. Florida State is a shell of itself. Oklahoma not quite as strong as in the past. Watch for a rare Stoops vs. Stoops matchup. This time it's Oklahoma's Bob against FSU's Mark, the Seminoles new defensive coordinator. But there's so much more at stake here. This is essentially Jimbo Fisher's first real test (the opener is against Samford). It comes on the road in one of the game's most revered temples. We know FSU can score with Christian Ponder and other significant weapons. But for the Seminoles to get back to the top, it must start stopping people. God bless Mickey Andrews, but his final defense stunk. It's up to you, Mark.
Game of the year: (conference) Oklahoma vs. Texas, Oct. 16. As goes the Red River Shootout, so goes the Big 12. Or so it seems. The winner of this game usually has the inside track to the Big 12 South and national championship contention. Texas is a roll having won four of the last five. Included in that streak is two Big 12 titles, two national championship berths, one national championship. Or as they call it in Austin, "Doing pretty good lately."
Team on the spot: Nebraska. After a 10-win, Holiday Bowl-winning season in Bo Pelini's second year, we're all wondering if the Huskers are truly back. The Flying Pelinis will go into 2010 as favorites to win the North. At least. The next step is to win the Big 12 for the first time since 1999. Nebraska was one playmaker on offense -- one -- away from beating Texas last season. Armed with a fearsome defense, the only question for Pelini is whether his offense can score enough to make 10-2 a reality. Nebraska almost pulled off the upset last year. The toughest games (Texas, Missouri) are at home. Oklahoma is off the regular-season schedule.
Toughest non-conference schedule: Colorado. No surprise here. The Buffs haven't backed off in the non-con since the Bill McCartney days. Good for building a program, not good for keeping your job. Dan Hawkins starts a win-or-else season with Colorado State, Cal, Hawaii and Georgia outside of the Big 12. That's a blood rival, a Pac-10 team that tied USC for third in the Pac-10 and a Georgia team on the rebound. The only game you'd feel confident of putting in the win column is Hawaii and even that might be a stretch. CSU has split the last four meetings. CU has split the last four against the Pac-10 on the road but hasn't won in a Pac-10 stadium since 2004. Georgia is an SEC powerhouse coming off a down year but will be favored in Boulder. A 3-1 start is recommended. A 2-2 beginning might not be enough for Hawkins who has to play Missouri, Oklahoma and Nebraska on the road.
Easiest non-conference schedule: Missouri. The Tigers have beaten Illinois five consecutive times. McNeese State has never beaten a team from a current BCS conference. San Diego State last beat a team from a current BCS conference in 1999. Miami (Ohio) has lost 23 of its last 26. Throw in a home game against Colorado after that and the Tigers don't have to leave the state of Missouri to start 5-0.
Posted on: February 10, 2010 10:30 pm
Edited on: February 11, 2010 2:02 pm
The Mountain West is on notice.
The Big East too.
Don’t forget the Big 12 which could be ripped asunder.
One or all of those conferences are going to be impacted if, as expected, the Pac-10 and Big Ten expand in the near future.
After writing about the big picture on Wednesday, we’re here to speculate freely about how other conferences might be impacted.
Mountain West: After leading his league to the brink of BCS automatic qualifying status, commissioner Craig Thompson has to be concerned.
A BYU-Utah defection to the Pac-10 makes a lot of sense. In basketball, the league has travel partners (Washington-Washington State, Arizona-Arizona State). The Utes and Cougars are bitter rivals but would be make ideal additions due to the far-flung nature of the league.
I still don’t know how the Pac-10 views the academic aspect of expansion, so I’m not sure how it views the combination of a state school (Utah) and what amounts to a private school (BYU). If there is a fallback, it could be San Diego State.
If the Big Ten were to take Missouri, that’s a potential three teams ripped from the Mountain West and could mean the end of the league. The three most likely replacements would be Boise State, Fresno State and Texas-El Paso.
The best non-BCS league could find itself teetering on the edge of existence, or at least relevance.
Big 12: The biggest hit comes if both Colorado (Pac-10) and Missouri (Big Ten) leave.
If Missouri or Colorado leave, the Big 12 would go get TCU from the Mountain West. While that would wound the MWC, the league would most likely then invite Boise State.
If both Colorado and Missouri left, the Big 12 would get TCU and, maybe, Houston? Either way, the Big 12’s TV stature would shrink.
Big East: The league was almost wiped out when the ACC expanded five years ago. What happens if Pittsburgh, Syracuse or Rutgers is taken by the Big Ten?
Most likely the Big East would raid Conference USA for Central Florida. That would get the league further into Florida. UCF is third-largest school in the country (53,000) behind Ohio State and Arizona State. There's got to be some football players in there somewhere. Plus, the school has made a huge commitment to facilities.
After the wounds caused by the ACC, another hit could cause the end of the Big East in football.
My latest look on how the Big Ten, Pac-10, Big 12 and MWC might look in the future.
Tags: ACC, Air Force, Arizona, Arizona State, Baylor, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Boie State, BYU, Cal, Central Florida, Colorado, Colorado State, Fresno State, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Missouri, Mountain West, Nebraska, New Mexico, Northwestern, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Oregon State, Pac-10, Penn State, Purdue, San Diego State, Stanford, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas El-Paso, Texas Tech, UCLA, UNLV, USC, Utah, Washington, Washington State, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Posted on: January 10, 2010 11:02 am
Texas Tech rebounded nicely. No, make that threw down a slam dunk with the hiring of Tommy Tuberville.
The decision put a Wild, Wild, West, yahoo (not the website) program back on the tracks. Apparently, there is someone out there in West Texas with a level head. Tuberville was, as they say, was the best athlete left on the draft board. National championship caliber, great recruiter, great coach.
Good to see it looks like he will keep some elements of Mike Leach’s offense. This is a coach who could recruit well enough to challenge Texas and Oklahoma now and then.
I’ve got his first order of business, though: Do not renew Adam James’ scholarship. It’s clean, it’s legal and there are no messy entanglements with Craig “The Helicopter” James. It’s clear the kid can’t play. Do what is usually done when players don’t progress or measure up.
Adam James is a redshirt sophomore who has caught 32 career passes. But it’s not even about the production. It’s about Texas Tech cleansing its soul and moving on. Leach was fired for his alleged mistreatment of James. That trumps everything else. I’m not going minimize the issue.
But Tuberville doesn’t need a cancer on the team.
Second thing I’d do: tear down that “shed”, “garage” or whatever you want to call it where Adam James was reportedly placed. If it stands, it will become a landmark where mom, dad and the kids will come to see on vacation. Not good.
Tubs can do without a whiny, daddy’s boy receiver who is lucky to have a scholarship in the first place. But Tuberville doesn’t have to say, or even think, any of that.
Just serve the kid notice, Tubs. No one can complain. You’re trying to build a program. Adam James doesn’t fit in.
Posted on: January 1, 2010 12:19 pm
Edited on: January 1, 2010 4:41 pm
Shame on Craig James.
Shame on ESPN.
Shame on Texas Tech.
If what Mike Leach said was true in the New York Times on Friday, then what we all thought two days ago is a mirage. Leach and other sources claim that the coach did not, in fact, mistreat Adam James. Leach said only that he did not know where the player was taken and that he ordered only that James be taken "out of the light." Leach is supported by head trainer Steve Pincock and a team doctor.
Leach hasn’t spoken this candidly because he was busy suing the school. But now that it has fired him, the gloves are off. Most telling is the accusation by Leach that James leveraged his position as an ESPN analyst to get more playing time for his son. Through a spokesman, James said the accusations were "absurd."
I received two calls this week from people I trust saying James had bothered coaches and that he had tried to leverage his influence at the network to get his son playing time. Big Daddy James had become a royal pain in the you-know-what. None of that should dismiss the assertion that Leach allegedly mistreated James' son. But if a court ultimately rules in favor of Leach in what is sure to be an unlawful termination suit brought by Leach, James' job could be in danger.
I thought from the beginning it was borderline unethical that friends and co-workers of James were reporting this story. It had that "railroad" smell to it from the beginning with James being portrayed as the protective parent.
There is definitely another side to this, a side that ESPN hasn’t reported until after the Times ran its story. An ESPN employee said that it did report the e-mails written by assistant coach Lincoln Riley as well as a memo written by Texas Tech doctor Michael Phy before the Times story. Just throwing this out there but where was the Worldwide Leader’s info coming from – James, his son, maybe both? That’s OK if Craig James worked for Fox. It’s not OK if he drives a story in his favor with his employer.
With Leach firing back, Texas Tech better check its bank account and ESPN should consider firing their guy. First, he is now as radioactive as Leach in his own profession. The rumor that James is considering a Senate run might have to be addressed. Free publicity, it would seem, for a future politician?
Also, what coach will want to talk to James in the future? Even if his son was mistreated by Leach, the allegation that has been badgering the Texas Tech staff will not go over well in the coaching profession.
As is usually the case, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle but let's look at this a different way. The fact that Leach would not "apologize" to the James family didn’t make sense from the beginning. If Adam’s treatment was so heinous, why would a simple apology make Big Daddy go away?
There are three sides of this story: Texas Tech's, Leach's and James'. I don’t know quite who to believe but I do know who has lost. The Phony Express, Big Daddy James.
Posted on: December 30, 2009 12:50 am
Edited on: December 30, 2009 12:52 am
These e-mails were forwarded to CBSSports.com on Tuesday. They include messages from strength coach Bennie Wylie, inside receivers coach Lincoln Riley, former assistant coach Dana Holgorsen (now at Houston) and former players Eric Morris, Graham Harrell and Rylan Reed ...
To Whom It May Concern: