Pac-12 Board Of Directors Authorize Media Rights Agreements
SALT LAKE CITY- The Pac-12 just released a statement that their Board of Directors met sometime in the morning, Tuesday, July 5 to authorize immediate negotiations for the conference’s media rights. The Pac-12 was served a blow Thursday evening when USC and UCLA made their intentions of leaving the league for the Big Ten in 2024 known. Since then anyone not in the Big Ten or SEC has been scrambling to figure out what is going to happen next.
— Pac-12 Conference (@pac12) July 5, 2022
Shopping ESPN and FOX
According to Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports, the Pac-12 will start a 30-day negotiation window with both ESPN and FOX. This is an interesting development because the thought had been before that without USC and UCLA neither network would be interested in the Pac-12. That begs the question, what, if anything does Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff have up his sleeve?
Indications are the Pac-12 will begin an exclusive 30-day negotiation window with ESPN and Fox. Other bidders can then weigh in after that if a deal isn't done.
— Dennis Dodd (@dennisdoddcbs) July 5, 2022
Dodd also reports that if no agreement has been reached in 30 days that the bidding will open up elsewhere.
This news from the Pac-12 is interesting since it was reported Sunday evening by Jason Scheer of Wildcat Authority that Utah, Arizona, Colorado and Arizona State would be meeting Tuesday morning with the Big XII to discuss joining the conference. There has also been strong speculation that Oregon and Washington have applied for Big Ten membership, though conflicting reports as to whether there is any interest there or not from the conference.
Whatever the case, it appears Commissioner Kliavkoff is not giving up without a fight. What good that fight will ultimately do remains to be seen and is very dependent on the remaining ten schools staying firm with the Pac-12. However, with reports and rumors of schools already exploring their options, it seems like a long shot for the Pac-12 to survive.
One interesting thought produced by John Canzano, is for Oregon and Phil Knight (founder of Nike) to pledge funding the Pac-12 in an attempt to lure some of the better Big XII schools to join the conference instead of the other way around. This would help with media rights negotiations, but like everything to this point, it is unclear exactly who is doing what and how seriously.
In another interesting twist, Canzano also reports that the Big XII meeting with Utah, Arizona, ASU and Colorado did not in fact take place this morning with one school allegedly pumping the breaks on that speculation. Canzano’s source pointed out Kliavkoff has been doing a good job in the face of adversity and the schools are sticking with him for the time being.
The one school who appears to hold everyone else’s future at stake is Notre Dame and it seems like they know it. It has been reported both the Big Ten and SEC are interested in acquiring the Fighting Irish as they are actually the one team left with an absurd value, but this move feels like it’s in a current stalemate. Notre Dame has been an independent and doesn’t seem to feel any rush to make a decision on their future. Once they do pull the trigger, it seems inevitable everything else will fall into place. What that will look like is anyone’s guess.
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