Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott is going to be around for another half-decade for us. The 12 Pac-12 school presidents and chancellors decided that Scott was the person that needs to keep the Conference moving in a positive direction.
There is some discontent among the conference on how good Larry Scott has been for the Pac-12 as of late. Scott has been able to ink some very impressive TV deals with ESPN and FOX to earn the conference more important TV revenue. The Pac-12 championship game has proven to be a big money boon for the conference, and moving the Pac-12 Tournament from Los Angeles to Las Vegas appears to be a positive decision.
But there are several other issues regarding Scott. For one, the Pac-12 has yet to gain national television carriage, particularly with regards to the failure of getting a deal done with DirecTV. That has limited the profitability of the Pac-12 Networks. Almost every other college conference has made a subsequent TV deal that has been far more lucrative than the Pac-12’s current deal.
So there will be plenty of salient questions ahead. Can the Pac-12 Network break into the major sports channel packages? Will the Pac-12 get a DirecTV deal done?
Press release from the Pac-12:
Pac-12 Conference Commissioner Larry Scott will remain in his post through June 2022, the Conference announced today, extending his existing contract in recognition of the Conference’s achievements since his arrival in July of 2009 and vision for the future.
Gene D. Block, the Chancellor of UCLA and Chair of the Board of Directors of the Pac-12 Conference, comprising the 12 university presidents and chancellors that govern the Conference, said, “During Larry’s tenure, the Conference has been transformed, not only by expansion, but by innovation and excellence in almost every aspect of our activities. We believe in his bold vision for the Pac-12, and have great confidence inLarry's ability to help us write the next chapter of our Conference’s illustrious history.”
Scott’s contract extension, which was due to expire next year, continues his current roles of Commissioner and Executive Chairman of Pac-12 Enterprises until June 2022. In his seven plus years at the Pac-12, Scott oversaw a rebranding and expansion of the Conference with the addition of the University of Utah and the University of Colorado. Also during his tenure, the Conference added a football championship game, re-energized its basketball tournaments, established athletic and cultural exchange programs in China, enjoyed a resurgence of depth in football and basketball, and maintained its winning tradition as the “Conference of Champions” by leading the nation in NCAA championships every year.
Scott also delivered a landmark media rights agreement with ESPN and FOX and created Pac-12 Networks, the first-ever integrated media company owned by a collegiate conference. These developments provided much needed revenue while also dramatically increasing exposure for the conference’s athletic programs, and enabled the creation of innovative digital and mobile platforms for Pac-12 content.
At the same time, Scott and the CEO Group established a Student-Athlete Health Initiative with the 12 member universities to pursue important medical breakthroughs, and have played a leadership role toward reforming NCAA and other rules affecting student-athlete welfare.
“I am very proud of what we have been able to achieve as a Conference,” Scott said, “and I am deeply gratified by the expression of support and confidence that this extension represents. We have many challenges and opportunities ahead, and I look forward to working with our presidents, athletic directors, administrators, coaches, and student-athletes to move the Pac-12 Conference forward in the coming years.”