Thursday, August 25, 2011

My Big 12 Plan

With Texas A&M leaving, the Big 12 needs to do something. I think the Big 12 needs to:

  1. Expand to two eight team divisions
  2. Expand into new, large media markets
  3. Expand into more states
  4. Create a Big 12 network and forbid schools from having individual networks (like Texas' new network and if Texas doesn't like this they can leave the conference)
  5. Expand in a way that makes geographic sense (travel between conference schools should be reasonable)
  6. Expand in a way that makes economic sense.

Without A&M, the Big 12 would have 9 teams. To get to 16, 7 teams would have to be added.

The top two targets for expansion should be two SEC schools, LSU and Arkansas. The addition of these two schools would greatly improve the conference and make complete geographic and media market sense. However, luring the two away from the SEC might prove to be impossible.

The next two targets for expansion should be two PAC 12 teams, Arizona and Arizona State. These teams only make geographic sense when the rest of the plan is known. These two schools would give the Big 12 the state of Arizona. However, again, it might prove difficult to get them to leave the PAC 12.

The Big 12 should add TCU and Houston. This would give the Big 12 teams in the DFW and Houston markets. It seems likely both teams would welcome a move to the Big 12. These two schools would make great travel and geographic sense. The only downside to these schools is that they don't add more states to the Big 12's state footprint.

BYU, Colorado State, and New Mexico should be added to increase the Big 12's state footprint. These schools help make the Arizona schools' travel requirements more reasonable and they add three states to the Big 12. New Mexico is not a great football school and New Mexico is not a big media market, but that's not the point. A conference full of tough teams is not ideal. Every conference needs its Baylor's and the Big 12 at the end of expansion needs to make geographic sense. It would seem likely that these three schools would be open to joining a sixteen team Big 12.

Iowa State should be dropped from the Big 12. It doesn't make geographic sense.

So, here is the "dream" Big 12

East Division:

  1. Arkansas
  2. Baylor
  3. Houston
  4. Kansas
  5. Kansas State
  6. LSU
  7. Missouri
  8. TCU

West Division:

  1. Arizona
  2. Arizona State
  3. BYU
  4. Colorado State
  5. New Mexico
  6. Oklahoma
  7. Oklahoma State
  8. Texas Tech

The above conference would seem to be able to attract a large TV contract for a conference TV channel plus football TV broadcast rights. This money should be distributed unevenly to the conference teams. Teams that are in bigger media markets should get more money than teams in small markets. Also, teams that are new to the conference should receive more money initially in order to attract these teams to the conference.

Teams would play a seven game conference schedule. That would allow each team to play five non-conference games (which seems ideal). Also, there would be a conference championship game. This would bring in yet more TV money.

It's unlikely that the above lineup of schools could be assembled. However, the conference should strive to form a sixteen team conference built with the above ideas in mind.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Saturday, August 20, 2011

UTSA Football Predictions

I'm looking forward to watching UTSA's new football program this year. My buddies and I even bought season tickets. Here are my game by game predictions:

  1. Sat, Sept 3 vs Northeastern State (big win)
  2. Sat, Sept 10 vs McMurry (win)
  3. Sat, Sept 17 @ Southern Utah (loss)
  4. Sat, Sept 24 vs Bacone College (really big win)
  5. Sat, Oct 1 @ Sam Houston State (big loss)
  6. Sat, Oct 8 vs South Alabama (loss)
  7. Sat, Oct 15 @ UC Davis (loss)
  8. Sat, Oct 29 vs Georgia State (win)
  9. Sat, Nov 12 @ McNeese State (big loss)
  10. Sat, Nov 19 vs Minot State University (really, really big win)

So, I'm predicting a 5 and 5 finish for the Roadrunners in their first season.

In addition, UTSA is scheduled to play Baylor in 2017, 2018, and 2019. That will be three wins.