New B1G football media deal apparently looks like this

Starting in 2024 I think

Big Noon (Eastern) on Fox
3:30 ET on CBS (taking over the SEC spot)
Primetime on NBC
Streaming on platforms to be determined, probably including Peacock. Amazon is also in the running
And BTN and FS1
Total media revenue will exceed $1 billion a year.

Which network wasn’t mentioned? ESPN. Although the Worldwide Leader hasn’t given up, it appears likely that it will be shut out of Big Ten football for the first time in 40 years.

Which probably helps the Big 12 and Pac-12 as they negotiate new deals; ESPN has excess capacity and can’t put the Suckeyes or Meechigan in those slots. Meanwhile, the ACC remains self-screwed for the next 14 years.

Would the addition of NBC to the mix help push Notre Dame into the B1G? It’s at least possible.

If the Big Ten is not going to be on the ESPN “family” I think it’s pretty likely that ABC will take over the SEC 2:30 spot and/or switch ABC’s prime time games to SEC. I don’t see the SEC being a cable only conference, and the ACC and Big XII just don’t have enough oomph for ABC to stick with them as the sole source for games in the best Saturday slots, particularly if NBC is going to air prime time Big Ten games.

The PAC (as of now) still has the best potential late night package for ESPN/ESPN 2, which could still throw in the odd BYU Big XII home game or other odds and ends to fill in the late night slots.

The Big XII is probably going to be on the ESPN networks- a lot, as will the ACC (if it’s still around). The financial pressure on the ACC to do something different is going to be enormous, The votes to break the grant in rights could be piling up, which would pave the way for the conference to break up.

If Notre Dame does not join the Big Ten, it seems questionable whether it can generate enough revenue as an independent by sticking with an afternoon NBC game slot. It could save the ACC by joining or locking in five or six ACC games a year as part of an ABC/ESPN package. ND probably won’t join unless the ACC voids the grant of rights.

I haven’t really kept up with all the conversation about the SEC and CBS. But it sure seems to me to be a wrong move on the SEC’s part to give away the prime spot on CBS to the Big 10.

That CBS spot was huge, IMO, in making the SEC what it has become.

I know people smarter than me make these decisions, but I don’t get it.

Yeah we’ll definitely have some games on ABC, whether it’s the 2:30 spot, prime time or both.

It also occurs to me that once the media deal is done, the B1G may throw a lifeline to Stanford, Oregon, etc. They really need more western partners to make it easier on the eastern teams going west for minor sports.

CBS didn’t pay enough to keep that spot. They’re paying $55 million a year. ESPN is paying $300 million a year to replace them. That alone puts another $15 million a year on Hunter Yurachek’s desk. In other words, the SEC ain’t giving anything away, and CBS didn’t want it enough to keep it.

When the SEC decided to leave CBS, my guess was the Big Ten might pounce. Part of what I think makes the SEC on CBS broadcasts so great is the production value that highlights the great atmospheres at Alabama, LSU, Georgia, Auburn, etc. That isn’t to say the other networks don’t do that, but CBS has more cameras and does a better job mixing its sound. It will highlight the Big Ten in a new way.

Part of the SEC-ESPN agreement was to show SEC games on ABC. From how I understand it, the big difference between that agreement and the one with CBS is that the marquee games are going to be shown at night, not in the afternoon.


I could tell a huge difference between a game on CBS vs. a game on ABC. I couldn’t tell you exactly what the difference was, but it was huge.

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It made me sad when I learned the SEC games would be leaving CBS. Not only are the production values better, but CBS hasn’t been showing other college games with the exception of Army vs. Navy and one here or there from somewhere like the Mountain West. (I’m not sure exactly what other conference rights they have held.)

Being on ABC/ESPN has meant that your conference was part of the crowd. I wouldn’t mind having Herbstreit do one of our games every now and then, but games on ABC/ESPN just don’t feel as special.

Of course, I grew up back in the day excited when I would see that ABC had picked up one of our future games and it would be on TV, so I guess perspective is important. It’s nice to be able to watch all of our games. Though I fear we are all going to be extorted into subscribing to ESPN+ soon enough.

Update: Sports Business Journal, confirmed by The Athletic, is reporting that ESPN has pulled out of the negotiations with the B1G. The conference offered them a deal for seven years at a cost of $380 million a year and ESPN said no.

CBS is going to pay $350 million a year (remember they were paying the SEC $55 million). NBC will be somewhere around the same figure.

The deal will start with the 2023 season, not 2024. ESPN had been carrying the B1G since 1982.

It is massive. I am quite jealous of the Big 10. CBS’s production value of that 3:30EST game is more than a cut above of the ESPN/ABC games. Of course, they have much much much less inventory and can afford to invest into their one college football game showcase. I am hopeful Disney will step up.

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I have zero confidence in Disney stepping up.


I think you’ll be surprised, LDhog. When ESPN was doing everyone’s games, it had little incentive to try to match CBS’ production value. CBS, on the other hand, only did one game (maybe two) a week. Had plenty of reason to make it special. Now the lines are pretty clearly drawn: SEC/ABC vs. Big10/CBS. Competition for eyeballs and advertisers ratchets up. I expect an arms race between the two trying to one-up each other on production value.

Pawwwll is talking this afternoon about whether today’s news could move Texas and OU into the SEC earlier. CBS apparently plans to start using the 2:30 time spot for the Big Ten before its current contract with the SEC ends in 2024. So does ESPN/ABC take over a year early, and could that push the Orphans into our league a bit early?

I agree with LoudLoyd. I think ESPN/ABC ups its technical game to compete with CBS/NBC at 2:30 and primetime.

Hope you guys are right. The difference between CBS Saturday coverage and ESPN was huge.


Also, the package ESPN turned down from the B1G was for 13 B and C level games; Fox would get first choice for the noon ET window. $380 million (almost $30 million per game) for Fox’s leftovers? Not surprised they turned it down.

If CBS pushes the SEC out of that 2:30 spot before the contract is up, there will be a reaction from the conference, and maybe multiple reactions. Those could include legal reactions if CBS does not buy out the remainder of the contract.

At the least, the SEC is not going to allow itself to be shut out of network tv in that 2:30 spot absent a lot more prime time exposure.

There had been speculation since the ESPN/SEC deal that CBS might get out of the way before the end of the contract and make room for ESPN/ABC to carry the 2:30 window. Looks like that took a step toward happening today. Presumably that could mean the $300M ESPN payments start a year earlier.

With these high fees being paid, what will the price be for the non-network prime time games? The ESPN rates they will charge the cable and streamers will go up accordingly.

So many streaming options wonder when these streamers will blow up, and they will consolidate.

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