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Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
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IceJus10 Offline
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Post: #41
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-11-2014 04:02 PM)Captain Bearcat Wrote:  For example, the Big Ten said that they were set with 12 members, with no expansion on the horizon. Then the SEC added TAMU and Mizzou. All of a sudden, the Big Ten thought Maryland and Rutgers were a great idea to add.

I'm not so sure Maryland and Rutgers were a response to the SEC, but rather reaction to Notre Dame's rebuff of the B1G and partial inclusion in the ACC.
02-12-2014 01:12 AM
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Post: #42
Re: RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-11-2014 11:19 PM)SuperFlyBCat Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 09:52 PM)DexterDevil Wrote:  I wish Cincy was AAU and didn't have to deal with OSU being greedy, same with Pitt market being "covered" by Penn State. Cincy and Pitt are my dream adds. UConn would be nice if Buffalo or UMass got good and built a huge following to add with them. I say the Big Ten pursues Virginia and UNC the most, so many school Presidents and the commish of the Big Ten come from those schools.

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Dex the ACC is NC ACC, don't see that. I say Big looks for VaTech, UVA, GTech first. Atlanta is a big market. For travel and oly sports Cincy and Ville would have been great adds.

Oh I know, I was just saying who the leaders want the most, still would prefer Cincy and Pitt though, would love to face them yearly.

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02-12-2014 01:35 AM
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CliftonAve Online
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Post: #43
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-11-2014 09:52 PM)DexterDevil Wrote:  I wish Cincy was AAU and didn't have to deal with OSU being greedy, same with Pitt market being "covered" by Penn State. Cincy and Pitt are my dream adds. UConn would be nice if Buffalo or UMass got good and built a huge following to add with them. I say the Big Ten pursues Virginia and UNC the most, so many school Presidents and the commish of the Big Ten come from those schools.

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Cincinnati has the chops to be an AAU school. They were a finalist the last couple times a school was added. Alas, the Old Boy Network is keeping the university out of the club as usual.

As for the B10 I think SuperFly's signature sums up UC's chances of ever getting an invitation to the conference.

http://chronicle.com/article/As-AAU-Admi...-to/65200/
(This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 08:42 AM by CliftonAve.)
02-12-2014 08:42 AM
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mlb Offline
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RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-11-2014 11:02 PM)Brick City Wrote:  Alright, I am sure this has been posted around here before, but a brief primer on GOR:

(1) A grant of rights (common in the media industry for decades and the validity of which is well established) is an irrevocable transfer of property rights. It is NOT a contract and therefore the unenforceable penalty line of common law does not apply. Pretty sure whoever the high powered lawyer was that originally thought up the GOR did it precisely to get around judges who do not like contract provisions acting as penalties (which have long been considered restraints on trade).

(2) A GOR cannot be 'broken' and there are no penalties associated with it. The schools' media rights were transferred to the conference the moment the GOR was executed - it is a done deal.

(3) The only way to invalidate the transfer of property would be to prove fraud or other wrongdoing. It is extremely unlikely that was present on either part of the conference or its 14 member schools. Furthermore, these are 15 highly sophisticated business entities all represented by very expensive counsel - no one was getting duped in this deal.

(4) Maryland's success or failure with its lawsuit will have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the validity of the ACC's or any other conference's GOR. Even if Maryland wins on all counts (blows the ACC's $52m exit fee out of the water and wins millions in counterclaims), the ACC GOR of rights will remain unchanged. The only hurdle removed for any other schools thinking about leaving is the exit fee - they would still be leaving all of their media rights behind with the ACC.

Sorry for the long post, but I think there are a lot of misconceptions concerning GOR because they are relatively new to the realignment game (even though some conferences have had them for years, I suspect they were not talked about much). These have been in place a very long time in other industries and they are virtually impossible to undo. Unless a school does not care about leaving behind its media rights, the ACC, B12, B10 and PAC do not have to worry about being poached until their GOR expire (or maybe a year or so before depending on how much money a school might be willing to leave behind).

There is no "contract" that can't be broken. It most certainly is reversible for the right price. Like I said, we'll see what happens and how much Maryland eventually pays to get out. It will set a market price which will then either make or break plans for others.

Honestly, I can't believe some of the posts here. The only thing that has been proven thus far in the "expansion era" of college athletics is that more is going to happen. I don't care what people say, it is only a matter of time before more happens. It will take 1 school deciding to go to court over the GOR and winning and you will see a whole host of other schools doing the same. WVU was supposed to stay for 27 months after withdrawing from the Big East and left in 9. Others will do the same in the future because the money difference is so great.
02-12-2014 10:51 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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Post: #45
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-11-2014 11:02 PM)Brick City Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 04:49 PM)mlb Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 04:36 PM)C Marlow Wrote:  Yes, some people speculate... But what this speculation fails to acknowledge, which btw is typical of people who try to gin up traffic to their sites, is the GOR. The GOR dwarfs the exit fee currently in place. Technically, it is no longer needed because there is a GOR in place.

Agreed. And it could be declared invalid if this goes to court. If it doesn't go to court, other schools could leave saying a precedent has been set lowering the penalty for breaking the GOR. Due to the knowledge that Maryland has, and the subpoenas filed on behalf of Maryland to UL, UM, Syracuse, BC, etc., I'm going to guess that is some damning evidence regarding the Big East breakup, Pitt's role, ESPN's role, etc... Maryland will get out cheap, it will set the precedent, and if other schools so choose to leave then they will do so at a steeply discounted rate.

Alright, I am sure this has been posted around here before, but a brief primer on GOR:

(1) A grant of rights (common in the media industry for decades and the validity of which is well established) is an irrevocable transfer of property rights. It is NOT a contract and therefore the unenforceable penalty line of common law does not apply. Pretty sure whoever the high powered lawyer was that originally thought up the GOR did it precisely to get around judges who do not like contract provisions acting as penalties (which have long been considered restraints on trade).

(2) A GOR cannot be 'broken' and there are no penalties associated with it. The schools' media rights were transferred to the conference the moment the GOR was executed - it is a done deal.

(3) The only way to invalidate the transfer of property would be to prove fraud or other wrongdoing. It is extremely unlikely that was present on either part of the conference or its 14 member schools. Furthermore, these are 15 highly sophisticated business entities all represented by very expensive counsel - no one was getting duped in this deal.

(4) Maryland's success or failure with its lawsuit will have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the validity of the ACC's or any other conference's GOR. Even if Maryland wins on all counts (blows the ACC's $52m exit fee out of the water and wins millions in counterclaims), the ACC GOR of rights will remain unchanged. The only hurdle removed for any other schools thinking about leaving is the exit fee - they would still be leaving all of their media rights behind with the ACC.

Sorry for the long post, but I think there are a lot of misconceptions concerning GOR because they are relatively new to the realignment game (even though some conferences have had them for years, I suspect they were not talked about much). These have been in place a very long time in other industries and they are virtually impossible to undo. Unless a school does not care about leaving behind its media rights, the ACC, B12, B10 and PAC do not have to worry about being poached until their GOR expire (or maybe a year or so before depending on how much money a school might be willing to leave behind).

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02-12-2014 11:45 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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Post: #46
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 10:51 AM)mlb Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 11:02 PM)Brick City Wrote:  Alright, I am sure this has been posted around here before, but a brief primer on GOR:

(1) A grant of rights (common in the media industry for decades and the validity of which is well established) is an irrevocable transfer of property rights. It is NOT a contract and therefore the unenforceable penalty line of common law does not apply. Pretty sure whoever the high powered lawyer was that originally thought up the GOR did it precisely to get around judges who do not like contract provisions acting as penalties (which have long been considered restraints on trade).

(2) A GOR cannot be 'broken' and there are no penalties associated with it. The schools' media rights were transferred to the conference the moment the GOR was executed - it is a done deal.

(3) The only way to invalidate the transfer of property would be to prove fraud or other wrongdoing. It is extremely unlikely that was present on either part of the conference or its 14 member schools. Furthermore, these are 15 highly sophisticated business entities all represented by very expensive counsel - no one was getting duped in this deal.

(4) Maryland's success or failure with its lawsuit will have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the validity of the ACC's or any other conference's GOR. Even if Maryland wins on all counts (blows the ACC's $52m exit fee out of the water and wins millions in counterclaims), the ACC GOR of rights will remain unchanged. The only hurdle removed for any other schools thinking about leaving is the exit fee - they would still be leaving all of their media rights behind with the ACC.

Sorry for the long post, but I think there are a lot of misconceptions concerning GOR because they are relatively new to the realignment game (even though some conferences have had them for years, I suspect they were not talked about much). These have been in place a very long time in other industries and they are virtually impossible to undo. Unless a school does not care about leaving behind its media rights, the ACC, B12, B10 and PAC do not have to worry about being poached until their GOR expire (or maybe a year or so before depending on how much money a school might be willing to leave behind).

There is no "contract" that can't be broken. It most certainly is reversible for the right price.

If e.g. Kansas wants to join the B1G and needs to get out of its GOR with the Big 12 to do so, and if the Big 12 agrees for a price, then the GOR contract was not broken, it was renegotiated.
02-12-2014 11:47 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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Post: #47
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-11-2014 08:13 PM)JRsec Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 07:57 PM)He1nousOne Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 07:52 PM)jgkojak Wrote:  I think its unlikely the B1G wouldn't entertain 16 in a couple years when their TV deal is up- its why their logo is B1G - the 1G looks like a 16 - silly but utterly true (the B12 owns the Big 16 name).

So if not UConn, then who? I understand why they'd target UNC, VA and Georgia Tech - fantastic academic programs with football/multi-sport history in new markets. But I'm fairly convinced UNC is sticking with the ACC, and thus so will these other schools - Notre Dame sealed that for me.

Yes, 16 is the target point. There was talk of perhaps having to go past it but in the end that didn't happen. As for now, it is very unlikely the Big Ten ever goes past 16 and it is just as unlikely that they stay at 14 for very long.

They'll want and probably get two more prior to their contract being up in 2 years. I really do think that Kansas will be one of them. The question is who will be the other?

Why would the B1G want to share $40m a year in media and bowl money with Kansas? They don't bring nearly so much market value to the table.

Maryland and Rutgers did: They provided access to the huge NYC and affluent Washington DC markets. Kansas does nothing like that, nor does UConn, Cincy, or any of the others often bandied about around here.

The only schools the B1G would expand for are Notre Dame or ones already in other P5s and those of course will be extremely hard to get given the GORs. And not just any schools in the P5 like Kansas, but ones with elite football and/or market power.
(This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 11:52 AM by quo vadis.)
02-12-2014 11:51 AM
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HuskyU Offline
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Post: #48
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 11:51 AM)quo vadis Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 08:13 PM)JRsec Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 07:57 PM)He1nousOne Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 07:52 PM)jgkojak Wrote:  I think its unlikely the B1G wouldn't entertain 16 in a couple years when their TV deal is up- its why their logo is B1G - the 1G looks like a 16 - silly but utterly true (the B12 owns the Big 16 name).

So if not UConn, then who? I understand why they'd target UNC, VA and Georgia Tech - fantastic academic programs with football/multi-sport history in new markets. But I'm fairly convinced UNC is sticking with the ACC, and thus so will these other schools - Notre Dame sealed that for me.

Yes, 16 is the target point. There was talk of perhaps having to go past it but in the end that didn't happen. As for now, it is very unlikely the Big Ten ever goes past 16 and it is just as unlikely that they stay at 14 for very long.

They'll want and probably get two more prior to their contract being up in 2 years. I really do think that Kansas will be one of them. The question is who will be the other?

Why would the B1G want to share $40m a year in media and bowl money with Kansas? They don't bring nearly so much market value to the table.

Maryland and Rutgers did: They provided access to the huge NYC and affluent Washington DC markets. Kansas does nothing like that, nor does UConn, Cincy, or any of the others often bandied about around here.

The only schools the B1G would expand for are Notre Dame or ones already in other P5s and those of course will be extremely hard to get given the GORs. And not just any schools in the P5 like Kansas, but ones with elite football and/or market power.

Fail. The B1G made it clear that they'll expand for either markets (like Rutgers & Maryland) or national brands (like Nebraska). Kansas is not only a national brand, but a basketball power.
02-12-2014 11:58 AM
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Post: #49
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
The thing that makes the grant of rights so powerful is that it reverses things. Right now it's up to the conferences loosing members to try to sue and get what they can. Exit fees penalties or not, the courts are only willing to go so far there.

The grant of rights is the opposite though. A school can still leave as it sees fit, but the old conference retains control of the media rights. That means that if no agreement is reached, the school doesn't get them back till the end of the contract. Suing in this case is a lot less helpful to the school, because it doubtful a court is just going to outright give them back.
02-12-2014 12:02 PM
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Post: #50
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
I can't believe the big 12 would ever let KU out of its GOR. Maybe the big 12 would let out WVU if the acc invited them for spot 16. In that case, the big 12 could add byu but that would probably take ESPN wanting these moves. Yet, if the rules get changed, who knows what happens. If you go with the 3 pod of 6 concept and a 2 game playoff, maybe the pac 12 and big 10 carve up the big 12 down the road. Send Texas, texas tech, OU, Ok state, KSU, and ISU to the pac 18 with KU, Missouri, WVU and maybe New York State to the big 10.

Pac 18
A: USC, UCLA, CAL, Stan, Ariz, ASU
B: Wash, WSU, Oreg, OSU, Utah, Col
C: Texas, Texas Tech, OU, Ok State, K state, I state

Big 10
A: Wis, MIn, Io, NEb, KU, Missouri
B: NW, ILL, IU, Pur, UM, MSU
C: OSU, PSU, NY State, Rutgers, Maryland ,WVU
02-12-2014 12:04 PM
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Post: #51
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 12:02 PM)ohio1317 Wrote:  The thing that makes the grant of rights so powerful is that it reverses things. Right now it's up to the conferences loosing members to try to sue and get what they can. Exit fees penalties or not, the courts are only willing to go so far there.

The grant of rights is the opposite though. A school can still leave as it sees fit, but the old conference retains control of the media rights. That means that if no agreement is reached, the school doesn't get them back till the end of the contract. Suing in this case is a lot less helpful to the school, because it doubtful a court is just going to outright give them back.

Essentially the school is taking away its earning power. Courts have never agreed on that deal. Same with the non-compete clauses that have been thrown out by courts... you can't make it so that an entity cannot earn. At some point you will see a school challenge that and they will win, IMO.
02-12-2014 12:18 PM
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Post: #52
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
would a school who signed a GOR but left a conference, not get paid by their old conference? I was under the impression that a GOR meant you could not leave and then go sell your media rights to another conference. As long as the member school in question is still getting paid fairly by someone, whether it be the conference or the network whom the conference sold the rights to, then the courts should find it legal. I do think it would be highly questionable to not pay a school who has committed to a GOR but is no longer with the conference.

To me a GOR is a sale of a schools media rights for X number of years to a conference. Even if you are no longer in that conference the GOR says the sale is still valid and you cannot shop your rights elsewhere. If that is the case, then they must still be paid for that sale or else it I see it as a restraint of trade.
(This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 12:26 PM by solohawks.)
02-12-2014 12:25 PM
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Eagle78 Offline
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Post: #53
Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 12:18 PM)mlb Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 12:02 PM)ohio1317 Wrote:  The thing that makes the grant of rights so powerful is that it reverses things. Right now it's up to the conferences loosing members to try to sue and get what they can. Exit fees penalties or not, the courts are only willing to go so far there.

The grant of rights is the opposite though. A school can still leave as it sees fit, but the old conference retains control of the media rights. That means that if no agreement is reached, the school doesn't get them back till the end of the contract. Suing in this case is a lot less helpful to the school, because it doubtful a court is just going to outright give them back.

Essentially the school is taking away its earning power. Courts have never agreed on that deal. Same with the non-compete clauses that have been thrown out by courts... you can't make it so that an entity cannot earn. At some point you will see a school challenge that and they will win, IMO.

In my opinion, your thesis is basically correct. I believe people in these threads often conflate the exit fees with GORs. In reality, they are completely different and distinct animals. Exit fees carry issues of liquidated damages, etc. that GORs, IMO, by their very nature do not carry.

What is a GOR? As has been widely reported, it is a sale of property where, in these cases, entities voluntarily and unanimously sell their media rights for a specific period of time. As has also been reported, the selling entities have received consideration for this sale in the form of higher TV contracts. Once the sale occurs, it is done. Unless there is provable fraud, I don't think you can go back and reverse this any more than a person selling their home can, after the sale has concluded, go back and say "gosh, I made a mistake, I want my house back"!
02-12-2014 12:29 PM
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HuskyU Offline
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Post: #54
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
http://msn.foxsports.com/college-footbal...rights.php

Sounds plausible to me...

IMO Kansas will be in the B1G before their contract renewal.
(This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 12:34 PM by HuskyU.)
02-12-2014 12:32 PM
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Attackcoog Offline
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Post: #55
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 12:25 PM)solohawks Wrote:  would a school who signed a GOR but left a conference, not get paid by their old conference? I was under the impression that a GOR meant you could not leave and then go sell your media rights to another conference. As long as the member school in question is still getting paid fairly by someone, whether it be the conference or the network whom the conference sold the rights to, then the courts should find it legal. I do think it would be highly questionable to not pay a school who has committed to a GOR but is no longer with the conference.

To me a GOR is a sale of a schools media rights for X number of years to a conference. Even if you are no longer in that conference the GOR says the sale is still valid and you cannot shop your rights elsewhere. If that is the case, then they must still be paid for that sale or else it I see it as a restraint of trade.

FWIW---Ive heard the AAC GOR still pays the school after they leave, but the B12 does not. My guess is the B-12 GOR wont hold up if it fails to pay the departing school its fair share of revenue. Maybe the GOR can be salvaged by simply paying the departing school their share of revenue---but I don't think holding the rights while giving the departing school no revenue will be upheld.
02-12-2014 12:32 PM
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Eagle78 Offline
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Post: #56
Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 12:25 PM)solohawks Wrote:  would a school who signed a GOR but left a conference, not get paid by their old conference? I was under the impression that a GOR meant you could not leave and then go sell your media rights to another conference. As long as the member school in question is still getting paid fairly by someone, whether it be the conference or the network whom the conference sold the rights to, then the courts should find it legal. I do think it would be highly questionable to not pay a school who has committed to a GOR but is no longer with the conference.

To me a GOR is a sale of a schools media rights for X number of years to a conference. Even if you are no longer in that conference the GOR says the sale is still valid and you cannot shop your rights elsewhere. If that is the case, then they must still be paid for that sale or else it I see it as a restraint of trade.

In my opionion, THAT would be an interesting question; and I have not seen anything definitively on just how this would be handled.

I don't know the answer to this, but, IMO, I could see a scenario where a school leaves conference A where member schools are paid evenly at, say $25M a year, and goes to conference B where schools are paid evenly at, say, 35M a year. I could see a scenario where conference A receives the $35M a year from conference B, puts that into its conference revenue "pot", and divides the adjusted pot evenly among all members, plus the departed member. IMO, what would be a fascinating question in this scenario: how much access would conference A, as holder of the media rights of a conference B school, have to conference B media decisions, strategies, etc?

I don't know the answer to this, but I can easily surmise that this is the real genius of the GORs; that they act as a sort of "poison pill" to poaching conferences.

If something like this were to occur, get the popcorn ready! LOL
(This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 12:52 PM by Eagle78.)
02-12-2014 12:47 PM
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ken d Offline
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Post: #57
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 12:32 PM)Attackcoog Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 12:25 PM)solohawks Wrote:  would a school who signed a GOR but left a conference, not get paid by their old conference? I was under the impression that a GOR meant you could not leave and then go sell your media rights to another conference. As long as the member school in question is still getting paid fairly by someone, whether it be the conference or the network whom the conference sold the rights to, then the courts should find it legal. I do think it would be highly questionable to not pay a school who has committed to a GOR but is no longer with the conference.

To me a GOR is a sale of a schools media rights for X number of years to a conference. Even if you are no longer in that conference the GOR says the sale is still valid and you cannot shop your rights elsewhere. If that is the case, then they must still be paid for that sale or else it I see it as a restraint of trade.

FWIW---Ive heard the AAC GOR still pays the school after they leave, but the B12 does not. My guess is the B-12 GOR wont hold up if it fails to pay the departing school its fair share of revenue. Maybe the GOR can be salvaged by simply paying the departing school their share of revenue---but I don't think holding the rights while giving the departing school no revenue will be upheld.

What would be the point of having a GOR if you still have to pay a school who leaves the conference? Perhaps this comes down to an interpretation (or more likely, to the wording of the Grants contract itself) of exactly what the consideration is that the granting school receives. Is the consideration the future payments the league will get, and distribute, or is it just the greater assurance of financial stability that all members gain from having entered voluntarily into a mutual pact?

If it's the former, then why wouldn't the school continue to receive a share of the payouts? But if it's the latter, then the departing school can be said to have willingly abandoned the consideration it had already received, and is therefore not due any further consideration.
02-12-2014 01:21 PM
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Post: #58
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
There is a lot of hoping, wishing and praying by a few fans within this thread that GOR's can be easily ripped apart. Unfortunately, this will not be the case as indicated by a number of posters in this thread and a few other threads.

Do people really wonder why "lesser P5 schools" like Indiana, Purdue, Wake, Miss St, Iowa St, etc. are in P5 conferences while other "more worthy schools" like USF, UCF, UCONN, Cincy, etc are not? It's really, really simple. Schools like OSU, Michigan, Texas, Alabama, etc. WANT TO ASSOCIATE WITH their current conference mates. Not only that, but almost every P5 school is HAPPY where they are right now!!! Supposedly GT, UVA and UNC were offered invites to join the B1G. Those schools said "no thanks", and then elected to sign a GOR and remain a part of the ACC... AFTER TELLING THE B1G NO THANK YOU.

As of today, the majority of the P5 conference schools do not want to rub elbows with Cincy, UCONN, USF, etc. These are voluntary associations. It's not like the B1G was sitting there all happy and content many years ago and some powerful, unstoppable entity FORCED them to take Indiana, Purdue, Illinois on as member schools or else... There are no conspiracies to keep schools down or to ruin schools out of fear of competition or anything like that. The bottom line is that schools are associating together in the different conferences because they WANT to be together.
02-12-2014 01:58 PM
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Brick City Offline
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Post: #59
RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
(02-12-2014 12:59 AM)Badger Wrote:  04-bow I agree. Big Ten adds two more schools in the next two years because of the contract renewal. Who? Kansas and Virginia Tech...one good BB and one good football program.

Again, I know some speculators and dreamers on here do not want to read this, but it is extremely unlikely that a conference with a GOR will be poached. Kansas and Virginia Tech are both staying put unless a mutual agreement is reached between them and their present conferences (this was addressed in a post I quoted after yours).

(02-12-2014 10:51 AM)mlb Wrote:  
(02-11-2014 11:02 PM)Brick City Wrote:  Alright, I am sure this has been posted around here before, but a brief primer on GOR:

(1) A grant of rights (common in the media industry for decades and the validity of which is well established) is an irrevocable transfer of property rights. It is NOT a contract and therefore the unenforceable penalty line of common law does not apply. Pretty sure whoever the high powered lawyer was that originally thought up the GOR did it precisely to get around judges who do not like contract provisions acting as penalties (which have long been considered restraints on trade).

(2) A GOR cannot be 'broken' and there are no penalties associated with it. The schools' media rights were transferred to the conference the moment the GOR was executed - it is a done deal.

(3) The only way to invalidate the transfer of property would be to prove fraud or other wrongdoing. It is extremely unlikely that was present on either part of the conference or its 14 member schools. Furthermore, these are 15 highly sophisticated business entities all represented by very expensive counsel - no one was getting duped in this deal.

(4) Maryland's success or failure with its lawsuit will have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the validity of the ACC's or any other conference's GOR. Even if Maryland wins on all counts (blows the ACC's $52m exit fee out of the water and wins millions in counterclaims), the ACC GOR of rights will remain unchanged. The only hurdle removed for any other schools thinking about leaving is the exit fee - they would still be leaving all of their media rights behind with the ACC.

Sorry for the long post, but I think there are a lot of misconceptions concerning GOR because they are relatively new to the realignment game (even though some conferences have had them for years, I suspect they were not talked about much). These have been in place a very long time in other industries and they are virtually impossible to undo. Unless a school does not care about leaving behind its media rights, the ACC, B12, B10 and PAC do not have to worry about being poached until their GOR expire (or maybe a year or so before depending on how much money a school might be willing to leave behind).

(1) There is no "contract" that can't be broken. It most certainly is reversible for the right price. (2) Like I said, we'll see what happens and how much Maryland eventually pays to get out. It will set a market price which will then either make or break plans for others.

Honestly, I can't believe some of the posts here. The only thing that has been proven thus far in the "expansion era" of college athletics is that more is going to happen. I don't care what people say, it is only a matter of time before more happens. It will take 1 school deciding to go to court over the GOR and winning and you will see a whole host of other schools doing the same. WVU was supposed to stay for 27 months after withdrawing from the Big East and left in 9. Others will do the same in the future because the money difference is so great.

(1) Assuming that the GOR is written as an assignment of rights (one time property transfer completed upon execution of the GOR) instead of a license (an ongoing agreement which runs for the duration of the deal), there is no contract to be 'broken.' It is almost certain these are assignments of rights as that is vital for the GOR structure to avoid typical contract law (with its unenforceable penalties and no contract is unbreakable pitfalls).

As I mentioned in my initial post on the subject, this has been commonly used in the media industry for decades. For example, the courts recently affirmed Disney's rights to Winnie the Pooh which were assigned to the company by the author A. A. Milne back in the 1930s (amendments to the Copyright Act in the 1970s would have allowed his son Christopher Robin to back out so Disney offered him a better deal to retain the rights in 1983). The case hinged on the fact that the transfer was a one and done assignment of rights and not an ongoing license.

http://www.bizjournals.com/losangeles/ne...ights.html

The sports media are not generally experts on this but I have only seen 'assignment' in any coverage of GORs and never the word 'license.' It would be colossal malpractice on the part of the firms drafting these if it was anything besides an assignment of the rights for the specified term of years (matching the length of the media deal for each conference).

(2) To reiterate and expand upon my earlier point, the Maryland lawsuit does not implicate the ACC GOR (Maryland obviously did not take part and never granted any rights to the ACC) and therefore has absolutely no bearing on that agreement. Maryland is not seeking to invalidate the ACC GOR and likely has no interest in challenging the validity of a GOR agreement since that is used by its new conference as well. The only thing the Maryland lawsuit will do is set a precedent regarding the validity and enforceability of conference exit fees. That will not matter much to anyone besides Maryland and the ACC since 4 out of the 5 major conferences use GOR and the SEC to my knowledge uses nothing.

(02-12-2014 11:47 AM)quo vadis Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 10:51 AM)mlb Wrote:  There is no "contract" that can't be broken. It most certainly is reversible for the right price.

If e.g. Kansas wants to join the B1G and needs to get out of its GOR with the Big 12 to do so, and if the Big 12 agrees for a price, then the GOR contract was not broken, it was renegotiated.

This is the only likely way a school can get out of a GOR - if its existing conference is enticed to grant the rights back with enough money from the new conference's and/or the school's warchest.

(02-12-2014 12:02 PM)ohio1317 Wrote:  The thing that makes the grant of rights so powerful is that it reverses things. Right now it's up to the conferences loosing members to try to sue and get what they can. Exit fees penalties or not, the courts are only willing to go so far there.

The grant of rights is the opposite though. A school can still leave as it sees fit, but the old conference retains control of the media rights. That means that if no agreement is reached, the school doesn't get them back till the end of the contract. Suing in this case is a lot less helpful to the school, because it doubtful a court is just going to outright give them back.

The second paragraph hits the nail on the head. The burden is on the school to reacquire its rights and it would face a lengthy and very uphill journey to do that. Of course they could sue, but given the strength of GOR in the media industry and recent caselaw reaffirming its validity, I doubt such a lawsuit would get very far.

(02-12-2014 12:18 PM)mlb Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 12:02 PM)ohio1317 Wrote:  The thing that makes the grant of rights so powerful is that it reverses things. Right now it's up to the conferences loosing members to try to sue and get what they can. Exit fees penalties or not, the courts are only willing to go so far there.

The grant of rights is the opposite though. A school can still leave as it sees fit, but the old conference retains control of the media rights. That means that if no agreement is reached, the school doesn't get them back till the end of the contract. Suing in this case is a lot less helpful to the school, because it doubtful a court is just going to outright give them back.

Essentially the school is taking away its earning power. Courts have never agreed on that deal. Same with the non-compete clauses that have been thrown out by courts... you can't make it so that an entity cannot earn. At some point you will see a school challenge that and they will win, IMO.

Sorry to keep targeting you 'mlb' but your statement above is misguided on several counts. First, earning power can certainly be assigned to another party. The courts usually like to see some sort of valid consideration (something of value received in return). In the case of A. A. Milne above it was royalty payments from Disney (he assigned his rights to them and did not have to deal with administering them in exchange for payments). There is ample consideration on behalf of a conference accepting media rights from its member schools, ranging from increased value of the media deal because of the GOR to more stability and security for the member schools.

Second, GOR are just as dissimilar to non-compete clauses as they are to unenforceable penalties in contracts. The brilliance of the GOR is that because it is a transfer of property (just like a house or a car), none of these other legal theories come into play. If the GOR was between an unsophisticated average Joe and a corporate titan with large differences in knowledge and bargaining power it would be a different story (that is why lots of clauses in credit card agreements where the consumer has no bargaining power can get tossed by a judge). However, repeating what I said earlier, since the GOR is between highly sophisticated and well represented parties, it is extremely unlikely that a court will interfere with a valid commercial transaction at this level.
(This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 02:08 PM by Brick City.)
02-12-2014 01:59 PM
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mlb Offline
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RE: Tom DIenhart: UConn not on Big Ten radar, locked out of a major conference
I guess we shall see, Brick City. I'm positive that a school will end up challenging the GOR. It will happen most likely in the next 5-10 years, and it will set the precedent when it is done. Either they hold up or they fall apart.
02-12-2014 02:13 PM
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