Monday, June 14, 2010

Does Dan Beebe Read CornNation?

Today's news that Texas has recommitted to the Big XII after all certainly is a surprise, considering all that has been said and written in recent days about the future of the conference.  In the end, it was a television deal that turned it all around... and where did that idea first come from?  Oh yes...right here:

But here's the problem. Dan Beebe might not have that much time. By then, the Big Ten may have already picked off one or more teams.  The Pac-10 may as well, forcing the SEC to join in the fun.

No, Dan Beebe is wasting his time trying to talk schools into staying in the Big XII. Even Texas is scouting out their options should the Big XII collapse.
His mission coming out of this week's meetings shouldn't be to convince teams to stay.  His mission needs to make the Big XII difficult to leave. And it all starts with negotiating a new television deal...and that's a process that needs to start now. 
Turns out Harvey Perlman had Texas nailed when he asked University of Texas president Bill Powers to commit the Longhorns' media rights to the conference. Texas refused, and set into motion to the move to the Pac-10.  Only problem is, the Pac-10 was demanding the same thing.  So as things seemed to be moving closer and closer towards Texas' departure, Texas pulled a fast one on the Pac-10, according to John Henderson of the Denver Post:
A source close to the Pac-10's expansion negotiations told The Denver Post that Texas insisted on better revenue sharing and its own network, which essentially killed the deal.
"In the 11th hour, after months of telling us they understand the TV rights, they're trying to pull a fast one on the verge of sealing the deal in the regents meeting," the source said. "They want a better revenue sharing deal and their own network. Those were points of principle. (The Pac-10) wants to treat everyone fairly. It's been that way for months of discussions."
That's right, at the last minute, Texas wanted to bring their rules to the Pac-10...just like they brought their rules to the Big XII fifteen years ago. Except the Pac-10 had the good sense to tell Texas where they could stink those rules.

Enter Dan Beebe, who turns out was actually doing his job, putting together a reasonable deal for the Big XII's next television deal. It looks like after Fox lost out on the ACC deal, they were more than willing to put together a blockbuster deal to keep things from disintegrating.  I've heard reports this includes coverage on local Fox stations nationwide as well as the FSN and FX cable channels.

And with the other nine remaining teams in the Big XII essentially at the whim of their lord and master, Texas is able to have their cake and eat it too.  They get the money they sought by leaving, they get the Longhorn Television Network they coveted, and they retain nine of the eleven serfs they previously claimed.

So everybody's happy.  Nebraska gets a more stable conference arrangement with huge academic benefits.  Colorado gets to pretend they are a California school now (just have to figure out how to pay off the exit fee for the Big XII on top of everything else they can't afford, such as a qualified football coach).  Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, and Iowa State stay in a BCS conference.  And everybody else gets rich, rich, rich.  Some (such as Texas) more than others, of course.

Well, until Texas starts feeling their oats again, or wants something more from the feudal system that is now the Big XII Conference.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice to see that KU and KSU won't get completely jobbed in this deal.

They bet on the wrong sport, picking Bball over football. Just no money in Basketball because of the massive dilution of the sport by every flea bite of a college in the US. By the time Thanksgiving comes, everyone is sick of it until March Madness. The TV money there is happily scooped up by the evil that is the NCAA.

Football is expensive to be done well, that keeps the teams lower in number and the games fewer, so they are more important, and they have more schedulability, so they are easier for fans to watch.