Daily Archives: February 9, 2012

We didn’t ask for this, fellas.

I guess this is my day to crap all over Greg McGarity, but really, I can’t let this comment pass.

“I think if you ask Alabama and Tennessee, like us and Auburn, we’d like to retain the games,” McGarity said. “But does that work? What do the other 10 schools think? Those four schools like having those games but there’s no other East-West match-up that has that piece of history to it. So I don’t where that fits in.”

He said athletic directors will study “numerous models” when they meet.

“With 14 teams, not everybody will be happy,” he said. “Some will have a problem with everything. But we’ll make decisions based on the best situation of the league.”

In case you missed it, fans, the man just gave you the finger.

Let’s make sure you understand the context of that quote.  The SEC was doing fine and dandy with a twelve-team arrangement.  Nobody – at least if by “nobody”, you’re referring to the people who actually spend the money to watch the games – was screaming for the conference to get bigger.  Expansion has happened because people like Mike Slive and Michael Adams have seen their peers in other conferences swinging bigger dicks with their broadcast contracts and aren’t happy about that.

And now that they’ve made a mess of the schedule, they’ve got to decide who takes the hit, the fans or “the league”.  Yeah, like that’s a tough choice.

I’ve been a passionate college football fan for most of my life.  I’ve blogged about my passion for more than five years now.  But it’s gradually dawning on me that the people running the show are bound and determined to suck every drop of joy I get out of it.  Step by step it’s happening before our eyes.  College football is turning itself into NFL-lite.  History and tradition aren’t money makers and thus are to be cast aside when they become nothing more than an inconvenience for those who see 90,000 people in the stands on a Saturday as little more than a bunch of wallets.

I’ll stick around for now, because they haven’t killed it yet.  But I don’t trust these guys farther than I can throw ’em and you shouldn’t either.  Don’t expect things to turn out well, because they don’t have your best interests at heart.  I’m not sure if they ever did.  They’re just more open about it now.


UPDATE:  Paul suggests McGarity may have one of two target audiences in mind, the fans and…

ESPN/CBS as the Target — The SEC wants a major bump in revenues from ESPN/CBS in broadcasting rights.  To get that bump, given that we expanded without a specific monetary promise of greater revenue* from our TV partners, they need some sort of leverage.  The idea that the SEC desperately wants to avoid a 9 game schedule could be little more than a negotiating ploy.  “We’re so willing to avoid an 9 game schedule, that we would be willing to give up UGA vs. AU and Bama vs. UT to stay where we are….unless you made us one hell of an offer.”  So…you leak our fear that the AU series would be lost due to the emphasis we’re placing on the 8 game schedule.

Eh, maybe.  But I don’t get why the supposedly preeminent football conference would have to negotiate so publicly and shrilly in order to get its way.  If you’re trying to brace the fans over what you’re about to do, though…



Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

How stupid does he think we are?, Part Two

I may not be sure that Mike Slive is insulting our intelligence with his coy act, but I’ve got no doubt Greg McGarity is with what has to be the lamest excuse you’ll ever hear as to why the SEC is resisting a move to a nine-game conference schedule:

“Nine games, and Georgia Tech, that makes 10 games,” McGarity said. “If you ever wanted to schedule Clemson or Ohio State, like we have, then that only leaves one guarantee game. That’s a pretty tough schedule. Fans would love it. But I don’t know if your coaches or players (would). That’s strapping it up 11 of 12 weeks there. You have to have some time where some players play who never get a chance to be on the field.

That’s why you schedule some of the I-AAs, and some of the other games, to let some of those kids grow, let those kids get their experience.”  [Emphasis added.]

They need that fourth game for third stringers and walk-ons.  That’s the noble cause McGarity is hitching his wagon to.

My mind is truly boggled.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

How stupid does he think we are?, Part One

You know, the people who shriek about antitrust violations when they look at the BCS tend to forget one unique characteristic about D-1 college football.  Unlike any other organized sport at the college or professional level, its postseason isn’t monolithically managed.  There’s no league office setting the rules.  There’s no NCAA collecting the money and passing out checks.

There are just a bunch of guys out there protecting their fiefdoms.  Some do it better than others.  Some find areas of cooperation.  But in the end, it’s every conference for itself.

Which is why I find Mike Slive’s reaction to the news that Jim Delany has his conference pondering what life with a plus-one might look like utterly predictable.

“Really a lot of this discussion is premature, and I want to respect the process that we’re in,” Slive told members of the Nashville Sports Council during a question-and-answer session. “We’ve had four-year formats since we started. We’ve done it on the basis of four years, so each four-year period you have to sit down and decide what format is going to be going forward. So we have decided to sit down and talk about this from every different side.”

Big Ten, you’re not the boss of Slive!  Like I said, it’s hardly a surprise that the SEC won’t let that train be driven by its biggest rival alone.

But here’s where Slive jumps the shark, so to speak:

… He’s also not sure what prompted the current interest in the plus-one plan.

“It’s been an enormous success for us to have four different teams win the national championship over the last six years has been incredible and unusual. It’s a record that’ll never be broken,” Slive said. “Whatever it is that brings people to the table, I’m glad they’re coming.”

Evidently Mike Slive, a man who’s presided over a conference expansion that nobody really was looking for (except the good people at Texas A&M) simply to get a lever to renegotiate the contracts for the SEC’s broadcast rights, wants to have us believe that he’s the only person in America who doesn’t know that money and getting more of it is the primary motivator behind all the changes which have washed over college football in the past few years.  Surely he jests.

I think we’ve just been insulted.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

Banged for the buck

Believe it or not (and you probably won’t), Georgia Tech spends more on recruiting than all but six schools in America.


Filed under Georgia Tech Football, Recruiting

“This is a bad place to have a personal vendetta, I can tell you that.”

If a couple of hillbillies got into a big enough pissing match over their two beloved college teams, you could expect blood to be spilt.

That’s not quite how it goes when such folk happen to be members of the United States Senate (h/t Dr. Saturday), probably because liquor isn’t involved.  But it’s close.


Filed under College Football, Political Wankery