The Power of ESPN (Houston and the Las Vegas Bowl)

The relevant quote:

"Never, though, underestimate the power and influence of TV suits in these deals.

"So the suits did what suits do, gently (sternly?) pushing everyone toward the team from the most populous city in Texas.

"‘The reality of it is, ESPN played a key role in helping secure Houston,’ said Saccenti, 41.

“‘It’s ABC, Houston is a huge television market, we should pull a pretty good number and it’s an attractive matchup.’"

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So disney aka abc and espn help us to get a good time slot and an attractive bowl. They want to get good ratings and they know we will bring the ratings.
At the same time the small12 is telling everyone that they can’t expand and invite U of H because the the same tv culprits have no money
Who is lying?


ESPN probably didn’t want to risk us being part of a hypothetical new bug 12 network that didn’t involve them. We’re in the fold, and we provide a lot of value. Maybe they’re waiting for Notre Dame to s or get off the pot with the ACC, so they can move us in to a slot and make that a 16 team league. No can do if we were locked down with a finicky and underperforming bug 12.


Correct, ESPN and FOX are the main reason why the Big 12 didn’t expand as neither wants the other to gain a foothold. FOX backs Oklahoma and a number of the smaller Big12 schools while ESPN backs UT and Kansas. All the other talk about recruiting, strength of schools, etc was extraneous.

ESPN wanted BYU and Houston, FOX wanted the east coast. Neither was willing to give ground. The conference won’t exist in its current form in a decade.

ESPN knows our value and needs emerging brands. Just got to keep winning and building.

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I think that there are other reasons why the small12 did not expand. It does not add up. If espn wanted us they could have negotiated our inclusion along with Cinci to the ACC at the same time they restructured their deal. I am guessing the truth is that we probably will never know. Does this point to an FBS 64 Teams Super League. Again, I am just guessing. The small12 knew coming in where each network stood. uta is in bed with espn so something drastically changed in a few weeks/months. Remember, when there is a will there is a way.

There certainly are other reasons, but the above is probably close to the mark from espn’s perspective, rather than the conspiracy earlier in the thread. Why cram us and Cinci in to the ACC when they don’t know what Notre Dame will do? That’s a sure way to lose any future chance at picking up Notre Dame, so bad idea.

Remember, they’re at risk of losing us in the next two years when the American deal is up. We’re already being pumped up more than usual. That could be to legitimize giving the whole conference more, or it could be to set up extracting us and placing us somewhere better. I wonder how much they’re going to talk during Saturday’s game about us, the top of the MW, and some of the bug 12 that is facing uncertainty with their recent flailex. Could be some chess pieces moving soon.

Notre Dame has been football independent for how long? Notre Dame can go anywhere they want to go even if they have an ACC deal in place for non football sports. The BIG10 not the ACC is the most logical choice for them. Remember the Rose Bowl is tied up/was tied up to the PAC12 and the BIG10. It is also interesting to note that the BIG10 new tv deal is also a partnership between FOX and espn. espn and fox are in bed together with the small12.
So the Houston TV market is now SEC land except when we play. The SEC tv contract is with CBS and espn not with FOX. So where is the FOX advertising revenue coming from the Houston area? I understand that FOX wants the East Coast but what about the Houston area TV market. Something does not add up.
I am getting a headache writing this. Who is on first?

I really don’t get the point of saying ESPN did UH any favors. PAC12 had 6 bowl deals with Vegas being the 6th. One PAC12 team is in the playoffs and only 5 other teams were bowl eligible. 33 Power 5 teams (plus 4 P5 playoff teams) and 1 G5 team are in bowls with a higher payout than Vegas. Navy is automatic to the Armed Forces Bowl when eligible while USF and Temple our filling bowl commitments to play SEC and ACC teams. So ESPN pulled strings to take us over Memphis, Tulsa and UCF, or did the bowl committee just use a little common sense that we were the strongest team available to them?

I don’t think the point is that they did us a “favor.” I believe the point is that they pulled strings to choose us because we bring a much bigger audience and upside. The point of the article is that ESPN recognizes how good we are for audience and money so they pushed us. I only read positivity, not negativity that we needed a “favor.”



That was my read of it as well, and why I posted it.

Notwithstanding the stuff put out there by those who want to keep us down and out, we provide value that “the suits” recognize.


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