SBJ/December 25 - 31, 2006/This Weeks News

2 hours, 9 games for ESPNU show

ESPNU is sprinkling a little March Madness into college basketball’s regular season.

A new show, “Give ’N Go,” will debut Jan. 10 with two hours dedicated to live cut-ins on as many as nine games. It’s similar to the approach used during the NCAA tournament, when viewers are whisked from one buzzer-beater to another.

Mike Hall will man the desk for
ESPNU’s new show “Give ‘N Go.”

In addition to the live cut-ins, ESPNU talent in the studio will offer analysis on multiple games as they progress. The show’s name comes from the concept of giving the viewer one game and then going to another.

“Give ’N Go” will air from 9 to 11 p.m. ET on Jan. 10, Jan. 24 and Feb. 7. Those are the nights when ESPNU doesn’t already have a game scheduled for that time slot.

When the show comes on, host Mike Hall will immediately take viewers to the conclusion of 7 p.m. games. From there, they’ll move on to second-half action of early games and first-half action of later games. Most of the games will be from the marquee conferences, but ESPNU also will use this platform to show action from the Missouri Valley Conference and others, said Burke Magnus, ESPNU’s vice president and general manager.

“Give ’N Go” will highlight games that are broadcast within the ESPN family of networks, but it also owns live cut-in rights to other regionally televised games through their conference agreements.

n Additionally, ESPNU will allow writer Bill Simmons, also known as “The Sports Guy,” to serve as an analyst on two men’s basketball games next month. He’ll work the San Francisco-Pepperdine game Jan. 15 and the Saint Mary’s (Calif.)-San Diego game Jan. 22 and later write about the experiences.

n ESPNU’s college lacrosse broadcast schedule begins Feb. 24 with the Duke-Dartmouth match, which will be Duke’s first regular-season game since the team was reinstated. The Blue Devils’ 2006 season was canceled last March because of a police investigation into allegations by a hired stripper that she was raped at a Duke lacrosse party. Three players were indicted, but the case has not yet gone to trial.

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