On this week’s episode of Lever Time Premium, exclusively for our supporting subscribers, producer Frank Cappello and Lever reporter Amos Barshad are joined by sports writer Matt Brown, who explains how the private equity industry could soon get its claws into college sports.
The controversy is centered around Florida State University, whose football team is currently seeking to exit its collegiate athletic conference to seek increased broadcasting revenue from a more competitive conference. The move that could cost Florida State more than half a billion dollars in penalties. In order to raise that money, Florida State’s athletics department is reportedly considering taking on private equity investment.
Wall Street would welcome the development, considering that the media broadcasting rights associated with college sports (particularly college football) has ballooned into a multibillion-dollar industry. Though Wall Street is heavily invested in professional sports leagues, like the National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball, and the National Hockey League, what makes college sports different is the involvement of public institutions, such as colleges and universities, and the education of student athletes.
In today’s interview, Frank and Amos speak with Matt about how private equity’s involvement in college sports could negatively impact student athletes, fans, and the institutions themselves. Matt also breaks down the intricacies of media rights, sports conferences, and how student-athlete unions could offer a solution to this complicated issue.
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