After FOX agreed to buy up half of the Big Ten's available media rights for a reported $240 million per year, many speculated that a Big Ten/ESPN divorce could be on the horizon. FOX's move does mean big changes for the conference, but ESPN will still have a major Big Ten presence. According to a report by Sports Business Daily, ESPN is set to buy the other half of the Big Ten's package for $190 million per year over the next six years.
ESPN will buy the second half of the Big Ten’s media rights package, ending months of speculation that the two were about to sever their 50-year relationship.
ESPN will pay an average of $190 million per year over six years for essentially half the conference’s media rights package, according to several sources close to the talks. Two months ago, Fox Sports agreed to take the other half of the package for an average of $240 million per year. CBS Sports also has told the conference that it will renew its basketball-only package for $10 million per year.
FOX will air the Big Ten Championship Game, and gets first choice for games, meaning that college football fans will be flipping to the network, and not ESPN, to watch Michigan vs. Ohio State in the future.
">June 20, 2016
With the combination of FOX and ESPN's deals, the Big Ten is set to pull in $2.64 billion for its media package. On the field, you can have a very healthy debate over which conference reigns supreme, but in the bank accounts, it is hard to argue against what the Big Ten has pulled off this off-season.
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