USC football was officially announced to be playing Oregon State at 6:30 p.m. PST next Saturday on the Pac-12 Network. Yes, the Pac-12 scheduled what's likely to be the best game of the week for them to be on a network that half the audience won't be able to see, and at an awful 6:30 p.m. time slot where the East Coast will be asleep for.
The other Pac-12 games that week (Week 4) are: Utah at Arizona State, Oregon at Washington State, Arizona at California, UCLA at Colorado, and Stanford at Washington. The fact that USC-Oregon State, which will likely be a matchup of two 3-0 teams facing off by then, with one of them in USC being a likely top 10 team, is given this scheduling is nothing short of ridiculous.
Every other game deserves that unfortunate time slot over this USC-Oregon State matchup, and this matchup is a perfect opportunity to showcase the Pac-12 to a national audience on a national network. Instead, nobody will be watching a game between the current best team in the Pac-12 (that happens to be a blue blood), and what's probably a top four Pac-12 team in OSU right now.
This is exactly why USC football is leaving the Pac-12.
And this is exactly why the Pac-12 doesn't earn enough money for USC football to have reason to stay. When going with an equal revenue sharing model like the Pac-12 does, the conference needs to make as much money as possible. With this awful Pac-12 Network media deal in place, that's not possible.
Then, though, the Pac can potentially do some damage control by putting the best game on a national network to where the conference can gain more exposure and take advantage of that exposure and television opportunities for the conference. Because they routinely whiff on decisions like this, though, the conference doesn't progress when terrible decisions like these are made.
And since the conference isn't making any money, USC needs to be getting their fair share of what they're bringing in, which is a lot more than any other program. With equal-revenue sharing in a conference that's not bringing much in, though, USC ends up not getting what's keeping the Pac-12 alive. They're getting as much as the Washington State's of the world, which isn't fair at all.
Therefore, SC is better off in a conference in the Big Ten that doesn't make terrible decisions to stunt the growth of the conference and bank account. If equal-revenue sharing is going to be the conference model, the conference needs to be making that pie that the programs are sharing as big as it can possibly be.
Also, what does this mean to Oregon State? They're likely going to be 3-0 (and maybe ranked) with a chance to upset the conference blue blood and likely top 10 team at home, like they've literally done before, and now don't get the chance to showcase that to the world? No wonder the Beavers don't bring in much revenue to the conference. They're not given the chance even when they deserve it.
This is an embarrassing decision from the Pac, and the epitome of why USC needs to leave and is. Thank goodness that SC doesn't need to worry about this in 2024, when they are in the Big Ten and have a conference working towards everyone's best interests.