After months of negotiations, the Pac-12 this week presented teams with a media rights deal. According to ESPN’s Pete Thamel and Heather Dinich, this deal was for a primary streaming partnership with Apple TV+. Now though, that deal is already in trouble as three schools have reportedly taken deals to leave the Pac-12, and more schools are expected to jump ship. This has reportedly created new issues for the planned Apple TV+ Pac-12 streaming service.
So far Colorado, Washinton, and Oregon have all reportedly or officially accepted deals to the Big Ten and Big 12. It is also reported that Arizona, Arizona State, and Utah are all considering the Big 12.
It has been rumored that teams in the Pac-12 could make as little as $20 million per year with this new Apple TV+ deal. That is a hard offer to accept for teams like Arizona, who reportedly are looking at the Big 12 a move that could make them $31.7 million per year or more in the Big Ten.
Apple TV+ reportedly sees Pac-12 football and basketball as a way to help grow its streaming service. The Pac-12 could be offered in a very similar way to what we have seen with Apple TV+’s MLS deal. Now though will Apple even want the deal if only a handful of schools are left and many of the big-name schools have jumped ship?
There is still an open door for The CW to get some of the TV rights, but exactly how that will work out is unknown at this time. The CW recently reached a deal to air a handful of ACC football and basketball games. This would help it expand its sports brand, which has recently reached deals with LIV Golf, and NASCAR.
This new media rights deal for Pac-12 football and basketball are scheduled to begin in 2024. Any team planning to leave the Pac-12 will need to wait until the summer of 2024. For now, the question maybe will there even be a Pac-12 soon if more schools leave?