We all know how mighty the SEC is, especially in football. The power conference will launched their new network this upcoming August, right in time for the college football season. The SEC is not the first conference to have their own network, Big 10 launched theirs back in 2007, but the SEC is receiving a lot more hype for theirs. Unlike the Big 10, the SEC is partnering with a major network, the almighty ESPN. The partnership will last through 2034 and even though no financial terms have been put out there, I'm pretty sure its in the high hundred millions.
The Network will produce 1000 live events and 45 SEC football games. It will also produce 3 games a week throughout the 13 week season. ESPN/ABC has even made Brent Musburger one of the lead broadcaster along with Jesse Palmer, which ends his 23 years announcing games on ABC. Commissioner Slive has said that the network will have "a depth of content across all sports" every year but we all know football is their bread n butter.
USA Today requested to see the SEC's 2012-13 taxes and it showed that the conference raised its total revenue $41 million to cap off at $314 million in total revenue. This was also the first fiscal year with Texas A&M and Missouri apart of the conference, who both left the BIG 12 after the 2010-11 seasons. Even though they raised revenue, the SEC still was $3.4 million in the hole because they had $317 million in expenses. That was easily covered by the $46 million they had in assets, so no biggy.
Mizzou and A&M both made out by joining the SEC. Both received checks for $19.5 million after the 2012-13 fiscal year, a full $7 million more than what they received in the BIG 12 in 2010-11. Commissioner Slive also seen his base pay increase but he still makes less than ACC, PAC 12, and BIG 10 commissioners.
The SEC is currently only behind the Big 10, for most lucrative college conference, who had $315 million in revenue but I think that will change once the SEC Network is up and running. Last year the SEC made $204.2 million in radio and TV rights revenue, up from $163.3 million the year before, and that was without their own network. Now imagine what it will be like with their own network. The SEC may have million dollar commercials on their network, let the money pile up.
The worst part about all of this is the fact that the athletes don't see any of the money. Of course they see it in the free scholarship but at the end of the day, the NCAA and big conferences are selling these students' talent. I still stand behind my stance that college athletes shouldn't be paid but I also think the system needs major refining. College athletes should have a 4 year scholarship no matter what and living expenses taking care of to the point where they don't need any money. Everything should be taking care of, players should never not HOW they are going to eat. Paying them will kill the game though and that doesn't benefit none of the parties. We are witnessing history, college athletics is headed into uncharted territory and no one knows what will happen.