Report: UT, A&M, OU said no to equal revenue in spring

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Last week, two members of the Big 12 — Missouri and Oklahoma — ironically announced conflicting reports of equally sharing first and second-tier TV rights following a teleconference on, of all things, future stability.

“A six-year grant of rights — of our television rights, Tier 1 and Tier 2 — was agreed to by all the institutions’ presidents,” said OU president David Boren at his press conference.

“[The Big 12 Board of Directors has] affirmed its intention to pursue the granting of media rights,” Mizzou chancellor Brady Deaton said independently.

Oops.

Turns out, that may not be the first time the two schools have disagreed on granting first and second-tier media rights revenue to the conference. Dave Matter of the Columbia Daily Tribune writes that Texas, Texas A&M and Oklahoma all rejected the idea of equal revenue sharing last spring, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.

Revenue from the conference’s current first-tier deal with ABC/ESPN is based on TV appearances. As you’ll recall from our post back in April over the announcement of the second-tier TV deal with FOX, Texas, Texas A&M and Oklahoma were on the top end of the unequal revenue model.

Coincidentally (I think not), those three schools have since either left the Big 12 (A&M), or have looked to pursue other options (despite what OU says).

It was reported several weeks back the Texas had come around to the idea of equal revenue sharing in an effort to save the Big 12, but that Oklahoma hadn’t announced their intentions on the matter one way or the other.

Under Big 12 bylaws, it would have taken eight votes out of 10 Big 12 Board of Directors (at least 75 percent) to pass the policy last spring. However, Matter writes that the idea never even reached an official vote, as there was prior disagreement on the terms of the proposal.

“Obviously, getting something like that done would have shown a commitment by the member schools,” the source told the Tribune.

Instead, the Big 12 has now lost three members in the past year with another, Missouri, still headlining the rumor mill over possible back channel discussions with the SEC. Is it too late for the Big 12? That’s still to be determined, but it’s painfully obvious equal revenue sharing is non-negotiable — in other words, a must — if the conference is to survive.