ESPN Releases Broadcast Schedule For 2016 Frozen Four Tournament

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

The 2015 – 2016 college basketball season is all but wrapped up after Monday night’s men’s championship matchup between Villanova and UNC.  Tonight the women get their turn as UConn and Syracuse face off for their title.  College basketball may be getting all of the attention but it’s not the only sport that is wrapping up its season.  The annual “Frozen Four” tournament wraps up the 2015 – 2016 college hockey season this weekend.  And ESPN will have full coverage of the annual tournament.

Denver, North Dakota, Boston College, and Quinnipiac will vie for the NCAA college hockey title in this year’s Frozen Four.  The 2016 tournament will be carried across a number of ESPN’s platforms live from the site of the tournament, Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida.  The tournament will be held this Thursday, April 7th and Saturday, April 9th.  Top-seeded Quinnipiac will take on Boston College in the first of the semi-final matchups Thursday at 5pm ET.  No. 3 seed North Dakota will take on the Pioneers of Denver in Thursday’s second game.  That game is scheduled for an 8:30pm ET start time.  The winners of those games will face off in the Frozen Four Championship match Saturday night at 8pm ET.

John Buccigross and Barry Melrose will have the call for all three of this weekend’s games.  Quint Kessenich will be between the benches for all of the games’ latest news and interviews.  Victoria Arlen makes her debut with the team this year.  She is a former Paralympian Gold Medalist.  She joined ESPN in 2015 and regularly reports for espnW, X Games, and SportsCenter.  All three games in this weekend’s Frozen Four Tournament will be carried live on ESPN2 and online via ESPN3 Surround.  The streaming option allows fans to watch the game from ice level via a trio of robotic cameras that are placed on the glass around the rink.  The trophy presentation will be carried online exclusively on ESPN3.

Along with the exclusive ice-level coverage via ESPN3 Surround, the refs in each game will be wearing mics, letting audiences hear from them at various points throughout the final three games.  On the studio side, Steve Levy will anchor ESPN’s studio coverage of this weekend’s tournament.  From ESPN’s headquarters in Bristol, CT.  He will be joined by college hockey analysts Sean Ritchlin and Dave Starman for additional commentary.  Fans can also follow all of the scores, news, and more via Twitter at http://twitter.com/NCAAIceHockey and http://twitter.com/hashtag/frozenfour.  More information on this year’s Frozen Four tournament is available online now along with all of the latest college hockey news at:

 

Website: http://espn.go.com/college-sports

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESPNU

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Releases Preliminary Big Ten Football Schedule For SNF Broadcasts

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has released the current 2014 Big Ten Football schedule for its weekly Saturday Night Football schedule.

This season’s Big Ten Saturday Night Football schedule opens with a matchup between the Ohio State Buckeyes and Virginia Tech Hokies on Saturday, September 6th. The game is scheduled for an 8pm ET start time. The Buckeyes were ranked number seven overall in an ESPN pre-season poll. The current schedule has one of the biggest matches in college football on Saturday, November 8th with Ohio State facing off against The Michigan State Spartans. The Spartans defeated the Buckeyes last year 34-24 in the Big Ten Championship. That game is schedule for an 8pm ET start time.

Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will have the call for the matchup between the Hokies and Buckeyes on September 6th. The current schedule of games includes coverage across the ESPN family of networks each week. It is listed below.

2014 Big Ten Schedule on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 (as of July 10)

Date Time (ET) Game Network
Sat, Sep 6 8 p.m. Virginia Tech at No. 7 Ohio State ESPN
Sat, Sep 20 8 p.m. Miami (Fla.) at Nebraska ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Sat, Oct 4 8 p.m. Nebraska at No. 4 Michigan State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Sat, Oct 11 7 p.m. Penn State at No. 21 Michigan ESPN or ESPN2
Sat, Oct 25 8 p.m. No. 7 Ohio State at Penn State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Sat, Nov 1 8 p.m. Illinois at No. 7 Ohio State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Sat, Nov 8 8 p.m. No. 7 Ohio State at No. 4 Michigan State ABC

More additions to this schedule are expected. Fans can keep up with the latest updates on ESPN’s Big Ten Football coverage schedule online at http://www.facebook.com/CFBonESPN, http://twitter.com/espncfb, and http://espn.go.com/ncf/index. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Family of Networks Will Carry Entire NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship Tournament

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

 

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN and the ESPN family of networks will carry the entire NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship Presented by Capital One.

The NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship Presented by Capital One tips off this Saturday, March 22nd.  It all starts with a matchup between No. 15 Winthrop and No. 2 Duke in Durham, North Carolina.  Coverage of the game is scheduled for an 11am ET start time.  The game will be broadcast on television on ESPN2 and online on ESPN3 via WatchESPN.

The majority of the tournament’s first and second-round games will be televised on ESPN2.  There are two exceptions to that rule.  The exceptions in question are the Sunday 3pm ET and 5:30pm ET window.  The games broadcast on ESPN2 will be broadcast in twelve regionalized windows with home market protection.  ESPN3 and ESPN Full Court, ESPN’s pay-per-view package, will offer full coverage of the tournament as an addition to the tournament’s regional coverage.  The tournament’s final fifteen games will be carried on ESPN and ESPN2.  It all leads up to the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship game on Tuesday, April 8th at 8:30pm ET on ESPN.  The championship game will be broadcast live from Nashville, Tennessee.

Audiences can get even more coverage of the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship across ESPN’s family of networks and online, including espnW.com, SportsCenter, ESPNEWS, and ESPN International.  More information on coverage of the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship presented by Capital One is available online at http://www.facebook.com/ESPNCollegeBasketball, http://espn.go.com/womens-basketball, http://www.facebook.com/espnW, and http://espnW.com.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN To Debut New NFL Mini-Series April 22nd

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

It’s only March.  But as any sports fan knows, it’s always football season.  In keeping with that understanding, ESPN announced this week, that it will debut a new four-week series focused on the top prospects for the 2014 NFL Draft this Spring in anticipation of the upcoming NFL season.

ESPN Draft Academy will debut Tuesday, April 22nd at 10pm ET on ESPN.  The four-week series follows this year’s crop of NFL hopefuls as they prepare for the annual NFL Scouting Combine, their individual Pro Days, and the upcoming NFL Draft.  The mini-series will focus on Blake Bortles (Central Florida), Jadeveon Clowney (South Carolina), Marqise Lee (USC), Pierre Desir (Lindenwood (Mo.) University) and Bishop Sankey (University of Washington).  Each episode runs one hour and will follow Jon Grudens QB Camp.

Matthew Volk, ESPN Director of Programming and Acquisitions, explained the premise of the mini-series in speaking with the media.  “Draft Academy follows some of the most talented, talked-about prospects as they train in pursuit of a top spot in the 2014 NFL Draft,” he said.  “The show will give fans an intimate look at these players as they pursue their goals of making it to the NFL.”

More information on ESPN’s Draft Academy is available online at http://www.facebook.com/ESPN and http://espn.go.com.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN, DISH Sign New Multi-Year SEC Network Broadcast Deal

Courtesy:  ESPN/SEC Network/DISH

Courtesy: ESPN/SEC Network/DISH

A new deal between ESPN and DISH has given DISH carriage rights to the fledgling SEC network when the multiplatform network launches this Summer.

DISH will begin carrying the SEC Network beginning August 14th, 2014.  The announced deal is just one part of a much larger groundbreaking deal signed this week between DISH and The Walt Disney Company.  It makes DISH the first nationwide television provider for the SEC Network.  The multiplatform deal includes coverage of over one thousand live events in just its first year.  That number includes no fewer than forty-five exclusive SEC football games, over one hundred men’s basketball games, sixty women’s basketball games, seventy-five baseball games, fifty softball games, and even more events throughout the SEC’s twenty-one different sports.

As with the deal giving DISH broadcast rights for the Longhorn Network, this deal will see the SEC Network added to DISH America’s Top120+ and higher packages nationwide.  Those that add the SEC Network to their satellite package will also have access to the network’s digital platform.  That will allow audiences access to SEC Network content at home and on the go via computers and mobile web.

Terms of the deal partner ESPN and the SEC through 2034.  Dave Shull, DISH Executive VP and CCO, spoke on behalf of the network in an interview about the deal.  “Few fan bases rival the passion and loyalty of the SEC, and DISH is proud to be the first nationwide television provider of the SEC Network,” he said.  “We strive to give our customers and consumers what they want, and there’s no better place for the college sports fan than with DISH.”

Justin Connolly, ESPN Senior VP of College Networks, expanded on Shull’s comments explaining just how important the deal is to ESPN and DISH. “This agreement provides DISH customers nationwide with access to every SEC college football game this fall and an unparalleled fan experience of more SEC content than ever before,” he said.

SEC Commissioner Mike Slive also spoke with reporters after the groundbreaking deal was signed and sealed.  He expressed to reporters the importance of the deal not only for the SEC, but also for fans of SEC athletics.  “This is an important day for the SEC Network,” he said.  “We are pleased to welcome DISH to the SEC family. More than five months ahead of the network launch, it’s exciting to have a national distributor and our first satellite provider onboard. Now SEC fans from across the country have another way to show their conference pride and sign up to get the SEC Network.”

DISH customers can find out later this year where they can find the SEC network on their carrier online at http://www.dish.com.  More information on this deal and more from ESPN is available online at http://espn.go.com and http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN, DISH Reach New Deal For Longhorn Network Broadcast Rights

Longhorn Network - February 28, 2014

Courtesy: ESPN/DISH/Longhorn Network

Fans of the Texas Longhorns have another reason to be happy this morning.  That’s because a new deal between ESPN and Dish Network will allow DISH to carry the Longhorn Network to fans across the country.  It’s just one part of a much bigger deal announced this week between DISH and the Walt Disney company.  The new deal between ESPN and DISH more than doubles LHN’s national distribution.  According to terms of the deal, The Longhorn Network will be available to DISH customers on the America’s Top 120+ and higher packages beginning later this Summer.    Audiences will be able to get information on where LHN will be on their carrier later this year online at http://www.dish.com.

The expanded television coverage of the Longhorn Network is just one positive of the new deal between DISH and ESPN.  LHN fans that receive the network as part of their satellite service will also be able to get live coverage online at home and via mobile internet on their computers and iOS devices.

Justin Connolly, Senior VP of college networks, was positive in his comments about the announcement.  “This agreement with DISH presents a tremendous opportunity to bring Longhorn Network’s robust content offerings to Texas fans across the country,” he said.

ESPN’s deal with UT to broadcast the Longhorn Network, which originally debuted in 2011, lasts for twenty years.  Steve Patterson, University of Texas Athletics Director, shared his thoughts on the extended agreement and other topics in an interview.  “We are excited to have DISH join the growing list of LHN providers,” he said.  “UT fans nationwide will now have access to this award-winning network that does such a great job in covering our university’s sports and academics programs. As we have said from day one, this is a long-term commitment and we are very proud of our partnership with ESPN.”

Dave Shull, DISH Executive VP and CCO also shared his thoughts on the brand new deal.  “DISH is the best place for college sports fans to follow the teams they love,” he said.  “ESPN has a long tradition of delivering the best in sports, and we are proud to be the first nationwide television provider of the Longhorn Network.”

More information on this new deal between ESPN and DISH is available online at http://espn.go.com and http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Jon Gruden’s Quarterback Camp Returns This Spring

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

Jon Gruden’s “Quarterback Camp” will return this Spring.

Gruden’s series of SportsCenter specials will return this spring for its fifth season.  Gruden mentors a handful of college football’s top quarterbacks in the series, as they prepare to take the next step in their careers.  This year’s installment of Gruden’s “Quarterback Camp” will see nine of college football’s top quarterback prospects.  Those names include the likes of 2012 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel of Texas A&M, two-time BCS National Champion A.J. McCarron of Alabama, and Teddy Bridgewater of Louisville.  The complete list of this year’s “QB Camp” participants is noted below.

2014 Gruden’s QB Camp participants:

Quarterback

School

Blake Bortles

Central Florida

Tajh Boyd

Clemson

Teddy Bridgewater

Louisville

Derek Carr

Fresno

Jimmy Garoppolo

Eastern Illinois

Jordan Lynch

Northern Illinois

A.J. McCarron

Alabama

Johnny Manziel

Texas A&M

Aaron Murray

Georgia

 

Gruden prepares a specialized lesson plan of sorts for each of the participants in his “QB Camp.”  Through his specialized plan, he points out to each prospect, a balanced look at both their strengths and weaknesses, allowing them to see where they need to improve in order to be successful NFL talent.  Over the past four seasons of his “QB Camp” Gruden has mentored no fewer than twenty-nine quarterbacks from twenty-seven schools.  Fourteen of those QBs went on to be NFL regular season starters.  Among the names that Gruden has mentored through his series are: Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Cam Newton and current NFL Super Bowl champion Russell Wilson, of the Seattle Seahawks.

Gruden’s “QB Camp” moves this year to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Arena at Walt Disney World Resort outside Orlando.  It replaces Gruden’s Tampa office, where the “QB Camp” was previously held.  The new set will replicate his Tampa office, playfully dubbed the “Fired Football Coaches Association.”  The 220-acre facility also includes athletic fields, which will be used for quarterback workouts.

More information on Jon Gruden’s “Quarterback Camp” and all things NFL is available online now at http://espn.go.com/nfl and http://www.facebook.com/NFLonESPN.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.