The SEC Network will launch in August 2014, the Southeastern Conference and ESPN officially announced this week. The SEC also announced today that they have extended their media rights agreement with ESPN through 2034.
Over 1,000 live events will air in the network’s first year, including 550 on the network and 450 on digital platforms.
The network will air 24 hours per day, 7 days a week and will feature “approximately 45 SEC football games, more than 100 men’s basketball games, 60 women’s basketball games, 75 baseball games, and events from across the SEC’s 21 sports.”
“The SEC Network will provide an unparalleled fan experience of top quality SEC content presented across the television network and its accompanying digital platforms,” Mike Slive said. “We will increase exposure of SEC athletics programs at all 14 member institutions, as we showcase the incredible student-athletes in our league. The agreement for a network streamlines and completes an overall media rights package that will continue the SEC’s leadership for the foreseeable future.”
AT&T U-verse has already signed on as the first carrier of the SEC Network. The SEC is currently in negotiations with other networks, and you can request to have yours added at GetSECNetwork.com.
Here are a few more tidbits about the SEC Network in regards to football and scheduling:
- “We’re a Saturday league” Mike Slive said. The SEC’s two Thursday night games will remain and no more will be added.
- A nine-game SEC football schedule was not announced or part of the SEC Network deal. Slive said he expects to continue those discussions.
- CBS will still get the first pick of games involving SEC schools, but they will no longer own the “exclusive window” for Saturday mid-afternoon games.
- The SEC Network will televise football games in three time slots: early afternoon, mid-afternoon, and evening.
- SEC pay-per-view football games will now be “in the mix” to be broadcast on the SEC Network.
- The SEC Network will not air high school football games and has no current plans to air bowl games.