Tuesday, March 5, 2013

FOX Sports One, Thursdays and Friday CFB

FOX Sports 1 Announcement

* FOX Sports 1 was unveiled today and we know one of the 1st games to air on the network will be North Dakota St. at Kansas St. on Friday, August 30th at 8:30pm ET.  You might say to yourself "Hey, that's K-State's institutional game". You might be right.  Its also possible that the Massachusetts game is the 3rd tier game (I don't think its the UL-Lafayette game).  What FOX may be doing is trying to spread out those 3rd tier telecasts over a few weeks so that FOX Sports Midwest & FOX Sports Southwest are not jammed with multiple games in the same timeslot.  Both of those RSNs are also covering MLB games and that could factor into when those games could be televised and receive coverage in the entire RSN area, even if its using an alternate feed.

* FOX says they'll have regular Thursday night games on FS1.  We know there are six Pac-12 Thursday night games out there.  Four in the middle of the season, one on the opening week and one more on September 5th.  Let's set aside the Sacramento St.-Arizona St. game because I think that ends up on the Pac-12 Networks.  Oregon-Stanford at one point was listed as being on ESPN by the Ducks website.  That has been removed, but its possible that it was right, especially if you consider Notre Dame at Stanford was announced today to appear on FOX's broadcast network.  One Big 12 game, Texas at Iowa St., was designated to possibly move to October 3rd, the same date when UCLA-Utah is scheduled.  If Texas-Iowa St. moves, ESPN could certainly do a doubleheader.  Its also possible that one ends up on FS1 and one on ESPN.

There are also three Conference USA games scheduled for Thursday dates with CBS Sports Network eligible to pick up any of those.  The Big East football schedule is being released tomorrow.  We may know more at that time in terms of what ESPN is doing.  The MWC might have a Thursday game too on FS1, ESPN or CBS Sports Network now that the MWC can sell packages of games on their own.  BYU could have a Thursday game too.

* Re: BYU - Thursday might not be in the cards for them.  The home game vs. Middle Tennessee (September 27th) and the game at Utah St. (October 4th) are Friday games.  AD Tom Holmoe strongly hinted that the Boise St. game could end up on a Friday (October 25th ??).  Excluding Black Friday (November 29th), the ACC has one Friday night game on September 8th and the Pac-12 has two on November 1st and November 15th, respectively.  Connecticut let it slip that their game vs. Louisville is on Friday, November 8th.  FOX didn't say anything about Friday night games, and let's note that the BYU-Utah St. game is a MWC game and belongs to CBS.  There are around seven Friday nights that ESPN could be looking to fill.  There is also a Western Michigan-Michigan St. game sitting out there on Friday 8/30 that could end up on one of ESPN's networks if it isn't on BTN.

* So what becomes of college football on FSN?  I think it lives on in a reduced form.  Maybe one game a week natioally.  When I look over last season, there were probably 4-5 weeks where even if you took all the games from FSN and tacked on the game(s) on F/X, you'd end up with the need to put one game on FSN.  That doesn't include any of the FOX College Sports exclusive games either from C-USA or the Big 12.  Several RSNs also pick up the ACC and SEC RSN packages too.

* I'm calling the football playing conference that was supposed to be the Big East by the name "Conference X" and the non-football playing conference the Catholics.  It sounds like the Catholics will have their own version of Big Monday, pairing games with the 22 from the Pac-12 and at least 10 from Conference USA.  Remember that FOX in the spring of 2014 will have the Pac-12 men's basketball championship in addition to the Catholics conference championship, whenever that gets announced.

As for "Conference X" it sounds like they'll have some football games on FS1 and they could also help keep football games on FSN, depending on the dates they are picked up for.

* FOX Sports 2 apparently was not mentioned as part of the discussion today per the tweets and reports I've read.  It is probably forthcoming, but they need to get FS1 off the ground first.


Morgan Wick said...

If FS2 launches, would that obviate the need for national football on FSN or FCS-exclusive games?

Matt Sarzyniak said...

It could eliminate the need for national CFB on those nets. Depends how they want to program FS2.