UH's Sampson salutes Big 12 commish for exploring naming rights deal

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Friday, June 14, 2024
UH's Sampson salutes Big 12 commish for exploring naming rights deal
The Big 12 is closing in on the sale of the conference's naming rights, ESPN reports. UH's Kelvin Sampson spoke in support.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Some monumental news in college athletics could produce an enormous payout.

According to ESPN, ABC13's sister network, the Big 12 Conference is exploring selling the league's naming rights to a title sponsor. The branding, poised to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars, would potentially take the name "Big" out of Big 12 and replace it with the sponsor's name.

So, the University of Houston, Baylor, Texas Tech, and TCU could potentially play in "The Disney 12" after the deal is signed.

Houston Cougars head men's basketball coach Kelvin Sampson salutes Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yormark for thinking outside the box regarding revenue.

"Just like the schools are going to be held accountable for finding new dollars out there, so is Brett Yormark," Sampson said Thursday via Zoom. "He's the commissioner of the Big 12, and he is going to have his plate full. It's not easy in this day and age. That's one of the reasons I feel good about the Big 12. We have a guy in Brett Yormark who thinks outside of the box. He's coming up with new ideas to keep us competitive. We can't let the SEC and the Big 10 get too far away from us. We have to find a way to stay competitive."

According to ESPN's report, the Big 12 has been exploring the naming rights option for the past six months and is expected to make a decision in the upcoming months.

Additionally, as CBS Sports first reported, the Big 12 has been in discussions with private equity firm CVC Capital Partners for a stake in the league between 15% and 20%, sources confirmed to ESPN. That could give the Big 12 up to a $1 billion cash infusion and would be the first known large-scale private equity investment in college sports.

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