College Football Association

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The College Football Association (CFA) was a body through which American college football schools negotiated TV contracts with networks. The CFA[1] was an alliance of 64 schools formed in 1977 [2] from the major conferences and selected independents.



On June 27, 1984, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in NCAA v. Board of Regents of University of Oklahoma that the NCAA's television plan violated the Sherman Antitrust Act. As a result, individual schools and athletic conferences were freed to negotiate contracts on their own behalf. Together with the growth of cable television, this ruling resulted in the explosion of broadcast options currently available. So beginning in 1984, the CFA sold a television package to ABC and CBS. The Big Ten and Pacific-10 conferences sold their own separate package to ABC.


By 1990, the television landscape changed. ABC had both the CFA and Big Ten-Pac-10 packages, and NBC had the Notre Dame home package.[3] The CFA was once again relegated to limited appearances. The beginning of the end for the CFA occurred in 1995, when the Southeastern Conference and Big East broke from the CFA, signing a national deal with CBS. Since CBS began covering the SEC exclusively in 2001, the SEC is the only major conference guaranteed a national "game of the week" on network television as FOX and ESPN have the rights to multiple conferences (although the SEC's primary broadcast partner is CBS).[4]

The CFA officially sealed the books on June 30, 1997.


  1. ^ Reed, William (August 26, 1991). "All Shook Up: Seismic Shifts Are Altering the Sport's Landscape". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Sandomir, Richard (1991-08-25). "COLLEGE FOOTBALL; Notre Dame Scored a $38 Million Touchdown on Its TV Deal". New York Times ( Retrieved 2008-04-06. 
  4. ^ Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961

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