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The Pac-12 Conference took center stage this week as it held its media day.
And unsurprisingly, much of the conversation revolved around conference realignment, expansion and media rights.
Commissioner George Kliavkoff addressed the media Friday morning and addressed some of that speculation head on.
Some of his answers related to potential realignment in general across the college football landscape.
But he also specifically responded to the rumors that the Big 12 Conference could be looking to pounce if Pac-12 member schools are unhappy.
Kliavkoff was short and to the point when asked about teams being “poached” by the Big 12.
Kliavkoff said that the Pac-12’s silence on realignment rumors was purposeful and not sign of conference weakness.
“We could have spent all of last year getting into a he said/he said on every single rumor that’s been passed about our conference,” he said on Friday. “We decided to take the high road.”
Pac-12 Conference Leaders Expressing Overconfidence?
Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullens echoed Kliavkoff’s confidence.
“I’m not losing any sleep over that,” Mullins said when asked about Arizona, Colorado or Utah schools potentially leaving for the Big 12.
But should he be?
Every day the conference doesn’t announce a new media deal, speculation and uncertainty grows.
Media rights are the single most important part of college football revenue, and the key reason USC and UCLA are heading to the Big 10.
Arizona, Colorado, Utah and Arizona State don’t have the cachet of the LA schools, but there’s little doubt they’re just as eager to maximize revenue.
Kliavkoff and the other AD’s seem convinced that the Big 12 can’t make more a more compelling offer. Even though the conference just added four new programs.
That might be a bit of wishful thinking.
Or maybe the Pac-12 will be just fine. Stay tuned.