Last week, Fox and ESPN held their first-ever Pac-12 “Draft”, picking games among the two networks that they wanted to air this season. This being the first year of a long-term agreement, ESPN chose 12 games that will air on its various networks.
Many of these games will be shown in the late Saturday or Thursday night window, either at 9 p.m. or 10:30 p.m. ET.
More games will be added later. We have the first Big Dozen of Pac-12 games that the ESPN Family of Networks will provide in the 2012 season. You’ll notice the annual late November Notre Dame at USC game is already slated for either ABC or ESPN
We have the schedule below. You can read it and plan your football viewing.
ESPN – entering the first year of a new 12-year agreement with the Pac-12 Conference – has selected 12 Pac-12 college football games for telecasts across ESPN, ABC, ESPN2 and ESPNU. Combined with previously announced games, 10 of the 12 Pac-12 institutions are now represented in the schedule to date. Additional games will be announced as the season progresses. Highlights:
- The early selections include multiple games involving USC and Oregon, the No. 1 and No. 4 teams in a preseason College Football Live preseason top 25 poll, respectively:
- No. 1 USC twice: at Utah (Thursday, Oct. 4, at 9 p.m. on ESPN) and against No. 24 Notre Dame (Saturday, Nov. 24, on ABC or ESPN).
- No. 4 Oregon three times: against Arkansas State (Saturday, Sept. 1, at 10:30 p.m. on ESPN), against Arizona (Saturday, Sept. 22, on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2) and at Arizona State (Thursday, Oct. 18, at 9 p.m. on ESPN).
- ESPN and ESPN2 will combine to televise six weeknight Pac-12 games:
- Four consecutive Thursday ESPN College Football Primetime telecasts, highlighted by three games involving a preseason ranked team and Arizona State making consecutive appearances.
- ESPN and ESPN2 will each air a Friday night telecast in November.
- The newly announced games include the debut of three head coaches on Saturday, Sept. 1:
- Arkansas State’s Gus Malzahn will open his coaching tenure with the Red Wolves, the defending Sun Belt Conference champions, at defending Pac-12 and Rose Bowl champion Oregon at 10:30 p.m. on ESPN. Malzahn was the offensive coordinator of the Auburn team that defeated Oregon in the 2011 Tostitos BCS National Championship.
- ESPNU will televise a showdown of new head coaches when Arizona and new head coach Rich Rodriguez hosts Toledo, now led by Matt Campbell, at 10:30 p.m.
- ABC or ESPN will televise Notre Dame at USC, one of sports’ greatest rivalries that started in 1926, on Saturday, Nov. 24. Other traditional rivalry games include the Holy War between BYU and Utah (Saturday, Sept. 15, at 10 p.m. on ESPN2) and the Territorial Cup matching Arizona State against Arizona (Friday, Nov. 23, at 10 p.m. on ESPN).
As part of the new 12-year agreement between ESPN and the Pac-12, ESPN will deliver more football games than the previous agreement, including more games in the late Saturday night window, plus the Pac-12 Football Championship Game every other year starting in 2013; the addition of an extensive schedule of men’s regular-season basketball games, as well as select Pac-12 Men’s Basketball Tournament matchups and the Pac-12 Men’s Basketball Tournament Championship every other year starting with the 2012-13 season; and for the first time rights to women’s college basketball and other sports content.
The 2012 Pac-12 schedule (additional selections to be announced):
Date Time (ET) Game Network Sat, Sep 1 10:30 p.m. Arkansas State at No. 4 Oregon ESPN Sat, Sep 1 10:30 p.m. Toledo at Arizona ESPNU Sat, Sep 8 10:30 p.m. Illinois at Arizona State ESPN Sat, Sep 15 10 p.m. BYU at Utah ESPN2 Sat, Sep 22 TBD Arizona at No. 4 Oregon ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 Thu, Sep 27 9 p.m. No. 15 Stanford at Washington ESPN Thu, Oct 4 9 p.m. No. 1 USC at Utah ESPN Thu, Oct 11 9 p.m. Arizona State at Colorado ESPN Thu, Oct 18 9 p.m. No. 4 Oregon at Arizona State ESPN Fri, Nov 2 9 p.m. Washington at California ESPN2 Fri, Nov 23 10 p.m. Arizona State at Arizona ESPN Sat, Nov 24 TBD No. 24 Notre Dame at No. 1 USC ABC or ESPN
That will be it.