WWE, Big 12 Partner for CFB Conference Title Game; Most Outstanding Player Gets Belt | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors
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The Big 12 might be losing Texas and Oklahoma, but it’s gaining Roman Reigns and Cody Rhodes.
The conference announced Thursday a new partnership with WWE for its 2023 championship football game on Dec. 2 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. As part of the deal, the game’s Most Outstanding Player will receive a customized WWE belt, and WWE stars “will be prominently featured and integrated” leading up to the event.
Big 12 Conference @Big12Conference
Big 12 Conference Partners With WWE® For 2023 Big 12 Football Championship<br><br>The Big 12 and WWE will introduce a custom-made title belt for this year’s Most Outstanding Player, a co-branded logo in-venue and on-field, and other Championship integrations featuring WWE Superstars. <a href=”https://t.co/TRsVdbOQL0″>pic.twitter.com/TRsVdbOQL0</a>
“WWE is a global brand that connects with a wide array of audiences,” Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yormark said. “With this partnership, we will integrate WWE and its brand power into one of the Conference’s biggest moments, further strengthening the bridge between sports and entertainment throughout the Big 12.”
This move aligns with Yormark’s ongoing vision for the Big 12. When he announced Nelly will be the halftime show performer for the title game, he said the conference “is committed to living at the intersection of sports and culture.”
Aligning with WWE achieves just that. Many sports fans have long thumbed their noses at professional wrestling, but there’s no disputing how popular it is and how much WWE in particular has moved into mainstream discourse.
On the other side of the deal, this is an extension of the company’s long-term strategy of utilizing college sports to find new in-ring talent. Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns are two of the more famous examples still active in wrestling. Lesnar wrestled at Minnesota and Reigns played football at Georgia Tech.
As of yet, it’s unclear whether the Big 12 champion will receive the opportunity to challenge Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship at WrestleMania.