Liberty Athletics and ESPN have reached a new five-year extension for the exclusive media rights to Liberty’s home football games, beginning with the 2021 season through 2025. Liberty inked its first football media rights agreement with ESPN in 2018 during the Flames’ first season at the FBS level.
This new agreement ensures that all Liberty home football games will air on an ESPN platform while guaranteeing that one game each year will air on an ESPN linear network. ESPN also has the right to choose a non-traditional day (non-Saturday) for a second linear network telecast, with all remaining games distributed on an ESPN digital platform.
“We are pleased to continue to showcase Liberty home football games exclusively on ESPN platforms in the years ahead through this multi-year extension of our rights agreement which began in 2018,” says Dan Margulis, senior director of programming and acquisitions, ESPN. “The recent success of the Flames has made them one of the more intriguing programs in college football the past few seasons.”
During Liberty’s historic 2020 season, ESPN elevated three of the Flames’ six home telecasts to linear networks (Sept. 26 vs. FIU on ESPNU, Oct. 10 vs. ULM on ESPN2 and Nov. 14 vs. Western Carolina on ESPNU).
This new multi-year agreement is coterminous with Liberty’s bowl agreement with ESPN Events, which runs through the 2025 season.
Liberty’s 2021 season begins with home games against Campbell on Sept. 4 and Old Dominion (Sept. 18) – both of which will air on ESPN3, followed by matchups against Middle Tennessee (Oct. 9), UMass (Oct. 30), Louisiana (Nov. 20) and Army (Nov. 27) at Williams Stadium. Liberty is anticipating full capacity at Williams Stadium for the 2021 season.
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SOURCE: Sports Video Group