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Nov
17
2012

Behind the ACC’s Orange Bowl and Playoff Money.

This past week the ACC finalized their deal with Orange Bowl and ESPN, and there was little more nervousness in ACC Circles that maybe the ACC didn’t get a good deal because they are splitting the $55 Million TV deal evenly with the Big 10 and SEC in years those conferences are in the Bowl.

While I still don’t think the ACC should have agreed to an even split of the Orange Bowl Money, I wanted to see for myself was this a reasonable difference give all the obscene amounts of money running around for the college football playoffs.

Here’s what we know for  fact.

The SEC and Big 10 get to appear at least 3 times in a 12 year period. Notre Dame can’t appear more than twice.

Let’s assume just a couple of figures. The Orange Bowl will rotate as a semi-final location. Let’s say 4 out of 12 years, leaving the ACC with 8 years of the Orange Bowl.

Now we’ll compare the ACC to the SEC because they both have 14 teams, and say it’s the SEC in the Orange Bowl 4 years Big 10 3 and ND at least 1.

Using $27.5 Million for each conference… So the SEC can make $110 Million in a 12 year period. The ACC makes $192 Million in 7 years, and we’ll say $45 million / $10 Million split in the ND year. That’s 237.5 Million for the ACC in 12 years. I’ve arrived at the 10 Million figure for Notre Dame, because they get 6 Million now for a BCS game appearance. I think a 4 million dollar increase for 1 team is quite reasonable.

That’s 1.4 Million per ACC team each year. SEC makes 650K per SEC team in a 12 year period.

Now SEC has their Sugar Bowl… 40 Million 12 out 12 years. So 2.85 Million a year for the SEC Teams.

Contract Bowls ACC  Money = 1.4 Million per ACC team over 12 years

Contract Bowls SEC Money  = 2.85 Million + 650K = 3.5 Million per team over 12 years.

Now here’s the bulk of the money. That’s when you throw $500 Million for the playoffs EACH year for 12 years with an estimated 80% to the Big 5 conferences (SEC, Big 10, Big 12, ACC, Pac 12)

Now you have 80 Million per each conference a year, that’s 5.71 Million for each ACC and SEC team.

So in pure playoff money not counting more than your contract teams getting in.

Each ACC team gets an additional $7.11 Million a year over 12 years: 5.71 Million + 1.4 Million
Each SEC team gets an additional $9.2 Million a year over 12 years: 5.71 Million + 3.5 Million

If ND appears twice the money is a little closer, and if they don’t appear at all in the Orange Bowl its a little further apart so I split difference.

There’s a gap, but the playoff money difference doesn’t seem nearly as wide now. Of course we haven’t figured in additional conference teams getting into the semi-finals and access bowls. To me though, that’s determined by your play on the field. You win, you make more money. I have no problem with conferences cashing in with on the field success. I’m looking at this from the pure contracted payout.

Honestly given the ACC’s relative lack of football success in recent years the contracted money is quite reasonable.

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