When it was announced that Maryland and Rutgers would be joining the Big Ten Conference, many observers scratched their heads wondering what the two schools would bring to the table. Well, it appears that the two schools have given the Big Ten Network new markets in the tri-state New York area and along Baltimore-Washington, D.C. beltway.

Not only that, Rutgers has raised BTN’s profile in New York on cable providers such as Cablevision, Comcast and Time Warner Cable. In addition, the expanded conference footprint on the East Coast has led to increased subscriber fees raising more revenue for the network.

With the number one and number seven TV markets in tow, Big Ten Network is able to charge more in advertising rates. According to Advertising Age’s Anthony Crupi, Big Ten Network’s price for a 30 second spot is close to the levels charged by ESPN and its sister channel, the SEC Network.

The increased visibility for BTN has brought some big names in advertising:

Among the marketers that buy time on the net throughout the year are State Farm, Buffalo Wild Wings, Dr. Pepper, T-Mobile and Microsoft. Along with the aforementioned telecom company, Kellogg’s, BMW, Dollar Shave Club, Carl’s Jr. and the ubiquitous FanDuel are big BTN football boosters.

Big Ten Network president Mark Silverman tells Advertising Age that the ACC’s raiding of the Big East gave his conference an opening to get into the East Coast and become a destination for fans in both New York/New Jersey/Connecticut and Baltimore/Washington.

So perhaps the move to bring Maryland and Rutgers into the fold wasn’t so crazy after all and as the numbers bear this out, the Big Ten Network finds itself with an even bigger reason for Fox and the conference to enjoy the fruits of their partnership and look to a bright future for the channel.

[Advertising Age]

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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