Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Mike Aresco saying all the right things

Behind closed doors one would have to assume that American Athletic Conference commissioner Mike Aresco can't be loving the rumblings that the five major conferences could break off on their own leaving the AAC in jeopardy of being left behind.

However, at his address at media day he put on a brave face in addressing the latest obstacle he has faced since becoming commissioner of the Big East and now The American.

Where's what he had to say:

"Here is where we stand. Whatever the highest level of Division I is in the future, we expect to be part of it. And if a fourth division materializes, and of course we do not know whether that will happen, there are many issues attached to it that obviously have to be vetted. The American Athletic Conference belongs in it. Not because we say we do, but because the empirical indices say we do.

"Whether it's the size of our athletic budgets or our athletic revenues, whether it's the result of - whether our football results on the field, which I described to you in recent years, whether it's the size and importance of our markets, and we have very significant markets as you know in our conference, whether it's the heritage of our being a BCS conference, whether it's the heritage of other schools who participated in the old Southwest Conference when it would have been considered a BCS conference, whether it's the alignment of our  goals with those of the conferences that are being called the power five conferences, whether it's the
size of our stadiums, our attendance, our investment in facilities -- Houston and Tulane are building new stadiums, for example. Other schools in our conference are upgrading their facilities.

"We all need more detail as what such a fourth division might entail, how it would be governed, the costs associated with it. There's been a lot of discussion about it but there aren't really a lot of hard details at this point. Our presidents and our athletic directors will weigh in once more is known. But our strong indication is to do what is necessary to be part of such a division if restructuring occurs.

"Despite recent reports, nothing has been decided, discussions are ongoing. Representation on this committee should be a function of fairness and common sense and I believe fairness and common sense will prevail. If there is to be conference representation on the committee, then each of the ten conferences in the room should be represented along with the distinguished at-large group of individuals being considered."


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