> USC’s and UCLA’s move to Big Ten shakes up NCAA NCAA

USC’s and UCLA’s move to Big Ten shakes up NCAA

USC’s and UCLA’s move to Big Ten shakes up NCAA

Jul 06
SW Creative
  • SportsWriters

Jon Wilner of The Mercury News dropped a nuclear bomb on college football. USC and UCLA are planning to leave the Pac-12 for the Big Ten as early as 2024, according to his source. This move isn’t official and requires approval at the highest levels of power at both schools.

There will be major ramifications for the Pac-12 after USC football and UCLA basketball, which serve as he conference’s faces in their respective sports, leave.

Armegeddon for Pac 12

The Pac-12’s existing TV deals are about to expire, and this is a potential death blow for the conference. Losing both UCLA and USC would be devastating, since both are among the country’s most successful schools in football and men’s basketball, two of its most important sports. It would also cut off the conference from the entire Southern California market, not just Los Angeles. A lack of local teams will have a negative impact on both the Pac-12’s standing and its revenue – LA cable and satellite providers will be less likely to pay increased carriage fees for the Pac-12 Networks.

Big Ten wins big

The geographically absurd move makes a lot of sense for the Big Ten in terms of expanding its presence. On Saturdays in the fall, the conference could easily run four game windows (noon, 3:30 PM, primetime, 10 PM ET) most weeks, further enhancing its schedule. It also increases the inventory of games for networks, further allowing for the possibility that the package could be carved up between three, rather than two, partners for football.

 

TV market gets huge

By including USC and UCLA, the Big Ten dramatically improved its already-impressive TV coverage thanks to adding the lucrative Los Angeles market. That’s in addition to the entire Midwest, the New York area (Rutgers), the Washington area (Maryland), and Philadelphia (Penn State).

“We are excited about the opportunity this new partnership represents for The Ohio State University and for our student-athletes to compete with their peers from two storied athletics programs,” OSU President Kristina M. Johnson and athletic director Gene Smith said in a co-signed statement. “USC and UCLA are leading research universities that will enhance the Big Ten Conference in the classroom and on the field of competition. “More than 25,000 alumni of Buckeye Nation call the state of California home."

- Gene Smith - Ohio State AD

  • Larry Scott (sports administrator)

    Larry Scott November 21, 1964) is an American sports administrator and former professional tennis player who was the commissioner of the collegiate Pac-12 Conference until 2021.

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