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Power Five commishes react to autonomy approval

Mike Slive AP

As you have no doubt heard by now, there was, barring an unexpected override vote, a seismic shift in college athletics made official this afternoon.

This afternoon, the Division I Board of Directors overwhelmingly voted to approve autonomy for the Power Five conferences — the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC.  The move wasn’t unexpected, but it was monumental nonetheless.

Below are the reactions from three of the Power Five conference commissioners on the historic day, the exception being the Big Ten’s Jim Delany. Suffice to say, the four who have addressed the issue are ecstatic over the development:

“The approval of the steering committee’s report on restructuring by the NCAA Board of Directors is a positive and necessary step in the continued efforts to ensure that we have a more effective and nimble NCAA moving forward. These changes will allow us to continue to prioritize how to better address the needs of our institutions, athletic programs and, most importantly, our student-athletes. I applaud Nathan Hatch, Wake Forest President and Chair of the NCAA’s Board of Directors and Steering Committee, for his effective efforts throughout this significant time of change. As we implement the new structure, we must continue to recognize how special the collegiate model is to the educational system within our country and culture.”

“We are delighted that after years of debate, a consensus has emerged that the time has come for a modern approach to governance that recognizes the need to give more flexibility to those conferences prepared to do more for student-athletes and, at the same time, preserves the collegiate model which works so well for the vast majority of Pac-12 student-athletes,” said Commissioner Scott. “This is a great day for the 7,000 current student-athletes in the Pac-12 and for generations of future student-athletes who will benefit from the educational opportunities and life lessons made possible by college athletics.”

“This is an opportunity for historic change in college athletics,” said SEC commissioner Mike Slive. “Now we can go to work to begin to better address the needs of our student-athletes.”

“I am pleased that the governance restructuring process has enabled the Big 12 and the four other high visibility conferences to utilize greater autonomy in formulating the rules by which we will operate,” said commissioner Bob Bowlsby.  “I believe the empowerment provided by the NCAA Board will afford us the best opportunity to enhance student-athlete benefits and to embark on a new 21st century covenant with the participants in our programs.”

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11 Responses to “Power Five commishes react to autonomy approval”
  1. stonegossardstyle says: Aug 7, 2014 2:48 PM

    Can we get Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech in the Big Ten now?

  2. brutusbuckeye2011 says: Aug 7, 2014 2:52 PM

    I totally agree with Mike Slive except for two words. He should have said “pocket-books” instead of “student-athletes.”

  3. brutusbuckeye2011 says: Aug 7, 2014 2:54 PM

    @ stonegossardstyle:
    I for one would like to have them.

  4. floridacock says: Aug 7, 2014 3:09 PM

    Not saying it was not inevitable, but the inmates just took over the asylum. The cost of college football has just risen and no doubt about it, it will be you and I who pay.

  5. 1friendofthepeople says: Aug 7, 2014 4:09 PM

    Won’t players be more inclined to join non-top five conferences? Won’t this affect their recruiting?

    I’m not sure I’m understanding this correctly…

  6. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 7, 2014 4:24 PM

    Advent of the super conferences.

    Think Wayan Brothers

    Mo’Money!, Mo’Money!, Mo’Money!

    Enjoy college sports today, these are the good old days.


  7. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 7, 2014 4:48 PM

    Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech have no reason to join the B1G. Why would they? They are part of the ACC, they are in a destination conference.

    Notice the commissioners who responded to the news.

    The ACC

    The PAC -12

    The SEC

    They are ascending conferences in a national scope. True, the ACC doesn’t have their network…..yet, but when the ACC network launches, they have the geographical appeal to be the dominant super conference simply because of Notre Dame and ACC

    Makes you wonder if B1G commissioner Delany will still think of downgrading to a Division III program status conference wise. Probably not. He wants Mo’ Money.

    The conference you’re hearing crickets from is the Big 12. Texas is sitting in the drivers seat with the LHN and the remaining schools and their athletic directors have to be nervous when they see autonomy coming like a NASCAR race and they’re sitting in the pits with no conference network.

    It’s the battle of the have’s and have not’s.

    We haven’t even talked the pending B1G negotiation on a new contract with Fox, Comcast, A&TT and the alphabet networks on the B1G Ten network. You think the money is obscene now, wait until the numbers come out on a tentative contract terms, and don’t think the other commissioners will quietly take notes.

    Enjoy college sports now, these are the good old days.


  8. pawloosa says: Aug 7, 2014 6:31 PM

    This only affects football.. So the PAC 12 guy referencing 7000 student athletes is a bit off mark….
    HOWEVER… I’m sure the other collegiate sports will tie up the conferences in very public and discriminating legal battles or boycott for equal treatment… It’s only a matter of time….
    No doubt about it… The tooth paste is out and it won’t go back in now…
    Terrible ruling

  9. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 7, 2014 6:55 PM


    With all due respect.

    This is about power and money. The 24/7/365 world of sports networks demand content to fill time slots.

    The advent of the super conferences is about network content. The super conferences will be about being the farm systems for the major leagues and the Olympics.

    Equal treatment? Never a thought.

    Equal access, yes.

    The mid majors are even now looking to form their own network opportunities as is the basketball only conferences. Again, network content.

    College Football will expand beyond the 4 team playoff scenario and evolve into a “March Madness” playoff stretching from December through January, culminating in a National
    Championship game the night before the Super Bowl. Why? Obscene amounts of revenue for the NCAA and member institutions. February will be dedicated to national signing day in college football and start the transition to March Madness.

    As Gordon Gekko said,”Greed is good!”

    Enjoy college sports now, these are the good old days.


  10. Deb says: Aug 7, 2014 11:21 PM

    A few months ago, most of us were salivating at the idea of a March Madness playoff open to multiple teams. Virtually everyone complains about FBS teams from the five majors playing out-of-conference “cupcakes” in order to improve their chances in the season-end standings.

    But now the prospect of a multi-team playoff and splitting up the FBS to ensure teams play real competitors is being discussed as though it were the end of the college football universe. Please.

    Times have changed. Football is now the most popular sport in the land. A lot of people watch it, making it a valuable commodity to advertisers/networks/cable companies/satellite providers. Most of that revenue is generated by the Big Five conferences. If you were generating billions of dollars, you’d want control over those revenues. If you were the player on the field working full-time as an athlete and taking most of the risks, you’d get frustrated at not having enough money to buy dinner at a decent restaurant.

    Yes, things will be different. But some of them should be. College football should long ago have had a March Madness-type playoff. The major teams should not be playing Podunk U. The players should be receiving merchandising rights.

    Will there be negatives? Yes. Change always brings some positives and some negatives. But it’s the way of the world whether we like it or not.

  11. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 8, 2014 6:14 AM

    It should be referred to as the Power 4 conferences when referring to football. The Little 14 is irrelevant. They are 10-21 in bowl games the last 4 bowl seasons.

    Expect a statement from Jim Delaney the crook today saying I echo Mike Slive’s comments made yday. This crook is slow just like the teams in his horrible football conference.

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