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Big 12 taps the brakes on Longhorn Network’s high school football coverage

Foot on the Break

Well, that didn’t take long.

A little more than 24 hours after an uproar over The Longhorn Network’s plans to cover high school football games — or, more specifically, the comments of an ESPN executive during an on-air radio interview in June — went national, all of the parties involved have decided to take a step back and regroup.

Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe told Dallas Morning News‘ beat writer Chuck Carlton that, in light of ESPN VP of Programming Dave Brown‘s comments as well as concerns on the part of some members of the conference — Texas A&M and Oklahoma are rumored to again be eyeing the SEC over the situation — a temporary compromise has been reached: for the time being, plans for TLN to televise upwards of 18 high school football games on Thursdays and Saturdays this year have been put on hold while the conference and the NCAA sorts out the situation.

Additionally, it was announced earlier this month that TLN would televise one conference football game this year in addition to one non-conference game; that plan has been delayed as well as Beebe scrambles to allay the fears of some/most/all-but-Texas members of his conference.

“It’s not going to happen until and unless the conference can make it happen with benefit to all and detriment to none,” Beebe told Carlton.

For his part, UT athletic director DeLoss Dodds stated that his school is “for the conference”; “want[s] to play by the rules… everything to be in the open with integrity”; and “televising high school games… would not be a way we want a recruiting advantage.”

As asked by Carlton, the question now becomes whether this temporary move alleviates A&M’s, and to some extent based on the rumors, OU’s concerns.  Only A&M would know the answer for certain, but common sense would seem to dictate that, if the temporary decision to hold off on televising high school football games becomes a permanent one, TAMU’s fears may be allayed to one degree or another?  If not?

Say hello to months upon months upon months of A&M/OU-to-SEC speculation/rumor/innuendo being churned out by media outlets far and wide.

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7 Responses to “Big 12 taps the brakes on Longhorn Network’s high school football coverage”
  1. 78lion says: Jul 20, 2011 11:11 PM

    A&M might claim their concern is TLN. Their concern getting the funding for expansion of Kyle Field from a wealthy alumni living in Florida. With it and SEC membership brings sold out (larger) stadiums and luxury boxes for LSU, Bama and other SEC teams coming to Kyle. Same won’t happen for Baylor, Tech, KSU, Iowa State, etc.

  2. lucky5934 says: Jul 21, 2011 7:15 AM

    Let’s see… keep the Longhorns happy or watch major programs walk away into other conferences… I am sure that was a tough call for the Big 12.

  3. florida727 says: Jul 21, 2011 7:38 AM

    “a temporary compromise has been reached: for the time being, plans for TLN to televise upwards of 18 high school football games on Thursdays and Saturdays this year have been put on hold”


    KEY PHRASE: “for the time being”

    What? You don’t think the #1 priority of The Longhorn Network would be the Longhorns? Eventually A&M and Zero-U have to stop crying wolf and actually follow through on their threat, otherwise the threat stops being one.

  4. centexhorn says: Jul 21, 2011 9:05 AM

    It’s abbreviated “LHN”, not “TLN”.

  5. bradentonbuc says: Jul 21, 2011 10:18 AM

    Let ESPN show the games if they want, but showing on a college network should be an NCAA matter and not allowed.

  6. dafool99 says: Jul 21, 2011 10:34 AM

    Here is the quick fix. Put these games on ESPN, ESPN2, or ESPNU like you have done the last couple of years.

    Im tired of hearing about unfair recruiting and all this other garbage.

    What do you think is a more of an advantage for UT? Having these games on a the LHN where a couple hundred people (who have to pay for this channel) might catch the game? Or on one of the WORLD WIDE LEADER’s channels where the whole country has access to with your basic cable package?

    Im an Orangeblood!

    ESPN has paid for the inside package to UT, and they are gonna “pimp it” on the LHN or their own channels no matter what! The announcers will be pimping UT throughout the games, and if i was an outside school i would rather it happen on a secluded network where only diehards will catch it!

  7. indycolt45 says: Jul 21, 2011 6:12 PM

    I don’t get what A&M and OU think would be accomplished if they left the conference. The recruiting would still be the exact same. Seems like cutting off your nose to spite your face.

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