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Volume 26 No. 209
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MWC's Media Rights Deal With CBS Sports, Fox "Lucrative" For Schools

Wyoming AD Tom Burman noted the Mountain West Conference's new six-year, $270M media-rights deal with CBS Sports and Fox "clearly more lucrative" than the previous pact with CBS and ESPN and called it a "good deal for the conference," according to Davis Potter of the Casper STAR-TRIBUNE. The $45M annual payments to the league come out to a little more than $4M per school. Boise State "will continue to get" an additional $1.8M as part of the deal that "allows the school to negotiate its home football games separately." Hawaii also negotiates home games through a local PPV deal that "allows the school to keep all the money from that package." Potter noted that "would leave each school's cut" just short of $4M annually, though it is still a "significant increase" from the $1.1M payout under the current contract. Burman said, "I'm guessing we're going to be slightly north of $3 million in net money, and that will probably include the third tier, which will probably be some sort of streaming." Meanwhile, the late start times "aren't going away," but that "didn't exactly catch Burman by surprise." Depending on the net, football games "could kickoff as late as" 8:00pm local time, while basketball games "could tip as late as" 9:00pm. Burman said that taking any more control over start times "would've meant leaving money on the table" (Casper STAR TRIBUNE, 1/12).

HOOP DREAMS: In San Diego, Mark Zeigler notes in the "fine print" of the contract, MWC basketball games "can be played six days per week, presumably every day but Friday." The conference has "settled into a Wednesday-and-Saturday rotation, with the occasional game flexed to Tuesday or Sunday for TV." But Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays are "off limits, allowing teams some semblance of normalcy and at least 72 hours between games." Zeigler: "Let's hope they hold CBS and Fox to that. Networks are notorious for cramming games into available broadcast windows, with little regard for competitive balance or academic consequences" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 1/13).