Rick Greenspan On The Big Ten Network
Aug. 2, 2007
Indiana University and the Big Ten Conference are about to begin a new era in how Hoosier fans will enjoy the most comprehensive television coverage ever of our programs thanks to the Big Ten Network. The BTN will launch August 30 and features 24/7 coverage of events featuring conference teams and also provides visibility, previously unattainable, for the rest of the Indiana University campus.
The creation of the BTN insures that all football and men's basketball games played by Big Ten teams will be televised each year. In addition, BTN will increase exposure for all other sports, giving IU and others in the league the most broad-based television landscape in the history of college athletics.
In addition to offering programming which supports and highlights the entire educational mission of our University, the BTN will provide internships each year to students at IU, giving them the highest quality sports television work experience available. BTN also will not accept advertising which promotes alcoholic beverages.
The BTN will compliment the extensive national agreements already in place with ABC, ESPN and CBS and if launched today, the BTN would be available in 16 million homes. Unfortunately for all parties involved, negotiations to have the BTN placed on basic cable service within the eight-state Big Ten footprint have become public with many inaccuracies that have raised concern with fans across the league.
This venture is the first of its kind in college athletics and our peers are watching anxiously to see how this is resolved. I can say with great confidence that with a long-term agreement, the conference, its members and the network are in this for the long haul. We are very excited to have lured a broadcaster the stature of Dave Revsine from ESPN to anchor our studio programming and even more elated that announcers who call the BCS title game, Thom Brenneman and Charles Davis, will serve as our lead play-by-play team for football.
Our goal as a conference has always been to offer our product to the widest audience possible to the consumer. That is why we are unwavering in our belief that the BTN is of tremendous local relevance and should be placed alongside other over the air affiliates and sports networks on basic cable that are of the most interest to fans in this locale.
Some of the local systems planning to carry Big Ten Network as part of their expanded basic level of service include Altatec Alta Municipal Utility, Cedar Falls Utilities, Celect Communications, Consolidated Communications Network Services, City of Wadsworth Cable TV, Dixon Telephone Company, Grundy Center Municipal, Harlan Municipal Utilities, Hiawatha Broadband, Horizon Telecom, Independence Communications, Iowa Network Services, Mid-Century Communications, Moultrie Telecommunications, Muscatine Power & Water, Oneida Cablevision, Spencer Municipal Utilities, The Community Agency and USA Communications. In addition, Big Ten Network has national distribution agreements with DirecTV and the new AT&T U-verse service, as well as a major regional agreement with Buckeye Cable.
If your local cable system is not listed, please consider calling them and tell them you expect the Big Ten Network to join the lineup soon.
Check back soon