The future of conferences in college football

Reporter: Zach Oliveri Writer: Paul Dolan
How money is changing the landscape of conferences in college football. (CREDIT: MGN)

College football is changing just as the season is set for kick-off and the future of where to watch your game is part of it.

Passionate fans and big moments have cultivated the love of college football, growing its popularity across the country.

“It’s going to be really hard for a while to figure out who’s in what conference because it’s going to be different every fall,” Florid Gulf Coast University President Mike Martin said.

Texas and Oklahoma are leaving their traditional rivals to join the SEC. USC and UCLA are leaving their former conference to join the Big 10.

In the present, tradition speaks as loud as a library whisper while money is screaming into a megaphone.

And FGCU president Martin is familiar with these types of talks. While Martin was chancellor at LSU when Missouri and Texas A&M joined the SEC in 2011.

“Truth of the matter is it all came down to two things: how do we maximize our exposure from football and how do we make the most money we could make?” Martin said.

“I think we could ultimately end up with two conferences: one called ESPN and one called Fox,” Martin tweeted.

By 2024 ESPN and Fox will pretty much own the SEC and Big Ten.

While Martin has made some other predictions that haven’t yet come to fruition, he fears his conference expansion will morph into something worse.

“The university almost becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of the athletic department rather than the other way around,” Martin said.

For Florida fans, the college football shake-up is great because you get more money and more powerhouse teams on the schedule. For Florida State, Miami, UCF, and the rest the future is uncertain. And that’s because it’s clear their conferences, the ACC and the Big 12, can’t keep up with the powerful SEC and Big Ten.

These changes will also change the games viewers will see games on WINK. This year, SEC games will be featured every Saturday afternoon, while next season SEC and the Big Ten will share the WINK airwaves. And in 2024, WINK will carry Big Ten games only Saturdays at 3:30 p.m.

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