I am quoting numbers from analysts that know the numbers. They were both aggregate numbers. They were part of the analyses done by several people on the Big Ten expansion conversations.
The 11 million is the 2008-2009 payout. The 2009-2010 payout hasn't been made yet. The 2008-2009 payout did not include the new CBS deal (more than double) or the ESPN deal (worth 15 million to each school by itself). The 2009-2010 payout is estimated to exceed 22-24 million a school (the wash I referred to).
What you keep missing is that the SEC Network is REGIONAL. Unless you have Comcast in Maryland, you do not get the SEC Network. The Big Ten Network is NATIONAL. And the Big Ten gets choice spots on ABC/ESPN with two noon games and the ABC/ESPN slot at 3:30 plus other games.
I will repeat. There has not been a SINGLE Big Ten game that was not available NATIONALLY since the Big Ten network started. You cannot say that about the SEC.
I think this is the confusion. There are two components of the 2.25 BILLION deal between ESPN and the SEC. A large part of ESPNs programming is now guaranteed to the SEC. More football, more basketball, more baseball, etc. So, yes, the SEC Regional Network (produced by ESPN) is not national, it is more widespread than in the past, AND it carries second tier games.
We may disagree on this point, but I don't think coverage of every sport, every game matters. Its diminishing returns. Few people care if Minn-Ill is broadcast on Big Ten Network Saturday night. But... ESPN guarantees Saturday night to the SEC so even if no one cares about Kentucky-Vandy, Millions will watch it.
The Big Ten network was on DirecTV and Dish from the startup. Comcast was the big holdout. That is the only way you can claim your 3 year timeframe.
The SEC could have had that and still had their CBS and ESPN contracts. They decided to do a regional network. ESPN was willing to build the network with them (just as Fox is partners on the Big Ten network).
Plus, the Big Ten gets coverage of every damned sport. The SEC does not.
I have no idea how you can claim that visibilty for a part time network that goes on podunk stations in Mobile, AL (heart of SEC country) is more than a 24/7 channel that is only an adjunct to the same (if not better) national network coverage that the Big Ten gets.
ESPN did not pay 2.25 billion for regional networks... but for coverage on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3, GamePlan, etc... I think the confusion or issue is over what the deal was. Yes, The SEC Network is regional coverage of local sports. BUT... the big part of it is prime (and actually preferred) placement on ESPN networks. Which is huge, and national.
And here's where the gamble is.
In 10 years, if college sports grows and TV grows, the Big Ten Network looks good. But if online grows, The Big Ten owns that and if Illinois has huge online presence, they have to share that with Minnesota. This may be huge- it could be big money that makes all other conferences pale. But if it fails, that money will dry up for ALL the schools.
In 10 years, if it grows, the SEC doesn't get a penny more than their contract. But if it goes down, they still get 2.25Billion from ESPN. ESPN owns the risk. And, this doesn't affect online presence which each SEC school still owns for itself. So they left themselves an out to form an SEC online network in the future.
There's plus and minuses to both... but the SEC deal is not nearly as bad as it was made out to be...