SBD/August 27, 2012/Media

Pac-12 Network Has Yet To Reach Agreements With DirecTV Or Dish Network

Pac-12 Network will begin airing its 850 live events with this Thursday's football games
The Pac-12 Network begins football coverage on Thursday, but "the conference has yet to secure agreements with the nation's top satellite providers," according to Paola Boivin of the ARIZONA REPUBLIC. Both sides said that negotiations "are ongoing and remain hopeful a deal can be reached soon." Subscribers to DirecTV and Dish Network "remain out of luck for now." Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-verse "are still in discussion with the Pac-12 as well." Early reviews of the network, which went on the air Aug. 15, "have been mostly positive, thanks to slick studio sets and replays of popular conference games" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 8/26). In Seattle, Bud Withers asks, "Will DirecTV get on board with this, a deal that's been reported to be close?" Pac-12 Network President Gary Stevenson said, "I wouldn't characterize it as close or imminent." He added, "when fans want to have (good) content in today's television world, they get it." Withers writes it "makes sense" that as the football season gets nearer, "the heat will be more intense on DirecTV and the Pac-12 to come to some sort of agreement." Until now, "while there have been several live events on the Networks, there hasn't been football, and that will be the big driver" (SEATTLE TIMES, 8/27).

LET'S GET IT STARTED: In Portland, Kerry Eggers wrote content through the first week and a half of the Pac-12 Network "has been underwhelming, unless previews of the conference’s field hockey and water polo seasons are what you had in mind." However, "the good stuff is coming." Thursday kicks off "35 football games that are part of 850 live events to be telecast during the network's inaugural year." Stevenson said, “The quality of our games are terrific. The first weekend we have California opening its new stadium versus Nevada." Stevenson added, "In the first four weeks, we have every (Pac-12) team on the air." Eggers wrote the Pac-12 Network "doesn't settle for the crumbs of what is left after ESPN and Fox feast on other games, either" (PORTLAND TRIBUNE, 8/24).
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