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REShow: Bruce Feldman - Hour 1 (7-1-2022)

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July 1, 2022 3:09 pm

REShow: Bruce Feldman - Hour 1 (7-1-2022)

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen

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July 1, 2022 3:09 pm

Rich recaps the stunning back-to-back turn of events yesterday that say UCLA and USC jumping to from the Pac-12 to the Big 10 followed by Kevin Durant asking the Brooklyn Nets.

College Football Insider Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports and the Athletic tells Rich how UCLA and USC bolting to the Big 10 came about, what happens next to the Pac-12’s top remaining schools like Oregon in the wake of the Bruins’ and Trojans’ defections, how conference realignment could impact the College Football Playoff, and how Steve Sarkisian was able to lure prized 5-star QB recruit Arch Manning to the Texas Longhorns. 

Rich list his top 5 moments from the week in sports, and ponders the possibility of relegation for lesser football programs in a new college football super conference.

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This fascinates me. I love it. Live from the Rich Eisen Show studio in Los Angeles. Oh my God, it is coming. The Super League of College Athletics is coming.

And you better get on board. Today's guests, Fox Sports College football reporter Bruce Feldman, WWE Hall of Famer Bill Goldberg, plus your phone calls, TJ's big ass grab bag and more. And now, it's Rich Eisen. Well, hey everybody. Welcome to this edition of the Rich Eisen Show. First day of July, everybody.

Here we are in Los Angeles, California. Lots to talk about on this program today. With you, 844-204-RICH.

Number to dial. We say hello to the Peacock audience, the Sirius XM audience, the Terrestrial Radio audience, and the Rich Eisen Show Terrestrial Radio network for the Odyssey app. For those listening to this show, I got a fresh cut, and I am wearing a French blue shirt that matches the color scheme of this show, and accents my tan. I'm feeling good, and Lewis is looking good and feeling good.

I'm clinking glasses with you across the way, Chris Brockman. That's how I'm feeling on this July one. It's Lewis' birthday today. Is it really? Yeah. Pass. What's up? I did not know that it was Dan Act, right?

My doppelganger's birthday, or I'm his doppelganger. You feel like unbuttoning just like one more button, too? Is it too much?

No, no, I think you should do one more button. Well, again, I'm not Dr. Jerry Buss. I am. Good to see you over there, Jay Felley. How are you, brother? Good to see you.

TJ Jefferson. Let's go, sir. What's up, sir? Well, it's Friday.

I got two new Arch Manning cards, so the down payment on the boat's coming. That's all I'm saying. Well invested. Okay.

The down payment on- Bruce Feldman of The Athletic and Fox Sports, who covers college football, will be joining us shortly on this program. So, I'd like to start today by sharing a little bit with you. Okay.

And sharing a dream that I had. You want to lay down on the couch? No, it's okay. Okay.

This is the figurative couch. I'm just going to... But just, you know, let me talk it all out before you analyze it. Okay, guys? All right?

Would you mind? Just let me get it out. It was a work dream. You know, you ever have those work dreams where you're at work and you're maybe not thinking straight? So, I'm at work. I'm on this show.

This job. In this chair. We're still here?

Yeah. You guys are all here. You guys are all here. You're all in the dream. Continue, then. You're all in the dream. Of course you are. Me or Mike?

You. Oh, good. Okay, so this is like a Friday.

No, this happened. It's very vivid. But I just need to talk it out.

All right. So, I'm having this dream and I'm thinking, what am I going to talk about on the show? It's one of those things. What am I going to talk about? What am I going to talk about? I don't know. And so, I'm working through it. And then, all of a sudden, in this dream, again, crazy, USC and UCLA leave the Pac-12 for the Big Ten.

Even though, you know, UCLA and USC are here in Southern California, and the Big Ten is most certainly not, you know, just totally up-end college football. And then, an hour later, or it feels like an hour later, not too long later, Kevin Durant announces that, or it comes out that he's asked the Nets for a trade on the three-year anniversary of him joining the Nets with Kyrie Irving, blowing it all up. And even though it just, and again, you know how sometimes dreams just mix together. This happens just six days after he goes on a, does Durant have his own podcast?

Am I dreaming that too? Yeah, his own podcast. Okay, goes on his own podcast and asked about the rumors that the Nets are running the risk of alienating him and he can ask for trade and end this whole thing. He calls it just mere rumors and conjecture. It's going to be an interesting couple of weeks, obviously, for the Brooklyn Nets franchise and a lot of reports. I've been here with you for two days, three days. Not many phone calls over here, so I don't know. Yeah, I mean, it's just reports, you know how rumors go around this time, it's draft time, the finals just ended, so, you know, we got to keep that, you know, you just got to keep that dialogue going and keep the engagement going, you know. So obviously we're an interesting topic, we got a lot going on with our team, uncertainty with Ben, not playing last year, us being swept in the playoffs, Kyrie situation, being a free agent, you know, so there's a lot of uncertainty with our team, so I understand why there's so much noise around us, but as individuals, just control what you can and move forward, you know, so when the time is right, everything will work out for itself. Okay, so did I not dream this, did this happen?

It's not a lie, if you believe it. No, it did all happen, it was so crazy yesterday. What the hell's going on? It was so ridiculous.

And you were there, and you were there, and you were there, and I was here, and you were there. What the hell's going on out here? Pretty much.

That happened within the span of an hour yesterday. Nuts. UCLA and USC are in the Big Ten, the Pac-12 is essentially done. There is a Midwest-based college football and basketball and sports conference that now includes a team in New Jersey and two teams in California.

UCLA and USC, starting in 2024, if they make the Rose Bowl, they'll make the Rose Bowl as the Big Ten team. The hell going on? And Kevin Durant saying on one Friday, June 24th, eh, it's all just conjecture, you know, it'll all work out when the time's right. Well, when the time comes up for him to work out and to beat it on down the road, how's that playing in New York, I wonder?

Well, let's see how it's playing on the back page of the New York Post. Oh, KD demands trade from Nets. Thin Man has no heart.

Durant begs out after a single playoff series win for $119.3 million. Oh, so it's playing like that. Thin Man. Thin Man. That's hilarious. Oh, God, the Post is the best. Of course, the Post puts Jalen Brunson at the top, born to Brun. Nice one. Nice one.

The headline writers never disappoint at the Post. Reference to the New Jersey boss, just like Kyrie. He's a New Jersey boss.

Like Tony? Why did Durant opt out? Why? Because Kyrie's opting in. Did that mean he's opting out? Why did Durant opt out? Is it because Ben Simmons, he wants no piece of that guy? He wants no piece of Steve Nash? He wants no piece of Brooklyn?

What is happening? Because Durant, Kyrie, Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, and a trade that our friend Brian Windhorst brought to light on First Take this morning, causing him to go on in a very interesting jag about how keep an eye on Utah, because Utah traded away Royce O'Neal to the Nets. This was a trade that was wodgebombed five minutes before the ultimate wodgebomb that blew everything up in Durant world, saying that the Utah Jazz trading away a very good young 29-year-old player to the Nets. He's there too. Why would Durant say I'm out?

Why would he want to be out? What is up with that? It's wild. So confused.

It is totally wild. The Brooklyn Nets, three years ago yesterday, announced Kyrie and Durant, and this is all over with just one playoff series win, one. They waited for Durant to get healthy. They waited for Kyrie to come around so that he could play together with Durant. They get hardened too, and then trade him away? So the Nets are left with Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, I guess, Royce O'Neal, Steve Nash.

It's not your job. And this is a team that it's Spencer Dinwiddie and D'Angelo, Russell. They were doing some good things there. Caris Lavert, remember him? Kenny Atkinson. They had a really good coach. They had a bunch of young players with chemistry, and they just went kaboom because- And not who slept in the room. Kyrie and not who slept in the room.

Dude, I don't know man. Kyrie and Durant said they're coming and all of a sudden all these young guys' picks gone. And now what?

For nothing. Nick's coming off a highly disappointed season and their future looks brighter than the Brooklyn Nets. The hell going on? I mean, I still say, guys, my idea of merging the two franchises, why not give it a try? Chris, what's the worst that could happen?

I'm not sure. I mean, I was kind of tongue in cheek asking, did Durant screw up by picking the Nets over the Knicks? No, he screwed up by choosing the Nets over the Warriors. He should have stayed put. Well, like Chris said earlier- He should have stayed put and- That might not have been an option for him, I guess. Yeah, it just didn't seem like he got along with those guys. Or maybe one guy. I guess not.

I don't know. The loudest guy on the squad it seemed like had his shoes on. I'll just say this though, hey, Kevin Durant, because I know he sees a lot and he takes in a lot, that back page of Thin Man has no heart. First of all, New York Post, I think you're looking at the wrong net, okay? That's number one. Number two is Pat Riley once got ran out of New York on a rail when he left the Knicks to go to the Miami Heat.

Headline of gutless, called him gutless, quitting on New York. How's it worked out for Pat Riley? As a matter of fact, you know where I think Durant should go, Miami. That's where he should go.

Not just to prove me correct, but I think that's a fit. And I think the Heat are probably- I know you couldn't just say the Heat are bending over backwards trying to figure this thing out. Every franchise in the NBA, every last franchise in the NBA has got to take their Yolo shot. Everyone, your Sixers, Chris, your Celtics, absolutely should take that shot. Run it back, get Big Poppy, and I don't think Brady would wind up on Long Island this time for that. You remember that Hamptons wooing tour that wound up with him going to Golden State? Between us and Golden State. Big Poppy came there, they try to roll it out for Durant, instead they got the wrong guy in Kyrie.

That's the guy that the headline rider should be all over. But he's the one who opted in. And maybe his opt-in is for Durant to opt out.

Again, there's this huge iceberg, and we just see this little part, very, very tough. Kyrie's opt-in, that probably makes it easier for him to get traded to the Lakers, which is where it seems like he wants to go. And now you're hearing what the Lakers are going to try and get a package deal of both Kyrie and Durant to- I don't know who they're going to give up. I don't know what they're going to give up. The Coke-lugging West house. I don't know, brother.

How? The rumors are flying everywhere. I have no idea, which means, hey, maybe Durant didn't demand a trade because Kyrie opted in. It's just that they both got together and said, let's both get the hell out of here. Who knows? Nobody knows anything. Durant, again, said on his podcast, one week ago today, it's just rumors, it's just conjecture.

There's nothing to see here, move on. And then- He gone. The only thing that apparently came together quicker than the he gone was USC and UCLA. Where there were talks. There were talks.

Then on Tuesday, they pick up a phone, hey, Kevin Warren, Big Ten will take us. Will you take it? I don't know. Why don't you apply? Will you apply? Have you applied? Have you applied yet? Because there's an application.

You need to put in an application and then I'll forward the application to presidents and chancellors and then we'll figure it out. They already voted. How convenient. How did you do today?

What did you do today? That's like that Kramer line from Seinfeld talking about, you come home and you talk about your day, then USC and UCLA talked about their day. How would you like to join the Big Ten? Big Ten, will you take us from the PAC 12?

Oh yes, we will take you. And then all of a sudden, application, get on the phone, we're zooming with chancellors and team and school presidents and the Big Ten and boom, USC and UCLA are starting to play in the Big Ten in 2024. And if they make the Rose Bowl, they'll be the Big Ten team.

I'm just saying that. It's nuts. It could be USC versus Utah in the Rose Bowl and it'll be like, yeah, remember they played each other for 10 straight years? I saw a great picture of someone on Twitter put a big shot of the Santa Monica Pier and they wrote Big Ten Country. Big Ten Country. It is. It now is. You know, I got a text from Greer saying, how's it like to live in Big Ten Country? That's great. He texted me last night, how's it feel to live in Big Ten Country?

I tell you what, it feels good, 80 and sunny. Let me tell you, because Michigan will be playing UCLA and USC every year. You could add those two teams to the gotta play Michigan every year list because Michigan has to play these guys because Michigan is marquee.

Take that everyone else. Yeah, but it's not like USC or UCLA have been powerhouses recently. They're coming on a schedule. So I'm in, I'll go down to the Coliseum, I'll go to the Rose Bowl, one of my favorite places on planet earth.

Did my run there this year. It'll be great. I'll go. They might let you flip a coin at a game. No, why not? Why shouldn't you? Keep it fair, keep it fair. Bruce Feldman's going to talk to us. Why not? Thank you very much, Mr. Cannavale, whose son, by the way, was dynamite in the offer. Wait a minute, what? Yeah, Jake Cannavale is in the offer.

Who would he play? We'll talk about this offline. Oh, man. All right, we'll take a break right here. I want to be on time for Bruce Feldman, 844-204-rich, number to dial.

Bruce Feldman's going to tell us what the what, the what, the what happened and the hell going on in Pac-12 country and Big Ten country next. Does your antiperspirant keep you dry all day? Dove Men PlusCare Dry Spray goes on instantly dry for a cleaner feel and offers 48 hours sweat and odor protection. Let me repeat that, 48 hours of sweat and odor protection.

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Goes on dry, clean feel all day. Back here on the Rich Eisen Show, 844-204-rich, number to dial. Truly, when the news broke yesterday that USC and UCLA were on the verge of joining the Big Ten, I texted this man, I'm like, bring me Feldman, as if he's at my back and call him. So thrilled to have on the Mercedes-Benz Vans phone line a man who can help us make heads or tails of what the hell is happening in college football from Fox Sports and The Athletic, our friend Bruce Feldman back here on the program. How you doing, Bruce? I'm doing well, Rich.

Busy couple of days in college athletics. Well, I mean, it's just great to live in Big Ten country here in Los Angeles, Bruce. Just great.

Yeah. And you don't have to shovel. It's even better. That's the best country possible. Oh, my God.

You don't have to shovel. This is great. I love it. You know, honestly, I look up at the sky, I see maize, I see blue every day. I think we're in Big Ten country.

That's what I think. But I'm a Michigan guy. What the hell happened, Bruce? Walk me through this. What's going on?

What happened? I think really what you're seeing, Rich, in a big picture sense is two conferences, the SEC and the Big Ten, because they have the biggest TV power, have really pushed the rest of college football aside. And now it's like basically for whoever is out there, you are trying to say, you know what?

My conference probably isn't viable anymore, so I better jump in now or else I'll regret that I didn't. And in the case of USC, you had a lot of leverage, because obviously both USC and UCLA are just like to me, what I think is what what I think it needs to be underscored here, if it's not enough. People can talk about, OK, well, you know, the Big Ten has the New York media market because Rutgers is there. I mean, you and I both grew up in that area, not, you know, it's not Jetson Giants appeal there. USC and UCLA, I mean, especially USC people out here are all about it. Right.

And so I think that is different. You are you are bringing you bringing this big TV market into the Big Ten. You're also bringing iconic brands. I mean, when I show you the USC helmet, you know, UCLA uniforms, people recognize them.

I know those programs have not have not been ultra successful, you know, the last five years or even that successful last five years. But still, in terms of what they command and you do have a bunch of connections here because of the you know, it's ironic because I think the Rose Bowl is a subplot to this, what happens to it. But because of the Rose Bowl, because it's so many matchups between UCLA and USC and against against their, you know, Big Ten heavyweight counterparts, I think there is a lot of connection and it feels similar just like, you know, much more so than it would if you say, hey, USC is going to join the FCC and now they're in play in Mississippi State and Auburn. I mean, yeah, those schools have played, but it just doesn't, you know, have the same kind of connection where I feel like these are a little more like minded. Well, before we get into the into the ramifications and spin forward, I still want to I still want to linger in the how this happened. You say in most reports as well confirmed what I saw from you first, that the the two schools here in Los Angeles, USC and UCLA reached out to the Big Ten. It was their idea. And I imagine the Big Ten is like, okay, we're kind of negotiating our next television deal.

So you're telling me we can add a completely different time zone and the number two media market in the United States and America to add to leverage on top of what we're doing? Okay. I mean, I mean, that that had to happen, right? Like that that was the exchange.

And if so, if not, what did happen between these two sides? Yeah. Yeah. And I will be stand by reporting on that, that the schools out here were driving more than the in the Big Ten was initially on this. But again, as you said, with the TV deal coming up, this makes it that much sweeter.

Of course. You're taking these two schools, this huge market. The other thing it also does, if you're standing it with the Big Ten on this, is it expands their day out now in terms of you could basically have wall to wall from the time the first game kicks off. I don't think you'll see Big Ten after dark the way we've seen it, like, you know, it's going on at two a.m. back east. But I think you will see games now all of a sudden it's a lot more manageable. And also just from conversations I had in the past with Chip Kelly's head coach at UCI L.A., he was actually when when this was discussed two years ago, he was open to, hey, I'll, you know, I'll play 9 a.m. kickoff games.

Yet he didn't have he didn't have any qualms about his team having to do that. And so I think there's a lot of it's going to make a lot of sense because it's going to make a lot of money. And I think the thing is to kind of reckon, you know, recognize most on this is if USC did not leave, they were going to make, you know, a third, maybe a half of what Purdue was going to make or what Vanderbilt was going to make from their TV deals and from what they're what they were going to have revenue wise going forward. UCLA has been in a real hole financially.

This can solve a lot of those issues for them. I mean, now there's going to be some logistical challenges, no doubt from a travel standpoint, especially with the other non-revenue sports, but we're talking about so much cash coming in here and where it's going and especially with. You know, I think even if USC and UCLA stayed in the Pac-12, the Pac-12 was going to be hit so hard because they're going to be left behind even further by this, you know, by this new Big Ten TV deal that it, you know, I think it's just going to be a real uphill climb if you're not part of these two leagues being the Big Ten and the SEC. So is it possible before we start spinning forward here and fallout and ripple effects, is it possible Lincoln Riley knew that USC was considering moving to the Big Ten when he left the Big 12 and the boy, that's all you heard from Sooner fans is he's running from the competition. He doesn't want to play the SEC.

He wants to go to Southern California and beat up on Pac-12 teams. Well, that ain't happening now for him. So is it possible he did not know maybe, or he knew? I don't think it was this far back. I really don't. I don't think he knew that. I don't think this was, you know, something realistic. Somebody was going to say, hey, yeah, seven months from now, there's going to be a big, no, I don't, I don't buy that part of it. Did Lincoln Riley probably know seven days ago?

Yeah, I could, that I think. But like when he was in Norman, Oklahoma, after losing Bedlam's Oklahoma state, I don't think that part factored into it. You know, I really don't. I think, I think right now so much for him was like, hey, I want to go out to USC and let me see what I can do with this, you know, iconic program that has been down and you know, let's see where this works and it's a new challenge. I mean, look, it's going to be really interesting to see how technically, I mean, you know, his old school, Oklahoma, won't be playing in the SEC before his new school. It's crazy. He's going to be a Big Ten coach before, you know, before Oklahoma joins the SEC. It's that's, and that's kind of what's so crazy is how fast it's happened.

Unbelievable. I've got Bruce Feldman here on the Rich Eisen show. So ripple effects. The overarching question is what happens to the Pac-12 now and next, but I'm going to ask it to you in this manner. What's going on in Phil Knight's office right now, wherever he is, Bruce Feldman, what's happening with him?

Yeah, that is a good question. I mean, from what I had heard late last night was there, don't be that confident Oregon is going to the Big Ten ASAP, you know, immediately. Now to me, you know, on the surface of this, when I first heard her, I was like, okay, you have the two LA schools and then I was like, well, you have Washington and Oregon out there who are both also, you know, Oregon's Portland and obviously Washington and Seattle. Those are big media markets. They're good in a lot of sports as well. And then you have travel partners for, you know, like kind of a West Coast footprint, but I'm not sure it's lining up that way.

But again, Phil Knight's as big a heavy hitter as there is in global sports. Is he going to sit on the sidelines and let this school that he has built so much, and by the way, you know, he has invested so much in the NIL piece in the last year to make sure that Oregon is going to be a player and, you know, I'm going to try to make a run at it and help my beloved school make a run at a national title, you know, while I'm still alive. You know, but what happens to, where do they land?

I mean, do they stay in? There's going to be a much diminished Pac-12. There's no other way to look at it. The Pac-12 without USC and UCLA doesn't feel like the Pac-12 anymore. And I'm not saying it feels more like the Mountain West because you still have Oregon in there. You still have some really, really good football programs who've been successful, but it just doesn't have the same command. I don't know if there's another alternative potentially to partner up with the Big 12, which has already expanded. I mean, if I was the Big 12, I would probably be very intrigued by the idea of being able to bring in Phil Knight's school, Washington, you know, certainly try to get in Utah, which has been good and is connected to some of the new members there. I mean, there's some interesting dominoes here. Oregon's not the biggest domino, but because of Phil Knight, they're one of the most, certainly one of the two most intriguing dominoes that's still out there. No question, Bruce Feldman, because you want to talk about what potential bigger dominoes than Oregon might be.

There's Notre Dame, obviously all eyes on Clemson or whatever ACC alliance that needs to be held together in the ACC due to money. I think I read something that there is a clause in their television contracts. Right. It's a grant of rights. Now with the ACC, that it's a long-term deal and it's unwieldy. How well will that hold up in court?

I don't know for sure. Nobody feels that confident in that, but what's different is because Notre Dame is a partner in the other sports with the ACC, but my understanding is Notre Dame's grant of rights is not tied in with football and so it's a really, really small dollar figure that would not be prohibited for them. And I think if you're in Notre Dame, you know, they, you know, Big Ten's strong academic footprint. They're obviously geographically.

It makes a lot of sense. You have USC, which is your arch rival is already going there. The part that I think would be, you know, something to keep an eye on is when Greg Sankey, the FCC commissioner a couple of weeks back, you know, kind of made some rumblings about how well maybe we could have our own playoff just among FCC school. Now the idea that maybe the Big Ten and the FCC, the expanded Big Ten, the expanded FCC could have their own playoff, would have a lot more credibility now that you're basically looking at like 32, 35 schools. And I think that, yes, if you're a Clemson, if you're like the school that traditionally have won a lot of championships, Clemson, Miami, Florida State, they would be on the outside unless they either get brought into one of the other two, you know, SEC or Big Ten. So what I'm looking, what I'm wondering is, you know, Notre Dame has always had a seat at the table on the playoff. If Greg Sankey and Kevin Warren decided to say, hey, let's talk about our two leagues having this playoff potentially, is Notre Dame part of that if they're not part of, part of the year off, either the SEC or certainly the Big Ten?

My guess is they probably wouldn't have any reason to include them then. But that would be a driver to say, hey, Notre Dame. We know you have a lot of TV poll and we know you have a huge brand, we'd love to have you part of us.

Let's do it. Bruce Feldman here from the Athletic Fox Sports on the day after a seismic event happened in the world of college athletics, USC and UCLA, bolting for the Big Ten right here on the Rich Eisen Show. The reason why I brought up Phil Knight's name moments ago as well when it comes to what's going to happen to the Pac-12 and what's going to happen with Oregon, and that's a very big piece, is also because, the reason why I brought it up is because of this, look, you just mentioned how the Big Ten and the SEC might get together with a much larger group of member schools than what they currently have and say, let's do our own playoff and then there'll be other teams and schools left out and Oregon could be one of them, right? And the Big 12 could be left out and some of the ACC could be left out because they have to stick together for whatever legal and financial reasons into the next decade. So there's two entities in my mind that could get this all together, where everybody gets together and figures out who's in, who's out, and just lift the kimono or burn it completely, like I said yesterday on Yesterday Show upon the news of USC and UCLA. But this whole business of NCAA football, college football is now done. It's toast.

NIL is the accelerant. Everybody's moving around. Let's get together and figure out who's in, who's out, and what the playoffs is going to be. So there's two entities, the television entities, but I think there's too much competition amongst that. And Phil Knight. Phil Knight could be the guy who comes in and says, the money of shoes and money of jerseys.

A lot of these member schools are the ones who run to Nike to say, we want to switch to you, right? So he could make something like this happen as well, don't you think? Or am I off? Because this is the way it's going to go. Who's going to make sure it happens?

I don't know on that, honestly on the latter part. The one thing when you said there were two entities, and I say this preface it by the caveat of I work at Fox Sports in addition to the athletics, but there are two entities right now. The SEC is largely ESPN right now, and the Big Ten, the Big Ten network has obviously ... Fox. ... it's Fox. So the big two TV entities, if that is something... Obviously the companies work together in a draft when it comes to sorting out how the TV schedule gets sorted out. Yes.

I don't want to jump way ahead, but when you were talking about there's two entities that could do that, those are the two entities. That's not to say that there aren't other broadcast partners, CBS is losing the SEC, and there's obviously all these other now... We've obviously seen Amazon get into the NFL. We'll see where some of these other emerging broadcast outlets are going to show up. But that's where the money is, right? And I don't want to discount Phil Knight and Nike's influence, maybe you're right, maybe there's some truth to that, but I think it's like the TV dollars as it relates to football, the thing that when the last round of big expansion happened, which was about a decade ago, one thing it was underscored or hammered home to people. You know, like you and I, we grew up in the Northeast, college, basketball, March Madness was a big, big deal back then, and it's not to say it doesn't matter at all, but it's football, college football, that drives all the money and drives all the movement. And as long as that's the case, and as long as that's happening, there are going to be people who are going to look at the playoff, and it's becoming a lot more like the NFL. It is.

There's no way around it. That's how it is. Bruce, like if you get, as I mentioned yesterday, right, if you get, let's say the Big Ten currently has what they've got with UCLA and USC, that's 16 teams, right? Correct? That's right. Let's say you get four more. You say the AFC-NFC basically? Yes. The SEC is the AFC, and the Big Ten is the NFC. You get 40 teams, or you could even jack it up where each division has seven teams in it, so 20, 50, six teams, and that's college football, and one side has its own playoffs, the other side has its own playoffs, and they meet in the college Super Bowl. This is the way it's going to go.

NIL is like that, is the accelerant. You pour, you spray on your grill or your barbecue that hasn't really sparked yet, but the coals are already burning. This is happening. I mean, it's clearly going to happen. The question is, is when, and who's going to be the entity that puts it together? If it's a college football playoff committee, if it is in the offices of Bristol, Connecticut, in Los Angeles, California, of ESPN and Fox, or Phil Knight's coming in, somebody's going to put it together. The question is, is how much of poaching is going to happen before the momentum gets us there? That's what I'm thinking, Bruce.

Yeah. The other thing that ties into this is there's been so much hand-wringing over how NIL is playing out in terms of just the wild, wild west. I think there's a lot of people inside the sport who would prefer some, I don't want to use the term guardrails because that was an MGA term, but some kind of leadership on this because the MGA has completely abdicated leadership. If you had that kind of entity emerging to manage the playoff, and I'm not talking about how the CFP does it because that's kind of a clown show. I think there would have to be something, but right now what you have in the sport, and it's interesting because it was about 11 months ago that the Texas and Oklahoma stuff happened, and it was just this crazy end run, and it felt like there was a lot of betrayal amongst the conference commissioners who are aligned, and then there was this alliance forum, and we've seen that, but it's just kind of a joke. I think if you're going to get to where you're talking about, Rich, and I don't doubt that that could happen way down the road, but I think the partners here need to really, it's almost like they need to put their guns on the table, and I don't feel like we're that close to that happening, that part of it.

Okay, Bruce Feldman, before I let you go, what happens next, do you think? We wait to see other shoes drop with the rest of the Pac-12 because there are some terrific programs there. I mean, Cal, Stanford sitting up there in San Francisco, that's a hell of a market too, and I'm sure the Big Ten school presidents and chancellors would love to add Stanford and Cal Berkeley to the mix academically as well for sure, so what's happening? What's next do you think?

I would circle Notre Dame first, see how motivated Notre Dame can become. I think they're intrigued. I don't think there's anything imminent with them, but then all of a sudden it's like okay, what kind of pitches and what kind of, you know, I mean, because they're in a different space, and I don't think it's cost prohibitive for them to get untangled from the ACC if it comes to that, then I think there are the other, there's a handful of ACC programs that have some attractiveness. Miami's in a big market.

There's obviously a strong brand there. Florida State has had success. North Carolina has, obviously, you know, is an iconic basketball brand, and I think that those, you mentioned Clemson before. You know, I don't know if Clemson and Florida State see themselves as more potentially aligned with, you know, in line with the FCC than they do with the Big Ten.

I think those are interesting questions. You know, there's always been the rumblings about well, Florida wouldn't want FSU or Miami in the FCC. I mean, Texas A&M may not have wanted Texas in the FCC, but it's happened, or it's happening, and I think there's a lot of those kinds of questions that need to get sorted out. Now, as I said with the ACC schools that are not Notre Dame, that are full-fledged members, the grant of rights as it relates to, they did a long-term, unwieldy, kind of what feels like an underwhelming TV deal, and I don't know how boxed in they are, you know, on that. So you know, to me, Oregon is probably, you know, in a lot of ways is kind of a wild card because of Phil Knight, for one, because they've had a lot of success and they've elevated their brand, but also because right now they're in a league that feels like it is so, I don't want to say it's fallen apart into non-existence, but it is on such shaky ground and it is so diminished to where it was, you know, 24 hours ago, I think it's not sensible for them to stay if they have other choices. Wow. Bruce, I'm going to run the risk of asking for two more minutes here, because I'm sure your phone's blowing up, but in the couple minutes that I'm asking for, how did Texas win the Arch Manning sweepstakes?

Best you can tell me, Bruce. You know, Steve Sarkeesian has a really good reputation as an offensive mind and for working with quarterbacks and receivers. I think that school did a really good job of getting Arch comfortable. He, you know, like, I think like all of these boys, you know, whether it's Peyton wanting to go to Tennessee or, you know, like not, and then Eli not wanting to follow his, his big brother, I think, and go end up going to Ole Miss where it's dead land, I think in the case of here, you have somebody going, you know what, this is, it feels different. It feels like this could be a really good opportunity. I think the interesting thing with this is already a kind of big ripple effect with other recruits who jumped in board because Arch Manning has committed to Texas and now some, some big time receivers have decided I want to go play with them.

And so we'll see how much better Texas can get before they get to the FCC. Pretty wild stuff, huh, Bruce? Isn't that crazy? 10 days ago, Arch Manning was still deciding where he was going and USC and UCLA were still Pac-12 teams past 2023.

I mean, unbelievable world we're living in, you know. Never a dull moment. Thanks. Thanks for the time, Bruce Feldman. Greatly appreciate it. Let's, let's chat throughout the summer. Thank you, sir. Sounds good.

You got it. Let's chat about it here on The Rich Eisen Show. Let's take a break. We'll take some phone calls. And I mean, I have so many thoughts about what happens next in the ripple effects and how we're going to have to get used to what's going on.

So many thoughts in my head. And then we've got Goldberg, by the way, joining this program in the middle of the next hour right here on The Rich Eisen Show. Back here on our program, Kathy in Philadelphia. Let's take her phone call. What's up, Kathy? Hey, Salas. How's it going?

What's up, Kathy? A couple of quick things first, I think we need to recognize that the presentation of Lord Stanley's Cup is the best presentation of a championship in all sport. So we should maybe think about giving it to the team captain in all other sports as opposed to the team owner.

But that's not here. Well, the NFL, just as an aside, the NFL's head of events for a long period of time was a gentleman who I loved working with. Frank Sapovitz was his name, and he came from the NHL and he brought the idea to the table of taking the, how lately the Lombardi Trophy brought in to the stadium after the Super Bowl is over by an all time great to essentially take the trophy and hand it off to the team that's just won it. They tried to bring a lot of Stanley Cup style hoopla to the presentation of the Lombardi Trophy, and I think it's kind of worked out, so I'm just throwing that out there, just trying to cape for the NFL for a second.

What's going on with your mind, Kathy, the other one? My main reason for calling is the new potential realignments of all the conferences in college football. And obviously they're gearing towards making the NCAA overall obsolete, but there are things that they can take from the NCAA that would work and make it a better product overall, like how they do with the NIT with basketball, so that we don't have a regular season game between Oregon and Stony Brook that no one wants to watch because we know it's going to be a blowout, but you have the lesser teams, for lack of a better word, still have the opportunity to have the same bells and whistles as the power conferences do. But this also presents an opportunity for a happy compromise for the Rich Eisenshaus. Ah! What might that be? Well, instead of T.J. being from the East Coast, what if T.J. was a member of the Big East? Oh! Well, I would gladly accept that. Right?

In that way, it doesn't matter where he's actually from, or where he is now, because this is where he calls home. Well, great idea, Kathy. Thank you very much. I like Kathy's stuff. What do you think?

You like that stuff? Look, Kathy makes an interesting point right there. And by the way, it's a rare phone call where she doesn't troll on me, which is great. Kathy makes an interesting point.

She did? That when you put together a super conference and this super league that's coming, the homecoming games, if you will, the figurative homecoming games are going to become fewer and far between. And that serves the fans, I think. That I don't know how the Big Ten is going to do this, but the nine Big Ten games that Michigan let's say is playing this year, I've got their schedule for this year, here are the nine teams that they're playing in the Big Ten. Maryland, Iowa, Indiana, Penn State, Michigan State, Rutgers, Nebraska, Illinois, and Ohio State.

That's who they got. No Wisconsin on the schedule. I guess they can't play them every year.

But there you have it. Those are the nine games. Imagine removing Maryland, with all due respect, or Rutgers, Illinois, imagine removing either one of those two teams and inserting, or three of those teams, inserting UCLA, USC, and Oregon. And having to do the same, obviously, similarly for Ohio State, Penn State.

Just imagine that happening. That's a difficult schedule, would you say? Yay? Nay?

Very tough. But how many more times will somebody tune in nationally in Los Angeles to watch USC Michigan, UCLA Michigan, as opposed to any of those fans out there rooting from Champaign Urbana? Okay? I'm just throwing it out, with all due respect, to those teams in the Big Ten. I should have said that in advance. That's what's coming. That's what's coming.

And I will say this, too. You know, same thing with the SEC. And the Vanderbilts of the world and those guys, they better start beefing up. Because I'm wondering if they get relegated out. I don't know if that's the other part of this, is that you poached the big teams from the other schools.

Is it possible that somebody loses their charter membership to make room? Wow, you gotta keep the cupcakes. Gotta have the guaranteed wins on the schedule. Do you? Kind of.

Okay. Because I imagine you're still gonna have out of conference games. I mean, Michigan's three out of conference games this year. Colorado State, Hawaii, and our friend Jim Moore told us, you know, UConn's coming. Oh yeah.

Right? Like, that's it? It's like a 50, 60 team, you know, super two conferences. What's the need for out of... What's the schedule? I don't know what the... What do you need out of conference for? You don't. You do not.

That's the live tour aspect of it. Yeah. Okay? Because your champion is coming from one of these teams.

It's right. You don't need any more competition. Nobody's coming in. Nobody's making a cut. Nobody's getting cut. Everybody's in there. I'm imagining, unless there's some relegation, you're out and somebody who's out of this super conference gets to play in. You know?

I'm sure Prime would raise his hand and say, how about us? How about me down here? We should get... I should, you know, get into this Super League too.

Don't forget. I mean, this thing is just starting right now. And I feel like, you know, we're just beginning to talk it out and scratch the surface here. You know, just beginning to talk it out.

That's really interesting. Because like I said earlier, too, with Bruce Feldman, the TV is going to drive it, again. Could you imagine you're Kevin Warren of the Big Ten? You're the commissioner, right?

And you get a call from somebody who's representing UCLA and USC together saying, I got both of these schools. You know, these conversations that we've kind of been going around the edges the last few weeks and months. Well, we're ready to move now. What about you?

And he's sitting here going, hmm, I'm negotiating my new television deal. And I can add both schools out west in the number two market in the United States where the Big Ten already has a footprint because we play the Rose Bowl there, okay? So it's not totally out of whack. And I get to call up the school presidents and chancellors and say, what do you think of adding those two schools academically? What do you think about the film school at USC now being a Big Ten thing? What do you think about that? What do you think about making Los Angeles a Big Ten country?

What do you think about that? Then apparently he had to assuage some of the schools like Rutgers and Maryland saying, hey, man, we'll figure out how to get your teams all the way across the country and vice versa. They must have been like, hell yeah. Hell yeah. And if I'm the Big Ten representing it, the next phone calls I make are to Cal and Stanford.

You want to come too? Because those academic institutions, you want to make Stanford a Big Ten school and Cal Berkeley a Big Ten school? That fits. That fits because Stanford and Cal Berkeley in a way kind of split the title of being the Michigan of the West Coast.

Oh, this is going to be just so great. You caught that one. I mean, like I said last week, I went to Michigan. I'm just saying there are so many possibilities because the SEC is not going to, I mean, the fact that the Big Ten has now got a West Coast footprint. Is the SEC going to now say to Oregon and Washington, how would you like to come down to Mississippi State and play games?

Yep. Might be a better fit for the Big Ten though. For the real story behind some of wrestling's biggest moments, it's something to wrestle with Bruce Prichard and Conrad Thompson too. All-time Hogan opponents, Macho Man's got to be in the conversation. Where's Andre for you? I've always said Andre was number one. Wow. Going back before Hulk Hogan was a babyface, Hulk and Andre were able to go in and headline at the New Orleans Superdome, at Shea Stadium in Japan. Wherever they went, that was an attraction. Something to wrestle with Bruce Prichard. Listen wherever you get your podcasts.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-05 00:33:43 / 2023-02-05 00:54:46 / 21

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