Learfield IMG College keen to renegotiate terms with UCLA
Learfield IMG College, the dedicated US college sports agency, is seeking to renegotiate or terminate its multi-media rights contract with the University of California.
The agency’s existing $15 million per year deal with UCLA runs through the 2025-26 academic year but the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic has forced it to look for fresh terms.
This comes just days after Under Armour, the US sportswear brand, announced it was terminating its own deal with UCLA, claiming it had not received unspecified marketing benefits from the school which it paid for over “an extended period.”
The brand’s $280 million kit supply deal with the school, then the most lucrative in US collegiate sports history, still has another 12 years to run but it wants to withdraw from the contract in part to offset financial problems caused by the pandemic, which has forced Learfield IMG College to furlough staff and cut salaries while it is understood to be struggling to pay marketing fees to clients.
As well as UCLA, the agency is looking to restructure its similar agreement with the University of California, Berkeley.
Under Armour is also believed to be keen on ending its own deal with the Cal athletic department along with UCLA and has removed both the Bruins and Bears from its list of partner schools on its website.
UCLA and Cal’s combined deals with Under Armour and Learfield IMG College are worth around $500 million and will stand to lose tens of millions in revenue if they are terminated.
Despite looking to cut ties with UCLA and Cal, Under Armour this week extended its apparel deal with Texas Tech University until 2024.