John Ourand of SportsBusiness Daily goes into some detail into the new XFL TV deal. From game announcers, streaming rights, to production costs and lessoned learned from the failed AAF.
Here are some highlights
- XFL execs believe their best chance for success is having games in front of the biggest possible TV audience.
- 24 of the XFL’s 43 games to be on broadcast TV.
- The networks are not paying a rights fee. The deal is not like the NFL’s TV deals.
- ESPN and Fox are picking up production costs of games, which runs around $400,000 per game.
- ESPN will televise the championship on Sunday, April 26, one day after the NFL draft.
- The XFL will handle sponsorships at the venue.
- ESPN and Fox will hold streaming rights to XFL games.
- The ABC and FOX will cross-promote games during their broadcasts.
- All four networks will pick their game announcers.
- Lots of lessons learned from the failed AAF helped form parts of this deal.
TV Networks Making Big Push For Spring Football
Burke Magnus ESPN Exec VP/Programming & Scheduling told Ourand “Spring football is going to work. The combination of Vince McMahon, WWE, Fox and Disney is an incredible one to take a really hard run at this and see if that’s not the combination that finally makes it work.”
Fox and ESPN are already heavily partnered with the NFL. A successful XFL launch could impact TV negotiations with the NFL in the future. The NFL for sure will be watching how this all plays out. This deal also benefits the networks in case there is an NFL lockout in 2021. Fans will still want their football, and the XFL and TV networks could deliver it.
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