The ACC Network won’t be fully functional for a few years, but once it is, Florida State athletic director Stan Wilcox says it could bring in upwards of $15 million per year for conference members.
The conference, which is coming off of a signature year with Clemson’s national championship, Florida State’s Orange Bowl victory, and Lamar Jackson’s Heisman campaign (as well as the normal basketball success) lags behind the Big Ten and SEC in revenues, but could close the gap considerably when it gets the linear network up-and-running.
According to 247Sports, ACC member schools could be looking at an additional $15 million per year when all is said and done, which would close the gap with those two other leagues (though, they will likely continue to increase revenue as well). From Florida State athletic director Stan Wilcox:
Revenues will jump once the “linear” ACC Network launches in the fall of 2019. Wilcox said the ACC’s projections have indicated that the distribution per school will increase by $8 million-$10 million in 2019-20, and then $10 million-$15 million in future years.
“These are all projections,” Wilcox said. “It all depends on how well the network does. They are saying this network should have the same kind of return that the SEC Network has had in their first couple of years.”
$15 million may be an optimistic outlook, but either way, the ACC should be bringing in a nice chunk of change when its network is operational.
Virginia Tech athletic director Whit Babcock is also optimistic about the network’s impact.
From the Daily Press:
“We typically talk about what other conferences are doing,” Babcock said, “and where we’re positioned well and where we have some catching up to do. … We don’t mind overachieving and doing all we can to win, but I wouldn’t mind (SEC- and Big Ten-level money) every year just by opening the mail, and hopefully the channel will give us the upside to do that. …
“I’m confident (ESPN) will figure it out, whatever television looks like. For as far as I can see, people still want to consume sports live. That’s the one thing.”
The ACC may not reach the levels of the Big Ten and SEC, but it proved that it can compete with those leagues on the gridiron this year, and staying competitive financially is key as recruiting and facilities arms races continue to heat up.