NEWS. Ohio State Football, The Week That Was

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Last updated: 04/15/2011 12:41 PM
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The Week That Was
By Tony Gerdeman

I'm currently 60/40 on whether or not I'm going to finish this. Now spread this great news far and wide and speak of how I mightn't!


Breaking News: Terrelle Pryor Likely To Return To School

On Monday, the National Football Post created a stir by stating that a source told them that Terrelle Pryor was thinking of entering the NFL's Supplemental Draft.

According to the source, Pryor's leaning computed out to 60/40 in favor of staying.

I don't doubt the source or the story, and Pryor's tweet stating he wasn't going anywhere only confirmed them both--he was staying.

Although if you want to panic, Pryor's tweet that he would be taking the field against Nebraska and looking forward to another Michigan beatdown has since been removed, so perhaps he's thinking even more about the Supplemental Draft again. Maybe 55-45?!

Run with that!

The moral of the story is that if you're only going to use one source, make sure that one person is telling you something that you already know is going to happen simply because it's the only logical answer to choose from.

Why is it the only logical answer? Because with the NFL lockout, right now there isn't even a Supplemental Draft to enter.

The only problem I had with the actual story--other than the fact that it wasn't actually a story--is the following:

According to a source, the odds of Pryor staying for his senior season are about 60-40, but Notre Dame receiver Michael Floyd coming out and declaring for the supplemental draft would have a direct effect on his decision.

I'm still baffled as to why a wide receiver's decision would affect Pryor, a quarterback.

That's like pushing a Saw movie back a week or two because they don't want to open against The Smurfs as the audiences would be too similar.

What does one have to do with the other?

But I digress. I wish I could have come up with a story that isn't a story, and then watch it get picked up by every content monger out there and become grist for the mill.

The story becoming a story is more of a story to me than the actual story, which wasn't actually ever a story to begin with.

The 60/40 piece was picked up by everybody. Bloggers, networks, radio shows, and even radio news briefs.

In other words, everybody who needed to fill time or page views. Sadly, nobody ever stopped to read what the math in the story actually came out to--Pryor is staying at Ohio State. How is that news again?

We didn't even address it here because we were busy with actual spring goings-on. Though if our readers wanted a "Terrelle Pryor is Going to Play His Senior Year of College Football Like He Always Said He Was Going to Do!!!" piece, we can probably come up with something.

I'm still not sure why it would be news, though. Does the Evening News ever lead with, "This is the evening news, and OMG it's the evening!! We never saw this coming!!"

Of course not. Nobody should. This week, for some reason, they did.


The Slippery Slope of Massive TV Deals

News came down this week that FOX and the Big XII had finally reached a broadcasting deal that will start in 2012. The deal is worth $1.17 billion over 13 years, or $90 million annually.

The deal will provide FOX with a minimum of 40 football games every year, as well as all of the other sports that would come with it and have to get crammed somewhere where they'd do the least amount of damage.

The platforms that FOX will use will mostly be their regional affiliates, their Fox College Sports brand, and F/X as well. There could also be games on primetime FOX broadcast, but since ESPN still has the pick of the litter, finding a game worthy of primetime slotting might be difficult.

ESPN will hold those first-tier rights until the 2015-2016 seasons, so don't be surprised when FOX makes a play for those as well when the time comes.

FOX, who already owns a 49% share in the Big Ten Network, is dying to cut into ESPN's college football dominance, but so are Comcast, Turner and NBC.

Why the sudden Beanie Baby Fervor surrounding what used to almost be a secret? Simple. The DVR.

The only place where people watch commercials anymore is during sports broadcasts. Think about it--of the shows that you watch on a weekly basis, how many do you watch "live"? Now compare that to the percentage of sports that you watch live.

Sports have to be watched live. In today's age, it's almost impossible to avoid a score if you're trying to DVR a game. Networks and advertisers know this, and that's why they're coming hard after the last great advertising gold rush.

Iit's no coincidence that two days after FOX and the Big XII announce their deal, word comes from the Wall Street Journal that the Pac 12 is asking for a deal worth $2.2 billion over ten years!

With NBC, Comcast, FOX and Turner all interested, the scary thing is that they just might get it.

With so much money on the line, the concern then comes from influential media outlets protecting their investments. Then respective news outlets stop becoming news outlets and start becoming propaganda machines.

Will FOX, which will have to create a greater studio presence in college football, become simply a promotional tool for their assets the way ESPN has for the SEC? With the amount of money out there now, they certainly will.

Where will it stop?  FOX will have the Big XII and the Big Ten. ESPN has the SEC and the ACC. The Pac 12 is currently a free agent, and the Big East will be on the market in a few years.

Not only will you have competing teams and conferences, you'll also have competing media entities. Unfortunately, opinions might become more important than ever--and even worse, many of those opinions will be bought and paid for.

Fortunately for everyone involved, there will eventually be too much money on the table for a playoff, nobody will be able to refuse it, and those purchased opinions will lose value.

Even though it seems like every team in a major conference is about to be set for life, a ton of money generally has a way of making you want another ton. Advertisers are going to continue to pay out like an ATM for programming that isn't fast-forwarded.

This will again spur expansion, because more teams means more inventory, which means more premium advertising. Schools currently sitting outside the gold rush would run over their own mothers for the opportunity at $25 million per year, especially when they're lucky to get 1/10th of that right now.

The Haves and Have Nots are coming. It would be best not to be one of the Have Nots, and they all know it.


Fourth Time's the Charm?

If I did my math right, it looks like Auburn has four separate NCAA investigations going on right now.

If the NCAA proposed an Amnesty Day for all NCAA violators, what do you think a vote comprised of all FBS schools would look like?

I'm guessing 98% of the schools would be in favor of it and use it. The only two schools to vote NO would be Alabama and Auburn, because they simply refuse to admit that they have ever done anything wrong.


A Series Only a Mike Can Love

It was announced on ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike Show earlier in the week that Northwestern and Notre Dame would play a home and home in 2014 (South Bend) and 2018 (Evanston).

The reason the announcement was made on ESPN Radio was because the show's two hosts are Northwestern and Notre Dame graduates. Which sort of feeds into my earlier point about networks controlling and extolling opinions.

Remember when ESPN Radio used to talk about hockey and Arena Football? It's because they broadcasted both sports. Now that they no longer air them, when was the last time you heard either discussed for any length of time on any ESPN platform.

(Yes, ESPN used to talk about Arena Football.)

In reality, it'll be a fun series for Chicagoland, but just another series for everybody else--regardless of what ESPN tries to tell you.


Statues That Can't Be Taken Back By Any Downtown Athletic Club

Last weekend, the University of Florida unveiled statues of the winners of the Gators' three Heisman Trophies during halftime of the team's spring game. Steve Spurrier, Danny Wuerffel, and Tim Tebow were all bronzely honored, though Spurrier was the lone non-attendee because he had a spring game of his own that day.

Not to be outdone (because that's just not acceptable in the SEC), Alabama will unveil their Nick Saban statue on Saturday prior to their spring game.

As things have to be done when it comes to Alabama and Auburn, the statue is currently under 24-hour watch, and a police presence is never far away.

I'm sure we can all imagine in the near future a Youtube of some Auburn fans pulling the Saban statue down, reminiscent of Saddam Hussein's statue being torn down in Iraq.

Not to be outdone by Alabama, who is not trying to be outdone by Florida, who was actually initially not trying to be outdone by Alabama, Auburn has announced that they too will be unveiling statues of their three Heisman Trophy winners later in the year.

They will do Florida one better. Or one-half better, I guess. The Gator statues are life-size, but Pat Sullivan, Bo Jackson and Cam Newton will be commemorated at 1.5 times the size that they actually are.

There are rumors that LSU may get involved and build a Les Miles statue, but they can't get him to hold still long enough to do a mold.

Florida was also going to do an Urban Meyer statue, but they were worried that it would've had to move to Ohio, and statues over a certain height are against Upper Arlington ordinances.

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