Category Archives: Big Ten Football

Friday morning buffet

We’re getting closer.  Hungry yet?

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Filed under Big Ten Football, Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, Media Punditry/Foibles, Notre Dame's Faint Echoes, Pac-12 Football, Whoa, oh, Alabama

Fans? Oh yeah, them too.

Big Ten Network programming director Jim Delany isn’t totally enamored with the current infestation of neutral site games, at least the ones that aren’t being broadcast on his network.

Delany’s letter, which was obtained by The Gazette, highlighted the league’s support for neutral sites provided at least half of the series occur within the Big Ten footprint and under the league’s television agreements. Delany wrote an arrangement would be “disapproved” if a Big Ten game was not designated as the home squad in at least half the games or if it was a one-game event that took place outside the league’s television umbrella.

While Delany cautioned schools to work with the conference before finalizing games, he also champions the idea of high-profile football games. Strength-of-schedule is a major component for the four-team College Football Playoff, which debuts this season.

“We know you are trying to create strong non-conference game schedules as we move into the College Football Playoff environment and as we prepare for our next big television negotiation,” Delany wrote. “We applaud and very much appreciate your efforts in doing so, as this should create value for your teams and fans as well as for our television partners and, therefore, for all Conference members. But please keep in mind the above policies that are important to all of us as we share collectively in the revenue generated by our televised games.”

As Brian Cook points out, Big Jim is concerned about some of his kids not sharing with the others.

In any case the memo indirectly indicates why neutral site games are popular: the two teams participating can split the TV money between themselves instead of between themselves and Indiana and Purdue and a bunch of other teams that are not in fact playing. When there’s a Jerryworld game, ESPN and Jerryworld get the rights and then give home-team-sized slices to both participants. The Big Ten doesn’t like that.

I doubt the schools care that Delany is miffed while they pocket those oversized checks.  But notice what Delany isn’t concerned about, per Cook.

It is of course completely nuts for Michigan to play Florida in Dallas. The stadium is smaller, the fanbases are far away, and the pageantry of college football is largely replaced with sterile NFL lawyer spaceship accoutrements.

But, hey, Jerry Jones’ bank account sure is nice.

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Filed under Big Ten Football

Sunday morning buffet

Eh, go get yourself some.

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Filed under Big Ten Football, Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

Couldn’t stand the weather

When you’re working on the the longest drought among the Power 5 conferences and Notre Dame without playing for a national championship, you grasp at whatever straws you can.

How tough has recruiting been in the Big Ten? Delany used weather as one selling point, saying it mimics NFL weather if a recruit wants to play at the next level. “Nobody has better weather than we do in August, September and October, and then you have NFL weather in November,” Delany said.

Boy, that ought to send kids flocking to the Big Ten banner, Jim.

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Filed under Big Ten Football

“It’s the best deal in the country.”

Ohio State’s Gene Smith is all in with Jim Delany’s vision of Big Ten expansion.

“I know that change is hard,” Smith said. “The reality is that the Big Ten needed to change in order to position ourselves for the 21st-century model of intercollegiate athletic competition.”

21st-century model?  What’s that, Gene?

Peel away from the emotional tug of tradition and view the latest expansion by the now 14-member Big Ten through the prism of economics.

That is how Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith sees this season’s addition of Maryland and Rutgers, schools located in Mid-Atlantic states, to the Midwestern-based league.

“From a business point of view, it makes huge sense,” Smith said. “This is a business deal. This is about money. Everybody wants to dodge that; I don’t. It’s about the stability of our conference for the long term.”

Nobody’s dodging that.  Except when they’re fighting player compensation.

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Filed under Big Ten Football, It's Just Bidness

Monday morning buffet

A light nosh before SEC Media Days kicks off.

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Filed under Big Ten Football, Look For The Union Label, Recruiting, Science Marches Onward, SEC Football, Stats Geek!, The Blogosphere

Insta-tradition!

Somewhere between cynical and pathetic:

In the Big Ten, Maryland will join a conference that loves tradition — and trophies. Twelve football matchups award hardware, such as the Old Oaken Bucket (Indiana-Purdue), Paul Bunyan’s Axe (Minnesota-Wisconsin) and a wooden turtle called the Illibuck (Illinois-Ohio State). The Terps have already entered conversations with Rutgers and Penn State to create new trophies, several athletic department officials said.

Manufacturing tradition.

The good news is they won’t really need it until the novelty of their new surroundings wears off.  And then the conference can just go out and add a couple more schools to the mix.  Now there’s your Big Ten tradition!

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UPDATE:  Is it too much to hope that Spurrier brings the snark about this nonsense?

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Filed under Big Ten Football