Fox Sports Cuts BCS Rights Deal

NEW YORK Fox Sports has won the rights to televise three of the four NCAA College Bowl Championship Series games—the Sugar Bowl, Orange Bowl and Fiesta Bowl—for four years beginning in 2007.

Those games currently air on ABC, which earlier won its TV rights renewal to televise the Rose Bowl through 2014. The BCS comprises the six biggest college football conferences, as well as Notre Dame.

ABC, which reportedly locked up the rights to televise the Rose Bowl by paying an average of $30 million per year, or $240 million over the eight years of the new contract, reportedly bid $52.5 million per year in an attempt to renew its rights for the Sugar, Orange and Fiesta Bowls, significantly less than the $73.5 million it is paying under the current contract. Fox then bid $60 million per year to win the rights.

Under the new TV rights contract, unveiled today, Fox will televise the three bowl games, including the BCS Championship game, from 2007 through 2009. In 2010, Fox will air two bowl games, with the championship game of the Rose Bowl airing on ABC.