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BcS conferences have ten million rea$on$ to add Memphis

Back in May, it was reported that shipping giant FedEx would be giving up title sponsorship of the Orange Bowl, seemingly unwilling to cough up the $20 million it would take to remain associated with that particular BcS game.

With that money freed up, the Memphis-based company is apparently willing to do what most people would do with millions of dollars burning a hole in their pockets: buy their hometown school a place in a BcS conference.

According to CBS, FedEx CEO Fred Smith — whose son Cannon is a quarterback at the school — has made it it known to various conferences that his company would be willing to ship up to $10 million annually to their athletic coffers if they were to add Memphis to their BcS clique.  

Seriously, that’s the report.

“It could be $10 million every year for a conference to use however it sees fit,” said one of the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “When you think of the big picture, it could be the equivalent of a five-year, $50 million contract or a 10-year, $100-million contract. Fred is talking about a massive amount of money. …

“The money that used to go to the Orange Bowl is now set to go to a league that will invite Memphis. Fred has made it clear he’ll put that money back into the budget for the right league. He’s driving this thing.”

If the Big East were to see one or more of its current members picked off by the Big Ten, they could certainly be in the market for a school that has a booster willing to cough up eight figures annually for a decade or more.  Another conference not mentioned in the article but would most certainly be in play would be the ACC, a league that could be looking for a member or two or three if the SEC catches the expansion bug.

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6 Responses to “BcS conferences have ten million rea$on$ to add Memphis”
  1. Toad says: Jun 13, 2010 1:53 PM

    I wonder how the stockholders not living in Tenn will feel about the boss squandering their money. After all, the company is owned by the stockholders.

  2. TB3 says: Jun 13, 2010 2:42 PM

    This is about as ridiculous as Chriss Simms starting over Major Applewhite in Austin only because of who his daddy is.

  3. burntorangehorn says: Jun 14, 2010 11:13 AM

    Memphis isn’t exactly a good academic program, but seems like a pretty good addition to the Big East or even the SEC. Not really a football power, but would be better if able to sell BCS-conference affiliation, and definitely a credible sports program. And having the low academic standards makes them able to compete at the same level as USF, for example. The Big East seems like a natural fit, at least until the SEC absorbs half the conference.

  4. Pastabelly says: Jun 14, 2010 1:30 PM

    The reason the ACC is not mentioned is that Memphis doesn’t meet academic standards in the ACC. It’s a non-starter.

  5. Football says: Jun 14, 2010 2:08 PM

    This is seriously f’ed up if true. Fred Smith does not own FedEx, its shareholder do.

  6. Approval given for Big East to expand to ten | CollegeFootballTalk says: Nov 2, 2010 4:03 PM

    […] largest donor is also chairman of FedEx and may be willing to ship (see what I did there?) some of that company’s money to the conference in the form of […]

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