Stewart Mandel succinctly catches the “pinch me, I’m dreaming” aspect of the business side of college football these days:
… Otherwise, it’s business as usual among college football’s power brokers, which must seem mind numbing to their critics. But really, what’s their incentive for change?
Some would assume it’s money. How many times have we read over the past year that the commissioners are “leaving money on the table” by neglecting to adopt a playoff.
Yet over that same time, ESPN and Fox have been throwing obscene amounts of money at conferences and individual schools to show their regular-season games. The Pac-10 (soon to be Pac-12) is about to make a killing off their forthcoming rights deal, thanks to interest from Comcast/NBC.
The Pac-10 made about $28 million from the BCS last year. It’s expected to net nearly 10 times that with its new deal. And the commissioners will tell you their revolutionary 1-2 game is a major reason for that.
“We never could have believed the regular season would have grown over the last 15 years the way it’s grown, and I think that’s due in part to the BCS,” said Delany. “Obviously along the way there’s been controversy, but if you look at the growth of the television, the growth of interest in conferences around the country, I think it’s been a resounding success — more successful than I ever thought.”
This is what the Wetzels and PlayoffPACs keep missing every time they insist that college football’s power brokers are morons for not adopting a playoff. Those guys are making a killing lately on the regular season – and they don’t have to share the wealth outside of their own conferences.
Until somebody can present a convincing argument why Mike Slive, Jim Delany, Dan Beebe and the rest of their ilk should risk changing that, it ain’t gonna happen.