Pac-12 announces parting with commissioner Larry Scott
A big change is coming to the Power 5. On Wednesday night, the Pac-12 announced that commissioner Larry Scott is out.
The announcement from the Pac-12 says the parting comes following ongoing discussions between its governing executive committee, its presidents and Scott, it was mutually agreed that the Commissioner would not seek a new contract. The decision was made well in advance of next year’s contract expiration, in part, to allow a new commissioner to be in place to negotiate and maximize the Conference’s next important long-term media rights agreement, per the conference.
The Pac-12 executive committee, including University of Oregon President Michael Schill as chair; Kirk H. Schulz, Washington State University president; and Ana Mari Cauce, president of the University of Washington, will immediately commence a national search for Scott’s replacement as commissioner, the conference says.
“We appreciate Larry’s pioneering efforts in growing the conference by adding new competitive university programs and accelerating the Pac-12 to television network parity with the other conferences,” said Schill. “At one point, our television agreement was the most lucrative in the nation and the debut of the Pac-12 Network helped deliver our championship brand to US and global markets on traditional and digital platforms. That said, the intercollegiate athletics marketplace doesn’t remain static and now is a good time to bring in a new leader who will help us develop our go-forward strategy.”
Scott, whose current term expires in 2022, said this time is right for several reasons: “I was in pro sports for 20 years, I’ve now been in college athletics for more than 10 years, and now is a great time in my life to pursue other exciting opportunities. This moment, when college athletics are moving in a new direction and with the Conference soon commencing the next round of media negotiations, it seems the right time to make a change. It is important that the conference be able to put in place the person who will negotiate and carry out that next agreement. Based on the recent robust valuation and marketplace interest we’ve received from traditional and nontraditional media organizations, I am confident the conference is well-positioned for continued success. I appreciate the support of the Pac-12 member institutions and a very talented staff, with whom it has been my privilege to work.”
“The early read on candidates to replace Larry Scott is that they need direct college experience, football savvy, media experience and a relationship builder. Early potential names include Oliver Luck, Bernard Muir, Gloria Nevarez, Burke Magnus, Dan Radakovich and Gene Smith,” Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports reported.