Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks have scored a deal with ESPN to carry the SEC Network just ahead of the network’s launch Aug. 14.
With the latest deal in hand—Time Warner Cable has typically forged carriage agreements for both itself and Bright House Networks— the SEC Network will be available to approximately 60 million homes nationwide.
Cox Communications, Comcast, Dish Network, Google Fiber and AT&T U-verse have signed agreements with ESPN for the SEC Network. Still missing from the lineup are Charter Communications, Verizon and Dish Network, although a deal is rumored to be imminent for the latter.
“We know we have customers who want the SEC 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.”
Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks are the nation’s second and sixth-largest cable operators, respectively, in the nation, and both serve subscribers in the college football hotbeds of Texas and Florida.
“By delivering the SEC Network across Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks’ nationwide footprint, including key markets within SEC territory, we are meeting the demands of fans while also adding value to customers’ video subscriptions in advance of the network’s launch next month,” said Sean Breen, Disney and ESPN Media Networks senior vice president, affiliate sales.
According to a story by Sports Illustrated, cable operators are paying $1.40 per moth per subscriber in the 11 states that comprise the SEC Conference, and $0.25 per month in all other states.
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. The network will be an all-access pass to nationally competitive events, news and information, expert analysis, classic games and in-depth features on the most storied conference in college athletics.
“It is great to have Time Warner Cable as a distribution partner for the SEC Network,” said Mike Slive, Commissioner of the Southeastern Conference. “Time Warner Cable customers, particularly those in South Carolina and Texas, will have the opportunity to enjoy our football season opener exclusively on the SEC Network when Texas A&M visits South Carolina on August 28.”
Last year The Southeastern Conference and ESPN announced a 20-year agreement to operate the SEC Network.