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ESPN, TNT Sports to jointly present college football playoff games

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The Walt Disney Company’s ESPN has inked a sublicensing agreement with Warner Bros Discovery (WBD) to jointly host certain College Football Playoff (CFP) games, starting with the upcoming football season.

WBD’s TNT Sports will present two first-round CFP games during the 2024 and 2025 season as part of the agreement, the companies announced on Wednesday. Additionally, TNT Sports will also add two quarterfinal games each year from 2026 to 2028.

TNT will be the primary network offering CFP games, along with other TNT Sports distribution points, including Max and Venu Sports.

ESPN will retain the telecast rights to all other CFP games, including the annual CFP National Championship Game. It will also manage the sponsorship programs for the presentation of the CFP, the network affirmed.

“We’re delighted to reach this agreement with ESPN, providing TNT Sports the opportunity to showcase these College Football Playoff games on our platforms for years to come,” said Luis Silberwasser, Chairman and CEO, TNT Sports. “TNT Sports aims to delight fans and drive maximum reach and engagement for these marquee games.”

“ESPN is pleased to sublicense to TNT Sports a select number of early round games of the College Football Playoff, an event we’ve helped to grow – alongside the CFP – into one of the preeminent championships,” said Rosalyn Durant, ESPN executive vice president, programming & acquisitions. “We’re confident in the reach and promotion that this new agreement will provide as we enter the new, expanded playoff era.”

“It is exciting to add TNT Sports, another highly respected broadcaster, to the College Football Playoff family,” said Bill Hancock, Executive Director of the College Football Playoff. “Sports fans across the country are intimately familiar with their work across a wide variety of sports properties over the past two decades, and we look forward to seeing what new and innovative ideas they bring to the promotion and delivery of these games.”

This year marks the first time the CFP will expand from four teams to 12. The four highest-ranking conference champions will be seeded 1-4 and receive first-round byes. The CFP first round will consist of four games played at home campus venues, with teams seeded 5-8 hosting teams seeded 9-12.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 11 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
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