SEC says network could be ‘every bit as big’ as Big Ten’s

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To steal a line from John this morning, “The battle between the SEC and Big Ten: it not’s just for on-field breakfast anymore.”

Such is the case for the SEC’s super-secret and appropriately titled “Project X.” No, not the movie about the house party or whatever it was. The conference’s own television network.

The SEC Network will be every bit as big as the Big Ten Network,” Ole Miss athletic director Ross Bjork said Wednesday.

“If you’re using the Big Ten (model), the revenue will be significant,” added Missouri athletic director Mike Alden.

Since Alden brought it up, here’s what the SEC is up against:  Big Ten schools received $7.9 million from the Big Ten Network in 2011; this year, that total will reportedly drop to $7.2 million. Obviously, though, that’s still a lot dough. According to Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany, the  network will receive somewhere between $4-5 billion in rights fees and profits over the next 15 years of the deal. Add in a standard escalator clause and each conference member could make $15 million from the BTN by 2027, the last year of the agreement.

When you consider the product of SEC athletics, it’s not hard to believe the conference could easily get that kind of money. The additions of Missouri and Texas A&M gives the SEC more inventory. Therefore, it gives media partners more games from which to choose.

It’s “Project X” (the SEC Network) where the value of those additions are most explicitly visible.

(Hat tip: The Sporting News)