SportsBusinessDaily.com reported Monday morning that the Big Ten and ESPN have agreed to a $190 million-per-year deal that will be in addition to the $240 million-per deal that the league already had secured from Fox Sports. CBS Sports also is in for $10 million a year for basketball games.

According to the article:

“The six-year, $2.64 billion media rights haul represents a big win for the Big Ten Conference, of course, which will see its average media rights payout nearly triple when it takes effect next fall.”

Some folks thought that ESPN would stay away from the Big Ten rights because of their recent layoffs, cost cutting, and dropping rights fees such as Conference USA. The reality is, ESPN will still dish out money, but only for those entities that they think are truly valuable and can make the company money. The Big Ten is one of them (especially with Harbaugh – Meyer, Michigan – Ohio State back in the mix). 

The six-year, $2.64 billion media rights haul represents a big win for the Big Ten Conference, of course, which will see its average media rights payout nearly triple when it takes effect next fall..

The Big Ten’s revenue in 2015 was second only to the SEC, which reported $527.4 million, distributing $32.7 million per school. The Pac-12 was just behind with $439 million in revenue, with members receiving an average of $25.1 million each.

The ACC saw a more than $100 million increase over fiscal year 2014, reporting $403.1 million in revenue and distributing an average payout of $26.4 million to each full member of the conference. The Big 12 experienced a $50 million increase, bringing its revenue for fiscal year 2015 to $304 million and per school payouts to an average of $23.3 million.

Pete’s take: Holy smokes… God Bless America!

But, this is bad news for the Big 12. Remember, it was just two years ago that the Big 12 was raving about how they paid out more per school than any other conference. Well, those days are over. This is part of the reason that the Big 12 is adding a conference championship game. Sure, there are competitive benefits, but it could also add $30-40 million overall, which is $3-4 million per team. 

We know a conference network is not happening. Those days are over, for now. The Big 12’s only way to increase their payout per team is by expanding ahead of their next contract which is up in 2025. A lot can happen between now and then, but the Big 12 is right when they say adding a Memphis or Colorado State is unlikely to do a whole lot for their value in terms of dollars and cents. 

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