Canzano: What I learned over the weekend... about the Pac-12 and more
Monday musings for you.
What I learned over the weekend…
• Pac-12 Conference Commissioner George Kliavkoff told me that the conference has “begun the process of engagement in our next media rights deal.” He said every decision the Pac-12 makes right now is viewed, “through the filter of what this would do to the value of media rights long term.”
• Be sure, the Pac-12 noticed when Major League Soccer inked a 10-year deal with Apple. Kliavkoff told me, however, it’s more likely than not that the Pac-12’s Tier 1 rights will continue to be distributed on linear television. Keep an eye on Apple TV app as a possible destination for the balance of content you now mostly see on the Pac-12 Network.
• The MLS deal with Apple was met with mixed reviews in some circles. There will be no blackouts and the new revenue generated is a massive shot in the arm for the league. But some local fans are miffed that the regional flavor of the games — called by team-centric broadcast crews — is being sacrificed. On Sunday, a high-ranking MLS source put that to rest. He told me that fans in each market will have the ability to choose to watch the video of the games on Apple TV, but select a synced simulcast of the local radio broadcast. Feels like a win to me.
• Former Oregon Ducks defensive backs Anthony Newman and Alex Molden highlighted panel discussions on Sunday at the inaugural Worlds of Sport event at the Oregon Convention Center. Molden played eight NFL seasons, something only two percent of players in the league achieve. Newman played 12 seasons, putting him in the top-one percent of pro players. They discussed getting to… staying in… and leaving… the NFL. It was a powerful talk. I’ll share some video when it’s edited, but as Newman talked about leaving professional football behind he broke down on stage, pointed to his wife, Teri, who was sitting in the audience, and said, “That’s my rock right there.”
• A review of the first-year Worlds of Sport event came via text from a colleague this morning: “It was kids paradise. They loved it.”
• I spoke with defending conference champion and Utah coach Kyle Whittingham on the phone on Friday. He seemed focused, but predictably measured and grounded, in his expectations for this season. Whittingham said, “We just gotta keep it goin.’”
• I also talked with Washington State coach Jake Dickert, who told me that transfer quarterback Cameron Ward is every bit as advertised. He likes Ward’s command of the offense, quick release, and confidence. Dickert said, “Now, all we gotta do is keep him upright.”
• Is “gotta” required vernacular for Pac-12 football coaches? Discuss.
• If you didn’t catch my Father’s Day piece on the dads of the Pac-12 Conference, give the column a read. I rounded up a dozen high-profile Pac-12 personalities and asked them to tell me about their fathers. I saw some definite themes and left it smarter than when I started it.
• I have a bizarre column coming soon on a convicted felon who is busy these days impersonating a former NFL player. Should be a good read. Also, you’ll read more about Pac-12 boss man George Kliavkoff, who is approaching his official one-year anniversary on the job.
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