About BIG EAST Television Agreements
Seven BIG EAST Conference members are located in the top 12 media markets (DMAs), and 12 members are located in the top 34, covering over 25 percent of all U.S. markets - by far, the largest coverage of any conference. Since its inception in 1979, the BIG EAST Conference has prided itself as a creative innovator in television and publicity concepts.
The BIG EAST has continued that tradition today by providing student-athletes at its 16 member institutions with unparalleled exposure through new landmark agreements with its two primary television partners: ESPN and CBS Sports. The specifics from each of the league's television agreements are outlined below.
BIG EAST Inks Big Deals With ESPN
The 2012-13 academic year marks the final year of a six-year agreement between the BIG EAST Conference and ESPN, Inc. for men's and women's basketball and the second of a six-year term for football. Both founded in 1979, ESPN and the BIG EAST have enjoyed a relationship that has existed for the lives of both entities. The current landmark men's and women's basketball and football contracts have ensured a long-term continuation of that relationship. The number of guaranteed BIG EAST Conference appearances in these sports has been expanded to unprecedented levels under these pacts. Further, they ensure that the BIG EAST will continue to have a solid foothold in national and regional television and new media exposure in the foreseeable future.
In addition, the Conference's agreement with ESPN has provided many of its Olympic sports student-athletes with unprecedented national exposure on ESPN's all-college-sports network, ESPNU.
SNY To Offer BIG EAST Programming
SportsNet New York (SNY) and ESPN, in conjunction with the BIG EAST Conference, recently announced a comprehensive multi-year partnership which will feature over 800 hours of BIG EAST Conference programming - including more than 125 football and men's and women's basketball games. SNY, which is tabbed as "the official television home of the BIG EAST Conference" in the New York region, delivers unprecedented access to coaches, players and their schools to BIG EAST fans in the New York Metropolitan area.
CBS SPORTS PARTNERSHIP
BIG EAST, CBS Reach Contract Extension
Now in its 28th year, the BIG EAST Conference is proud to have the longest standing continuous relationship with CBS Sports of any conference in the country. CBS Sports, which holds the exclusive rights to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship through at least 2011, fueled the BIG EAST's rapid ascent on the national college basketball scene when it began telecasting men's basketball games involving conference teams in 1981-82, just the third year of existence for the league.
The BIG EAST and CBS Sports announced in June of 2006 an increase inthe number of contests involving conference men's basketball teams from a minimum of 11 to 14 each season, and ensure that the BIG EAST would be one of a few conferences with guaranteed exposure in women's basketball on CBS Sports each year. The agreement began in 2007-08 and will continue through 2012-13.
CBS SPORTS NETWORK PARTNERSHIP
The BIG EAST Conference and CBS Sports Network (formerly CBS College Sports) have been partners since the 2002-03 academic year, and its current agreement will ensure that relationship continues through 2012-2013. CBS Sports Network provides significant national exposure for the BIG EAST Conference's Olympic sports student-athletes during the regular season and in conference championship competition.