It just costs more.

Interesting catch from Kristi Dosh:

Imagine my surprise as I was reviewing conference distribution policies to write about the College Football Playoff payouts and stumbled across a new section about withdrawing from the conference complete with a new exit fee. According to the SEC’s 2021-22 Bylaws, the new language was adopted January 14, 2021.

The additions to Section 3 of the conference bylaws begin with a requirement to give at least two years’ notice:

*3.1.4 Withdrawal from Membership. A member may only withdraw from membership in the Conference after providing written notice to the President and the Commissioner of the date of its withdrawal at least two years prior to the date on which the withdrawal will be effective. The withdrawal notice must specify a withdrawal date of July 15 in the year in which the withdrawal will be effective. [Adopted: 1/14/21]

The biggest change of all though is the whopping $30-45 million exit fee the conference will now impose. Here is that section in full:


*3.2.1 Obligation to Pay Withdrawal Fee. A member that provides notice of withdrawal from the Conference as required by Section 3.1.4 shall pay a withdrawal fee to the Conference of $30 million on or before the effective date of the withdrawal. [Adopted: 1/14/21]

*3.2.2 Additional Withdrawal Fee. A member that withdraws from the Conference without providing notice of withdrawal as required by Section 3.1.4 shall pay a withdrawal fee of $40 million to the Conference immediately upon providing notice of withdrawal (or if no notice is provided, as of the effective date of such withdrawal). [Adopted: 1/14/21]

*3.2.3 Withdrawal Fee—Member Deemed to Have Withdrawn. A member deemed to have withdrawn from the Conference shall pay a withdrawal fee of $45 million to the Conference immediately upon being informed that the Commissioner has determined that the member is deemed to have withdrawn. [Adopted: 1/14/21]

*3.2.4 Reduction of Distributions to Withdrawing Member. The Commissioner may, at any time (including prior to the effective date of any withdrawal or deemed withdrawal), reduce any distributions otherwise payable to a member that has provided notice of withdrawal or who has been deemed to have withdrawn, including but not limited to distributions otherwise provided for in Bylaw 31, and apply such distributions to the withdrawal fee payable by the member to the Conference. [Adopted: 1/14/21]

Did Greg Sankey suddenly develop a raging case of insecurity?  Or are they just making it harder for Texas and Oklahoma to jump ship (again)?

Nah.  They’re just protecting an investment.

… sources at two SEC schools suggested the changes were made as a result of supplemental distributions the conference made to help cover costs during the pandemic.

The SEC office confirmed the change was made due to the supplemental distributions.

“The adjustments made to SEC Bylaws in January 2021 were related to securing and distributing supplemental income to SEC members to help mitigate the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on SEC athletics programs as announced in May. SEC presidents and chancellors unanimously approved the bylaw change,” said Herb Vincent, the SEC Associate Commissioner for Communications.

Not that I think anybody was contemplating departure to pocket that sweet advance money…



Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

16 responses to “It just costs more.

  1. dawg100

    Did UGA ever get any insurance or other type of fees for the Vandy cancellation?


    • Down Island Way

      UGA football told vandy to just lay there, don’t move, we’ll let you know when we’re done with the scoreboard…


  2. J.R. Clark

    Sankey covering all potential scenarios with regard to Texas.


    • theotherdoug

      Yeah, I think the Texas boosters are going to get restless 5 years into playing in the SEC. Barring some sort of miracle they’re very likely to be a middle of the pack team, and we all know that won’t work for Texas.


  3. Texas Dawg

    Was there anything in there about expulsion?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. David D

    Can the SEC retroactively send Georgia Tech a bill? Askin’ for a friend…


  5. W Cobb Dawg

    You’d think the sec would make it easy for at least a couple teams to leave (looking at you mizzou).

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ran A

    I think they would waive the fee for weaker programs quite honestly. But why would a weaker program leave, with the cash windfall that comes in each year. They will happily take some beatings to receive $50MM or so for their athletic programs, where Vandy just pocketed most of the money and put it in other places for the last 20 years. They are just now starting to truly invest into their facilities. You get the feeling the conference quietly told them that they either start investing or look for another conference to play in. This is if one of the bigger names schools left. Or lets say that Texas and Oklahoma comes over and decides that they do not like the lack of ‘sway’ they use to have or their teams getting beat up (especially in football) or a combination there of. You don’t get to just test the waters and leave – you have to pay an exit fee. Personally, I think it should match the average ‘share’ received in the previous 3 years of income received from the conference, since that number will do nothing but continue to climb.


    • originaluglydawg

      Yep. We’re never going to get rid of Vandy (I hope in a few years we’ll feel this way about Florida). Conference would be much money ahead to pay them to go and replace them with a cash generating program and one that is fun to boot. (WV comes to mind)


  7. whb209

    Vandy is going no where. They are a founding member of the SEC.
    Now this rule, which I do not understand, could be used to good effect on some schools (teams) that have pissed me off.
    3.2.3 Withdrawal Fee—Member Deemed to Have Withdrawn
    What does rule 3.2.3 even mean and how can I use it to screw with undesirables ?