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  #1  
Old 01-10-17, 04:49 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Should the AAC and MWC merge?

This is purely a hypothetical question, but I'm curious what people think about it. Would the below conference be considered a contender for "P5" (or P6) status?

East:
USF
UCF
Cincinnati
Navy
Temple
UConn
Memphis
ECU

West:
Boise State
Houston
BYU/UNLV
Air Force
Tulsa
San Diego State
Colorado State
Hawaii
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  #2  
Old 01-10-17, 09:19 PM
eastisbest eastisbest is offline
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Merging has to do with tv contracts, recruiting exposure... and what else?

TV contracts are fairly well an ESPN monopoly, a merge wouldn't seem to add to the exposure. Unless the idea is to form a tv network of their own, what's advantage?
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  #3  
Old 01-11-17, 12:26 AM
Sig Hansen Sig Hansen is offline
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I don't really see how merging would help any of these schools. Both conferences are doing just fine relatively speaking so there's really no need to throw a wrench in all of that
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  #4  
Old 01-11-17, 06:34 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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The benefits of a stronger conference come to mind:
1. Better competition
2. Better bowls
3. Greater publicity
4. Better opportunity to make the CFB playoff
5. Better TV money
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  #5  
Old 01-11-17, 07:01 PM
eastisbest eastisbest is offline
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Do you have any support for those conjectures?
They can schedule each other OOC should they choose. They go to the same bowls for the most part, don't they?
3. Can see maybe but the geography is so distant and all can be seen on ESPN anyhow...

I can see maybe the two conferences making a "challenge" date or two, see what interest that attracts before jumping to a conference. I'd imagine that's an expensive operation you're talking. They'd still have their separate administrations, adding an additional layer on top.
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  #6  
Old 01-11-17, 08:58 PM
Crusaders Crusaders is offline
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It would probably occupy the same "worst of the best conferences" spot that the Big East used to hold. Getting BYU to join would be important but a tough sell
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  #7  
Old 01-11-17, 11:00 PM
eastisbest eastisbest is offline
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BYU has themselves a bit of an image problem at the moment don't they? Strict non-academic guidelines as to who can enroll, that sort of thing.
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  #8  
Old 01-12-17, 12:35 PM
Saint Columban Saint Columban is offline
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first of all your model drops 8 programs from the 2 conferences. That alone would be chaos, especially considering SMU is one of the best programs in one of the two revenue generating sports.

This coast to coast travel would be financially devastating when you factor in the non revenue sports. Most these athletic departments are running in the red to begin with.

espn already has all these teams at a very favorable price. They wont be willing to pay more. look what happened with the big12 expansion, it was more cost effective to pay the current big12 members a little more than it would have been to give programs like UC a big pay raise.

it wouldn't improve bowls or playoff opportunity as both are currently already shut out of them so theres nothing to leverage. They'd be better off beefing up schedules with P5 ooc games to improve their chances.
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  #9  
Old 01-12-17, 03:21 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eastisbest View Post
Do you have any support for those conjectures?
They can schedule each other OOC should they choose. They go to the same bowls for the most part, don't they?
3. Can see maybe but the geography is so distant and all can be seen on ESPN anyhow...

I can see maybe the two conferences making a "challenge" date or two, see what interest that attracts before jumping to a conference. I'd imagine that's an expensive operation you're talking. They'd still have their separate administrations, adding an additional layer on top.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Columban View Post
first of all your model drops 8 programs from the 2 conferences. That alone would be chaos, especially considering SMU is one of the best programs in one of the two revenue generating sports.

This coast to coast travel would be financially devastating when you factor in the non revenue sports. Most these athletic departments are running in the red to begin with.

espn already has all these teams at a very favorable price. They wont be willing to pay more. look what happened with the big12 expansion, it was more cost effective to pay the current big12 members a little more than it would have been to give programs like UC a big pay raise.

it wouldn't improve bowls or playoff opportunity as both are currently already shut out of them so theres nothing to leverage. They'd be better off beefing up schedules with P5 ooc games to improve their chances.
OOC games are often scheduled a decade or more in advance. Schools hope for quality opponents when the games are actually played. A strong conference offers more of a guarantee regarding strength of schedule.

The bowl alliances could shuffle immediately with the merger, and if this conference is seen as having quality enough it could regain the former-BCS Bowl bid that the Big East held for many years - I do not see a legitimate reason for why it would be denied.

The MWC's TV contract is worth about $18m annually (source) or $1.2m per school.

The AAC's TV contract is worth about $36m (source), or $3m per school.

Now, we can look at the markets potentially involved here (the programs listed in my original post are by no means a "final incarnation" of mine):
Cincinnati (UC)
Dallas (SMU)
Denver (CSU)
Hawaii (UH)
Houston (UH)
Las Vegas (UNLV)
Memphis (UM)
Orlando (UCF)
Philadelphia (Temple)
San Diego (SDSU)
Tampa (USF)

BYU (Utah/national)
Navy (national)
Air Force (national)

Then you have name recognition programs: Boise State and UConn.

Before you laugh at this, you may need reminding that this appeared to be the direction the Big East/AAC wanted to go during realignment as they courted BYU, Boise State, TCU, and San Diego State in addition to the other western teams they ultimately gained. I do not suspect they would be entirely against trying again.

As far as TV money is concerned, the Big East was rather pathetic when it came to its TV deal for football, but they lacked the markets and coverage that this new conference would have. Would this new conference score big time money? No. The ACC, Big Ten, SEC, and Big 12 rake in about $20m per school. This conference would have a lot to prove before it can begin to dream of that sort of payday for its members. But even a modest $6m per year per school would earn AAC schools double and MWC schools 4-fold.

As far as ESPN's interests are concerned, I would be surprised if they saw this as a bad deal. If they do, I think NBC would be game.
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  #10  
Old 01-12-17, 03:38 PM
Saint Columban Saint Columban is offline
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Again, espn already has all of these schools for a steal. why on earth would they be willing to pay more for the exact same product?
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  #11  
Old 01-12-17, 03:52 PM
adselder09 adselder09 is offline
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They won't merge and they shouldn't merge. Any reasoning being used to show that they should merge is just wishful thinking.
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  #12  
Old 01-12-17, 04:06 PM
Crusaders Crusaders is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Columban View Post
Again, espn already has all of these schools for a steal. why on earth would they be willing to pay more for the exact same product?
Not saying this would ever happen but it is dumb to say it would be the same product
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  #13  
Old 01-12-17, 04:25 PM
Saint Columban Saint Columban is offline
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it would be the exact same teams they already have tv rights to. in fact they'd be losing 8 schools, so its actually expecting more money for less product. how is pointing that out dumb?
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  #14  
Old 01-12-17, 04:35 PM
Crusaders Crusaders is offline
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Because the way you arrive at value isn't the number of teams you're paying for, it's which teams and the quality of the product on offer. If you plucked Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Wisconsin from the Big Ten and merged them with Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor, OK State, TCU, Kansas State, and WVU, that conference would command more per team than the Big 10 or Big 12 as they are today.
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  #15  
Old 01-12-17, 09:18 PM
Saint Columban Saint Columban is offline
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Comparing a big12/big10 merger to the aac/mountain west and you're calling me dumb. Wow.

Yes combining the best teams from leagues would make a more competitive conference, but when the same network already owns both leagues why would you expect them to pay more? The increased value you assumed doesn't exist. It might be fun for fans but makes zero business sense. Otherwise it would have already been done since these programs are looking for any way to gain revenue.
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  #16  
Old 01-12-17, 10:05 PM
Crusaders Crusaders is offline
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You're dumb for thinking that just because ESPN owns the rights to the teams that they're getting the same product in the current setup as they would in this hypothetical one. That was the point being made with the Big 10 + Big 12 example. You're also dumb for not understand that analogy.

If ESPN can trim the fat (programs like Wyoming, Tulane, New Mexico, etc.) and gain a much more interesting conference at the same time, they're absolutely going to take that. Whether they'll pay $6m per team is another matter, but they would definitely agree to pay more than they are now if they really wanted those rights.
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  #17  
Old 01-15-17, 01:16 PM
CincyHSFootballFan CincyHSFootballFan is offline
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The missing part to this whole discussion is that sports programming is in the middle of it's bubble bursting. ESPN is in pretty bad financial trouble, I doubt you see anyone getting more tv revenue, most agree that when contracts come up you will see a shift back in terms of the money these networks are willing to pay. Ratings are down big time across the board. So I think you can keep this conversation in fantasy land, as ESPN is not looking to pay more for content, idc if it's marginally better content.
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  #18  
Old 01-16-17, 06:09 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adselder09 View Post
They won't merge and they shouldn't merge. Any reasoning being used to show that they should merge is just wishful thinking.
This is a hypothetical conversation. If you did not wish to engage in it, why post at all?
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  #19  
Old 01-16-17, 06:14 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Columban View Post
Again, espn already has all of these schools for a steal. why on earth would they be willing to pay more for the exact same product?
They have access to the schools, true, but also competition of lesser intrigue. This hypothetical conference would produce a number of ranked match ups per seasons. ESPN would have no choice but to accept a higher payout per team, else they risk the conference signing with another network.
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  #20  
Old 01-16-17, 06:23 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CincyHSFootballFan View Post
The missing part to this whole discussion is that sports programming is in the middle of it's bubble bursting. ESPN is in pretty bad financial trouble, I doubt you see anyone getting more tv revenue, most agree that when contracts come up you will see a shift back in terms of the money these networks are willing to pay. Ratings are down big time across the board. So I think you can keep this conversation in fantasy land, as ESPN is not looking to pay more for content, idc if it's marginally better content.
This is a complicated situation. ESPN could attempt to bargain for smaller payouts per team, but what's to stop the SEC from going to CBS (completely), NBC, or FOX? The same goes for any of the other P5 conferences. I'm sure those networks would love to bolster their sports network offerings with P5 football.

The future is probably not ESPN paying less money to a conference, but simply paying for fewer of them. This actually may play into the hands of this hypothetical conference. ESPN could lose the PAC 12, Big 12, or ACC and they'll likely need (and seek) a cheap option to fill the void. If they can trade $20m per school for $6m per school while retaining a decent number of ranked games to play on Thursday or Friday night, I think they would absolutely take that deal.
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  #21  
Old 01-16-17, 07:47 PM
CincyHSFootballFan CincyHSFootballFan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Grumbleman View Post
This is a complicated situation. ESPN could attempt to bargain for smaller payouts per team, but what's to stop the SEC from going to CBS (completely), NBC, or FOX? The same goes for any of the other P5 conferences. I'm sure those networks would love to bolster their sports network offerings with P5 football.

The future is probably not ESPN paying less money to a conference, but simply paying for fewer of them. This actually may play into the hands of this hypothetical conference. ESPN could lose the PAC 12, Big 12, or ACC and they'll likely need (and seek) a cheap option to fill the void. If they can trade $20m per school for $6m per school while retaining a decent number of ranked games to play on Thursday or Friday night, I think they would absolutely take that deal.
Fox and CBS are also losing serious money on sports programming. The issue is fewer people have cable or tv packages. Ratings are declining. Although I cited ESPN, the issue is universal. Now I do agree Fox will probably go after the Big 10 hard but the difference between the haves and have nots is about to get even greater as the networks allocate all their money for only the top few conferences and look to pay very little for the rest. The peak of TV dollars is in the rear view mirror. As a whole that is. So when fox looks at getting the Big Ten they may offer a huge deal but I bet the Big East gets less money the next go around for its basketball conference.
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  #22  
Old 01-16-17, 11:19 PM
Crusaders Crusaders is offline
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I think FS1 is actually growing and performing well
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  #23  
Old 01-17-17, 03:28 AM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CincyHSFootballFan View Post
Fox and CBS are also losing serious money on sports programming. The issue is fewer people have cable or tv packages. Ratings are declining. Although I cited ESPN, the issue is universal. Now I do agree Fox will probably go after the Big 10 hard but the difference between the haves and have nots is about to get even greater as the networks allocate all their money for only the top few conferences and look to pay very little for the rest. The peak of TV dollars is in the rear view mirror. As a whole that is. So when fox looks at getting the Big Ten they may offer a huge deal but I bet the Big East gets less money the next go around for its basketball conference.
You can keep banging this drum if you want but I believe if ESPN were to lose a P5 conference, they would agree to replace it with this hypothetical one for a relatively cheaper price.
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  #24  
Old 01-17-17, 03:31 AM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Originally Posted by Crusaders View Post
I think FS1 is actually growing and performing well
Almost all of the cable sports networks are losing subscribers, FOX 1 is just losing them a bit more slowly than ESPN and NBC (source).
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  #25  
Old 01-17-17, 12:06 PM
adselder09 adselder09 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Grumbleman View Post
This is a hypothetical conversation. If you did not wish to engage in it, why post at all?
I did engage and gave my input. They won't merge nor should they. All of this "hypothetical” talk about a merge and potentially becoming the ”6th Power Conference" is wishful thinking.
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  #26  
Old 01-17-17, 12:16 PM
adselder09 adselder09 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Grumbleman View Post
They have access to the schools, true, but also competition of lesser intrigue. This hypothetical conference would produce a number of ranked match ups per seasons. ESPN would have no choice but to accept a higher payout per team, else they risk the conference signing with another network.
Not necessarily. Again wishful thinking on your part. The MWC had two teams ranked all season, neither at the same time. The AAC had three teams ranked, but only two at the same time.
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  #27  
Old 01-17-17, 12:21 PM
adselder09 adselder09 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Grumbleman View Post
You can keep banging this drum if you want but I believe if ESPN were to lose a P5 conference, they would agree to replace it with this hypothetical one for a relatively cheaper price.
They would not form a new conference to fill the void. They would just create new deals for the current conferences in place. You're the one being this hypothetical scenario with no merit or proof behind it. You believe ESPN would do it? Do you work or know anyone close who works for ESPN? Truth of the matter is, you don't know jack. You're hoping these smaller schools can create a big conference to stay relevant.
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  #28  
Old 01-17-17, 04:30 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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I don't hope for anything. The two conferences can stay as they are for all I care. This is just a hypothetical conversation I find interesting. If all you're going to do is call this stupid, make baseless accusations, and not engage in the discussion, then stay out of it. I don't care if it upsets you
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  #29  
Old 01-17-17, 04:31 PM
Max Grumbleman Max Grumbleman is offline
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Originally Posted by adselder09 View Post
Not necessarily. Again wishful thinking on your part. The MWC had two teams ranked all season, neither at the same time. The AAC had three teams ranked, but only two at the same time.
How in the world is it wishful thinking to suggest that this conference, which would have had 5 ranked teams throughout this past season, would have the potential to produce multiple ranked match ups? Are you going to use your brain or just mindless bash the topic?
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  #30  
Old 01-18-17, 09:14 AM
adselder09 adselder09 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Grumbleman View Post
How in the world is it wishful thinking to suggest that this conference, which would have had 5 ranked teams throughout this past season, would have the potential to produce multiple ranked match ups? Are you going to use your brain or just mindless bash the topic?
If you read my post you'd see that it wouldn't have created more ranked matchups. The MWC never had two teams ranked at the same time, and the AAC had 2-3 weeks with two teams ranked at the same time. So it likely would have had the same number of ranked team matchups or less considering these teams would knock each other off and out of the rankings.

In your scenario, you have a total of 16 teams. So each team would play 7 members from their division and either one or two crossover games. Basically what you'd have is the AAC playing AAC teams and MWC playing MWC, with each team playing one OOC game against the other. That sort of schedule could be done without merging the two conferences.

Nothing about this upsets me, I'm just pointing out the holes in your argument.
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