The Pac-12 Network titans are on one side of the table, and their counterparts at DirecTV are on the other. In the center is a pile of cash. They both want it, and they both want it all. But for now, it sits.
DirecTV gambled that the opening weekend of Pac-12 football would be a pedestrian affair. Surely, a ranked Stanford team would roll San Jose State, right? So some Stanford fans would be pissed, but aren't Stanford fans always pissed? Unfortunately for DirecTV, the game turned into a nightmare.
After opening with a 14-0 lead, the Cardinal struggled the rest of the way. DirecTV execs must have tuned into their illegal European feed of the game with horror. It got so bad that San Jose State had the ball on the game's final possession, with a chance to pull the huge upset.
Fans were not happy. And since it's 2012 they took to Twitter.
Here's a small sample:
@directv the promise of directv 'everywhere' is great, the reality of it is much less so.Keep at it.
— scottro (@scottro) September 1, 2012
— Cohl Harris (@goutes01) September 1, 2012
— Cory Rudolph (@CRudolph99) September 1, 2012
— Greg Planellas (@MarriedMariner) September 1, 2012
Back to the table, the Pac-12 execs couldn't have been happier. Week 1 clearly went their way. That pile of cash is looking better.
But whose cash is it? It's certainly not the Pac-12's or DirecTV's. It's not ESPN's. It's not the NCAA's.
That cash is our cash. But they don't really care. They just want it. So the two sides are going to continue to fight, continue to posture, continue to lie. They're turning this into a political battle. And just like politics, they're fighting over who gets to keep our money, and in the meantime we can't even watch the events we're willing to pay to see.
Luckily, for us college basketball fans, football comes first. And to be honest, I don't really care that I can't watch Pac-12 football. Sure, they'll be a great finish now and again that I'd like to catch. But for the most part, meh.
But that all changes in two months. In November, basketball starts. And there are going to be some great games in the Pac-12. When that time comes, if the Pac-12 and DirecTV haven't figured things out, then I'm gone. I don't care who's right – I'm gonna watch some hoops.