NBC is quickly making a name for itself in the sports world as a real legitimate outlet for getting your sports fix. From the NBCSports Network which has successfully made the devoutly loyal NHL audience their own to it’s dominance of NFL coverage, NBC is quickly expanding into a real force that can challenge ESPN’s rule as a sports network titan.
But one thing it doesn’t have is a real college pull, something ESPN has somewhat struggled with when it comes to college basketball. But NBC is looking to change that, and they’re in talks with the Big East to strike a lucrative deal that would make the Peacock the primary outlet for Big East sports. The crown jewel of the deal is that NBC would retain the rights to air games for the Catholic 7, a group consisting of Georgetown, Seton Hall, DePaul, St. John’s, Providence, Villanova and Marquette.
Notre Dame, Louisville and Rutgers would be included in this deal with NBC, giving the network one of the most attractive college basketball packages currently on the air. Should they strike this deal, NBC would be ready to take on both ESPN and CBS when it comes to college basketball coverage in the future.
Right now, FOX has a $40 million deal on the table that would give them the rights to the Catholic 7 and at least one more team from a group that includes Xavier, Butler, Saint Louis, Dayton, Creighton, Richmond or VCU.
NBC’s master-plan would be to use the Big East the way ESPN did when it launched in 1979, a move that ended up paying off big for the network that now rules the sports world. Despite the conference being decimated by teams leaving over the years, NBC’s deal would give them the rights to a full complement of 18 teams including the teams that have already decided to leave.
If NBC does indeed secure the rights to the Big East and all of it’s teams currently in and out of the conference, the network plans to use it’s flagship station as a part of a massive cross promotion campaign.