Big 12 stable but 'behind' because of TV deal
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DALLAS -- Big 12 Conference commissioner Bob Bowlsby asserted that the league is healthy, stable and unlikely to expand anytime soon, remarking it should be "the toughest fraternity in America to join," quelling expansion chatter in his opening remarks at the conference's media days.
Bowlsby touched on multiple subjects in his address, noting the league's television contract is not yet finalized, but that he expects a 13-year grant of rights when it is.
"We are admittedly a ways behind ... it's been a painstaking process but I expect in the end we will have a 13-year grant of rights on television."
Bowlsby said if the league voted today he would not expect more than two votes in favor of expansion.
"We really are headed for a period of stability. Having said that, expansion is on every conferences list of discussion items," he said.
Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads, a former defensive coordinator at Pitt, disputed the perception that defense in the Big 12 is substandard.
"I don't think it's accurate," he said. "There is all kinds of offensive talent in this league. They're going to get the points. You've got to manage it. You can give up low 30s in a particular game and say nice job and really [believe] you played good defense cause you did."
Rhoads said it's simple to infer teams are not good defensively when they give up 30 points a game, but it's really more complicated than that.
"It's a simple thing to do when you look at the offensive output, that would be the easy thing to do. But when you sit there and study film from Sunday night to Saturday's kickoff you certainly have a different opinion."
Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones was asked about West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith being named the preseason player of the year and respectfully replied: "It is what it is. We were ranked No. 1 last year and we didn't win a national championship."
Jones also said the tradition of elite quarterbacks in the Big 12 continues this year: "It seems like every team in the conference has that guy that can be the dynamic player that changes games."
Interim Big 12 commissioner Chuck Neinas was recognized by the conference by becoming the namesake of one of its major awards. Bowlsby said the football coach of the year award was dubbed as the Chuck Neinas Big 12 Conference Coach of the Year Award.
First Published July 24, 2012 12:00 am