Wednesday Skull Session

By Chris Lauderback on September 15, 2010 at 6:00a
BTN's Melanie Collins - I think I can look past her PSU fandom.

This just in, the BTN prints money. According to the Sports Business Journal, the network that people like me despised upon launch is producing nearly $70 million per year to the Big Ten conference. Damn, son. It's easy to see why the network serves as the blueprint for other power conferences looking to set up shop especially when it's believed the network is just scratching the surface on potential revenue generation. Some other staggering numbers from the article:

  • 2009 saw the network achieve 42 million customers at $0.36 a pop (per month), good for $182.5 million revenue dollars.
  • Another $21 million was achieved from other sources, specifically advertising scratch.
  • 2012 is projected to yield nearly $273 million in revenue and a 36% profit. 

Maybe 11W should start a network. We've got plenty of old games on VHS and I'm pretty sure Jason knows the rules of women's soccer.

Mike Leach - King of the spoken word. The coach voted Most Likely to Lock a Punk in a Shed made a sterling debut as a color analyst for CBS during last Saturday's contest between UCF and NC State. He paid homage to Hells Bells as one of the greatest inspirational songs for a defense, complimented the UCF music man for playing what sounded like the opening song to The Omen and described a UCF defensive sequence as a "constipated effort" while periodically showcasing his face for radio. A few of his better blurbs included:

“The timeouts, it’s a little bit like money, you don’t want to die with them and give them to your kids so you might as well use them if you need them.”


"I remember when I was a kid Fourth of July was big for me ’cause in Wyoming you could have fireworks all over the place and we’d literally have wars with our neighbors with them.”

Something tells me he's just getting warmed up.

Stank special teams deemed contagious. Looks like Ohio University and the Buckeyes have at least one thing in common - dubious speciality units. In the case of OU, it's actually catching the football moreso than kick/punt coverage. In Saturday's defeat at the hands of the mighty Toledo Rockets, the Bobcats muffed two punts and one kickoff. One of the failed punt returns resulted in a turnover while the botched kickoff return pinned the Bobcats at their own 10 yard line.

Tim Brewster death watch heats up. Following the lost to South Dakota, the Minny Star Tribune polled readers asking if Tight End Tim should be shown the door. The results weren't surprising. A hefty 67% said Brewster should be fired immediately with another 20% saying yes, but to wait until the end of the season. Apparently, 4.6% of the Minneapolis population is either hooked or meth or related to Brewster as they indicate coach isn't the problem. Former All-American Bob Stein is not one of the meth-heads:

"It's not just the [South Dakota loss], but the condition of the whole program, all things considered. The condition of the football program is shameful."

As a followup, the paper asked how the Gophers will fare against USC this weekend. An overwhelming 74% predict a USC win of 25+ with another 16% saying USC prevails by 11-24 points. Yikes.

Speaking of U$C, the university is now requiring media covering the squad in person to complete and sign an admission form to certify they are not, "an agent (e.g., sports agent, marketing agent or financial advisor to athletes) or any such agent’s employee, representative or affiliate (including “runners”)."  This seems like a logical step for the Trojans but too little, too late.

Finally, for the 7 of you that won't be offended, there's two quick nuggets from Baptist on the basketball Buckeyes. First, players start skill instruction workouts with coaches tomorrow with full practice scheduled to begin October 15th. Second, soon to be starting point guard Aaron Craft is becoming famous for being one of the recruits Bruce Pearl illegally recruited by inviting them to his home during an unofficial visit to Tennessee. The lowdown from Gary Parrish:

Sources told that Craft -- along with fellow Class of 2010 prospect Josh Selby, who also was committed to Tennessee at the time, and perhaps another recruit -- visited Pearl's home during an unofficial visit to Tennessee later that same year, which is a violation of NCAA rules because high school juniors aren't allowed to engage college coaches away from campus. Pearl denied that Craft and Selby ever had been to his home when NCAA assistant director of enforcement Kristen Matha initially asked. The problem with that approach was that the NCAA, according to sources, already had in its possession a picture of Pearl and Craft that was snapped inside Pearl's home, which led to the line of questioning in the first place. It's unclear who took the picture or how the NCAA obtained it.

Liar, liar, pants on fire? Sure sounds like it. All this coming from a guy who was taping conversations with Deon Thomas back in the day after Pearl, then an assistant coach at Iowa, lost Thomas to Illinois. The Illini assistant accused by Pearl of offering Thomas cash and a SUV was cleared of those specific allegations but the NCAA's investigation uncovered other violations at the school and Illinois was eventually slapped with the scarlet "lack of institutional control" letter.


Comments Show All Comments

Orlando Buckeye's picture

Stank, Not so Special, or anything else.  I prefer the simple, elegant (quote/unquote) "special" teams moniker.  I'll stop using the air quotes when they go one whole game without giving up a TD.

PALM BEACH BUCKEYE's picture   42 million subscribers at 36 cents per cannot equal 182.5 million.  That would be 15.12 Million.....  thanx  

tampa buckeye's picture

I'm glad 11w isn't doing my books.

Chris Lauderback's picture

Haha! There, I edited to add $0.36 "(per month)" to clarify for all of you that apparently get your cable bill annually.

BED's picture

Edit snark win!


And make it 8 on the basketball updates!

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

Chris Lauderback's picture

Sweet. Glad to have another year round basketball fan on board.

Joe Beale's picture

I was just thinking about the basketball team as I was driving in today. As excited as I am about the new players, I still think it might be a tough year due to not having an experienced point guard.  There might be some growing pains in the pre-season while the team adjusts to life without Turner as the main distributor/leader.  It would be nice if Buford stepped up to assume the leadership role; hopefully Craft will be able to handle the distribution role.

slippy's picture

But we didn't have an experienced point guard last year...

buckeyedude's picture

Buford's my boy #2 from Toledo, after Dane. Buford will Git-R-Dun.




LOL....  I kinda figured it was per month. 

BucksfanXC's picture

I hope I was included in the original 7 basketball fans.

And I'd love an article by Jason explaining the rules of women's soccer, possibly with accompanying video of that New Mexico player punching girls.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Kyle's picture

So Tennessee fans are blaming Thad Matta for "ratting out" Bruce Pearl.  It isn't just the SEC football fanbase that is paranoid delusional when it comes tOSU.

tomcollins's picture

Bruce Pearl is gonna find a loophole in the rule by selling his land to the University, so when they come visit him, it's part of campus.


Tom.. that is an outstanding Idea.  Now all OSU has to do is a find some family living space in Larkins Hall for Matta and he can do the same

REJOSU's picture

It's just too bad that Larkins Hall no longer exists!  No worries, the RPAC (Recreational & Physical Activity Center) is much better than Larkins could have ever hoped to be.  Maybe Matta can find a spot in the Woody Hayes Athletic Center near the football trophy room.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Larkins Hall is about 1/2 the reason I'm in the Navy;  more time there than in class.

"2014 National with it!!!"

ToledoBuckeye's picture

+1 for mighty Toledo Rockets comment!

"Anything easy ain't worth a damn." - Woody Hayes

Nick Buckeye's picture

BTN: We see your Erin Andrews and raise you a Melanie Collins;

ESPN: Damn

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

Melanie huh..? can i have one?

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

iball's picture

Thank you BTN for bitch slappin Time warner cable.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

osukdawg76's picture

I wouldn't kick Melanie out of bed for eating crackers, that's for sure.

I, for one, welcome our new coaching overlords.



M Man's picture

Melanie might not get kicked out of any beds, but she appears to be very, very lucky that BTN didn't kick her off the network:

"Thank you for your email.

Melanie Collins, who does sideline reporting and other work for the Big Ten Network, has been disciplined for her irresponsible statements on Twitter. Her actions were unacceptable for anyone associated with the Big Ten Network. The network regrets any unintended consequences of this statement incurred by the Forcier family, University of Michigan, its alumni and fans.

Elizabeth Conlisk
VP/Communications & University Relations
Big Ten Network

--- ORIGINAL MESSAGE --- on 8/19/2010 - 12:14 AM

RE: Melanie Collins

BuckeyeSki's picture

Its quite obvious this deserves a slap on the as.....uh...wrist

Banned from BlackShoeDiaries since 2008. Crime: Slander/Defamation of Character Judgement: Guilty

M Man's picture

Very reliable source telling me Tate Forcier requested a transfer from #Michigan this AM. NOT yet confirmed, will update as I know more.

Jason Priestas's picture

Sounds to me like she was just a bit ahead of the game.

buckeyedude's picture

Yeah, but Papa Forcier said, "don't pay attention to those transfer rumors."



Squirrel Master's picture

I'd trade my cocktail fruit for that squirrel!

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

anchorman's picture

BTN is a success! PERIOD! When Lynch blocked that SCum FG that gave App State the win, and it was on the BTN. You knew this network was going to be a success!

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

ever since the new version of 11w came up there have been a lot more spelling, grammar and math corrections. wtf. who gives a crap ppl? too much time on your hands?

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

Joe Beale's picture

No soup for you.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

I don't care the errors happen, but the grammar/spelling/math police thing is ridiculous.


not cold enough for soup anyways....

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

flipbuckeye's picture

It wouldn't be 11W without errors and the commenters that point them out.  I shudder to think of an 11W world without the term "out of hound".

grammar nazi's picture

SBB, What part of "grammar nazi" don't you understand? It's a sickness, Man.

btalbert25's picture

I have noticed it too, a lot more douchery when it comes to proofreading the writers lately.  I guess people want perfection for the money they are not paying on this free site lol.

Chris Lauderback's picture

It's all good. We don't mind a little criticism. Speaking personally, I'm still getting used to drupal's editor (totally lame excuse) so I sometimes am more worried about not screwing up my images and such so I don't proofread as closely.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

at least it breaks up paragraphs fro you with out inserting breaks manually.


F U blogger, why only me?

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

Jason Priestas's picture

I agree with Chris. None of us went to j-school or claim to be particularly great writers, but hopefully we're getting better as we go.  In the interim, I don't mind people pointing out corrections as long as they're not doing so in an overly dickish tone.

But, yeah...

KenK's picture

Interesting news on Bobcats' ST flaws. Sounds like their weaknesses match up pretty well with our weaknesses. Our coverage units and their return units should make for some entertaining viewing.

Johnny Hooker: "He's not as tough as he thinks". Henry Gondorff: "Neither are we".

Another Jason's picture

Sounds like a win for us - if they can't catch the ball, we don't have to tackle them!

poguemahone's picture

The Big Ten Network is utterly unwatchable between April (depending on how deep Big Ten teams go in the tournament) until about mid-August

You'd think that with hundreds of hours of classic Big Ten football and basketball games, they could put on something more compelling than the usual assorted mix of campus programming (which nobody watches) and Women's Thumb Wrestling.

And even the network's coverage of football is still largely awful. Gerry Dinardo, Chris Martin, and Wayne Larrivee were broadcasting nobodies for a reason before the Big Ten came along. About the only likable persona on the network, aside from Gus Johnson, is Dave Revsine. Everyone else is either reprehensibly stupid (DiNardo, Martin) or boring (Larrivee).

TL;DR: I'm glad, I guess, the network is breaking the bank, but I'm not sure the success is commensurate to the quality of programming.


btalbert25's picture

I may be one of the only ones, but I feel that Gus Johnson is extremely over rated too.  I thought it was a big joke when people where carrying on about how awesome he was last year.  He's a little too over the top for me.  Every play doesn't need the enthusiasm as a buzzer beater to win the championship.

Luke's picture

I'm beyond sick of him. His excitement now strikes me as horribly disingenuous.

Irricoir's picture

I have nothing to say other than, "Damn, she is fine!" I'm not even fond of blondes either.

I don't always take names when I kick ass but when I do, they most often belong to a Wolverine.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

don't worry, she's not really blonde.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST