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Alabama set to sign one of the richest multimedia rights deals in college sports

Alabama doesn't have its own television network, but it's about to make TV network money, Sports Business Journal reported Monday.

The Crimson Tide are set to re-sign an agreement with Learfield Sports to Alabama's multimedia rights for a 10-year deal worth between $15 or $16 million a year. For those keeping score at home, that's matches the cut Texas gets for the Longhorn Network.

Alabama's multimedia rights agreements covers basically everything except television rights. Learfield will sell radio rights, corporate sponsorships, print advertising and the like. The school's relationships with Learfield stretches beyond that of a typical multimedia rights deal, as Learfield also handles rights to beverages (Coca-Cola), sports drinks (Gatorade) and concessions within Bryant-Denny Stadium.

“We’ve been there a long time,” Learfield CEO Greg Brown said of the relationship with Alabama. “In the early days of the relationship, football wasn’t as good and there were some challenges. But even then, the business did very well and we’re very confident in the long-term strength of the brand. When you think about Alabama’s stability and continuity, it’s almost unlike any other in college sports.”

Alabama could earn beyond the $15-16 million a year mark if sales pass a certain threshold, SBJ reported. This, of course, comes in addition to the money Alabama earns through CBS and ESPN for football television rights through the SEC. The new contract will push the Tide beyond any school in terms of multimedia rights earnings except Notre Dame and Texas, both of whom have individual television rights contracts.

The Alabama athletics department earned $143.4 million for the 2012-13 fiscal year. 

Read the full story here.