Much was made this week, whether in Dallas or off in Greensboro, North Carolina, or even Bristol, Connecticut, of the Big 12′s scheduling nuances. It has nine regular-season games, but that means it has the high visibility’s only true round robin format.
That, though, doesn’t matter to some as it relates to crowning a conference champion. The other four highly visible leagues play eight or nine games, and this avoid some teams, often to a benefit, but settle it all in a conference championship game.
It’s a vivid variable right now as we begin to fret about and fixate upon the College Football Playoff. The Big 12 knows it and can’t and won’t hide behind the “One True Champion” sloga it paraded around the media days. Even Bob Bowlsby more or less admitted there was a method to “why we are promoting the difference between how we determine a champion and how other leagues determine their champions.”
“From our perspective, we don’t care,” Hancock said. “We just take the champions the conference gives us. Conferences through the years have been helped by having championship games and have been hurt by having championship games. The Big 12 was helped some years and hurt some other years. It’s a conference decision and we stay on the sideline. They give us the teams they give us.
“Having said that, you can make a case for a championship game because it gives two teams another game against a quality opponent and a chance to enhance the quality of schedule. But I just don’t see it as being a big factor for the committee one way or the other.”
But as the backlash rises against the Big 12 commissioner — and I’m not sure which is getting more … the “cheating pays” or the “you’re going to hate” intercollegiate athletics — there are a few things we have to consider.
First and foremost, Bowlsby and the Big 12 support providing student-athletes the total cost of attendance … even as Bolsby concedes it will cause trouble. And that effect should not be overlooked. I don’t think it’s a media days talking point. Didn’t think that when we were talking about months ago.
Additionally, it seems clear that more often than not, Bowlsby is the smartest man in the room. He does not speak off the cuff. He prepares. He has things like data and precedent in his pocket. He worked at the mid-major level and also serves on the USOC’s board of directors, both important distinctions when the conversation includes dropping Olympic sports.
He’s also been spitting that line about cheating for a while now, and he told our Derek Redd the same thing last month when we did that series on reform. The idea that “enforcement is broken” is not new. It’s not. It’s easy to combat or attempt to dispel, but it’s not new. We’ve heard about this for years.
So the idea that budgets might bulge or burst while further accommodating these coming student-athlete welfare initiatives, that’s logical, right? And if that’s logical, and if we have merely a modicum of knowledge of expense vs. revenue, we can anticipate a pinch in the future, correct?
I buried the lead, I suppose, with regard to scheduling in the story I wrote about the WVU v. Tennessee game we first started writing about last year. But this ain’t the story. So let’s get to it, and, it turns out, as first reported by Mack …
WVU and NC State working toward home-and-home football series in 2018-19. Second game would be in Morgantown, source tells @SportsDailyMail
How about opening with Tennessee in Charlotte and then playing the Wolfpack down the road in 2018? WVU has five Big 12 home games that season, which necessitated playing at home the following season — and, sure, that can change.
The future non-conference schedules are strong(er) now, and we’re going to see the final 2016 name in a week or so. But Tuesday was about 2018 with N.C. State and Tennessee, the latter bringing WVU somewhere between $2.5 million and $3.2 million. We just need to figure out who’s the home team by Feb. 1, 2018.
The home team will have the exclusive right to televise or distribute the game and the home team’s conference keeps the revenue. The home team also has the first choice for jersey color, though the contract allows the visiting team to wear its dark home jersey.
The home team has to provide a chain crew, a clock operator, replay equipment, a press box announcer and a public address announcer and is responsible for press box operations. The officials are to be from a neutral conference, “preferably from the Big Ten.”
Both schools agreed to buy 12,500 tickets from CSE and can sell those to their fans. Up to 500 tickets are allotted to each marching band. The schools will also work together to each set aside 2,000 for students. Student tickets that are unsold on June 1, 2018, will go to the school’s general allotment.
So I heard Tuesday Clint Trickett was in some hot water for a Tweet and I just assumed it was this one, which, seriously, was no big deal. I guess he could have devoted another 140 characters to it to provide context and explain he’s known Jimbo forever, but he didn’t.
And that’s fine.
Jokes and tweets are for the people who get them and not for the people to whom you must explain them. This isn’t calculus and you don’t have to show your work. I don’t need to stop proceedings to explain why I’m hysterical. I won’t.
But he nevertheless clarified his message and intent after the tweet became, for some reason, news and not just the product of a guy with Twitter and a sense of humor.
In regards to the tweet to Coach Fisher, it was an OBVIOUS joke, he is a family friend and I have known him since I was 4 years old.
You are looking live as the Big 12′s bowl hardware, which, you know, we haven’t really seen, but is on display today in the hallway outside the media rooms here at the Omni in Dallas. The second and final day starts here soon with Walt Anderson, the coordinator of officials. Dana Holgorsen speaks at 11 a.m.
Though I’m still sort of new to this Big 12 experience, we all have seen a popularization of teams and coaches and players the past few years go in line with the proliferation of social media and marketing and simple personality. With the mass exposure available to college football entities these days, there is a need and there are means for visibility.
So we’re more than a little qualified to dip into what follows: I’m not sure anyone has ever had a better Big 12 media day than Baylor did Monday.
I’m a big fan of Baylor’s big defensive end Shawn Oakman. He’s a freak. He’s a problem. He’s a damn wrecking ball on the end and he’s probably only now coming into his own … which is frightening.
But he also happens to be the proprietor of the best quotes from the first day of our Big 12 media days.
I was watching his show Monday and I noted his reverence for teammate Bryce Petty, but also the plethora of questions about the star quarterback. I had a hunch he was bristling, albeit politely, beneath the surface.
“Shawn,” I asked, “have you ever gotten your hands on Petty? Practice? Scrimmage?”
His eyes opened as wide as his wingspan. Then he reached into his pocket and pulled out his cell phone.
“I’ll show you this,” he said. “This is the best picture ever.”
Football being a contact sport, one where defensive coaches task players to collision receivers and thus re-route them, you can forgive Kansas tight end Jimmay Mundine for not immediately remembering his meeting with Darwin Cook last season.
“Darwin Cook?” he asked. He wrinkled his forehead for a moment and quickly scanned a list of 2013 collisions, knowing it must have been a good one if he was being asked about it eight months later. The name just wasn’t ringing a bell, which was ironic since we were discussing a bona fide bell-ringing.
You are looking live at a logo, but it’s the new Big 12 logo and we’re on the cusp of new season. The 2014 saga starts in essence and in earnest today with the first day of the two-day Big 12 media day gala.
West Virginia will have to wait until tomorrow. Today we’re treated to Baylor, Kansas, TCU, Oklahoma and Texas Tech. One WVU note, perhaps apropos of nothing, but I have the media guide on me — the cover is the same as the team poster — and it has bios for Donte Angus, Jacob McCrary, Jaylon Myers and Justin Scott. None of them are on campus as of yet, and a spot in the guide doesn’t guarantee anything, but WVU at minimum held out hope when it put this together just a few weeks ago.
Commissioner Bob Bowlsby starts things off with a press conference here shortly. he started some fires last year, so perhaps you ought to pay attention. Here. Of course, this thing is being televised, too, on Fox Sports.