The Atlantic Coast Conference is nearing a deal with ESPN that will allow for the creation of the ACC Network, according to Luke DeCock of the News & Observer. ACC Commissioner John Swofford is expected to discuss this issue later in the week when he speaks at the ACC football kickoff. What does the creation of this network mean for Wake Forest?
ACC Network will launch by August 2019 & ACC extends conference grant of rights thru 2036, sources told @ESPN— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) July 19, 2016
Source: ESPN to launch a digital-only, "ACC Network Plus" in Aug 2016 and a linear "ACC Network" in Aug 2019. Full story in SBD tomorrow.— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) July 19, 2016
ACC's digital network will be available to authenticated @ESPN subscribers. Can watch it thru WatchESPN app. https://t.co/Cd2d8fplTI— Michael Smith (@SmittySBJSBD) July 19, 2016
While we do not yet know specific details of the amount of revenue this deal will generate, it’s fairly safe to assume that every ACC team will see a significant boost. The ACC is currently ranked 4th in average revenue generated per school, and this deal should help them close the gap and move closer to the SEC and Big Ten.
This deal will not give Wake a competitive advantage over other ACC schools, but this only further increases the advantage that Wake will have over non-Power 5 schools.
The digital only version of the network will begin next August, with the linear version launching by August 2019. If you are an ESPN subscriber, then you will be able to watch the network on the WatchESPN app, which means that you will be able to stream the games onto your tv if you have a Google Chromecast or similar device.
Given the content that is currently on the SEC Network, I would expect that the ACC Network will broadcast a healthy portion of non-revenue sporting events, in addition to select football and basketball games. The network will also likely have original programming.
I believe this is a smart move on the ACC’s part to begin this format in a digital only version before transitioning to linear programming in 2019.
As more details come out regarding figures, we will update this piece. What are your initial thoughts on the deal?