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SLATE: The one big drawback of no Big 12 network

No news means musings.

We still think we’re better off without one, BUT...
We still think we’re better off without one, BUT...
Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Week 9,327* of our self-imposed isolation is underway, and folks are so desperate for sports that they’re taking crazy nonsense about getting them started again.

With virtually no news to report this fine Monday, your benevolent despot thought it would be a good idea to check the TV listings and see what Kansas State games might be getting replayed over the next two weeks. It was a fruitless search, which was frustrating because all sorts of other college blogs are constantly posting TV updates for big games featuring their schools.

Then the realization hit. There’s no K-State games on TV because there’s no Big 12 Network. The other conferences, with no live sports to show on their own networks, are flooding their schedule with takeover days and big contests featuring their schools.

In the past, we’ve rolled our eyes at people claiming that the Big 12’s inability and/or refusal to create their own cable network was a failing. It’s not; never mind the impending bubble (which, ironically, this pandemic may hasten due to the costs of maintaining those networks in the face of falling ad revenue), the big money is and always has been in the primary big network contracts with ESPN, FOX, et al.

But the current circumstances have dropped a spotlight on one big drawback. There’s no place to go on your television set to catch Big 12 replays. That should be a minor inconvenience for the majority of K-State fans, because Big 12 Now on ESPN+ is a thing, but... they haven’t seen fit to stock that outlet with any good vintage content, either. Unless you really want to see the 2006 Rose Bowl.

Ah, well. I guess we’ll just have to keep having watch parties. Stay tuned for details on the next one.

* - approximation

Our one piece of actual Wildcat news today comes courtesy of the Mercury’s Ryan Black, who introduces us to new scouting analyst Chuck Lillie. Part of what made the Clemson grad take the job: a hell of a sell speech by one Thomas Brent Venables, who told Lillie how awesome K-State and Manhattan are. No lie.

Finally, a quick check-in on the travails of Saint Thomas University in Minnesota. You may recall that the Tommies, who have been wrecking the D-III Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference for some time, got thrown out of the conference for being too big and too good. They received an invitation to join the Summit League, but in order to jump straight to Division I, St. Thomas will require an NCAA waiver.

Unfortunately, thanks to COVID-19, that waiver won’t come in time to allow the Tommies to move up this year. The NCAA was scheduled to hold a hearing on the matter during a committee meeting April 23-24, but that meeting has been postponed until June at the earliest.