Reports: ESPN offered Pac-12 media deal in fall 2022


The Pac-12 Conference and ESPN could be in a different scenario right now. 

According to John Canzano, ESPN offered the conference a deal in fall 2022 that included the Pac-12’s full media rights and production costs as well as the Pac-12 Network for $30 million per program. The Pac-12 believed it “could do much better” according to Canzano. 

Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff countered ESPN’s offer with a $50 million per-school plan, and ESPN responded with, “goodbye,” according to Canzano. 

The ESPN media deal represents a drastic change of direction that the Pac-12 has seen in recent weeks. Kliavkoff presented conference presidents and chancellors with an Apple TV-centered media agreement at $23 million per program that would’ve required subscription plans. 

When the Pac-12 met Aug. 4 to sign, and some believed they would figuratively do so “in blood,” their Grant of Rights, it did so before five additional programs announced plans to exit the conference for either the Big Ten or the Big 12

The latest round of expansion has left the Pac-12 with four member programs: Cal, Oregon State, Stanford and Washington State. 

Fox wasn’t chomping at the bit to pursue a media agreement with the Pac-12, according to Canzano. 

Once the Big Ten pursued the additions of Oregon and Washington, Fox, which is included in the Big Ten’s recently signed media deal in 2022, stood pat with the Pac-12 while the Ducks and Huskies agreed to receive a full share of the Big Ten’s “subsequent TV negotiation (in 2030)” according to Canzano. 

What’s left of the Pac-12 remains to be determined regarding its four programs. It could merge with the Mountain West Conference, something the latter has been receptive to and is reportedly “on standby” while other conferences such as the Atlantic Coast Conference decides its role in further conference realignment.