Big Ten win $7 billion, NFL-style TV deal

The Big Ten’s new $7 billion media rights deal will air the conference’s top football games on three major networks every week, creating an NFL-style TV schedule on Saturdays.

Big Ten announced Thursday that it has reached a seven-year agreement with Fox, CBS, and NBC to share rights to the conference’s football and basketball games.

The deal, which takes effect in 2023 and expires in 2030, will eventually allow the 16 member universities to share more than $1 billion a year shortly after the conference, a person familiar with the terms told The Associated Press. .

The person, who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because officials at Big Ten and the network did not disclose financial details, said the significant increase in revenue to the conference would not occur until the third year of the deal. , increasing gradually over the last five years.

“I think what it does is give us the opportunity to continue to do what we need to do to take care of our student-athletes, strengthen our organization and build our program. said Big Ten Commissioner Kevin. Warren told his AP.

The Big Ten currently has 14 members and spans from Rutgers and Maryland on the East Coast to Nebraska in the Midwest and covers the nation’s largest media markets, including New York, Philadelphia and Chicago.

In 2024, Southern California and UCLA will join the Big Ten, with the Los Angeles market joining their footsteps.

After a 40-year relationship, ESPN has fallen out of the Big Ten football equation. The league is set to lock down three key time slots with network partners.

Fox, which has shared rights to the Big Ten with ESPN since 2017 and owns a majority stake in the Big Ten Network, will continue to feature noon Eastern time as its main game of the day.

Fox and its cable network FS1 will have rights to over 20 football games and at least 45 men’s and women’s basketball games.

Beginning in 2024, CBS will transition Southeastern Conference games at 3:30 p.m. ET to ABC to replace them with Big Ten games.

From 2024 to 2029, CBS will broadcast 14-15 Big Ten football games in a single season, including the Black Friday games. Unlike its long-standing deal with the SEC, CBS is not guaranteed a selection of the first football game each week with the Big Ten. Fox, CBS, and NBC host drafts of the game, with each network giving first-choice opportunities on certain weeks.

In 2023, CBS will have 7 Big Ten Games, but the SEC is still happening on CBS at 3:30 PM ET. The network will continue to be home to the Big Ten men’s basketball, including conference tournament semifinals and finals, and will begin broadcasting the women’s basketball tournament championship.

“When we did our financial analysis and looked at the major markets even before USC and UCLA and the national footprint of the Big Ten, it was a very attractive deal for us. I think it’s unprecedented.It’s the biggest deal in the history of college football.”

Beginning in 2023, NBC will launch “Big Ten Saturday Nights” in prime time, with 15-16 games each season. The deal with NBC also includes eight football games and dozens of men’s and women’s basketball games per season, streamed exclusively on Peacock, the network’s online subscription service. NBC also has a long-standing broadcasting deal with the University of Notre Dame, which has nothing to do with the conference.

Each network will air at least one Big Ten championship football game during the trading period, with Fox securing the rights to four (2023, ’25, ’27 and ’29).

Warren has served as an executive in the front offices of three NFL teams for over 20 years. He said the Big Ten’s vision for the new broadcasting deal is modeled after NFL Sundays, three consecutive marquee games on three different networks, broadcast from noon to nearly midnight in the East.

“Where we are in the Big Ten, we have an institution that can do that, so I thought we had a very unique opportunity. We had the foundation and were in a position to do something really unique with three strong brands: Fox, CBS and NBC.”

Big Ten’s tie-in with the three traditional networks shows that while streaming has potential in the future, linear TV isn’t dead.

“It may be dying in certain aspects. You could say things like scripted dramas. Sitcoms. But when it comes to sports and news, it’s stronger than ever,” said Fox Sports Network. Former Chairman Bob Thompson said.

“Conferences and leagues are a little reluctant to make the big leap from the broad distribution of broadcast television,” he added. , the number of people who see and use them is still relatively small. “


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