We have this release which discusses ESPN’s extensive and comprehensive 2011-12 college football schedule. I still can’t believe there will be over 400 games across ESPN’s platforms, but that’s the day and age we live in. Let’s take a look at the highlights of ESPN’s schedule. If you want a complete look at ESPN’s extensive and comprehensive college football schedule, go here.
More Than 400 Games; All Five BCS Games on ESPN; First Year of New Agreements with ACC & BYU
ESPN’s 2011 college football schedule will include more than 400 regular and postseason games across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3.com, ESPN 3D, ESPN Regional Television, ESPN Radio, ESPN Mobile TV and ESPN GamePlan.
In addition to game telecasts, the second year of the ESPN Goal Line network will offer unlimited live cut-ins and highlights from numerous top college football games every Saturday beginning at noon. Goal Line is currently available to Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks and Verizon FiOS TV customers.
Viewers can also watch live ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3.com and ESPN Goal Line game action on smart phones or tablets through the WatchESPN app. The service – available to customers of Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks or Verizon FiOS TV – gives fans the ability to watch ESPN’s live networks, no matter where they are.
Schedule highlights include (the majority of game selections will generally be made 12 or six days before the date as the season progresses):
- BCS & bowls: ESPN outlets will present all five of the BCS games, highlighted by the BCS National Championship, as part of its schedule of 33 bowl games.
- ACC: The first year of a 12-year agreement with the Atlantic Coast Conference providing ESPN extensive rights to games for Saturday, Thursday and Labor Day telecasts across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3.com.
- BYU: The first year of an eight-year agreement for exclusive rights to BYU home football games across multiple ESPN platforms.
- Prime-time action: ESPN will offer Saturday night action across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU and weekly ESPN and ESPNU Thursday prime-time telecasts.
- Reverse mirror: As many as 12 Saturday afternoon windows will offer “reverse mirror” coverage in which two games from ABC’s split national telecasts are televised regionally on ESPN or ESPN2 and ESPN3.com, providing fans with coverage of both games on one of the outlets.
- ESPN 3D: The first 3D network to launch in the industry will offer a schedule of regular-season games (schedule to be determined).
- Live games online: ESPN3.com will stream more than 400 games, a record for the broadband network, including at least 50 exclusive contests.
- More platforms: Additional ESPN platforms offering games include a weekly broadcast on ESPN Radio; ESPN Mobile TV simulcasts; ESPN Regional Television syndication; and an extensive schedule on ESPN GamePlan, ESPN’s outermarket pay-per-view service.
The season will begin with the fourth annual Kickoff Week Sept. 1-5, featuring extensive studio programming and 32 games in five days, concluding with Miami at Maryland in a Labor Day telecast Monday, Sept. 5, at 8 p.m. on ESPN and ESPN3.com.
Regular-season coverage will conclude Saturday, Dec. 3, highlighted by the ACC Championship Game on ESPN and ESPN3.com at 8 p.m. and two Big 12 intrastate showdowns: Oklahoma at Oklahoma State and Texas at Baylor, both on ABC at either 3:30 p.m. or 8 p.m.
For the fifth consecutive year, ESPN will be the only network to offer coverage of home games from all six of the BCS automatic qualifying conferences (ACC, BIG EAST, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC) in addition to the MAC, Sun Belt and WAC. ESPN will also televise road games featuring Notre Dame, Navy, Army and teams from the Mountain West Conference and Conference USA.
The networks will offer an extensive schedule of games each Saturday, as well as matchups every Thursday and Friday and select Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Highlights include:
- ESPN on ABC: ESPN on ABC’s Saturday Night Football, broadcast television’s only weekly college football prime-time series, will showcase showdowns between top programs every Saturday (except Sept. 10 and Oct. 15) at 8 p.m. beginning Sept. 3 with Oregon vs. LSU in the Cowboys Classic. ABC will continue to broadcast top matchups every Saturday at 3:30 p.m. and select Saturdays at noon involving teams from the ACC, BIG EAST, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC.
- Saturdays on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU: On most Saturdays, ESPN or ESPN2 will offer a prime-time doubleheader as well as a noon telecast across both networks. On nights without a doubleheader ESPN will generally televise a 7:45 p.m. game and ESPN2 a 7 p.m. telecast. ESPN or ESPN2 will continue to offer a “reverse mirror” of ABC’s 3:30 p.m. split national broadcast, while ESPNU will offer four telecasts generally at noon, 3:30 p.m., 7 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
- Thursdays: ESPN and ESPNU will both televise a Thursday night game every week, generally at 8 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., respectively. For the fourth consecutive year, ESPN’s popular weekly Thursday night series will feature a team from one of the six BCS automatic qualifying conferences in every game. The schedule will be highlighted by UNLV at Wisconsin (Sept. 1), LSU at Mississippi State (Sept. 15), California at Oregon (Oct. 6), Virginia at Miami (Oct. 27), Florida State at Boston College (Nov. 3) and Texas at Texas A&M (Nov. 24).
- Weekdays: In addition to a weekly Friday prime-time series on ESPN or ESPN2, the networks will offer games on select Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout the season.
College Football on Additional ESPN Platforms
ESPN will provide extensive, multiplatform coverage in addition to regular time slots on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU.
- ESPN3.com: In addition to at least 50 exclusive games, ESPN3.com will offer live simulcasts and on-demand re-airs of every ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC split national telecast, and every GamePlan game.
- ESPN Radio: ESPN Radio, ESPN’s national radio network – with more than 700 non-duplicative stations – will broadcast a weekly Saturday game, two Thursday night matchups and 23 postseason bowl games, highlighted by all five BCS matchups.
- ESPN Mobile TV: For the fifth year, ESPN Mobile TV, ESPN’s first 24/7 channel for wireless platforms available on multiple carriers via MobiTV, will simulcast approximately four games a week from ESPN and ESPN2.
- ESPN Regional Television: The nation’s largest syndicator of collegiate sports programming will produce games from the SEC, BIG EAST, MAC and WAC.
- ESPN GamePlan: ESPN’s outermarket pay-per-view service will offer season-long action, including up to 12 games each week.
Examples of Top Matchups (from games already selected)
Date Time (ET) Game Network Sat, Sep 3 8 p.m. Cowboys Classic: Oregon vs. LSU (from Arlington) ABC / ESPN Radio 8 p.m. Kickoff Game: Boise State vs. Georgia (from Atlanta) ESPN / ESPN3.com Mon, Sep 5 8 p.m. Miami at Maryland ESPN / ESPN3.com / ESPN Radio Fri, Sep 9 10:30 p.m. Missouri at Arizona State ESPN / ESPN3.com Sat, Sep 10 3:30 p.m. Alabama at Penn State ABC 8 p.m. Notre Dame at Michigan ESPN / ESPN3.com Thu, Sep 15 8 p.m. LSU at Mississippi State ESPN / ESPN3.com Sat, Sep 17 Noon Auburn at Clemson ABC 7:30 or 8 p.m. Oklahoma at Florida State ESPN or ABC *** 7:30 or 8 p.m. Ohio State at Miami ESPN or ABC *** 9:15 p.m. Utah at BYU ESPN2 / ESPN3.com Sat, Sep 24 TBA LSU at West Virginia ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 *** 10:15 p.m. USC at Arizona State ESPN or ESPN2 / ESPN3.com Sat, Oct 1 8 p.m. Nebraska at Wisconsin ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 *** Thu, Oct 6 9 p.m. California at Oregon ESPN / ESPN3.com Sat, Oct 8 Noon Oklahoma vs. Texas (from Dallas) ABC / ESPN Radio Sat, Oct 22 8 p.m. Wisconsin at Michigan State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 *** Wed, Oct 26 8 p.m. Connecticut at Pittsburgh ESPN / ESPN3.com Fri, Oct 28 8 p.m. BYU vs. TCU (from Arlington) ESPN / ESPN3.com Sat, Oct 29 8 p.m. Wisconsin at Ohio State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 *** 8 p.m. Stanford at USC ABC Thu, Nov 3 8 p.m. Florida State at Boston College ESPN / ESPN3.com Thu, Nov 17 8 p.m. North Carolina at Virginia Tech ESPN / ESPN3.com / ESPN Radio Sat, Nov 19 8 p.m. USC at Oregon ABC Thu, Nov 24 8 p.m. Texas at Texas A&M ESPN / ESPN3.com Fri, Nov 25 Noon Iowa at Nebraska ABC 3:30 p.m. Boston College at Miami ABC TBD Pittsburgh at West Virginia ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 *** Sat, Nov 26 8 p.m. Notre Dame at Stanford ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 *** Sat, Dec 3 3:30 p.m. or 8 p.m. Oklahoma at Oklahoma State ABC 8 p.m. ACC Football Championship Game (from Charlotte) ESPN / ESPN3.com / ESPN Radio
*** Game on ESPN or ESPN2 will be simulcast on ESPN3.com
Every Corner Covered through ESPN and ABC Outlets
In addition to game coverage, ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3.com, ESPN Regional Television, ESPN Radio and ESPN Mobile TV will provide news and features throughout the season, including on popular studio programs College GameDay, the daily College Football Live, College Football Final, College Football Countdown and BCS Countdown. ESPN’s multiple media outlets – ESPN.com, ESPNEWS and ESPN The Magazine – will also offer extensive season-long coverage.
And that does it.