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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby Cerebral_DownTime » Mon May 03, 2010 1:34 pm

Why?
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby skatingtripods » Mon May 03, 2010 1:38 pm

Cerebral_DownTime wrote:Why?


Because the Big 16 sounds better than the Big 10 + 1?
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby Triple-S » Mon May 03, 2010 1:41 pm

Cerebral_DownTime wrote:Why?


Image
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby jb » Wed May 05, 2010 7:24 am

wiz1001 wrote:http://bit.ly/atMoGI

Roundup of Big ten expansion links from Rittenberg at ESPN

There does seem to be some agreement lately that the league wants to go to 16 teams, and that the five to be added could be Missouri, Nebraska, Pitt, Rutgers and Syracuse



If you have beer and you add water it makes the beer bad.

I guess this does make Michigan better, though.

And yes, football is 90% of what matters...
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby JCoz » Wed May 05, 2010 3:47 pm

Thats a negative JB. Football in certainly not 90% of what matters.

I'm going to post only the second article in the entire interweb that is relevant at all.

Sports only talks are absolute ignorance incarnate, as are most points regarding traditional football rivalries and travel expenses.

Its preminum content, don't rat me out, fuckers.



Charles Babb looks at prime candidates for Big Ten expansion and why the time is right.

What can you say at this point about Big Ten expansion which has not already been said?

In looking at the question of expand, don’t expand, how many will the conference add, etc. – it turns out quite a bit. Having never been afraid to fill a few lines of space previously, I’m going to offer my (probably worthless) thoughts.

Will they opt for the central portion of the U.S. – the heartland? Will they try for the Northeast in what would clearly be a dream come true for Joe Paterno and Penn State? Will they try to have their cake and eat it too by snagging universities in both regions? What is driving this, and what will be the fallout?

I am going to assume from this point forward the following are academic and institutional fits for the conference. This will not be simply about sports – though clearly sports are a driving factor. Also, this is going to be a very, very brief discussion of these teams with more weight being given to what I think is about to happen.

The Usual Suspects

While Missouri has been largely inconsistent in its sports, the St. Louis and Kansas City markets are obviously no joke. Talent in both localities could improve the conference, not to mention the potential television dollars. It would expand the Big Ten footprint into a state which has been growing at a healthy clip for some time, provide natural rivalries for Iowa and Illinois, and allow the conference to make headway in a region formerly controlled by the Big 12.

Nebraska loves all things Cornhuskers. Their state population may not seem overly impressive, but sometimes it isn’t the overall population as much as the value of the brand. Nebraska’s rabid fans have them sitting pretty. What the state does not have in numbers they bring home in ratings and in marketing.

Texas and Texas A&M are the two big enchiladas if the Big Ten moves this direction. They are likely a package deal, but what a deal. Giving up the Eastern market might be a risk worth taking if the conference could grab these two high profile universities who fit in most every way. Respected nationally and internationally in multiple academic disciplines with research grants and facilities, Aggies and Longhorns also will support their collegiate sports and travel. These two turn on televisions not just in Texas but virtually anywhere in the world. Three years ago, I had a great football conversation in Edinburgh Castle (Scotland) with Longhorn fans that yearned to see their team on television in Europe, but we all happily agreed at least there was rugby.

Notre Dame is a no-brainer for the Big Ten, and frankly Notre Dame would be (in my opinion) wise to consider joining. I don’t buy that the Irish are not under consideration or would not instantly shoot to the top of the list if they were to express legitimate interest. This program, more than any other, will turn on televisions across both the central and the northeast regions the Big Ten longs to snare. While they are not a large research institution, their faculty previously indicated a desire to join and make use of the resources the Big Ten could provide to their students.

Rutgers may not have the sports tradition but from a university perspective they are a great fit. As a large, research institution in the eastern market they will add to the resources of the conference academically as well as expand its geographical footprint. With New Jersey bordering Pennsylvania it will add spice for Penn State and also might help balance out divisions in what could be a tricky proposition.

Syracuse has fallen on hard times of late in football, but their men’s basketball team continues to impress. They, too, add to the geographical footprint by bringing in at least a portion of New York. The question many have with Syracuse is not with its academic or institutional fit but whether or not they will really turn on televisions along the East Coast.

What I Think Might Happen…

This is where the discussion turns interesting to me. Even if the Big Ten doesn’t make all of the right steps or add the particular programs some might advocate, the repercussions are what should make this must see television.

Let's just say the Big Ten is really, really smart and invites a combination of these four teams with at least one from the heartland and at least one from the East Coast to enter the conference starting in 2011:

Rutgers

Syracuse

Missouri

Nebraska

The Pac-10 goes after Utah and Colorado with the option of adding more in 2011.

At this, the Big East has been plundered ... and the Big 12 now is just the “new Big Ten” with no title game. The SEC and ACC, sensing a change initiate expansion talks while the Big 12 and Big East are fighting for their own survival.

In response to the Big Ten’s move, the SEC convenes a meeting and decides to invite several natural geographical fits – and force a renegotiation of their new television contract. They offer a combination of Miami (Fla.), Florida State, Georgia Tech, Virginia, and Virginia Tech. Most appear inclined to accept given the higher revenues offered by the SEC compared to the ACC.

The ACC knows it is in trouble and opens discussions with Connecticut, Pittsburgh, the University of South Florida, and perhaps Navy. In this way, the conference can at least hold their own and recover a portion of what they lost to keep their seat at the big boys’ table.

Now we have:

The Big Ten at either 13 or 14 members with possibly three more slots open but at least two.

The Pac-10 at 12 members with the possibility of adding several more programs (including Texas and Texas A&M, Texas Tech, and perhaps even BYU).

The SEC pushing or already at 14-16 members.

The Big East with as many as 6 or as few as 4 members remaining.

The Big 12 down to either 9 or 10 members.

If this were to happen, and have no doubt it could, Texas, Texas A&M, and Notre Dame are all examining their options. None of them want to be caught standing alone when the music stops. They all want a chair, and none of them (especially the more vulnerable Notre Dame) wants to be locked out in the cold.

The Big Ten in the Driver’s Seat for 2011-12

While other conferences are scrambling, the good ship Big Ten with its captain Jim Delaney at the tiller are making port from Texas to South Bend to New York City. They would likely be fielding phone calls from teams in at least three leagues – The ACC, the Big East, and the Big 12, and the conference might end up getting to choose between Notre Dame and Texas/Texas A&M, or if they play their cards just right they might end up with all three.

The implosion of the Big East could even provide the Irish administration a truthful, legitimate way to say, “We tried to remain independent but could not.”

This coup would even allow for a fairly equitable pair of eight-team divisions placing Texas, Notre Dame, and possibly Nebraska in one division with Ohio State, Penn State, and Michigan in the other.

Were this to occur the Big Ten would have the top six winningest programs in college football history – all in one conference.

What is driving this?

The immediate driver on this bus is likely sports revenues, but don’t think for a moment the presidents of these venerable institutions are signing off to be a sports league. While that might work elsewhere as justification it will not in the Big Ten. There are other items behind this which are not getting much play nationally but are much more important.

First, take a look around. The U.S. as a nation is entering a tough time economically, and even if this improves projected spending problems will likely plague Washington. Both the federal government and state governments are running deeper in the red than the XFL and USFL.

What does this mean? It means less money for state funded institutions. This, coupled with higher costs will demand greater collaboration. The Big Ten has long done this on a grand scale, but adding additional institutions like Nebraska, Syracuse/Rutgers, Texas, and Texas A&M would provide a shot in the arm for all parties concerned. Shared professors, shared research, and collaborative projects might save each school millions – and even earn them tens of millions in additional grants every year. This would make the $20 million-plus in revenue per program from the Big Ten Network seem like chump change.

Don’t believe me?

Check out the budget for The Ohio State University in 2009-10. It came to a total of $4.45 billion. You read it correctly. $4.45 billion. Considering $937 million of those dollars came from state and federal governments who are currently the good ship Titanic in terms of revenue – where will this behemoth institution (with an employee head count of 40,744) find the dollars to replace what they are likely to lose in the coming decades? How might they consolidate to spend less on salaries and research but still accomplish the same goals?

Nor is Ohio State alone. The budget for Texas (just in Austin) for 2009-10 is over $2.1 billion. The budget for the University of Wisconsin is $2.9 billion. On and on we could go. Check out this article from last January involving the University of Minnesota, linked here.

Those focusing on the sports angle alone and even those including the institutional academic ratings are missing the boat in a huge way. Higher education is hurting. Layoffs and hiring/ spending freezes dominate the discussions while the dark clouds of dwindling dollars available for donations are on the horizon. Toss in proposals on limiting tax deductible gifts which have been floated by politicians of late and you have a nightmare scenario for most institutions of higher learning across the nation. They are being asked to do more with less while removing the best incentive to give for many wealthy donors, and there is no end in sight.

We are talking tens of billions of dollars here, not some contract for television worth another $100 million with the addition of 3-5 more universities. Compare $100 million to $40 billion, and it’s pretty clear this is not just about sports.

Second, Congress and smaller FBS institutions have been making increasing noise about regulation of the BCS and NCAA sports. It has long been my conspiracy theory the Big East retained their automatic slot in the BCS several years ago largely for one reason – so long as they remain a part of the BCS the big schools/power conferences outnumber the smaller schools.

However, with the slow addition of just a few FBS schools every year the days of the power conferences’ ability to rule by fiat are numbered. By my count there are only 65 teams playing FBS football in the power conferences, but there are 120 members of the FBS. This means unless the trend changes we probably will see the power conferences in the minority in no more than 15 years.

The minute that happens you will see posturing congressmen and the convening of a panel to determine how to “more equitably share the revenues” created from programs like Ohio State, Michigan, Texas, Alabama, USC, Florida, Penn State, Tennessee, etc.

Does anyone really think the powers that be within these mammoth universities are going to sit back and watch this happen? Does anyone think the Buckeyes or Crimson Tide or Longhorns will willingly share the revenues created because they invested hundreds of millions in their product with a university which has invested a fraction of that amount?

Will they simply drive down the road to the nearby programs who don’t have a fan following, have lousy facilities, and who don’t pay a coach any more than they can help --- and cut a check when they have spent $200 million on stadium renovations, $20 million on training facilities, $5 million a year on the coaching staff, etc., etc., etc.?

If you think they will sit back and watch the politicians give away the money they have earned through investments and commitments in sometimes tough economic times – think again.

Delany (among others) is no fool. He recognizes if they wait until they are on the cusp of being outnumbered it will create an outcry and indignation in Washington. Every state with an institution which had planned on being a part of the money grab will have hearings.

It will become much more difficult and politically perilous for universities in need of federal and state funds to balance their budget because they will be almost unable to move for fear of a powerful state senator crushing their budget, but if they don’t make a move they will lose millions in hard fought, hard earned revenue redistributed to a program which has literally been playing at the FBS level for less than 20 years. Their best chance to keep their money is to act before the senators can get their noses involved and the smaller institutions can organize and mobilize.

The power conference teams, if they form a consortium of 64-plus institutions will then be able to secede from the NCAA, control their own destiny, and re-write the entire rulebook by which we now see them operate.

To further widen the gap and make sure only the bravest of souls seek to follow, they can go so far as to create a limited football playoff with the best of the bowls, move to 100 scholarships (or more), and create a new men’s (and women’s) basketball tournament with higher payouts to the participants. They can then use the larger payouts per program from these exclusive revenues to build stadiums and facilities and hire coaches which will ensure their dominance.

Concluding Thoughts

Now to be sure, some might say this can’t happen or won’t happen or it is a pipe dream or even that this is all about sports and the Big Ten Network, but is it really? If you, as a university president, could enhance the value of your institution while lowering your budget costs by tens of millions per year – wouldn’t you do it knowing federal, state, and even private funds might be more difficult to come by in the future? If you, as an athletic director, knew your hard fought dollars might soon be awarded to another by politicians in Washington – would you sit back and wait for it to happen?

This is not meant to insult any of those smaller institutions; it is to say, however, expecting the big boys to share is like expecting executives on Wall Street to file out of their offices en masse and march angrily down the streets demanding higher taxes on the wealthy. It is like expecting the politicians in Washington all come to an agreement to curtail spending, vote for term limits, and endorse a pay cut and a reduction of their travel expenditures. It is like expecting Paris Hilton to become the next Mother Teresa …

It isn’t going to happen.

Whether this comes in three years or in 30 years, it is coming. Remember, it has been just 26 years since teams were able to market themselves on television outside of the NCAA … and in that span how much has changed? Would you have predicted the day in 1984 where the Big Ten formed its own television network with a value in the hundreds of millions of dollars? Would you have predicted the Men’s NCAA Basketball Tournament and its broadcast rights would be valued in the billions of dollars? Would you have predicted the BCS and at least a change to the exclusive arrangement between the Big Ten and Pac-10 in the Rose Bowl?

Change is the only constant; expect to see more – much more.

Finally, whether the Big Ten ends up with Notre Dame, Texas, and Texas A&M – or not…this is still a great move for the conference and for the member institutions. It will be difficult to align the divisions and, yes, it will likely lessen The Game to some extent. But then again, maybe not. That game will still be for all the marbles with one or both teams probably playing for a conference or divisional championship. So while change is constant, that one piece of tradition should stay the same.
Last edited by JCoz on Wed May 05, 2010 3:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby JCoz » Wed May 05, 2010 3:49 pm

Triple-S wrote:The thing is, if the expansion happens, Notre Dame would really be out of options.
I mean really, the Big East minus those members is a joke (not that it isn't already, at least when it comes to football) and would pretty much become some weird merger of Conf. USA schools.


SPOT ON!! Notre dame is in BIG trouble if expansion happens and they find themselves still an independant.
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby jb » Thu May 06, 2010 9:00 am

Football in certainly not 90% of what matters.



Blashpemer! Stone him!

Or move him to Kentucky or soemthing.

(Of course you are right. I was talking about my own POV. Adding 4 average to shitty FB programs does nothing for me.)
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby JCoz » Thu May 06, 2010 9:46 am

jb wrote:
Football in certainly not 90% of what matters.



Blashpemer! Stone him!

Or move him to Kentucky or soemthing.

(Of course you are right. I was talking about my own POV. Adding 4 average to shitty FB programs does nothing for me.)


From my point of view, football is huge, but I also would like to see the B10 stake its claim to the overall pie here, this is the critcal juncture.

Don't get me wrong, my sights are set squarley on Texas.

Texas, Texas, Texas.

And even though JoJo is thougroghly full of himself RE:UT in this discussion, he should realize that the B10 presents just as much gain for UT as UT does for the B10.

UT may be a juggernaut, but the region it resides in is not and never, ever, will be. And neither will the Pacten's.

No one can give a better overall opportunity to them than the B10 can. in fact no one comes very close.

So bring on UT and bring A&M with you. While your at it add the St Louis market and accept ND's eventual groveling to join when they finally realize they are about to be left in the ruins that will be independance after major conference realignment.
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby Triple-S » Thu May 06, 2010 4:18 pm

I made up the ultimate expanded dream league for the Big Ten (well at least in my eyes), put them in 6, 4 team division and at the end of the year whomever has the two best records, they play for the conference championship in Indianapolis


Syracuse
Boston College
Rutgers
UConn

Penn State
Pitt
West Virginia
Cincinnati

Ohio State
Michigan
Michigan St
Notre Dame

Purdue
Indiana
Northwestern
Illinois

Wisconsin
Minnesota
Iowa
Iowa St.

Missouri
Kansas
Kansas St.
Nebraska

You play each team in your division once (thus protecting a major amount of the rivalries like TOSU-Michigan), and then have one out of division rivalry game that you're guranteed to play every year (Purdue-ND for example), following that it's scheduled much in the NFL manner.
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby JCoz » Thu May 06, 2010 4:48 pm

How can your dream scenario include adding Kansas and K-St instead of UT and T A&M?
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby Triple-S » Thu May 06, 2010 5:13 pm

JCoz wrote:How can your dream scenario include adding Kansas and K-St instead of UT and T A&M?


as much I'd love to see A&M and Texas join the "Big 24", just seems like they don't fit as well geographically.
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby JCoz » Thu May 06, 2010 6:45 pm

Triple-S wrote:
JCoz wrote:How can your dream scenario include adding Kansas and K-St instead of UT and T A&M?


as much I'd love to see A&M and Texas join the "Big 24", just seems like they don't fit as well geographically.


Dream big brosef. Fuck geography. Lol. Besides, thier academic issues are way more of an issue than travel distance.
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby gnati » Thu May 06, 2010 7:30 pm

Its preminum content, don't rat me out, fuckers.



Charles Babb looks at prime candidates for Big Ten expansion and why the time is right.


I won't rat you out if you stipulate for the record that Charles Babb is a self rightous blow hard....
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Re: Big Ten to add 12th team?

Unread postby JCoz » Thu May 06, 2010 8:49 pm

gnati wrote:
Its preminum content, don't rat me out, fuckers.



Charles Babb looks at prime candidates for Big Ten expansion and why the time is right.


I won't rat you out if you stipulate for the record that Charles Babb is a self rightous blow hard....


Fair enough on normal occasions, but this truly is a great article.

Its very refreshing to have someone actually write a relevant article on the topic.

So fucking sick of read bullshit articles about traditional rivalries and travel expenses....and what is a "good fit".

Totally ignorant takes, at least if you are talking about what IS going to happen rather than just what you'd want.
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