Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Changes for 2013-14 Men's Basketball on Television

Let's get right to it. Season starts on Friday

* The ACC now is the occupant of the 7pm ET slot on ESPN's Big Monday.

* Look for the ACC First Round & American First Round (Wednesday) to air on ESPNU, ACC Second Round (Thursday) to be elevated to ESPN with the American Quarterfinals on ESPNU.  Friday is a little tricky.  The ACC evening quarterfinals or the American semis could air on ESPN or ESPN2.  The ACC afternoon quarters will be on ESPN2.

* Here's a look at Championship Week so far, along with its official start point.

* ESPNEWS will air 27 men's basketball games.  Nearly all of them will be from the American Athletic Conference with one coming from the Big 12.

* Speaking of the American, they did well with managing to get their entire conference schedule televised on channels available nationally.  ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNEWS, CBS and CBS Sports Network will carry every intraconference game.  The games on CBS Sports Network are part of a sublicensing deal that will run the entire length of the conference's deal with ESPN and includes football starting in 2014.

* FOX Sports 1 will become the home to the Big East, carrying the vast majority of the conference's games.  The network will also carry Pac-12 (22) and Conference USA (10) games that FOX has rights to.  The network will also carry a few neutral site games from the Barclays Center and become the home to the Big East tournament and portions of the Pac-12 tournament (even numbered years for the Pac-12).

* FSN, on a national level, will not carry any Pac-12 games.  They have replaced some of that content with around 18-20 Big East games.  In addition, they appear to have elevated about twenty Big 12 games, mostly non-conference games, to air across as many of their RSNs as possible.

* FOX Sports 2, previously known as Fuel TV, will carry close to twenty men's baskeball games.  Nearly all are Big East non-conference games, plus a pair of games (arguably the best games) from the Brooklyn Hoops Winter Festival.

* The Big East, much like the American, also had games sublicensed to CBS Sports Network.  The deal starts out relatively small and includes games on CBS broadcast network.  The number of games will increase starting with the 2014-15 season.  No idea if the deal's size increase to account for possible future expansion.  The sublicensing deal does not run the full length of FOX's deal with the Big East, so FOX could elect to keep these games in the future.

* With the sublicense deals with the Big East and American, CBS Sports Network has vaulted up the charts in my opinion to become a solid 2nd place among national cable networks for men's college basketball.  In addition to those two conferences, the network will air games from the Atlantic 10, Conference USA,  Mountain West, OVC, NEC and Patriot League, plus a handful of exempt events like the Great Alaska Shootout and the Paradise Jam.

* In conjunction with CBS Sports Network increasing its profile and carrying more Mountain West basketball games, NBCSN is dropping back a little.  They will continue to carry games from the CAA, Ivy League and Atlantic 10, but will no longer carry Mountain West sports, much like they did not carry any football games from the conference.

* Besides the new contracts for the American & Big East kicking in, the Atlantic 10 and Mountain West also have changes to their contracts that start up with this season.

* In addition to the Mountain West's expanded online presence, the West Coast Conference will also be more widely available via an increase in exposure through their partnership with Campus Insiders.

* The 2013-14 season is the final year of SEC basketball on CSS via sublicense from ESPN.  These games will revert back to the conference in 2014-15 to air on the SEC Network.

* Time Warner Sports Channel will handle the regional package for the Mid-American Conference after a three year deal with SportsTime Ohio.

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