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UC will honor Crosstown Shootout contract despite their best efforts not to

A tale, told by John Brannen, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

NCAA Basketball: Cincinnati at Xavier
Trust but verify on all handshake deals with this guy.
Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

First, as always, the news:

If you want to watch John Brannen's performative Onanism on his webcam, click that video and be my guest. For those of you not into that, I've broken the content down below.

The first minute is pretty meaningless. After we skip through that, we get to the meat of the video: four offers UC ostensibly made Xavier to break the Shootout contract.

Just push everything back a year and then keep the rotation. Fair? Not really. Adam Kunkel doesn't get a home Shootout. Ben Stanley doesn't get a home Shootout. Every freshman from this year plays three of four Shootouts away from home. Stunningly, this went over like a lead balloon.

A swap! This offer amounts to UC saying, "we think our being in this situation sucks; we would like you to be in it instead." Uh, what? No thanks.

This one comes the closest to making sense, but it's still not super viable. Xavier has the best scheduler in the business in Mario Mercurio; would you rather give him space to work his magic, or saddle him with an obligation to play a mid-major on the road? Part of the magic of the Shootout is that you get one shot to throw your best punch, then it's over. There's no need to change that.

Huh? If you watched the video - which again, don't - you'd recall that Brannen acted like back-to-back home Shootouts was a gift to X in Offer 2, despite the second being played under pandemic conditions. Now he's offering UC the same and again acting like this is a viable offer. This offer also tells every current freshman at X that they will get a total of one home Shootout and none as upperclassmen. It's superficially a bad-faith offer.

Through the whole video, Brannen presents ideas that sound like he came up with them before he had a chance to have coffee and then acts progressively more surprised that Xavier didn't go for any of them. At the end, he tries to summon some emotion I can't identify - triumph? defiance? - and announces that he's going to go with the Shootout being at 5/3rd on December 6th. In other words, exactly what the contract dictated. He tried to weasel out of it, got slapped down, and is not attempting to play either a hero or a martyr while announcing an outcome that qualifies him as neither.

Xavier will go on the road to play the Shootout on December 6th. Next season, Cintas will host. Anything else is just noise.