And it’s not entirely to do with money. At least today’s money. And it dates back to Mike Slive as SEC commissioner.
When Misery and TAM joined the SEC, they redid the deal with ESPN to create the SEC Network and get more money. Then they tried to redo the deal with CBS, but CBS wouldn’t bite. The only concession CBS made is that SECN could have a 3 p.m. game at the same time Verne and Gary were calling an Alabama game somewhere.
In so doing, CBS POd SEC administrators and presidents, and killed their chances of renewing after 2023. Which probably was a “so what” decision by CBS because they got 10 more years of rights at a bargain basement price of $55 million a year.
But the SEC locking down ESPN/ABC/Disney in 2020 prompted the Big 12 to look into redoing its own media deals, and when the numbers they heard weren’t what they wanted, that helped prompt the Fallopians and Mobilehoma to jump ship.
This, and a lot more, can be found here:
Not in here, but I can guarantee you that when NBC is showing B1G games at 6:30 or whatever, ABC will have an SEC game up against it. Maybe against CBS at 2:30 too. It’s not an ESPN deal, it’s a Disney deal.
I agree that ABC is going to be showing a lot of SEC games in the 2:30/6:30 slots, and most weeks will be able to have a third quality SEC game in the ESPN early slot. If Disney still does business with the PAC/Big XII/ACC, it won’t be hard to put three good games on every week, with a fourth good game in the 11:00 slot most weeks as an alternative to Fox.
The problem for the Big Ten is coming up with three attractive games every week for national audiences. Too many of its second level teams (Iowa, Wisconsin, Penn State) play a boring brand of offensive football that won’t generate a lot of national interest unless they are playing Ohio State, Michigan or USC, and the conference has too many schools that are okay with being mediocre in football.
It does mention that. It states the SEC/Disney deal has provisions for a pro rata increase, meaning ESPN will pay enough that the 16-way split will work out the same per team as the 14-way split. However, it speculates that Disney will reopen it because, with the Big Ten gone, they really, really want to keep the SEC happy and on board, and a few million extra greenbacks are a great way to do that.
The deal is IIRC $300 million a year, which basically gets divided 15 ways (the schools and the league office), so everybody gets about $20 million. So pro rata for EOE and Zero U would add another $40 million to that. We can grease the wheels for that reopening by giving them more high-quality inventory (like 9 SEC games instead of 8, more Power 5 NC games, etc.). And maybe they bump it up where the per-school is $30M instead of $20M (none of this takes into account SECN, which is kind of its own deal; the SEC and Disney split the profits there down the middle).
The $300M deal is in addition to the existing contract with ESPN and thus the SEC Network. We were already getting around $54M check from the league for our TV rights and bowl money, so it’s an additional $20M on top of that.
I have zero opinion on the business side of this. I do have an opinion on the overall production value and the commentary teams. And on that account I MUCH prefer ESPN/ABC etc. Some may disagree. But I always am a tad bummed when CBS is carrying us.
I’m kind of neutral on Gary Danielson… Sometimes he’s good, but other times he gets locked in on what particular players are doing and misses other things going on in the game. I wonder if that’s because that’s the guys in the production meeting have decided beforehand to feature some players.
Lord Voldemort mindset is alive, though the sickness will eventually be all that is on people’s minds. CBS, ESPN, these are modern day circuses.
On the lighter side, our offense looks like it will be even better than it was last season. So many weapons, QB, WR, RB, TE, OL. This could be fun.
Screw the SEC Network, it has been the Alabama Football post-season highlights & Kentucky Pre-season Basketball Network every off-season all summer for the past decade.
Then finally the weekend arrives and Marty & McGee dominates the morning through afternoon viewing…
I turned it on to watch SEC pre-season Football discussions, and about 15 minutes after the interview, I realized they were just talking to Coaches about a hunting & cooking, and then they spent 10 minutes talking about “Hillbilly Headlines.” Like, I get they’re on there to try and “relate” to SEC fans, but the whole
“We’re rednecks just like you”
shtick is teetering on offensive, but it’s mostly just ridiculous. I’m not even sure they actually provide any real insights related to SEC football. They’re more of a cultural ploy for the network, but I don’t think the network realizes that people who are watching the SEC Network are actual fans for the most part. We don’t care that Marty has a southern accent. We want to hear about our schools and our athletic programs.