The future media rights to what will be left of the Big East Conference has been decided, as the institutions in the soon-to-be splintered conference has reached an agreement with ESPN.
The deal grants ESPN the worldwide distribution rights, across multiple platforms, to the coverage of the conference’s football, basketball and other sports teams through the spring of 2020. Video subscribers of ESPN will have access to the games via digital and mobile devices.
The football deal will begin in the fall of 2014 as ESPN’s current deal with the conference runs through the 201 season. The 2013-14 season will act as a bridge year for the conference’s basketball rights. Commencing in 2014-15, football, basketball and other sports will be under one agreement.
“This agreement signifies our commitment to ensuring superior content across any device for many more years,” said John Skipper, ESPN President. “Sports fans everywhere, including the schools’ most passionate followers, will enjoy our extensive multi-sport offerings.”
Commissioner Mike Aresco said, “I am delighted that the current Big East Conference, which will be renamed and rebranded, will be partnering with ESPN well into the future,” said Aresco. “The extraordinary exposure provided by the ESPN networks will give viewers the opportunity to see the exciting competition and intense rivalries that will characterize our Conference.”
From ESPN RP, here are the details of the new deal:
Complete coverage: Every conference-controlled football game will be available via a television or digital platform.
Complete Coverage: Every conference-controlled men’s basketball game will be available via a television or digital platform.
Conference Championship: The conference championship will be televised on ABC or ESPN.
Women’s Basketball: Conference-controlled women’s basketball regular-season games will appear on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and/or ESPN3. The championship of the conference tournament will be televised on ESPN or ESPN2, with the semifinals on ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU.
OTHER SPORTS: ESPN will have the rights to action from other conference-sponsored men’s and women’s sports such as baseball and softball.
ESPN OUTLETS: Rights include conference content featured across ESPN entities including exclusive live games on ESPN3. In addition, fans will be able to find select action on ESPN Deportes, ESPN International and more. All conference programming on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater will be available online via ESPNnetworks.com and on mobile devices via the Watch ESPN app to fans who receive their video subscription through an affiliated provider.
LIMITED SUBLICENSING: ESPN can sublicense conference games across all sports for regional and national distribution.