Mountain West TV Deal-Money vs. Exposure
By now you know the Mountain West Conference has a new TV deal with FOX/CBS Sports. The long standing relationship with ESPN is a done deal.
The new deal means more money but the debate comes begins when talking about ESPN exposure vs. FOX/CBS exposure.
On the surface the statistics are telling. 66 ESPN televised football games in 2019 drew one million views or more. Only 5 FOX games did likewise.
The new six year deal is worth $270 million and while the Mountain West didn't break down how much each school would get, Boise State expects to more than double it's TV take getting about 5.7 million per year.
So money is not the issue but exposure seems to be a sore spot. ESPN really promoted Boise State because the Bronco's were on a roll, had the blue field and always played well on ESPN and drew well.
Remember though, Boise State's biggest victory of all time, the game that launched a mystic over the BSU program was the Fiesta Bowl win over Oklahoma a game that aired on FOX.
Lately ESPN has relegated Boise State to late start times, 8:30 pm locally which means games were ending at 2 am east coast time, midnight in Boise and to be honest, how much exposure is that?
FOX offers 8 pm as the latest possible kickoff time. FOX has earlier windows and Boise State might just be the recipient of those opportunities. FOX is already talking about making the Florida State @ Boise State game a huge deal with a possible 10 am Boise time kickoff. Not sure how I feel about that but it's certainly a change from ESPN putting everything late at night.
Part of ESPN's bigger draw was also the schedule. Boise State has always attracted a national audience and I believe those football fans will find them on FOX or CBS just like they found them on ESPN.
Being on ESPN was important for Boise State but winning was even more important. If Boise State continues to win on FOX and CBS and continues to play the engaging, entertaining type of football the Broncos are known for fans will find them.
I've always said it really doesn't matter what channel the Superbowl airs, fans will find it and parties will embrace it. Same with Boise State. So long as the Broncos win, compete at the top of the Group of 5, they'll be relevant and part of the college football spotlight on FOX, on CBS or ESPN
Plus, now they make more money.