The TV and radio networks controlling broadcast rights to Ohio State sporting events will pay the university $110 million over the next 10 years.
The deal announced last night is the most lucrative agreement in college sports, according to the Columbus Dispatch.
An Ohio State press release says that Cleveland-based IMG Worldwide and Columbus-based RadiOhio Inc. will together manage all publishing and broadcasting of the university’s sports, including play-by-play and coaches shows, except for rights held by the Big Ten Conference.
In addition, IMG will assume responsibility for about $18 million in production, payroll and related costs associated with the broadcasts.
Eugene Smith, Ohio State associate vice president and athletic director, said in a prepared statement that the arrangement “helps to ensure the long-term financial stability of Ohio State Athletics by continuing to fund our 36-sport program.”
IMG, a marketing, public relations and talent agency, already controls Ohio State’s publishing rights. The new agreement, which begins July 1, also gives IMG control over everything from signage inside OSU facilities to corporate sponsorships and coaches’ endorsements.
RadiOhio presently holds Ohio State’s radio rights, and its Columbus-based sports-talkers, WBNS-AM/FM, serve as flagships for the university’s athletics events. The company is a subsidiary of the parent company of the Columbus Dispatch and also operates the Ohio News Network, along with two TV stations.
Tri-state radio stations presently in the OSU network include WNIO (1390) and WBGG-FM (106.1) in Youngstown; WVLY (1370) in Wheeling; WCDK-FM (106.3) in Steubenville; and WOHI (1490) in East Liverpool.