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PAC-10 EXPANSION: Some thoughts on the mysterious TV savior

So, Chip Brown says that an unnamed TV network has swooped in to save the Big 12 to prevent chaos of realignment:

Once Neb and CU made their moves, a TV network saw realignment about to blow and stepped forward with the plan stop chaos and save B12.less than a minute ago via TweetDeck


Count me among those who were really skeptical initially that such a deal truly existed. But the more I think about it, the more it makes a heck of a lot of sense for ESPN this unnamed television network to do whatever it can to keep the megaconference at bay.

Even if ESPN the unnamed television network is overpaying to keep the Big 12 alive, it's probably less than what they'd have to pay to keep the Pac-16 away from Fox; the last thing ESPN the unnamed network wants is a bidding war.

However, in a lot of ways, this still doesn't pass the sniff test. If ESPN the unnamed network is willing to go to such lengths to keep the Big 12 intact, doesn't that speak volumes about the potential revenue possibilities of the new conference? I mean, this new proposal from Beebe is already less for most of the schools in the conference than what the Pac-16 was offering ... well, take it away Mr. Grippi:

Makes me wonder how such a jump can occur with two fewer schools, no championship game and the loss of football-mad Nebraska? If it’s true, shouldn’t Beebe be fired for being unable to get such a deal before, when there were still 12 schools in the conference? And if those numbers pan out, shouldn’t an expanded Pac-10, with much more lucrative TV markets, be able to bring a boatload more than that, like say another $6 million each? Maybe not. Math was never my forte. But it just seems hinky that such a huge number wasn’t mentioned before.

And if you want some hardcore number crunching on just how much money might be available to a superconference, you can check out this Forbes piece that Grippi dug up. In brief, we might be selling the Pac-16's profitability short.

Let's hope the athletics directors in the Big 12 are as forward thinking as Larry Scott and not motivated by fear.

Whoops! Forgot the Forbes link. Here you go.