At least according to the reports I've been googl'ing
ANDBy Brian Floyd - Editor
The Pac-12 is expected to announce a $3 billion television deal on Wednesday. If the reports are true, it will be the richest TV deal in all of college football.
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May 3, 2011 - On Wednesday, Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott will announce the conference's newest television deal, and it's expected to be the richest in all of college sports. The Pac-12, formerly the Pac-10, has lagged behind the rest of the college landscape with a paltry television deal on-par with smaller, non-BCS conferences. But now, thanks to the changing climate in the television market, Scott has struck gold, and the conference is poised to go from worst to first with a cutting-edge deal that includes more exposure and a significant bump in revenue.
Scott has been negotiating the deal through the early part of 2011, roping in Comcast, ESPN and FOX to create what amounted to a bidding war. Television rights for live sports have become a hot commodity, creating a perfect storm for the Pac-12 as Scott tried to deliver on his promise of riches. And he did, with reports indicating the deal will be worth billions, putting the Pac-12 on the level of the SEC and Big Ten in terms of revenue.
Here are a few of the details.The deal will actually be worth about $3 billion total over 12 years, or about $250 million a year and nearly $21 million per school.The latter point is important and will allow the Pac-12 to showcase its non-revenue sports in addition to ensuring every football and basketball game is televised. By adding a digital media platform, the Pac-12 is boosting its exposure significantly while embracing the latest innovations in broadcast technology.
The conference has retained all network rights and plans to start its own network with a digital media platform akin to ESPN3. More than 850 events will be broadcast between the two.
Pac-12 schools are celebrating the deal and championing Scott for his efforts to move the conference forward in just his first year on the job. From expansion to a ground-breaking deal, Scott has done well, and all 12 member institutions will be reaping the benefits very soon.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- The Pac-12 agreed to a 12-year television contract with Fox and ESPN on Tuesday worth about $3 billion, allowing the conference to quadruple its media rights fees and start its own network.
The contract, which will begin with the 2012-13 season, will be worth about $250 million per year, guaranteeing each of the 12 schools in the conference about $21 million, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract has not been announced.
The contract is expected to be formally announced at a news conference in Phoenix on Wednesday.
The Pac-12 made less than $60 million in media rights this past season but became the latest conference to take advantage of the escalating market for college sports on television.
The ACC recently signed a deal for $155 million a year and the Big 12 reached a deal with Fox that made its total annual package worth about $130 million. The Pac-10, which will be renamed the Pac-12 in July with the additions of Utah and Colorado, topped those deals, as well as the $205 million the SEC gets and the $220 million paid to the Big Ten.
Rights to some football and men's basketball games were not sold to Fox and ESPN, preserving some premium property the conference can use for a Pac-12 network to go along with Olympic and other non-revenue sports, a person close to the deal said.
Unlike the Big Ten Network, which Fox has a 49 percent ownership share in, the Pac-12 will own its entire network. That could add difficulties in terms of getting wide distributions on cable and satellite systems but allows the conference to have complete control of its content and keep all the profits if the network is as successful as the Big Ten.
The conference will also launch a digital network to show games online that aren't on ESPN or Fox.
The deal with Fox and ESPN was first reported by Sports Business Daily, while The New York Times first reported details about the network.
This deal accomplishes all three goals Commissioner Larry Scott set out heading into negotiations: increasing revenue, getting more exposure and starting a Pac-12 network to provide an outlet to broadcast non-revenue sports and to help brand the conference.
Under this deal, Fox and ESPN will split the rights to college football games. ESPN will air its games on cable as well as ABC and Fox will show its games on its broadcast network, basic cable network FX and on the Fox Sports Net regional networks.
Men's basketball games will be split mostly between ESPN and Fox Sports Net, with ESPN also getting rights to some Olympic sports that will likely be aired on ESPNU.
The two entities will alternate showing the Pac-12 football championship game and the men's basketball tournament. Fox, which will air the inaugural football title game this season, will have the first football championship under this contract in 2012, with ESPN getting the men's basketball tournament later that season, a person familiar with the deal said.
Finalizing a media rights deal is the latest step in the transformation of the conference under Scott, who took over from Tom Hansen in July 2009.
Scott spearheaded last year's expansion effort and then got the schools to agree to an equal revenue sharing plan and aggregate all of their media rights at the conference level.
That set the stage for the television negotiations, which began in earnest April 1. While Comcast/NBC was an aggressive bidder and Turner Sports also was interested, incumbents Fox and ESPN won out.
This deal means full revenue sharing will kick in as soon as this contract begins. As part of an agreement to give up their historically larger share of television revenues, Southern California and UCLA were each to receive a $2 million premium any year that the media rights did not reach $170 million.