Red roundup: Was Pac-10 expansion worth it?

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  • Ibleedcrimson Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 15, 2011 7:24 p.m.

    BluCoug I think the word your looking for is dependent, I guess the PAC10 was right about BYU academically.

  • BluCoug Provo, UT
    May 14, 2011 11:48 p.m.

    Of course it is worth it, why wouldn't it be! Especially when you are depended on others.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    May 14, 2011 8:24 a.m.

    Two hundred words is not enough for the full story that was spread over many weeks, and many proposals.

    PAC16 - The first proposal (probably from Texas) was for Texas, Texas Tech, Texas A&M, Baylor, UO, and OK ST. PAC wouldn't take Baylor and made the switch / offer for Colorado. That move was probably the demise of the possibility of the PAC16, because Texas legislature was going to put up a fight to keep Baylor with Texas. Texas A&M was then being lured by SEC, and Utah become the possible replacement.

    When PAC16 fell through, Colorado had already been offered. PAC12 still wanted Texas (with Colorado). When Texas rebuffed, Utah was offered and that's that.

  • Utes21 Salt Lake City, ut
    May 13, 2011 2:55 p.m.

    Dude Baylor was never apart of the deal what are you talking about? The PAC would never allow a faith based university in like Baylor. Thats the biggest reason why byu wasnt invited. You can thank Stanford for that cougar fans.
    Also your sources arent very good. Did you read the last part of the LA Times? It says even if Texas and others decide to stay in the Big 12, the Pac-10 would still make a move to expand by two schools sources.
    Utah has been on there radar for a long time, Scott knew that Texas A&M would not join the conference because of offer from the SEC. Utah would have been apart of the super conference. I am not most like Ute fans I would have liked byu coming over with Utah it would have been great for both schools but again because its owned by the church it was a huge no from the officials at Stanford.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    May 12, 2011 10:58 p.m.

    @daedalus10, I'm not sure why you and some of your friends are so defensive about this issue. I'm not trying make Utah look bad. I'm just stating a fact that Utah was not part of the original 6 teams planned for PAC16 expansion. Think about it . . . if Utah was at the top of their list regardless of whether it was to be a 12 or 16 team conference, they would have gotten an invite at the same time as Colorado.

    Here's another article if you didn't believe the LA Times article. Please google, Pac-10 Conference poised to invite 6 Big 12 Conference teams
    and read the ESPN article.

  • daedalus10 Salt Lake City, UT
    May 12, 2011 7:43 p.m.

    CougFaninTX, you shouldn't lie and give a good way to look up your reference.

    I did google the LA times blog post by Chris Dufresne, "Pac-10 poised to become 16-team conference."

    There was not a single direct quote from Larry Scott. The closest that it came to was the blogger saying, "Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott said last week that the league was working on possibilities that could be revolutionary."

    CougfanTX, you are just ANOTHER cougar fan who is willing to lie to attempt to make Utah look bad.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    May 12, 2011 4:39 p.m.

    Since I can't add links on here, please research LA Times, June 9, 2010 article title Pac-10 poised to become 16-team conference. You will see that Utah was not part of planned Pac-16. There are direct quotes from Larry Scott, not a reporter.

    After you've read it, and recognize that I am correct, I will be happy to move on.

  • Utah'95 FPO, AE
    May 12, 2011 10:15 a.m.

    There is evidence that the Pac 10 had been considering adding Utah for several years. Isn't it possible that Larry Scott decided to "swing for the fences" by offering Texas a spot in response to the quickly-changing landscape in the Big 12 (Nebraska moving to the Big 10, and Colorado committing to come West)?

    I'm a lifelong Utah fan, but I admit freely that Texas would have been a better addition to the Pac 10 than Utah. According to several sites, the Longhorns are the "most valuable" NCAA football team - they would be more desirable than ANY TEAM, to any conference.

    The possibility that the Pac 10 may have factored in weakening the quickly improving MWC in their decision-making is something I had not considered. It is an interesting theory.

  • utesovertide Salt Lake City, UT
    May 12, 2011 10:13 a.m.


    Not according to Chip Brown, from orangebloods. He was one of the closest reporters to the deal and said Utah always had a seat.

    Also, the Pac 10 presidents approved each expansion scenario, so they knew that Utah Colorado as additions was a possibility, and unanimously approved it. This is all information that has been out there for almost 1 year. Please educate yourself on it.

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    May 12, 2011 9:55 a.m.


    You are spinning the same refrain that has been discredited for several months now. My information comes from the stellar reporting of Chip Brown of Austin, Texas who covers the Big 12-2. His reporting on how the whole expansion thing went down between the PAC 10 and Big 12 was based on several interviews with the Texas AD DeLoss Dodds and all the AD's in the Big 12. But I have learned that fans like yourself will keep spinning it your way regardless of more accurate reporting because you want to believe what you want to believe. I stand by my posted comment because it agrees with what Chip Brown reported. The other fact is that the PAC 10 presidents were considering Utah and Colorado for expansion back in 2004 and that is based on statements made by former PAC 10 commissioner Tom Hanson. The deals are done. There is a PAC 12. Utah and Colorado are in. You need to move on.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    May 12, 2011 9:34 a.m.

    @ dutchman and gonefishn

    You were both close, but you both missed it. The PAC16 expansion included Texas, Texas Tech, Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, and Colorado. When Big12 was formed, Texas legislature forced the conference to take Baylor over TCU. They were very clear this time around that Baylor would again stay in the same conference as Texas.

    Again, this is not a knock on Utah. I'm sure that any school from a non-AQ conference would accept an invitation to join the PAC12. I'm just saying that I don't think the PAC10 ADs and Presidents would have approved expansion if they knew they would only end up with Colorado and Utah. The wanted Texas and the treasure chest that would have come with it.

    Whether you want to believe it or not, Colorado and Utah are also not the reason for the huge TV deal. The only thing these schools bring (financially) is the opportunity for a conference championship game and the money that comes with it.

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    May 11, 2011 9:54 p.m.


    "no one in Oregon is excited about Utah and Colorado joining"

    Well, at least two people are excited, the Presidents of Oregon and Oregon State Universities who voted to admit Utah and Colorado.

    By the way, Utah and Colorado have been in the expansion talks for your conference since the days when Tom Hanson was your commissioner. Just be glad that a state with 3.5 million people like yours has two PAC 12 teams as members.

  • KamUte South Jordan, UT
    May 11, 2011 9:52 p.m.


    Who cares what you think? Is Oregon one of the PAC 12 elite?The 9-15 bowl record is very impressive. How many bcs bowls has Oregon won? I can count the victory on one finger. For an elite program, your record against Utah or BYU for that matter is not impressive either. Not as elite as most would think The dogs from Utah have actually accomplished more with less. Without Phil Knight, Oregon would simply be no better than Eugene Community College. Utah may be a dog right now but our dogs will be more competitive than most of the conference of champions. Won't it be fun having Stanford playing in snow on December 7 for the championship?

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    May 11, 2011 9:23 p.m.


    That really wasn't a knock on Utah although I can see how you took it that way. The rejection by Texas and the other Big12 schools was an embarrassment to the pac10 as they fancy themselves the ultimate conference. Taking Utah was in part, not completely but in part, to save face from that rejection.

    But ultimately it doesn't matter because it went the way it went and Utah is now a pac10 member and will get all of the benefits of that membership. If wilner is correct then it is undeniable that the additions of Utah and colorado add monetary value so whatever the anciliary reasons for all that happened really are ultimately Utah and colorado have earned inclusion.

    But I do believe the rejection from the Big12 schools was an ebarrassment for the pac10 but they still seem to have bounced back nicely.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    May 11, 2011 9:00 p.m.

    @ Moderate:

    I agree with you. Utah is in the PAC 12 and USU should just forget about playing them.

    Oh, you meant BYU? I think they have split with the Utes. I see no reason to continue the (new) rivalry game as BYU has nothing to gain by playing it. Or the other (old) rivalry game (U of U vs USU) for that matter. BYU used to be able to brag that they stopped Utah from winning a conference championship, or visa versa, but the historical members of the PAC 12 will do that now each year in a fairly routine manner. No one else need apply, except Colorado. They need to beat Utah as badly as Utah will need to beat them.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    May 11, 2011 8:25 p.m.

    A True Summary Of Facts:
    1) One team from Utah is a Pac 12 member.
    2) The other team will never progress if it can't let go of #1

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    May 11, 2011 8:11 p.m.

    It's a fact that Utah was #12 of 12 when making up the PAC 12. How can you say they were "always in" the mix when there was a hesitation before they were officially invited? They are tied for last place with the smallest stadium in the PAC 12. In fact, they don't even have the largest stadium in Utah although it is bigger than USU's. Colorado fans are into the Broncos, Nuggetts and Rockies. I don't see or hear about any of them drooling over the Buffs and their lousy program. So I guess maybe the PAC 12 got a championship game, a great TV deal and two new "botton feeders." It remains to be proven differently on a week-to-week basis that the Utes can play with the big boys and not just win a bowl game where they were overlooked by the competition. Last year they got lucky in 4 games and showed their weakness against a few better teams. Good luck in the PAC 12--hope it was worth the money because that's all either you or they got out of it.

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    May 11, 2011 7:46 p.m.

    "Wow. Duckhunter and TJ seem so reasonable and non-provocative today. How refreshing."


    "The truth is all the hot chicks said no so we got what we got. The PAC10 knew they could offer Utah a can of Alpo and they'd come running."

    LOL x 10

    Funniest comment yet on the expansion... from a PAC-10 perspective.

  • Oregonian Sherwood, OR
    May 11, 2011 6:43 p.m.

    Dutchman, gonefishn-

    Yeah sure, the PAC10 started expansion saying, "Let's get Utah and anyone else that will come." The truth is all the hot chicks said no so we got what we got. The PAC10 knew they could offer Utah a can of Alpo and they'd come running. Frankly, no one in Oregon is excited about Utah and Colorado joining at the expense of our teams losing the yearly USC/UCLA home and home matchups. While the TV deal is great, we could have ended up with more per team without expansion. The games they will televise pretty much shows how much TV execs think the two newbies will add to the bottom line; one for Colorado (against USC) and zilch for Utah.

  • MiP Iowa City, IA
    May 11, 2011 6:20 p.m.

    Veritas: ditto.

    As far as "worth it": only time will tell. Of course, it's guys like Wilner who are supposed to analyze in depth. But his article? How is that even printable? It's neither entertaining nor practical...I made it half-way through and said "why am I reading this?" (much like you are doing with my post right about now). He's going a long, long, long way to prove a point that's well, pointless.

    Let's look at the SEC. They expanded to 12 by adding Arkansas and South Carolina. Neither have won the conference, though the Hogs went to a BCS bowl last year. But it would be hard to argue that their addition has hurt a conference that was already pretty strong. By creating the divisions and the conference championship game, the BCS era became (ahem, as much as I can't stand it) the SEC era.

    The PAC-12/Larry Scott, as well as Delaney/Big-10, are simply copying a business model that has worked before.

    My hunch is that it will work out just fine.

  • Magna Ute Fan Magna, UT
    May 11, 2011 6:09 p.m.

    Wow. Duckhunter and TJ seem so reasonable and non-provocative today. How refreshing.

  • WHAT NOW? Saint George, UT
    May 11, 2011 6:04 p.m.

    San Jose Mercury News writer...

    San Jose St. is in the PAC 12?

    When San Jose St. becomes a member of the the PAC 12 (13,14,15,16), Wilner will have an opinion that matters.

    Until that happens, go back to the WAC...

  • Ibleedcrimson Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 11, 2011 4:50 p.m.

    "USC (and maybe others) are already asking for a higher percentage of the new TV deal with the threat of exploring independence or another conference."

    Is this a "summary of the facts."

    care to show us any credible source from USC or any other PAC 10 school thats saying this for the record?

  • gonefishn Salt Lake City, UT
    May 11, 2011 4:49 p.m.

    You are not correct, The Pac was going to expand with or without Texas. The Texas angle was not being persued until the Big 12 started to self destruct. Texas then became the big fish and Utah took a back seat. With that said many national articles at the time stated that even if Texas went to the Pac 12 / 16 the Pac did not want Kstate, Kansas (kansas committed to kstate to not leave them), Mizzou, Baylor, Texas Tech, Iowa State. Nebraska went to the Big 10 and Colorado was in the PAC to be joined by Texas, Texas A&M, OKLA, OKLA State and Utah.

    WSU, OSU, and UofA are very large land grant, state universities that are research institutions, similar to most schools in the conference, Fact.
    "Bias vs. Mormons" = sour grapes. Don't be a victim

  • Veritas Aequitas Fruit Heights, UT
    May 11, 2011 4:47 p.m.

    This is an example of Win-Win.

    PAC got the money from the championship game, and Utah received the money from the PAC TV contract.

    Both sides win.

    Now, Utah needs to produce on the field and they have the upside of exposure, the Rosebowl, and recruiting, and never have to travel to Laramie again.

    Nobody can kid anyone on this one. Utah was the only viable option for Larry Scott. The BCS wins and research facilities put them in the position to be here.

    Utah deserves it.

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    May 11, 2011 4:35 p.m.

    Utah especially came out smelling good on this one. Whatever the reason, it happened and it will be huge for them. If they can take advantage of the chance they have received and place in the top 3 in Football and eventually in Bball, they should be able to build a top notch program.
    Good luck to them.

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    May 11, 2011 4:15 p.m.


    I guess the old adage is true that if you repeat something often enough it will suddenly become a fact. This has been covered ad nausea but here it goes again: In the end, all that matters is that there were only two possible scenarios and they both included Utah. Utah was in, no matter which way it would have played out. If Texas said no it was going to be the PAC-12 with Utah and Colorado. If Texas said yes it was going to be the PAC-16 with Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Utah, and Colorado. Texas A&M was NEVER going to join the PAC under any circumstances, so it's irrelevant to consider an impossible scenario. Again, Texas A&M was not coming and Scott knew that. The only scenarios that were ever actually possible were PAC-16 with Utah or PAC-12 with Utah. Scott was never going to invite Kansas. That was a rumor of desperation floated by the Kansas athletic department and was never going to happen. Can we put this issue to rest now?

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    May 11, 2011 4:07 p.m.

    Utah was an afterthought in this although they have made themselves interesting with 2 big BCS wins and Final 4 appearance. I didn't realize WSU, OSU and UA were huge research institutions. I've been around and over recruiting in several multinationals (including big Pharma) and these schools never jump out for their research reputation. I think it is a smoke screen for the University Presidents' bias vs. Mormons. Research prowess is never mentioned in any other BCS conference. Give me a break!!!!

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    May 11, 2011 4:04 p.m.


    I like you and I was really enjoying your positive post for a change and then came this, "Especially once the big12 teams rejected them since they needed to try and save some face after that embarrassment." You always have to get in at least one negative zinger don't you?

    I did appreciate your candor recently on how BYU funds its outstanding athletic facilities with big time help from the LDS Church. That was a real eye opener for me.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    May 11, 2011 3:47 p.m.

    Let's be honest . . . PAC10 really wanted the University of Texas and were willing to expand to a 12 or possibly 16 team conference to get them. The singular goal with expansion was University of Texas, not Colorado or Utah.

    They offered Colorado first because they knew Colorado would accept. PAC10 hoped that with Nebraska and Colorado leaving the Big12, Texas would feel compelled to move with fear of the conference falling apart.

    When Texas rebuffed the PAC10, it didn't make sense to stick with an 11 team conference. They had to find a 12th team to at least get a conference championship game, and we all know Utah was selected.

    Let's be honest, if the PAC10 AD's and Presidents had known that expansion was only Colorado and Utah, none of them would have been in favor. Neither school is responsible for the huge TV contract. Financial this expansion hurts the other schools. USC (and maybe others) are already asking for a higher percentage of the new TV deal with the threat of exploring independence or another conference.

    This is not intended to be a knock against Utah, just a summary of the facts.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    May 11, 2011 3:22 p.m.

    It was worth it for the U and Colorado! Both schools are rollen in the dough now. If I were one of the other original pac 10 schools I would see my normal payout go down because of the expansion.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    May 11, 2011 3:06 p.m.

    Well if wilner is correct and it increased the value to each school by $800,000 then it was probably worth it. The shear size of the tv payout to all of the schools in the pac10 makes that seem like a pittance but when you consider that all any of the mwc teams get from the mountain is 1.2 mil per year $800,000 is alot of money. That is also as much as most low tier bowl payouts per team. So yes based on that you would have to say it was worth it so long as the entire reason for it was to maximize the dollars each school receives.

    Now does it help tv ratings? That is certainly up for debate. Does it increase the strength of the conference in athletics? That is debatable as well. Will the other pac10 schools eventually regret it? That remains to be seen.

    But based on dollars received for this current deal then yes it looks like it was the right thing to do. Especially once the big12 teams rejected them since they needed to try and save some face after that embarrassment.

  • dustman Nampa, ID
    May 11, 2011 3:04 p.m.

    I like that there was an expansion. I was having a hard time watching the pac-10, but since utah was added I have more incentive to do so now. I know BYU is said to have the mormon following, but Utah has so many mormon fans that they'll have fans every where they go and they will tune in when televised. Colorado has a great tradition that will get a boost from this move. I think everyone in the PAC benefits from this.

  • hagar Doylestown, PA
    May 11, 2011 2:57 p.m.

    I was pleased that the PAC 10 decided to expand, but disappointed that BYU was not included. It would have been more logical than adding Colorado whose long time tradition looked eastward.

  • gonefishn Salt Lake City, UT
    May 11, 2011 2:12 p.m.

    Wilner's math does not add up. $50 million divided by 12 is $4.16 million in added value per team per year by adding CU and U of U. Even if you back out the $14 million for the championship game you are left with an added value of $3 million per team at minimum.
    Wilner has been all over this story but it seems he is bending his own numbers to lessen the value.

  • Joe Schmoe Orem, UT
    May 11, 2011 1:58 p.m.

    It's going to be an interesting year for Utah.

  • utesovertide Salt Lake City, UT
    May 11, 2011 1:14 p.m.

    All commenters should note from the get go that Jon Wilner, although a good writer, has been looking for a reason that the Pac 10 should not have expanded from the get go. He is still yet to find one, so hopefully he buries this hatchet.

    If you use his logic he presents here, the Pac 8 should have never expanded to the Pac 10. Read Wilner's blog comments, and you'll see there are a lot of people who are fans of the Pac that are all for the expansion.