MIAMI—Big East commissioner Mike Aresco met with his conference brethren here on Tuesday to continue the finalization of plans for college football’s new four team playoff format which will begin in January of 2015.
Aresco is here as the commissioner of a conference which will be competing for one of the 6 slots that will be awarded to teams in the new set up.
On Friday, Aresco will be in Dallas at a Big East meeting that will include conference newcomers such as Memphis, SMU and Houston. He is still hoping that it will include San Diego State. Aresco said on Tuesday that representatives from San Diego State would be at the meeting in Dallas. “As far as I know, they plan on being there,” said Aresco on Tuesday afternoon.
According to sources familiar with the negotiation process involving SD State, as well as the ongoing television contracts in basketball and football that Aresco and the Big East are conducting, Aresco is also closing in on a multi-network deal with Fox sports, ESPN and NBC/Comcast. The total money figure is in flux because Aresco is working on multiple deals and packages.
What seems to be more clear is that the Big East should be able to finalize a deal which will extend its contract with ESPN in basketball for one more year using an inventory which includes not only the new group of schools such as Memphis and Temple who will be part of the league next season as well as Louisville and Notre Dame, who have announced they are leaving the Big East for the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Once those schools leave and the membership in the Big East is stabilized. Aresco can finalize the conference’s long-term television deal in football and basketball with a variety of networks, although ESPN is expected to maintain some relationship with the Big East.
While the Big East and Aresco were working on putting stability in their property, sources familiar with the talks being conducted among the BCS say that the Orange Bowl is considering an option which would move its BCS game to a permanent spot on New Year’s Eve–either in a 1 p.m slot in a non-football playoff semifinal position or in the 5 p.m. Eastern slot as one of the two semifinal games.
In the new arrangement which will be worked out over the next several months, the Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl are locked into January 1 time slots at 5 p.m and 8:30 p.m. with or without semifinal status.
The other access bowls in Phoenix and probably Arlington, as well as Atlanta will fill in spots available on New Year’s eve or New Year’s Day.
The Orange bowl originally had locked in a 1 p.m. New Year’s Day slot for its package with several exceptions. Putting the game into a permanent News Year’s Eve time slot creates some stability, which OB officials hope becomes part of the New Year’s Eve/Day culture.
The other news that should be coming from the BCS meetings is that Arlington, Texas will be the site of the first Playoff championship game on January 12, 2015.
© 2013, Mark. All rights reserved.