A-+paper - Case #2 – The Big Ten Whitney Allison Sweeney...

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Unformatted text preview: Case #2 – The Big Ten Whitney Allison Sweeney Doehring Chris Eisenlohr Paula Mendoza Elyse Munselle MGMT 466-502 Executive Summary The Big Ten conference is the oldest Division I conference, and it has historically been one of the most successful ones. Since the addition of an eleventh team to the conference in 1990, conference management has considered adding an additional team. The benefits of having twelve teams rather than eleven include better scheduling and greater income. Important factors to consider include athletic performance in men’s basketball and football, the two sports that bring in the most revenue, and academic standards, including membership in the AAU. Other factors include location relative to the other Big Ten uUniversities, willingness to accept an offer, and TV deals and other items that may further influence income. While there are many possibilities, we feel that the University of Pittsburg is the best choice for a new member into the conference. Other options include the University of Missouri, Iowa State University, Vanderbilt University, and Notre Dame University. While some of these schools may have qualities that the conference is looking for, Pittsburgh best fits all of the requirements. While some may be unwilling to leave their conference or their independence from a conference, others are not as attractive picks as Pittsburgh. Pitt is ideally located, and it would give the Big Ten access to a large television audience, therefore bringing in more money. It would lead to better scheduling and potentially more championships. Pitt would most likely be willing to accept the offer, as it would benefit them to join a strong football conference like The Big Ten. The Big Ten “The Big Ten conference is a union of eleven world-class academic institutions who share a common mission of research, graduate, professional, and undergraduate teaching, and public service1.” Founded in 1896, the Big Ten is the oldest Division I college athletic conference in the United States. The name of this conference has not always been the Big Ten. It was first called The Intercollegiate Conference of Faculty Representatives, and it did not formally adopt the Big Ten name until 1987, when it was incorporated as a not-for-profit organization. The conference prides itself on the membership of schools who are both academically and athletically excellent. In fact, nine of the eleven conference schools are considered “Public Ivies,” a term referring to universities which provide an Ivy League collegiate experience at a public school price. The schools that make up the Big Ten conference are The University of Illinois, Indiana University, The University of Iowa, They University of Michigan, Michigan State University, The University of Minnesota, Northwestern University, Ohio State University, Pennsylvania State University, Purdue University, and The University of Wisconsin. The eleven member schools are located mainly in the Midwestern United States. All of these universities compete in football and men and women’s basketball. Most of them are also strong contenders in baseball, cross country, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, track and field, rowing, men and women’s soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, volleyball, and wrestling. The position of Commissioner of Athletics was founded in 1922, which was led by the Big Ten’s first commissioner, Major John L. Griffith. The current commissioner, James Delaney, has been serving in this role since 1989. Under his leadership, the Big Ten has won over 60 NCAA, BCS, or national championships in 20 sports. He also had a hand in the addition of Penn State to the conference, and he has seen many changes and growths since the beginning of his term as commissioner2. 1 bigten.cstv.com 1 2 bigten.cstv.com 2 The Big Ten Conference has recently considered expansion from eleven to twelve teams. While there are many factors to be considered in the choice for a twelfth team, there are five main teams that stand out as obvious possibilities. When evaluating what school will best fit the academic and athletic standards and culture of the Big Ten conference, it is important to take into consideration all of the determining factors. An impressive record in both basketballbasketball and football, the two sports that generate the most revenue from television airtime and ticket sales, is an obvious necessity. However, the Big Ten considers itself to be an academic conference as much as an athletic one, and it feels strongly about adding a university who is a fellow member of the Association of American Universities3. The five possible universities that most closely match the conference’s requirements are The University of Missouri, Iowa State University, Vanderbilt University, Notre Dame University, and The University of Pittsburgh. The University of Missouri from the Big Twelve conference is an attractive prospect for several reasons. First, it is an established football and basketball school in the Big Twelve. The SAPR or student athlete performance rating is 66 for football and 72 for basketball. The SAPR is a rating formula that helps athletes select universities based on both athletic achievement and academic performance4. These scores suggest competitive athletics programs, and they are appealing due to the potential for increased overall strength of schedule for Big Ten. It is ideally located for its close proximity to several Big Ten schools, and it meets the Big Ten’s geographic requirement that a school must border or be in a state that currently holds a Big Ten school. There are also several monetary incentives for both Missouri and the Big Ten. First, the Big Ten would receive a coveted twelfth team thus allowing for a lucrative championship game every season. Missouri would benefit from a more generous bowl profit sharing program that allots proceeds to all of the Big Ten and by making more games available to be viewed by fans. Although these factors make Missouri an attractive offer, integration difficulties exist in the fact that Missouri is already attached to the Big Twelve conference, and any attempts to pull Missouri 3 w ww.rivalryesq.com 3 4 bestschoolsforathletes.org 4 into the Big Ten must weigh the fallout of pulling them away from another competitive conference. Iowa State University is another potential prospect form the Big Twelve. The football and basketball SAPR are 58 and 215, respectively5. These scores alone make it a less attractive prospect than Missouri. However, its long standing rivalry with Iowa is a valuable asset that cannot be overlooked. Iowa State is also already in a state that is a part of the Big Ten conference, meaning it meets the geographic requirement. Economically, it would make sense for Iowa State to want to join the Big Ten, as it is not as profitable as Missouri or other Big Twelve powerhouses. Thus, the university would most likely jump at the opportunity to join a conference where it could substantially benefit from the Big Ten bowl profit sharing program6. Also, the opportunity to recruit and compete in its own region is an appealing switch for Iowa State. It currently attempts to compete for athletes in Texas and Oklahoma, where more established schools have a firmer recruiting basis. These factors make integration difficulties less severe for Iowa State as the university has several reasons to join the Big Ten on its own accord. However, they also make Iowa State a less attractive choice for the conference, as it may not be as big of an asset as the other universities. The lone consideration from the SEC is Vanderbilt University. However, it fails the initial geographic requirement and thus is not a viable candidate for acceptance into the Big Ten conference. It seems as that if the Big Ten is looking to make a presence in a new region, that Missouri would be a better option for entry into the South, based on school size. Also, Vanderbilt is a part of a very competitive conference, and like Missouri in the Big Twelve12, it would face severe integration difficulties if it were ever to be considered for acceptance. 5 bestschoolsforathletes.org 5 6 w ww2.indystar.com 6 At first glance, Notre Dame would seem to be a perfect fit into the Big Ten community. With an SAPR rating of 23 in football and 22 in men’s basketball7, its athletic standards are only the beginning of its appeal to the Big Ten. In a recent article8, Michael Rosenburg calls Notre Dame “the biggest name in college football.” It already plays three of the Big Ten schools and is even considered a rival for schools such as Michigan. One obstacle is that Notre Dame is not a member of the Association of American Universities9, although its academic standards are consistently well above average. Another attraction to this university, which is currently unaffiliated with any conference, is its television contracts. From the Big Ten’s point of view, this exposure and inflow or revenue is extremely appealing. Commissioner Delaney stated that “adding a twelfth team likely will be revisited…an additional big-name university in a large television market means more exposure for the network and its sponsors. The broader the network is distributed, the more value expansion has10.” However, from Notre Dame’s point of view, this may be precisely what holds them back from accepting an offer, whether it is from the Big Ten or any other conference. The University of Pittsburgh has one of the larger television markets out of the possible new members, which makes it a prime nominee for invitation into the conference. Founded in 1787 on what was then the American frontier, Pittsburgh is one of the oldest continuously chartered institutions of higher education in the United States11. Its close proximity also makes it 7 bestschoolsforathletes.org 7 8 msn.foxsports.com 8 9 w ww.aau.edu 9 10 w ww.usatoday.com, Peterson 1 11 w ww.pitt.edu 1 a potentially valuable member. Its SAPR rankings are 34 for football and 41 for basketball12, and both teams are consistently competitive. The Pitt Panthers currently participate in Big East Conference. In a recent all-sports ranking done by Sports Illustrated on campus, Pitt was ranked 17th among all U.S. universities considering the overall strength of its athletic program13. A report by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education called the undergraduate programs at Pitt, an AAU member, “impressive in their variety, strength, and fundamental soundness14.” Based solely on an analysis of who would be the best fit for the conference, there is no question that Notre Dame stands out in front of all the other candidates. However, it is our recommendation that Pittsburgh University be extended an offer to join the Big Ten based on the following two factors: Pitt closely adheres to our standards used to evaluate potential universities, and there is overwhelming evidence that suggests that Notre Dame will not be willing to join the conference. There is far too much evidence to imply that Notre Dame would not be willing to give up their independent status to join the Big Ten. Conference affiliating would not be economically advantageous to the university for several reasons. According to a USA Today article15, Notre Dame receives around seven million dollars annually for its television deal with NBC, which guarantees them at least six televised home games a season. The Big Ten shares all of its television revenues, and without the exclusive access to NBC, Notre Dame would have to compete for television time with the rest of the Big Ten schools. This would give them less 12 bestschoolsforathletes.org 1 13 w ww.pittsburghpanthers.cstv.com 1 14 w ww.pitt.edu 1 15 w ww.usatoday.com, Mar tske, Moran 1 publicity, in turn hindering recruiting, and it would result in the Notre Dame receiving less revenue overall. This is also true for bowl games. According to an article16, Notre Dame is guaranteed a BCS berth if it completes its season with nine or more wins or finishes in the top eight in the BCS standings. In the USA today article by O’Toole, he states that although participating universities are awarded $17 million for participation in a BCS game, revenue sharing usually gives about $2 million to each university in the conference17. Because of its agreement with the BCS, Notre Dame is guaranteed $4.5 million for a BCS berth, another strong incentive for them to stay independent. Several other factors often surface in this discussion, including Notre Dame’s desire to maintain its distinctiveness as a university, and their ability to pick and choose its own opponents. However, the bottom line remains that Notre Dame turned down the Big Ten’s offer in 1999, and will not be willing to conference affiliate in the near future. When the stipulation of acceptance is added to this discussion, the University of Pittsburgh becomes the ideal candidate for addition to the Big Ten. According to multiple sources, it is explicitly stated in the Big Ten bylaws that a university joining the Big Ten must be at least adjacent to the home state of a current Big Ten school. Pittsburgh meets this requirement, as well as enriches the Big Ten football presence in Pennsylvania. This would give the Big Ten access to the large television audience of Pittsburgh and the Northeast, and would also create a marquee in-state rivalry between Pitt and Penn State. Also, as mentioned earlier, the Big 10 prides itself on being an academic conferences as well as an athletic conference. All of the current Big 10 members are a part of the AAU, an invitation only group of universities who meet high standards for research and academics. Pitt also is a member of the AAU18 and would culturally mesh well as a respected research and academic institution. Probably the most 16 w ww.collegefootballpoll.com 1 17 w ww.usatoday.com, O’Toole 1 18 w ww.aau.edu 1 important selling point, however, is the fact that Pitt would be highly willing to accept an offer. Pitt, currently a member of the Big East Conference, would benefit by leaving the weak football conference and joining the formidable Big Ten. With the departure of Virginia Tech and Miami in recent years to the ACC, the Big East has fallen out of the national spotlight and has struggled in recent years to field nationally competitive football teams. With the Pitt football program on the rise, and the Pitt basketball program already nationally established, entry into the Big Ten would help create national attention for the Pitt football program, as well as allow for the Pitt basketball program to stand out more than in the highly competitive Big East basketball league. Because of the above reasons, we recommend that Pitt be extended an offer to join the Big Ten, allowing for the creation of two divisions as well as hosting a lucrative conference title game. Since the beginning, The Big Ten conference has been a strong organization of highprofile universities with dependable athletic records, prestigious academic standards, and consistently revenue-generating seasons. It has continued to see success in championship wins and leadership. In adding a twelfth university to such a strong conference, it is important to take into consideration many different factors. The University of Pittsburgh’s impressive athletic records and excellence in academics make it a great fit for The Big Ten. Instructor comments: This is an excellent analysis of the situation offered to you. This was very thorough in the developing and analyzing the interests of the most important stakeholders. Unfortunately, there is a dearth of context that is needed to fit this paper in the context of class. Therefore, with the minor grammar and punctuation error, your grade earned is a 94%. Works Cited "BCS Explained, Bowl Championship Series". College Football Poll. <http://www.collegefootballpoll.com/bcs_explained.html>. Big Ten Conference Official Athletic Site. <http://bigten.cstv.com/>. Filler, Graham. "Who should the Big 10's twelfth team be? ". <http://www.rivalryesq.com/2008/10/22/640888/part-1-who-should-the-big>. Lucas, Jeffrey. "Can Academic Progress Help Collegiate Football Teams Win?". <http://bestschoolsforathletes.org/articles.htm>. Martzke, Rudy. Moran, Malcolm. "NBC, Notre Dame stretch grid deal through 2010". USA Today. < http://www.usatoday.com/sports/college/football/independents/2003-12-18-nbc-notre dame_x.htm >. "NCAA Financial Reports Database". IndyStar. <http://www2.indystar.com/NCAA_financial_reports/revenue_stat/show>. O'Toole, Thomas. "$17M BCS payouts sound great, but ...". USA Today. <http://www.usatoday.com/sports/college/football/2006-12-06-bowl-payouts_x.htm>. Peterson, Randy. "Big Ten Network has conference thinking expansion — again". Des Moines Register. <http://www.usatoday.com/sports/college/football/bigten/2007-07-25-network expansion_N.htm>. "Pitt on Cover of Sports Illustrated College Basketball Preview Issue ". University of Pittsburgh Official Athletic Site. <http://pittsburghpanthers.cstv.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/111108aaa.html>. Rosenberg, Michael. "Rivalries rule (if you know who they are)". Fox Sports on MSN. <http://msn.foxsports.com/cfb/story/8807798/Rivalries-rule-(if-you-know-who-they-are)>. ...
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2011 for the course BUS 342 taught by Professor Jamessmith during the Spring '10 term at Akademia Ekonomiczna w Poznaniu.

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A-+paper - Case #2 – The Big Ten Whitney Allison Sweeney...

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