Big Ten Network Launches Aug. 30
The Big Ten Network today finally revealed when in "late August" it will lanch -- on Thursday, Aug. 30 -- two days before the Big Ten football season opens. (Duh!) The new sports network will provide regional coverage of games on Saturday, Sept. 1, including Youngstown State at Ohio State (a great game, right?) In prime-time, the Big Ten Network will have Bowling Green at Minnesota and Indiana State at Indiana.
The Big Ten says it has deals with 75 cable systems -- and a national deal with DirecTV -- but not Time Warner. Says Karen Baxter, local Time Warner public affairs director: "We are currently in negotiations with Big Ten Network and examining the value of its content. We know these games are very important to a segment of our customers. We believe that the best place for this network is on a sports tier, so that customers who chose to pay more for this highly priced niche sports programming have access to it. We do know that OSU fans will be able to watch matchups against Minnesota, Purdue, Wisconsin, Michigan State and Penn State on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2."
Insight folks also "are talking with the BTN, but have not made any decisions yet," says John Dobken, Insight spokesman.
Read the Big Ten release at http://www.bigtennetwork.com/news/index.asp?ArticleSource=26
"Highly priced niche sports programming?" Sounds like they're bracing us for a steep fee for the BTN... And the price would go up more if TWC adds the NFL Network? Which of those two would you rather have? And how much more would you be willing to pay?