Jump to content
Jon Joseph

THE ALLIANCE. BETTER THAN PLAYOFF AND CONFERENCE EXPANSION?

Recommended Posts

I get the anger at the underhanded manner in which Oklahoma and Texas jilted the B12 in favor of the SEC.

 

I get the anger behind SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey being on the 4 man committee that recommended the playoff (PO) field be expanded to 12 teams while not disclosing the on-going negotiations with Oklahoma and Texas. With B12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby a member of the 4 man committee, 'this' was a stab in the back comparable to, 'Et tu Brute?'

 

But was the ACC, B1G and Pac-12 forming a gentlemen's agreement Alliance in response to Sankey's absence of ethics the correct response for the Pac-12 regarding PO expansion? And was the Pac-12 correct in deciding not to expand the number of conference members 'at this time?' A time when a number of 'left-over' B12 teams reached out to the Pac-12 for admission?

 

PO expansion? Does any conference need the PO field to expand more than does the Pac-12? With the conference one L away from again missing the PO in 2021, that's a rhetorical question.

 

Sure, certain aspects of the expansion proposal were questionable? Why would the 4 ranked conference champs get a bye and not the top 4 ranked teams? How could first round games be played 'up north' in December without millions being spent on winterizing the fields and the stadiums? What would happen to the Rose Bowl? In good conscience how could any 'student-athlete' be asked to possibly play 17 games?  Should Notre Dame be allowed to compete with playing only 12 games and not a 13th champ game? Should a Sun Belt champion that went 12-1 get in the field over a Pac-12 champion with a record of 11-2? With ESPN having exclusive media rights does it make sense to expand now or wait until the current deal expires in 2025? 

 

All good questions. But all capable of debate without throwing the PO expansion baby out with the PO expansion bath water. Typical of CFB's 13 disconnected 'leaders' to tease the fans with PO expansion before nailing down the details.

 

If the PO does not expand before 2026, how will the delay possibly help the Pac-12 and the Pac-12's bottom line? 1 extra OOC game a season vs an ACC or B1G team is not going to materially improve the Pac-12's financial position.

 

No expansion for the Pac-12 'at this time.'  Was this the correct decision when considering the down-the-road strategic issues? 

 

Tactically, why add any team that will not immediately contribute to the bottom line? But having made this decision where does the Pac-12 go if it decides to expand in the future?

 

BYU, Cincinnati, Houston and UCF are joining the B12 which will take the conference along with the 8 remaining schools to a mathematically correct 12 teams. I fully expect with these additions that the B12 will retain its P5 status.

 

Strategically, the Pac-12 by not adding say, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Baylor, TCU, Houston and Kansas failed to take out a major competitor, failed to move into another time zone, failed to pick up a number of teams in big media markets and teams in smaller markets that have a larger following than most Pac-12 teams, failed to provide the opportunity for the functionally insolvent Pac-12 Network to add millions of subscribers, to get up on DirecTV and have the income to act like a real instead of a jv network, and failed to move directly into the fertile Texas recruiting grounds. I also note that none of the suggested teams are lightweights in basketball and in non-revenue sports.

 

Further, by the Pac-12's own admission before deciding not to expand 'at this time,' AAU membership was not a requirement for Pac-12 membership.

 

So, the Pac-12 gains an extra P5 OOC game when it already cannot get a team into the PO? Leaves the B12 in play as a competitor. Does nothing to improve the bottom line down the road. And has nowhere left to go should the conference decide to expand in the future.

 

IMO, deferring a PO field expansion to an unknown time and standing pat at 12 teams were both Larry-like decisions. Decisions that will not pan out in the long run. Decisions that leave the conference on unstable financial ground.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 12:57 PM, Jon Joseph said:

Sure, certain aspects of the expansion proposal were questionable? Why would the 4 ranked conference champs get a bye and not the top 4 ranked teams? How could first round games be played 'up north' in December without millions being spent on winterizing the fields and the stadiums? What would happen to the Rose Bowl? In good conscience how could any 'student-athlete' be asked to possibly play 17 games? 

 

Should Notre Dame be allowed to compete with playing only 12 games and not a 13th champ game? Should a Sun Belt champion that went 12-1 get in the field over a Pac-12 champion with a record of 11-2? With ESPN having exclusive media rights does it make sense to expand now or wait until the current deal expires in 2025? 

 

Whew!  Jon you make great points and ask the tough questions...that we are not getting answers to.  Larry-like behavior indeed!

Mr. FishDuck

Link to post
Share on other sites

Good points JJ. 

I think the issue of expansion came up too fast on a new commissioner who hadn't had time to get to know his people. In that case, putting off a decision is better than rushing into one you may regret.

Also, dealing with presidents and chancellors with different alumni bases might take awhile to "work the room" and find out where everyone stands.

 

IMHO, the best part of the alliance is not the 1 extra OOC game but the voting block power. This alliance effectively puts disney and the SEC in check. To me that's worth it all.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 4:21 PM, DanLduck said:

Good points JJ. 

I think the issue of expansion came up too fast on a new commissioner who hadn't had time to get to know his people. In that case, putting off a decision is better than rushing into one you may regret.

Also, dealing with presidents and chancellors with different alumni bases might take awhile to "work the room" and find out where everyone stands.

 

IMHO, the best part of the alliance is not the 1 extra OOC game but the voting block power. This alliance effectively puts disney and the SEC in check. To me that's worth it all.

 

Delay with negotiation, fine. Delay without a going-forward plan, the Alliance did not offer as a counter-proposal, seems to me to be obstructionist for the reason only of being obstructionist.

 

Put the brakes on Disney's exclusive broadcast rights? I get. But does that curtail negotiating with Disney before the current deal expires? 

 

And if Disney was not willing to budge, if you expanded the PO field in 2023 and showed the viewership numbers sure to follow, would you not be preparing an improved product to be offered for bid in 2026? 

 

My guess? In order to assure an oar in the water come 2026 Disney would have been willing to negotiate now?

 

I think arguably 'logical' decisions now may well not be so logical down the road. CFB is a big time business. In big time business if you have a 1 year plan vs a 5 year plan? Good luck.

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 4:19 PM, Charles Fischer said:

 

Whew!  Jon you make great points and ask the tough questions...that we are not getting answers to.  Larry-like behavior indeed!

 

Thanks Charles. Leadership that is reactionary rarely overcomes leadership that has a cogent, forward-looking plan.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't believe the President's recognize the danger they are in.  In my opinion these guys think they're the brightest lightbulbs in the room .

 

The PAC12 is playing by 2012 "rules".  Disney is playing for keeps.  Fox has a good foothold with the BIG, but not enough leverage to counter Disney completely.  

 

Demographically, the PAC12 it's out in the cold because it's audience deems other things  more important.  I don't believe these constituents really care about football and basketball.  And I believe the President's feel the same.  

 

I actually believe these "leaders" tolerate sports as a necessary evil.  They have more important issues on their minds.  Hence, they react to events instead of strategizing future scenarios.  

 

It will take the threat of complete failure to recognize the cognitive dissonance they suffer from. 

  • Thumbs Up 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it was the right decision.

 

Kept ESPN from monopolizing the playoffs with no competitive bidding from Fox or CBS.

 

12 teams is a bad idea:  1) the 4 teams that get a bye are at a huge advantage; 2) the SEC would put a minimum of 3 teams in each year.  Have you seen the way they schedule so that the haves play the have-nots every year and cannibalization is very rare where a top team in the East plays a top team from the West.  Then they add in TX and OK which will be middle of the road kill for the upper teams.  Lastly, when 8+ teams from the SEC are in the top 25 to start the year, it takes at least 2 Ls to get them out. 

 

The Alliance kept the leagues from raiding each other and does set up some better matchups which will lead to more $$.  

 

The expansion of the playoffs will happen and now the Alliance controls the number and the automatic bids.

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 5:58 PM, Mike West said:

I don't believe the President's recognize the danger they are in.  In my opinion these guys think they're the brightest lightbulbs in the room .

 

The PAC12 is playing by 2012 "rules".  Disney is playing for keeps.  Fox has a good foothold with the BIG, but not enough leverage to counter Disney completely.  

 

Demographically, the PAC12 it's out in the cold because it's audience deems other things  more important.  I don't believe these constituents really care about football and basketball.  And I believe the President's feel the same.  

 

I actually believe these "leaders" tolerate sports as a necessary evil.  They have more important issues on their minds.  Hence, they react to events instead of strategizing future scenarios.  

 

It will take the threat of complete failure to recognize the cognitive dissonance they suffer from. 

 

Mike, I couldn't agree more. The Pac-12 was once on an island that had the best treasure, the Rose Bowl

 

Now? It's on an island that is no longer a destination point for CFB heavyweights and the best home-grown CFB recruits. And the treasure is only a treasure once every 3 years. And in the 3rd year you are more than likely to not see a Pac-12 team playing in Pasadena.

 

The ostrich 'leadership' carries on post-Larry. Leadership that doesn't know, doesn't care, or both? I believe that at least half of the Pac-12 leaders would be happy to see the Pac-12 become the Ivy League West?

 

Want to stop the Disney/ ESPN/ SEC hegemony of CFB? Fine. But what is the alternative plan? To add 1 P5 OOC game? 

 

To wait to 'score' a new media deal that has no chance to come close to the B1G/SEC deals? 

 

To sit still on expansion when the time was more than ripe? Any business person would have taken the opportunity to gut a competitor; to put a competitor away.

 

But as you so noted and as I echoed above, the Pac-12 is run by academics who see business as being somehow beneath them.

 

Time and tide wait for no man.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to pile on. Because of mergers in the rental car business this is not a perfect comparison but it is close.

 

Based on money distributed to each member team:

 

1. B!G - Hertz

 

2. SEC - Avis - trying harder by weakening Budget.

 

3. Pac-12 - National

 

4. Big 12 - Budget

 

5. ACC - But for 1 franchise, Rent-A-Wreck

 

You are the CEO of National. Budget at the impetus of Avis, implodes. Do you pick up the pieces of Budget and wipe out a major competitor while Avis improves its position; or, do you let Budget reorganize and re-group and thereby allow it to remain as a viable competitor?

 

If you decide on the later, please do not bother to apply to Harvard Business School.

 

 

  • Haha 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 12:57 PM, Jon Joseph said:

I get the anger at the underhanded manner in which Oklahoma and Texas jilted the B12 in favor of the SEC.

 

I get the anger behind SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey being on the 4 man committee that recommended the playoff (PO) field be expanded to 12 teams while not disclosing the on-going negotiations with Oklahoma and Texas. With B12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby a member of the 4 man committee, 'this' was a stab in the back comparable to, 'Et tu Brute?'

 

But was the ACC, B1G and Pac-12 forming a gentlemen's agreement Alliance in response to Sankey's absence of ethics the correct response for the Pac-12 regarding PO expansion? And was the Pac-12 correct in deciding not to expand the number of conference members 'at this time?' A time when a number of 'left-over' B12 teams reached out to the Pac-12 for admission?

 

PO expansion? Does any conference need the PO field to expand more than does the Pac-12? With the conference one L away from again missing the PO in 2021, that's a rhetorical question.

 

Sure, certain aspects of the expansion proposal were questionable? Why would the 4 ranked conference champs get a bye and not the top 4 ranked teams? How could first round games be played 'up north' in December without millions being spent on winterizing the fields and the stadiums? What would happen to the Rose Bowl? In good conscience how could any 'student-athlete' be asked to possibly play 17 games?  Should Notre Dame be allowed to compete with playing only 12 games and not a 13th champ game? Should a Sun Belt champion that went 12-1 get in the field over a Pac-12 champion with a record of 11-2? With ESPN having exclusive media rights does it make sense to expand now or wait until the current deal expires in 2025? 

 

All good questions. But all capable of debate without throwing the PO expansion baby out with the PO expansion bath water. Typical of CFB's 13 disconnected 'leaders' to tease the fans with PO expansion before nailing down the details.

 

If the PO does not expand before 2026, how will the delay possibly help the Pac-12 and the Pac-12's bottom line? 1 extra OOC game a season vs an ACC or B1G team is not going to materially improve the Pac-12's financial position.

 

No expansion for the Pac-12 'at this time.'  Was this the correct decision when considering the down-the-road strategic issues? 

 

Tactically, why add any team that will not immediately contribute to the bottom line? But having made this decision where does the Pac-12 go if it decides to expand in the future?

 

BYU, Cincinnati, Houston and UCF are joining the B12 which will take the conference along with the 8 remaining schools to a mathematically correct 12 teams. I fully expect with these additions that the B12 will retain its P5 status.

 

Strategically, the Pac-12 by not adding say, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Baylor, TCU, Houston and Kansas failed to take out a major competitor, failed to move into another time zone, failed to pick up a number of teams in big media markets and teams in smaller markets that have a larger following than most Pac-12 teams, failed to provide the opportunity for the functionally insolvent Pac-12 Network to add millions of subscribers, to get up on DirecTV and have the income to act like a real instead of a jv network, and failed to move directly into the fertile Texas recruiting grounds. I also note that none of the suggested teams are lightweights in basketball and in non-revenue sports.

 

Further, by the Pac-12's own admission before deciding not to expand 'at this time,' AAU membership was not a requirement for Pac-12 membership.

 

So, the Pac-12 gains an extra P5 OOC game when it already cannot get a team into the PO? Leaves the B12 in play as a competitor. Does nothing to improve the bottom line down the road. And has nowhere left to go should the conference decide to expand in the future.

 

IMO, deferring a PO field expansion to an unknown time and standing pat at 12 teams were both Larry-like decisions. Decisions that will not pan out in the long run. Decisions that leave the conference on unstable financial ground.

 

 

I'll vote for you to become assistant Pac12 commish. Where do I sign.😉

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 7:54 PM, DanLduck said:

I'll vote for you to become assistant Pac12 commish. Where do I sign.😉

 

Please, do not sign anything. I am too long in tooth and still trying to shoot my age on the golf course, at the end of 18 holes and not before.

 

I just wish that a board of directors who like it or not, understand that they are managing a big business and would act like businesspeople.

 

At the very least GK should have announced that SFO HQs are gone as soon as the business details can be resolved. And if you are not going to expand the conference, BK the insolvent network or open negotiations back up for ESPN or with FOX, for a media entity to take control of the network's operation and distribution.

 

The very existence of the conference as a meaningful big time football conference is on the line and the best that these guys can do is play a pat hand? Adding 1 P5 OOC game a year is playing a pat hand. Staying as is with the BCS x 2 is playing a pat hand. Staying at 12 when there were long term beneficial expansion candidates begging to join the conference is playing a pat hand.

 

And if you are opposed to an expanded playoff than why does it take more than 1 meeting to decide in 2022 to play 8 regular season games, dump divisions and play a 9th conference game on championship weekend.

 

The SEC since Roy Kramer has been managed like a business. The Pac-12? Far from it.

 

Mario's performance and the teams play does of course matter. But in the long run the financial viability of the conference matters far more.

 

If GK and his bosses believe that CFB still cycles and the Pac-12 will return as is to be again amongst the dominant football conferences they are ignoring recruiting # and the # that are watching Pac-12 games.

 

On a more micro level, does it continue to make sense for Oregon to give an equal share of the pie to member schools who refuse to or cannot, find the money to compete at the top level of CFB? I know this question is being asked by SC.

 

Instead of destroying the B12 as P5 competitor the Pac-12 has put the B12 in a position to possibly poach Pac-12 teams. If SC was to demand a bigger piece of the pie Bob Bowlsby would at least have to listen, no?  I have cried wolf before but this time the wolf is at the door.

 

What's the end game? The B1G is not coming to the rescue of 12 Pac-12 schools. The new media deal will be significantly eclipsed by the B1G and SEC deals.

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 6:41 PM, Jon Joseph said:

 

Please, do not sign anything. I am too long in tooth and still trying to shoot my age on the golf course, at the end of 18 holes and not before.

 

I just wish that a board of directors who like it or not, understand that they are managing a big business and would act like businesspeople.

 

At the very least GK should have announced that SFO HQs are gone as soon as the business details can be resolved. And if you are not going to expand the conference, BK the insolvent network or open negotiations back up for ESPN or with FOX, for a media entity to take control of the network's operation and distribution.

 

The very existence of the conference as a meaningful big time football conference is on the line and the best that these guys can do is play a pat hand? Adding 1 P5 OOC game a year is playing a pat hand. Staying as is with the BCS x 2 is playing a pat hand. Staying at 12 when there were long term beneficial expansion candidates begging to join the conference is playing a pat hand.

 

And if you are opposed to an expanded playoff than why does it take more than 1 meeting to decide in 2022 to play 8 regular season games, dump divisions and play a 9th conference game on championship weekend.

 

The SEC since Roy Kramer has been managed like a business. The Pac-12? Far from it.

 

Mario's performance and the teams play does of course matter. But in the long run the financial viability of the conference matters far more.

 

If GK and his bosses believe that CFB still cycles and the Pac-12 will return as is to be again amongst the dominant football conferences they are ignoring recruiting # and the # that are watching Pac-12 games.

 

On a more micro level, does it continue to make sense for Oregon to give an equal share of the pie to member schools who refuse to or cannot, find the money to compete at the top level of CFB? I know this question is being asked by SC.

 

Instead of destroying the B12 as P5 competitor the Pac-12 has put the B12 in a position to possibly poach Pac-12 teams. If SC was to demand a bigger piece of the pie Bob Bowlsby would at least have to listen, no?  I have cried wolf before but this time the wolf is at the door.

 

What's the end game? The B1G is not coming to the rescue of 12 Pac-12 schools. The new media deal will be significantly eclipsed by the B1G and SEC deals.

I hope your prophetic wisdom doesn't come to fruition. But you do make a rational argument. 

Though your 12-1 projection for the season I can live with. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 10/20/2021 at 6:41 PM, Jon Joseph said:

Please, do not sign anything. I am too long in tooth and still trying to shoot my age on the golf course, at the end of 18 holes and not before.

 

All your serious thoughts and yet you make me laugh often...

Mr. FishDuck

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



×
×
  • Create New...
Top