The ACC wrapped up a few days of spring meetings on Wednesday, and commissioner Jim Phillips said all of his league members are “emphatically” committed to each other.

Phillips’ comments came after several reports, the The athleticsSeven ACC members are investigating the possibility of a court challenge to the league’s rights deal, which could open the way for one or more to leave the ACC before the media rights deal expires in 2036.

Virginia Tech Athletic Director Whit Babcock He told the Richmond Times-Dispatch. The seven schools — Virginia Tech, Virginia, Florida State, Clemson, Miami, North Carolina and NC State — have met with attorneys to review the document.

Babcock told the Times-Dispatch, “I usually categorize it as a lot of talk by the small teams about the granting of rights, the league rules, the interpretation of potential options. But as you know, the granting of rights has been looked at many times by many people.

Buckcock said the talks were not as structured as many interpreted from Monday’s reports, and that many of the discussions involved sub-parts of the seven, not all seven together.

“I think the exit was less than spectacular, but it was a catalyst for some real conversations and we can get to the things we’ve been working on as an ACC a little bit faster,” Babcock said.

He and his peers aired grievances from their meetings, discussed positions and explored efforts to transition to a new revenue model that rewards teams for competitive success. FSU and Clemson administrators have been vocal in recent months about their support for unequal income distribution. In the year In the 2024 12-team College Football Playoff, teams that advance the most in the upcoming season will be able to retain more CFP revenue than their peers.

After an exciting week in Amelia Island, Florida, nothing much changed for the ACC. The league’s revenue disparity compared to the Big Ten and SEC will only snowball because the two leagues pay $30 million more per year per school. But without a viable exit for ACC members until 2036, there is likely to be tension and grumbling for some time to come.

The upheaval surrounding seven ACC schools this week raises an interesting question for the rest of the major conferences: Will those schools seek new landing spots? And if so, could they be available before 2036? Could that possibility influence those conferences’ expansion decisions in the near future?

Pac-12 Commissioner George Klevkoff said the league still plans to finalize media rights negotiations before adding a member. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Meanwhile in the Pac-12

Everyone in the West is in a state of limbo as administrators await the presentation of the league’s new media rights agreement(s). multiple league sources said. The athletics Such deals are expected to be announced this summer, and Washington State President Kirk Schulz said as much earlier this month. In a conversation with Wazzu regent.

Schulz cited uncertainty in the economy, job cuts in the technology sector and other areas as the reason for the delay in negotiations. … Obviously, optics are something that those guys really care about. … If you were to say when would be the worst time to try and negotiate a media deal in the last six years, the last five months are probably the worst.

“I know our fans are upset.” Schulz told Friday.. “I ask everyone to be patient because there will be more bidders coming to the table, more interest as time goes on, and the 10 schools are the same as I’ve seen.”

The negotiation process is different (and slower) with media companies that have little experience with college football rights. ESPN will also participate in the bidding process. If there is any package of games on ION or The CW, the source said in the negotiations, it would be very small and for low-end offerings.

The league still plans to finalize media rights negotiations before adding a member. After USC and UCLA leave for the Big Ten in 2024, the Pac-12 is more likely to fill with more than two schools, Pac-12 sources said. The league could also elect to remain at 10 members (assuming it would avoid the Big 12’s surplus) or add just one new member and operate as an 11-team league, as the Big Ten did after Penn State was added.

An important date – not exactly the last date, but a key marker – is June 30, 2023. If San Diego State were to leave the Mountain West after that date and try to join the Pac-12 for the summer of 2024, the exit fee (about $17 million) would triple. So the Pac-12 will make its long-awaited decision on June 30 on whether the Aztecs will be the first San Diego State to compete in the Pac-12 in late 2025.

Although it’s hard to say for sure with the Pac-12’s media deal still in flux, there is optimism among key executives that the deal will be sufficient for the league’s survival and relatively short-term, keeping all current members with contracts and subsequent grants of rights that last four to six years. Such an arrangement would stabilize the league for a few years, allowing members to fund additional hunting efforts ahead of the Big Ten, Big 12 and SEC’s ongoing contract negotiations.

Why UConn is on the Big 12’s radar.

It’s certainly no secret at this point that the Big 12 is interested in slipping Colorado and Arizona out of the Pac-12. But waiting as that league’s media rights negotiations drag on into the winter and those schools’ leaders continue to settle for finals will test the patience of Big 12 commissioner Brett Yormark.

Yormark continues to explore options for expanding the Big 12 to a 14- or 16-member conference. There seems to be nothing left to do in terms of extending invitations to new members, but the first-year commissioner is doing his homework and UConn is one of several schools on his radar, according to Big 12 sources. The athletics.

Yormark has been open to westward expansion since her July hire, giving the Big 12 a national presence and television inventory in all four time zones. But Yormark has made it clear he’s willing to double down on the Big 12’s advantage as the strongest college basketball conference in the country if he sees value-adding targets.

UConn’s men’s basketball title run this spring has drawn more interest to Yormark, and the school is considered a good fit for several strategic reasons. Championship-caliber men’s and women’s basketball tournaments are certainly high on that list, but so is the opportunity to create a greater presence in the New York City market.

How does UConn football fit in? The Huskies are coming off one of their best seasons in some time. Jim Mora had a remarkable turnaround in his first season, winning six games and leading the program to a bowl game for the first time since 2015. The Huskies haven’t finished with a winning record since they were the Big East co-champions in 2010. And played Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl. They have hired six head coaches since then and have lost 9 or more games in seven of the past nine seasons. But given the resources and platform the Big 12 has to offer, could they be a more legitimate program by the end of the decade?

Yormark sees these expansion opportunities more through the lens of professional sports, seeing future defeats than past successes. When the next TV deal comes up in 2031, he’s looking at programs he can invest in to help build their brands to make the Big 12 even more valuable.

UConn’s current league (Big East) and former home (AAC) sources both expressed doubts about the Huskies’ desire to move to the Big 12. One of UConn’s biggest frustrations as a member of the AAC is that it is fragmented and stretched. The nature of the conference, as well as the loss of traditional basketball rivals in the Northeast. When the Huskies returned to the Big East in June 2019, they celebrated the announcement at Madison Square Garden with banners, signs and paraphernalia, making it clear how they feel about their return.

“Did they work so hard to get out of the league that it forces them to play UCF to get back in the league to play UCF?” A Big East source said. “I don’t see.”

UConn Athletic Director David Benedict He told City Insider on Wednesday. Any future remediation decisions will be a “complex question” for the school.

“I fully appreciate and understand the comments and opinions of people,” Benedict said. “Where you’re emotionally attached is probably obvious when you look at what people say and what they think. But, obviously, we look at it through a different lens, internally, and you have to consider a lot of things.

“At this point, I don’t know what decision I have to make. So what will happen two days from now, two weeks from now, one month from now, six months from now is anyone’s guess. There is a lot of posting around the country. There are many conversations. But, ultimately, until you make a decision, you don’t know and that’s not where we are right now.

One challenge for Yormark, if he decides UConn is part of the plan, will be building consensus among Big 12 presidents and chancellors. There is some doubt among league sources whether UConn is worth the conference. Since his appointment last July, Yormark has received strong support from the board to pursue what he believes is best. It’s easy for presidents and ADs to get on board the value that Pac-12 schools drive and drive as a full equity member. But going in this direction can take a lot of discussion and persuasion.

Another important discussion on that front: Can Yormark get its TV partners, ESPN and Fox, to support these moves and pay for additions that don’t come from Power 5 leagues? Or would schools like UConn be willing to offer invitation-only discounts? This is where these potential moves get even more complicated. The Big 12 doesn’t necessarily need to expand this summer. But even if his Pac-12 targets get enough deals to stick around, Yormark could go in a few directions to grow the league.

There is a belief among administrators both inside and outside the Big 12 that Yormark’s plans for pushing the envelope are broader than simply hunting down a pair of Pac-12 schools or leaning toward a basketball pedigree. Instability in the Pac-12 and ACC is trying to make the Big 12 the third-strongest power conference going forward — or the third and final power conference — if it leads to exits for those leagues. Yes, the most valuable schools flock to the SEC and Big Ten to earn invitations. But what about that secondary level? If the dominoes fall that way, schools like Louisville, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech or Duke could be Big 12-friendly. It may be worth waiting to see what happens elsewhere before making expansion decisions.

(Top photo: Logan Witten / Getty Images)

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