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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

May 3, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Update on Pac-12 TV deals

Well, it appears the Pac-12 has done it, working out a TV deal that will be the most valuable for any conference in college sports.

Here’s an overview from Bud Withers of our staff, the AP as well as more analysis from Jon Wilner and the Sports Business Daily. Also, here’s the New York Times story, saying it will be worth $3 billion over 12 years.

ESPN and Fox will be the primary carriers of football and basketball with the conference said to also be withholding the rights to some games for its own channel.

The obvious question here is what this will mean for UW. With the money spread equally around all 12 schools, it won’t help any one school more than the other. In UW’s specific case, the added money will certainly serve as insurance, of sorts, for the Husky Stadium renovation, which the school will begin in November, a $250 million project. But as far as I know, they will not be bringing any sports back or anything like that. I wouldn’t count on that.

UPDATE — Here’s more on the TV deal from ESPN.com’s Ted Miller, and the overwhelming consensus is that the conference, and commissioner Larry Scott, hit a home run with this deal. Putting together a deal like this was at the root of expanding, and financially anyway, it appears as if the gamble will have paid off (unless you believe they would have gotten the same deal otherwise, which we may never knor for sure, but most seem to think expanding helped).

All the schools win, though the smaller schools for which this will mean a larger percentage of their revenue will win a little more. And newcomers Utah and Colorado may win the most, each going from uncertain situations to sure riches.

The fan will also win, as between the primary carriers, the conference’s own network and the digital channel, every football and men’s basketball game will be available, as should just a lot more sports programming in general (go look at the listings of the Big Ten Network as an example).

I’m not sure this will necessarily help any conference school against another in recruiting, but it should provide a little bit of a boost for the conference as a whole against other conferences, in large part allowing the Pac-12 to escape the long-held perception that it was a step behind some of the others both in quality and innovation.

George Schroeder of the Eugene Register-Guard also has some thoughts on this.

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