A little cleaner look at KU's announced TV deal with Time Warner


The news regarding a broadcasting deal between Kansas Athletics, IMG College and Time Warner Cable/MetroSports to create a revamped Jayhawk Network has produced quite a bit of confusion from fans throughout Jayhawk Nation.

As I've mentioned several times today, both on Twitter and in the comments section of our story, I understand those concerns and the confusion but also am limited in what I can say because KU and its partners have chosen to release the details of their TV agreement in two parts, one today and one sometime in the very near future, once details are finalized and contracts are signed.

In the meantime, let's try to clear up some of the confusion with a very basic and very brief comparison between what you, as viewers, had before and what you'll be getting under the new deal, as it stands today.

I say “as it stands today,” because I've had multiple off-the-record conversations with people at KU about this and I have a pretty clear understanding that when the final pieces of the puzzle are put in place, KU fans will be very excited about the future and how it pertains to KU expanding its brand and presence in homes across the country.

For now, though, let's get on with this exercise.

• Additional KU coverage, what's come to be known as “shoulder programming”
Now – None
With the new deal – 600 hours per year, available to all Time Warner customers, nationwide

• Games or events shown in Kansas on the Jayhawk Televsion Network:
Now – 1 football game and six men's basketball games per year
With the new deal – Those seven events plus 43 other events in sports including volleyball, women's basketball, soccer and track

• Men's hoops games shown in Kansas via other media outlets and/or cable providers
Now – All
With the new deal – All

--- It's important to remember that this deal is for KU's Tier 3 rights only and that many men's hoops games and football games are broadcast with KU and/or the Big 12's Tier 1 and Tier 2 partners. So, in short, games shown on ESPN, ESPN2, CBS, Fox, whatever, will still be shown on those channels just as they have been in the past. Nothing changes there. ---

--- Another thing worth remembering is this: The whole hub-bub here is over six men's basketball games slated for Jayhawk Network. In 2012-13, 27 of KU's 34 non-NCAA Tournament games were shown on national television, 19 on ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU, 4 on CBS and 4 on the Big 12 Network. In 2011-12 28 of 33 games were on national TV and in 2010-11 25 of 33 were on national TV. So the point here is that nothing changes for the national audience. ---

One one the biggest questions I have heard today is regarding DirectTV and Dish Network subscribers. And there is some cause for concern there.

If those providers do not carry Time Warner and/or MetroSports programming then DirectTV and Dish Network subscribers will not be able to get the 50 extra events or 300 hours of additional programming.

Having said that, there is some precedent for complaints from customers changing that in a hurry. When the Los Angeles Lakers entered into a deal with Time Warner, similar to the one KU and TWC have reached today, many Lakers fans who were on DirectTV and Dish Network went to those providers and complained about not being able to get the Lakers coverage because the channel was not available in their current lineup.

Here's a link to an L.A. Times story about the end of the madness back in 2012:

Evidently, enough people complained to inspire DirectTV to approach Time Warner about rectifying the situation and, when they did, things were fixed quickly.

A non-KU affiliated source I talked to a little bit ago explained it to me like this: According to FCC regulations, if DirectTV or Dish Network approach Time Warner and say they've heard viewer complaints about not carrying the channel and tell Time Warner they would like to pick up what, in this case, would be MetroSports, Time Warner is required to provide the channel to DirectTV or Dish Network at a nominal fee. At that point, DirectTV and/or Dish Network would decide how they want to incorporate it into their lineup. They could make it a part of a sports tier or package, they could add it to the overall lineup and bump up subscription costs by a small amount or they could even include it on a pay-per-view basis. That part is up to them. But if they hear enough complaints and, more importantly, if they sense that enough customers may be considering switching over to Time Warner, they almost assuredly would request to add the channel to their lineup.

Again, there's a lot still to come out here and patience is at a premium right now. It's my belief that when all of the dust settles KU fans will feel very good about the total deal and be as excited as the folks inside KU currently are about what this means for the future of broadcast KU athletics both in Kansas and across the country.

As we so often said during the conference realignment mess, stay tuned...


Jeremy D. Morris 8 years, 5 months ago

Thanks for the clarification, Matt. I am hopeful that this will be a great thing. I really like the idea of the shoulder programming as I can never get enough Hawk info. As someone who lives in Central Kansas I'm curious to see how it will play out for us.

thmdmph 8 years, 5 months ago

Clarification helps. Just one more issue. Is there a tier 4 to pickup KU's men's BB pickup games and 1 practice?

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Who leaked that to you?!?!? Top secret stuff, man! (kidding, folks)

Lefty54 8 years, 5 months ago

Thank you for the additional information.

Chuck Woodling 8 years, 5 months ago

Will it ever come out how much Tier 3 money KU Athletics will receive, and where KU's Tier 3 payments rank among the other nine league schools?

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

I'm sure that will/can happen, but I can't tell you when. I'll look into it and bring you that info if/when it becomes available.

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Haha! Didn't even realize it was you when I answered it. Became very clear when I saw those initials. Too funny.

Larry Smith 8 years, 5 months ago

This was the last year of the original Big12, so its a few years old.

Kansas - $7,276,988.00

Oklahoma St. - $6,395,000.00

Nebraska - $4,393,529.00

Missouri - $4,081,549.00

Kansas St. - $3,263,941.00

Iowa St - $2,608,896.00

Texas - $338,171.00

Oklahoma - $317,361.00

Colorado - $155,528.00

Texas A&M - $0

Texas Tech - $0

Baylor [no info]

Hence the reason KU was such a big proponent of schools keeping their own third tier rights.

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Most sensible thing that's been said all day.

Displayhawk 8 years, 5 months ago

I'm glad they announced it now. I had Dish Network and absolutely hated it! So I was considering whether to switch to Time Warner Cable or AT&T. My minds made up now! TWC it is!

Mike Barnhart 8 years, 5 months ago

Good for KU! I can't imagine this being worth more than a couple million a year to the AD. That said, third tier rights should be pretty popular with the parents of Kansas non-revenue sports.

John Fryback 8 years, 5 months ago

Good point, and also every day of the year Jayhawks!

John Randall 8 years, 5 months ago

That's an impressive part of the arrangement – more than a men'sBB deal, it brings all of KU Athletics into a bit of the limelight.

JerryK 8 years, 5 months ago

Will WOW add an HD channel for Metro Sports, currently only on channel 37?

Kman_blue 8 years, 5 months ago

Go to this link and request Metro Sports in HD on WOW!

If enough people request it, they'd almost have to add it to their lineup.

Bailey52362 8 years, 5 months ago

Question about this comment: "A non-KU affiliated source I talked to a little bit ago explained it to me like this: According to FCC regulations, if DirectTV or Dish Network approach Time Warner and say they've heard viewer complaints about not carrying the channel and tell Time Warner they would like to pick up what, in this case, would be MetroSports, Time Warner is required to provide the channel to DirectTV or Dish Network at a nominal fee."

Does the same FCC regulation apply to other cable providers, such as ATT U-Verse?

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Not sure. I would assume so but the person I spoke with did not mention AT&T specifically... I'll keep my ears open.

Bailey52362 8 years, 5 months ago

Thanks, Matt. I should have been more concise. Are you aware if this regulation applies only to satellite providers, or if it also applies to competing cable providers?

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

I'm not. And that's a good point you bring up. I would guess that might be a little more difficult to do with a competing cable entity. But, again, I don't know anything about that for sure and will look into it.

Suzanne Kelly 8 years, 5 months ago

I appreciate the information, but it looks like those without TW will have to jump through hoops to get Metro added to their provider and could even end up without.

It's not just DirecTV and Dish - ATT U-Verse has a presence nationally and in Lawrence.

I hope KU will do what is necessary to have ALL providers have access to Metro and not put it on the subscribers to clamor for it.

Without all providers carrying Metro, there is no "national presence."

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

As it stands now.... Remember, there's more to be released and the full details of this deal are not yet public.

kujaydoc 8 years, 5 months ago

What about non-TWC cable customers in KC, ie SureWest?

Josh Galler 8 years, 5 months ago

exactly reason why I am not a TWC customer and a Surewest is mostly customer service TWC sucks at that

JayHawkFanToo 8 years, 5 months ago

I have Surewest and I mostly like it; however it will not even carry ESPN 3, instead they have 3 Big 10 channels that, as far as I can tell, carry the exact same programming all the time; go figure. They do not carry Metro Sports (which is affiliated with TW) and the chances are that they will not. TW is not in Olathe so the option is Comcast that is even worse than TW. TW has been playing hardball with Google (with deep pockets) and chances are that small Surewest will not be able to afford TW rates. This sucks.

The_poster_kusports_needs 8 years, 5 months ago

You aren't really trying to say that KU sports fans have the same kind of pull that Lakers fans do, are you?

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Not at all. But it's a similar situation so I thought it was worth pointing out.

jgkojak 8 years, 5 months ago

I have U-verse and in Olathe my option is to go with Crapcast... I mean Comcast again...

of internet outages w/Comcast: weekly

with U-verse in 3 years: ZERO

But as a die-hard fan, sounds like I get to switch to Comcast

I guess I can watch on-line, but even when I DVR the games (which I do often), I usually don't know the score - knowing KU wins 97-48 against Emporia State doesn't really change the expected outcome, but takes away from the experience - that and watching it on a tiny screen.

At least they should offer a $20 a year KU package we could get -- I'd probably do that

jgkojak 8 years, 5 months ago

I didn't intend the big font, but I guess my point is made, huh...

thmdmph 8 years, 5 months ago

West / Midwest, Bryant / Wiggins, Lakers / JHawkers, LA / KU. Twins separated at birth, couldn't be more alike.

Steve Hillyer 8 years, 5 months ago

When TWC produced the Royals games from 2003-2007 they initially were not on the satellite systems, but eventually they worked out an agreement with a FSN alternate to carry the games. Having said that my life is not going to be negatively impacted if I miss the Washburn or Maryland Baltimore county game. If you are local and upset you'll miss the first football game then buy a ticket, usually plenty available.

Jeff Worthington 8 years, 5 months ago

The '03 Royals TV season was a mess. I live in northern Miami county, just outside of the TWC viewing area so I couldn't watch them at all, and that was our one winning season in the past 15 years roughly. We kept the sports bars in business that season, until Direct TV finally stepped up about 1/2 way through the season.

rschneider 8 years, 5 months ago

KU created a mess here. Why not wait and announce everything at once with all contract signed, sealed, etc.? Instead, you've got to have multiple updates to stories, confusion about who's getting content and who won't. Hard to be "excited" about this when the flow of information has been terrible.

Rock_Chalk_NYC 8 years, 5 months ago

Near as I can tell at this time...

Mens Basketball and Football

State of Kansas (and Nebraska ??? Go figure) : Now: Same Future: Same

Outside of Kansas: Now: Some games Future: No games.

Lets just wait and see.... right now it looks like this deal is just about money, not access and not recruiting.

Rock_Chalk_NYC 8 years, 5 months ago

Thanks Matt for the updates though... Lets hope as parts II and III are released this deal gets better. Hopefully TWC and Metro will license to other national carriers in areas not covered by their services.

Rusty Thomas 8 years, 5 months ago

Matt - I live north of Lawrence. Folks out here have either DirecTV or Dish, period. I have DirecTV and because of my address, I get WIBW out of Topeka. In the last two years, WIBW has either pre-empted games or has lost the signal during the games. I have spoken with DirecTV about these issues. THEY DON"T CARE! So, why, if we complain about not receiving Metro Sports would they care? Just saying....

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Because the number of complaints figures to be much higher than those from a couple of folks having outages here and there... Not saying your situation isn't maddening, just saying there's strength in numbers.

No guarantee it'll matter, but you'll never know if you don't try.

The_poster_kusports_needs 8 years, 5 months ago

So the bottom line here is that we are all in agreement that this was a terrible move by KU, but it might not be as bad if we all band together and complain? That's laughable.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Yep...complain and ask for Z to be fired.

Geezer 8 years, 5 months ago

Any deal that the AD makes is about money and not the fans. That's his job. Hope that at least firstrow will pick up the half dozen games.

westernkshawk 8 years, 5 months ago

So I suppose those of us who watched the "other six" games on local TV networks will be unable to watch them. Very few in western KS have Time Warner. Not that anybody has cared much about western KS up to this point; but it just happens that it works out so we can get those extra games over KSN.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

I have Dish.. I am screwed... Fire Zenger fire him now! This is complete BS!

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

I have just had about enough of this BS. large numbers will not have access that are customers to non-cable. Fine I will never change with these intimidating measures on getting us to change. Thanks very much Zenger now Go the F home to Kansas state.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Storm the streets with pitch forks and modern day flashlights to the castle...that is tearing apart KU nation into 2 separate sectors. We should be one not divided. Shame on you Zenger and KU athletics.

jhox 8 years, 5 months ago

Hate Time Warner. Hate their service. Hate their picture quality. I have Surewest and have no intention of switching. I guess local sports bars will see more of me in the future.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Good man..stand tall..don't be intimidated, by these redcoats.

jakejayhawk 8 years, 5 months ago

Ditto, switched the day Everest (now SureWest) came to my neighborhood. While SureWest isn't what Everest was, it is much better than TW. Not worth switching to TW for me. But as Matt says, patience is the key here. Nothing to complain about until we have the facts. If it isn't good for Jayhawk Nation we know how loud our voice can be. Ask CBS!!!

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Time to get a petition started...No doubt with satellite alone in the KC area and surrounding areas we will get 10,000 plus..What Zenger does not understand that many of us on Satellite have contracts and if we bail out of those we hurt our credit and pay huge penalties. It is not worth it and we the fan is hurt only because we want to watch our team play. This is criminal.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Please..please.. KU, if you are a legit newspaper..please ask questions questions on behalf of us who will be left out on Satellite and other providers that just does not seem to meet the Time Warner criteria. Please let them know they are leaving thousands tens of thousands behind..I ask KU sports to just take a look at Dish and Direct numbers in the Kansas and KC area. Thousands baby that will not be intimidated.

rschneider 8 years, 5 months ago

Lots of other questions that Tait and others either didn't ask or have full answers to. Why release this in parts? It's created more confusion than answers. Was KU exploring other options for third-tier rights? Was this truly the best option or just the first option with enough money? Also, if the off-the-record sources are so excited about it, then they should talk about why it's so great. If they won't, that including that in stories only fanned the flames of confusion. Too many questions and not enough answers.

Brad Farha 8 years, 5 months ago

I've had U-Verse for nearly 5 years now.....and I am seriously considering a switch to Time Warner now. Of course, I'll wait until they release more details, but I'd rather have Time Warner than miss out on the extra programming with U-Verse.

Foster Coburn 8 years, 5 months ago

This doesn't seem to address folks outside of the "footprint" at all. What about those of us who are NOT in Kansas or the KC Metro area? There is no cable in my neighborhood and TW isn't in Phoenix at all. So if the game isn't on DirecTV NATIONALLY, we don't get it. Don't tell me I'm missing six games because I've been able to watch those for MANY years before this stupid deal. Heck, they were even provided on a local Prescott channel for many years.

Zenger totally hosed the out-of-state fans two years ago by getting in bed with Bevo and putting a game on the Longhorn Network. Sure, it was broadcast over the air in Kansas. That doesn't help Jayhawk NATION. Nobody gets LHN and the KU telecast was blacked out outside of Kansas to protect the 12 people who get Bevovision.

I have no faith at all that the news they didn't announce today will make it any better.

Greg Lux 8 years, 5 months ago

rockchalkunleashed: I am also in AZ and for years I have subd to ESPN Full Court just to get the few games (no exhibition ) that are not on the regular channels. I just want to know I will still be able to get those games over directv. I get the Exhibition games over Swingbox from my daughters home in KC. Not great but at least I get the game, but I don't want to watch the whole season on Swingbox. I hope someone will get the answer soon I am running out of xanax... :P

Foster Coburn 8 years, 5 months ago

I subscribe to Full Court as well, but it is time for ESPN to move into the 21st century and show the games in HD. The picture quality of Full Court is nothing short of awful. Of course when highlights of those same games are shown later on ESPN, they look great. We PAY for the service so give us good quality. The sad reality is that if KU does screw up the deal, fans will find a way to watch the games (as you and I do with exhibitions). Some of these other methods are not above board, but it is our only choice since there isn't a legal way to watch.

AaronHawk19 8 years, 5 months ago

KU has announced MULTIPLE TIMES the last two days that all of these games will remain available on Full Court. Those outside Kansas are in the same boat as before.

AaronHawk19 8 years, 5 months ago

You will still get those games. KU officials announced that yesterday in an interview with Kietzman as well as a Star article.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Fire Zenger the jerk...he sold out not only on us in state satellite customers but the out of state KU fans that only want to watch their TEAM play and celebrate. Thank you zenger for your mole like activities, safe to say i have never been a fan of this cat as in K cat. Fire him he is not one of us.

Jeff Coffman 8 years, 5 months ago

Thank goodness Zenger brought us a national championship in track...let's see he has the Adidas extension and now a tv deal.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

He is the devil a kstate mole he needs go be fired and go back to farm city. He should not be trusted.

Bville Hawk 8 years, 5 months ago

Pitthawk, You need to tone down your rhetoric (aka shut the F*** up). Zenger is the best thing to happen to KU sports since the coming of Bill Self. If you are too stupid to see that just look back and compare him to the last 4 or 5 AD's we have had.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

I will open my eyes when not one KU supporter is left not missing a KU game in KANSAS.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

I would not say I am to stupid that is for sure but no I am not a big Zenger fan..just my OP...Just hope I am wrong. And no I will not shut the F up..I have every right as a alumi and ticket buyer to show my distrust... on the potential of a good portion of KU supporters being left out in left field just because they are under contracts from Dish, Direct, or other providers that TW will feel they can hold hostage. That is wrong plain and simple if indeed it is factual.

Displayhawk 8 years, 5 months ago

Geez Dude, you need to drink a Midol beer! Zenger is doing more than Al Bohl or Lew Perkins ever thought about doing. I for one, am glad he is here.

Phil Leister 8 years, 5 months ago

What the hell is everyone up in arms about? Football and basketball stays the exact same under the new deal. Are you really that upset about not getting to watch a volleyball or baseball game?

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

You seem to have Time Warner. They will have control of everything. Get the point. This is about subscriptions... are you understanding yet..KU sold us OUT!

Phil Leister 8 years, 5 months ago

Yeah. As my name indicates, I have time Warner.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Well if your overseas..good luck via internet.

chicagojhawk97 8 years, 5 months ago

As a Chicago resident and loyal alum, I have my concerns about this deal. In Chicago (Comcast), we have access to the Fox Sports network as part of an optional sports package; no Time Warner Sports option (as far as I know). Every time I flip through the Fox channels I see Baylor, Sooner & KSU programming. We have more alums in the Chicago area than any of these schools, combined. If this deal is intended solely to provide additional access only to Kansas and K.C. Metro households, I really think we missed the boat on this one. KU is a national brand and needs,at a minimum, to have exposure on par with any other Big XII schools.

Bill Skeet 8 years, 5 months ago

I'm in the Bay Area and have Comcast. Same situation as you described and I share your concern...

This story is confusing for the fans and alumni in state and out of state.

To understand what this means to any given person, there almost needs to be a guide that says: if you have X service, this is what it means. If you have Y, it means this. Etc.

The deal-- as it has be released -- does not seem particularly impressive.

Here's hoping the other half of the deal will fill in the blanks and provide satisfaction that far out-weighs the confusion and apprehension caused by the delay.

Tim Orel 8 years, 5 months ago

Colorado here, and while I have Dish, my cable choice is Comcast and I do NOT want to do that. I have a big Internet pipe, so if we're going to be looking forward, let's get reasonable streaming from this deal so that anyone worldwide can get to see the 'Hawks, not just a narrow collection of subscribers in towns in Kansas. It's very important for recruiting as well - athletes want their families and fans to be able to see them perform, not just BBall and football, but these shoulder sports as well.

JayHawkFanToo 8 years, 5 months ago

Looks like fans in the KC metro area that do not have access to TW/Metro Sports will be royally screwed as well. I am with Surewest (in Olathe) and it is not looking good.

AaronHawk19 8 years, 5 months ago

When you play all but 4 regular season b-ball games on NATIONAL TV you have plenty of exposure.

vann_dango 8 years, 5 months ago

So I am guessing this deal cuts out most of Lawrence seeing as they Konogolgy or (whatever its called now)??

On another note is ESPNu considered a 3rd tier? especially since its not readily available with most basic cable packages.

Nick Cole 8 years, 5 months ago

Matt, I live in the KC area do not have cable or satellite. I'm one of the people who cut the cord a few years ago. I get my television over the air via digital antenna. In the past, I've been able to watch the Jayhawk Network games on channel 38. Will I still be able to watch the games via over the air programming, or will I now have to frequent a local watering hole more often than I already do? This question needs to be answered. I appreciate your help on this. Great job with the breakdown and keeping us KU fans up to date on all the latest. Thanks for your hard work.

ohjayhawk 8 years, 5 months ago

Another thing I haven't seen in the limited info that has been provided so far is if the Jayhawk Network games would still be offered on ESPN3. They have been for the past several years, but I am wondering if this will change that arrangement. Living in Ohio, that's been the only way to see the Jayhawk Network games. At least I'm lucky enough to live in a market that has part of WV in it and now have local stations that carry the Big 12 Network games!

Tim Orel 8 years, 5 months ago

You gained, Colorado lost from those realignments. Now I get the Pac12 games - yuck!

ohjayhawk 8 years, 5 months ago

You definitely have my sympathies. That's as bad as all of the Big 10 games I get subjected to. At least the Big 10 has had some decent teams in the past few years.

Chris1955 8 years, 5 months ago

This announcement sounds as though the car slid off the road into a ditch. I live in Houston, and have seen what this crap causes.

The Longhorn network very much overplayed their in negotiating with Direct TV and other cable companies. Direct TV and others told them to F' off. As a result, the Longhorn network is only available to about 15% of the homes in the greater Houston area.

Another example: The idiotic Houston Astros ownership decided to sell their television rights, and sucker the Houston Rockets into joining their foolish choice. They went with Comcast. Comcast, like the Longhorn network, overplayed their negotiating hand. As a result, the Rocket games were only viewable to Comcast subscribers in Houston, and only available to about 25% of the homes in Houston. The Astros are not only horrible, but have no viewers either (maybe a good thing). Now, Houston media viewers were not able to pressure Direct TV into contracts with either the Longhorn network, or Comcast.

The lesson to be learned here is that unless the bid award is going to go to a company like ESPN, Fox, Direct TV, etc., the viewers will be most certainly screwed. The innocent will be punished.

jhox 8 years, 5 months ago

This is exactly what I fear will happen to KU fans living in Kansas. This is just the first step.

I don't hate Zenger over this. He's just doing his job, which is to maximize revenues and attempt to put a better product on the field / court in every sport. All things considered I think he's doing a great job. But it still stinks that the average fan always seems to get hosed in the process.

jhox 8 years, 5 months ago

One risk related to all of this is that KU starts losing fans to KSU or MU, because they have better access to watching their games for free. At this level of "pay TV" that's unlikely, but I have a feeling this is just the tip of the iceberg.

kssmiles 8 years, 5 months ago

A decade ago fans complained about access to games. Hopefully the AD remembers those problems. MU & KSU had deals with Metro sports and half their fans didn't have access to the games. I always thought that was second rate.

I live in KC and do not have TW. Let's hope Metro sports is producing the content and will be showing the events on other cable provider's. I'm willing to be patient and wait for further details. But if you have to have TW to watch the games then Zinger screwed over a lot alumnus in his biggest base.

kckuguy 8 years, 5 months ago

@kssmiles, you and me and everyone in KC needs to keep pushing this point. The fine folks in Lawrence think everyone in KC get Metro. I in the past have laughed at the other schools doing this exact same thing. This is bush league. Personally, I wouldn't switch back to TWC even if my ole KU relied on it. This is nothing short of blackmail. Can't believe it is coming to this.

kckuguy 8 years, 5 months ago

TWC is losing their $ss in KC because of their past " WE don't give a damn" attitude. That is why they are offering $200 for people to come back and saying "we have changed". I have had U-Verse for almost 5 years and very happy. I am not going to be intimidated to change cable providers because Zinger took a padded hand shake. Metro Sports is a TWC channel. They are not going to allow a competitor to air it. If a customer wants Metro Sports they must subscribe to TWC, period. This was funny last year when MU was on Metro and half of KC couldn't watch several of their games, but KU doing this ? This is literally selling out your loyal fan base so KU volleyball and soccer will be on TV ? This is telling half of the KC market to go to hell and then we drive on the hiway and see billboards saying KC is a KU town ? Matt, you tell us to raise hell with the other cable companies because Zinger tells us if we want to be KU fans then you must use the cable provider I tell you to use? What kind of crap is that ? If it was such a lucrative deal I would think he would have released that as well. What will happen is less people will be watching KU games on TV and Zinger will have to come out and explain. Most people wont even know about this until they try to find the game on TV. You want to watch fans bitch, I feel sorry for the poor gal answering the phone at the KU office when thousands of people are told, well if you want to watch our games you will have to switch to TWC . We will see how fast Zinger can fix that problem.

Matt Tait 8 years, 5 months ago

Just to be clear, I'm not telling you to do anything, I'm just telling you what people are telling me. What you do with the information (good or bad) is entirely up to your discretion.

Steve Hillyer 8 years, 5 months ago

Metro Sports is also on Comcast and WOW in Lawrence.

Brian Skelly 8 years, 5 months ago

It's obvious that the main concern of most the folks on here seems to be access to KU stuff that isnt normally on "national" TV. My guess is that is a legitimate concern. Now TimeWarner has to 'sell' (both literally and figuratively) to other pay TV services.

If KU (and TW) were smart they wouldnt go the way of the Longhorn Network -- although im afraid we're clearly in the mold of that -- by getting greedy on carriage fees. Even if that works out reasonably well (and im not sure we should assume that, at least not yet), it's hard to envision KU/TimeWarner being able to convince cable providers in Chicago, Dallas, St. Louis, Denver (major markets with lots of KU alums) to take on the channel regardless. Even if the carriage fee was ONE CENT it's hard to envision companies willing take up a slot in what they offer for less than 1% of its subscriber base. Now, putting it on a 'sports tier' is a different story, and my guess is that would be a BEST CASE scenario. It's also highly unlikely to happen. There just isnt going to be demand for it.

DirecTV, UVerse, FiOS have little or no incentive to package the station nationally. Even if its cheap. Again, best case scenario is sports tier. Even that will be a tough sell for those carriers. I live in St. Louis and have DirecTV... my guess is there's no shot at me seeing any of this.

All that said, I do believe that they'll be able to get the other cable providers locally to take on the channel. That is, under the assumption it's not going to cost them an arm and a leg. My guess is anyone in KC and Kansas will eventually get this. Im quite sure unless they're giving it away that this will take off. Longer term though, I think in the KC metro area you'll be able to get this eventually.

This also points out however why doing this media rights thing piece meal has its limits. Why would anyone in Houston or Dallas want KU sports all the time? But if its a conference deal, with UT, TCU, Baylor, etc -- no one bats an eye. And the number of subscribers jumps so exponentially that one's head spins from it. Yes, your still splitting the 'pie' amongst your conference mates, but is there any question how much bigger the pie is?

The chicken little stuff needs to stop though. There has never ever been a major cable provider who's done this with an individual school. I dont necessarily buy Matt's comparing this to TW signing the Lakers up, but there are some parallels. Scale isnt one of them however. If KU puts access and exposure over immediate $$$ this could work well. Or at least reasonably well. It's another revenue stream folks. Let's hope the stream turns into a river.

Brian Skelly 8 years, 5 months ago

--- Matt ---

I would be curious however if KU higher ups anticipated folks being upset by this. Im still a believer that long term this is a good thing. But it strikes me as alarmingly short-sided to come out media wise with bits and pieces.

It strikes me as a PR blunder that could have been avoided, especially when the end result should be a positive, it's certainly not coming out that way amongst the vocal minority here.

Just curious as to your thoughts. Thanks for the articles and posts btw.

Steve Hillyer 8 years, 5 months ago

Does FSN carry other sports besides basketball for KSU, OU, etc? The only benefit I see for KU going with TWC is the other sports will get some coverage but if the other schools are also getting that from FSN then this makes no sense. There is no way that I can see that KU will get the national exposure signing with TWC than if they had signed with FSN.

Lou_Meister 8 years, 5 months ago

According to research firm SNL Kagan, about 48% of cable subscribers in Kansas City (including JoCo), Topeka, and Wichita/Hutch are customers of Uverse, DirecTV, or Dish. Since customers of these systems do not have access to Metro Sports, in one fell swoop Zenger just cut the Kansas/KC viewer base in half.....just so Time Warner customers can watch soccer or track! I think it's time to cut my WEF donation.

otaKU 8 years, 5 months ago

Here's a thought...why doesn't everybody quit freaking out until the other half of deal is released? Maybe then all your "questions" will be answered.

rschneider 8 years, 5 months ago

Shouldn't have been done in parts to start with - that's a huge part of the problem. Release it all at once and let everyone know what's going on. KU had to know there were would questions and concerns about this in the short term. Yet they went ahead anyway. Whatever angst, criticism they get is deserved.

Larry Smith 8 years, 5 months ago

• Men's hoops games shown in Kansas via other media outlets and/or cable providers

Now – All

With the new deal – All

Do people just choose not to read the article?

Sparko 8 years, 5 months ago

I am also angry at this--I'll direct my complaints to the athletic department. TWC is an awful brand. Michigan got $7M more for their Adidas deal. Zenger is not impressing me with his business sense right now at all. TWC is a cancer.

Lou_Meister 8 years, 5 months ago

Here's an e-mail I recived from Marchiony:

Thanks for your e-mail. Metro Sports, which is carried on Time Warner Cable and Comcast, will be the exclusive local carrier of just six (two exhibitions, four non-conference) of KU’s 30+ men’s basketball games, one football game and 45 other live events. All the other 27 or so KU basketball regular-season games will be available locally and nationally in the same way they have been for the last several years.

In addition, Metro Sports will annually carry some 600 hours of new, innovative, KU-themed programming that will bring great new coverage – locally and nationally – of Kansas and highlight the KU brand in new ways.

This agreement alters the local – not national – broadcasting arrangement of a small minority of KU men’s basketball games, something we feel is well worth the tremendously increased exposure KU will receive locally and nationally.

Jim Marchiony Associate Athletics Director, Public Affairs University of Kansas 1651 Naismith Drive Lawrence, KS. 66045 O: 785-864-3359

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

This agreement alters the local – not national – broadcasting arrangement of a small minority of KU men’s basketball games, something we feel is well worth the tremendously increased exposure KU will receive locally and nationally.... Well what a bunch of crap now I am a minority...Who cant get TW only Dish or Direct. Looks like KU fans are not created as equals. Fine...I will be canceling my football tickets tomorrow.

TxJyHawk 8 years, 5 months ago

If the 4 non-conference basketball games are no longer on the Full Court package, then it DOES change the national arrangement.

It basically means we can no longer get those games at all.

Pitthawk34 8 years, 5 months ago

Yes I am angry..Yes I may be out of line...Yes I may regret some of the things I said...All I know is if this deal will take fans away from a portion of the games, that would be wrong. Maybe this is not factual but maybe they should put it all out and not segments fuming the flames. If indeed any KU fans in the state of kansas will be left out in the cold just because they have Dish, Direct, or other providers that TW is going to hold hostage, all I am saying that it is wrong and Zenger should know better. This is a quality of life issue for many of us KU fans and we should be allowed to watch every game. If i have to buy additional programming from Dish I will be more than happy but it had better damn well be available. You are probably right the big 12 may be doomed in future so if indeed this step is to show BIG and Pac that we will bring them KC and other areas of the country with our huge Alumi then that is great but what is not acceptable is for one KU supporter, ticket buyer, or viewer to be left out in the cold. I don't pay a lot of money to KU athletics but over the last 10 years have attended nearly 40 KU football games, 20 mens basketball games, and about 30 baseball games. My tuition have been paid in full therefore I believe I have a right to fume when I fear being left behind.

Janet Olin 8 years, 5 months ago

Yeah, our community in Olathe has 2 choices: Comcast (which sucks) or Surewest (which doesn't carry Metro Sports). What exactly are we supposed to do? This is a big deal in JoCo with Many. KUAthletics. Supporters. Prepare for a big ruckus, or a big drop in financial support from the metro area.

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