One more round of Pac-12 purging by the Big Ten could put the conference on life support, and the league’s recent pursuit of an Amazon TV deal could get the ball rolling.
Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren is reportedly seeking an offer from the tech giant – or potentially another partner – for additional Big Ten football media rights revenue.
One source told CBS Sports this week that an offer deemed substantial enough would likely convince Big Ten presidents that California, Oregon, Stanford and Washington would be valuable additions to the league.
That figure, according to reports, is believed to be less than $100 million annually.
Should that happen, it could open the door for the Big 12 to swoop in and take Arizona and Arizona State, Colorado and/or Utah, leaving the Pac-12 standing at the alter with just a few teams – namely Oregon State and Washington State.
Could the Big 12 take remaining Pac-12 teams?
A Big 12 source all but confirmed to CBS that scenario playing out, saying they believed those four schools would want to jump to their league should the Big Ten’s pursuit of a TV deal – and, therefore, more expansion – pan out.
The conference signed a historic TV deal earlier this year worth more than $8 billion over seven years beginning in 2023. According to reports, Amazon reportedly bid more for the conference’s 3:30 p.m. and primetime timeslots, but those went to CBS and NBC.
It remains to be seen if the two can come to an agreement this time around, especially considering some of the Big Ten’s presumed concerns with Amazon – exposure and distribution – still exist.
Perhaps the streaming giant’s recent success with the opening two weeks of Thursday Night Football will get it a seat back at the table?
In any event, it’s clear that the Big Ten is out for blood, and Warren doesn’t seem anywhere close to slowing down.
Someone check the Pac-12’s pulse, stat!