After months of rumblings and speculation, the Big Ten Conference announced the full details of their seismic media rights agreement Thursday morning.
In a statement, the conference claimed the various deals would provide “unprecedented access” and “greater exposure than any other collegiate sports conference in history.”
“These landmark media rights agreements are the most comprehensive in all of college sports and further strengthen the tradition of the Big Ten Conference,” the statement said.
The agreements, which start July 1, 2023, have a seismic effect on the airing of Big Ten football. As previously reported, the Big Ten will have its football package now spread across five different networks: Fox, Big Ten Network, CBS and NBC on linear television, and NBC’s Peacock service for online streaming.
The deal is reportedly worth $7 billion.
At the full strength of the deal, CBS will air up to 15 football games a season — including an afternoon game on Black Friday — while FOX and NBC will air between 14 and 16 each year. Peacock will be the exclusive streaming home of eight games per season.
For the first time, the Big Ten Football Championship will not air exclusively on FOX, as CBS will air the game in 2024 and 2028, while NBC will be the television host in 2026.
“The Big Ten Conference media rights agreements are more than just dollars and deals,” Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said. “They are a mechanism to provide stability and maximum exposure for our student-athletes, member institutions and partners during these uncertain times in collegiate athletics.
“We are very grateful to our world-class media partners for recognizing the strength of the Big Ten Conference brand and providing the incredible resources we need for our student-athletes to compete at the very highest levels, and to achieve their academic and athletics goals.”
On the court, the Big Ten men’s and women’s basketball seasons will be split between CBS, Big Ten Network and FOX, with CBS airing both the men’s tournament semifinals and finals, as well as the women’s tournament final for the first time.
All football and basketball broadcasts on CBS will be simulcast on Paramount+.
While the deal makes mention of Olympic and non-revenue sports, it’s unclear at press time what will happen to the Big Ten Network’s streaming service BTN+, and whether it will be potentially folded into one or both of Peacock and Paramount+. The media rights agreement will begin with the 2023-24 athletic season and continue through the 2029-30 season.