With the circuit poised to add new members, ESPN has renegotiated and extended its agreement with the Atlantic Coast Conference.
The parties, which inked a 12-year pact for the conference's basketball and football games back in 2010 covering the 2011-12 through 2022-23 academic years, now have an accord that lasts until 2026-27 and includes additional men's hoops and gridiron action, Olympic sports and sponsorship rights. It evidently also comes with a higher price tag: Sports Business Daily, citing sources, pegs the deal's value at some $3.6 billion over its term. The original deal was said to be in the $1.9 billion range.
The revised contract follows the addition of Syracuse and Pittsburgh to the ACC, beginning with the 2013-14 year. The previous pact stipulated that the agreement could be revisited if the conference's membership increased or decreased by two schools.
Under the extension, ESPN secures access to 14 more conference-controlled football games per season, including a trio of Friday games. Boston College and Syracuse will each host one game, and there will be an afternoon or evening game on Black Friday.
On the hardwood, the ACC's push to an 18-game conference men's basketball schedule and the additions of Pittsburgh and Syracuse will net 30 conference men's basketball games per year and two more conference tournament games. Additionally, more women's basketball and dozens more Olympic sports competitions will be covered on ESPN platforms representing the conference's 25, soon to be 26, sponsored sports.
The deal covers all of the ESPN's various platforms, including ESPN, ESPN on ABC, ESPN2, WatchESPN.com, ESPNU, ESPN3, ESPN 3D, ESPN Mobile TV, ESPN GamePlan, ESPN FULL COURT, ESPN Buzzer Beater/Goal Line, ESPN International, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Classic and ESPN.com.
The agreement also gives ESPN the opportunity to pursue title sponsorship rights for the first time beyond football, including the men's and women's basketball tournaments. The men's tournament, featuring perennial powers like UNC and Duke, has never been sponsored in its 59-year existence.
John Skipper, president, ESPN and co-chair, Disney Media Networks, said, "This expansion and extension of our exclusive agreement brings tremendous value to our company and to ACC fans everywhere. We look forward to showcasing this premier conference across all platforms through 2027."
"We are excited to have further enhanced our partnership with ESPN through the extension of our multimedia contract," said ACC Commissioner John Swofford.