Category Archives: Big 12 Football

Mickey giveth and Mickey taketh away.

From a lookback at Missouri’s move to the SEC:

Seven and a half years ago, a single television network broke the Big 12 for good. Years of infighting and disdain for the league’s self-appointed leader, the University of Texas, had laid the foundation. As the Longhorns reaped the benefits of one-sided media contracts, their conference counterparts fell further behind. Texas was one of the first three schools nationwide to amass more than $100 million in athletics revenue in a single fiscal year in 2006; no other Big 12 program, save for Oklahoma State, which in 2006 received a $165 million gift from booster T. Boone Pickens, hit that mark until 2010.

When news surfaced of Texas’ potentially eschewing a league-wide television network in favor of an exclusive 20-year, $300 million deal with ESPN that featured a channel devoted solely to the Longhorns, its league partners had enough. Colorado, an original member of the Big Eight, left for the Pac-12 in June 2010. Nebraska escaped to the Big Ten soon after; and with the threat of the league’s implosion looming, Texas A&M, which had nearly bolted for the Pac-12 a year earlier, announced its move to the SEC in late August 2011.

Left to decide its own fate was Missouri. Two years earlier, Missouri governor Jay Nixon had floated the idea of a move to the Big Ten. But an offer never came, and Missouri stayed in the Big 12, the league it helped found 15 years earlier.

Days after Texas A&M’s announcement and an unsuccessful last-ditch attempt to convince the Aggies to stay, then-Missouri athletic director Mike Alden, Chancellor Brady Deaton, Interim System President Steve Owens and Interim General Counsel Phil Hoskins met on a roof atop the press box during Missouri’s season-opening game at Memorial Stadium to assess the school’s future. They determined a future in the Big 12, or at least what was left of it, wasn’t viable. Two months later, Missouri became the 14th member of the Southeastern Conference.

How fortunate for the Tigers the very same broadcast entity that drove them from one conference was willing to finance Mike Slive’s expansion power play that in turn provided them with a convenient landing spot.  “When one door closes, another one opens” may be a cliché, but when you’ve got the same doorman working both, that’s real power.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, ESPN Is The Devil, SEC Football

Looking for “a dead hooker … in [Coach Beaty’s] closet.”

One of life’s small mysteries for me is why people continue to think Kansas AD Jeff Long is one of the leading lights of his profession.  Throwing money at Bobby Petrino isn’t some act of genius, and that seems to be the high water mark of his career.

Now he’s gotten his school in a pissing match with the football coach he just fired, and it’s not likely to end well.

When Kansas fired head football coach David Beaty in November, the school said it would fulfill the terms of his contract, which called for a $3 million buyout if Beaty was fired without cause.

On Tuesday afternoon, Beaty filed a lawsuit alleging KU has not paid any of that buyout, even after the former coach agreed to meet with NCAA investigators after Kansas informed Beaty of a “potential” violation the school identified during his time as head coach.

The suit also says Kansas athletic director Jeff Long and “at least one other senior Kansas Athletics official” openly discussed needing to “find something” to void Beaty’s buyout, such as, in the suit’s words, “a dead hooker … in [Coach Beaty’s] closet.”

The lawsuit, filed by Beaty’s representatives in federal district court in Kansas, alleges KU first contacted Beaty in December to formally deny previously agreed-upon monthly payments of $500,000 over six months. According to the suit, the school told Beaty the reason for paying his $3 million buyout was “a self-initiated NCAA investigation being conducted — not by the NCAA — but by Kansas Athletics’ corporate counsel looking into impropriety involving a former assistant coach.”

Well, that’s one way to try to weasel out of a $3 million check.

The timeline’s kind of fun to follow here.  First, Beaty is terminated on November 24.  Less than a week later, he received a memo from Long confirming that he was “terminated without cause effective November 24, 2018. All liquidated damages payments owed to you will be paid out consistent with Section 12 of your current amended Employment Agreement and Section 7 (D) of your current amended Professional Services Agreement.”

Then comes December 14, and Beaty receives a letter from Kansas’ general counsel, notifying him that the school was conducting an internal investigation about possible NCAA rules violations conducted by a member of his staff.  And while Kansas didn’t respond to numerous requests from Beaty about the specifics, that hasn’t stopped the school from notifying the conference and the NCAA about the allegation.

According to Beaty’s lawyers, Kansas has gone scorched earth.

The suit states that Kansas has been “more than willing to notify prospective employers that Coach Beaty is the subject of a NCAA investigation.”

That’s awfully nice of Kansas.  So is this official statement.

The University of Kansas is aware of a court filing submitted by attorneys of former Head Football Coach David Beaty. While the university typically does not comment on pending litigation, the nature of the current matter warrants further context.

The filing is full of false claims and factual misstatements, including that KU’s Director of Athletics made salacious comments about seeking reasons to withhold payment from Beaty. Simply, that did not happen.

Here are the facts. Beaty was informed he would not be retained by KU on November 4, 2018, but would be able to coach the remaining games. Immediately following the end of the season, Kansas Athletics staff conducted standard exit interviews of all football coaches and staff, and through that process we learned of possible NCAA violations allegedly committed by Beaty. KU contacted the NCAA and the Big 12 Conference and began an investigation into the matter. Beaty refused to cooperate with the KU review and, ultimately, the NCAA took the lead in the still-ongoing investigation.

Due to the nature of the allegations, which, if true, would be in violation of the terms of Beaty’s contract, the university has withheld payment of money owed to Beaty pending the outcome of the NCAA investigation. In a show of good faith, the university has placed the full amount owed in escrow.

While disappointed in the court filing, the university is committed to seeking the truth and upholding our high standards of ethical conduct.

You can stop chuckling now.  What’s impressive here, as you may have noticed, is that Beaty’s suit has caused the school to admit to possible NCAA violations, which should make for a lot of fun in discovery.  Not that this is going to get anywhere near the point of Jeff Long sitting for questions under oath.  Either the NCAA comes up with something relatively quickly, or Kansas settles, probably for an amount north of the buy out.  (Beaty’s lawyers aren’t gonna pay themselves, after all.)

Yeah, that Jeff Long is brilliant.

Of course, no story about an NCAA investigation would be complete without this:

An NCAA spokesperson, Stacey Osburn, said in a statement to SB Nation: “We cannot comment on current, pending or potential investigations.”

Should Kansas part ways with Jeff Long some day — hey, parting is what Kansas does — they could do a lot worse than hiring Stacey.  At least she knows when to keep her mouth shut.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, See You In Court, The NCAA

That’s why they pay him the big bucks.

What kind of nit wit thinks that the Big 12’s best path for strengthening itself would be to throw its fate in with Larry Scott?

Jon Wefald, who ran Kansas State for 23 years — he hired Bill Snyder — said he devised the strategic alliance after being asked by current West Virginia president Gordon Gee, in the fall of 2017, to consider ways to “strengthen” the Big 12…

Gee called the proposal “brilliant,’’ according to Wefald…

Oh.  Never mind.

It’s like there’s this massive conspiracy to make sure Scott really is the smartest guy in the room.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, It's Just Bidness, Pac-12 Football

Et tu, broadcast partner?

Is this good?  I don’t think this is good.

The Big 12 is in the marketplace with three of its conference championship football games, including one that kicks off in just 11 months.

The conference has been shopping the 2019, 2021 and 2023 games to media companies over the last several months after Fox told Big 12 officials that it was not interested.

The Big 12 had hoped that Fox, one of its two primary media partners, would pick up the rights to the championship games in the odd-numbered years. Fox carried the 2017 game as part of a mediated settlement around conference expansion, paying about $25 million for its rights. But the network and the conference could not come to terms on the other three available games. Sources said the last offer made to Fox valued the game in the high teens.

Maybe slapping a conference title game on after a round robin regular season schedule for the purpose of getting that last bit of selection committee attention isn’t such a great marketing strategy.

These guys keep telling themselves they’re geniuses despite all evidence to the contrary.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, Fox Sports Numbs My Brain, It's Just Bidness

Today, in sweating the small stuff

Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby, a tower of rectitude, demanded a public apology from a Texas player.  Why?  Because he acted like a fan.

Hager was told that Kansas put up 40 points and 524 yards on the No. 6 Oklahoma Sooners while the Longhorns were playing, to which Hager quipped: “Hey, OU has no defense.”

He followed that up by pointing at a clock and saying: “And what time is it? It’s 11:12, and OU still sucks.”

First off, let me just say as a Georgia fan that a Texas player making a clock reference like that is both ironic and hilarious.  But I digress.

Where I really want to go is wishing that Bowlsby had been half as huffy about the Baylor situation as he’s been about some kid poking a little fun at a rival.  Of course, there’s no money involved with Hager, so I guess it’s easier for Big Bob.

The Big 12 still sucks, in other words.

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Filed under Big 12 Football

Monday morning buffet

With my Internet access at work down for almost a week, I had a bunch of stuff parked that I couldn’t post, so it’s time to sweep out the ashes.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Big 12 Football, Georgia Football, SEC Football, Strategery And Mechanics, What's Bet In Vegas Stays In Vegas, Wit And Wisdom From The Hat

Horns down

Typical SEC fan:  Man, wasn’t it bullshit when SEC refs would flag opposing players for doing the Gator chomp while letting Tebow show his ass with that all the damned time?

Big 12 officials:  Son, hold our beers.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, Texas Is Just Better Than You Are.