It's still a few months until basketball season, but the first CSTV telecast of NCAA, Division II sports of the season is coming this week as Michigan Tech visits Grand Valley State. Game time is 7 p.m. EDT Thursday, September 21.
The telecast is the first covered by a three-year regular-season television and broadband agreement between the NCAA and CSTV that was announced in July. The agreement showcases select NCAA, Division II football and men's and women's basketball games live in 2006-07.
"The partnership with CSTV is great news for the NCAA Division II membership as we now have a media partner who will be dedicated to telling the Division II story and highlighting our student-athlete accomplishments for the next three years," said Charles Ambrose, chair of the NCAA Division II Presidents Council and president at Pfeiffer University.
"This achievement is something that Division II chancellors and presidents said was important for the future success of the Division. We're pleased that we have secured this national media platform and will work with CSTV, a multi-media leader in college sports, to assure success for everyone involved," Ambrose said.
The regular-season partnership is the first of its kind for Division II. The CSTV agreement, which runs through 2009, provides an amplified platform to highlight Division II contests and student-athlete accomplishments, while also promoting the intercollegiate athletics philosophy for Division II member institutions. There are more than 74,800 student-athletes competing at 290 NCAA Division II colleges and universities nationwide.
"CSTV's goal is to connect all college sports fans to their favorite teams and sports at every level," said Brian Bedol, President and CEO, CSTV. "In this unprecedented partnership with the NCAA, we will maximize our industry-leading multi-media platforms to showcase the exceptional student-athletes competing in Division II. This partnership is another example of how the relationship between CSTV, CBS Sports and the NCAA, will continue to redefine the fan experience by delivering the most comprehensive game coverage and groundbreaking digital content."
Details of the partnership include CSTV providing airtime for NCAA production of three Thursday night Division II football games and six Division II basketball games (three men, three women). The increased exposure has the potential to reach millions of homes through CSTV outlets and NCAA syndication agreements.
The three football games scheduled for broadcast this season are: Michigan Tech University at Grand Valley State University on September 21 at 7 p.m. ET; Abilene-Christian University at West Texas A&M University on October 19 at 8 p.m. ET; and Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania at Indiana University of Pennsylvania on November 2 at 7 p.m. EDT. Coverage of the men's and women's basketball games will begin in January 2007. The basketball schedule will cover an eight-week period and will be announced at a later date.
The NCAA also plans to produce and deliver broadband streaming video of 40 Division II football games (four per week) during the 2006 season and 32 men's and women's basketball games in 2007. The broadband package will be advertising supported and no subscription fees will be charged to users. The games will be available through NCAAsports.com and CSTV.com on a dedicated web page for Division II. The games that will be provided via broadband will be announced in coming weeks.
A Division II media advisory group provided assistance in the development of the agreement and will determine which contests will be broadcast on CSTV. The advisory group members are Tom Bryant, president, Pittsburg State University; Leon Kerry, commissioner, Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association; Jessica Kozloff, president, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania; Jane Meier, athletics director, Northern Kentucky University; Robert Nielson, athletics director, University of Minnesota, Duluth; Joel Smith, commissioner, Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference; and Ronald Zaccari, president, Valdosta State University.