I'm following an expansion thread on Texas' independent board, ShaggyTexas. There's the usual idiocy, nonsense and drivel that a person might expect from such a 1400 page thread, but there's also some good insight.
One major recurring theme is that the BigXII and PAC12 should pursue the type of schedule agreement that the PAC12 once explored with the B1G (the one that was down voted by USC and Stanford to protect their ND series). That the leagues should pursue that in lieu of any type of merger. I think that it's an interesting idea and could help in matters of exposure and possibly revenue. That such an agreement would effectively leverage the relative strengths, and conversely cover weaknesses, for both leagues. They want to keep their league because they don't like any of the alternatives. I think we could probably say the same
In this same thread are numerous comparisons between BigXII and PAC12 power centers of Texas and California, primarily that the U of Texas, alone, demands more attention in its state than all four California schools do in theirs combined. How is it that the PAC12 can have the demographics without having the influence? I think it's a good question.
They have a similar problem to the one we have. They're not happy playing second to the B1G or SEC either. Neither do they have sufficiently enticing expansion candidates. Our answer hinges on what the California schools do. I know that Utah is doing everything in its own power, but our impact has a ceiling that is much lower than that which the California schools have. I know that the answer is not to sacrifice programs on the altar of a supposed "flagship program," nor is it to distribute revenue unequally. Neither the B1G nor the SEC does either of those things, and the PAC12 should be looking at "best practices" of those leagues.
If the California schools have the power, they also have the responsibility. That's where the answer lies. Tell the conference offices to save money in staff or location or whatever. Those are small changes that would result in some small benefit to each of the schools of around $2mm annually. Get the California schools on board with scheduling, eight league games with no fixed crossovers. Play ball with the rest of the league in pursuing schedule agreements purely for exposure purposes. Push back on game time slots with broadcast partners, or pursue alternatives with Google or whichever partner can take us to the next revenue model. Play Sacred Heart or The Little Sisters of the Poor in Week 9 or 10. Exposure is now, IMHO, our biggest problem. Most of our hurdles are self-inflicted.
One man's opinion.