KU, TWC Ink Deal For Tier-3 Rights Atlanta Radio Hosts Fired Over Morning Bit Mets, SNY Look For Audience Boost Media Notes NBA Finals Game 5 Overnight Down 9.5% U.S. Open Finale Gets 6.1 Overnight Scott Pioli Signs On As NBC Analyst NBC Affil Hears About Move To Pre-empt NHL ABC Earns 12.0 Overnight For Game 4 Dodgers Would Retain $6B Under Tentative TV Deal
Upcoming Conferences and Events
SBD/Issue 41/Sports Media
ESPN, UT Reportedly Reach Deal To Distribute Longhorn Network
Published November 8, 2010
|ESPN Deal For Longhorn Network Would
Guarantee Texas An Extra $12M Per Year
The Univ. of Texas has reached an agreement with ESPN "to distribute the Longhorn Network on cable systems in the fall of 2011," according to sources cited by Chip Brown of ORANGEBLOODS.com. The sources indicated that the deal "is for 10 years and guarantees Texas $12 million annually on top of the TV revenue UT would receive as part of the Big 12's current television contracts with ABC/ESPN and Fox." Texas is expected to earn roughly $17M in '11-12 and $20M beginning in '12-13 "just from its portion of the Big 12 television money," based on projections for the conference's new cable TV package. Sources said that the ESPN-Texas pact includes a $10M "payment up front." The sources noted that it also would make UT the "top TV revenue-producing school in the country," earning close to $30M next year in TV revenue and more than $32M beginning in '12-13. Fox reportedly had "guaranteed Texas $2 million per year to distribute the Longhorn Network to cable systems that included at least 500,000 viewers." But sources indicated that ESPN then "came in and provided a bid six times larger with a viewership that reaches from coast-to-coast" (ORANGEBLOODS.com, 11/5).
GIVE 'EM SOMETHING TO TALK ABOUT: In Austin, John Maher reported the Longhorn Network "will be discussed, and likely acted upon," by the UT System Board of Regents on Wednesday and Thursday. University officials have said that the network, "which has been in the planning stage for three years, could launch" next August. The Longhorn Network would be the "first sports-centric network for a university," and it would be patterned "along the lines of the Big Ten Network." The Longhorn Network "would have third-tier programming," but UT AD DeLoss Dodds "has asked the Big 12 to be allowed to air one football game," and a "smattering of men's basketball games should also be available" (AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN, 11/6).