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CBSSports.com takes over as host of OSU athletics website

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OhioStateBuckeyes.com, the Ohio State athletic department website, has found a new web host in CBSSports.com College Network.

CBSSports.com College Network took over for the site’s former host NeuLion, Inc.

Diana Sabau, associate athletics director of external relations for Ohio State Athletics, expressed excitement over the new partnership in a press release. 

“We anticipate that joining the CBSSports College Network will keep Ohio State on the cutting edge when it comes to online technology,” Sabau said in the press release. “With this partnership it is our mission to make OhioStateBuckeyes.com the new benchmark for all Official Collegiate Web sites moving forward.”

The contract between OSU and CBSSports.com has not yet been finalized, but under the terms of the deal, CBS has hosting rights to OhioStateBuckeyes.com through June 30, 2014, Dan Wallenberg, director of media relations for OSU athletics, said in an email to The Lantern. CBS also has the opportunity to add two single-year options following the 2014 fiscal year.

CBSSports.com is currently producing OhioStateBuckeyes.com under the current terms of the deal, pending the contract’s finalization, Alex Riethmiller, a spokesman for CBSSports.com, said in an email to The Lantern.

With the recent acquisition of OhioStateBuckeyes.com, along with the athletic websites for Army, Minnesota, Missouri State and Nevada, CBSSports.com College Network now produces the official athletics sites for 75 percent of schools in the big six conferences, Riethmiller said.

The big six conferences are the Big Ten, Big 12, PAC-12, SEC, ACC and Big East conferences.

Prior to these additions, CBSSports.com controlled the athletic websites for schools such as the University of Notre Dame, the University of Southern California and the University of North Carolina, among others.

While Wallenberg said CBS will pay OSU for the rights to host OhioStateBuckeyes.com, the amount which CBS will pay to produce the site has not yet been finalized.

Both Riethmiller and Wallenberg declined to give specifics on the financial aspect of the deal pending the finalization of the contract.

In an email statement from Riethmiller, Rob Schupler, the senior vice president of university sales and marketing for CBSSports.com College Network said that the addition of OSU allows CBSSports.com to continue to build their digital college brand.

“We continue to manage and build the most powerful digital network in collegiate athletics, and the addition of Ohio State underscores our focus on premium collegiate athletic brands,” the email said.

Schupler said in the statement that the primary objectives of CBSSports.com include helping partners expand their brands, delivering content to fans “wherever and whenever they want to consume it” and  to help the athletic departments at partner schools to generate revenue.

Despite the fact that CBS is a major media outlet, Wallenberg and Riethmiller both said they do not see the deal as a conflict of interest as CBS will not receive any exclusive access to information or individuals that is not granted to other media outlets.

NeuLion, Inc. did not respond to multiple phone calls and emails from The Lantern.

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