ACC, Pac 12 discusses ESPN TV partnership

ACC and Pac-12 officials are discussing a broadcast partnership with ESPN that would bring the two Power 5 leagues from opposite shores together for a mutually beneficial relationship, sources say sports illustrated.

The proposal, which is still in its infancy, heavily affects ESPN’s own ACC network. Under the plan, the ACC network — or a rebranded entity combining the two leagues — will have exclusive rights to broadcast Pac-12 games to West Coast homes via ESPN cable providers. The deal is not a merger or consolidation of the leagues, but is instead based on a media rights agreement with the world’s leading sports provider — an attempt to repay the loss of USC and UCLA to the Big Ten by Pac-12.

While the move together could include marquee-nonconference matchups from the West and East Coasts — think Clemson-Washington or Miami-Oregon — the primary reason for the partnership is TV ownership. This would replace the failed Pac-12 network with a reliable provider that can reach millions of homes in the west.

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