Pitt's Heather Lyke Says Fans Can Help Get ACC Net More Distribution
Pitt AD Heather Lyke has made a "call to arms" to fans ahead of the ACC Network's launch in August, implying that if fans' cable companies do not yet offer the channel, then "don’t just call them to ask for it, but demand it," according to Craig Meyer of the PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. Lyke spent yesterday making radio appearances and meeting with reporters, as there is a "degree of uncertainty still attached" to the ACC Net. In the Pittsburgh area, Xfinity and Dish Network "don’t have" the channel as a "part of their lineups." That is something Lyke and other administrators "hope can be changed with enough of a push from fans and customers." Lyke said, "ESPN, they’re doing a terrific job, but it will be very intense between now and Aug. 22 to see which cable companies pick it up." Lyke noted that the Big Ten Network "wasn’t picked up by Comcast until 18 months after it had launched" in '07. Meyer notes the Pac-12 Networks "encountered distribution issues, stemming partially from the fact it doesn’t have ESPN or Fox as a partner, something Lyke believes gives the ACC a measure of leverage in negotiations with cable providers." Lyke said, "Certain cable companies will drive that number significantly. It’s just a matter of who signs on and at what point" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 6/6).
HEAT CHECK: In Ft. Lauderdale, Christy Cabrera Chirinos notes the ACC Net is slated to carry two of the Univ. of Miami's first three games -- the conference opener at North Carolina on Sept. 7 and its home opener against Bethune-Cookman on Sept. 14. But at this point, "neither Comcast nor AT&T U-Verse -- two of South Florida’s major cable providers -- have agreed to carry the network." UM AD Blake James has "expressed hope that will change by the time the season begins" and has "urged Miami fans to reach out to their providers to express interest in adding the network" (South Florida SUN SENTINEL, 6/6).