Channel 4 Secures Super Bowl Rights, Signs Two-Year Agreement With NFL
Channel 4 is to become the new U.K. terrestrial TV home of the NFL and Super Bowl "as part of a two-year agreement" with the NFL, according to Mike Dawes of the London DAILY MAIL. In a deal that sees the station become the NFL’s exclusive free-to-air TV partner in the U.K., Channel 4 "will also feature" live coverage of the NFL’s annual games at Wembley Stadium -- beginning with the two games scheduled in '13 -- and a weekly highlights show. Channel 4 was the first U.K. station to feature regular NFL coverage when it began its "American Football" program after its launch in November '82. The station’s coverage "evolved into a mix of live games, highlights and magazines shows and continued until" January '98. The sport returned to Channel 4 in '10, with weekly live broadcasts of the league’s Sunday Night Football matchup (DAILY MAIL, 8/30). BROADCAST NOW's Jake Kanter reported Channel 4 "has also committed to continuing with Sunday Night Football live, which it has aired for the past three seasons, a weekly Saturday morning highlight show and an award-winning NFL documentary, Hard Knocks" (BROADCAST NOW, 9/2).