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Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren’s time with the conference is reportedly coming to an end.
There’s been whispers about Warren leaving the B1G to become the President and CEO of the Chicago Bears, and it now sounds like it’s going to happen.
Ian Rapoport reported Thursday morning that Warren is “expected to” be named the new leader of the Bears at some point in the near future. Warren previously spent time in the NFL with the Vikings, Lions and Rams. He’s been the B1G commissioner since 2020.
Kevin Warren will leave behind a mixed legacy in the Big Ten.
If Rapoport’s report turns out to be accurate, Kevin Warren’s legacy as the commissioner of the Big Ten will be a very mixed bag.
In 2020, he made the indefensible decision along with other B1G leaders to cancel the 2020 football season because of COVID-19.
Nobody covered the atrocious movement to cancel football better than OutKick, and Warren was right at the top of the list of people responsible. Eventually, the decision was reversed and the B1G played a shortened season. However, nothing can erase the fact Kevin Warren originally made one of the worst decisions in recent sports memory.
On the other hand, Warren was outstanding when it came to securing a new media deal for the B1G. He also oversaw the additions of USC and UCLA in 2024.
The conference’s new media deal will pay more than $1 billion annually. That means all programs will get wealthier than they already are.
Adding in USC and UCLA also expands the conference’s footprint to an unprecedented level.
So, for as bad as Warren was on COVID, he was maybe the best commissioner in modern college sports history when it comes to media deals. The Big Ten is incredibly financially secure thanks to that deal.