by Jason Snell
Apple rumored to be bidding for Big Ten college football
As a part of a longer piece (subscription required) about the Big Ten conference’s secondary and streaming college football rights negotiations, The Athletic’s Scott Dochterman writes:
Amazon Prime long was considered the favorite to pick up the Big Ten’s streaming rights, but Apple TV rejoined the negotiation following the USC/UCLA expansion announcement on June 30. NBC’s Peacock also could become a standalone streaming option if the linear network wins a Big Ten package.
Fox is the primary partner of the Big Ten, and reports are that CBS and NBC are likely buying in to split up secondary rights. With ESPN and its ESPN+ streaming service apparently out of the picture, another streaming partner is probably required. CBS’s Paramount+ or NBC’s Peacock would seem to be be the most likely destination for streamed games, but Amazon and Apple are apparently in the mix as well.
With a deal with MLB, MLS, and rumors of an NFL deal, Apple’s been on a shopping spree for live-sports right. Adding college football would definitely drive another cohort of U.S. viewers to figure out how to view Apple TV+ content.