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Here's why, and how, the Landmark Conference signed D-III's first big streaming deal

The D-III league is signing a five-year deal with FloSports:

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Last year, FloSports signed long-term broadcasting agreements with multiple D-II conferences. Later today, they’ll announce their first partnership with a D-III conference, the Landmark Conference.

Specific contract terms were not released, but Mike Levy, the VP of Global Rights Acquisition for FloSports, told me that the Landmark Conference deal will be for “five years, and with a rights fee in the seven figures.” This deal is believed to be the largest broadcast contract for a D-III athletic conference.

But why the Landmark? And why now?

You’d be forgiven for thinking the Landmark might not be the ideal fit, on paper, for signing this sort of agreement.

Commissioner Katie Boldvich told me that historically, the league has been very picky about what kind of commercial relationships they enter.

“We actually pay a fee every year to keep our official website ad-free. We’ve turned down commercial and sponsorship opportunities before because we didn’t think it was the right fit. And in fact, my very email back to FloSports was, ‘My understanding is that you guys use a paywall…so…thanks, but no thanks.’”

But her thinking evolved. Here’s why:

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