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The PAC-12’s future outlook continues to look pretty murky.
George Kliavkoff has so far failed to land a new media deal for the conference, and it looks like it’s still not likely going to happen in the near future.
ESPN published a deep dive into the situation, and two very notable things stuck out. There’s been a ton of chatter about the PAC-12 possibly having to go exclusively to streaming in order to survive amid limited interest from traditional networks.
However, it sounds like that’s not really an option. ESPN reported the PAC-12 will not entertain the idea and “a streaming-only media deal with no presence on traditional television is not an option for the league.”
ESPN did report the PAC-12 is leaving the door potentially open to a streaming giant like Apple or Amazon “sublicensing to traditional television.”
Revenue could be a huge issue for the PAC-12.
Another major problem for the PAC-12 is how much money a new media deal will be worth. Oregon and Washington are reportedly prepared to jump ship to the Big Ten, and the B1G might take them at a reduced rate. That rate would probably be around $40 million annually if it was a 50% reduced split.
The Big 12 will pay members $31.7 million annually with its new media deal. Can the PAC-12 reach or exceed that number?
The same ESPN report claimed “the chances of the Pac-12 ending up in that neighborhood are unlikely, mostly because no one can understand where the money would come from.”
If Kliavkoff can’t at least match the Big 12’s money, why wouldn’t schools leave? The Big 12 has been very open about wanting to expand west.
There’s been reported contact between Brett Yormark’s conference and Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado and Utah. If those four schools can’t at least earn the same in the PAC-12, jumping ship only makes sense.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. The west coast conference seemingly remains in huge trouble based on the evidence in front of us. George Kliavkoff, for the sake of his job, better figure it out soon. Otherwise, things could rapidly fall apart.