Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NCF Nation [Print without images]

Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Should academics factor into BCS revenue?

By Adam Rittenberg

CHICAGO -- When a new TV agreement is finalized for college football's future postseason model, the conferences will have a substantially larger revenue pie to divide.

"Is it $350 million or $100 million?" Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson asked Wednesday.

No one knows for sure as negotiations are set to begin this fall, but every conference can see dollar signs in its future.

So how should they split up the dough?

CBSsports.com reported earlier this week that commissioners are considering a proposal that would assign revenue based on past on-field performance, including placements in the final BCS standings since 1998. In this model, the SEC and Big Ten have had the most teams in the final top-25 rankings and would get the most money.

Another factor could be academic performance. Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said Wednesday he would like the academic records of teams and leagues to help shape how revenue is divided.

"There ought to be a recognition somehow," he said. "There's recognition de facto in the sense that nobody's going to be playing in this event if they don't have a 930 [academic progress rate score], if they're not predicting a 50 percent graduation rate. The question is, is there something beyond that? ... I think it ought to be considered."

The latest APR scores came out Wednesday, and the Big Ten performed well. Northwestern led the Football Bowl Subdivision with a multiyear score of 995, while Ohio State received recognition for a score of 988. Eight of 12 Big Ten teams scored 950 or better.

A subcommittee on revenue sharing met early Wednesday at the Hotel InterContinental.

"It's a sensitive area, and it's an area where you have to listen closely," Delany said. "People want fair access, people want fair revenue sharing. Access, revenue sharing, contributions to the marketplace, some respect for the fact that these programs are sponsored by collegiate institutions. ... In principle, we probably are agreed. But you never know until you know the model exactly what you're doing to deal with.

"We worked it out last time. I'm sure we'll work it out this time."