Jon Wilner's Pac-12 Hotline is brought to The Seattle Times through a partnership with the Bay Area News Group. Wilner has been covering college athletics for decades and is a voter in the basketball and football AP polls, as well as the Heisman trophy. He shares his expert analysis and opinions on the conference for the Pac-12 Hotline.

Pac-12 leadership is gathering in Scottsdale this week for the conference’s annual spring meetings, the only time all year that athletic directors, football coaches and conference executives are together.

The agenda is meaty, but the most pressing issue of all won’t get resolved: The Pac-12’s attempt to secure an equity partner willing to purchase a stake in the conference’s media rights in exchange for $750 million in cash.

That colossus of an initiative must be approved by the presidents and chancellors, and they aren’t in Scottsdale. (Best guess: The equity sale won’t be voted on until late spring or early summer.)

Nor, we should add, are the basketball coaches in attendance this week; they met as a group at the Final Four in Minneapolis.

As is always the case, the spring meetings are for reviewing strategic initiatives across all sports, assessing policy changes/NCAA legislation for the upcoming year, and receiving updates from TV partners on scheduling matters.

But the agenda includes several non-boilerplate items, as well:

  • Sibson Consulting will update the football coaches and athletic directors on the progress of its review of Pac-12 officiating, a process expected to last into the summer.
  • Representatives from ESPN and Fox will join the coaches and strategic communications officials from each school to discuss ways the networks and the conference can better promote each other. (This process began last spring, extended through the summer and is ongoing. Access to players and coaches for the network broadcast/production crews will undoubtedly be a key topic.)
  • The Pac-12, like all other Power Five conferences, is reworking its bowl partnerships for the postseason cycle starting in 2020. The new lineup is close to being finalized and will likely include an upgraded Las Vegas Bowl and a new game in Los Angeles.
  • Don’t be surprised if there’s news this week, either on the bowl arrangements or other conference matters that don’t involve $750 million in cash.