Disturbing Big 10 development for MU.....
Posted on: June 9, 2010 at 11:53:06 CT
Here is the latest, and very distrubing, news on the Big 10 front. NU has received an offer from the Big 10, and will accept the invitation over the objection of Osborne who has described himslef as getting "cold feet" recently over the move. However, others "above his pay-grade" have already made the call, and Nebraska is going to the Big 10.
MU has not received an offer, and likely will not for the foreseeable future. Although we had reached an "understanding" with the Big 10, Notre Dame has since reentered the picture and has "refused to be put on a clock" concerning their decision for membership in the Big 10. Thus, the Big 10 is now making the decision to offer only Nebraska and take a wait-and-see approach on further offers for now until the Notre Dame issue is resolved.
Now, this is where it has gotten very scary for us: Texas has made it very clear to all involved that they have 5 other institutions waiting to, in their words, "bolt for the Pac 10" the moment Nebraska announces its agreement with the Big 10. This, according to them, is a "done deal" with the Pac 10 (As a parentthetical, it appears that Baylor, not CU will be part of that move, given Texas' insistence to the Pac 10, but I did not verify that fact for certain).
Thus, here is the position we are now in. Texas' (and other's) lawyers have concluded that it takes a simple majority to dissolve the Big 12. After Nebrasksa announces, the gang of six, either with or without Nebraska, can vote to dissolve the Big 12 as a conference (which they would all have a massive vested financial interest in doing). This would have the legal effect of, among other things, removing the financial penalties for withdrawl from the conference (estimted at almost $15 million per leaving institution, or roughly $105 million in total), as well as removing us as a BCS conference and dissolving our TV contract. In essence, we are about to be left holding an empty bag with very little recourse if any.
Why would the Big 10 do this to us? Jim delany is a shark, and he gets/understands all of the above. By simply bringing in one big 12 school (Nebraska, not MU), he can destroy the Big 12 as a conference (his major competitor for the midwest market) and still leave himself up to 5 slots to play with (Delaney, as he should be, cares only about what is best for his employer. This is business to him). He can then offer MU at his leisure at a later date, or not, as they see fit. Furthermore, Delaney gets that MU has some bargaining leverage at the moment as a member of the Big 12. Remove that membership (which everyone now gets will follow with certitude), and MU will clearly be willing to entertain a future Big 10 offer at a much better price for the Big 10 than what we would take toady. So even if the Big 10 ultimately wants MU, they still can get us but at a price that saves their membership millions fo dollars (i.e. - We, unlike Nebraska, will not be given full equity partnership for several years at a minimum - Or would need to buy our way in).
I wish it were not so. But I am certain that what I just wrote is about to befall us. Ugh.