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FOX shells out big bucks for inaugural Pac-12 title tilt

Two months ago, FOX Sports acquired the rights to the inaugural Big Ten championship game, as well as the next five through 2016.

Today, it appears the network has landed another virgin championship fish.

According to a report in the Sports Business Daily, FOX and the Pac-10-turned-12 have reached agreement on a deal that will allow the network to televise the conference’s first title game in 2011. For the low, low price of $14.5 million.

The agreement, which is expected to be officially announced later today, is actually for a total of $25 million; the other $10-plus million comes from what the SBD describes as “other game inventory that is the result of the conference’s expansion from 10 teams to 12.”

As noted by the website, FOX’s deal with the Pac-12 means that ESPN will have just one conference title game -- the ACC -- on championship weekend. The Big 12 will no longer have a conference title game after dropping down to 10 schools, while the SEC’s game is broadcast by CBS.

FOX’s grab of the Pac-12 is the second major deal for the network or one of its divisions in the last two days. Wednesday, it was announced that an agreement had been reached on a multi-year agreement with Conference USA to televise a minimum of 20 games per season on Fox Sports Networks across the country.