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Utah Invited to Join Pac 10

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The Pac 10 Conference has officially extended an invitation to the University of Utah to become its twelfth member. A press conference is scheduled for noon on Thursday in Salt Lake City where the Ute's are expected to accept the invitation.

Utah is a solid and growing research school which fits very well with the culture of the current conference membership. Salt Lake City is the 31st largest TV market in the country and when coupled with Colorado will give the Pac 12 a footprint which dominates the region from the Pacific Ocean to the Rocky Mountains. That should give the conference the television sets needed to launch their own cable network.

A 12-team Pac-10 would split into two divisions and hold a football championship game starting in 2012. The championship game could be worth between $12 to $15 million per year. The dream of $20 million payouts for each member probably has died for now but the conference should be able to put together a deal which is very similar to what the ACC just signed which would be a much welcomed improvement for conference members.