Time Warner, Bright House agree to carry SEC Network
With just 21 days before the scheduled launch of the new SEC Network, Tampa and St. Petersburg area SEC fans can breathe a sigh of relief.
ESPN announced Thursday afternoon that it has come to an agreement with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks to carry the SEC Network.
The network will be available to all Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks markets for the start of the first SEC Network football game of the 2014-15 season: Texas A&M vs. South Carolina, on Aug. 28 at 6 p.m.
With the addition of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, the SEC Network will be available to approximately 60 million households nationwide.
At last week's SEC Media Days, ESPN senior vice president for college networks Justin Connolly said negotiations between Bright House and Time Warner - two of the largest cable companies in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area - were ongoing.
Connolly said he felt confident the two sides would come to an agreement, but at the time he wasn't willing to say the agreement would come before the network's lauch.
SEC fans whose cable companies had not agreed the carry the SEC Network have been on an all-out campaign to put pressure on those companies, particularly as football season gets closer to kicking off.
"We know we have customers who want the SEC-ESPN Network, and are pleased to bring it to them," said Andrew Rosenberg, senior vice president of content acquisition for Time Warner Cable. "This deal will help ensure that fans and alumni of SEC universities won't miss any important games."
The SEC Network will air more than 1,000 live events in its first year, including at least 45 exclusive SEC football games, more than 100 men’s basketball games, 60 women’s basketball games, 75 baseball games, 50 softball games and events across all of the SEC’s 21 sports.