"By virtue of the new sublicensing contract with ESPN, we’re permitted to distribute games outside of the ACC states now," said Ken Haines, CEO of Charlotte-based Raycom Sports. "We’re going into markets now that we never dreamed of and that’s all new exposure for the ACC. We’ve got much greater flexibility to sell and it certainly has taken the ACC to a wider audience."
Raycom began branding its broadcasts "The ACC Network" last season, and those telecasts are now in six of the top 10 TV markets, 13 of the top 25, and 25 of the top 50. The broadcasts were in 14 of the top 50 markets last year. Overall, the network coverage has nearly doubled from 28 million households to 53 million in the last year, or about 46 percent of the U.S. TV households.
Raycom, who would be dead in the water without the ACC (admitted by their CEO) has experienced quite the boom since the new deal with ESPN was signed.
Raycom (the ACC Network) reaches 53 million homes, clearly outpacing the Big Ten Network that is only in 40 million homes. The Big Ten Network earned ~$240 million in revenue in 2011, distributing ~$80 million in profit back to the members of the conference. Could Raycom be making more?
It's unfortunate that the ACC didn't decide to start its own network. Maybe Raycom needs to start sharing its profits.