The Big Ten shocked the sports world when they announced USC and UCLA would join the conference last summer. It’s a move that will change the college sports landscape in a considerable way.
It is a move that could essentially help kill off the PAC 12 as a major league. After all, USC and UCLA are the two biggest moneymakers for the league, and they will be leaving the conference starting in the fall of 2024, leaving a shortfall of television revenue.
Meanwhile, the Big Ten has signed a monster media rights deal that will make it the richest conference in all of college athletics.
BREAKING: The Big Ten has finalized new media rights deals with CBS, Fox, and NBC that are worth more than $7 billion over 7 years.
At $1 billion-plus annually, that makes it the largest media rights deal in the history of college athletics.
College football is a big business🤯
— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) August 18, 2022
But, questions remained how the Big Ten would do scheduling, considering that USC and UCLA are so far away from the rest of the conference.
A new report by On3 has shed some details.
The information for the report came from public records requests to UCLA. Here are a few important excerpts from the report.
An info sheet provided in an email to UCLA’s head coaches on June 30 stated UCLA will provide priority enrollment to athletes to offer early access to courses “to manage their athletic and travel commitments around their academic interests.” The school will “maintain virtual academic support services via Zoom.”
The conference also plans to allow for multiple programs from the same school, or even competing schools, to share charter flights, if they so desire. One example listed is scheduling competitions in women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer at the same two schools on the same weekend.
The Big Ten could also schedule programs at UCLA and USC to travel to the same region of the country if the two schools are willing to share charter flights. According to the document, the conference will explore using travel partners “where competition schedules permit.”
One idea included in the info sheet is multiple-team events at the same location. Those events could be held on campus or at neutral sites near major airports, such as Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis and Minneapolis.
The potential for on-campus events could include identifying “one or two campuses per year (rotating year-over-year) to allow multiple teams in the same sport to compete in multiple games at the same location on a single trip,” according to the info sheet. “This could apply across the conference, not just to UCLA/USC.”
This could make things a lot easier on USC and UCLA. But, having the two rivals share charter flights would be pretty funny and could lead to some awkward situations.
Either way, it’s going to be a new-look Big Ten in 2024.