SEC Network Lands Carriage Deal With Verizon FiOS, Bumps Sub Count To Mid-60s
Verizon FiOS has completed a deal to carry SEC Network, sources said. The channel will be on an expanded basic tier within SEC territory and include access to WatchESPN. It is not clear where Verizon will carry it outside of SEC territory. A formal announcement could come as soon as this week. The deal pushes SEC Network's subscriber count up to the mid-60-million-home range. Verizon has around 5 million subscribers nationally; within SEC territory, it operates systems in Texas and Florida. The Verizon deal leaves Cablevision as the only top 10 distributor without an SEC Network deal. Cablevision does not operate systems in SEC markets (John Ourand, Staff Writer).
CHIZIK JOINS THE NET: USA TODAY's Dan Wolken reports former Auburn coach Gene Chizik is "joining the SEC Network as an analyst," and he will make his first studio appearance with the Utah State-Tennessee game on Aug. 31. His "primary role will be as a studio analyst on Mondays and Tuesdays but will contribute to other SEC Network programming." Chizik also co-hosts a college football-themed show on SiriusXM Radio, and he said, "I've really enjoyed the media side of it. It's fun when you can do what you love to do, which is analyze college football, watch games, break them down both before and after and it's just fun for me and it's really been great for me" (USATODAY.com, 8/21).