Category Archives: Big Ten Football

It’s alive!!


Now you’re just fucking with ’em.


Filed under ACC Football, Big Ten Football, Pac-12 Football

What is this “Alliance” you speak of?


Gee, I hope this doesn’t mess up the CFP expansion talks.

Welcome to the real world, Commissioner Kliavkoff.  “Real world” being the Big Ten, the SEC and then everybody else after them.


Filed under Big Ten Football, Pac-12 Football


Jesus Christ, these people.

How full of yourself do you have to be to pursue something like that?


Filed under Big Ten Football

Lessons from the pandemic

Next time, I can think of a few conferences that will be solemnly swearing not cancelling games is the new “do it for the kids” take.

[Ed. note:  Don’t make me shut down the comments thread, please.]


Filed under Big 12 Football, Big Ten Football, It's Just Bidness, Pac-12 Football, The Body Is A Temple

“And what would the value be to the conference overall?”

The Big Ten brain trust, just like their SEC peers, is wrestling with how to rejigger conference play in the soon to be world of post-divisional college football.  And, sure, just like them, there’s some lip service being paid to what their fans might want and how it would be nice if the member schools faced each other more often.

There’s also Job One ($$).

If there’s a consensus among Big Ten administrators, it’s that any alignment — with or without divisions — should aid the league’s efforts toward College Football Playoff qualification. The current CFP framework includes four teams, and the Big Ten has not qualified more than one team in any of the eight years. The current iteration expires following the 2025 season, and an expanded CFP could include 12 teams.

Minnesota athletics director Mark Coyle said he and his colleagues “have to operate with a sense of urgency” but also want to see how the CFP unfolds before switching formats.

“What I would hate to see is for us to make a series of changes,” Whitman said. “I’m in favor possibly of a single round of changes. But I’d hate for us to make a round of changes now and then the CFP, or whatever succeeds it, makes a change and then we have to make another round of changes. I think our fans, they like tradition, they like predictability. Hopefully, we can get to a point where we can make a decision about whether to make a single round of change and then move forward.”

“We don’t know what the CFP will look like,” Smith said. “Some of us believe there will be expansion. So, what does that mean? The other part of this is we’ve got to be careful because what we’ve built is pretty solid. When you think about the championship game, its attendance and think about our viewership…

“Whatever helps us make the most money” may not qualify as a tradition, but it’s certainly predictable.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Big Ten Football

That’s billion, with a “B”

The Big Ten’s makin’ dollah, y’all.

Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren expects to have an agreement in place on a new media rights deal for the conference in about one month’s time, he told CBS Sports on Monday.

The new deal, which would begin in 2023, could be worth a record-setting $1 billion per season, according to Sports Business Journal, which reported that Fox Sports already has a deal in place to renew its part of the deal.

What does that translate into per team?  This:

A $1 billion annual deal would project to an average of $71 million per school, per year. For now, that would be a record.

“For now”.  As in, wait to see what Sankey is able to renegotiate once Oklahoma and Texas join the SEC.  In any event, these two conferences are on the verge of lapping the field on the money front for at least the rest of the decade.


Filed under Big Ten Football, It's Just Bidness

From the Power 5 to the Super 2

If true, the implications arising from this chart are staggering, to say the least.

If you’re more of a numbers person, here’s how that looks:

I don’t care how clever the folks in the Alliance think they are, there’s nothing they can come up with to overcome that sort of revenue disparity.  In fact, based on that, I question whether the Big Ten will remain on board with the Alliance’s goals. (Judging from that chart and the anticipated revenue bump in 2026, though, they were right to freak out over Oklahoma and Texas jumping ship.)  The SEC’s revenues are projected to double between now and the end of the decade.  Greg Sankey would have been a complete idiot to reject the Sooners’ and Longhorns’ request to join his conference.

And it’s not just about football, either.  The linked article in the NVGT piece notes how SEC schools are starting to employ the same financial approach they’ve taken in football to men’s basketball.

Now, factor in player compensation and you realize that’s an arms race three of those conferences simply can’t maintain.  Those of you bemoaning the death of college football as we’ve known it ain’t seen nothing yet.


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

That’s some Alliance you’ve got there.

There’s one little bit in this ESPN puff piece about the tap dance the ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 are putting on together that gave me a chuckle:

If there is one certainty in collegiate athletics, it’s that change is always occurring, including conference realignment. All three conferences understand that, as each has added teams over the past decade. At least in the short term, the Alliance agreement discourages them from poaching each other. But the leagues didn’t sign a contract.

“If that’s what it takes to get something considerable done, then we’ve lost our way,” Phillips said in August.

In the long term, will the “gentlemen’s agreement” touted when the Alliance was formed actually hold up once another wave of realignment begins?

After what happened to trigger the formation of their “Alliance”, these three can’t even come to a binding arrangement not to raid each other?  Yeah, rock solid, that is.


Filed under ACC Football, Big Ten Football, Pac-12 Football

Spitefully yours

I posted a few days ago about how the collapse (temporary, I know) of the CFP expansion talks was born out of a cut off their nose to spite their face attitude.  Andy Staples ($$) takes that spite to a whole new level with this:

What I hadn’t considered was that the SEC, after spending the past year supporting a format that would have given other leagues some of what they wanted/needed, might simply stop worrying about the other leagues altogether. Sankey seems mad enough to do that.

A 12-team CFP may benefit the SEC more than a four-team CFP. But what might benefit the SEC even more?

Not a College Football Playoff. An SEC playoff.

Andy’s not suggesting that Sankey and his conference turn their backs on the rest of college football completely.  Nah, there are still regular season games to play and if the other kids play nice and want to produce a champion to take on the SEC’s champ, that would probably be cool, too.  Especially when you consider the math.

The difference between that title game and the title game of the 12-team Playoff the leagues just passed on implementing?

The SEC keeps half the money.

The thing is, and with all due respect to Staples, that’s not the ultimate fuck you move Sankey could pull.  That would be to convince the Big Ten to blow off the Alliance and join the SEC as a second super league that produces a national title game between them and only between them.  In the aftermath, I can only imagine the sputtering to come from the Pac-12 and the ACC as USC jumps ship to join the Big Ten and Clemson hops over to the SEC.

Spite, like revenge, is a dish best served cold.  And profitably.


Filed under ACC Football, BCS/Playoffs, Big 12 Football, Big Ten Football, Pac-12 Football, SEC Football

Eyes on the prize

Andy Staples’ one-paragraph tribute to Jim Delany ($$):

Delany caught a lot of heat for trying to stymie the sport’s evolution from the old bowl system to the College Football Playoff, but he was always miscast as being afraid of progress. He was interested in protecting his employer’s corner, and nearly all of his philosophical choices reflected that. We can laugh at his empty threat to take the Big Ten to Division III if athletes were allowed to make more from their role in the enterprise, but Delany never feared progress when progress could make the Big Ten’s schools a boatload of money.

Sounds like Hyman Roth.

I’d laugh about that, except it’s college football fans like me who enabled Delany’s behavior.  And we still are with his successors.


Filed under Big Ten Football, It's Just Bidness