SOUTH BEND, IN - SEPTEMBER 03: Tyler Eifert #80 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish is pursued by Sam Barrington #36 of the University of South Florida Bulls at Notre Dame Stadium on September 3, 2011 in South Bend, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
4 Total Updates since August 6, 2012
10 months ago Update 6 comments
NBC has a deal with Notre Dame football for the next three years. It doesn't have a whole lot of football to pair with its Notre Dame football. Pretty much the only big league football available is the Big East's, so that idea about NBC packaging its entire Saturdays around the Irish by picking up the Big East could mean a big payoff for the somewhat forgotten power conference:
Sources suggest that if NBC, which is desperate for sports inventory, signs a TV contract with the conference, it would be willing to pay the Big East football teams $10 milllion apiece and throw in an additional $4 million for the 16 basketball schools. One of the network's ideas may be to run a full day of Big East football, along with Notre Dame home games, from noon to midnight Saturdays on either NBC or its still-growing cable channel.
That $14 million would come in just shy of what the ACC was able to get for its own full members, but that's not all:
Carparelli is the Big East's senior associate commissioner, and he's apparently feeling confident enough in the Big East's chances of landing a good deal to make some waves ahead of time. By "exceeding" the "value" of the ACC's deal, he's counting the exposure that would come with preceding and following Notre Dame as greater than the exposure the ACC is getting, which will often mean ESPN3.com games.
12 months ago Update 2 comments
While estimation-prone types ponder whether the impending Big East television deal will be worth way less than the league once hoped or just a little bit less, the conference itself could be using its unique relationship with Notre Dame as a handy bargaining chip.
The Irish are members in all sports except for football, of course. This means their relatively valuable basketball program boosts the Big East, but Memphis Athletic Director R.C. Johnson describes how NBC is thinking bigger:
"(NBC's) purpose (at the meeting) was to show they had an interest in the Big East and they had it tied in with Notre Dame football," Johnson said. "They talked about doubleheaders and tripleheaders on the NBC station. Not on the Versus or whatever they all have, NBC (Sports Network), because they've got several cable outlets.
"They talked about how they liked the time zones and they talked about tying in doubleheaders and tripleheaders on Saturday with football."
ESPN gets the first crack at the Big East's top games, while NBC will likely emerge as a contender if the conference doesn't sell all its stock to ESPN. With the league's truly national footprint, NBC wouldn't have a hard time creating an entire day's worth of college football programming, from the East Coast to Notre Dame to Boise State.
Of course, there's the question of what happens in 2015, when Notre Dame's NBC contract is up and the Irish could very well join a conference in full (which won't be the Big East).
about 1 year ago Update 0 comments
The Big East is nearing a window to renegotiate its television deal, and the conference hopes it will result in a large gain in revenue. However, there's an issue for the conference as the negotiation window inches closer: Realignment has changed the landscape of the conference and college football as a whole. And according to a CBS Sports report, the Big East may take a significant hit as a result.
A year ago, the Big East was offered a deal worth $130 million per year. The conference turned it down. And while some analysts expect a similar deal this time around, CBS Sports' sources aren't so high on the conference's chances of snagging a big deal. In fact, it could be somewhere around half the deal the Big East was offered last year.
A $130 million deal per year (as speculated by Pilson) would be worth $8.66 million each for the 10 full members; $6.5 million each for the four football-only members (Boise State, San Diego State, Navy and TBA); and $2.16 million each for the eight non-football members.
A $60 million deal per year (as speculated by CBSSports.com's sources, slightly better than their low end) would be worth $4 million each for the 10 full members; $3 million each to the four football-only members; and $1 million each to the eight non-football members.
To put these numbers in perspective, consider that Nick Saban will make an average of just about $5.6 million a year over the next eight years. Mack Brown also tops the $5 million a year mark and Bob Stoops is just above $4 million. It's likely that Les Miles will make more than $4 million this coming year, as well.
Sure, these are top-end coaches, but they're also making more than full-member schools of the Big East Conference will, should the next television deal come in around the $60 million a year mark. And with television revenue skyrocketing elsewhere, a low-end deal would put the Big East in an awfully difficult position.
Take the Pac-12, for instance. Its new deal has paid immediate dividends: Multiple schools have been able to move forward with facilities upgrades, while others have hired high-profile coaches in the past few months. Perennial revenue bottom-feeder Washington State was able to hire Mike Leach at a salary of more than $2 million per year, thanks to the new deal that will net schools somewhere in the neighborhood of $20 million annually once the Pac-12 Network is up and running.
A poor deal could be crippling for the Big East and, making matters worse, the vultures may also be circling, waiting to pick off schools should realignment kick into high gear again this summer.
For more news and information regarding the Big East, please visit Big East Coast Bias.
over 1 year ago Update 0 comments
The BYU Cougars were expected to join the Big East Conference as recently as last week. Now, Brett McMurphy is reporting that it is "unlikely" BYU will still join due to a disagreement over television rights.
Unless BYU decides to relinquish its television rights for its home football games, the Cougars likely will not join the Big East, college football industry sources told CBSSports.com.
"I doubt BYU will happen," a college football industry source told CBSSports.com. "They are being extremely unreasonable all of a sudden. This is one reason why they did not get into the Big 12. Their general counsel (lawyers) is a piece of work."
It is unheard of for a school to retain ownership of their home television rights when joining another conference and no schools in any of the BCS AQ conferences currently do so. BYU is in its first year as an independent after leaving the Mountain West and signed an eight-year deal with ESPN last year. That deal would have to be reworked.
According to McMurphy, all of the Big East's expansion plans are on hold until this matter is settled, one way or another. Boise State will not join the conference unless they have a Western partner. Air Force has been said to be considering remaining where they are and Navy is waiting to see how things unfold.
San Diego State is rumored to be a possibility as well. Which, in a way, would complete the insane redistricting of a conference with the word "East" in its title perfectly.
For more on the Cougars, visit BYU blog Vanquish the Foe. For more on the Big East, head to Big East Coast Bias. For more on the conference expansion whirlwind, check out our conference realigment coverage.
over 1 year ago Update 3 comments
The outward reason that the Big East doesn't want the West Virginia Mountaineers (or the Syracuse Orange or Pittsburgh Panthers) to leave before the contracted 27-month waiting period is because they don't want to be stuck with a five-team football conference come 2012.
The much-more obvious reason that hasn't been talked about enough is the financial one. Namely, the clause in the conference's TV contract with ESPN that states the network can renegotiate reduction of rights fees.
In other words, if West Virginia walks after this year like they say they want to, the remaining Big East schools could see their TV money shrink before the current deal is even up. It would also send a serious damper into the 2014 renegotiation, which the Big East must already be dreading.
Meanwhile, just when you thought this whole situation couldn't get any more ridiculous, Dennis Dodd alerted everyone to the fact that the person who drafted the Big East's withdrawal provisions is the former West Virginia president and general counsel chief.
So, yes, West Virginia is suing to prove that the withdrawal bylaws that West Virginia wrote are unfair.