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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

June 16, 2010 at 3:24 PM

Utah in Pac-10 — how does it impact UW?

It’s now official that Utah is in the Pac-10, and Bud Withers has all the details here. You can also read the view from Utah here.
More pertinent to this blog is how all of this may impact UW. So I again was able to talk to UW AD Scott Woodward today to get some of his thoughts:
— Woodward said of adding Utah that it is “a great institution in a great market” and that adding the Utes along with Colorado “makes us very strong in the Mountain Time Zone.” That was a key component of all of this, enabling the Pac-10 to sell a broader reach, and two more sizeable TV markets, when it goes to negotiate its next TV deal in 2011. No one is sure exactly how much more money the Pac-10 will get, but estimates run as high as potentially doubling the current deals (particularly when throwing in a conference title football game).
—- There’s lots of conjecture out there that the Pac-10 will split into North and South divisions, with UW obviously in the North, along with the other three NW schools and Cal and Stanford. Much of that is coming from a Denver Post story that said today that it was a condition of Colorado’s entry that it would be placed in the South along with USC and UCLA. The story quotes CU athletic director Mike Bohn as confirming the school’s inclusion in the South.
Woodward, however, said that he did not think there was any finality yet to how the divisions would be formed, saying that “we have not hashed it out yet.” He said he held some internal meetings with UW coaches and staffers the past two days discussing possible options, including that there could be different divisional alignments by sport. “All of that has yet to be discussed,” he said.
He said ideally that UW would play the LA schools annually, saying that “we want to go down there every year.” But he said an alignment where that doesn’t occur “is doable” to ensure that the conference works the best for all involved financially and athletically.
He said he thinks the division formats could be worked out during conference calls the next month or so and finalized during regularly scheduled conference meetings later this summer.
— The two new schools aren’t expected to enter the Pac-10 until 2012, so Woodward said UW will not have to make any scheduling changes until then, at the earliest. Still, the plan is to work the new conference schedule around pre-existing non-conference games (such as UW’s trip to LSU in 2012), so Woodward doesn’t anticipate any significant hurdles.
The only scheduling issue that is a certainty to have to be addressed is a planned series with Colorado in 2015-16. Woodward isn’t sure what will happen with those yet but obviously something will need to be done — possibly they just become conference games and UW then adds another non-conference series.
— While there’s been much talk the last few days about what happened to kill the Pac-16, Woodward reiterated he wasn’t intimately involved in the discussions. However, he said he thinks the preference of Texas and AD DeLoss Dodds was to remain in the Big 12 if possible with the best deal possible. “I believe Texas wanted to hold the Big 12 together and get a better deal, and they got a better deal out of it,” he said.
All for now.

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