The great negotiation: will the big 12 choose houston and long-term stability or stick with short-sighted thinking?

Very good article basically calling the Big 12 out if they don’t take Houston


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Based on my mistrust of UT’s recent about face on supporting UH to the Big12, I have a conspiracy theory. UT goes to the networks and proposes that instead of adding 4 schools and thereby costing the networks $100,000,000 annually, the conference doesn’t expand saving the $50,000,000 and that money is split up between the current schools. With that proposal the conference votes not to expand . UT looks good to the state legislature because they say it’s not their fault UH didn’t get in

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Conspiracy theory? I would be flabbergasted if something like this isn’t being discussed. $50 million sounds like too much money to divvy up without expansion, but the concept is intact. This is certainly a money grab by the Big 12, and seeing the Big 12 take a pile of money from ESPN not to expand is a clear possibility. I don’t know if no expansion with a pile of money to the Big 12 is likely to come to pass, but I’d bet it is on the table.

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A good article on long term stability vs. short term short sightedness …

AND guess what …

The “Joe McCarthy” conspiracy theorists start to come out … there are crooked commies errr … horns/Big12 members under every bed with no regard to expansion … just getting more $$$ into the 40 acres’s/other members bank account.

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You have to think of it like blackmail. The networks pay $100M of 4 new schools or the save $50M . Also I don’t think UT and OU are thinking long term Big 12 existence since they can probably go somewhere else as no as there’s no LHN

Unfortunately a new factor has been added to the equation NOW AND IN THE FUTURE and going elsewhere may no longer be practical.

ESPN and Fox have become stingy with their $$$$ and ALL the P5s have no doubt taken note.

Nine years from now all may have changed … who knows … but for now STAYING PUT and not rocking the $$$-boat seems the norm.

I get what you’re saying, Ritz. If you’re after a greedy cash grab, well, by all means be greedy. My thought is that at some point, the dollars get so high that the TV partners will say: “Go ahead and add two teams.”

I have no clue what that point is. My gut says the Big 12 can probably get about $30 million in return for dropping expansion from consideration. That’s about $3 million per school. That’s just a gut feel. Your guess of $50 million may be closer. But once you get to some dollar amount, the TV partners will say the Big 12 might as well add two teams so that the broadcasters get some extra programming.

It is a good article but I think many who look at this article overlook this piece:

Any conversation about the future of the Big 12 has to be viewed through the prism that there’s a significant chance Texas and Oklahoma go elsewhere when the league’s current television contract expires in 2025. If the Big 12 loses its only two marquee programs, wouldn’t it covet a direct line into Houston’s market, recruiting ground and potential? This needs to be a 20-year decision—again, not the Big 12’s specialty—and there’s an excellent chance Houston can grow into a top-tier Big 12 program in the next two decades.”

BigD … I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but I have a conspiracy theory that says the TV partners are so bitter about this Big 12 cash grab that the TV partners are going to destroy the Big 12 in 2025 by ripping it apart. In other words, ESPN wants to turn the Big 12 into the Big East 2.0. Aspirations were high at UH immediately after the Big East invitation, but it is abundantly clear today that UH couldn’t rely on the Big East to help it grow into a top-tier program.

I wish UH could wave a wand and magically get the Pac-12 interested in them, Pac-12 membership is a long term solution. I’m worried about the Big 12.

I don’t disagree with that but I don’t think bitterness is driving it. I think they want to consolidate who they are paying big money to and the Big12 losing UT & OU fits that line of thought. Remember, these networks are losing subscribers at a rapid rate. They are committed to the SEC and with the ACC thanks to their new deal. They are going to bid the other half of the B1G and pay them big money so that leaves the B12 and Pac12. The reason I think they would rather have UT and OU go to the Pac12 instead of poaching the Pac12 for the Big12 is that those costs are much lower. The Pac12 owns their own network and the networks just pay rights fees. The conference is paying the costs of broadcasting.

Without the top 2 in the Big12 the conference still has value, but it will be a lot less than it is currently

We really need to keep it going on the field, because if we could become a Top 10 program (and I do believe that’s possible with Herman), we could be an anchor school with maybe TCU and/or West Virginia and/ or whoever is left of OSU and maybe Tech should UT and OU leave. It’s not as if the Big East was a powerhouse with Temple, Rutgers, Syracuse, etc. back in the day. Miami helped to elevate VPI and a couple of others. So it was a decent league with a school that won big but wasn’t a marquee program like an Alabama or USC or Texas or Michigan. In so many words, I’m saying the Big 12 would definitely take a big hit if Texas and OU left, but I can see a scenario where it could still hang in there as a P5 and be about as strong as the ACC is now.

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I think you’re on to something. If UT/OU leave in 2025, the Big 12 wouldn’t be forced out of the P5 cartel immediately; at least, not until the playoff contract is up after 2026.

Issue will be where they go and who leaves with them. With the ACC locked up now until 2036, the only conference the other 3 will look to raid now is the Big 12.

I imagine the B1G will go after Kansas and UT/OU; I don’t believe UT/OU go there. If UCONN is invited to the Big 12, they’d also be a natural fit for the B1G. We won’t get AAU status by then, but if we make enough progress in the next decade while fielding strong athletic programs across the board, we’d be the next likely candidate due to our location in Houston. It’s a long shot, but you never know.

The PAC 12 and SEC will go hard after OU, the question will be if OSU has to go with them. With state funding so low right now in Oklahoma, OU may not worry about staying with OSU, although, they will want to make sure they are taken care of. The question is who will partner with OU. Again, if we continue building our academics while maintaining strong athletic programs, we’d be the next likely choice in both scenarios.

I still believe that neither will leave in 2025. Both like power and if they can expand and get some sort of network going, I think both schools will stay put.

I have a buddy in Oklahoma (doesn’t everyone?) and he and I were talking last night. His comment to me was that whenever he gets bored he logs onto one of the UH fan sites and reads all the debates about UH and the Big 12. Evidently that has become something of a pastime in Oklahoma. I mean, what else is there to do while waiting for the next tornado? But to be clear, folks is watchin us.

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Pray - I’ll just say this … I was amazed at how fast the Big East fell apart. The gravy days will last as long as the TV contract lasts. When TV money ends, the party is over. Then those schools that can leave will leave. If UH goes to the Big 12, it needs to find a way to make sure it is one of the schools that can make it to a more stable conference in the even the B12 falls apart.

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