Robinson Bradshaw Represents NCAA in Landmark Broadcast AgreementPDF
Robinson Bradshaw & Hinson, one of the state's leading corporate and commercial law firms, represented the NCAA in a landmark $10.8 billion agreement with CBS Sports and Turner Sports. The agreement secures television rights for every NCAA game in the annual men's basketball tournament through 2024.
Top management and teams of legal counsel from CBS Sports and Turner Sports assembled in the firm's Charlotte offices on April 15 and worked through the weekend to negotiate and document terms of the deal. The agreement goes into effect later this year and covers the newly expanded 68-team tournament beginning in 2011.
"It was an incredibly gratifying experience for our firm and resulted in a win-win relationship for the NCAA, CBS and Turner Sports," said S. Graham Robinson, a member of the firm's Sports and Entertainment practice group. Along with Robinson, Steve Newmark, Robert Fuller and Rich Dunn of Robinson Bradshaw and Scott Bearby, inside counsel for the NCAA, comprised the NCAA legal team. As Fuller explained, "Our work on this agreement drew upon the expertise of our attorneys gained from working for many years with highly complex sports marketing, licensing and broadcast agreements, and we were able to bring considerable value to the table as a result of our depth of knowledge and experience."
Robinson Bradshaw has extensive prior experience in television and sports marketing agreements. The firm represented the Southeastern Conference in 2008 when the Conference entered into a new 15-year broadcast agreement with ESPN and (separately) with CBS for all of its varsity sports.
Robinson Bradshaw's Sports and Entertainment practice group also includes a number of high-profile motorsports clients, providing representation for a variety of leading NASCAR teams and their drivers.