There are some big changes coming to the Big Ten football channel lineup for the 2023 season. Here is what you need to know to watch your favorite team.
Table of Contents
The biggest change to mention right off the bat is that for the first time in 40 years, ABC and ESPN are out as Big 10 TV partners, and will no longer air Big Ten Football games as part of their normal programming lineup.
While the end of the contractual relationship between the Big Ten and Disney (the parent of ABC and ESPN) has been reported as a complete break-up, some Big Ten football games against non-conference opponents will still air on ESPN. For example, a game between Minnesota and UNC could air on ESPN because the ACC has a TV contract with ESPN through 2036. Unfortunately, the reshuffling of the TV contracts also means that College Gameday won’t be making as many trips to Big Ten stadiums.
For 2023, you need these channels to watch Big Ten Football:
Big Ten Network
Big Ten Network will carry spring football games, and during the regular season, less sought after matchups between unranked Big Ten football teams, or “cupcake” games (we see you Michigan) that feature a lopsided matchup between a Big Ten team and an overmatched smaller school.
FOX will continue to carry the featured Big Ten game of the week with its Big Noon Saturday franchise, as well as the Big Ten Championship game in 2023. Under the new Big Ten football TV contract, FOX gets first pick each week as to the game it wants to carry. This means Michigan vs. Ohio State will continue to be a FOX noon kickoff.
CBS, with one year remaining on its long-standing TV deal with the SEC, will feature only 7 Big Ten Football games this season, before it gets its full slate of afternoon games starting in 2024 when USC and UCLA join the conference.
NBC & Peacock
NBC continues to air Notre Dame home games, including Ohio State vs. Notre Dame in 2023, but adds to the package a lineup of night time Big Ten games, called “Big Ten Saturday Night.” Adding a Big Ten football primetime game to pair with Sunday Night Football, one of the NFL’s marquee national games cements NBC as a hub for watching big football games all weekend.
What we love about it is the combination of having Notre Dame football, and then Big Ten football in prime time on Saturday night, and then ‘Sunday Night Football,’ to us, that’s a really powerful weekend lineup in the football season. To be able to bring the power of those assets together really made a ton of sense to us.”Pete Bevacqua, chairman, NBC sports group
In addition, Peacock will host 8 “streaming exclusive” games that can only be viewed on the app. These games will not be available on over-the-air TV or cable.
No, even though ESPN doesn’t have a TV contract with the Big Ten anymore as of 2023, ESPN will still broadcast some college football games that feature Big Ten teams. For example, ESPN has the TV rights to air the College Football Playoff. When Ohio State, or another Big Ten team, plays in a CFP playoff game, the game will still air on ESPN. Similarly, out-of-conference games between the Big Ten and SEC or ACC teams, both conferences with ESPN TV deals, could still air on ESPN.
Which live TV streaming services carry Big Ten Football channels?
If you’re a cord cutter looking for the best options to live-stream Big Ten Football in light of the contract changes, you can watch every Big Ten Football game in 2023 with either DIRECTV STREAM, fuboTV, Hulu + Live TV, or YouTube TV.