TNT sports gets two 2024 College Football Playoff games in ESPN deal

The College Football Playoff will have a non-ESPN television presence after all. In March of this year, reports emerged that ESPN would be the sole outlet for the playoff. If true, that would have cemented ESPN’s grip on the playoff and limited the way the playoff was covered. It was important for other outlets to be part of the playoff mix. It turns out that ESPN, in exchange for paying a massive amount of money to control distribution rights for the playoff, needed to sublicense some playoff games to claw back some revenue. That process occurred on Wednesday, when ESPN sublicensed multiple 2024 College Football Playoff first-round games to TNT Sports. TNT will air two first-round games this year, in 2025, and in future playoffs as well.

A number of questions emerge from this deal, beginning with how many games Fox, CBS, and NBC might get from ESPN in similar sublicensing arrangements. Another really big question is who will staff TNT’s studio show and broadcast booth for College Football Playoff coverage. A lot of fans think that with TNT’s “Inside the NBA” ending after next season (due to TNT losing the NBA after next season), Charles Barkley would be a natural for TNT studio commentary, even though no one would view him as a football expert. Sports are entertainment, and Barkley is one of the most entertaining talkers on television.

It will be fascinating to see how the College Football Playoff and TNT college football both evolve.

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Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire