Answers to your Pac-12 questions
Well, it's all over but the shouting ... and actually, plenty of shouting has already been heard. Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott rolled...
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Well, it's all over but the shouting ... and actually, plenty of shouting has already been heard. Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott rolled out the conference's plan for adding Colorado and Utah on Thursday. Some liked it. Some didn't.
Beyond the major headlines, a few questions remain:
Q: Why will the Bay Area and L.A. schools play each other every year in football?
A: The four California schools insisted from the beginning they be allowed to schedule each other every season, citing the long rivalries of the teams.
Q: Why will the conference championship football game be played at campus sites instead of a neutral site?
A: Scott talked about the great atmosphere that would come with a game played at a host school (even if that means less revenue if it's played at one of the conference's smaller stadiums). The Pac-10 also wanted to reward the best team during the regular season with home-field advantage. The division winner with the better record will host the game.
Q: Can USC play in the football championship game next season?
A: Not unless the Trojans win their appeal and the NCAA reduces a two-year bowl ban that begins this season. A conference championship game is considered a postseason game, and the Trojans wouldn't be eligible in 2011.
Q: Where will the game be played if Washington is hosting in 2011 or 2012?
A: Renovation of Husky Stadium will begin before the end of next season, forcing the 2011 Apple Cup to move to Qwest Field. So if the Huskies were to host either next season or in 2012, the game would be played at Qwest.
Q: What about basketball?
A: All 12 teams will compete in one conference. Beginning with the 2011-12 season, men's and women's basketball teams will play home-and-home series against their traditional rivals, home-and-home against six other teams and single games against four teams, on a rotating basis.
Q: What about the other sports?
A: Football is the only sport that will have two divisions. Most of the other sports won't see much change, other than adding teams in the sports that Colorado and Utah compete in, and some scheduling issues.
Q: What does the new revenue-sharing plan mean?
A: The Pac-10 receives revenue from three major sources — football bowl games, the NCAA men's basketball tournament and TV contracts. Money from bowl games and the basketball tournament is shared equally but TV money is based on appearances, meaning USC, UCLA and Oregon have made more than the others in recent years. Starting in 2012-13, the revenue from TV contracts will be shared equally. Or it will be if the contracts total at least $170 million annually. If the contracts fall short of $170 million annually, USC and UCLA will get $2 million each more than the other schools.
Q: Actually, everyone is going to make more money on the next TV deal, right?
A: Yes. Scott is optimistic the 12-team league, with a conference championship football game, will do much better than it has in the past. The TV contracts for this school year are estimated at $60 million.
Q: Is more expansion possible?
A: It's possible, but nothing seems likely in the near future. Scott did say that the moves make the Pac-12 "extremely well positioned" if there's another move nationally toward super-conferences as almost happened last spring.
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