As many notable college programs switch conferences, Notre Dame remains the largest domino to fall.
Rumors has spiraled over the independent school aligning with the Big Ten or SEC. However, the Fighting Irish could stay independent if they receive a suitable broadcast deal.
According to Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports, Notre Dame won’t join a conference if it can make at least $75 million in a new media rights deal with NBC. Their current contract expires in 2025.
Notre Dame is currently earning $22 million annually.
Per Dodd, NBC would need “shoulder programming” of Power Five conference games before or after Notre Dame broadcasts to feel comfortable substantially elevating the program’s valuation. The Big 12 is reportedly a “strong option” to fill that role.
NBC, which has held Notre Dame’s rights since 1991, is also a potential bidder for a Big Ten package. Dodd said the network’s negotiations are expected to last another two or three weeks.