Aug 31, 2018; Madison, WI, USA; ESPN College Football logo on a tv camera prior to the game between the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers and Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

News Articles

Canceled bowl games cost ESPN estimated $21.7M

ESPN will lose an estimated $21.7 million in advertising revenue due to the 14 bowl games it lost due to COVID-19 issues, according to a report by Front Office Sports.

The network broadcast 36 of 41 bowl games last season, averaging 5.7 million viewers per game.

Based on 2019-20 figures, the biggest advertising losses this year are:

–Pinstripe Bowl, ESPN: $3.1 million
–Las Vegas Bowl, ABC: $3 million
–Guaranteed Rate Bowl, ESPN: $2.6 million
–Quick Lane Bowl, ESPN: $2 million

It continues to be a difficult year for ESPN, which has been hit hard since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. Subscribers are down 6 percent and the company laid off hundreds of employees earlier this year.

Earlier this month, ESPN and the Southeastern Conference announced a 10-year deal beginning in 2024 that will make the network the exclusive rights holder of the league’s football and men’s basketball games.

Though terms were not disclosed, ESPN’s annual fee is expected to be in the low $300-million range. The SEC currently received $55 million from CBS as part of a deal that was made in 1996 and runs through the 2023 season.

–Field Level Media

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