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Brett Vito

DRC: UNT announces deal with Learfield (updated with info on impact on BTG, radio talent)

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New Multimedia Deal

 

DENTON – The North Texas Athletics Department will outsource its comprehensive multimedia rights for the first time in school history, selecting Learfield as its exclusive athletics rights partner for the next 10 years. The joint announcement was made Friday by UNT Vice President and director of athletics Wren Baker and Learfield President and CEO Greg Brown.

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NORTH TEXAS MEAN GREEN, LEARFIELD ESTABLISH LONG-TERM MULTIMEDIA RIGHTS PARTNERSHIP

 

DENTON, Texas (April 7, 2017) – The University of North Texas Mean Green will outsource its comprehensive multimedia rights for the first time in school history, selecting Learfield as its exclusive athletics rights partner for the next 10 years. The joint announcement was made today by UNT Vice President and Director of Athletics Wren Baker and Learfield President and CEO Greg Brown.

 UNT marks the ninth collegiate property to be represented by Learfield in the state of Texas, and joins SMU, UT Arlington and the Southland Conference as Learfield partners within the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Together, UNT athletic administrators and Learfield executives will staff a newly formed “Mean Green Sports Properties” team that will be solely dedicated to UNT and manage all aspects of the rights agreement that includes signage, digital, corporate sponsorships, television and radio play-by-play, and coaches’ shows. The agreement runs concurrent with the 2017-18 athletic season and will provide North Texas Athletics with a new, guaranteed revenue model over the course of the 10-year agreement.

“We are excited to partner with Learfield,” Baker said. “Greg Brown and his team are industry leaders. This partnership begins immediately and will generate in excess of $5 million in new revenue over a 10-year period. Our relationship with Learfield will also open up many other opportunities to incorporate new elements and technologies into our game-day experience.”

According to Brown, the addition of UNT was a natural fit for Learfield, whose corporate office in Plano is located just 30 miles from the university. “The University of North Texas has a growing fan base, with whom we will engage sponsors with innovative concepts that will provide growth and enhance the brand. We have known Wren for many years, when he was at Mizzou and Memphis, two of our university partners, and we look forward to having the opportunity to work with him again to maximize the potential of UNT Athletics over the next decade.”

Learfield has named Joe Domingos General Manager to direct its local Mean Green Sports Properties team. With nearly 25 years of sales, sports marketing and sponsorship experience, Joe most recently served in the same capacity for Learfield’s Warhawk Sports Properties team representing the University of Louisiana Monroe (ULM). He joined Learfield in July 2014 when the ULM rights relationship was established.

“The increase in revenue will be significant,” added Baker. “That sort of increase is to be expected when a school first adopts a model offered from a firm like Learfield, which is one of the reasons we chose to utilize that strategy for our corporate partnership program.”

With the addition of the Mean Green, Learfield now represents a total of five Conference USA members as it already holds individual rights agreements with Florida Atlantic, Louisiana Tech, Middle Tennessee State and University of Texas at San Antonio. 

Established in 1890, the University of North Texas is one of the nation’s largest public research universities, with more than 37,000 students. North Texas is ranked as a Tier One research university by the Carnegie Classification and has 17 programs ranked in the Top 100 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Mean Green athletics sponsors NCAA Div. I programs for more than 300 student-athletes competing in 16 varsity sports. North Texas has won 125 conference championships in more than 100 years of competition and currently competes as a member of Conference USA. 

An industry leader for more than four decades, Learfield has a deep presence in the college athletics landscape nationwide. It manages the multimedia and sponsorship rights for more than 120 collegiate institutions, conferences and arenas, and supports athletic departments at all competitive levels as title sponsor of the prestigious Learfield Directors’ Cup. Learfield also provides its collegiate partners access to professional concessions and ticket sales; branding, licensing and trademark consulting; digital and social platform expertise; campus-wide business and sponsorship development; and venue and technology systems through its affiliated companies.

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This partnership begins immediately and will generate in excess of $5 million in new revenue over a 10-year period. 

This will be helpful.  $500k/yr is less than half what the old CUSA TV deal was, but those days of decent money for G5 schools is over.

Hopefully this means more streaming games.

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8 minutes ago, Cerebus said:

This will be helpful.  $500k/yr is less than half what the old CUSA TV deal was, but those days of decent money for G5 schools is over.

Hopefully this means more streaming games.

Hopefully we get a better experience of streamed home games but we're at the mercy of our conference mates on quality of the production.

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I wonder if this means that the radio and TV talent become employees of Learfield instead of UNT?

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Do what you do best! Exciting leadership for UNT!!

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Posted (edited)

This looks like a big win where North Texas will get access to professionals who know how to conduct social media campaigns and promotions, create quality images/clips to be used in all sorts of media (streams, in game graphics, online/social, etc), product licensing, branding, and lots of other great things our athletic department has lacked the ability to do at a marginal level of quality.

Edited by UNTFan23
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50 minutes ago, UNTFan23 said:

This looks like a big win where North Texas will get access to professionals who know how to conduct social media campaigns and promotions, create quality images/clips to be used in all sorts of media (streams, in game graphics, online/social, etc), product licensing, branding, and lots of other great things our athletic department has lacked the ability to do at a marginal level of quality.

And hopefully an end to CBS Interactive that never cared if are digital campaigns were successful or not. 

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But, but Baker continues to do nothing.  Might as well call him RV Jr.

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This, this I like

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How does this impact Beyond the Green?

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And what becomes of our broadcast team of Dave Barnett and Hank Dickenson?

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This got me to thinking....

I wonder why NT doesn't have a public television station similar to public radio KNTU ?  NT seems to have a real pipeline to television jobs at least in the DFW area.  How hard would it be to put together a TV station similar to the Longhorn Network, except as a non-profit ?  Plenty of sports to broadcast as well as news and student oriented topics. 

Any RTVF people out there ?

GO MEAN GREEN

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there used to be one...nttv i believe.  i remember watching a game or 2 on the big screen at west hall in the late 90s...they even had some tv shows with students 

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This might impact the licensing program, too.   Collegiate Licensing out of Atlanta, which we are currently a member of, looks out for the big boys, but not much else.

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53 minutes ago, Hunter Green said:

And what becomes of our broadcast team of Dave Barnett and Hank Dickenson?

I imagine we would still select the broadcasters but don't know for sure. 

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2 hours ago, Marty said:

How does this impact Beyond the Green?

The article says no effect.

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1 hour ago, greenjoe said:

I wonder why NT doesn't have a public television station similar to public radio KNTU ?

Kind of like how the Houston Public "Media" TV & radio (KUHT) are owned by UH?  Or just for the university's own purposes?  Read this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KDTN

 

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Shot CUSA an email asking how games are picked to be broadcast and why all conference teams were not included.  Here is the reply I received:

"The television entities select the games for their respective networks.  Some are based on specific windows they have available and what games are available on what days.

We still have 25 games to be selected in the television process and will release those after they are complete."

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I hope this is a good thing. I guess the 500k/year is really nice. The one concern I have, is that outsourcing it to a company that may not care what is with UNT media in 15 years could lead to as little investment as possible to maximize the short term. However as the deal itself is 10 years, this may be a bit overly pessimistic.

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5 minutes ago, UNTLifer said:

Shot CUSA an email asking how games are picked to be broadcast and why all conference teams were not included.  Here is the reply I received:

"The television entities select the games for their respective networks.  Some are based on specific windows they have available and what games are available on what days.

We still have 25 games to be selected in the television process and will release those after they are complete."

I believe First Tier rights belong to ESPN and CBS, Second Tier rights I think belong to BEIN Sports and perhaps College Insiders, who would fill in for the now defunct American Sports Network (and possibly ESPN3?).

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Posted (edited)

As far as I was aware (pretty recently), NTtv was still a thing. If for whatever reason it did shut down, that must've been VERY recent.

http://www.northtexastelevision.com/

It was just never an "over the air" station. Cable-only.

Edited by dmaxel
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