ESPN’s humongous 2008-09 college hoops schedule(s)

Wow.  I just looked at the release, which was published a couple of days back.  You can see it for yourself right here:  Link

That’s just for men’s college basketball.  The women will also have a significant presence on ESPN and its family of networks, as evidenced by this separate release.

Back to men’s hoops.  Awful Announcing estimated that the ESPN networks would combine to air around 1100 games this season, which is incredible.  To the surprise of nobody, however, none of those 1100 games will involve The Citadel.  When you are the worst basketball program in the history of Division I, though, you have to accept such indignities.  (From what I can tell, El Cid will be on TV three times this season, against the CofC and South Carolina on SportSouth, and against Michigan State on the Big Ten Network.)

While The Citadel may have been shut out, other small schools and low-profile programs fare better.  Just to mention a couple of them, Davidson gets four games (and probably should have more).  South Carolina State gets three games on ESPNU, which is certainly going to be the MEAC’s favorite network.  In fact, a lot of those 1100 games are going to be on the U, which is great if you have that network.  If you don’t, though…

Starting with conference play around mid-January or so, Thursday night in particular is going to be a great night for college hoops fans, with seven-game slates on a regular basis.  A typical Thursday will have ACC/Big 10/SEC/Big East doubleheaders on both ESPN and ESPN2, along with two games on ESPNU and an additional 11 pm ET game on ESPN featuring a WCC or WAC game (i.e., Thursday night is Gonzaga night!).

The ABC/ESPN group will usually feature about 12 games each Saturday (although there will be 17 games televised on the various ESPN networks on February 21).  ESPN and its varied platforms will also televise most, if not all, of the games for 10 preseason tournaments, and then there’s the much-discussed wall-to-wall hoops all day on November 18.

What is really amazing is that there is still plenty of basketball to be televised by the likes of the Big Ten Network, Fox Sports Net, Comcast SportsNet, etc.  All in all, it’s incredible how much hoops coverage is out there.  ESPN just happens to lead the way.

2 Responses

  1. I once considered buying the ESPN hoops package, but with DirecTV you get so much coverage that it really isn’t worth it.

  2. I have DirecTV as well and I have no idea how I could possibly watch more college hoops (I have the Sports Pack, too). Maybe once in a blue moon there’s a game of interest that I can’t get, but to me it’s not worth buying Full Court just for a handful of games.

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