Tuesday, June 18, 2013

New TV deal expands KU athletics coverage, access


Kansas Athletics and IMG College, along with Time Warner Cable and Kansas City’s Metro Sports, have teamed up on an endeavor that will bring Kansas University sports fans unprecedented access to KU athletics during the coming year and well into the future.

The deal, which will provide live coverage of KU sporting events to homes throughout Kansas on various media outlets, makes KU the final Big 12 Conference school to sign a contract concerning its Tier-3 television rights, which were a sticking point for the Big 12 throughout the conference realignment movement during the past couple of summers.

Texas is affiliated with the ESPN-backed Longhorn Network; Baylor, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU and Texas Tech have deals with Fox; and Iowa State and West Virginia have agreements with Mediacom and ROOT in their respective markets.

KU athletic director Sheahon Zenger said the deal to expand KU’s broadcasting efforts had been in the works for a while and added that being the last university to sign on the dotted line did not hurt KU in any way.

“This is Kansas,” Zenger told the Journal-World on Monday. “And Kansas ought to be doing something like this. When Time Warner Cable approached us with this concept, we knew, if done right, it could greatly benefit Kansas Athletics and our fan base. We are eager to work with Metro Sports to bring this exciting concept to life.”

Beginning with the 2013-14 school year, Metro Sports will televise more than 50 live KU events on the revamped Jayhawk Network and also provide 600 hours of additional “shoulder” programing, which will include pre- and post-game shows for Jayhawk football and men’s basketball games, a weekly magazine-style show, “Hawk Talk” radio show simulcasts, a social-media-centered show for fans, live coverage of news conferences, a “Jayhawk Rewind” highlight show, a quarterly “Jayhawk Legends” series and quarterly KU academic specials.

Because of the Big 12 Conference’s television agreement with ESPN and Fox Sports, the live-game broadcasts on Metro Sports will be offered only to viewers in the state and the Kansas City metro area, but the additional shoulder programing will be available to Time Warner’s millions of customers nationwide.

The fact that the Tier-3 deal is a joint effort with an already established network makes it so KU will not be responsible for providing programing 24 hours a day and, instead, will be in a position to enhance its already strong presence in homes across the state.

“This is the backbone of providing Jayhawk fans with access to all of our sports in a way that they’ve never experienced before,” Zenger said of the deal.

Perhaps the best part for KU is that today’s announcement appears to be one that could grow into something bigger and better down the road.

KU administrators Todd Kober, Jim Marchiony and Larry Keating worked closely with Jason Booker, general manager for Jayhawk IMG Sports Marketing, to bring the Jayhawk Network into the modern era and bring more exposure to KU’s entire athletic department.

“This will extend the Jayhawk brand significantly while providing corporate partners with many new ways to support the Jayhawks and reach one of the most attractive and passionate fan bases in college sports,” Booker said.

During upcoming sports year, the new-and-improved Jayhawk Network will provide coverage of one football game, six men’s basketball games, as many as 16 women’s basketball games, nine volleyball matches, eight baseball games and up to 12 live softball, soccer and track and field events.


Jeff Coffman 9 years, 5 months ago

Thank goodness soccer was much was the deal?

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

The final numbers have not been released yet and there are a few other factors in play that will determine this.

BCSwede 9 years, 5 months ago

How does that effect those with DirectTV and Dish network?

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

That's what I was thinking when I read it. Along with all the other cable companies and Google.

JayhawkLifer 9 years, 5 months ago

That is the question. Matt do you know if we can still see the non-ESPN/Fox games on local channels if we don't have TWC/Metro Sports? We have always been able to in the past (if you are in the local area that is), so does this change anything or is it just an enhancement and games will still be shown as always? Thanks!

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

KU hoops games will be shown on a variety of stations throughout Kansas. This doesn't change that. All this does is bring Metro and Kansas City in as a bigger partner and links with Time Warner to get that additional programming to viewers in other parts of the country.

It's a good thing, folks. And there's more to come. It'll all be out sooner rather than later and you'll like where this is headed. Trust me.

Jeremy LeMaster 9 years, 5 months ago

I am interested in whether it will be available on the local channels in, say, Wichita and will the games/programming be available online (it did say the "modern era"... which is the web).

Pitthawk34 9 years, 5 months ago

Not Looking good for us Dish and Direct customers.

Curtis Lange 9 years, 5 months ago

This looks to be more a shot at Google than Dish/DirecTV. "Oh, you Kansas Citians want to leave us and head over to Google Fiber? Hahahaha. Well, we'll take all your beloved KU games then."

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

It's too bad KU doesn't get their own network like Texas, and sell it too many different systems. Don't get me wrong, Metro Sports is great, but there are many other markets out there now besides Time Warner. DirecTV, Dish Network, several different cable options, plus Google is in the KC area and will have more people hooked up in time for football season, and definitely by basketball season. I know the games are on KSMO, at least they were this year. Maybe with the new deal with Metro Sports, the games will be on that channel now, and in that case, a lot of people will NOT be able to see the games unless they go to a bar or happen to have a friend that has Time Warner Cable.

Anyways, congrats on a new contract. However, if it means it limits your exposure to only the customers of one cable subscription company, then poor choice.

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

Speaking of Tier 1, 2, and 3 rights... if ESPN and Fox are the Tier 1 and 2 channels, and Metro Sports is tier 3 now, where does CBS come in since KU usually plays basketball on CBS once or twice a season before the tourney. The Big XII doesn't have a contract with them right? Is that just an NCAA thing where they get to pick games to show on CBS during the season?

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

ESPN is the tier 1 deal. That means they've agreed to show a certain number of games in different sports and they have 1st choice on which games those will be. They air these games on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPN-U.

Fox is the tier 2 deal which also means they've agreed to show a certain number of games of different sports and obviously they have 2nd choice. They show games on Fox, Fox Sports regional channels, FX and sometimes Fox College Sports.

Same goes for KU's tier 3 deal in that they agree to show a certain number of games in different sports and they have last choice as to which games those will be. They show most of these on Kansas Cox 22 (across most of the state), KSMO (in KC), and now Metro Sports. It sounds like most of this will still be shown on the typical local or regional channels it used to be on, but it will also now be live on Metro Sports KC in addition to Metro Sports KC showing a bunch of added content as well. Also, Metro Sports KC is carried on Time Warner Cable, Comcast, and Knology as well.

CBS on the other hand reached a deal with ESPN to air some Big 12, PAC-12, and ACC basketball games on their network and these are games that otherwise would be on ESPN(or ABC), but CBS is paying them some big bucks to let them air them instead.

Here's a link to a Sporting News article on the CBS ESPN deal.

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

Thanks for the article. I've wondered how CBS fit in with only talk of ESPN and Fox. Hard to believe ESPN didn't want the KU-Ohio St. game last year. At least I think that was one of the CBS games. Eh, maybe CBS saw it as a way to get a BIG 10 team on there.

Jeremy LeMaster 9 years, 5 months ago

I like our model, it is up to each University to make the Tier 3 work (and be valuable). Why share something that isn't going to be picked up by the major networks?

DoubleDD 9 years, 5 months ago

I have to say I'm a little confused. It seems KU has taking a different approach than other big 12 teams when it comes to tier 3 rights. I figured KU for a shoe in at Fox (as Fox seems to love the Big 12). Yet here we are with Time Warner. I guess I have to ask the question? Has Time Warner done this with any other College? or has KU become Time Warner's college of preference? I'm also wondering about the dollar amount for this partnership. I also find it interesting the Time Warner approached KU about this deal. What do we think Jayhawks? I'm starting to think this just might be a great thing.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

To my knowledge, Time Warner has not done this with other schools, but give it some time for details of the full deal to be released and you'll understand in a much clearer manner that this is a good thing for KU athletics.

Kyle Helmer 9 years, 5 months ago

Well since TW is the worst cable provider in the history of mankind, I am not overly thrilled. The basketball games better still be on 62, or Zenger is going to catch hell for this. I know those of us without TW will not be able to see the 1st football game just like last year. Not good.

Cameron Cederlind 9 years, 5 months ago

You make it sound like some of us have a choice on providers.

kateJhawk 9 years, 5 months ago

Not true. Especially if you are not living in the KC area (or MIdwest, for that matter) or are leasing an apartment/home. Both of these factors greatly limit the choices you have. Now that I live in CA, I'm always searching for "creative" ways to watch the game, in case it's not available through my provider, which, by the way, was the ONLY choice I had, due to my apartment's location.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

This won't impact the basketball games you've always been able to see. As pointed out in the second paragraph, all of these new events plus the ones that you're used to seeing will be available throughout Kansas on a variety of media outlets.

In addition, the pay-per-view Full Court package will remain an option for everyone across the country.

And there's a second part to this deal that will make life even better. Just give it some time to be released...

LeBo 9 years, 5 months ago

Another example of "KU." Football drives the boat. KU does not have an oar or a boat to row in.

ccarp 9 years, 5 months ago

Why not stream this content online? Cut out the middle man and reduce the overhead of broadcasting on television. Will Time Warner make the games available to other providers? How much is the deal worth? What is the duration of the contract? I'm glad that Zenger is happy with the deal, but I doubt that I will ever see any of the coverage.

Chuck Woodling 9 years, 5 months ago

Then there's the HD question. MetroSports doesn't do HD. Or does Metro plan to add HD? Just one more unanswered question in a story that read like a KU Athletics press release.

jj14 9 years, 5 months ago

That was the only reason I read this article - to find out if Metro Sports was FINALLY going to be broadcast in HD. Games are basically unwatchable on this channel if you have a nice HD TV. As usual, the most important points are left out of the article.

rockchalk_dpu 9 years, 5 months ago

This was my first thought. Nothing is worse than watching a broadcast on an HD TV and not having the picture be in HD.

Philip Nguyen 9 years, 5 months ago

I kept on reading this article to see if there's an answer to this question also, I just don't understand why it's still not HD.

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

Metro is in HD on Time Warner channel 1310, but it doesn't look like the HD feed is available on Knology aka WOW in Lawrence, which sucks.

I think Metro Sports is also in HD on Comcast Olathe channel 258.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I haven't heard anything about the HD aspect... I'll look into it.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I know there's a lot not in the article but that was by design according to the way KU wanted to handle releasing this news... There was a lot of info they were not at liberty to release yet but they will be releasing that soon and this will all sound like a MUCH better deal and make a lot more sense.

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

Then why not wait for all the details before releasing something that raises more questions than answers?

However, thanks for your replies so far. You've answered a few of those questions for us.

westernkshawk 9 years, 5 months ago

I'm wondering if this will provide any additional coverage in western KS. The western part of the state has some of the most rabid Jayhawk fans but we are always the ones who are the least considered (and the last to receive benefits, if we ever do) when these types of deals are discussed.

Rock_Chalk_NYC 9 years, 5 months ago

This stinks. At least the way its described in this article. Perhaps I'm jumping the gun but it sounds pretty lame.

Everyone else in Big 12 is with a major NETWORK. We went with a Cable Provider.

Dish ? Direct TV ? Optimum ? etc.. etc...

Going with Fox or one of the network channels would have been FAR SUPERIOR for entire market access and thus eventual recruiting. Isn't that half the point?!?

I hope this is just preliminary information, but I doubt it since Matt is a very good reporter and #2, its a Cable Provider not a Network.

Oh well, 1 more football game and 6 basketball games not shown throughout Major Markets around the country... oh wait, that is a big deal... grrr....

John Strayer 9 years, 5 months ago

My thoughts exactly! Pretty embrassing that a "blue blood" basketball school has to have a deal with a local cable company. I'm so sick and tired of seeing everyone elses coaching shows on KSU, ISU, etc. But not being in Kansas I can't watch Bill Self's show. Why not get an agreement with FOX and broadcast on all cable/dish systems. Isn't the number of TVs important.

Good grief.

And while I'm at it when in the hell is ESPN going to broadcast the FullCourt package in HD. Good's 2013 and everyone has big screen HDTVs in their living rooms. For $129 I would think they could improve the service a bit.

Gary McCullough 9 years, 5 months ago

I dropped FullCourt two years ago when I discovered most KU games were available with the standard sports package on Dish in HD.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I can't say this enough, folks... Patience, patience, patience. There are more details here and more to be released that will calm your fears and make you realize that this is a good deal for KU.

We'll release it as soon as they make it available.

Robert Brock 9 years, 5 months ago

The B1G has their own network. The Big 12? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Dale Stringer 9 years, 5 months ago

This could be very bad. I live in Missouri (Go Mules!) but just outside of the metro and I have Charter cable. TWC doesn't come out this far yet. I hope I can still watch everything.

RockChalk26 9 years, 5 months ago

Being a Comcast subscriber here in Chicago, looks like I'm getting screwed. I guess there are a lot of grainy games at my desktop in the near future.

Foster Coburn 9 years, 5 months ago

I don't see how this is a good thing at all for those of us who are NOT in the local footprint. I'm in Arizona and I'm pretty sure I'll be able to watch LESS in the future no matter how hard I try or to what I subscribe.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I can totally see why you're thinking that, but you have to remember this is just Part I of a 2 or 3 part deal here... I can assure you that if this were the extent of the deal, it would've never happened. Just let it all come out first and then you'll see it's much better than it looks today.

Kyle Helmer 9 years, 5 months ago

Matt, ant timeframe on when we can expect these details?

Chris1955 9 years, 5 months ago

Folks, let's ask ourselves why KU has agreed to a 3rd tier TV plan that doesnt appear to be what most of their followers are excited about? Since we don't know the details about this contract, let's ask ourselves why we would commit to something like this? Why would KU be the last university in the Big 12 to ink a deal for 3rd tier broadcasting rights?

Why did KU agree to the recent athletic complex on the west side of Lawrence? Why has KU made a big push to become much better in sports other than Men's BB? Congratulations to the Women's Track & Field 2013 National Champions. I think I also read somewhere that KU has tightened up their academic admission standards(not sports related, but important). Are these justs goals that Zenger has toward leaving his imprint on KU athletics, or does it mean there is another goal in mind for KU?

These things happen for a reason. What do you think the reason might be? Eventual departure from the Big 12? Where to?

Robert Brown 9 years, 5 months ago

Please, let's not start a discussion of KU leaving the Big 12.

Stephan123 9 years, 5 months ago

Raising the academic admission standard has been in the works for over seven years. KU is certainly not deciding all of a sudden to win a national championship in track becasue it wants to position itself to jump leagues. KU is not going anywhere.

jajandera 9 years, 5 months ago

Does this mean the basketball games early in the season like vs fort Hays state and emporia state will be live and not a 2 hour delay? Can someone please answer this

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

Not sure what you're asking exactly, but I'll try to answer it. The games will all be shown live (just as has been the case throughout most of Kansas in the past) and the replays will still be available.

Per the release: In addition, Jayhawk men’s basketball JTV games will continue to be available live on WIBW (Topeka) and tape delayed on WOW Channel 6 (Lawrence) in addition to the weekly “magazine style” show.

jgkojak 9 years, 5 months ago

Question: For those of us in the KC Area who have U-VERSE, DISH or GOOGLE, what option do we have for watching the game LIVE on and actual TV?

Robert Wuerdeman 9 years, 5 months ago

Curious what it will mean for me in SE Kansas. We are currently considered part of the Tulsa market. I have picked up several games on a Denver channel we get though so hopefully that will not change.

Robert Brown 9 years, 5 months ago

I think I need a definition of Tier 3 media rights. I pulled an article from several years back indicating that KU had signed an agreement with ESPN Regional to broadcast basketball games. I always thought that was Tier 3 and was impressed that in 2005, just these basketball games were worth $40M over 7 years. That is $5.7M per year in what I thought were Tier 3 rights. The Longhorn Network will average $15M per year over its contract, but are not getting that amount today, so I always liked our model from a financial standpoint.

I assume this new agreement means that there will no longer be an agreement with ESPN regional, which essentially allowed me to see almost any KU basketball game here in Houston. These games would presumably be on this new network which is a cable provider which means I will not be able to see these games which are minor games.

I would have to think that if this ESPN deal was a Tier 3 deal, then this new deal should pay close to $10M/yr for it to maximize potential. Interesting that financial terms were not mentioned in that article.

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

KU renegotiated that deal you linked to again in 2007 to $65 million and $6.5 million per year.

[url=]Kansas Athletics to Receive $65 Million from New Multi-Media Rights Contract with Host Communications and ESPN Regional Television[/url]

KU also has an $86 million deal with IMG which pays KU $7.2 million per year, as reported here. [url=]KU inks $86m deal with IMG[/url]

Also, from the official KU release they say, "The network's Kansas Athletics non-game programming will also be available to millions of Time Warner Cable customers across the country via video on demand."

The official release says this as well, "In addition, Jayhawk men's basketball JTV games will continue to be available live on WIBW (Topeka) and tape delayed on WOW Channel 6 (Lawrence) in addition to the weekly "magazine style" show."

Hopefully they release more information later, but you can read [url=]KU's official release here.[/url]

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

KU renegotiated the deal you linked to again in 2007. It now pays KU $65 million for $6.5 million per year.


Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

KU renegotiated the deal you linked to again in 2007. It now pays KU $65 million for $6.5 million per year.

[url=]Kansas Athletics to Receive $65 Million from New Multi-Media Rights Contract with Host Communications and ESPN Regional Television[/url]

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

KU renegotiated the deal you linked to again in 2007. It now pays KU $65 million for $6.5 million per year.

"Kansas Athletics to Receive $65 Million from New Multi-Media Rights Contract with Host Communications and ESPN Regional Television"

KU also has a deal with IMG for $86 million and pays KU $7.2 million per year. "KU inks $86m deal with IMG"

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

Good grief, I don't know what happened here.

Hopefully the extra replies from me will get removed soon as I can't edit them anymore.

Robert Brown 9 years, 5 months ago

Thanks for the information. I am not sure what you posted that was removed. Is the ESPN Regional Television contract considered Tier 3?

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

Yes, it's part of KU's tier 3 media rights.

Ryan Gerstner 9 years, 5 months ago

According to Marchiony on 810, KU doesn't get paid a penny more. This deal was about exposure. IMG already has KU's rights locked up and they made the decision with KU's consent. If you were getting the games on ESPN Gameplan, you'll still be able to do that. As of today, the primary people getting screwed are KU fans in KC on AT&T, Surewest, Dish, and DirecTV.

Mo Mosallaei 9 years, 5 months ago

It looks like the deal enhances access for the locals and shuts out the out of town Jayhawk fans. I live in San Francisco and I'll be able to watch several other Big 12 schools networks but not KU's.

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

It looks like all of the non-game added content will be available to any TWC subscriber anywhere in the country.

From the official release, "The network's Kansas Athletics non-game programming will also be available to millions of Time Warner Cable customers across the country via video on demand."

There's just a little bit more info from the official release here:

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

Thanks for the link.

The parts I thought were the most interesting...

" Kansas Athletics and IMG College, the multimedia rights holder for KU Athletics, have agreed to a long-term television partnership with Time Warner Cable Sports" ... A long term deal with a new company taking over the games???

"When Time Warner Cable Sports approached us with this concept, we knew, if done right, it could greatly benefit Kansas Athletics and our fan base," Kansas Director of Athletics Sheahon Zenger said. ... The key part being 'if done right'. From what someone else said on here, it wasn't done right for Misery.

These statements bring up more questions like:

  1. Why get into a long term deal with someone different when they haven't done a single game for you yet?

  2. Why follow in misery's footsteps, especially if their fans weren't happy about it?

  3. Can you opt out of the deal if you aren't satisfied with their coverage or they don't show games across the state/country as advertised?

  4. What about people who don't have TWC or live in Lawrence/Topeka?

At least there was one more interesting line in the article...

"Kansas Athletics programming distribution details for the rest of the state are being discussed." ... Hopefully this includes other companies that are still in the same markets as TWC.

lv_jhwk 9 years, 5 months ago

"When Time Warner Cable approached us with this concept, we knew, if done right, it could greatly benefit Kansas Athletics and our fan base."

Since I'm not seeing any mention of a benefit for the fan base that lives outside of the state borders (or even those without TW), I'm figuring that this was not done right. Would love to know I'm wrong.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I think you are. Again... let it all come out first and then it'll be easier for you to see what went down here.

This entire move was made with the idea of expanding KU's brand on a national level, not narrowing it and making it only relevant in Kansas. That'll all make much more sense when they release the remaining info.

jgkojak 9 years, 5 months ago

So... how does that work for Olathe, where we don't get Time Warner?

Kman_blue 9 years, 5 months ago

Metro Sports is on channel 68 and 258 on Comcast Olathe.

kckuguy 9 years, 5 months ago

Jim Marchiony told the KC Star that all of the games would be available "state wide". This deal sounds like the deal MU had last year with TWC. Metro Sports did not sub contract the games out and if a fan did not have TWC they couldn't watch several games. I thought that was funny, but with KU this is not funny at all. I have AT&T, so that means I will not be able to watch at least 6 games and I live in KC ? I hope this is just not good reporting by someone and that KU games will be available to all of their fans in the midwest. This sounds like a contract that UMKC would sign, not a blue blood school. We need a follow up story filling in the holes.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I believe the Los Angeles Lakers had/have a deal similar to this, where their games/rights are tied to a single company and then are shared with others throughout the state/region. In addition, the Lakers network produces the additional shoulder content which has further promoted the Laker brand throughout the country.

I'm not real familiar with that venture, but here's the release from Time Warner from a few years back...

5to6 9 years, 5 months ago

I hope that they paid through the nose, hoping to draw consumers from SureWest and even more so to forestall people switching to Google Fiber. But as bad as TWC is, I know I'm not switching, so unless they find a way to get it on other carriers, I guess I'll be getting some of my life back when this kicks in.

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 5 months ago

I'm in Omaha, closer than many in western Kansas, and I have no idea if the many KU fans here will be able to watch these extra telecasts. This article raised a lot more questions than it seems to have answered. UGH

average 9 years, 5 months ago

If we believe the Star's version of things:

BBall (and other) games that were on KSMO (62) last year will be moving to Metro Sports (which is only available on TWC and WOW). Fortunately for many of us in Lawrence, they'll still be on WIBW in Topeka. Time to get the ol' antenna rotator working.

Looking at another sports franchise, the Wizards/Sporting soccer club migrated from Metro Sports to KSMO and saw viewership double. Hopefully we don't see viewership halve going the other way.

We aren't the only Big XII school with a similar contract. ISU's contract is with Mediacom, the cable provider in Des Moines and some other Iowa markets. On the other hand... do we want to follow ISU's lead?

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

This is definitely not KU following ISU's lead... It may seem like that today, and I understand why, but the full details will make it crystal clear that this is not the case.

JayhawkRock78 9 years, 5 months ago

We had great bBall coverage here in Houston last year. I hope this story has holes in it because it sounds like the state of Kansas has better coverage while the rest of the country misses out. If so, it hurts our brand and visibility with recruits.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I hear ya. But in the end you'll see it's completely this opposite. The total deal should help KU's brand and visibility tremendously, nationwide.

Kyle Helmer 9 years, 5 months ago

Will Time Warner Cable SportsNet come in to play?

colreader 9 years, 5 months ago

There are 10,000 Kansas alums here in the state of Colorado. I really want to watch more than 1 KU football game. I hope through DirecTV and/or the new FOX-1 network that we will all be able to, somehow, some way. By the way, AT&T All Access last year had 1 football game online with video, if I remember correctly. All the rest were audio only through the subscription service.

Robert Brown 9 years, 5 months ago

This will not affect the other football games which fall under the Tier 1 and Tier 2 contracts with FOX and ESPN.

Tim Orel 9 years, 5 months ago

My concerns as well. I liked having a chance to see various KU games on Fox Sports and I think even Altitude. Anyway, having Dish and living in Denver, I have a feeling I'm going to see much less than I want.

Steve Hillyer 9 years, 5 months ago

I'm going to assume this is similar to when TWC had the Royals, Metro Sports produced it and called it RSTN and made it available to other providers throughout the midwest, not sure how this will affect people in other areas of the country. What I remember most though when the TWC had the Royals is it was by far the most amateurish production of any sports broadcast, made high school cable all access channels look like ESPN.

Lefty54 9 years, 5 months ago

Lawrence Journal-World and Matt Tait- the sign of a bad newspaper article is one which raises more questions than it answers. Clearly from reading all the comments, the readers are more confused after reading this article than ever. This seems to be a vague, confusing article. Could we get some clarification please?

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

I've done my best to fill in some of the holes in the comments here, but our hands were tied based on the fact that KU wanted to release the details of its TV deal in stages rather than all at once.

There were reasons for that, both legal/contractual and otherwise, but we could not ignore the Time Warner/Metro aspect of this deal and just wait for the final pieces to fall in place. That would be bad reporting.

So we're at KU's mercy here, but I can tell you that they're aware of the fan reaction and confusion and are rushing to release the rest of the details as soon as humanly possible.

always_correct 9 years, 5 months ago

Maybe IMG's marketing or KU Athletics international marketing/media relations people should reconsider their approach on these press releases. If you can't tell us all the details now, why release the story? All you've done is confuse people, tarnish the brand and make it look like we're being run by amateurs.

Regardless of whether this deal is good for KU or its fans, you've done a terrible job informing the public.

*This comment is not directed at Matt Tait.

**edit. Okay, maybe I was wrong. Perhaps what is going on here is that KU purposely released this news with vague information because they want KU fans across Kansas (and maybe the US) to get mad and call their television provider asking about it. This will increase the demand, which will then allow TWC/Metro to get television operators to buy the channel.

Matt Tait 9 years, 5 months ago

Regarding your edit, that's not what's happening here. It's my understanding that KU was being gracious by releasing this portion of the news first and on its own so that Time Warner and MetroSports got the love they deserve...

I understand the confusion and frustration, but I think it's a little over-the-top to say the brand has been tarnished by this. It's June. Games aren't being played or broadcast by anybody. Most likely by the end of the month (at the latest) the details of the full deal will all be out and settled and by the time these things actually matter, i.e. by the time the games/events are being broadcast, this will all be long forgotten.

Hang in there. And I'll see what I can do about giving you guys more info as soon as possible.

always_correct 9 years, 5 months ago

Thanks for the reply, Matt. Yes, using the word "tarnished" was a bit much - but I guess I just meant with the basic info provided, the article made it seem like KU was only able to secure an 'afterthought deal' (like we're some mid-major or something).

If TWC/MetroSports needed the love immediately, it raises the question as to why. Are they losing subscribers to Google and other companies? Why can't they get their love in 2 weeks?

Hopefully they go all out with this and use HD for all the programming, and increase the production quality of the shoulder programming.

Thanks for following up. KU/IMG/TWC should be paying you for clearing up their mess.

Robert Brown 9 years, 5 months ago

It seems strange to me that the value of the deal was not disclosed in the press release. It would be interesting to compare each Big 12 school's Tier 3 deals.

lgregh 9 years, 5 months ago

just heard on 810 no metro sports no watch.

Pitthawk34 9 years, 5 months ago


Miles Nease 9 years, 5 months ago

It will not matter in a couple of years, anyway. The B16 channel is available on every cable system.

stubert 9 years, 5 months ago

sheahon(brain dead)zenger state unprecedented access to k.u. athletics. I'm 78 years old, I've been watching k.u. since the 50's Now I will no longer be able to watch them.Mr. zenger you will go down in history as the xooxoxoxox a.d. of any school in Kansas has ever had. Missouri and k.state still have to be belly laughing. I

rschneider 9 years, 5 months ago

Huge swing and miss by all involved - KU and media. So many questions not addressed or asked, evidently. The fact that all that can be said is, "Give it more time" is awful. KU's created confusion for the sake of dragging this thing out in multiple press releases. And the media has gone along with it. That the concerns about who will get what and how weren't addressed is troubling. This is basically a rewritten press release that doesn't say much.

AaronHawk19 9 years, 5 months ago

Chill out people. This is a good deal for KU. TW is not just some local cable company. They forked out 3 to 4 billion for the Lakers deal. This will bring greater access to KU non-revenue sports. We are talking about the opening football game that is usually not on TV and the KU games that are normally on the "Jayhawk Network" i.e. the 4 lowest profile regular season games and 2 exhibitions. KU stated yesterday that the basketball games will be available anywhere in the country on ESPN Full Court so for any out of Kansas Jayhawks (like me) there will be NO CHANGE over what currently exists. As for those in Kansas, lets wait and see if the 2 exhibition and 4 regular season games are only on Metro in areas where Metro is not available. If so, those in KC without metro might have to go to a friends house or a bar to watch KU beat Towson by 40....

rschneider 9 years, 5 months ago

Hard to tell if this is actually a good deal when there's so little information released and when the best the LJW can do is tell people to get "excited" but also "give it more time." Too many unanswered questions - starting with how this was handled.

AaronHawk19 9 years, 5 months ago

Other information sources exist...KC Star, Radio interviews with KU athletics. Be well informed.

rschneider 9 years, 5 months ago

None that I've found addressed the questions. All mostly rewritten press releases. KU could have avoided all this confusion but getting everything tied down and then releasing. Why the confusion was created hasn't been addressed. Missed opportunity by media.

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

"If" the games aren't shown on all the cable/satellite/google outlets, then yes, this was a huge mistake. Would TWC be that worried about losing subscribers to Google? They didn't do this for Dish, DirecTV, or any other major carrier when they were becoming popular. Based on Matt's comments, I don't think this is the case, and we'll still be able to see our team play.

Martin Shupert 9 years, 5 months ago

Okay, so I have one question that KU or anyone could answer. If a KU fan lives in Lawrence, what is the best move, given the priority to watch every second of every game and every show that has something to do with KU basketball? What cable company should we be using? (or which one should we allow to use us?) That's it. Someone answer that one and I'm satisfied.

Big_Dipper 9 years, 5 months ago

You talk about loyalty after mentioning you think KU will move to the PAC 12. Interesting.. I don't think they will move conferences. Especially with their TV rights tied up for several more years. I'm happy with the Big 12. I really enjoy the teams we play against. We might have an easier time in some sports in other conferences, while at the same time have more of a challenge in other sports. I still like our conference. I can't see us being in the PAC 12. The road games would start late in primetime, and the Kansas market wouldn't be as high for the so-so fans and people that need to go to work the next day. Sure, people can record the games, but it just isn't the same. We'll stay in the Big 12.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.