July 11, 2011
Cullowhee, N.C. - Western Carolina's home football game on Hall of Fame Weekend (Nov. 5) versus the Wofford Terriers has been chosen as a part of the Southern Conference's 2011 football television package the league announced today. The SoCon, in conjunction with its marketing partner CSE, also announced that it has agreed to a three-year plan with public television systems in Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina to televise the conference's football package.
In addition to the public television broadcast of the WCU-Wofford game, the Catamounts are also scheduled to be televised in the season-opener against Georgia Tech through ESPN3.com, the sports network's online streaming outlet.
The new partnered distribution platform will reach nearly 11 million homes through 32 affiliates, making it the largest regional distribution option across both broadcast and cable
"We're genuinely excited by the partnership with Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina public stations," said SoCon Commissioner John Iamarino. "This is an important step for us. It increases our previous reach by two million households, while allowing us to control our rights and our content, and it enables us to use this partnership to promote and publicize not only SoCon football, but other educational activities taking place on our campuses."
This unique partnership provides each of the three state public television networks state-wide distribution of Southern Conference football games in 2011, 2012 and 2013, with coverage from Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB Media) also covering the Chattanooga, Tenn., market. The league is exploring additional distribution outlets in Alabama and Tennessee. The plan calls for an eight-game football package each fall.
"Working with the Southern Conference to broadcast these games is a real coup for viewers of public television and the thousands of alumni who live in Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina," says Teya Ryan, President and Executive Director of GPB Media. "There is nothing like football to bring communities together and with our focus on K-12 education and improving high school graduation rates, this partnership is a perfect fit. It's also very exciting to partner with our fellow public broadcasters as a team and reach out to communities across the region."
The new agreement signals a shift for the conference from previous television agreements. The league, along with CSE, will now produce each telecast and will also retain the rights. In addition, the league will have control over pregame, halftime and postgame content while both parties will have an equal share of the sponsor breaks. Additionally, the Conference, along with the statewide public television networks, will have the ability to simulcast the games on their website, so fans not in-state can cheer on their school.
"Our goal was to find a consistent broadcast schedule for the SoCon Game of the Week," said CSE's Senior Vice President Programming, Media Services, Ned Simon. "SoCon and public television's high standards bode well for not just the growth of their partnership, but for each organization's individual growth as well."
The 2011 broadcast package begins October 1 when last year's co-champions, Appalachian State and Wofford square off in Spartanburg, S.C. Each of the eight televised games will also be streamed live and archived through the conference web site, on the individual public television sites.
The conference office is also working with each of the three state systems to put together a similar distribution network to carry men's and women's regular season basketball games, as well as the Southern Conference Basketball Tournament from Asheville, N.C., in March 2012.
Season tickets for the home portion of the 2011 WCU football schedule at E.J. Whitmire Stadium / Bob Waters Field are now available for purchase through the Catamount athletic department ticket office. Season ticket Mini-plans that include three of the six home dates will be available for purchase on Monday, Aug. 1 with single-game tickets on-sale beginning on Monday, Aug. 15.
To order 2011 Catamount football season tickets, call the WCU athletic ticket office at (828) 227-2401 or toll free at (800) 34-GOWCU, or log onto www.CatamountSports.com.
2011 Southern Conference Football Telecast Schedule
Oct. 1 Appalachian State at Wofford - 3:00 pm
Oct. 8 Chattanooga at Georgia Southern - 3:00 pm
Oct. 15 Furman at Georgia Southern - 3:00 pm
Oct. 22 Chattanooga at Elon - 3:00 pm
Oct. 29 Georgia Southern at Appalachian State - 3:00 pm
Nov. 5 Wofford at Western Carolina - 3:00 pm
Nov. 12 Samford at The Citadel - 3:00 pm
Nov. 19 Appalachian State at Elon - 3:00 pm
*ALL TIMES EASTERN
SoCon Sports Network Television Affiliates
|Georgia Public Broadcasting||North Carolina (UNC-TV)||South Carolina (SECTV)|
|Atlanta - WGTV||Asheville - WUNF||Allendale - WEBA|
|Chatsworth/Dalton - WNGH||Canton/Waynesville - WUNW||Beaufort - WJWJ|
|Cochran/Macon - WMUM||Chapel Hill/Raleigh/Durham - WUNC||Charleston - WITV|
|Columbus - WJSP||Charlotte/Concord - WUNG||Columbia - WRLK|
|Dawson - WACS||Edenton - WUND||Conway/Myrtle Beach - WHMC|
|Pelham - WABW||Greenville - WUNK||Florence - WJPM|
|Savannah - WVAN||Jacksonville - WUNM||Greenville - WNTV|
|Waycross - WXGA||Linville - WUNE||Greenwood - WNEH|
|Wrens/Augusta - WCES||Lumberton - WUNU||Rock Hill - WNSC|
|Roanoake Rapids - WUNP||Spartanburg - WRET|
|Wilmington - WUNJ||Sumter - WRJA|
|Winston-Salem - WUNL|