Reports: Tostitos, Discover priced out of College Football Playoff
JUN 11, 2014 5:13a ET
Apparently, not everyone is pleased that the College Football Playoff era is upon us.
Tostitos is cashing in its chips and going home . . . and taking Discover with it.
Tostitos, the tortilla chip giant, is ending its near-20-year sponsorship of the Fiesta Bowl, multiple outlets reported.
Darren Rovell of ESPN, which holds to the broadcast rights to the three at-large games, two semifinals and championship game of the CFP, later confirmed the news.
Frito-Lay confirms it has ended Tostitos' 18-year association w/the Fiesta Bowl to "steer its marketing & growth strategies differently."— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) June 9, 2014
Additionally, credit-card giant Discover is ending its four-year tenure as title sponsor of the Orange Bowl.
The reason, according to the reports, is the price ESPN is charging for sponsorship rights — $25 million per year with a six-year commitment. Some reports say that figure could go as high as $35 million. ESPN has yet to officially comment on the reports.
The six-game CFP will include the traditional bowl games, the semifinals rotating among six bowl games, each bowl getting a semifinal every three years. Those six bowls are the Cotton, Fiesta, Orange, Peach, Rose and Sugar.
According to Sports Business Daily, Capital One will become the new title sponsor of the Orange Bowl. The Fiesta Bowl is still looking for a title sponsor, while Northwestern Mutual will sponsor the Rose Bowl.
The withdrawal of Tostitos is a big deal according to reports, and it could prove to be a costly one.
When Tostitos sponsored the 2011 BCS Championship Game (played at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., same site as the Fiesta Bowl), the game was decided on a 19-yard field goal by Auburn kicker Wes Byrum as time expired. As Byrum lined up for the kick TV announcer Brent Musburger said "This is for all the Tostitos." That line was reportedly worth $2.5 million in equivalent advertising for Tostitos — and a whole lot of chips.