Monday, September 19, 2011

How Much Better is Baylor Than UTSA?

Because of fortuitous scheduling, we can answer this question using a little bit of football mathematics.

Baylor beat SFA 48-0. SFA beat McMurry 82-6. McMurry beat UTSA 24-21.

So, Baylor is (48 - 0) + (82 - 6) + (24 - 21) = 127 points better than UTSA.

That's probably about right. :)

More Big 12 (the Best Baylor Can Hope For)

The following is the very best Baylor and the other schools left in the Big 12 can hope for:

A&M, Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State all leave. The remaining schools should get as much money from the departing schools as possible. This should be in the range of 50 to 150 million dollars. This money should be split among the five remaining schools. This money could be used to pay (hopefully), the financial obligations the remaining schools have.

The Big 12 should try to position itself as the 5th best conference behind the SEC, Big 10, Pac 16, and the ACC. It should add a conference TV network. It should be renamed. And it should attempt to get to 16 schools.

Top choices include:


Other choices include:

Air Force
Colorado State
New Mexico
North Texas
UA-Little Rock

The Big 12 should go to the unequal revenue sharing model described in a previous post.

A Big 12 with 16 schools, including the 5 remaining schools and the 5 top choices above should be able to pull in a reasonable TV contract.

This outcome is really the best Baylor can hope for.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Friday, September 9, 2011

My New Big 12 Plan

After learning some new information, I have developed a new Big 12 plan.

The new information I've learned is the following, small schools get almost no money from national TV contracts. For example, the WAC just signed a new TV deal that would result in each school getting around $300,000 a year. That's peanuts compared to what every school gets in the SEC or the Big 12.

So, disparity in TV/conference revenues is both reality and appropriate. A school like UT is more valuable to a conference than a school like Iowa State. This difference should be recognized with different conference revenue for different schools.

So, I propose that the Big 12 do the following things:

  • Forbid schools from having their own TV networks
  • Start a conference TV network with revenue from that being shared across the conference
  • Go to an unequal revenue sharing model
  • Pick a conference geographical footprint that makes sense and keeps travel times for fans and non-football sports reasonable
  • Grab the best schools available within that footprint while deviating from that footprint only slightly if an exceptional school is available outside that footprint
  • Add a mechanism for paying new members more for a few years to encourage schools to come to the Big 12
  • Add a mechanism for voting out schools when an upgrade becomes available (with a nice parting gift for schools voted out)
  • Expand to 16 teams, taking the best available schools in the conference footprint
  • Have two 8 team divisions with a conference championship game

The revenue sharing model could be something like this:

  • Schools are ranked by their relative value to the conference from 1 to 10
  • Schools are paid according to that rating, a 10 would get 10 times as much as 1 and 5 times as much as a 2, etc.
  • New schools are paid for two years at a rating that's 2 points higher than their actual rating
  • Schools that are voted out, are paid for two years at a rating that's 2 points higher than their actual rating after they leave the conference

So, for example, current 10's would be Oklahoma, Texas, and Texas A&M. Oklahoma State and Texas Tech might be 5's. Baylor, Kansas, and Kansas State might be 3's. Iowa State might be a 2. Using the above ratings, there would 51 shares. The three 10's would each get about 20% of conference revenue. The two 5's would each get about 10%. The three 3's would get about 6%. Iowa State would get 4%.

Using the above revenue model has many advantages. New schools can be added as necessary/possible. These schools would be paid an appropriate amount of the conference revenue. They would also receive a two year bump in revenue that would help encourage their move. Schools that were displaced from the conference because of an upgrade would be compensated by two years of increased revenue. The above model also forbids schools signing huge personal TV contracts. This is probably one of the causes of the Big 12's current difficulties.

The geographical footprint the Big 12 should take is Texas and all the states immediately around Texas (plus a state or two north of this). So, these states would be part of that footprint: Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. A school just outside the footprint could be considered if they make the conference significantly better.

Schools that fall into that footprint and their possible ratings include:

Arkansas, 7
Arkansas State, 1
Colorado, 7
Colorado State, 1
Houston, 3
Louisiana Tech, 1
LSU, 10
Missouri State, 1
New Orleans, 1
New Mexico, 1
New Mexico State, 1
North Texas, 2
Rice, 2
SMU, 3
TCU, 4
Texas State, 1
Tulane, 2
Tulsa, 2
UA-Little Rock, 1
UL-Lafayette, 1
UL-Monroe, 1
Wichita State, 1

The Big 12 should try to have at least one school in each state in its footprint and then add as many of the higher ranked schools as possible.

I believe the above proposal would result in a stable and prosperous Big 12, a Big 12 that has a mechanism for become better as other schools become available.