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OU athletics: Bob Bowlsby says Big 12 tournament cancellations cost league 'about $6.6 million'

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Bob Bowlsby

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby speaks at the Big 12 Media Days on July 15, 2019.

Two weeks after the 2019-20 college basketball season met a premature end, Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby announced the cancellation of the conference's men's and women's tournaments cost the Big 12 "about $6.6 million" in revenue on Thursday.

Furthermore, Bowlsby said due to the NCAA tournament's cancellation, the conference lost up to an estimated $18 million.

"We're gonna take some hits there," Bowlsby said in a media teleconference. "We are in the process of determining the reductions that we'll see in our television distribution and in our sponsorship fulfillment in conjunction with both in basketball and the other championships that we have."

"All is not negative, however... We will, as a result of what we call number of participation subsidies, save $3.5 million between now and the end of the year on that."

Bowlsby said along with the $1 million supplemental basketball revenue payment the Big 12 received earlier this year, the conference will save $2.5 to $5 million from "budget variance."

"Not hosting conference championships, downsizing conference operations," he said. "There are there are some fairly good size negatives, and there are a few positives that will make a difference... It looks like the (conference's) debt could be in the $15 to $18 million range, which obviously goes directly to distribution. But it's, you know, those are round numbers, it's a little early to determine if that's, that's going to play itself out."

Bowlsby also said it's "far too early" to tell if the coronavirus pandemic will have an effect on the upcoming college football season and other fall sports.

Chandler Engelbrecht is a journalism junior and the Daily's assistant sports editor. He currently covers OU football and has previously covered OU men's basketball, volleyball and men's gymnastics.

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