Yahoo Sports’ Dan Wetzel and Sports Illustrated’s Pat Forde and Ross Dellenger discuss the discussions about uneven revenue distribution for member schools in the ACC, and debate impacts for top schools like Clemson and Florida State if the uneven distribution is not adopted.
PAT FORDE: This is where the ACC is. They did not dissolve, erupt, melt, fracture in half, but they also didn't fix anything. This was interesting-- I talked to a couple of people in the league.
There was discussion like, we need to put out a statement of unity amongst everybody. And the group finally came back and said, eh, let's not fake it. And the quote that I was given to me by one ACC source, we're not unified. We're unified until someone offers a school more to go somewhere else.
Everyone is going to grab it. So kudos to the ACC for at least telling the truth about where things stand. This did get everything on the table and get people moving faster towards a different revenue distribution, a success based, merit based revenue distribution that will not be even, that, I think, is much more agreeable than just saying, well, these schools are more in demand from ESPN and from TV, so they should get more.
You prove it on the field-- if you make the Playoff, if you make a Final Four, a deep run in the NCAA Tournament, you get more money. I'd be OK with that if I were the ACC at this point.
DAN WETZEL: Never really made all that sense that they share everything, conference units and stuff. I think they tried to do that as a PR move so that, like, one kid missing a free throw, they didn't want one free throw to be worth a half a million bucks for a school. That was bad PR.
Let me ask this-- untenable. Untenable that the other schools make $20 million more, $30 million more. Why is it untenable?
ROSS DELLENGER: Well, let's say it's on the low end. And let's say the SEC and Big Ten are making $20 million more a year than every ACC school. So that's $20 million. And over the course of, say, 10 years, because the ACC deal was 13 years long, right, left on it-- yeah, you're talking about, right, a significant amount of money to be spent, right, on facilities, coaching salaries. But here's the big one-- athlete pay when it comes down to it. At some point--
DAN WETZEL: But until then-- until then.
ROSS DELLENGER: We know. We've talked on the show before, right, NIL, athlete compensation. This is an evolution. And the next evolution is some kind of revenue sharing, direct pay, something coming. And I had an ACC coach is sitting in his office this past spring who said, that's the real concern for us. What's going to happen when we start having some kind of pay system and they're making that much more than we are?