ESPN, SEC Strike 15-Year Deal - Broadcasting & Cable

ESPN, SEC Strike 15-Year Deal

Extension comes a few weeks after CBS, SEC strike similar agreement.
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Just a few weeks after CBS Sports and the Southeastern Conference inked a 15-year contract extension, ESPN said Monday that it too has signed a 15 year deal with the college sports conference.

While CBS will remain the exclusive broadcast partner of SEC football and basketball games, ESPN and all of its properties will be showing more than 5,500 SEC events. In addition, ESPN’s broadcast sister network ABC will be showing the semifinals and championship basketball games under the ESPN on ABC banner.

 “The SEC delivers tremendous quality and depth and a devoted, widespread fan base,” ESPN president George Bodenheimer said in announcing the deal. “This historic deal will offer fans more SEC access than ever before through every form of media that exists today or may be developed during the life of this long-term arrangement. We applaud the leadership of the conference as well as these great academic and athletic institutions for supporting this groundbreaking collaboration.”

The deal also sets up a college sports showdown of sorts, with ESPNU, the company’s college sports network, having access to exclusive SEC telecasts. CBS College Sports, ESPNU’s primary competitor has the rights to simulcast select SEC games as part of its parent company’s deal.

ESPN will have extensive multimedia rights, including simulcasts on ESPN360.com and on ESPN Mobile TV, as well as expanded rights for ESPN.com.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

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