ESPN and Southern Conference Reach Six-Year Agreement Bringing More Events to ESPN Networks and Digital Platforms

A new six-year agreement between ESPN and the Southern Conference will allow for more events on ESPN Networks and over 4,000 events on ESPN digital platforms 2025-26.

What’s Happening:

  • ESPN and ESPN+ have reached a new six-year agreement with the Southern Conference through the 2025-26 academic year that features even more conference games across ESPN networks, as well as an increased presence across ESPN Digital platforms.
  • As part of the new pact, there is an increase in SoCon men’s basketball regular-season home telecasts that will air on an ESPN network each year, as well as an expanded men’s basketball tournament broadcast schedule that will include both the semifinals and championship game over the six years.
  • All other live digital events produced by the SoCon – including football and men’s basketball – will stream on either ESPN+ or ESPN3. In all, an estimated 4,200 SoCon events will be available on ESPN Digital platforms throughout the six-year agreement.
  • The Southern Conference has had a relationship with ESPN for nearly 20 years.
  • Collegiate Sports Management Group assisted the SoCon in evaluating the broadcast landscape and potential partners as it worked toward the broadcast contract.

What They’re Saying:

  • SoCon Commissioner Jim Schaus: “We are excited to continue our long-standing relationship with ESPN. This agreement represents the most national television exposure with ESPN in conference history, which is critical as we continue to grow our successful brand into our second century of excellence. The Southern Conference is truly on the rise and this new agreement will further propel the league to even greater heights in the future. Special thanks goes to ESPN’s Dan Margulis and our media consultant CSMG in artfully guiding this process.”
  • Dan Margulis, ESPN senior director, programming and acquisition: “We are thrilled to extend our relationship with the Southern Conference through this new long-term agreement, especially on the verge of the league’s 100-year celebration in 2021. We look forward to showcasing even more SoCon events across our ESPN networks and digital platforms over the next six years.