Welcome to the Gridiron Tech blog here at Succeed In Football, where we keep tabs on how the latest technology is impacting the football world. 

Pack pays back with tech: In a partnership with Microsoft, the Green Bay Packers have invested $5 million dollars towards building a new “Titletown Tech” facility near Lambeau Field. The project is geared towards boosting the growth of startup tech companies in the community and helping revitalize the local economy. Green Bay CEO Mark Murphy acknowledged that the new facility would have a great economic impact in the region. “Titletown has gained a tremendously impactful partner in Microsoft,” Murphy said in a released statement. “Economic development is the key to our region’s future, and Microsoft, with its array of tools and expertise, will help grow new businesses as well as assist our existing companies to use technology to realize greater success.” The decision to move closer towards the technology era for the Packers, who are the only publicly owned NFL franchise, has been welcomed by the fans of Green Bay. With the emergence of eSports and technology in the NFL, it wouldn’t be surprising if more teams followed suit in years to come.

IOC considers eSports: Speaking of eSports, the rapid movement involving the sport of video games is gaining major momentum, not just in the football community but in the global sports world. Representatives recently met to discuss the role of eSports in future Olympic events and how implementing the “sport” could help generate increased interest amongst millennials. We have seen NFL owners such as Robert Kraft (Patriots), Stan Kroenke (Rams) and Jerry Jones (Cowboys) invest up to $20 million each for an eSports franchise. This past April, the University of Utah became the first Power Five school to offer a varsity eSports program. For those of you who thought playing Madden Football on the latest console was all fun and games, it may be time to change how we perceive eSports.

Big Ten embraces live streaming: The emergence of online streaming content deals has been well documented in this column, as we have examined the impact of the AmazonPrime TNF package. We have also seen the Mountain West Conference and Conference USA strike deals on the collegiate level. Add the Big Ten to the growing list of NCAA conferences looking to capitalize on livestream licensing rights. The announced partnership with FloSports is a four-year deal that will grant FloSports the exclusive right to livestream over 1,000 events (that otherwise wouldn’t be televised) on their subscription-based online service. While many of the B1G football games are televised, the conference intends to make other sporting events more accessible on FloSports, with channels such as FloWrestling, FloTrack, FloVolleyball and FloHoops. While livestream deals initially took some time to catch on, you can be sure that every sport, conference and event will have some sort of online content licensing agreement in place by this time next year. Failure to do so would mean ignoring an entire new revenue stream that is currently exploding.

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