A case for football independence, Part II

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nelsonmuntz

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What if UConn was invited into a conference for basketball only:

UConn would make $4-5MM a year just for men's and women's basketball.

There were more Top 50 program in this conference, and very few programs that finished outside the top 150.

The conference had a lot of historically strong programs and historical rivalries that could draw more fans to XL/Gampel.

The conference would get UConn games in NYC for recruiting.

UConn would still be on its own for football.

The conference was the ACC.

Would you be in favor of that?
 
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I could see it. The Big 12 could add BYU and UConn in FB only. The trouble is that UConn does not bring the FB value that is does in the other sports like BB and WBB. There might have to be a scheduling agreement or something similar to get some UConn vs KU, KSU, ISU, BB games and some UConn vs Baylor, WVU, OSU, and OU in WBB.

I don't see going indy being a smarty move. That really only works for a few schools, either religious based or military based. The majority of indy FB teams are not that way by choice. If you were going to go indy I'd think having more of your valuable sports might be better.
 

nelsonmuntz

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Unless the AAC let us stay as a football only (less than 50/50 chance IMO), UConn would be indy for football in my scenario.
 
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I still think scheduling would be extremely difficult. We already have trouble scheduling decent programs, and that's with a built-in schedule of games. Having to schedule an entire season's worth of games without a conference will be tricky. Notre Dame and BYU have the history for it. Not saying it's impossible, but I think the disadvantages outweigh the advantages in this scenario.
 

WestHartHusk

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It would depend on the contract.

First, I would want $7M to take a deal like this (don't forget, we are getting ~$6M now) and equal split of tourney credits.

Second, the contract would have to stipulate that if ND joins, we are in as #16 in football.

Third, the contract would further have to stipulate that if ND didn't join within 8 years we were free to leave without penalty;

Fourth; the penalty for leaving would have to be lower ~$20M.

Meet the above, then yes.
 

Dooley

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No. We're not just a basketball school. We have an excellent soccer program, rising baseball program, and moving hockey to Hockey East. And for cryin' out loud, football just had ONE bad coach. Let's give Diaco and his staff a few years before we are willing to give our football program the death sentence.

3-5 Year B1G Plan. We're in Year 2. Basketball has been restored as a Top 5 Elite. Now we need to restore football and get back to bowl games like we did under Edsall. That means rallying behind it, not kicking it to the Independent curb.
 
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What about a special TV deal like what Boise did in the MW? Keeping rights to home FB games or in your case it might be more valuable to keep more of the MBB and WBB games to sell and let the conference have the FB games.
This would allow you to make more money while still being in the AAC. The real issues is bargaining power. Right now UConn does not have another spot like Boise did when they negotiated the sweetheart deal with the MW.
 

Husky25

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What about a special TV deal like what Boise did in the MW? Keeping rights to home FB games or in your case it might be more valuable to keep more of the MBB and WBB games to sell and let the conference have the FB games.
This would allow you to make more money while still being in the AAC. The real issues is bargaining power. Right now UConn does not have another spot like Boise did when they negotiated the sweetheart deal with the MW.
Boise was also coming off double digit win seasons and a string of BCS games. UConn is 13-23 over their last 36.
 
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Boise was also coming off double digit win seasons and a string of BCS games. UConn is 13-23 over their last 36.
And UConn is coming off a MBB championship and possibly more. I don't think you would want to keep your FB rights as I dont' know that they would be that valuable by themselves. I do think you could keep your BB and WBB rights and make a nice chunk of change selling off that content. Honestly asking to keep what the conference likely considers the less valuable content to them might work. Even if you only got half the home games in BB and WBB you would have a nice package of content.
 

pj

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No.

Not if it was called the Big East either.

Nelson, you want to sacrifice everything for a few million dollars in TV contracts. UConn men's basketball makes about $30 * 10,000 seats * 18 home games = $5.4 mn from men's basketball gate admissions, add in other sports, etc, etc, and the difference between Big East and AAC media money is tiny compared to UConn's athletic revenue which totals well over $60 mn annually. Moreover the AAC media money will be quite a bit bigger than the Big East media money in the next contract.

So for a 5% bump in revenue you are asking us to throw football overboard (which would reduce revenue by 30-50%) plus sabotage chances at moving to the B1G or ACC by sacrificing the dominant sport. It is totally irrational.
 
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No.....double no !!!!!!

My brother was a volunteer at the womens final 4 in Nashville. Had an opportunity to speak with a lot of college coaches giving clinics.

Had a long discussion with Pat Summit's son, who was a former ass't coach at Marquette (?) I believe if I heard right. Both he and the head Marquette coach left the new BE because they felt it was going nowhere. Lost a lot of glitz when the larger schools left for other conferences. Both took positions in P-5 basketball programs.

Agree with Dooley. UConn supports many student athletes in a lot of different programs. Its just not a basketball school and simply should not discount the efforts those students exhibit in non revenue spots.

Give Diaco a chance to return the FB program to respectability and helps land UConn in a major all sports conference that will generate much more revenue than a "basketball only" conference for the benefit of all UConn student athletes and their chosen sport. UConn can not and should not maintain a small focus on one sport!
 

Husky25

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And UConn is coming off a MBB championship and possibly more. I don't think you would want to keep your FB rights as I dont' know that they would be that valuable by themselves. I do think you could keep your BB and WBB rights and make a nice chunk of change selling off that content. Honestly asking to keep what the conference likely considers the less valuable content to them might work. Even if you only got half the home games in BB and WBB you would have a nice package of content.
No conference (especially the AAC and especially after a national championship) in their right mind would allow UConn to back Basketball out of a TV deal without consideration. It is currently UConn's most valuable asset (and would take a *ton of consideration) and it is tied up with and controlled by the AAC. It takes two to open up a contract for renegotiation.
 
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No conference (especially the AAC and especially after a national championship) in their right mind would allow UConn to back Basketball out of a TV deal without consideration. It is currently UConn's most valuable asset (and would take a *ton of consideration) and it is tied up with and controlled by the AAC. It takes two to open up a contract for renegotiation.
If you say so. I'm not sure that AAC basketball really has that much value, My guess is the FB games bring the vast majority of the $ in the contract. I don't follow your thinking. Boise played well for a few years and was able to turn that success into a improved TV deal compared to the rest of the conference. UConn is having a great year in BB and WBB. Seems like that success could be similar to what Boise did and allow a better TV deal to be reached. the problem is that you already signed the TV deal.

I think if Boise could pull it off there is no reason UConn could not do something similar if the timing was different. Especially considering you would be leaving what is the most valuable content for the conference in FB and asking for some less valuable BB and WBB games. I just think it sucks that UConn is likely worth at least double what you are paid for your TV rights but because you are sharing all that money with the AAC is really drags you down supporting those schools.

In the end staying put and doing everything you can to advance the FB program is likely the best strategy. The independent option, big east option, football only, etc.. are more like last resorts IMO that should only be used if it is obvious that UConn is not going to get in a power conference.
 
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What if UConn was invited into a conference for basketball only:

UConn would make $4-5MM a year just for men's and women's basketball.

There were more Top 50 program in this conference, and very few programs that finished outside the top 150.

The conference had a lot of historically strong programs and historical rivalries that could draw more fans to XL/Gampel.

The conference would get UConn games in NYC for recruiting.

UConn would still be on its own for football.

The conference was the ACC.

Would you be in favor of that?
Forget it its not even a consideration!! Small thinking like that is counterproductive! Think positive.....be bold and powerful forces will come to your aid!! Others may be reading this very board gauging our fanbase psyche/strength of confidence and we want them KNOWING we belong not wondering.Btw guy's, congrats on your newest trophy case addition.B1G or bust....
 

Husky25

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If you say so. I'm not sure that AAC basketball really has that much value, My guess is the FB games bring the vast majority of the $ in the contract. I don't follow your thinking. Boise played well for a few years and was able to turn that success into a improved TV deal compared to the rest of the conference. UConn is having a great year in BB and WBB. Seems like that success could be similar to what Boise did and allow a better TV deal to be reached. the problem is that you already signed the TV deal.
I think if Boise could pull it off there is no reason UConn could not do something similar if the timing was different. Especially considering you would be leaving what is the most valuable content for the conference in FB and asking for some less valuable BB and WBB games. I just think it sucks that UConn is likely worth at least double what you are paid for your TV rights but because you are sharing all that money with the AAC is really drags you down supporting those schools.
In the end staying put and doing everything you can to advance the FB program is likely the best strategy. The independent option, big east option, football only, etc.. are more like last resorts IMO that should only be used if it is obvious that UConn is not going to get in a power conference.
I don't know the particulars of Boise's deal, but if I'm not mistaken, Boise made a series of short term deals between the MWC, the Big West, and the WAC and were able to retain rights to football. Remember, there was a time that Boise was supposed to join the Big East (The only think Idaho is east of is Washington state). The AAC deal already contains UConn's most valuable asset. They aren't going to readily give it up.

As I said before Football Independence is a non-starter. The AAC is either 1 or 2 in the G5 pecking order and UConn is already having trouble filling its OOC schedule with quality opponents. What do you (the royal you) think the obstacles would be like to fill all 12 weekends? Good Grief!!! Who would you expect to attend UConn with an inconstant opportunity (at best) at a post season bowl game? It ain't happening.
 
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I don't know the particulars of Boise's deal, but if I'm not mistaken, Boise made a series of short term deals between the MWC, the Big West, and the WAC and were able to retain rights to football. Remember, there was a time that Boise was supposed to join the Big East (The only think Idaho is east of is Washington state). The AAC deal already contains UConn's most valuable asset. They aren't going to readily give it up.

As I said before Football Independence is a non-starter. The AAC is either 1 or 2 in the G5 pecking order and UConn is already having trouble filling its OOC schedule with quality opponents. What do you (the royal you) think the obstacles would be like to fill all 12 weekends? Good Grief!!! Who would you expect to attend UConn with an inconstant opportunity (at best) at a post season bowl game? It ain't happening.
The royal me??? Please stop being so sensitive. It's simply not necessary.

I think you must be misunderstanding me. This scenario has nothing to do with going independent. Nothing. I'm saying that you could keep all your sports in the AAC and have a special deal where you retain TV rights for certain games, much like Boise did in the MW. You would not have to worry about filling your schedule, you already would have 8-9 games in the AAC. I don't see that it would be that difficult to fill a 3-4 game OOC schedule, everyone else in the country manages to do it.

The reality is that you are supporting at least 1 if not 2 schools in the AAC at this point by sharing all your income with the conference.

But, as you pointed out the contract is signed and can't be renegotiated at this point. The only way to pull something like this off is to do what Boise did. Threaten to leave. The AAC is down to bare bones at this point and if they loss UConn it would really hurt. I think if you had negotiated this back when the conference was being put together you probably could have pulled it off. In the end it won't matter as you will get an invite at some point to joint a power conference. But is it fun to discuss all these different scenarios.
 

Husky25

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The royal me??? Please stop being so sensitive. It's simply not necessary.
You've never seen The Big Lebowski? That's a shame. It's pure art. The "royal you" means "you" in general as in You all, or in your terms Y'all.

I think you must be misunderstanding me. This scenario has nothing to do with going independent. Nothing. I'm saying that you could keep all your sports in the AAC and have a special deal where you retain TV rights for certain games, much like Boise did in the MW. You would not have to worry about filling your schedule, you already would have 8-9 games in the AAC. I don't see that it would be that difficult to fill a 3-4 game OOC schedule, everyone else in the country manages to do it.

The reality is that you are supporting at least 1 if not 2 schools in the AAC at this point by sharing all your income with the conference.

But, as you pointed out the contract is signed and can't be renegotiated at this point. The only way to pull something like this off is to do what Boise did. Threaten to leave. The AAC is down to bare bones at this point and if they loss UConn it would really hurt. I think if you had negotiated this back when the conference was being put together you probably could have pulled it off. In the end it won't matter as you will get an invite at some point to joint a power conference. But is it fun to discuss all these different scenarios.
I understand you perfectly. I just reiterated my thoughts on independence. It's not a last resort, IMO. It's a not going to happen. I get that UConn may be supporting the AAC, but aren't FSU, Clemson, Duke, and UNC supporting the ACC? Aren't Texas and OU are supporting the Big 12? Michigan, OSU, and MSU supporting the Big Ten? It is what it is.

The scenario you lay out cannot happen until the current deal expires. At that point, who knows what sort of options the conference or the programs hold.
 
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We should only consider it if the payout to us will equal other P5 TV payout per team. Anything less, screw that. We might as well stay in the AAC and grow our brand.

AAC basketball won't be bad in the next few years. Memphis, UCONN and SMU will all be top 25 pre-season. We also got Temple and Cincy plus Houston just hired Kelvin Sampson. This will be a pretty solid basketball league.
 
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