Rob from the poor, give to the rich. Welcome to commissioner Dan Beebe's new Big 12.
Thanks in part to a revenue distribution deal that helped keep the league together, Kansas, Missouri, Kansas State, Iowa State and Baylor appear to have secured spots in the outhouse. The league's big three — Texas, Oklahoma and Texas A&M — have reservations in the penthouse.
The Kansas City Star reported that the five poorest members of the league made an offer to use their shares of penalty money to ensure a certain level of revenue distribution to Texas, Oklahoma and Texas A&M.
The penalty money, which would be revenue withheld from distribution to departing members Colorado and Nebraska over the next two years, could total $35 million to $40 million, the newspaper reported.
Texas president Bill Powers said on Tuesday that the arrangement "was not part of our consideration [for staying], and we oppose that kind of deal."
Texas and Oklahoma plan to start TV networks within two years, which likely will drive an even bigger stake between the league's haves and have-nots.
Other items of note surrounding the league:
Sports By Brooks: Texas A&M athletic director Bill Byrne has been besieged by angry Aggie fans who wanted A&M to join the Southeastern Conference. He reportedly called one, leaving a message that said the fan "needs his ass kicked."
Samuel McKewon, Nebraska State Paper: The "Texas problem" is never going away. Not for the Big 12, not for Beebe — who will try to jump ship at the first sign of shore — and, perhaps worst of all, not for Texas, whose appetite is insatiable and antithetical, frankly, to good sense. The Longhorns' reaction to the mere prospect of realignment was childish and hypocritical, an impulse of jealousy and base greed. The efficiency with which UT controlled and spun the story through the media is startling. And mark these words: Texas will test the open market again — with its Longhorns Sports Network firmly in place — and present itself to whichever conference is willing to bend its rules to fit UT under the umbrella.
Courtney Linehan, Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: Texas is like the schoolyard bully who steals the five bucks your mom gave you for lunch, then gives you a nickel back to keep quiet about it. That's why Texas Tech must start to act independently of the Longhorns.
Berry Tramel, Oklahoman: The collapse of the proposed Pac-16 was a lost opportunity for Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. Both would have been better off in a Southwest precinct of the NCAA's first mega-conference.
Mike DeArmond, Kansas City Star: Missouri officials would not answer repeated questions about whether they felt misled by the Big Ten and commissioner Jim Delany.
J. Brady McCollough, Kansas City Star: Detailing the four frenzied days that saved the Big 12 from demise.
Randy Riggs and Ralph K.M. Haurwitz, Austin American-Statesman: Texas is looking at startup costs between $15 million and $30 million to launch its network.
John Henderson, Denver Post: Show me the money: Beebe has promised increased revenue to league teams, but doesn't have anything in writing from TV networks.
Kyle Ringo, Boulder Daily Camera: Colorado has no regrets leaving the Big 12 for the Pac-10.
Associated Press: Missouri governor Jay Nixon, who earlier advocated the Tigers jumping to the Big Ten, took a shot at departing Big 12 members Nebraska and Colorado, calling them the league's "two weakest basketball programs."
Woody Paige, Denver Post: Former Colorado coach Bill McCartney said the Buffaloes' rivalry with Nebraska will not end in 2010. "Over? Never. We're not going to miss Nebraska. Colorado and Nebraska will play every year ... in the Rose Bowl. We just don't have to ever go back to Lincoln."