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Early exits for Texas, Oklahoma could help Big 12 repay members that agreed to diluted revenue upon expansion

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If an agreement is reached for Texas and Oklahoma to withdraw early from the Big 12, the agreed financial penalties associated with that withdrawal would be used to help expand the conference. The money would help replenish eight outdated Big 12 programs whose media rights payments are being diluted to help fund the arrival of four new league members.

Baylor, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas, Oklahoma, TCU and Texas Tech have agreed to share some of their media rights under existing Big 12 deals with Fox and ESPN to enable the league’s recent expansion with BYU, Cincinnati, Houston. and UCF will join the team for the 2023-24 sports season. The vote (presumably last year) was 8-0 in favor of the move, with Texas and Oklahoma abstaining, multiple sources tell CBS Sports.

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Each of the eight old Big 12 schools has agreed to waive a total of $16 million ($8 million annually in 2023-24 and 2024-2025), roughly 19% of their $42.60 annual payments, the sources said. million dollars. Each of the four new members of the Big 12 will receive between $18 million and $19 million a year, roughly 40% of the original annual allocation.

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The source added that BYU, Cincinnati, Houston and UCF will receive a full share of media rights revenues when the Big 12 launch their new deals in the fall of 2025. This full share would be a base figure of $31.6 million per year. Big 12 officials believe the total will approach $50 million per school when NCAA tournament and college football playoff revenues are added.

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If Texas and Oklahoma leave after the 2023-2024 season, they will have to pay an early termination fee as they will each forfeit at least their last year of media distribution rights. CBS Sports previously reported that Early exit fees could be up to $168 million..

However, according to industry sources, such a fine is likely to be reduced to 60-65% of the original amount. This final figure will go a long way in helping the remaining legacy Big 12 programs offset the $16 million dilutions they negotiated.

“This money [for the four new schools] has to come from somewhere, so the other contestants have to be diluted as a result of that,” former Big 12 commissioner Bob Boulsby told CBS Sports. – It’s the only place you can get money, but at the end of the day, whatever happens, the CA and Texas get the exit fees and do the grants, most likely go to reimburse the schools. It will likely balance itself pretty well.”

While there is growing hype that a deal between Texas and Oklahoma to leave the SEC early is close, there is no evidence of formal negotiations.

The programs hired SEC media adviser Alan Gold to broker the deal. The Longhorns and Sooners initially joined the Big 12 during the duration of the current deal, with new commissioner Brett Yormark taking over in August; however, their position changed about a month later, the sources say.

Rumor has it that Texas and Oklahoma don’t want to play with the four new members of the Big 12, even though they’ve already committed to staying in the league for the upcoming season. The conference is in the process of finalizing the schedule for all 14 programs.

Legacy Big 12 programs shared the money from their current distributions, knowing that Fox and ESPN probably wouldn’t pay the same amount for four new members. These schools did not bring proportional (equal) value to the existing deal. League sources said the conference did not ask its partners for more rights fees.

In 2016, the Big 12 considered applying a clause in the old contract that would have required copyright holders to pay an equal amount for any expansion. Big 12 in the end decided not to expand at that time.

For there to be any new early exit agreement, Fox had to be compensated for the loss of Texas and Oklahoma from the existing deal. (ESPN will retain Texas and Oklahoma rights as part of its deal with the SEC.) CBS Sports reported last month that compensation could come in the form of the Longhorns and Sooners playing non-conference games in Big 12 stadiums after they join the SEC.

Such an agreement was called the use of “games as currency”.

“They should have played games in [Big 12] so Fox and ESPN can have value,” an industry source told CBS Sports. “If ESPN and Fox are happy, [the Big 12] would be happy.”

In October, the Big 12 announced new contract with Fox and ESPN starting in 2025, that’s worth more than the current deal, which includes Texas and Oklahoma. The above total figure of approximately $50 million would reflect an annual increase in school rights fees of $7.5 million.


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