All That and a Bag of Mail

Sep 5, 2015; Hattiesburg, MS, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs head coach Dan Mullen on the sidelines in the second half of their game against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles at M.M. Roberts Stadium. Mississippi State won, 34-16. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports Chuck Cook

It’s Friday and we’ve had quite a week here at Outkick. We set an all-time high for Outkick viewership with Wednesday’s show that clocked over 300,000 unique viewers and listeners and featured a great interview with Curt Schilling, we defended Blake Lively and her ass from charges of racism, we murdered PC Bromani and his ilk, and you guys have been incredible on social media and as part of Seal Team Clay, the point of the spear in all our interactions. 

So the Friday mailbag is our victory lap this weekend. 

And our beaver pelt traders of the week are you guys. 

Well done. Here we go with the mailbag:

Ryan writes:

“Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?

With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?

Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?

What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?

It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.

Am I wrong?”

No, you’re totally right. If the college conferences with television networks were run as businesses there would be no real point in having multiple teams in the same states. So if you were just running the individual conferences to maximize revenue the SEC would jettison Mississippi State for sure. But you’d probably also have to kick out Vanderbilt and, wait for it, Auburn. You could replace Mississippi State, Auburn, and Vanderbillt with schools in North Carolina, Virginia and Oklahoma, which would bring in a hundred million a year or more in additional conference revenue.

A school like Auburn would be much in demand and would probably end up in the ACC or the Big 12, which would both compete desperately to add them. The Big Ten would grab Vanderbilt in a heartbeat and Mississippi State, honestly, might fall all the way down to Conference USA. The ACC wouldn’t take State and I’m not sure the Big 12 would either. The state of Mississippi just doesn’t add much from a TV perspective and neither of these conferences have networks yet.

The Big Ten doesn’t need two teams in a state either so they would kick out Purdue, Michigan State, and Northwestern. (Indiana, Michigan, and Illinois are all better brands and TV draws than the three schools we’d kick out.) Then the Big 10 would probably add Vanderbilt, a North Carolina school and a Virginia school since the ACC doesn’t gain much value from two Virginia schools and FOUR North Carolina schools. (Kansas would also be in serious play here, but I think the Big 10 desperately wants entre into Southern markets.)

The ACC would probably add Northwestern, Michigan State and Purdue to make up for the teams it lost.

The important thing to keep in mind is this — markets only really matter if you have a network. The SEC, for instance, gets $1.40 a month per subscriber in the 11 states in which it has a team, just .25 a month in the 39 states where it doesn’t have a team. So new states and new markets mean big dollars if you can ensure your network is carried by all the cable and satellite operators in a state. But if you can’t guarantee that then you’re not creating much additional value which is why I don’t think it makes any sense at all for the Big 12 to expand unless a network is planned.

That’s also why the Big 12 Network is such a tough draw with the ten teams that currently constitute the conference — you have four schools in Texas, two in Kansas, two in Oklahoma, and one each in Iowa and West Virginia. Outside of Texas, where you have four teams, that’s an awful base for cable and satellite customers. Put it this way, in the event the Big 12 Network ever becomes a reality the SEC will make just as much money off having one school in Texas as the Big 12 would make off having four.  

Now, you can’t do this for political reasons, but this idea that has taken root that somehow there’s a big gap in the quality of the programs between the schools in the big five conferences and the schools that aren’t in the big five conferences is just wrong.

Much of it is just luck and/or historical accident.

Mitchell writes:

“So, we all love college football and love Game of Thrones, this much is fact. Any opportunity to talk about either is great, an opportunity to discuss both simultaneously should not be passed up. So my wife and I (as big fans of OKTC) got on the subject of this and thought Clay Travis was the only individual who could accurately decide the true answers: If Westeros were the college football landscape, where would each conference reside?

We have gone back and forth on this and feel confident about 3 conferences – The SEC, B10, and Pac 12. While not SEC fans, we have to admit the SEC is probably King’s Landing. The weather always seems to be nice, and despite the constant turmoil between residents the power does reside there.

The B10 seems pretty obvious – it has to be Winterfell. It’s always cold, people don’t want to travel there, but it still holds a level of power that doesn’t quite seem commensurate to its recent prowess, save for one influential family. I will say that we considered North of the Wall for the B10, but that just sounds like MAC country.

The third one is one that my wife is not completely on board with, but I think the Pac 12 would be Dorne. The weather looks to be spectacular, it’s sexy, it’s trendy, and it genuinely looks like a place that would attract a lot of people. But in the end, what the hell has Dorne done? So they killed a princess – it’s not like you see them sitting on the iron throne. They’re a darkhorse, but you only get labeled a darkhorse because you’ve never actually won anything.

Anyway, it seems like we know enough about Westeros to place each DI conference somewhere, but could certainly use some guidance and explanations from the leading voice on both subjects.”

I think yours are nearly perfect. I love the SEC as King’s Landing and Winterfell as the Big Ten. The MAC as north of the wall is outstanding. I can see the Pac 12 as Dorne too. The only possible addition I’d make is the Pac 12 could also be Daenerys’s lands.  

The Big 12 is the Eyrie. It’s kind of perfect, right? Baelish is running the kingdom, but there’s a prop ruler ostensibly in charge, an enfeebled prince who is manipulated by powerful political forces. Dan Beebe definitely got tossed through the moon door.  

The ACC is the Stormlands, a once powerful land that has its would-be rulers killed by vagina monsters. Now without a ruler or an army — unless Gendry in a rowboat counts — the ACC is the perpetual would be power always in the shadow of the land that actually rules, the SEC.   

The Iron Islands is the American Athletic Conference, remote, cold, generally uninteresting, so much so that you kind of forget it exists. Also, it used to be much more powerful than at any point in the past.  

Zachary writes:

“Long time reader, first time writer. As I sit in Cleveland hearing non-stop about the upcoming RNC convention and all the madness that will ensue, a crazy hypothetical floated through my head – at some point prior to the election, what would be the reaction, and response, if Donald Trump were assassinated?”

We haven’t had a presidential assassination in over 50 years. (We had the Ronald Reagan attempt in the early 1980’s, but other than that there hasn’t even been a shot fired at a president in over thirty years.) Isn’t that kind of crazy? In a time when mass gun violence has become infinitely more common in our country and political polarization has increased dramatically, the president has been safer than ever.

Hell, aren’t you guys kind of shocked that no crazy white racist has gotten a shot off at Obama in eight years? And no insane conservative or insane liberal or insane terrorist tried to take out Bill Clinton or George W. Bush? I mean, it’s really pretty amazing. Is this because the secret service has become so much better at protecting the president or is it just luck?

I mean, compare this era to the 1960’s. You had JFK and RFK and MLK all go down in five years. Then George Wallace, the best comparison to Trump, also got shot in 1972. Hell, even Larry Flynt and John Lennon got shot in 1978 and 1980. Then what?

Nothing, really. (Unless you count Tupac and Biggie, who are probably the two most famous people to be shot to death since John Lennon). 

So, back to your question, if Trump were killed by an assassin it would be a watershed moment for the country. And I think who shot him would really be a huge deal. Because the politics could be wild depending on who the assassin was. Can you imagine of an illegal immigrant shot Trump? Or a black lives matter activist? Or a terrorist? Each of these would be treated differently. If a terrorist did it, I think the country would rally and come together. But if it was an illegal immigrant — oh the irony — or a black lives matter activist, this place would be a total mess. It would kill the black lives matter movement in one fell swoop. (Although this movement is dying the same way the Occupy Wall Street movements did.) If it were an illegal immigrant, there would be a massive move to curtail illegal immigration.

The Republicans would probably go on to win the election because they’d get all the sympathy vote and the Republicans would be able to argue, wtihout arguing, how can you let an assassin pick the president? How can Hillary even campaign then either? (Honest question, what happens if a presidential contender is assassinated after the convention but before the election? Is there time to get a new name on the ballot? How is a nominee selected? Do you just go straight to the VP nominee and the VP picks a new VP? I have no idea.)

And can you even imagine what social media would be like in an event of this magnitude? Think about the JFK assassination playing out in the modern era. Oswald gets shot on live TV? Total insanity.

Also, the moment a famous person dies, everyone loves you. So Trump would become a saint.  

Alex writes:

“Thanks for leading the good fight against the PC bros. As our brave leader on this digital battleground, I wanted to bring something to light to you that has been irking me for quite a while.

Quick background on myself in order to prove my expertise/that I’m not a moron in this question: I’m the son of Polish immigrants who came over from Poland to Texas in the 80s in order to realize the American dream (they succeeded), and I went to an SEC school in Texas. This question comes as a result of seeing a tweet directed at you from a PC bro comparing Lively/Reynolds wedding on an old plantation to having a wedding at Auschwitz. My question to you is why does every single PC bro in this country have to equate Trump or alleged transgressions of people they don’t agree with to Hitler and the Nazis? What is their fucking obsession with comparing those who hurt their feelings with some of the most horrifying human atrocities the world has ever seen?

Hitler tried to exterminate an entire group of people. He systematically killed millions of innocent Jews, Poles, Gays, Gypsies. I’ve been to Auschwitz, and this isn’t some plantation in SE United States. Trump is not Hitler. Bush is not Hitler. No one is Hitler. He is the face of pure evil. I immediately assume anyone making such a comparison is incredibly ignorant, regardless of whatever point they are trying to make. Yet I see it everywhere. Same goes with Stalin, Pol Pot, etc. etc.” 

I subscribe to a simple rule, the first person to compare anything in modern American life to Hitler or the Holocaust, loses the argument. 

Period. 

I’d suggest you join me in that. 

David R. writes:

“Hey, Clay. I have been married to the same beautiful woman for 18 years.  Like many of your married readers, our sex life has become a little stale.  Things aren’t terrible by any means, but I don’t exactly feel qualified to give young couples advice for a successful relationship.  Yet I have been asked to do exactly that, and that’s where I need your help.  

To become married in our church (one of the biggest in town), the bride and groom must first attend a premarital seminar there.  The closing segment is a panel discussion by “veteran couples” who are asked to “briefly share your marriage joys and concerns and advice for a happy marriage.”  Though we tried to get out of it, my wife and I will be one of those veteran couples.

You have been thrown a lot of relationship questions over the years, and have handled them like a boss.  A gay Muslim boss, but a boss nonetheless.  So I make this pledge to you, Clay Travis.  Give me a few bullet points of advice that you would pass along to soon-to-be newlyweds, and I will read them verbatim and credit you and your site.  If you don’t, I hope Outkick fires you.”

Six years ago a girl getting married emailed me asking if I’d show up at her wedding to give a toast because her fiance was such a big fan of mine. This was before we even started Outkick. I couldn’t do it. So I wrote this toast for her. These were my ten pieces of advice. You can use them as you see fit. 

1. Remember when your wife used to regularly wear nice lingerie to entice you?

Those days are over. Or will be soon.

Come to grips with that now. After three years of marriage, I turned to my wife and asked her, “How come you don’t wear lingerie anymore?”

And she said, “Because you’re just going to take it off.”

Welcome to marriage. 

2. Your television habits are about to change, Rob. 

Early on in our marriage it occurred to me during the fourteenth version of The Real Housewives of… that the most popular women’s television shows all feature Crazy Ass Women. That is, the entirety of women’s television program popularity is predicated upon women watching truly crazy women to help convince them that they are, in fact, not crazy. 

Or at least not as crazy as some other women. Because secretly every woman is convinced that she is a little bit crazy. 

If you watch these shows with her and occasionally remark, “Boy, I’m glad you’re not as crazy as (insert woman who stars in crazy ass woman television show),” you will endear yourself to your wife more than anything else you could possibly do.   

3. “We interrupt this marriage to bring you football season.”

This is on a brown placard that hangs on the wall beside our flat screen television. My mother-in-law got it for us as a joke at our wedding. 

I did not think it was funny. 

Please don’t schedule anything important in the fall on the weekends.

4. Men are not complicated. 

Women like to believe that we’re complicated because to believe otherwise is too simplistic. You’ve spent all this time trying to figure out what motivates us and it’s really just about trying to get us to sleep with you? Yes. Now that you’re married, you get let in on the truth, everything that any guy does is about trying to have sex. Everything. Don’t hold this against your husband’s single friends. Once a guy is married, a woman becomes privy to the lies that we tell. 

For instance, we have minimal interest in going to see the musical Man of La Mancha on a Sunday matinee. 

Once you realize this fact, every time you see a man doing something ridiculous: walking a poodle in a snowstorm, shopping for feminine hygiene products, getting a couples wax, it’s really hard not to laugh everywhere you go. You’ll see us and realize how ridiculous we really are.

It’s all about trying to get you to sleep with us.   

You’re welcome, yes, we are this pathetic.  

5. Your wife is going to constantly try and resolve all of your couple “issues.”

You will find this exercise to be pointless, counterproductive, and downright unnecessary. That’s because you married your wife liking her just the way she is. 

Unfortunately for you, and for men everywhere, your wife married you liking you very much, but convinced that with a little handiwork you could be oh so much better. 

So you are, like an unfinished home that will never been finished, a perpetual work in progress. You can fight this or you can accept this. (I find that alcohol helps). Whatever you do, and I cannot stress this enough, do not point out that if you did exactly what she said, she would find something new that you needed to change. 

Trust me. 

You will not win this debate. 

6. He will always be there; she will always be there. 

This is a big point, you’re together now. Forever. At any time of the day. That’s scary. But don’t be the kind of couple who immediately abandons your prior life. Keep your friends, maintain your individuality. Feel free to do different things. It’s why you liked each other to begin with. The moment you feel compelled to spend every moment together is the moment you lose touch with the people that you each fell in love with. 

I can’t stress this enough. Everyone hates the married couple that becomes an island. And eventually they hate themselves too. 

7. She will throw away some of your clothes. 

I had 4,000 t-shirts when I got married. 

Now I have four. 

My wife claims that she has nothing to do with this. 

You be the judge. 

8. The windows in your new home are going to need treatments. 

Even though you had no idea your windows were sick. Or that they needed to be treated for anything. 

You may not even recall signing hospital admit papers for your windows, but those blinds that your mom bought at Wal-Mart in 1984 aren’t cutting it anymore. And she’s known they were gone since the first time she came over to your place. 

Nope, they’re done for. Women today demand that their windows be treated. And that shit is expensive. 

Go ahead and cut a check now.  

9. Talk to each other about everything, significant or otherwise.

Seriously, speaking as a lawyer, do you know how many other people you can tell everything to and they can never be compelled to testify against you in a court of law for any reason?

No one. 

That’s how much the law trusts the bond you just entered into. 

So when you commit the crime of the century, no one knows, and you absolutely, positively have to brag to someone? You’ll be glad you’re married.  

10. You will see her and be amazed that she’s yours. 

Men never stop looking at women. Ever. In fact, some of the dirty old men at this wedding do it even more than the young guys. (You know who you are, dirty old men, I just caught you looking at one of the bridesmaid’s cleavage and I’m not even there. Again, you aren’t smooth. Not even after forty years of sneaking glances, you aren’t.)

But I can honestly say this, at least every other month or so when my wife and I are out somewhere chasing around our kids in a public place, I’ll lose her for a little while, and then she’ll appear again, coming around a corner in a book store, stepping out from behind a clothes rack, and for just a moment, I’ll think, “Wow, she’s hot.”

And then I’ll realize she’s mine. 

And I remember what I thought the first time I saw her all over again. 

So will you. 

If you follow all this advice then, congrats, you have a 50% chance of not getting divorced. 

Hope y’all have great weekends. 

Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?
Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?
Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?
Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?
Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?
Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?
Whenever I read about conference expansion, there is an obvious solution I am seeing that nobody is considering. Why don’t conferences drop teams?
 
With Ole Miss in the fold, does the SEC really need Mississippi State?
Does the Pac-12 need Oregon St and Washington St to increase TV revenue?
What if the Big 12 dropped Iowa St and Kansas St?
 
It seems an obvious solution to me. The SEC Network would still be on in every house in Mississippi, regardless of if Mississippi State is in the conference. Now the money is divided 13 ways. It seems the obvious way for conferences to make money.
 
Am I wrong?

Written by Clay Travis

OutKick founder, host and author. He's presently banned from appearing on both CNN and ESPN because he’s too honest for both.