Aug. 26, 2002
CULLOWHEE, N.C. - Western Carolina University, a member of Official College Sports Network (OCSN), and RealNetworks®, Inc (Nasdaq: RNWK), the global leader in Internet media delivery, have partnered just in time for the 2002 college football season. Western Carolina, along with more than 45 top colleges and universities, will bring exciting, multi-media content including live audio broadcasts of the best in college football, basketball, baseball and other sports to college sports fans across the Internet via a new subscription-only service called College Sports Pass.
This exciting college package will kick off the fall sports season by providing live audio coverage of brand-name football games to fans everywhere via the Internet. College Sports Pass will launch with defending national champion and pre-season No. 1 Miami (FL), nationally ranked Washington, Michigan State, Illinois, Arizona and more than 40 others.
Catamount fans will also be treated to audio and/or video from press conferences, weekly coach's shows, highlight shows, live statistics breakdowns, league standings and other relevant programming as individually offered by school. For just $6.95 month subscribers will be treated to the highest bandwidth live broadcast yet available.
"As we discussed our options with OCSN, this was the model that best met our needs and the needs of our fans," said WCU Senior Associate Athletic Director Hunter Yurachek. "Obviously we would have preferred an option in which there was not a cost for our fans, but that is no longer available."
Each Catamount football and men's basketball game will be broadcast through this service, along with a limited schedule of women's basketball and baseball games. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Department of Athletics.
To sign up for the subscription, Western Carolina fans can go directly to the Catamounts' official athletic site (www.catamountsports.com), www.realone.com, or directly to their RealOne Player. A full list of participating colleges may be found at: www.collegesports.com.
"With the addition of OCSN partners such as Western Carolina University, RealOne is solidifying its position as the preeminent sports destination online," stated Scott Ehrlich, Vice President, Media Acquisition and Distribution, RealNetworks, Inc. "By harnessing the best in both college and professional sports, we're able to provide Catamount fans with the ultimate in sports programming from their own school and national sources - only available on RealOne."
The action doesn't end with the football season, either. Member schools will provide subscribers with any sport that is covered by their media networks-whether it's basketball, baseball or any other sport broadcast via OCSN.
"Through College Sports Pass, Real and OCSN will be bringing the best-of-class multi-media content available on the Internet today to the most avid college sports fans," stated Jeff Cravens, OCSN President. "We're excited to not only introduce this program, but to work with RealNetworks and our universities to develop premium, exclusive content targeted at the most loyal fan base in sports."