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SBD/May 14, 2012/Colleges
Sources Say Many In ACC Upset With ESPN Deal; FSU Could Look To Big 12
Published May 14, 2012
PLAYING FAVORITES? WARCHANT.com’s Gene Williams noted the ACC "surrendered all third tier television rights for football to ESPN/ABC but kept them for men's basketball." Haggard said, "It's mind-boggling and shocking. How can the ACC give up third tier rights for football but keep them for basketball?" Williams noted the arrangement "will likely result in substantial revenue for schools with a strong basketball following like North Carolina and Duke," but it will "do very little for schools with a more traditional football following like FSU, Clemson, Virginia Tech and Miami." Haggard: "It continues the perception that the ACC favors the North Carolina schools." Haggard "confirmed that as far as he knows there has been no contact between FSU and the Big 12 regarding possible expansion." Haggard said, "With the SEC making the kind of money it does it's time to act. You can't sit back and be content in the ACC. This is a different time financially. This isn't 10-15 years ago when money was rolling in" (WARCHANT.com, 5/12). FSU President Eric Barron late Saturday “felt compelled to issue a public apology to the ACC,” as “part of Haggard’s statement was based on misinformation regarding terms of the deal.” Barron went on to say that FSU is “not seeking an alternative to the ACC.” Haggard said he would back down from some of his comments if he "spoke on poor information." He added that he "remains concerned that the ACC isn't bringing in enough revenue to compete with rivals" in the SEC, Big 12 and other conferences. Haggard: "All I tried to say was I think Florida State needs to keep an open mind. If the Big 12 or the SEC or any other conference wants to talk, we have an obligation to listen. If the Big 12 calls, should we hang up the phone? No. I'm not saying take it. I'm saying listen to it" (TALLAHASSEE DEMOCRAT, 5/14).
MONEY TALKS: ORANGEBLOODS.com's Chip Brown wrote at FSU right now "money is a problem," and the school’s basketball arena and football facilities "are in desperate need of renovation/upgrades." FSU officials are "probably taking a hard look at the ability to launch their own TV network in the Big 12." Brown wrote even with the new money from the ACC-ESPN contract, FSU is “going to be hard-pressed to raise the kind of money needed for a major facility upgrade" (ORANGEBLOODS.com, 5/9).