Attrition is as hot and heavy as the weather in some parts of the country, with Indiana the latest one to find itself on the receiving end of roster deductions this week.
The Hoosiers announced in a press release that safety Will Dawkins and offensive lineman Tim Gardner have decided to leave Kevin Wilson‘s program. Both players would’ve been redshirt sophomores in 2016, and could’ve been significant contributors this coming season.
“We thank Will and Tim for their contributions,” the head coach said in a statement. “They are leaving IU in good academic standing and we wish them the very best moving forward.”
Dawkins played in nine games last season, starting the final three contests of the year. Gardner, originally an Ohio State signee, played in 11 games in 2015.
The other Big Ten sports broadcast rights shoe is reportedly ready to drop, and it is full of cash for the oldest major conference.
Sports Business Daily reported Monday morning ESPN has agreed to pay $190 million per year for six years to continue broadcasting Big Ten football and basketball games.
Of course that figure gets more impressive when we recall it is for only roughly half of the conference’s games. The other half already went to Fox Sports for a reported $240 million per year, and CBS is expected to retain some basketball games for $10 million per year.
Then of course there are still the rights owned by the Big Ten Network.
How does it all add up?
SBJ offers some perspective:
The $2.64 billion deals with Fox, ESPN and CBS average $440 million per year and nearly triple the amount ESPN and CBS had been paying for the same programming. ESPN signed a 10-year deal worth $100 million annually in 2006 — a payout that increased to $150 million this year due to the addition of Nebraska, Maryland and Rutgers to the conference. CBS paid an average of around $6 million for its current basketball-only deal.
Also of note: Fox managed to secure the first choice of which weeks it will get first choice of games, meaning the network could pluck away the storied Ohio State-Michigan game that traditionally takes place in late November as the season finale.
That game has been fixture on ESPN/ABC for decades.
Previously, ESPN generally had first pick of games with the Big Ten Network taking what was left.
Indiana’s Memorial Stadium — home to what has to be the highest press box in major college football — is getting a face lift.
IU’s Board of Trustees on Friday approved a $53 million project to enclose the south end of Memorial Stadium, which will include treatment and academic facilities, with space reserved for a new locker room, among other things. The package also includes new video screens in both end zones.
“Not only as the athletic director, but really as an alumnus and a fan, I’m excited that we are catching up to where we need to be on facilities,” Hooisers athletics director Fred Glass told the Indianapolis Star. “I think for a variety of reasons, we had fallen behind. Now we’re closing that gap.”
(Photo credit: IU athletics)
A week after ESPN announced its Big Ten primetime slate, the Big Ten Network rolled out 10 games slated for evening kickoffs this upcoming season (which is less than four months away now!).
The BTN games are below, all of which are played on Saturdays. Kickoffs are in Eastern Time.
Sept. 3: Fresno State at Nebraska (8 p.m.)
Sept. 10: Iowa State at Iowa (7:30 p.m.)
Sept. 10: North Carolina at Illinois (7:30 p.m.)
Sept. 17: Duke at Northwestern (8 p.m.)
Sept. 24: Nebraska at Northwestern (7:30 p.m.)
Oct. 1: Michigan State at Indiana (8 p.m.)
Oct. 22: Michigan State at Maryland (7:30 p.m.)
Nov. 5: Iowa at Penn State (7:30 p.m.)
Nov. 12: Minnesota at Nebraska (7:30 p.m.)
Nov. 19: Penn State at Rutgers (8 p.m.)
BTN will also televise games Thursday, Sept. 1 (Oregon State at Minnesota) and Friday, Sept. 2 (Furman at Michigan State).
Forget about going shirtless at a satellite camp or a sleepover or climbing up a tree or any of the like; this is what you call a recruiting pitch.
During the course of the three-day NFL draft, a dozen former Ohio State Buckeyes were drafted. While OSU failed to break its own record for most picks in a single draft, the 12 selections in the first four rounds were the most ever.
And, not surprisingly, those players are going to get paid.
According to PennLive.com‘s David Jones, those players will sign contracts that could be worth a total of $120 million. Tim May of the Columbus Dispatch has the number pegged slightly lower at $111,462,707. Either way, that’s a lot of cash — and a lot dollar signs for Urban Meyer to flout in front of potential recruits.
Of course, not all of that money is guaranteed, although the guaranteed dollars involved aren’t too shabby either. From the Dispatch:
Just the signing bonuses alone, which range from Bosa’s projected $17,017,226 to Jones’ $383,393, have an expected total of $60,526,660. Unless a player does something to cause his contract to be voided, signing bonuses are theirs to keep.
Regardless of how you spin it, former Buckeyes did quite well financially the last couple of days. And, as Jones alludes to when it comes to James Franklin and Penn State specifically and the Big Ten in general, Meyer and the Buckeyes are in an entirely different zip code than the rest of the conference — a fact that will no doubt come up on the vast expanses of the recruiting trail.
The good news for Franklin and Penn State: They had three of those 11. The bad news for them and everyone else in the league: Urban Meyer is probably preparing a recruiting flyer right now with a 9-figure dollar amount printed in big bold numbers.