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MSU to Host PSU in Prime-Time Black Friday Big Ten Football Game at Lions' Ford Field

Adam Wells

The Big Ten's prime-time Black Friday football game between Michigan State and Penn State will take place at Ford Field.

The Spartans announced the date and start time for the Nov. 24 matchup on Wednesday:

The Big Ten's media rights deal signed in August, which guarantees the conference more than $8 billion over the next seven years, included an agreement for an additional prime-time Black Friday game on NBC.

CBS will broadcast the afternoon matchup between Iowa and Nebraska on the post-Thanksgiving holiday.

Even though the media rights contracts were finalized in August, ESPN's Pete Thamel reported earlier this week there was "pushback from a number of schools" about playing late-November night games in the new deal. He added "tens of millions of dollars" in the NBC deal were in "flux" because teams in the conference historically haven't been required to play prime-time games after the first week of November "for myriad reasons— health, recovery and campus logistics among them."

According to Thamel, athletic departments and coaches throughout the Big Ten were "surprised" November night games were included in the package and they "weren't asked for permission to play them prior to the deal or informed of the change" before the deal.

The scheduling issues are still "being worked through," but Thamel noted Penn State, Michigan State and Ohio State agreed to some concessions to "make short-term sacrifices to help the league make up for some lost revenue from the NBC deal."

Ford Field is set to host two football games in the span of 31 hours on Thanksgiving weekend. The Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions will play on Thanksgiving Day at 12:30 p.m. ET.

Per Chris Solari of the Detroit Free Press, the Michigan High Schools Athletic Association agreed to bump its eight state championship events scheduled for Ford Field back by one day to accommodate the Penn State-Michigan State game.

This will mark the 37th all-time meeting between the two Big Ten programs. Penn State leads the series 18-7-1 and has won three of the last four games, including a 35-16 victory last season.


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