Category Archives: It’s Just Bidness

The season is on the line.

If you think college football is a cynical business, then this is quintessential college football, 2020 edition.

Screenshot_2020-08-07 C C Machine on Twitter HOWEVER, the Missouri Valley Conference is allowing its schools to play non-co[...]

Yep, you read that correctly:  the MVC is shutting down conference play for 2020, but if its member schools want to hit the road to pick up that sweet guarantee fee from a P5 foe, more power to ’em.

A one-game season for a paycheck.  It doesn’t get more academic experience than that.


Filed under It's Just Bidness

“I’ve always said it’s the modernization of the scholarship.”

Look who’s changing his tune.

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said he supports requests by Pac-12 players for revenue sharing in college football, as long as it’s tied to graduation.

Swinney has long been a critic of paying college players, but he said Thursday that, among other issues raised by a number of players from both the Big Ten and Pac-12 in open letters demanding changes in college football, he would be in favor of a plan that would offer financial payouts to players upon graduation.

“I’ve always been in favor of giving guys a lump sum,” Swinney said. “I just want to tie it to graduation.”

Sure, Dabo.  And Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia.

If you’re wondering what’s caused his heart to open…

Swinney has been criticized for his outspoken stance against paying players outright; he once suggested he might move to the NFL if college players were paid. However, in recent years he has said that he would be open to payment for name, image and likeness rights, and he said Thursday that Clemson already has hired an outside firm that can help with marketing players should an NIL rule come to pass.

Recruiting is undefeated.


Filed under Clemson: Auburn With A Lake, It's Just Bidness

Thank you for supporting our shitty business model.

And the beat goes on…

Screenshot_2020-08-06 Steve Berkowitz on Twitter Alabama board approves contract for Steve Sarkisian that will increase his[...]

Meanwhile, Wisconsin joins the ranks of Clemson in asking donors to become part of something larger than themselves.

The Wisconsin Badgers are facing a critical financial challenge but we remain committed to our mission of achieving long–term excellence. If the football season is canceled, we are facing a revenue shortfall in excess of $100 million. In the best-case scenario where we’re able to complete a conference–only schedule with limited capacity at home games, we still stand to lose $60–70 million in revenue. Without financial support from our community, the experience we love as Badgers is at risk.

In order to emerge stronger than ever, we are calling our fellow Badgers, who have helped build this extraordinary legacy.

The Badger Legacy campaign aims to do just that: provide an opportunity for all Badgers to play a role in furthering the legacy of Wisconsin Athletics that has been built over many decades. We want to ensure we continue raising trophies, developing student–athletes that make us proud and we keep the world watching when we Jump Around.

… To directly fund our student–athlete services during these challenging times, we are providing season ticket holders the opportunity to reinvest their ticket and seat donation contributions. These resources will go specifically to support scholarships, training and a range of academic and athletic support services for the student–athletes we cheer every game day.

Do it for the kids, yadda, yadda, yadda.  It’s evergreen bullshit.

Meanwhile, Larry Scott is busy propping up his conference’s finances.

The Pac-12 is planning a mammoth loan program that would provide an escape hatch for cash-strapped athletic departments in the event the football season is canceled because of coronavirus, according to internal documents and conference sources.

Football accounts for the majority of each department’s revenue, generating in excess of $50 million dollars in ticket sales and media rights alone.

The loan program would be large enough to cover that loss for each school, if needed:

According to a series of emails obtained by the Hotline through public records requests, the loan would provide a maximum of $83 million for each university at a rate of 3.75 percent over 10 years.

Each athletic department could decide whether it wanted to participate in the program.

If all 12 opted for the maximum amount, the total would be $996 million.

“The conference is trying to be nimble and give schools some options,’’ a source said.

The collateral for the loan is future television revenues.

The point isn’t to mock Scott for doing this — hell, it’s good business to save what you can for a better day — but to point out that, at least for P5 programs, the apocalypse probably isn’t upon us.  And by that I mean the business model that they love isn’t going the way of the dodo any time soon.  Not as long as they’re willing to do it for the kids, anyway.


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

Send in the lawyers

“… prohibitory or governmental authority” notwithstanding, Georgia State is expecting that $1 million guarantee fee, thank you very much, Alabama.

“In 2017, the American Athletic Conference made a unilateral decision to cancel our game against Memphis within weeks of its scheduled date for their independent desire to play more conference games,” Georgia State athletic director Charlie Cobb said in a statement to The Tuscaloosa News. “To their credit, the cancellation fee was paid promptly, primarily recognizing the hardship this last-minute decision placed on us.

“We expect Alabama to do likewise as they have significantly more resources than Memphis.”

Aside from the enforceability of the clause, welshing on a obligation based on something engineered by the organization you belong to is probably not a good look if you want to do business with cupcake programs down the road.


Filed under Alabama, It's Not Easy Being A Mid-Major, It's Just Bidness

Rahm Emanuel, Clemson edition

“You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”

IPTAY, bitchez!

Screenshot_2020-08-04 Woody Whitehurst on Twitter Email from IPTAY overnight essentially asking people not to request a ref[...]

“If you’re hesitant about letting us continue to spend your money like drunken sailors, please, think of the children.”


Filed under Clemson: Auburn With A Lake, It's Just Bidness

Today, in just sayin’

This comes from a member of Congress:


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

“There are many families whose vacation budget is seven weekends in Lincoln.”

I keep looking for stuff about what losing football due to COVID is going to cost college towns.  Here’s something I found in The Athletic ($$) about the hit businesses in Lincoln, Nebraska are expecting to take from less or no Nebraska football fans this season:

The 89,000-plus who pack into the stadium and the thousands more who watch the game from tailgates and bars come from all over. A 2014 study from UNL’s Bureau of Business Research found that 69 percent of fans who attended Husker football games in 2013 traveled to Lincoln from outside the area. And they spent a lot of money.

According to the study, Husker football ticket holders’ off-site spending in Lincoln totaled an estimated $42.9 million for eight 2013 home games, an average of almost $5.4 million per game. Out-of-town visitors accounted for an estimated $4.3 million of that average. Football fans combined to spend nearly $18 million on food and $7 million on lodging during those eight weekends. The study determined the overall impact of Nebraska athletics on the local economy in 2013-14 was an estimated $245.5 million.

One bar owner estimates that the take from Nebraska’s seven home game dates pays the bills for most of the year.  Given what local hotels charge, I can believe it.

But those home games with two-night minimum and even higher rates do make a difference. At Embassy Suites, the cheapest two-night reservation available right now for the Purdue game on Sept. 5 costs $814. At The Kindler, it’s $941.

It’s not pretty.


Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

TFW a “non-profit” business plan is an oxymoron

College athletic departments, you made your own beds.  Now lie in them.


Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

Mickey makes bank.

You should read this article in its entirety, but, the tl;dr version is expressed in these two graphs:

Screenshot_2020-07-26 ESPN’s $793 Million in Ad Sales on the Line With College Football

Screenshot_2020-07-26 ESPN’s $793 Million in Ad Sales on the Line With College Football(2)

Two things:  It may be an understatement to call Disney the 800-pound gorilla in the room and it’s not so hard to understand ESPN’s relentlessness in converting college football into a game where national focus replaces regional appeal.  It’s where the money is.


Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, It's Just Bidness

No justice, no peace

No fans, no game.

There is no room for negotiation on one key point as Atlanta organizers consider multiple contingency plans for three season-opening games during the coronavirus pandemic: Without fans, the games can’t be played in Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl president Gary Stokan, whose organization is making plans for the Florida State-West Virginia, Georgia-Virginia and North Carolina-Auburn kickoff games, says fans must be allowed for the games to be played at the neutral site.

“If there are no fans allowed in the stadium, then we can’t do these games primarily because we only exist in our budget on ticket revenue and sponsor revenues,” Stokan told The Associated Press on Thursday. “All the TV monies are negotiated in a conference package. That money all goes to the conference.”

Sounds like you’ve got a challenge, Greg.


Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness, The Body Is A Temple