As noted in many of these posts, the OP, and Delany & co, the talk is all about NYC, not NJ. They are not the same thing. If Rutgers is only supposed to bring central NJ, they are not nearly valuable enough to add.
Why Maryland and Rutgers and What's Next
Stop moping around.
I know adding Maryland and Rutgers to B1G was not exactly what you had in mind, but it is happening, so deal with it. Not only that, B1G will most likely add two more teams to make it even 16 before Devin probably graduates, so you better buckle up.
If you are in a fetal position holding on to an old tattered frame with a picture of Bo, let me at least give you some reasons why this is happening so you can make some sense out of this and also show you who is most likely to join B1G next.
There is a gold rush happening right now.
The bluebloods of college sports are pairing up to form 4 super conferences (with at least 16 teams each) that will divide up the country like the market barons of old and extract every cent of TV money they can by creating sports networks to go along with those conferences.
Three of those 4 super conference are already set with B1G and its BTN, PAC and the west coast, and SEC, with its super lineup of football powerhouses, the lord of the southeast. The last open spot will be a battle royale between Big12 and ACC.
But who is going to win that last spot? Most of you just shrug your shoulders and say “who cares?” But Jim Delany certainly cares. He cares because there
are were four seats available at the table and he wants to make sure those seats are filled by the biggest whales who can fill the B1G’s mighty coffer.
But who brings the most money? Whoever has the biggest cable market.
Big Ten Network is the teat that B1G suckles on. What is good for BTN is good for B1G (at least money wise). So, how does BTN make its money? From cable subscribers (more specifically, regional cable networks who offer BTN as part of a low tier package) – and more subscribers there are, more money B1G will make.
So, who has the most subscribers? Here are the top 50 TV markets in US.
Due to logistics and deep seated support, we can eliminate all of west coast (PAC) and south and southeast (SEC). Obviously, we can eliminate most of mid-west that we already own.
Eliminating those, the TV markets that are really in play (for B1G) are as follows:
1 New York
8 Washington DC
21 St Louis
27 Hartford & New Haven
31 Kansas City, Missouri
42 Norfolk–Portsmouth–Newport News
45 Oklahoma City
47 Greensboro-High Point-Winston-Salem
50 Providence–New Bedford
Obviously, the prettiest girl in the room is the #1 market in the country – New York. The second is Boston and the third is Baltimore/DC area. To say that Delany COVETS those areas would be an understatement. So, who are B1G’s possible opponents for those areas? The most obvious choice – Big East – is in shambles. The only other choice is ACC, especially now with the possibility of adding ND.
From B1G’s point of view, the most ideal scenario for the 4 super conference is for Big 12 to grab that last spot, not ACC. This eliminates the biggest threat to B1G for the biggest markets in US. It also has an added bonus where much of Big 12’s territory will overlap with SEC, and help keep SEC in check for the future (because you never know).
Now, that we have established that it is in B1G’s interest to make sure Big 12 succeeds, the decision by Delany to spurn Missouri makes a ton of sense. But SEC knew what was best for them and tried to break apart Big 12 by getting Texas A&M and Missouri.
This probably surprised Delany and forced his hands to attack ACC more directly. And what is the best way to attack an enemy? Divide and conquer. You attack the heart of your foe and divide their forces, cutting off the supply lines and causing mass confusion.
It just happened to be that a school right in the heart of ACC was desperately in need of help. Due to years of mis-management, Maryland athletic department was seriously running in red. They needed money and fast.
This was all the opening that Delany needed and he pounced. Maryland not only brings #8 and #24 market, it makes ACC that much weaker and makes it more likely for ACC powerhouses like Clemson and FSU to bolt to Big12/SEC, which would seal any possibility of ACC becoming a super conference.
Delany balanced Maryland addition by getting Rutgers to join, which bring the #1 market in play. With PSU, UM, and Rutgers, any existing college football interest in NY area will be squarely on B1G. This was a very, very shrewd move by Delany in many levels. It makes no difference how weak Maryland and Rutgers are in football. Those things are things that can be addressed. Turning #50 TV market into top 10 is significantly harder to achieve.
But now that B1G has 14 teams, it is not likely to stop there for very long. Getting to 16 makes a lot of sense in scheduling and logistics. It is just a matter of when.
But who are the most attractive targets now?
Some are saying Georgia Tech due to their football consistency and academics. But if you look at Delany’s modus operandi, I think this is unlikely. Georgia/Atlanta market already belongs to University of Georgia, Georgia Tech is not going to bring that market to B1G, and Delany is not about to play second fiddle to SEC in that market.
Looking at the list above, it is obvious which markets Delany will try to target; Boston and Raleigh/Charlotte.
The #6 market, Boston, is an interesting case as there are numerous colleges/universities in the area. The most obvious choice is Boston College with their solid football and basketball programs. But their enrollment is small (~15,000), and I am not sure if they really fit B1G’s mold. But if it means getting access to the #6 market, Delany will explore there.
The next largest market is Raleigh/Charlotte. There is a clear option there in UNC, which has almost ideal combination of size and quality (both academic and athletic) that B1G is looking for. I doubt that UNC is looking to move out of ACC right now, but if FSU and Clemson bolt for greener pastures, UNC will certainly be looking for a new home.
However, to convince UNC, it may be necessary to also add NC St or Duke. If Boston College does not work out, this is certainly a possibility, as North Carolina is a market that is growing.
The final area for expansion is Norfolk/Virginia. VT/UVA are obvious options there. But UVA with its profile is probably the best fit for B1G.
There are really no other options that are as attractive as these schools and B1G expansion will certain revolve around these schools barring some other titanic shifts in college sports. Adding any combination of these schools will lock up the NE corridor (and its lucrative TV markets) for B1G for the foreseeable future.
This should be a very interesting couple of years.
There are two primary TV revenue streams. One is from the BTN, which depends on cable subscribers. Most profitable is to be on basic cable, which they are in every Big Ten state and which they have surely already negotiated for NJ and MD. It won't be just central NJ. The other is network deals with ABC/ESPN, etc. Big city markets are important for those. While adding Rutgers won't deliver the NYC market, establishing an east coast presence should help in big city markets.
The BTN deals are why further expansion will see schools in two new states, not something like UVA and VT. The exception is ND, which helps both in big city markets and paid BTN susbscribers..
If you haven't noticed, FOX is about to buy YES network. They own 49 percent of BTN with options for more. They can package BTN with YES and make it a take it or leave it deal. At that point, you just need a token local presence, which Rutgers provides.
Yes, now, we make more money from the big networks - but we own the BTN.
The future of TV is a la carte, not packages of hundreds of channels. How many of us watch the cooking shows?
College sports is a continuous source of new content, with built in consumers, so will always have value.
In terms of the large TV markets, any data on Notre Dame ratings in each region?
Just wondering how to quantify the value of that allegedly "national" program.
The Future of TV is a la carte? What makes you think that?
Big 4 is happening and Big12 will take the last spot (ACC will fall).
The big10 is just making sure it has its strategic pieces in place. Like you said UNC or UVA and I'll say ND will be where the last 2 come from. All will be available when its clear the ACC is going to fall. This will probably be in the next 2-3 years when the Big12 or SEC take Clemson, FSU, Miami...at some point the ACC conf will starting panicking b/c they will realize that replacing legit programs with big east leftovers is not going to get it done.
The only way UNC comes is if Duke gets an invite. The two schools are inseperable. That being said, can you imagine the basketball superiority of the B1G?
Man, does Delaney know how to steal Notre Dame's thunder or what?
This was supposed to be the week that the media slobbered all over Notre Dame's "Return to Glory" (TM), with them being ranked #1 for the first time in 20+ years.
Instead, all the national media talk is about how Notre Dame's new home is burning down before they've even moved in.
NC and duke next to come?
Sixteen-team conferences aren't an inexorable law. Every move has to make money. A lot of your scenarios are just "moves for their own sake."
According to the latest estimates, the Big Ten media payout will likely reach $45 million per school by 2019, compared with $25 million today. Simply put, the next pair of schools need to bring in $90 million just to break even. And Jim Delany doesn't do deals just to break even.
It gets harder and harder to find schools that are accretive, while also fitting the Big Ten's academic and geographic profile. As it is, some people feel that Maryland and Rutgers are a cut below the rest of the conference. How much deeper in the bargain barrel do you dig, and somehow come up with around $45 or $50 million a school?
Right, but those estimates are without considering basic tier rights in the Baltimore/DC (holy lock) NJ (lock) and NY(we'll see) markets. So these teams are adding considerable value. #'s 15 & 16? I'm not so sure. But if you're bringing in the markets in VA and NC, my guess would be that there's a net positive there as well. And the populations of those states are growing.
on ESPN and he said part of this was in response to a shift in demographics. Given the amount of growth that is supposed to continue down the I85 corridor between Raleigh and Atlanta, if they could swing UVA and UNC they probably would swing this way. But I agree UNC leaving Duke behind would be lile Michigan leaving Ohio behind. (NC State is like little brother ... meh ...)
I also agree the only way UNC gets the urge to move is if the SEC or the Big 12 invite ACC teams and the conference further destabilizes.
I wouldn't discount Georgia Tech to quickly though. The SEC and Georgia may be attractive for them, but the academic fit isn't there. Anchoring at the bottom of the I85 growth zone, and well into supposedly talent rich SEC territory may still make sense.
I still think the Big12 is the odd man out. How does the Pac12 get to a viable 16 otherwise?
Indiana schools go east, Michigan schools go west. Maintain rivalries with permanent cross over similar to current set up. This also opens up some potentially new and exciting games. I love the Wisco VaTech matchup and UVA-Northwestern.
I tried to list these in competitive rank (historically speaking).
Ohio State Michigan
Penn State Nebraska
According to people at md the big ten wants to get to 16 pretty quickly and gt is a top target, but they may wait to see what happens with fsu and the big 12 as the fsu president is already on record as he will be closely watching if md has to pay the full 50 million exit fee. The acc being so centralized the north carolina schools is really coming back to bite it in the ass.
By your logic, it might also make sense for Delaney to look at UConn/Syracuse, given the prominence of the Hartford/Buffalo markets.
The XII was always a shotgun wedding, purely a media-$$$ driven marriage of convenience. The wholly financial aspect of the arrangement permanently poisoned whatever relationships were there to begin with. The result: 4 of the 12 teams bolted, the 6 non-TX/OK survivors remained only because they had no options. That conference was was doomed from the start and won't last.
Yes, money matters and pays the bills. But I hope the B1G doesn't devolve into the same thing.
I will tell you what's next! I have another reason to visit D.C. in the fall and party my ass off! That's what's next.
Welcome to the B1G, losers!
in sports like Stanford. They have 26,000 students, bigger than BC. Can Delaney pry them away from the Ivy League? Welcome back, Tommy Amaker! Okay, riffing.
Here's my question:
The B1G has 2 spots left. So does the SEC. The Big 12 has 6 spots left, presumably, and the Pac 12 has 4. Who are those 14 teams?
ACC/Big East/Independent Teams with halfway decent programs:
That makes 19. I think we can probably take out Wake Forest, keep ND as an independent. Now we need to eliminate 3. Duke, Syracuse, and Pitt have strong enough basketball programs that it merits consideration. Cincy's got a good balance. UVA and NCSt. perennially underachieve - can we safely delete them? Who does that leave the Pac 12? Yes, Boise and BYU, but that only gets them so far...what's next?
These are the only teams on that list with AAU membership (+ ND, because they would get a pass), so this is what you're looking at as possible membership, if you expect the B1G Chancellors & Presidents vote to invite a school into the B1G.
Other possible schools include:
Yeah, I get that. I think you missed my point. I want to know who the Pac 12, Big 12 and SEC are going to pick up, too - and who among the major conference schools is going to get left out.
Indeed I did. I am an expert at answer questions that weren't asked. Ask my wife.
First, I don't see 4 superconferences as an inevitability. I imagine the playoff bracket will grow to 8 the next time around which leaves room for 5 conf champs and 3 at large bids. Plus, I don't think the ACC is at any real risk of breaking apart here. Maryland's athletic department was woefully mismanaged which brought about this move. Unless the B1G starts picking off UVA and/or UNC, I'm not sure that any more teams will leave. They've got a $50M buyout, plus the difference in payout between the ACC and B12 is roughly $3M. That takes several years to get an ROI.
Another reason is I can't see the Pac taking any of those teams. BSU and BYU are the only ones that are close geographically, and there isn't the academic fit there. I think Stanford and Cal would leave the PAC before voting either of those schools in. If the PAC expands, I think they're taking Texas and a few other B12 schools. And at that point we're looking at picking apart the B12 and the list looks very different.
Wait, I sitll haven't answered your question.
Ok. B1G takes: UVA and UNC
SEC takes: NC State & VT
B12 takes: Louisville, Clemson, FSU, Miami, GT & BYU
PAC 12 takes: ??? and this is where the 4 team superconference logic breaks down.
We're on the same page. I think the 16-team conference logic breaks down, too. One possibility, I suppose, would be for Oklahoma and OK St. to go to the Pac 12 and have the Big 12 replace them with someone...But we may be grasping at straws a little bit.
I'll raise my hand to put in my 2 cents. My sense is New York, as a cable demographic, will never be interested enough in college football to make a B1G's east-coast expansion on that basis correlate to additional network purchases.
New York is a basketball market. If the B1G wants New York's coveted subscribership, it will target basketball powers (and LAX; we actually watch that on TV here). Maryland makes sense from that perspective. Rutgers? A wash for now.
RIght now, Delaney has to be looking at highly competitive basketball schools with football programs that'll at least beat Indiana, Purdue or Minnesota enough to keep butts in seats.
UNC and Duke would be a coup for such a vision. But UNC and 'Cuse would also drive the money making machine Delaney envisions' both schools with monied and mobile alumni. 'Cuse to the B1G might also have the added benefit of reinvigorating an old football power.
I can imagine a B1G that pits UNC hoops vs. Michigan. 'Cuse vs. Michigan State. Belein vs. Boeheim. Izzo vs. Williams. Only on the B1G Network.
New York will buy that.
Jim Delaney, all I want for Christmas is UNC and 'Cuse. I just bought a new 50" flat-screen. Basketball is my sport. I'll buy your network if you get that done.
I've always thought they were the best fit for expansion along with ND if we were going to expand at all. Now that ND is ACC, why is Syracuse not at the top of Delany's list to go after along with BC in that Market? It makes more sense than GT, VA or UNC.
On Michigan Insider today, Sam Webb mentioned that someone had tipped him off to Maryland joining the Big Ten a couple of weeks ago - and that same source was saying that UNC and Georgia Tech would fill out the B16.
I agree that UVA makes sense for the B16, however if we have MD and UNC, we would already have a toehold in much of the Virginia market. Given all the cable households in Atlanta (Ga Tech), bypassing UVA is feasible. The only issue I do see with that scenario is that the Virginia legislature might not let Va Tech go to the SEC unless there was a secure home for UVA (NC legislature wouldn't be a problem because NC State would go to the SEC in that scenario).