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SBD/January 27, 2011/Media
Magnus Says High School Sports On UT Network Will Not Break NCAA Rules
Published January 27, 2011
school programming in 3-4 months
UNCHARTED TERRITORY: In Dallas, Chuck Carlton notes Byrne was the "first official to publicly question whether the new Texas TV network agreement with ESPN might run afoul of NCAA recruiting rules," and he "probably won't be the last." A school network "remains largely uncharted territory ... for Texas, for the Big 12, for ESPN and for the NCAA." BYU has its own cable channel, but programming "consists mainly of an academic or church nature." One "early challenge will be defining the Texas network." Schools "can't talk about prospective recruits until they sign national letters of intent," and "any publicity of oral commitments by colleges is strictly forbidden." However, cable networks including ESPNU, FSN and CBS College Sports "routinely mention recruiting news and information." Carlton writes of highly recruited Aledo High School RB Johnathan Gray, "What happens if the Longhorn network features Aledo and Gray in a game telecast? More than one telecast? In a half-hour feature? What happens if the people interviewing him aren't wearing ESPN logos, but Texas-centric network logos?" Carlton: "It's a good bet the NCAA by-laws will undergo significant fine-tuning by the time the network debuts, sending ripples throughout the membership" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 1/27).