Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Marinatto on the offensive?

With the winds of conference realignment beginning to blow all through the college football world once again, it appears that Big East commissioner John Marinatto is prepared to do what Conference USA boss Britton Banowsky and Mountain West commish Craig Thompson didn't do in recent times like this: SOMETHING.

Marinatto has reached out to Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe, ACC top dog John Swofford and NCAA president Mark Emmert. He wants to set up face-to-face meetings with them, as was reported by Brett McMurphy of CBS Sports.

What is the purpose of these meetings and what will be on the agenda? I think we'd all love to know the answers to those questions, but just look at the current conference landscape. Three conferences (SEC, Big "Ten" and Pac 12) currently have far more cache in terms of revenue streams and stability than the three other BCS leagues. If the SEC does ever end up inviting aggy (and a 14th team) to join their conference, you could see the college football food chain rear it's ugly head, putting one (or more) of the conferences on Marinatto's invite list and perhaps dozens of schools in jeopardy of being left high & dry.

The pessimistic way to look at this would be that Marinatto, whose league has generally been seen as the weakest of the BCS conferences, is trying to play nice with the bullies before they have their way with him. After all, it is usually the most desperate that make the most noise during conference realignment drama.

Then again, maybe he knows something the rest of us don't. With Texas and Oklahoma playing their cards close to their vest in the event of an aggy exit, the potential leverage he has in negotiating the Big East's new TV contract and the uncertainy over how the NCAA will deal with one of the ACC's flagship football programs...maybe Marinatto is in a position to call a few shots?


VikingFrog said...

If and when the super conference do come I think the names need to go.

Everyone would probably be able to drop a little of their pride by not having to say we joined your conference because we had to or you joined ours, and all that bullshit.

We are basically throwing a lot of historic ties out the window so I say they start a fresh new melting pot and call it what it is.


ctbeecherl said...

I think Marinetto is wise enough to look at all his options before the dust settles so he has the best leverage for the TV networks to make bids on Big East/Super Conference #1 or whatever we want to call it.

As long as baylor is stuck in the sun belt... this guy is happy.