As the Pac-10 coaches tour the Big Apple (and nearby media compounds with four initials), conference commissioner Larry Scott is the man of the hour. It was just a year ago Scott oversaw his first football media day. A lot has changed since then. Read on.
• Scott made a trip up the elevator last year to the hospitality suite where he hobnobbed with the big names in West Coast sports journalism (and people like me). He was quiet, non-committal. Articulate, yes, but close to the vest. Just like he should have been. He mentioned his experience on the women’s tennis tour, chit-chatted about wanting to shake things up in the conference and that was about it. Some 365 days later, shaking things up seems to be the norm. The conference has two new members coming in (in case you missed it, Colorado and Utah) in the next year or two. There was a swing at building a 16-team western super conference, but that whiffed, thanks to a Texas slow curve ball. And now there is a tour of the East Coast (you can see the schedule here), a new logo, new energy and even a new site for the media day – the Rose Bowl. All this change has caught the eye of the national media. SI.com has a story (and you can see the new logo if you’ve missed it before), the New York Times as well. If you want to know more about Larry Scott, the Mercury New’s Jon Wilner has a good profile today. At the end of this week, following the media day on Thursday, the conference athletic directors will meet with Scott and begin to pound out a blueprint for the future. The looming 12-team conference will necessitate more change. Football divisions is the big issue, but revenue sharing (a big issue for WSU and athletic director Bill Moos) and other items will be discussed. As the weeks go by, the Pac-10 will begin to look like a 21st Century conference.
• UPDATE: This shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone. The Pac-10 will officially become the Pac-12 after Utah and Colorado join.
• That’s all for this morning. We’re headed down to Los Angeles this afternoon, but we’ll update the blog if needed. Until then …