This coming in the last few days, Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic has obtained the rights to the Atlantic Coast Conference. This is a cable syndication contract that is part of ESPN’s rights to the conference. As a result, Comcast SportsNet will be able to air a weekly conference football game, 14 in all. It will also have the rights to air up to 59 basketball games, 31 of them focusing in men’s action. And in addition, Comcast SportsNet will have the rights to air ACC baseball, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey and other sports. So this is a big deal and gives Comcast SportsNet some 120 conference events as programming.
We have the press release for you.
LONG-TERM AGREEMENT ALSO FEATURES BASEBALL, SOCCER AND LACROSSE
Bethesda, Md. (Aug. 25, 2011) – Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, the region’s leading source for multiplatform sports coverage, has acquired long-term television rights to live Atlantic Coast Conference football, men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, soccer and lacrosse, as well as other conference events. Through the multi-sport agreement, Comcast SportsNet remains the region’s official sports network of the ACC and will televise up to 120 live conference events annually.
The comprehensive package begins this season and provides Comcast SportsNet with a weekly schedule of live ACC football for the first time since 2004 and significantly expands its lineup of other conference sporting events. The network, which obtained the rights as part of the new ACC Network sublicensed regional package, will deliver this programming exclusively to more than 4.7 million households throughout Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.
“Our longstanding relationship with the ACC, its member schools and their many fans throughout the region make our network an ideal partner for the conference and a great home for their exciting product,” said Comcast SportsNet Senior Vice President and General Manager Rebecca Schulte. “This partnership represents a considerable increase in our high-quality programming and confirms our position as the region’s leader in college sports coverage.”
Comcast SportsNet will be the regional rights-holder for 14 ACC football games this season, beginning with James Madison at North Carolina on Sept. 3 at 3:30 p.m. Other match-ups scheduled to air on the network include NC State at Wake Forest on Sept. 10 at 3:30 p.m. and a doubleheader on Sept. 17 featuring Kansas at Georgia Tech (12:30 p.m.) and Arkansas State at Virginia Tech (4 p.m.) The remainder of the football schedule will be announced throughout the season.
Also highlighting the new package of ACC programming is up to 59 basketball games, including up to 31 men’s games – featuring 16 conference match-ups – and 28 women’s basketball games. In addition, Comcast SportsNet now has the rights for up to 20 conference baseball games, including ACC baseball tournament games, and a variety of soccer, lacrosse, volleyball, softball and field hockey. The network will also be home to ‘ACC All Access,’ a weekly half-hour program.
Comcast SportsNet also has established partnerships with the three ACC programs in the region, the University of Maryland, University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. These school partnerships will complement the network’s robust conference programming with special team and coaches’ shows, encore game presentations and marketing and branding elements. The network also has partnerships with other colleges throughout the region, including the University of Richmond, Towson University, Old Dominion, James Madison University and Virginia Commonwealth University.
The new ACC package adds to Comcast SportsNet’s already substantial live-game coverage of college athletics. As the official sports network of the Colonial Athletic Association, the network produces and airs a full schedule of conference football and basketball games and serves as the region’s exclusive provider of syndicated football, basketball and baseball games from the nation’s top conferences, including the Pac-12, Big 12 and Conference USA.