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Big Ten to honor Johns Hopkins, ESPNU deal

In an interesting media rights move by Big Ten power brokers, the conference plans to abide by the existing media rights relationship Johns Hopkins has with ESPNU. The agreement, which was first brokered in 2005, calls for national, exclusive multimedia coverage of all Blue Jay regular-season men's lacrosse home games and select women's home games by ESPNU. In the past, ESPNU has also broadcast at least two Hopkins away games as well. Local affiliate WMAR-TV in Baltimore also broadcasts Hopkins games as well.

Per the venerable Patrick Stevens, Johns Hopkins Ronald J. Daniels stated that the Big Ten understands and is happy to support [the ESPNU deal]." There had been much speculation if the ESPNU deal could steer Hopkins towards another league, perhaps the new Big East (which recently announced the men's lacrosse only addition of Denver), if the Big Ten's own media properties posed a potential conflict of interest with the Jays. But the league clearly understood the unique nature of the preexisting deal in context of the value added by the school enough to acquiesce to what almost assuredly will be a one off arrangement.

Also according to Stevens, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany called the associate member's unique one sport standing in the league "new and different", stating he wasn't sure it'd be replicated again in the future. Delany also expressed interest in potentially adding Hopkins women's lacrosse saying "we'd be interested if they're interested."