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The Big Ten sent major shockwaves through the college football world with its conference realignment news this summer after adding USC and UCLA. Now, the conference is the focal point of more groundbreaking change.

Sports Business Journal’s John Ourand reports that ESPN has officially pulled out of media rights negotiations with the Big Ten, declining a 7-year $380 million-per-year deal that was the final offer by the conference.

This ends an over 30-year partnership between ESPN and the Big Ten that has been in place since the early 1980s. The relationship dates back even further if you include, ABC which is under the same Disney umbrella as ESPN.

Many expressed shock at the news and are eager to see where the Big Ten turns now that ESPN is out as a partner with the conference.

This could loom large when it comes to other conferences as well, as many are believing that ESPN could focus their attention on the Pac-12 following this news.

While nothing has been official quite yet for a new Big Ten partnership, there are reports that CBS and NBC are “nearing” media rights agreement deals with the conference in what would potentially net the Big Ten $350 million annually from both media outlets, according to Ourand.

He added that the deal could be finalized within the next couple of weeks, and it is becoming more and more clear that the landscape of college sports is clearly being turned on its head more and more for both the schools involved and the viewers at home.

[AA, Sports Business Journal]

About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.