Updated May 14, 2014 - 1:43 pm
Dear Larry Scott, Know your audience
Don't make that announcement!
Stop the presses...er...stop the press conference!
I have the sneaking suspicion that Larry Scott is about to make his second mistake as commissioner of the Pac-12. I think that mistake is coming Thursday.
Larry Scott has been nails as commissioner. Other than the handling of the officiating issues at the Pac-12 Tournament in 2013, everything Scott has touched has turned to gold. The last time America went from the level of ineptitude before a change to this level of excellence, Ulysses S. Grant became general-in-chief of the United States Army.
Thursday, the Pac-12 will announce the football championship game will no longer be held at the home of the division champ with the best record. The only positive to this decision is this will be the biggest mistake in Larry Scott's tenure, so it's all uphill from here.
Obviously, the Pac-12 hasn't realized this: YOU'RE NOT THE SEC!
It's not about whether or not you play better football. The decision to move the championship game to a neutral site will expose Pac-12 fans even more. Pac-12 fans don't travel to their own team's games when they play at home. How are you going to get them to a neutral site? Thirty-thousand empty seats will look atrocious. Student ticket sales will be dramatically cut.
It was brilliant to put the game at campus sites because it brings a ready-made group of fans to the table.
Football is a religion in the South. Argue all you want whether it should be taken that seriously, but that's the reality. The Midwest, although a distant second, is far ahead of the West in football love. A Big Ten Championship game is in easy driving distance for any conference fan -- except for Rutgers and Maryland but that brings up a different topic. Therefore, the passion and ease of travel lead to sellouts, which will not happen in the Pac-12.
We will hear how great the basketball tournament has become by moving to Las Vegas. The subject of how majestic Levi's Stadium is will come up as a draw for fans. The commissioner is sure to say how great a weekend in San Francisco will be for Pac-12 fans. Everything will be set up as a great moment in Pac-12 history, until the game actually kicks off.
I hope the Pac-12 Network records the applause at the press conference for use later. The cheering will be much louder on Thursday celebrating the game than it will be in December at the game.
Doug Franz, Co-host of Doug & Wolf