ESPN signs $80M deal to extend Rose Bowl rights

Michelle Clancy | 18-07-2012

Sports carriage rights continue to be cash cows for sports conferences and organisations, commanding a premium for exclusive broadcast rights.

ESPN has been paying the lion's share in the United States of late, and now has agreed to pay a whopping average of $80 million per year to keep broadcast rights to the Rose Bowl game from through 2026. That represents a hefty 167% increase over the current $30 million deal, which is good for another two years.
"The Rose Bowl Game is one of sport's most meaningful and celebrated events," ESPN President John Skipper said in a statement. "Extending our relationship long term with such a prestigious brand will play a significant role in the way fans continue to define ESPN as the leading destination for college football all year long."
The Pac-12 and Big Ten conferences will share the lucre. But the deal means that the annual college championship--one of the nation's most beloved American football landmarks every January--is expected to garner top TV revenue from advertising and promotions. In fact, analysts say that the $80 million price tag may even be a little low.
Sports Business Journal reported that ESPN benefitted from an exclusive 30-day negotiating window ahead of the rights being shopped to additional networks.