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UTEP AD talks C-USA tv revenue seys it ain't realignment
By Coach Bill Lewis
A declining cable television market, a growing gap between the major and midmajor conferences and some losses suffered in realignment are about to add up to a significant loss in revenue for Conference USA.
The league will soon announce its new television deal, likely in a week at the C-USA meetings in Dustin, Fla., and a number of reports show revenues declining by about half, to around $7 million a year total for the 14 schools from the current amount of just over $14 million. That means the University of Texas at El Paso's cut of revenue will go from about $1 million a year to half that.
"We anticipate around that," UTEP athletic director Bob Stull said. "It will be down. We don't know how much."
The current deal was negotiated in 2011 and C-USA is the first midmajor conference (a group including the Sun Belt, Mountain West, American Athletic and MAC) to negotiate a new deal since the 2012 realignment.
Conference USA won't comment until the deal is announced, but Commissioner Judy MacLeod did make some general statements in a speech to the Norfolk Sports Club last week.
"Right now, the television market is horrible," she said in comments reported by the Virginian-Pilot. "ESPN eliminated 300 jobs and Fox Sports is doing away with a lot of its regional staffs.
"The way people consume content is rapidly changing. We have young people who work in our office who don’t have cable or DirecTV. The pool of money that's there is going to the big guys. The Big Ten and the SEC are must-see TV."
Read more: El Paso Times
New C-USA Commissioner MacLeod needs to make several big plays
Conference USA's decision to name Judy MacLeod as its new commissioner is an historic move, making it the first intercollegiate league at the Football Bowl Subdivision level to put a woman in its highest post. Adding to the attention that comes from such a milestone, the challenges MacLeod inherits are also monumental, and how she handles them will directly impact the University of Texas at San Antonio and the future of its athletics programs — especially a fledgling football program that needs to continue building momentum on and off the field.
“The financial aspects of the job will be extremely important. Getting a new television contract and dealing with the bowl arrangements we have is key,” UTKFC Athletics Director Lynn Hickey told me. “When it comes to our split of the football bowl money, we want to be at the top.”
C-USA also needs to improve its branding, and it’s critical that MacLeod create more stability in a conference that saw several member universities leave for other conferences on former Commissioner Britton Banowsky’s watch. There could be more shuffling across the collegiate landscape as a result of the decision by the so-called Power Five conferences — the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC — to seek autonomy from the rest of the pack.
“There are other issues,” said Hickey, one of two female athletic directors in C-USA. “How do we fit in with the new autonomy piece and the Power Five? How do we position ourselves to stay at the top of the second five conferences?”
read more: http://www.bizjournals.com/sanantonio/news/2015/10/30/UTKFC-s-hickey-new-c-usa-commissioner-macleod-needs.html?ana=twt