Canzano: Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yormark sounds off
Exclusive interview on "Canzano & Wilner: The Podcast"
Big 12 Conference Commissioner Brett Yormark is an interesting figure in the college football ecosystem. He joined “Canzano & Wilner: The Podcast” on Wednesday for an exclusive interview.
Yormark is a salesman. He’s always selling. I don’t mean that as a slap. It’s just who he is. The commissioner has done an ambitious job of selling the Big 12 since being hired last summer.
In a 35-minute interview, Yormark talked about the Big 12’s media rights deal, what he values in potential expansion candidates, and his conference’s ongoing spat with the Pac-12. He also talked about the Super Bowl, the value of college basketball and the early departure of Texas and Oklahoma from his conference, among other topics.
A few of the questions:
Did the Big 12 leave money on the table by negotiating its media rights deal early?
“Certainly didn’t leave any money on the table. As you’re reading, now the media landscape is changing. The media companies are focused on what they need vs. what they want. It’s a changing landscape… we strategized and we looked at the landscape. We looked at who was going to be in the market the same time. When I was in Phoenix (for the Super Bowl) everyone was there talking to the media partners. I mean, think about UFC being out there right now, the NBA, CFP, WWE, it’s a crowded space right now. By going early, I was able to gain the attention of two of the biggest media brands in the world… for all the right reasons we went early and I think that decision today is looking better and better.”
On whether the Big is targeting Pac-12 schools for expansion:
“I’m not targeting anyone specifically. I’ve been saying it. I’ve been pretty transparent and intentional that we’d like that fourth time zone to create more value for our media partners… would I like to be a national conference in all the different time zones and from a geography standpoint have our Big 12 flag all over the country? 100 percent… we’ll see where we end up.”
On the fighting between the Pac-12 and Big 12:
“I just want to kind of go on the record — no one is fighting. I have a great relationship with (Pac-12 commissioner) George (Kliavkoff). We have a collegial relationship. I’ve known George for years. I believe in this industry that you can partner with all your colleagues for all the right reasons but at the same time know that from time to time you’re going to compete. And that’s the world we live in. That’s the world I came from… I look to partner with all of my colleagues in the Power Five as often as I can and when the opportunity exists but there is going to be those moments when we compete. That’s just life. We’re not going after the Pac-12. The Pac-12’s not going after us. George and I have a good relationship. The media has turned it into something different.”
On the value of college basketball in media rights and expansion:
“I do feel basketball is undervalued in this industry… I just think it’s undervalued. It’s been bundled with football. I think at some point in time that value proposition needs to change. And obviously, I speak to that from a position of strength because we are the No. 1 conference in America when you think about college basketball. I think at the right time we’re going to be able to monetize that.”
Yormark said a lot more.
Listen to the full interview yourself on SoundCloud and Apple Podcasts:
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At the end of the day 65-7 is still 65-7 and I don’t see any of the remaining big 12 teams (excluding OK and TX) sniffing at the upper echelon of recruiting rankings. In order to break the SEC stranglehold on the sport that’s what’s required. Clemson has the template. I really think some sort of PAC ACC alignment would be enormously beneficial to both and media friendly on that front.
Sorry John, Yormark is a worm! I wouldn’t believe anything he says or trust him in any way!!