Page last updated on Sun Aug 30 05:55:35 EDT 2015
03/11/2013 6:00 PM EDT
MVC commissioner irate over CBS blackout

AP Sports Writer

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- The commissioner of the Missouri Valley
Conference says he would rather have the tournament title game
televised on the Food Network if CBS can't guarantee it will
televise the entire game nationally.

Doug Elgin told The Associated Press on Monday that central and
northern Illinois and all of Indiana didn't see the conclusion
of Creighton's 68-65 nail-biter over Wichita State. Wichita
State shaved a 13-point deficit to one in the final minute and
Malcolm Armstead missed a potential tying 3-pointer just before
the buzzer Sunday.

"They'll never be able to make this up to us," said Elgin,
adding the conference had received "hundreds" of complaints from
irate fans. "Our concern is our most important game of the year
carries nationally - all of it. That's certainly what we
bargained for."

CBS switched some viewers to the start of Indiana's victory at
Michigan for the Big Ten title. The 10-team Missouri Valley has
four schools in the areas that missed the finish of the
championship game - Bradley, Illinois State, Indiana State and

CBS spokeswoman Jennifer Sabatelle said the decision to switch
games affected about 17 percent of the country and was made when
Creighton had a 10-point lead with 3:50 remaining at 4:05 p.m.
EDT, time for another tip-off.

"We pulled out the home territories of the Big Ten to get them
to the start of the Michigan-Indiana game," Sabatelle said. "The
overwhelming majority stayed on the Missouri Valley

CBS acquired the rights to the title game through ESPN, with the
Valley's consent.

Elgin said the finish of last year's title game, Creighton's
overtime victory over Illinois State, was pre-empted in certain
markets, too. Discussions with CBS since Sunday's game have not
been satisfying for Elgin, who called the decision "inexcusable"
and a "bitter pill to swallow" for the conference.

"I've vented a lot on this, maybe to excess," Elgin said,
referring to his Food Network crack. "I do think we want to
continue to have discussions on this and make sure our jewel is

Creighton returned to the rankings at No. 23 and had an
impressive RPI ranking of 25 after winning the conference
tournament for the second straight year and earning an automatic
NCAA tournament berth. Wichita State was ranked earlier in the
season and had an RPI of 39 and could get an at-large NCAA
tournament bid.

The Valley televises every regular-season game on Fox Sports
Midwest and via the Internet on ESPN3.

Elgin had little to say about rumors Creighton might want to
leave the Valley to join the so-called "Catholic Seven" in a
reformed Big East. He added the Valley won't be caught in the

"We respect the right of any institution to determine its own
destiny," Elgin said. "We haven't been informed of any
invitation extended or discussions made, and we're prepared to
move forward strategically if any decision is made."

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