Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud would gladly celebrate the billions fetched by the Big Ten conference in a landmark broadcast rights agreement.
Stroud is among student-athlete leaders who have discussed sharing in profits for the conference with commissioner Kevin Warren, though nothing is imminent in terms of disbursements to athletes as part of the deal with FOX, CBS and NBC that begins in July 2023.
The 20-year-old was a Heisman finalist in 2021 with 44 touchdowns and six interceptions. He also has more than $2.5 million in Name, Image and Likeness agreements with Value City Furniture, Designer Shoe Warehouse, Express and a car dealership.
Warren said in July at Big Ten Media Days that dialogue is taking place among students and conference administrators.
“I want to be a great listener to figure out what is important to them. It’s so easy to talk about money and share money, but what does that really mean?” Warren said. “I want to make sure that I listen and learn to be able to have big ears and a small mouth to truly understand what’s important to them.”
Stroud told USA Today the time to share is now.
The Big Ten announced their new rights agreement one week after ESPN announced it was out of the talks. In addition to three high-profile networks, more streaming options — such as NBC’s Peacock — will be employed to maximize carriage and all-important advertising opportunities.
“I definitely think it should be shared,” Stroud said. “But if not, at the end of the day, we have the NIL space. We can do it that way. The new college world is turning around, and I’m here for it.”
The Big Ten also plans to add at least two schools, UCLA and USC, in 2024 and shares profits equally among member institutions. Warren said in July he didn’t know if future profits would add a layer to include players or if members would be responsible for determining how and when to share the wealth.
–Field Level Media