OU is laying the ground work to leave the Big 12

Discussion in 'College Sports Talk' started by SoonerManiac, Jun 1, 2017.

  1. SoonerManiac

    SoonerManiac Fanatic

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    Saw this on another site by a poster. This is his notes from a radio interview he heard. So take it FWIW to you.
    _________________________________________________

    George Schroeder who writes for USA Today and has covered OU football for a very long time was just on WWLS OKC with Al…. Schroeder also has great non-sports related OU contacts.

    I’m paraphrasing some but this is what was indicated.



    The Big 12 needs on the field results and a major change in perception for OU to consider staying and even if that did occur it’s not 100% that OU would stay

    George indicated that not very many people who work at OU think enough improvement will occur.



    George said that "OU is laying the ground work to leave the Big 12".



    The fans will have no say in where OU goes… George agreed with Al that Boren favors the B1G.



    Boren is not happy with the decisions the Big 12 has made

    Movement will occur in 2021 or 2022 if things are not going well

    George said OU will make 6 to 8 million off of its FOX deal next year.



    PS: Tramel says Bob Stoops was very fired up last night over OU's National Title in Golf
     
  2. GoldRusher

    GoldRusher Booster

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    What did he say about the GOR?
     
  3. CloneTemplePilots

    CloneTemplePilots Season Ticket Holder

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    Not exactly breaking news given the B12 GOR and OU T3 deal expiration in the 2024 timeframe as well as Boren's public comments over the past 24 months. Boren was more pro-B12 today with his comments to his credit.

    Regarding OU's so-called issues with B12 perception, Boren himself has needlessly contributed to B12 negative public perception.

    I agree that if there is movement, it does need to happen at least 4 years in advance of GOR expiration to avoid negative recruiting implications but I think the first domino to fall will be the future of LHN and if it will be terminated, sold, flipped to a conference=wide network or remain as-is.

    The question I have will Boren still be OU President in 2021? I understand his affection for the B10 and its potential impact on OU academics but I highly question if the B10 will offer OU without AAU status and if OU really wants to be a far South outlier in the B10. And OU membership in the SEC runs the risk of impacting its FB program similar to aggy. Once aggy's B12 recruits migrated out of its FB program, they've become a mediocre player in the SEC.
     
  4. SoonerManiac

    SoonerManiac Fanatic

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    I will agree that Boren definitely has helped that perception.

    I'm not as worried about OU in the SEC as with Aggy, tbh. Apples to oranges. That said, I want OU to remain in the Big 12. But they are going to have to seriously look into expanding like OU wants if they are going to keep OU.
     
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  5. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    You mean if the Big 12 ignores and belittles complaints from its most successful football university for going on 7 years that said brand would look at leaving? You don't say.

    This isn't a Boren-driven deal. Not entirely, at least. The BMDs at OU aren't happy in the Big 12.
     
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  6. CloneTemplePilots

    CloneTemplePilots Season Ticket Holder

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    "ignores and belittles" is drama queen material.
     
  7. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    Oh, I don't know. Did Boren ever complain to the media about how difficult it was to work with Steven Leath? Or Kirk Schultz? I've never seen it. He's spoken out about OU's concerns with the Big 12 when literally years of not speaking out merited no action from the rest of the league.

    Did Big 12 administrators anonymously complain about Boren specifically and belittle his concerns to the Kansas City Star? Yep.
     
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  8. Austexeer

    Austexeer Season Ticket Holder

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    Ironic as well given that just yesterday he pronounced his newfound optimism about the chances of the conference given the recent payout projections.
     
  9. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    You don't tell your co-workers how much you hate them when you're at the company retreat. In the last few months, we've had Finebaum, Tramel, and George Schroeder all write about OU's dissatisfaction with the Big 12. Boren himself said he wanted to keep all options open.
     
  10. Austexeer

    Austexeer Season Ticket Holder

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    I know, I know. Best of luck in the Big.
     
  11. CloneTemplePilots

    CloneTemplePilots Season Ticket Holder

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    Boren never had a reason to complain how difficult it was to work with Steve Leath and I highly doubt Leath voiced any concerns about Boren to the KC Star. FYI, Leath is no longer at ISU. He is at Auburn now. Also have no idea or proof that Schultz voiced any concerns to the Star.

    It is my understanding Boren's concerns have been the following:

    1. No Conference Network: OU/Boren have no one but themselves to blame for that. The voting block of OU/UT/NU/aggy precluded the formation of a B12 Network before BTN and after. That voting block is THE reason for the demise of the original B12. I completely agree with Boren that some type of conference network is needed before the next round of negotiations in order to save the B12 but in order to do that, they will need to flip LHN to a conference-wide network (with or without ESPN support) or buy equity into PACN. There is no way a Fox, ESPN, Turner, CBS, Amazon, etc. will fund the formation of a new B12 conference network at this point with the existing 10 schools or with added G5 schools.

    2. No Expansion: There was no way a super majority of 8 schools were going to approve expansion last year with no GOR and TV contract extensions (T1/T2 and/or T3 conference network) and still provide an exit ramp for OU and UT to bolt the B12 in advance of new TV deal negotiations.

    3. 8 Game conference schedule: Only way that happens is with 12 or more schools in the conference. See #1 and #2. And expanding last season solely to accommodate an 8 game conference schedule was not sufficient rationale.

    Are there any other significant concerns of Boren that merited action from the rest of the conference?
     
  12. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    Gross. I know that's what OU is leaking to the press but I hope that's option #4. The threat of going to the B1G would hopefully leverage a group invite elsewhere (assuming we leave at all.)
     
  13. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    Which schools have administrators who are most likely to leak negative thoughts about Boren to Kansas City-based Sam Mellinger and Dennis Dodd? The Boren stuff isn't coming out of Oklahoma/Texas papers and/or media sources. So draw your own conclusions. I have.

    1. We had various vote totals on the B12N idea but the details couldn't be worked out because there wasn't an agreement about revenue distribution. That goes beyond just the 4 team voting block (a block that KU and others were occasionally part of, too.) If you want to look at it from the other side of the coin, there have been multiple B12 schools who at one point in their histories were essentially not investing in athletics (particularly football), content to ride the coattails of OU, Nebraska, etc. Just look at OU's all-time record against every member of this conference other than Texas. ISU has five wins in 80 all-time games and just 1 since 1961. Thankfully that lack of investment is no longer the case. But it created a very real value imbalance within the membership that will take a very long time to even out.

    I won't argue with you about our (lack of) conference network being a problem b/c you're right on the money. Boren was pretty explicit about getting rid of the LHN when this came up in 2015-2016. You can infer what Texas told him and the rest of the Big 12 based on how things went. But I don't know that Amazon, ESPN, FOX, etc., wouldn't fund a B12N streaming channel. I don't think the market for that is determined at this point. Hopefully that will work out in our favor.

    2. I think this was incredibly short-sighted by the voting block that shot it down. Work with OU and Texas to make the league to their liking, even without a new TV deal / GOR extension, and maybe they leave anyway. Or work against them and make it far more likely that they leave. I don't think it helps ISU land an ACC spot, over Cincinnati, to keep UC out. Geography and competitiveness are what they are. Facilities are what they are.

    Regardless, I hope we all work something out to keep the Big 12 together later on.

    3. There are multiple rationales for expanding that go beyond simply playing an 8 game conference schedule (academic branding, media reach, preference for brand building now before times are desperate, etc.) We've discussed all of that before so I won't clutter the board with it now.
     
  14. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    FWIW, one reason I've moved toward some optimism about all of this is that Texas insiders are now leaking a preference to join the B1G (if they go anywhere.) That implies that Texas and Oklahoma are on the same page. That's actually a relatively new development.

    You could read into what that might mean with regard to UT's relationship with ESPN. The WWL has given them a lot of reasons to be unhappy with the partnership from a branding standpoint (Herbie called UT's administration a cesspool as recently as last year.)
     
  15. CloneTemplePilots

    CloneTemplePilots Season Ticket Holder

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    1. We had various vote totals on the B12N idea but the details couldn't be worked out because there wasn't an agreement about revenue distribution. That goes beyond just the 4 team voting block (a block that KU and others were occasionally part of, too.) If you want to look at it from the other side of the coin, there have been multiple B12 schools who at one point in their histories were essentially not investing in athletics (particularly football), content to ride the coattails of OU, Nebraska, etc. Just look at OU's all-time record against every member of this conference other than Texas. ISU has five wins in 80 all-time games and just 1 since 1961. Thankfully that lack of investment is no longer the case. But it created a very real value imbalance within the membership that will take a very long time to even out.

    Equal revenue distribution was not an issue in other conferences and it should have never been an issue in the B12 as well. Coattail riding has long existed in other conferences but wasn't an impediment to equal revenue sharing in other conferences.

    I won't argue with you about our (lack of) conference network being a problem b/c you're right on the money. Boren was pretty explicit about getting rid of the LHN when this came up in 2015-2016. You can infer what Texas told him and the rest of the Big 12 based on how things went. But I don't know that Amazon, ESPN, FOX, etc., wouldn't fund a B12N streaming channel. I don't think the market for that is determined at this point. Hopefully that will work out in our favor.

    Given the long delay with ACCN for both linear and streaming distribution by ESPN, I don't think there is an existing viable partner for a B12N. Best bet IMO is buying equity in LHN or PACN and keep the "middleman" out.

    2. I think this was incredibly short-sighted by the voting block that shot it down. Work with OU and Texas to make the league to their liking, even without a new TV deal / GOR extension, and maybe they leave anyway. Or work against them and make it far more likely that they leave. I don't think it helps ISU land an ACC spot, over Cincinnati, to keep UC out. Geography and competitiveness are what they are. Facilities are what they are.

    I don't think Texas wanted expansion as you suggest here. They weren't pleased with last year's faux expansion exercise based on my read. Diluting B12 value by adding the likes of UH and UC made it far more likely that both OU and UT would bolt when the GOR expired, not less. And unnecessarily adding more P5 mouths like UH and UC was detrimental to the likes of the B12 "Little 8" in finding P4 safe harbor in case of B12 implosion.
     
  16. SoonerLawyer29

    SoonerLawyer29 Fanatic

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    UT came to the negotiation table about expansion and stated their preference. They had self-interest for inviting UH, too. But UH was a non-starter for some of our schools. Only one school went public with concerns about UH and arguably poisoned that well. You know who that was. So I don't think it's fair to say UT was opposed to expansion. They were self-interested as everyone was. But we didn't get to hash that out as there was no need. No GOR extension meant the votes weren't there regardless of agreement on teams.

    Equal revenue distribution wasn't as much an issue for the B1G and SEC because the disparity between the haves and have nots wasn't as great as it related to revenue. Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan State, and Iowa along with Michigan, Ohio State, and Penn State, are all financial powers. Indiana and Illinois aren't exactly weak, either. Getting equal sharing was easier because almost everyone brought big, active alum bases to the table, so there was less a feeling of "coattails riding' there than here. In our case, the gap was a lot wider (though it has closed to some degree since.) Fear of extinction seems to have spurred contributions at several B12 schools over the last 7 years. That's good. All things being equal, I think we'd get more support for equal distribution on a network than 10 years ago.

    There's nothing that would necessarily stop us from creating our own B12N platform (akin to the PACNets) if we wanted to own something outright. And five years is a long time. Any number of potential partners could emerge (amazon, hulu, netflix, facebook, cbs, nbc, abc, fox, etc.)
     
  17. GoldRusher

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  18. SoonerLawyer29

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    Boren probably really would like to keep the Big 12 band together. The problem is that he leaves these meetings, starts talking to OU donors, and is reminded that OU donors aren't happy.
     
  19. NJAggie

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    Well I'd been holding off on throwing radio chatter in the mess, but Robert Allen talked to some of the Big XII conference people, and the other media peeps at the Baseball tournament, and the info he got was that everyone is expecting a breakup when the TV deal ends. He's always been it was smoke when it came to expansion/realignment, now he's firmly convinced it's over.

    I really don't see a path forward for the conference.
     
  20. CloneTemplePilots

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    UT came to the table last year with one stated preference: If expansion is approved, UH must be included. That was it. They were not necessarily pro-expansion.

    I am assuming the "only one school" you are referring to is ISU IIRC. ISU also came to the table with one clear stated preference: They would vote for any two or four schools, including UH, if the expansion triggered a GOR/TV Deal extension. The ISU President's preference was not to expand with UH but that preference was definitely not a deal breaker to expansion.

    Regarding a B12N, there is no need for it as long as the conference remains at 10 schools. All or almost all of the FB and MBB inventory with 10 teams can be sold to T1 and T2 providers. That arrangement has resulted in the existing favorable deals for the B12 with ESPN and Fox. Too early to tell at this point if the existing arrangement will result in similar favorable deals for 2025 and beyond. Lots of advantages to dividing a pie by only 10 as the ACC and P12 are finding out now.

    From what I've heard and read, the conference and individual schools are exploring all options in advance of the GOR expiration:
    -staying as-is with no B12N
    -expanding with new B12N
    -merger/alliance with P12 and PACN (with at least 8 schools)
    -B12 implosion with at least 8 schools transitioning to another P4 conference (takes 8 schools to blow up GOR in advance of its expiration)

    The last 3 options are contingent on changes to the LHN deal with ESPN.
     
    #20 CloneTemplePilots, Jun 3, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2017

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