9/15: Notre Dame at Michigan St.
9/29: Wisconsin at Nebraska
9/29: Ohio St. at Michigan St.
10/7: Nebraska at Ohio St.
10/27: Michigan at Nebraska
10/27: Michigan St. at Wisconsin
Are there any games you would switch in for ABC or ESPN to pick up?
* C-USA has a game draft of sorts where FOX Sports can pick the top ten C-USA games that they want to broadcast. CBS Sports Network can then select ten, FOX selects another ten and then CBS Sports Network can take at least another five games. If I'm looking at the top ten most attractive games for C-USA here's what I have
9/1: Oklahoma at UTEP
9/15: Texas A&M at SMU
9/15: East Carolina at Southern Miss
9/29: Houston vs. Rice (at Reliant, pre-selected as part of deal to play at Reliant)
9/29: TCU at SMU
10/4: East Carolina at UCF (Thursday)
10/13: Southern Miss at UCF
10/20: Houston at SMU
11/3: Houston at East Carolina
11/10: Southern Miss at SMU
Tried to limit to no more that three non-conference games in FOX's 1st ten picks. It leaves games like UCLA-Rice, Rutgers-Tulane, Navy-East Carolina & Ole Miss-Tulane available for CBS Sports Network to take in their ten picks.
* The MWC also sets their television schedule before the season starts. In the past, NBC Sports Network takes eight games, but not always the top eight games (proof of that is BYU-Utah continually ending up on the mtn.). Lets say that NBC Sports Network, assuming the remain a partner, takes a ninth game. If I were them, here's what I would take:
8/30: Minnesota at UNLV
9/8: USF at Nevada
9/22: BYU at Boise St. (maybe just to tweak BYU)
10/7: Navy at Air Force
10/13: Fresno St. at Boise St.
11/3: San Diego St. at Boise St.
11/10: Air Force at San Diego St.
11/17: Hawai'i at Air Force
11/24: San Diego St. at Wyoming
Thoughts on any of the early selections?
* As the Pac-12 let us know when they announced the creation of the Pac-12 Networks, do not assume that FOX will get the choice of the best game every week. ESPN will have it a few times (thought I read at one point that they'll get top choice three times) and the Pac-12 Networks will have a few weeks two. FOX won't necessarily get clunkers when they don't have the top choice, but it might make the difference in having Oregon-USC or Stanford-Colorado.
* October 27 is the FOX will carry the World Series instead of college football in the evening. It has been assumed that ABC, who has rights to two Pac-12 games, would pick up the conference in primetime that week. Not so sure that will happen for two reasons
- The Pac-12 slate that week isn't that compelling, at least as of today
- Notre Dame-Oklahoma.
ABC would be foolish to not put the Irish-Sooners game on in primetime and send it to the entire nation. We expect Oklahoma to be a top five team next year and a matchup between two of the most storied programs in the history of college football is too tough to pass up.
And if FOX ends up with a portion of the over-the-air Big 12 rights, I would expect ABC to fight tooth and nail to make sure they don't lose out on televising that one.