Sunday, September 30, 2012

Week Seven (10/13) CFB 12 day TV Predictions

* ABC does not have a prime time window due to NASCAR.  To compensate, ESPN's primetime window moves to 8pm
* A Pac-12 late window on ESPN doesn't exist with the later start time for the primetime window.  ESPN2 has games at 6pm and 9:15pm.  FOX is expected to choose a pair of Pac-12 games and ABC is expected to air Big 12 games in both of their time slots.
* I do see the possibility of a six-day pick between the F/X 12pm window (if it stays at 12pm), the ABC   3:30pm window if a Big 12 game is chosen there and possibly the 12pm FSN window if the choices involve TCU-Baylor and West Virginia-Texas Tech.
* If Texas A&M-Louisiana Tech isn't chosen for ESPNU (it would be a shame if it isn't), Maryland-Virginia probably takes its place.
* I believe ESPN continues to hold onto its remaining priority pick for the SEC until later in the season.

Oklahoma vs. Texas, 12pm ABC (confirmed for ABC, time not confirmed)
TCU at Baylor, 12pm F/X
Northwestern at Minnesota, 12pm ESPN/ESPN2
Boston College at Florida St., 12pm ESPN/ESPN2
Texas A&M vs. Louisiana Tech, 12pm ESPNU (confirmed to air on ESPN platform)
Kansas St. at Iowa St.,12pm FSN
Wisconsin at Purdue, 12pm BTN
Iowa at Michigan St., 12pm BTN
Syracuse at Rutgers, 12pm Big East
Florida at Vanderbilt, 12pm SEC Net
Duke at Virginia Tech, 12:30pm ACC Net
Utah at UCLA, 3pm FOX (semi-confirmed)
North Carolina at Miami (FL), 3pm ACC RSNs
South Carolina at LSU, 3:30pm CBS
Illinois at Michigan, 3:30pm ABC/ESPN (confirmed)
West Virginia at Texas Tech, 3:30pm ABC/ESPN
Louisville at Pittsburgh, 3:30pm ESPNU
Oklahoma St. at Kansas, 3:30pm FSN
Tennessee at Mississippi St., 6pm ESPN2
USC at Washington, 7pm FOX (semi-confirmed)
Auburn at Ole Miss, 7pm ESPNU
UAB at Houston, 7pm FSN (confirmed for FSN, time semi-confirmed)
Kentucky at Arkansas, 7pm SEC/FOX RSNs
Alabama at Missouri, 8pm ESPN
Oregon St. at BYU, 9:15pm ESPN2
California at Washington St., 10pm Pac-12 Net

Maryland at Virginia, Time TBA
Temple at Connecticut, Time TBA (could be Big East local on SNY at 3:30pm)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Postscript on 10/6 CFB TV selections

Confirmations for 10/6

This one is light.  Couldn't think of enough to write about.  Sorry.

* FOX deviated with a pair of selections from listings on their RSN sites and from leaked schedules
  • UCLA at Cal - Leaked schedules had it as the early game of the FOX broadcast doubleheader.  Instead its the late game on Pac-12 Network.  Closer inspection notes that the other three games available in the Pac-12 all have ranked teams and this one no longer does thanks to UCLA's loss to Oregon St.
  • Boise St. at Southern Miss - FOX RSN schedules had a listing for "Conference USA on FOX / FX Replay" for 10/6 and also listed a pair of Big 12 games at 12pm & 3:30pm on FSN.  What changed? Boise St.'s play has been inconsistent & Southern Miss is 0-3 right now.  Now tack on Kansas St.'s upset of Oklahoma and the Sunflower State matchup with Kansas has a top ten team.
* I'm scratching my head on how Arkansas at Auburn is on ESPN or ESPN2 at 12pm.  Granted, SEC fans don't like the early starts when they can be avoided, plus they tend to have the connotation that the early game is the game no TV partner wants.  I suppose that ESPN has to fill their extra SEC games and this is one way to do it.  If it were me, I'd swap UConn at Rutgers or Mississippi St. at Kentucky with this one. At least you'd have a ranked team, with both Rutgers and Mississippi St. on bye next week.

* I think we'll see ABC and ESPN play around with the 3:30pm slot when they have the flexibility to do so.  NASCAR Nationwide Series is off on 10/6 so ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 were in play.  It sounds like their will be a reverse mirror of either Oklahoma at Texas Tech or Georgia Tech at Clemson.

* It would not surprise me if the ABC 8pm window ends up being a reverse mirror between Ohio St. at Nebraska & Florida St. at NC State.  Sounds like ABC is covering its bases in the event of any of the teams losing, particularly Florida St.

Monday, September 24, 2012

TV Confirmations for 10/6 CFB Games

Will just plug them in here as needed.  All times Eastern

What I thought would happen and will be proven incorrect

12pm F/X: Kansas at Kansas St.
12pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN: Northwestern at Penn St.
12pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN: Arkansas at Auburn
12pm ESPNU & WatchESPN: Connecticut at Rutgers
12pm FSN: Boise St. at Southern Miss
12pm BTN & BTN2Go: Michigan St. at Indiana
12pm SEC Net & ESPN3: Mississippi St. at Kentucky
12pm Big East Net & ESPN3: USF at Temple
12:30pm ACC Net & ESPN3: Virginia Tech at North Carolina
3pm FOX: Arizona at Stanford
3pm ACC RSNs & ESPN3: Virginia at Duke
3:30pm CBS & LSU at Florida
3:30pm ABC/ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN : Oklahoma at Texas Tech
3:30pm ABC/ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN: Illinois at Wisconsin
3:30pm ABC/ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN: Georgia Tech at Clemson
3:30pm ESPNU & WatchESPN: Maryland at Wake Forest
3:30pm FSN: Iowa St. at TCU
6pm Pac-12 Network & Washington St. at Oregon St.
7pm FOX: West Virginia at Texas
7pm ESPN & WatchESPN: Georgia at South Carolina
7pm ESPNU & WatchESPN: Texas A&M at Ole Miss
7pm SEC/FOX RSNs & ESPN3: Vanderbilt at Missouri
8pm ABC: Nebraska at Ohio St. or Florida St. at NC State
8pm ESPN2 & WatchESPN: Nebraska at Ohio St. or Florida St. at NC State
10pm Pac-12 Network & UCLA at California
10:30pm ESPN & WatchESPN: Washington at Oregon

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Week Six (10/6) CFB 12 day TV Predictions

* If ESPN elects to use its 2nd and final priority pick for the season with the SEC and jump CBS, they might do it and use a six-day hold, only to see if Tennessee upsets Georgia.  If it happens, I could see ESPN taking LSU-Florida away from CBS, flip-flopping with Georgia-South Carolina.
* Could also see the entire SEC go to six day pick after ESPN selecting Georgia-South Carolina & Mississippi St.-Kentucky, waiting to place the SEC Network, ESPNU 7pm and FOX RSN games.
* Big 12 might have a six day pick between Iowa St.-TCU and Oklahoma-Texas Tech.  One to ABC
* Several FOX RSN advance listings have an F/X replay of a C-USA game on 10/6 & also list two Big 12 windows at 12pm & 3:30pm.  Boise St.-Southern Miss was selected to air on FSN on 10/6, so slide it over to F/X.
* NASCAR Nationwide Series has the week off, so there are national windows available on ESPN/ESPN2 if one of those isn't reverse mirrored with ABC.
* Pac-12 is another place you could see six day picks, even if FOX doesn't elect to deviate from the script and take a game different from UCLA-Cal since it would appear that the other Saturday Pac-12 games would have ranked teams (Oregon, Stanford, Oregon St.) while UCLA could drop from the top 25.
* FOX starts doubleheaders on its broadcast this week

Boise St. at Southern Miss, 12pm F/X
Mississippi St. at Kentucky, 12pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Northwestern at Penn St., 12pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Georgia Tech at Clemson, 12pm ESPNU & WatchESPN
Michigan St. at Indiana, 12pm BTN & BTN2Go
Iowa St. at TCU, 12pm FSN
Texas A&M at Ole Miss, 12pm SEC Net & ESPN3
USF at Temple, 12pm Big East Net & ESPN3
Virginia Tech at North Carolina, 12:30pm ACCNet & ESPN3
UCLA at Cal, 3pm FOX
Virginia at Duke, 3pm ACC RSNs & ESPN3
LSU at Florida, 3:30pm CBS &
Illinois at Wisconsin, 3:30pm ABC with Reverse Mirror
Florida St. at NC State, 3:30pm ABC with Reverse Mirror
Oklahoma at Texas Tech, 3:30pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Connecticut at Rutgers, 3:30pm ESPNU & WatchESPN
Kansas at Kansas St., 3:30pm FSN
West Virginia at Texas, 7pm FOX
Georgia at South Carolina, 7pm ESPN & WatchESPN
Arkansas at Auburn, 7pm ESPNU & WatchESPN
Vanderbilt at Missouri, 7pm SEC/FOX RSNs & ESPN3
Washington St. at Oregon St., 7pm Pac-12 Network
Washington at Oregon, 7:45pm ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Nebraska at Ohio St., 8pm ABC
Arizona at Stanford, 10:30pm ESPN & WatchESPN

Wake Forest at Maryland, time TBA

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Postscript on 9/29 CFB TV selections

* Was surprised that TCU-SMU was slotted on FSN at the same time as a Rangers game airing on FOX Sports Southwest.  They do have an alternate channel available to air the football game and the SEC doesn't have a regional game to compete with.  The Rangers are hosting the Angels that day and while the Rangers have a lead in the AL West and the Angels are still in the wild card hunt, though behind by a few games, the game could have some meaning where FOX would pull it for a regional telecast.

* After this weekend's results in the ACC & the Big East, it made sense to run with a six day pick.  Several of the teams lost and left several of the games without a clear difference re: their pecking order in the television selection list.

* Don't know the exact reason why the Pac-12 selections came out on Sunday instead of Monday.  Can only speculate that if anyone involved in the selections observes Rosh Hashanah, they would not have been available on Monday to participate and did them on Sunday instead.

* I expect more Big 12 selections for ABC & ESPN over the next few weeks.  They'll probably have a game on 10/6.  Assuming the WVU-Texas game remains a FOX telecast, FSN is listing two Big 12 telecast windows.  The F/X window, per advance FOX RSN listings, show a C-USA telecast on F/X with Boise St.-Southern Miss likely moving over.

So Big 12 fans (particularly some WVU fans who don't like 12pm kickoffs), please take a deep breath.  Please.

* ESPN did not specify where any of their games would air when it came to ESPN/ESPN2 selections.  Consider the 12pm kickoffs independent of the rest of the games, but the as for the rest of them, consider them as the following groups:

  • ABC Reverse Mirror (3:30pm), South Carolina-Kentucky (7pm), Oregon-Washington St. (10:30pm)
  • ACC or Big East (6pm) & Ole Miss-Alabama (9:15pm)

* It does appear that if FOX is not doing a Pac-12 game in primetime, the Pac-12 Network will try to do a game starting at 6pm ET.  I believe that when ABC or FOX is televising a Pac-12 game, they have some exclusivity in their window.  I'm aware that it wasn't the case on 9/8 when Fresno St.-Oregon and Nebraska-UCLA aired concurrently, but when you have nine games to try to slot, sometimes you have to compromise

* 9/29 is the last week of F/X doubleheaders.  Starting 10/6, there's only a single game at 12pm on the networks most weeks.  Conversely, this is when FOX will also start with doubleheaders most weeks with 3pm and 7pm start times.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

9/29 TV Confirmations

Some confirmations came out on Sunday.  All times Eastern

What I thought would happen (and is already incorrect)
The entire week

Options for those on six day hold
Clemson-Boston College: 12pm ESPNU, 3:30pm ABC w/ESPN or ESPN2 Reverse Mirror, 3:30pm ESPNU or 6pm ESPN/ESPN2
NC State-Miami (FL): 12pm ESPNU, 3:30pm ABC w/ESPN or ESPN2 Reverse Mirror, 3:30pm ESPNU or 6pm ESPN/ESPN2
Florida St.-USF: 3:30pm ABC w/ESPN or ESPN2 Reverse Mirror or 6pm ESPN/ESPN2
Virginia Tech-Cincinnati: 3:30pm ABC w/ESPN or ESPN2 Reverse Mirror, 3:30pm ESPNU or 6pm ESPN/ESPN2
Louisiana Tech-Virginia: 12pm ACC RSNs or TBA ESPN3
Middle Tennessee-Georgia Tech: 12pm ACC RSNs or TBA ESPN3

Baylor-West Virginia, 12pm F/X
Minnesota-Iowa, 12pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Penn St.-Illinois, 12pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Missouri-UCF, 12pm FSN
Indiana-Northwestern, 12pm BTN & BTN2Go
Arkansas-Texas A&M, 12pm SEC Network & ESPN3
Duke-Wake Forest, 12:30pm ACC Network & ESPN3
Nevada at Texas St., 2pm Longhorn Network
Ohio St.-Michigan St., 3:30pm ABC
Tennessee-Georgia, 3:30pm CBS &
Marshall-Purdue, 3:30pm BTN & BTN2Go
Idaho-North Carolina, 3:30pm ACC RSNs & ESPN3
Arizona St.-Cal, 4pm F/X
UCLA-Colorado, 6pm Pac-12 Net &
South Carolina at Kentucky, 7pm ESPN/ESPN2
Towson at LSU, 7pm ESPNU & WatchESPN
Texas Tech-Iowa St., 7pm FCS
Texas-Oklahoma St., 7:30pm FOX
Ole Miss-Alabama, 9:15pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN
Oregon St.-Arizona, 10pm Pac-12 Net &
Oregon-Washington St., 10:30pm ESPN/ESPN2 & WatchESPN

Kickoff times, the Big 12 and ESPN

My latest set of 12 day predictions for the 9/29 games, and the previous weeks' kick times for West Virginia  has generated some questions on why the Mountaineers have played a pair on 12pm kickoffs on F/X and my guess that they would have another one on 9/29.

Matt Allevato, a writer for,  asked why Towson-LSU would be a night game on ESPNU where Baylor-WVU would get selected for a 12pm kickoff on F/X.

I'll briefly tackle the Towson-LSU item.  The SEC, more or less, owns the 7pm slot on ESPNU.  When the SEC has their primetime doubleheader on CBS (3:30pm & 8pm), ESPN cannot air games the evening window and you'll find the games often airing at 12pm or 12:30pm (yes, Alabama-LSU last year was an exception to the rule).  I can only think of one or two times when the SEC had the ability to air a game in the 7pm ESPNU window and did not since their contract with ESPN started in 2009.  It's extremely rare.  Since the SEC doesn't have any regional cable windows on 9/29, CBS, ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU and the SEC Network syndication package should air all five games.  ESPNU tends to fall at the end of the selection order.

Back to the Big 12.  As a brief refresher, ESPN has 19 games to spread across their networks and has chosen five of them (Virginia-TCU, Oklahoma-Texas, West Virginia-Iowa St., TCU-Texas and one of the Longhorn Network games). So they have 14 left.  FOX has roughly the rest of the games going forward to spend on their broadcast network, F/X, FSN or FOX College Sports.

On 9/29, there are three Big 12 games: Texas at Oklahoma St., Baylor at West Virginia and Texas Tech at Iowa St.  What has been leaked and is known is the following:

  • Multiple leaked schedules from FOX indicate that they've selected Texas at Oklahoma St. for their 7:30pm broadcast network game
  • Slots available on F/X include the 12pm and 4pm slots.  As with previous selections, the 4pm slot appears to be for the Pac-12 and the 12pm slot for the Big 12.
  • An advance listing for FOX College Sports has a Big 12 game at 7pm ET
  • FSN has three Conference USA games scheduled for the day
When I do my guesses, I tend to use what I find as a guideline and those items give me the impression that ESPN would not be selecting a Big 12 game for any of their networks.  ESPN isn't precluded from picking a game that day, but the available listings indicate that they won't.  F/X could move their telecast windows too so that they start later, but they haven't shown a desire to do that yet this year.  In either case, ESPN may have discussed their likely choices for each week with FOX and the conference, deciding that this is a week they would bypass, but elect to choose other games as the season moves on.

In case you were wondering whether moving one of the C-USA games to F/X would help WVU slot into a later time slot, unfortunately it wouldn't.  FSN committed the 12pm, 3:30pm and 7pm slots to C-USA and the Houston-Rice game is at 3:30pm.  ROOT Sports Pittsburgh, the RSN that covers a large portion of West Virginia, isn't picking up any of the C-USA games that day.  They've committed to airing a Penguins preseason game at 3pm (granted, the lockout could make that moot) and a Pirates game at 7pm.  So moving the game to FSN doesn't help WVU either.

On the ABC/ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU side of the house, besides three SEC games to slot for those networks, they also have two Big East games to place on their various nets with Florida St.-USF being guaranteed ABC/ESPN/ESPN2 and VT-Cincy likely to be picked as well.  A Big Ten game on ABC at 3:30pm in addition to Wisconsin-Nebraska at 8pm with the late game being a full national game it appears.  Add the ACC in the mix, plus the Pac-12 late in the evening and there's a lot to juggle.  With the Big 12 deal being set so late, it didn't allow for any games to be moved to Thursdays or Fridays except for TCU-Texas and WVU-ISU, but I'd expect some juggling in future seasons.

I do want to make it clear that when I'm doing the selections, they are based on what I know of in terms of available time slots, exclusivity rules (ie. in most cases, SEC games cannot air on CBS and ESPN at the same time) and appearance rules (ie. A single Big 12 team cannot appear on ABC more than six times a year).  I do not make the guesses in a punitive fashion (I know Mr. Allevato didn't take it that way); I just try to place the games where I think they'll go and I'll try to explain any selection that I can.

Week Five (9/29) CFB 12 day TV Predictions

A few notes
* Advance listings for FOX College Sports list a 7pm Big 12 game
* Several of the RSNs carrying the ACC cable package list two game slots: 12/12:30pm & 3:30/4pm
* There is no SEC FOX regional slot this week
* Based on MLB listings, TCU-SMU likely airs at 12pm ET because of a FSSW Rangers telecast at 8pm ET.  That could change if FOX chooses the Rangers for a regional MLB telecast
* A case could be made to swap the Virginia Tech-Cincy and Florida St.-USF games as long as the ABC 3:30pm slot is a two game split.  If for some reason three games were split regionally, VT-Cincy stays at 6pm.

Baylor at West Virginia 12pm F/X
Minnesota at Iowa, 12pm ESPN/ESPN2 (time confirmed)
Indiana at Northwestern, 12pm ESPN/ESPN2
NC State at Miami (FL), 12pm ESPNU
TCU at SMU, 12pm FSN
Marshall at Purdue, 12pm BTN
South Carolina at Kentucky, 12pm SEC Net
Idaho at North Carolina, 12pm ACC RSN
Clemson at Boston College, 12:30pm ACC Net (semi confirmed)
Oregon vs. Washington St., 3pm Pac-12 Net
Tennessee at Georgia, 3:30pm CBS
Ohio St. at Michigan St., 3:30pm ABC/ESPN
Florida St. at USF, 3:30pm ABC/ESPN
Louisiana Tech at Virginia, 3:30pm ESPNU
Penn St. at Illinois, 3:30pm BTN
Duke at Wake Forest, 3:30pm ACC Net
Arizona St. at California, 4pm F/X
Virginia Tech vs. Cincinnati, 6pm ESPN2
UCLA at Colorado, 6:30pm Pac-12 Net
Ole Miss at Alabama, 7pm ESPN
Towson at LSU, 7pm ESPNU
Missouri at UCF, 7pm FSN
Texas Tech at Iowa St., 7pm FOX College Sports
Nevada at Texas St., 7pm Longhorn Network
Texas at Oklahoma St., 7:30pm FOX (semi-confirmed)
Arkansas at Texas A&M, 9:15pm ESPN2
Oregon St. at Arizona, 10:30pm ESPN

ESPN3 exclusive
Middle Tennessee at Georgia Tech

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Postscript on 9/22 CFB Television Selections

List of selections

* Brett McMurphy noted that LSU-Auburn was selected by ESPN ahead of CBS choosing Missouri-South Carolina.  ESPN can choose ahead of CBS twice this year as a condition of CBS taking LSU-Alabama as a night game last year.

Side note: Per some research using the excellent lists compiled by Classic Sports Media over at The506, this is the 1st appearance by Missouri on CBS since 1982, when they visited Manhattan, KS on October 9th and tied KState at 7.

EDIT (9/15): The FIND function in some browsers sucks.  Same page has Missouri at Oklahoma later in '82 on CBS.  That is the last time Missouri played on CBS until 9/22.

* A few folks were surprised at the selection of Temple-Penn St. for an ABC selection, and I was mildly surprised.  But it was the only game available to ABC that involved a game between teams from AQ conferences.  Temple has lost 36 straight times to the Nittany Lions, but they've closed the gap over the past two meetings (22-13 in '10 at State College, 14-10 in '11 in Philly).  Yes, I know several of those games were vacated.  But the gap may be closing and tilting towards the Owls.

* I was surprised that Oregon St.-UCLA ended up as the other side of the split telecast with Temple-Penn St.  The Pac-12 contract announcement said there would be just two games on ABC, but much like the FOX side of the house, I suspect that the conference won't be upset if another game or two along the way gets split nationally.

* My guess is that Utah-Arizona St. also forced the hand of Pac-12 television partners.  Both Arizona schools prefer nighttime kickoffs in September due to the hot weather, so it eliminated that game from being selected by F/X at 4pm ET.  The ABC window also moved down the Pac-12 Network's telecast of California-USC to 6pm ET.  As I understand it, the broadcast network telecasts for the Pac-12 still have some level of exclusivity when it is possible.

* Miami (FL) at Georgia Tech falling to the ACC regional cable package stunned me.  Not knowing the ACC selection order, I believe this package falls towards the final selection of the week.  I don't know if it can jump ahead of any other package, but both East Carolina-North Carolina and Army-Wake Forest were selected ahead of it.  Miami's struggles might have been the tipping point.

* We did see some of the new rules of the Big 12 contracts in place, specifically the ability for FOX and ESPN to show games concurrently.  Maryland-West Virginia (F/X) and Virginia-TCU (ESPN or ESPN2) are the beneficiaries.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Couple followups re: Big 12 TV deals

Had a pair of items to follow up on.  The Big 12 provided the following responses.

1) ABC will continue to have a six appearance limit for their portion of the package, including any games on ESPN, until 2016.  At that point the appearance limits in all packages go away.  Makes sense when you consider that the Big 12 is no longer a conference that divides its television revenue by appearances on a particular network

2) Network exclusivity no longer exists. Any FOX network, cable or broadcast, can air at the same time as a game on ABC & the ESPN Networks

9/22 Television Confirmations

Follow here and here for television selection confirmation for games being played on 9/22.

Maryland at WVU, 12pm (F/X)
UTEP at Wisconsin, 12pm (ESPN/ESPN2)
Virginia at TCU, 12pm (ESPN/ESPN2)
Bowling Green at Virginia Tech, 12pm (ESPNU)
UAB at Ohio St., 12pm (BTN)
Central Michigan at Iowa, 12pm (BTN)
Kentucky at Florida, 12:21pm (SECNet)
Army at Wake Forest, 12:30pm (ACCNet)
Miami (FL) at Georgia Tech, 3pm (ACC RSNs)
Missouri at South Carolina, 3:30pm (CBS)
Temple at Penn St., 3:30pm (ABC/ESPN2)
Oregon St. at UCLA, 3:30pm (ABC/ESPN2)
East Carolina at North Carolina, 3:30pm (ESPNU)
Kansas at Northern Illinois, 3:30pm (ESPN3)
South Dakota at Northwestern, 3:30pm (BTN)
Idaho St. at Nebraska, 3:30pm (BTN)
Eastern Michigan at Michigan St., 3:30pm (BTN)
Colorado at Washington St., 4pm (F/X)
California at USC, 6pm (Pac-12 Networks)
Memphis at Duke, 6pm (ESPN3)
The Citadel at NC State, 6pm (ESPN3)
LSU at Auburn, 7pm (ESPN)
Rutgers at Arkansas, 7pm (ESPNU)
South Carolina St. at Texas A&M, 7pm (SEC/FOX RSNs)
Kansas St. at Oklahoma, 7:30pm (FOX)
Akron at Tennessee, 7:30pm (CSS)
Vanderbilt at Georgia, 7:45pm (ESPN2)
Clemson at Florida St., 8pm (ABC)
Utah at Arizona St., 10pm (Pac-12 Networks)
Arizona at Oregon, 10:30pm (ESPN)

Sunday, September 9, 2012

12 day picks guesses for 9/22 games

I'll post these on Sundays.  Kickoff times for these should be announced on Monday. Don't see any 12 day picks to be used yet.

Virginia at TCU, 12pm F/X
Eastern Michigan at Michigan St., 12pm ESPN
Miami at Georgia Tech, 12pm ESPN2
East Carolina at North Carolina, 12pm ESPNU
Idaho St. at Nebraska, 12pm BTN
Temple at Penn St., 12pm BTN
Vanderbilt at Georgia, 12pm SEC Network
Bowling Green at Virginia Tech, 12:30pm (semi-confirmed) ACC Network
Memphis at Duke, 3pm ACC RSNs
Cal at USC, 3pm Pac-12 Network
LSU at Auburn, 3:30pm CBS
UAB at Ohio St., 3:30pm ABC/ESPN2
Maryland at West Virginia, 3:30pm ABC/ESPN2
Army at Wake Forest, 3:30pm ESPNU
South Dakota at Northwestern, 3:30pm BTN
UTEP at Wisconsin, 3:30pm BTN
Central Michigan at Iowa, 3:30pm BTN
Oregon St. at UCLA, 4pm F/X
Missouri at South Carolina, 7pm ESPN
Rutgers at Arkansas, 7pm ESPNU
South Carolina St. at Texas A&M, SEC/FOX RSNs
Kansas St. at Oklahoma (90% confirmed), 7:30pm FOX
Akron at Tennessee, 7pm SEC/CSS
Kentucky at Florida, 7:45pm ESPN2
Clemson at Florida St., 8pm ABC
Arizona at Oregon, 10:30pm ESPN
Colorado at Washington St., 10:30pm ESPNU
Utah at Arizona St., 10:30pm Pac-12 Network

ESPN3 Exclusives
Kansas at NIU
The Citadel at NC State

Confirmed FBS games on national nets & syndication
Ole Miss at Tulane, 12pm FSN
Massachusetts at Miami (OH), 12pm MAC/ESPN+
VMI at Navy, 3:30pm CBS Sports Network
USF at Ball St., 4:30pm MAC/ESPN+
FAU at Alabama, 5pm PPV
South Alabama at Mississippi St., 7pm PPV
Michigan at Notre Dame, 7:30pm NBC
Fresno St. at Tulsa, 8pm CBS Sports Network
Louisiana Tech at Illinois, 8pm BTN
Syracuse at Minnesota, 8pm BTN
Nevada at Hawai'i, 10:30pm NBC Sports Network

Friday, September 7, 2012

Big 12 rights deal

This is probably redundant but here's a brief recap of the Big 12 rights deals with FOX and ESPN


The meat of the deal revolves around football.  ESPN retains rights to 19 games per year with the number jumping to 23 in 2016.  FOX retains approximately 38 games per year.  Some of the key items revolve around institutional telecasts & broadcast vs. cable games

* Of ESPN's 19 games, they can air on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU or Longhorn Network.  How does Longhorn Network fit?  Isn't it the institutional platform for Texas?  Yes it is.  As ESPN's Burke Magnus corrected me on Twitter, games on Longhorn Network count towards the 19 games for any game after the 1st Texas game (aka Texas's institutional game).
* No more than 4-5 games can appear on ESPNU.
* Anywhere from 13-15 of the 19 games must be full national in some form.  Either by a national game on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU or through a reverse mirror combination with ABC and ESPN/ESPN2.  In short, on the ESPN side, they no longer have to negotiate with FOX to place games on the cable networks nor to do reverse mirroring of games.
* FOX must place at least six of its games on its broadcast network and another six games on a national cable outlet.  I presume that "national cable outlet" today means F/X (could be a different channel in the future) since FSN is not cleared in many areas of the country on regional sports networks not majority owned by FOX.
* If a school elects not to televise its institutional game, the rights to that game revert back to FOX for broadcasting
* At least four Thursday games per year including Thanksgiving (looks like this will start in 2013 with the exception of Thanksgiving 2012) and one game on Sunday of Labor Day weekend
* ESPN and FOX combine to hold four six-day picks
* No more than four 8:15pm local time starts with various restrictions

One way to look at is is that FOX/ABC should be the top choice each week, FX/ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU make up the national cable tier, then FSN and FOX College Sports would represent the syndication package for the conference due to regional pre-emptions.

I have some questions out re: appearance maximums on FOX/ABC and what exclusivity exists between ABC and FOX in terms of whether, for example, ABC and FSN could air a game at the same time.  Previously ABC windows were exclusive with no FOX cable telecasts allowed.


ESPN retains its role as the exclusive rightsholder to the conference.  It does have an agreement with CBS to sublicense games to the broadcast network.

* Compared to the previous deal, ESPN will have 10-15 more national games
* The number of ESPNU games will double from 20 to 40
* Six games can be exclusively webcasted on ESPN3
* No change in the number of games offered via Big 12 Network syndication
* At least four games per school will be held by each school to be aired with at least 50 total games from all conference members to be aired regionally or locally via institutional networks
* ESPN can sublicense up to 20 games per season to another national cable outlet

More MBK schedule discussion

Since I last wrote on MBK schedule discussion, the Big East, Atlantic 10 and Pac-12 have released their television schedules, along with a new change to the Mountain West championship schedule.

* The Big East, playing with 15 schools this year, released their schedule on Wednesday.  Mondays still are the conference's spotlight slot on ESPN, and CBS stepped up with a commitment to six conference games, more than they've ever carried.  In the past, the conference has had some games carried exclusively on ESPN3, but with one less team than previous years meaning a slightly smaller number of conference games, all games may be regionally televised if they aren't televised on ESPN Networks or CBS.

* The Atlantic 10, playing with 16 members this year with the additions of Butler & VCU and one more year with Temple, saw a huge increase in the number of televised games, specifically with CBS Sports Network.  CBSSN will carry 34 A-10 games, exactly double the number of games they televised last year.  ESPN Networks will again carry 14 games over ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU.  CBS Sports Network will continue to manage a regional package and CBS, in addition to one regular season conference game, will again carry the conference championship.

* An addition to CBS's championship's schedule is the Mountain West championship, televised the last six on Versus/NBC Sports Network.  The game will fill the time slot where the Pac-10/12 championship aired.  The conference has also modified its championship schedule, pushing its quarterfinals back one day to Wednesday so that all four quarterfinal games will air on CBS Sports Network.  Presumably, CBS Sports Network's championship week schedule would look like this:

Wednesday: MW Quarterfinals & Patriot League Championship
Thursday: C-USA Quarterfinals
Friday: MW & C-USA Semifinals
Saturday: A-10 Semifinals

* If I remember right, the goal of the Pac-12 was to try to get more exposure for its sports, particularly football and men's basketball.  The football goal is being met with games on FOX, F/X and ESPN, particularly the FOX and F/X games during prime viewing hours for the east coast.  I'm not sure the happened in men's basketball and maybe that sport is the tradeoff for the better times in football.

I ran a quick count and of the games that will air on ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU and FSN, in 2012-13 the conference will have 50 of its 69 nationally televised games tip off at 9pm ET or later.  Compared to last year, that is nearly double the national telecasts tipping off at later east coast times (26).  Specifically 22 games will tip off at 11pm ET, compared to 10 last year (count includes conference tournament games).  Part of those changes involve a new consistent 11pm ET ESPN2 window on Wednesdays and it looks like more FSN's telecasts will tip off at 10pm ET or later on weekends.  But the conference's championship, in Las Vegas now instead of Los Angeles, will also tip off at 11pm, presumably after the Big East championship.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Administrative change with use of WatchESPN & ESPN3 links

Hi.  With the changes to WatchESPN and ESPN3 making them distinctly separate products, though loosely intertwined, I'm going to make some changes when it comes to listing them on the site.

Going forward, only one of the two link images will be listed.  WatchESPN will be listed for any game that requires the WatchESPN service to view the game.  Typically those games are ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU games.

ESPN3 will be used for games that are exclusively on ESPN3 plus games available on the ESPN GamePlan service.

The reason for the change is two-fold:

1) It will allow me a little extra real estate in the "Coverage Notes" area of each games
2) WatchESPN includes games on ESPN3

In essence, I'll be listing the minimum ESPN internet service required to view each game.  Consider WatchESPN the higher ranking of the two services.

Thank you.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Notes from opening Saturday

Recovering from some of the bumbling mistakes Syracuse made that cost them a victory vs. Northwestern.  That late hit call was far from the only one.

* FSN went back to being...FSN.  The following season after Comcast and the Big Ten Network came to an agreement, FSN de-emphasized its brand nationally in favor of the "College Football Saturday" moniker.     Remember, FOX (via NewsCorp) owns 51% of BTN.  De-emphasizing the FSN name to get a channel carried might have been a concession.

FOX began to tout its name a little more last year with the addition of the F/X games and went full out yesterday, identifying all games with "CFB on FOX" and "FOX College Football" and the use of the FOX logo prominently. Coincidence?  I think not.  Now that Comcast's RSNs are gone, FSN can go back to being FSN.

* Dish Network and BTN came together for a short term agreement so that Dish subscribers could see the opening games.  The length of the short term agreement (those were the Big Ten Network's words) is unknown.

* Comcast did black out its C-USA coverage out of market.  I wasn't home and wasn't counting on it, but who would have been enforcing that blackout?  Maybe FOX since they're the primary rightsholder.  The CSS games are supposed to be regional.  Then again, Comcast's coverage of Towson at Kent St. was blacked out too.

* The ESPN3/WatchESPN changes continue to be a cluster.  As some have noted, the west coast can see many of the games early in the day.  Well, there's some fine print on the blackouts.  They start at 6pm LOCAL time for you, the viewer at home during the week & noon on the weekends.  Also, I think there was something odd going on with the 3:30pm ABC/ESPN2 slot.  I think I was able to get the Southern Miss-Nebraska game via ESPN3 even though it was on ABC.  Miami-BC was correctly blacked out on ESPN2.

* Many areas missed the first FOX College Football pregame show due to the length of the Cardinals-Nationals game.  FOX is in a bit of a bind.  They should be starting their MLB programming earlier if they wish to show the pregame.  On the flipside, while I know FOX has dumped out of MLB except for local markets in the event of a lengthy rain delay, I don't know what they can do for a long running game.  Starting MLB a half hour earlier would help, but in September they also run into issues with some of their affiliates carrying syndicated college football from the SEC and ACC.  I counted about 20 affiliates carrying Buffalo-Georgia and 15 carrying Elon-UNC, so they can't move the MLB coverage too far up in the day.

Might be time for FOX to create a dedicated web stream, either for the game or the pregame, for situations when things run long.