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Florida State athletic director Michael Alford has zero interest in keeping things equal in the ACC.
Clemson and FSU have both had officials make it clear the ACC needs to embrace an uneven revenue split model. The logic is the two programs drive the conference and deserve more money.
Anyone thinking the Seminoles would drop the subject are in for a reality check because Alford is pushing for it hard.
FSU wants to cash in.
“I make no bones about it that we’re the top brand in the conference. And when you look at how they measure media contracts, with households, viewership and championships, we’re driving that viewership for our conference at a high rate,” Alford said ahead of the ACC spring meetings during an interview with Warchant, according to On3.
He further added, “There are a couple schools that are really driving that media contract.”
The biggest problem for FSU and the rest of the ACC is the revenue gap between the Big Ten and SEC and then the rest of the country is huge. It will be at least $30 million starting next year, by FSU’s projections.
“I compliment Jim Phillips and his staff for everything they’re trying to do. They understand what’s coming. I’ve made it abundantly clear that there’s a $30 million gap that’s starting next season. And that can’t go on for years, because then you just can’t catch up,” Alford explained.
Florida State is fighting for more cash.
The biggest issue at play here for the ACC is keeping Florida State and Clemson both happy. The ACC’s grant of rights runs through 2036, which makes a team potentially leaving the conference incredibly tricky.
There would be massive lawsuits and court battles that could last years. However, could a conference come along and simply write a massive check to poach either program? That remains to be seen, and until it happens, it’s hard to say how it would play out.
However, FSU hasn’t exactly been shy about what it wants. The Seminoles want more money, and even might have made a subtle pitch to the SEC and Big Ten in late 2022.
The problem FSU and Clemson both face is the rest of the conference has zero incentive to play ball with an uneven revenue split. Why would any team give up money to appease two rival programs when the rights are locked in for more than decade? It would be an all-time bonehead decision. That means the two sides are in a standoff. Welcome to the chaos of college football. Now, it’s all about who blinks first. If there’s no uneven split in the cards, which seems to be likely, FSU might try exploring getting out of the ACC. That’s when the fireworks will really go off.