College Football’s 2020 Season Sputters, With $2 Billion in TV Ad Revenue at Risk

In the wake of two major conferences deciding to forgo fall sports, the quickly-approaching college football season remains shrouded in doubt and uncertainty, even as three other top conferences are planning to play through a coronavirus pandemic that is still making its way through the country. But can you have a college football season if 40% of the schools aren’t involved? The TV industry has billions of dollars riding on that outcome. How much? Last season, college football generated $1.7 billion in advertising revenue, according to research firm Kantar Media, with AT&T alone accounting for some $70 million of that. The return of professional sports in recent months has helped the TV business salvage a small piece of the economic wreckage caused by the global pandemic. This fall was supposed to continue that momentum. Both the NBA and NHL will crown their champions this autumn — when each league would normally be ramping
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