In The Prince, Machiavelli wrote that a ruler should actively avoid being hated by his subjects, for the favor of his subjects offers him more protection from attack than any castle or fort ever could.
If "PINK," the pink-locker-room-based Iowa football promo video released by Fox Sports this afternoon, is any indication of where our business partner is taking us, I welcome our new corporate television overlords with open arms.
Fox Sports purchased half of the Big Ten broadcasting rights, and will broadcast about half of the conference's games this year (before we even count BTN, which has always been split between Fox and the Big Ten). And as an introduction to a skeptical audience used to getting their 11 a.m. kickoffs on ESPN networks, it's an effective bit of agitprop. In the Iowa video and elsewhere -- the "Jump Around"-themed Wisconsin promo, the balloons at Nebraska, Purdue's fascination with steam trains -- they nail details that would have you believe they've been affiliated with the Big Ten since the invention of television. They even cut the Rutgers video by ten seconds to fit the standard attention span of a Rutgers fan watching football.
Yes, this will probably set off yet another round of teeth gnashing from certain corners of the University over the pink locker room. And yes, they aren't exactly right on the purpose of the pink room in the first place (Docile, yes. Disrespect? I don't think Hayden would go quite that far.) But for now, after watching pink paint drip like blood off the helmet of -- Ohio State? I'm going with Ohio State -- and a hit reel, I'm ready for football to be here. And if your stated purpose is to give me football and take my money, you can give me that clip and take my wallet every day between now and Black Friday.