FORT WORTH, TX - OCTOBER 10: Texas Christian University sophomore Zach Boring (L), and freshman Laura Dunn raise a Big XII Conference banner before a press conference in which TCU accepted an invention to join the Big XII on October 10, 2011 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
Hey TCU & West Virginia, welcome to the neighborhood.
It's such a nice neighborhood that thanks to a new Big 12 conference/ABC-ESPN and Fox TV deal, you and your new neighbors will collect $20 million a year for 13 years.
The media deal runs through 2025 and helps solidify the leagues future in a couple of ways.
The $20 million annual payout per University is on par with the current Big 10 deal and just a million behind the Pac 12 agreement. Of course this is before the SEC negotiates its new deal -- which no doubt will include an SEC network for its third tier rights.
Still it's a lot of money, perhaps more than enough to slow down any talk of expansion in the near future. No word on any clauses calling for renegotiation should the league expand to 12 by adding a program like Florida State.
Right now it's a neat, clean drive to the Conference Title, with no detours to a Championship game. With the advent of the Champions Bowl (between the SEC and the Big 12) adding a few million a year beginning in 2014, other Big 12 schools might go along with Texas and OU who don't care for a conference championship game, but would rather stick with the round-robin schedule to determine the winner of the league.
The contract also solidifies the leagues survival for the term of the contract with a "Grant of Rights" clause. This part of the contract is essentially a "poison pill" for any member thinking of jumping to another conference.
Should any Big 12 school try to leave to another conference in the next 13 years, that school's media rights, including revenue, would remain with the Big 12 and not their new conference.
The contract also ensures that every league game will be on one of the networks, which should also limit the Longhorn Network to non-conference games for live broadcasts.