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Nominations are now being accepted for student-athlete delegates for the 2nd Annual NIL Summit, which will be hosted June 3-5, 2023, at the College Football Hall Of Fame in Atlanta. The submission deadline is Wednesday, May 10th, 2023.
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Texas AD Del Conte says DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium will get new LED lighting and an upgrade to concessions this spring and summer. Upgrades will include 22 more concession areas, particularly in the upper deck, and Del Conte says the lighting “needs a steady diet of night games for this to work,” and he anticipates that will happen in the SEC. Additionally, he says a new baseball video board should be ready for SEC play, a new tennis video board for this spring, and a 10K-sq-ft FB recruiting lounge will be completed this summer at the Moncrief Neuhaus Athletic Center. (link)
Iowa State AD Pollard on being forced to play last night’s MBB game against Texas on the Longhorn Network: “Can’t leave soon enough. [...] To get (the early exit) finalized allows us to move forward and be a lot more productive. Quite frankly, having that hanging out there made you do double of everything. A 14-team schedule and then a 12-team schedule. You had to do that for all sports. It caused a lot of extra work. Now having it finalized is nice. We can put it behind us and have more streamlined meetings where you don't feel like 'okay, for this part of the meeting you need to leave the room.’” (link)
As Montana State continues to level up its facilities amid one of its most successful athletic periods “in a generation,” according to MTN Sports’ Rachac, Bobcats AD Costello explains the improvements didn’t happen overnight and were made possible by being aligned with and supported by university administration. “We’re ahead of the game maybe from where I thought we would be. I think it’s gone very well. But I think the one thing that I really see is — what’s the word? — justification.” Despite raising the Bobcats’ profile, Costello says his ambitions as of right now don’t extend beyond Bozeman. “I think across the board in this business you can get caught up in what’s out there. I think over the last seven years I’ve been able to see how good we have it here. No matter where it is, it’s going to be really hard to match what we have.” (link)
Tuscaloosa-based attorney Standridge, who represents Alabama MBB student-athlete Miller, has released a statement clarifying Miller’s alleged involvement in the fatal shooting that has implicated former teammate Miles. In part: “Brandon never got out of his vehicle or interacted with anyone in Ms. Harris’ party. … Brandon never touched the gun, was not involved in its exchange to Mr. Davis in any way, and never knew that illegal activity involving the gun would occur.” Regarding allegations that Miller used his vehicle to block that of the victim’s, Standridge submits that Miller was already parked there when the vehicle pulled up behind him. “The street was never blocked by Brandon’s vehicle. Gunfire erupted shortly after the Jeep arrived and Brandon’s vehicle was struck by bullets fired from one of the guns. Brandon quickly left the area when gunfire erupted." More. (link)
+ Towson names Old Dominion Executive Senior Assoc. AD for Development and Revenue Generation Cegles as Deputy AD. (link)
+ East Tennessee State President Noland has been appointed to a four-year term to represent the Southern Conference on the DI Board of Directors. (link)
+ Knight Commission board member Bernard has been named co-chair, succeeding Zimpher, who has completed her eight-year term. The commission has also added Stavvy COO/former America East Commissioner Huchthausen, Washington sport medicine professor Harmon and Quinnipiac President Olian as members. (link)
+ Titus & Tate co-host Titus will join Barstool Sports and host a new show called The Mark Titus Show. (link)
The Athletic’s Vannini posits the Pac-12 is “nearing dire straits right now” in terms of its media rights negotiations after news that Apple+ has emerged as a potential landing spot. While he suspects the Pac-12 will be fine in the short term, Vannini notes the Pac-12 may be a “canary in the coal mine for college conferences outside what is becoming the Power 2 of the Big Ten and SEC. Streaming won’t be the answer to saving college football as we know it. We know this because streaming isn’t saving TV.” Apple and Amazon, Vannini asserts, do not provide the type of leverage the Pac-12 needs because a “move to heavy streaming would dramatically decrease game viewership and threaten to speed the conference into irrelevancy. In a sport based around recruiting and donors, people need to find your games easily. ESPN knows this. It’s why Conference USA rushed back to ESPN as part of its new TV deal and away from streaming places like Stadium.” (link)
SBJ’s Ourand weighs in on the Pac-12 media rights negotiations: “Here’s the problem the Pac-12 faces: There was a good deal to be had six months ago. … In the ensuing six months, all of the traditional television stations,” including CBS, Fox and NBC have filled much of their available slots for college football, while ESPN is “becoming a lot more cost-conscious. There are the must-have programming, which the NBA falls in, the NFL falls in, certain big college conferences fall in. Right now, it doesn’t look like the Pac-12 is falling into that.” Furthermore, Wall Street is no longer prioritizing gaining subscribers. “They want to see profits. So, whereas you had all of these streaming companies competing against each other to drive up the prices in bidding wars, now they have to have a lot more discernment. … The big question mark is with Apple. Will Apple want to do a deal with…all of the Pac-12 rights, with the Pac-12 Networks, with the actual conference itself that will mirror what they’re doing with the MLS.” (link)
Gonzaga needs a bidding war as it considers its next move in the realignment landscape, according to JohnCanzano.com’s maestro, who notes: “Gonzaga isn’t yet ready to leave the WCC. But the Bulldogs are apparently kicking the tires.” Canzano goes on to point out the Zags have averaged 657K viewers for MBB games over the past three seasons, while the “typical Pac-12 team averages about 200K viewers.” Furthermore, the Zags have earned more MBB tournament units than anyone in the country over the past five years. But, the Bulldogs don’t play football, which has left the Pac-12 with a lukewarm desire to invite them into the fold. Canzano concludes, however, that the Pac-12 “should look hard at Gonzaga. Not just because the Big 12 is, but because the school is located within the conference’s footprint and offers a way to replace UCLA’s brand and success in men’s hoops.” One media industry source adds: “If you’re the Pac-12, I think you’re crazy not to look at a brand that would drive value.” (link)
ESPN VP of Production Lowry announces that in addition to the WBB national championship game airing on ABC for the first time, so will the hour-long pregame show, the Dallas Morning News’ Assimakopoulos (real name) reports. (link)
Take a sneak peek at what Augustana’s new Midco Arena will look like, including the rink, puck-shooting room, soccer locker room, training room and strength and conditioning center for all student-athletes. (link)
The Central Arkansas WBB team will end its season due to roster attribution. The Sugar Bears began the season with 10 student-athletes and, because of departures and injuries, currently have just five players available for competition. (link)
D1Baseball’s Rogers reports the “NCAA Student-Athlete Experience Committee has indicated it will support a blanket waiver for the next year to increase the Roster Limit to 40 and Increase Scholly Counters to 32. This is expected to be approved by the NCAA Legislative Relief Committee in mid-March. … Right now, 27 players get 11.7 scholarships divided up. This would allow 32 players to get 11.7 divided up. This waiver, however, would ONLY be for the next year. The NCAA Division I Baseball Management Committee is expected to be formed this summer, and would then 'formally' approve and make this an ironclad change for Division I.” (link, link)
+ In the 10 months since the Clemson-focused TigerImpact collective launched last April, it has grown its war chest of $5.5M from three dozen “big-money donors” to $8.3M in commitments from over 200 donors, the Post and Courier’s Blau reports, adding that the collective expected to have 75 student-athlete “ambassadors” on contract as of this week. The goal is to have 100 student-athletes representing all sports in the fold before the collective’s one-year anniversary. (link)
+ The Light It Blue collective has launched to support Utah State student-athletes. (link)
Iona MBB HC Pitino tells CBS’ Norlander he would like to coach for another five or six years, explaining that “I still exercise like a demon. I still get after it.” With some high-profile jobs potentially coming open, Pitino says it would take “someplace really, really special with the type of president that I have here” for him to leave the Gaels. “Now, it's easy. I got exonerated by the NCAA, they said you didn't do anything, now it's easy to hire me. But Seamus Carey didn't have that guarantee. … If I wanted to leave, it would be a job that I thought could get to a Final Four. It would be a great place where I want to live, but I don't see it happening. I don't see it happening. I'm really tied into these kids. And they came because of me." (link)
Former Duke MBB HC Krzyzewski talks about his next phase with The Athletic’s Marks, telling him he’s not living in the past or resting on previous accomplishments. “When I say I don’t miss it, it doesn’t mean I didn’t love it. I just think I squeezed every bit of joy from that sponge, you know?” Krzyzewski does still speak with ACC Commissioner Phillips and NABC Executive Director Robinson about what he believes is a lack of direction within college athletics and tells Marks: “In the history of our game, in the NCAA, by the time any bit of legislation did the circuitous route of going through however many damn committees it goes through, when it finally gets to the committee that’s making the decision, there has never been a coach in the room explaining the ramifications. It’s idiotic.” If individuals from the NCAA were to approach him about being more involved with the industry’s next steps, Coach K says he’d “like to know what it is. Like, I’m not a big Knight Commission person. I think some of those things are, come on — you’ve never done anything. If you would’ve done something, you would foresee that these things are happening.” Lots more. (link)
More Coaches Corner…
+ Nebraska removes the interim tag from Track & Field HC St. Clair’s title. (link)
+ Boston U. signs Men’s Lacrosse HC Polley to a multiyear extension. (link)
+ Adidas and MLS are extending their partnership with a new six-year, $830M deal through 2030. Sportico’s Novy-Williams observes the new pact is the “latest sign of growth for the league,” which now has an average club valuation of $582M, led by LAFC’s $900M valuation. (link)
+ A new sports betting bill in Kentucky could create up to 27 sports wagering apps through nine horse racetrack licensees. PlayUSA’s Kredell: “The sponsor tells me that, even with the two-thirds threshold in odd years, the House has the votes and the Senate may only be a vote or two away.” (link)
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