Paul Finebaum found the comments from Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff to be “brilliant” last week when he returned fire at the Big 12 over possible expansion and realignment.

“I thought it was brilliant for this reason, he was the man on the hot seat,” Finebaum said on his regular Monday appearance on WJOX and the “McElroy and Cubelic In the morning” program. “He was the one who helped derail the College Football Playoff without even an apology. He was part of that insane Alliance a year ago. So he was going to get a lot of questions about how could you get your pockets picked in clear daylight. Instead of taking the heat about that, he did what a smart person does, he went on the offensive and it is a battle right now.”

Finebaum described the current landscape as a survival of the fittest between the Pac-12 and Big 12 about who remains relevant. Finebaum said he was more impressed with Kliavkoff than he was with ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips, who made comments the week before that Finebaum described as Phillips “flipped the calendar back to 1985 and it seemed like Phillips was reading from a hymnal from that year. So out of touch and delusional.”

Finebaum believes that Phillips is “not ready for prime time” and he didn’t impress the presidents in previous chances to be the commissioner of the Big 10 and Pac-12. The ESPN commentator said the damage for the ACC had already been done by previous contracts, but the conference needed someone who was not robotic and out of touch in front of the cameras.