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Pac-12 Football Media Day: Commissioner George Kliavkoff says conference is nearing media rights deal

pac-12-media-day-george-kliavkoff-comments-media-rights-arizona-wildcats-conference-realignment Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images

Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff addressed the conference’s looming media rights deal at the league’s football media day Friday in Las Vegas, declaring the Pac-12 will make an announcement in the near future.

“Our schools are committed to each other and to the Pac-12,” Kliavkoff said. “We’ll get our media rights deal done, we’ll announce the deal. I think the realignment that’s going on in college athletics will come to an end for this cycle.

“The truth is we’ve got bigger fish to fry. There are incredible opportunities and also challenges in front of college athletics, and I need to be able to work with all of my colleagues in Division I and particularly in the A5, and we’ll do that. We’ll move past all the bitter squabbling of the last year, and we’ll work together to make college athletics better.”

Kliavkoff said that the Pac-12 has already negotiated its grant-of-rights deal. The commissioner said that by waiting to get its media rights deal complete, the Pac-12 has opened itself to better options from potential media partners.

“The longer we wait, the better our options get, and I think the board (of directors) realizes that,” Kliavkoff said.

Kliavkoff also addressed the prospect of conference expansion. He made clear that the Pac-12 will wait to finalize its media rights deal before adding any schools to the league.

“Regarding potential expansion, while we have already done the due diligence on expansion candidates many months ago and significantly narrowed our focus to a handful of schools, our sequence remains unchanged,” Kliavkoff said. “First, we will conclude our media rights deals, then our schools will sign our Grant of Rights, which has already been negotiated, and only then will we decide on potential expansion.”