Nicco’s Red Zone Blog




Columnist at hookemreport
Nicco Martinez, an Austin native, started covering sports in 1979 and has not since slowed down his love affair with playing, coaching, and writing about sports. He has written articles on both the Cowboys and Longhorns spanning 5 decades. HOW BOUT DEM COWBOYS!!

Longhorn TV Station
Nicco’s Red Zone Blog
By Nicco Martinez
Featured author at Hook’em Report and Silver and Blue Report

Yes, I’ve checked and when you combine the $15 million annual average with all the other real and projected revenues from the Big 12 conference TV contracts and possible bowl game dollars, Texas’ revenue would be more than twice that of any SEC school!!

When 2016 rolls around and the Big 12 TV contract is up, it means Texas calls the shots more than ever. Texas can maintain a Big 12 stay, move to the Pac 12, Big 10, or SEC, or become an Independent. As an Independent, we could work a BCS deal as sweet, (probably sweeter,) than Notre Dame. And with the SEC schools stuck in their TV contract through 2022, those schools aren’t closing the money gap any time soon.

And with all this, I’m now going to balk on the deal. The deal is just too long and not smart money. Initially, we thought a 10-year deal from ESPN would be awesome, now they offer 20-years. Hmmm.

Ask yourself, what was the cost of living 20 years ago in 1991?

How much was a head coach paid in 1991? Or in 2001?

Compare the salary of a head coach in 1991 to the salary in 2011?

How much did TV networks/contracts pay colleges in 1991?

How much did airfare, hotels, meals, uniforms, scholarships (tuition, room, board, books) cost in 1991?

That was 20 years ago. It’s now 2011, imagine what those costs are going to be in 2031????? OUCH!

Being offered $300 mil sounds great but in 20 years, I do not believe it will sound so great. It would not surprise me if in 20 years, if a few top conferences and top schools will have better deals in place without even having their own network.

Believing the SEC deal will be renegotiated in 2022, then I would propose that Texas accept a 12-year deal at $12-15 mil per year ($150-180 million total) because it offers two things:

[1] we are not locked in to a 20-year deal, which is a LONG time period. think about it, CNNSi launched it’s own sports TV station in 1996 and then shut it down in 2002. A lot happens in 20 years . . . Thirty-two year-old ESPN, itself, was only 12 years old in 1991.

[2] it allows us to not only renegotiate and allow for unforeseen increases in both inflation and brand value but more importantly, a 12-year deal allows us to renegotiate a new deal one year after the SEC re-works their new deal in 2022. The SEC deal would be our template for working a deal using current 2023 dollars, instead of stuck in a deal using 2011 dollars.

By asking for a deal of a shorter length, it’s betting the house that the continuance of winning games will be achieved. But I submit that a deal in the $150-180 million/12-year range turns Texas into the college version of the NY Yankees, and that alone will keep Bevo competitive. (As if we’re not the Yankees already.) Heck, I’d ink a $150 mil/12-yr deal before making a $300mil/20-yr deal because the amount dollars that I envision will be swirling around in the year 2023 could easily be in the $23-to-27-million-per-year range when a deal could be locked in next decade. And that’s a lot of money we would never see on the backhalf of the proposed ESPN contract that spans two decades.

ESPN Proposed Deal:

$300 million for 20 years (2011-2031)


Nicco’s Deal:

$150 million for 12 years

PLUS $294 million for 12 years

= $444 million over 24 years (2011-2035).


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