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: November 29, 2009 9:23 pm
Far from the national championship chase, SMU celebrated on Saturday.
A drought older than any of its players came to an end. By beating Tulane, the Mustangs are going bowling for the first time since 1984. As bowless streaks go it was only the fourth longest in the country. In terms of historical significance, it was No. 1.
SMU was the first, and to this point only, school to be given the NCAA death penalty. The program was shut down by the NCAA in 1987 due to widespread cheating. The school took itself out of competition in 1988 as well, perhaps out of shame.
No school has been given The Big Haircut since. Maybe schools have gotten the message, maybe they’re just getting better at cheating. Maybe the NCAA has been a bit reluctant too.
Some came close – Oklahoma State in 1988, Alabama this decade – but the wrongdoers always seemed to have an innate sense of putting a toe on the line, but not going over it. That’s because SMU’s case gave rise to “fixer” attorneys and former NCAA investigators who, for a price, could lead a school through the maze that is an NCAA investigation.
While other schools test the NCAA enforcement process, SMU has stayed clean. That’s a plus. On the field, SMU has found it impossible to get back to the competitive heights it enjoyed in the 1980s. Back then it was a top five program featuring the Pony Express – Eric Dickerson and Craig James at running back. It was competing with Southwest Conference and national powers.
But the reason for most of the excellence had a dark side. There was an extensive pay-for-play scheme that was so entrenched that it reached the state governor’s office. Four coaches have tried and failed since the death penalty to get SMU to a bowl.
The school had to scale down just to attempt to stay competitive. It built a smaller, on-campus stadium. It joined Conference USA where, until recently, it was fodder even at that level. Saturday, then, was a history on some small and most unnoticed level in the sport. SMU was “back”, assured of a bowl at 7-5 (most likely the Hawaii) Bowl after defeating the Green Wave.
The fixer, in this case, is June Jones who knows about resurrecting programs. In his second season at SMU, Jones completed on odd circle. The Mustangs are going to Hawaii where Jones coached for nine seasons. So entrenched is his legend that the coach who left the Warriors for more money, the mainland and a modestly better chance of long-term success, is seen as a drawing card for the Hawaii Bowl.
Ten years ago Jones led Hawaii to the biggest one-year turnaround in NCAA history (from 0-12 to 9-4). Despite a small budget and deplorable facilities, Jones then did the unthinkable. He led Hawaii to its first major bowl two years ago, the Sugar Bowl. The fact that the Warriors were 12-1 was less important than what the game meant.
Seeing 20,000 or so islanders walking around downtown New Orleans should stand as state of Hawaii, Sugar Bowl, BCS and college football lore for decades.
So Jones has worked his magic again. Saturday’s result means SMU has the best turnaround in the nation this season (from 1-11 to 7-5). Only one of the seven victories came by more than eight points. Shawnbrey McNeal became SMU’s 1,000-yard rusher since 2003. He was declared eligible the day before the season started.
Former Estonian track Margus Hunter blocked seven kicks. Freshman quarterback Kyle Padron beat out two-year starter Bo Levi Mitchell.
Rival recruiters no longer can no longer lob that 25-year thing around like a grenade. It isn’t going to end with this season, either. These Mustangs are scaled down but they’re much easier to like.
“They talk about the Pony Express and all that, well, guess what, they're going to talk about you guys from here on,” Jones told reporters Saturday. “I really believe that.”
Posted on: November 28, 2009 6:38 pm
It was like old times heading into Saturday: Oklahoma and Nebraska holding the key to the college football season.
For Boise State.
The Sooners came through for God, for country, for the Broncos who were down to their last BCS chance. Either Oklahoma beat Oklahoma State on Saturday or the Broncos might have been relegated to bowl purgatory.
For the love of all that is decent, Detroit? Really?
The BCS critics’ flamethrowers were at the ready before Oklahoma slogged through a somewhat boring 27-0 decision over Oklahoma State.
The result, though, meant a whole lot more in Idaho and in the Prairie Village, Kan. office of BCS executive director Bill Hancock than it did anywhere in Norman.
Tentatively, because there is one more hurdle to clear. If Nebraska upsets Texas next week in the Big 12 title game then Boise’s spot in the BCS will be taken Texas. The Horns would most likely go as an attractive 12-1 at-large team.
For Boise, Oklahoma and Nebraska have become teams of the century. If form holds – Texas will be a prohibitive favorite next week – then all five current undefeated I-A programs would be in BCS bowls. (TCU, Cincinnati, Boise, Texas and the Florida/Alabama winner)
Relieved: BCS bosses were ready to take more hits if Boise had been shut out despite a second consecutive undefeated regular season by the Broncos.
Comatose: Oklahoma State which shouldn’t have bothered to get off the bus. With a Fiesta Bowl berth staring them in the face, the Pokes choked.
What else do you call it? Sure, quarterback Zac Robinson was banged up, but didn’t we see a former minor league pitcher Brandon Weeden rally Okie State against Colorado?
As we’ve learned, the BCS has different affects on different people.
Posted on: November 23, 2009 11:02 am
Edited on: November 23, 2009 12:11 pm
A reader passed along some good points. At least they seemed reasonable at the time ...
It's the best interests of Oklahoma, New Mexico and Nevada this week to lose showdown games.
--An OU loss to Oklahoma State all but clinches a BCS berth for the Cowboys.
--New Mexico should lose to TCU to make sure it shares in the $19 million booty TCU and the Mountain West will collect for playing in a BCS bowl.
--The same for Nevada against Boise State.
The reader was missing one thing: That thing beating inside of every player. Imagine telling any Auburn Tiger that would be best for the school if they lost to Alabama this week. Although the Bedlam Series looks more like Bedtime this year, you better believe Oklahoma will want to kill the Cowboys.
The reader said the BCS incentivizes (if that's a word) "cheating". The BCS is a lot of things but it's not a stage for cheating.