Will the age of autonomy hurt a program like Cincinnati? Head coach Tommy Tuberville is not ready to suggest one way or the other how last week’s vote to allow autonomy to the power conferences will impact the American Athletic Conference, and specifically Cincinnati.
“It will if (the Power 5) start doing things we can’t do,” Tuberville said, per Cincinnati Enquirer. If it means keeping up with programs from the ACC, Big Ten, SEC and so on, Cincinnati is a program that may have to adjust the budget.”We’d have to cut a lot of things. Some travel. Equipment and recruiting budgets.”
Last week the 65 schools from the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC (and Notre Dame) voted in favor of a new governing structure allowing for autonomy. The commissioners from the power conferences applauded the results of the voting while the commissioners from the non-power conferences had mixed reactions. AAC commissioner Mike Aresco was a bit more positive about the new structure, suggesting the conference is committed to playing on the same level as the power conferences. Full cost-of-attendance scholarships has been one of the top items on the to-do list for the new powers rom autonomy and the AAC commissioner has suggested his conference is prepared to make that possible as well. But for now it is all a matter of waiting to see how the power conferences set-up their new rules and guidelines and allowances before the others can begin to respond and react.
“You really don’t know how all this stuff is going to shake out,” Tuberville said. “We need to find a bottom line. We don’t need a pro sport, on a college level.”