Big 12 Media Package Approved

The Big 12 conference has announced the signing of a 13-year media rights deal with ESPN and Fox Sports that covers both football and men's basketball.

Terms of the agreement were not announced, but it has been reported to be worth at least $2.6 billion over the life of the contract. Big 12 members schools are now positioned to be at or near the top of the earnings scale in college athletics.

Both ESPN and Fox Sports will share the broadcast rights to football and basketball games, while ESPN will be the primary rights holder of men's basketball games, including the conference tournament.

The deal, which runs through the 2024-25 season, brings agreements with ESPN and Fox Sports into synch in terms of length of contract. ESPN was previously on an eight year agreement that expired in 2016.

"The stability of the Big 12 Conference is cemented," commissioner Bob Bowlsby said in a prepared statement. "We are positioned with one of the best media rights arrangements in collegiate sports, providing the Conference and its members unprecedented revenue growth, and sports programming over two networks."

Highlights of the deal include:

  • A minimum of 25 national telecasts of football games per year. These games will be on ABC, Fox, ESPN or FX.

  • Every home Big 12 football game will be carried on either the ESPN or Fox platforms, with the option of each member school retaining the broadcast rights to one conference-controlled game per year. Those can be produced by school-owned outlets (such as the Longhorn Network) or returned to Fox for co-production.

  • The same arrangement will be in place for four men's basketball games.

  • At the reported deal amount, each Big 12 member school would net approximately $20 million per year under the new contract.


    AGREEMENT FACTS

    Terms

  • 13-year agreement.
  • 2012-13 athletic season through 2024-25. Finances

  • Combined with current revenue streams the Conference will provide annual average per institution television revenue at the highest level of college athletics.
  • Coupled with FOX agreement signed in April 2011, provides a significant increase in the Conference's television rights.

    Platforms

  • Big 12 events to be carried on various ESPN and FOX platforms including ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3, FOX, FX, FSN, Fox College Sports (FCS), and FOX Sports Digital Platforms.

    Programming

  • No warehousing of rights.
  • Institutions have option to retain rights to one home football game and a minimum of four men's basketball games per season for distribution via permitted member institution outlets and third-party licenses including the FSN Regional Networks and FOX College Sports.
  • No exclusive telecast windows, except for ESPN men's basketball "Big Monday" and "Saturday College GameDay" telecasts featuring Big 12 teams.

    Annual Football Coverage

  • Every Big 12 controlled football game.
  • ABC/ESPN: 19 games per year thru 2015, increasing to 23 games annually in 2016 (minimum 13-15 full national exposures via ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU or in combination with reverse mirror); maximum four-five games on ESPNU.
  • FOX: Approximately 38 games with minimum of six contests annually on FOX broadcast and six games on a national cable outlet.
  • Member Retained Game: One member-retained game, which must be carried on a FOX platform if returned.
  • Television partners have a maximum four six-day picks between them per season.
  • Minimum four Thursday games each season (including Labor Day weekend and Thanksgiving Day); and one Labor Day Sunday appearance.
  • Maximum of four games scheduled for 8:15 p.m. local time starts per season with the following restrictions: no program required to play more than twice; host more than once; play consecutive weekends; and six-day pick only with Conference consent.

    Annual Men's Basketball Coverage

  • ESPN to televise 100-105 games per season, with 43 games on ESPN or ESPN2 (or sublicense to ABC, CBS, FOX) including a minimum of 30 intra-conference games.
  • Up to 40 games on ESPNU.
  • Option to sublicense up to 20 games to another national cable outlet.
  • Up to six games per season for live origination on ESPN3.
  • Remaining games on broadcast syndication with Big 12 Network branding.
  • Minimum four games each season retained for individual permitted member institution outlets.
  • A collective minimum of 50 games per season designated for permitted member institution outlets and third-party licensees (any games returned to ESPN are subtracted from the 50-game threshold).

    Exposure

  • FOX Sports Media Group platforms to carry a minimum of 40 non-football events annually
  • Minimum of 31 women's basketball games per season on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU or FSMG platforms.
  • ESPN networks retain option for up to 25 additional women's basketball and/or other sports contests per season.
  • Championship events, except men's basketball, on FSMG platforms.

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