Stanford, the athletic program with more NCAA team championships than any other school, is on the verge of being left out of major college athletics. And, they’re willing to take a significant cut in TV revenue from the ACC to ensure that doesn’t happen.
The college athletics landscape has changed considerably in the last month, as six teams have left the PAC 12. Oregon and Washington left to go to the Big Ten, while Arizona, Arizona State, Utah, and Colorado are off to the Big 12, with those moves coming in 2024.
That leaves just Stanford, Cal, Oregon State, and Washington State in the PAC 12. Even if they were to add teams, that’s not a viable major conference. So, Stanford and Cal are especially desperate to get invited to the ACC, though the schools in that league aren’t necessarily going to approve that.
Stanford has not given up on getting an invitation to join the Atlantic Coast Conference as its fellow Pac-4 members in the Pacific Northwest hope to rebuild their plundered league and wait to find out if the Cardinal are in.
Leaders from Stanford, California, Oregon State and Washington State spoke Thursday, and Stanford told its colleagues it had informed the ACC that it would be open to joining the conference at greatly reduced or even no media rights payout for several years, a person familiar with the discussions told The Associated Press.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the schools were not making their internal discussions public.
If they were to do this, it would be devastating for the three other remaining PAC 12 schools, as they simply don’t have the financial capabilities that Stanford does to fund such a move.