This came into the Fang’s Bites inbox last week, but due to my family commitments, I couldn’t post it until now. This is from ESPN regarding its 2012 college football schedule. This adds 68 games to an already extensive schedule. These include contests from the Big East, Big Ten, Mid-American, SEC, Sun Belt and WAC.
Some of the contests include Texas A&M’s first-ever game as a member of the Southeastern Conference. There will also be 8 Big Ten home games in the first three weeks of the 2012 season.
In addition, ESPN will air Penn State at Ohio marking the debut of new Nittany Lion coach Bill O’Brien, marking the first time that Joe Paterno will not be overseeing the PSU program dating back to 1966.
Here’s what ESPN is saying about its schedule.
ESPN continues to build its extensive 2012 college football schedule, adding 68 games across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3. The matchups involve home games from the SEC, Big Ten, BIG EAST, Mid-American, Sun Belt and Western Athletic conferences. The announcement also includes the MEAC/SWAC Challenge and six ESPNU Thursday night telecasts from the two prominent HBCU (Historically Black College/University) leagues.
In the first three weeks, ESPN will televise games from all 11 Football Bowl Subdivision conferences plus BYU, Notre Dame and Navy. Additional selections, including home games from the SEC, Pac-12 and Big 12, will be announced in the upcoming weeks.
Every game will also be available via WatchESPN, which delivers live access to ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3 on PCs, smartphones and tablets to fans who receive ESPN’s linear networks as part of their video subscription from Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks or Verizon FiOS TV.
- Five additional season-kickoff games on Thursday, Aug. 30: the opening night will be highlighted by an ESPN doubleheader beginning with South Carolina at Vanderbilt at 7 p.m. ET followed by the previously announced Washington State at BYU game at 10:15 p.m. ESPNU will televise Texas A&M’s first game as a member of the Southeastern Conference when the Aggies visit defending Western Athletic Conference champion Louisiana Tech at 7:30 p.m.
- Eight home Big Ten Conference games in the first three weeks of the season, highlighted by a 3:30 p.m. game on ABC and ESPN2 each Saturday: Southern Mississippi at Nebraska (Sept. 1), Air Force at Michigan (Sept. 8) and Navy at Penn State (Sept. 15).
- Including two previously announced games, ESPN networks will cover the debut of eight head coaches with their new team in the first weekend: Tim Beckman (Illinois), Terry Bowden (Akron), Paul Chryst (Pittsburgh), Ellis Johnson (Southern Miss), Bill O’Brien (Penn State) and Kevin Sumlin (Texas A&M); previously announced games include Larry Fedora (North Carolina against Elon Saturday, Sept. 1, at 12:30 p.m. on ESPN3) and Mike Leach (Washington State at BYU Thursday, Aug. 30, at 10:15 p.m. on ESPN).
- ESPN’s telecast of Penn State against Ohio (Saturday, Sept. 1, at noon) will mark the debut of Nittany Lions head coach Bill O’Brien, the school’s first new head coach in 46 years.
- Three defending conference champions in the opening weekend: Louisiana Tech (WAC), Northern Illinois (MAC) and Southern Mississippi (Conference USA).
- ESPNU will televise three games involving Big Ten teams on the first two Saturdays of the season, including a doubleheader from the state of Illinois on September 1: Western Michigan at Illinois at noon followed by Iowa vs. Northern Illinois from Chicago’s Soldier Field at 3:30 p.m. ESPNU will also televise Michigan State at Central Michigan on September 8 at 3:30 p.m.
- Multiple games involving teams ranked in a preseason College Football Live preseason top 25 poll.
ESPN will provide the most extensive multiplatform college football coverage with more than 450 regular-season and postseason games, concluding with the Discover BCS National Championship, across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3, ESPN Regional Television, ESPN Radio, ESPN 3D, ESPN Mobile, ESPN GamePlan and ESPN Goal Line. In addition to game action, ESPN will deliver news, analysis, features and highlights across College GameDay, College Football Live and multiple other television shows as well as ESPN.com, ESPN Radio and ESPN The Magazine.
Newly Announced ESPN 2012 College Football Telecasts (additional selections will be announced later):
Date Time (ET) Game Network Thu, Aug 30 7 p.m. South Carolina at Vanderbilt ESPN 7 p.m. Central Florida at Akron ESPN3* 7 p.m. Eastern Michigan at Ball State ESPN3* 7:30 p.m. Texas A&M vs. Louisiana Tech (from Independence Stadium – Shreveport, LA) ESPNU 7:30 p.m. Massachusetts at Connecticut ESPN3 & BIG EAST Local Package Fri, Aug 31 TBD Villanova at Temple ESPN3* Sat, Sep 1 Noon Ohio at Penn State ESPN Noon Northwestern at Syracuse ESPN2 Noon Western Michigan at Illinois ESPNU 3:30 p.m. Southern Mississippi at No. 17 Nebraska ABC & ESPN2** 3:30 p.m. Iowa vs. Northern Illinois (from Solider Field – Chicago) ESPNU 6 p.m. Youngstown State at Pittsburgh ESPN3* 7 p.m. Tennessee-Chattanooga at South Florida ESPN3* Sun, Sep 2 Noon MEAC/SWAC Challenge Presented by Disney: Bethune-Cookman vs. Alabama State (from Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium – Orlando) ESPN Sat, Sep 8 Noon Central Florida at No. 20 Ohio State ESPN2 Noon Maryland at Temple ESPNU Noon NC State at Connecticut ESPN3 & BIG EAST Network 3:30 p.m. Air Force at No. 10 Michigan ABC & ESPN2** 3:30 p.m. No. 12 Michigan State at Central Michigan ESPNU 3:30 p.m. Indiana at Massachusetts ESPN3* 3:30 p.m. Howard at Rutgers ESPN3 & BIG EAST Local Package 7 p.m. Memphis at Arkansas State ESPN3* 7 p.m. Louisiana-Lafayette at Troy ESPN3* TBD Texas Tech at Texas State TBD Thu, Sep 13 7:30 p.m. Mississippi Valley State at Southern ESPNU Sat, Sep 15 Noon California at No. 20 Ohio State ABC Noon Arkansas State at No. 17 Nebraska ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU Noon No. 19 Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU 3:30 p.m. Navy at Penn State ABC & ESPN2** 3:30 p.m. North Carolina at Louisville ABC & ESPN2** 7 p.m. Rice at Louisiana Tech ESPN3* 7 p.m. Delaware State at Cincinnati ESPN3* 7 p.m. Mississippi State at Troy ESPN3* 8 p.m. Colorado State at San Jose State ESPN3* Wed, Sep 19 7 p.m. Kent State at Buffalo ESPNU Thu, Sep 20 7:30 p.m. Arkansas Pine Bluff at Alabama State ESPNU Sat, Sep 22 Noon Massachusetts at Miami (OH) ESPN3 & MAC Game of the Week 2 p.m. Connecticut at Western Michigan ESPN3* 3:30 p.m. Gardner-Webb at Pittsburgh ESPN3* 4:30 pm South Florida at Ball State ESPN3 7 p.m. Louisville at Florida International ESPNU or ESPN3 7 p.m. Southern Mississippi at Western Kentucky ESPN3* 8 p.m. New Mexico at New Mexico State ESPN3* TBD Kansas at Northern Illinois ESPNU or ESPN3 Thu, Sep 27 7:30 p.m. Morgan State at North Carolina A&T ESPNU Sat, Sep 29 Noon Buffalo at Connecticut ESPN3 & BIG EAST Network Noon Ball State at Kent State ESPN3 & MAC Game of the Week 8 p.m. UNLV at Utah State ESPN3* TBD Nevada at Texas State TBD Sat, Oct 6 Noon Buffalo at Ohio ESPN3 & MAC Game of the Week 7 p.m. UNLV at Louisiana Tech ESPN3 & WAC Syndication Sat, Oct 13 4 p.m. Utah State at San Jose State ESPN3 & WAC Syndication Thu, Oct 18 7:30 p.m. Hampton at NC Central ESPNU Sat, Oct 20 Noon Northern Illinois at Akron ESPN3 & MAC Game of the Week 1 p.m. Army at Eastern Michigan ESPN3* 3:30 pm Pittsburgh at Buffalo ESPN3 7 p.m. Idaho at Louisiana Tech ESPN3 & WAC Syndication TBD Cincinnati at Toledo ESPNU or ESPN3 Thu, Oct 25 7:30 p.m. Delaware State at Morgan State ESPNU Sat, Oct 27 Noon Northern Illinois at Western Michigan ESPN3 & MAC Game of the Week 3:30 pm Kent State at Rutgers ESPN3 & BIG EAST Local Package Sat, Nov 3 4 p.m. Texas-San Antonio at Louisiana Tech ESPN3 & WAC Syndication TBD Western Michigan at Central Michigan ESPN3* Sat, Nov 10 3:30 p.m. Navy at Troy ESPN3* Sat, Nov 17 Noon Rutgers at Cincinnati ESPN3 & BIG EAST Network Noon Kent State at Bowling Green ESPN3 & MAC Game of the Week Thu, Nov 22 4 p.m. Tuskegee at Alabama State ESPNU Sat, Nov 24 3 p.m. Idaho at Utah State ESPN3 & WAC Syndication
* ESPN3 exclusive game
** Reverse mirror in which ESPN2 will regionalize two games on ABC to markets not receiving the telecasts
More college football stuff coming up.