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Updated: Texas Tech could cancel game on Longhorn Network

Texas Tech Spring Football AP

“Give me liberty (from the Longhorn Network), or give me 11 regular season games.” — Texas Tech, June 21, 2012.

Reportedly.

Yeah, the Big 12 looks all rosy on the surface, being on the verge of inking a huge payday and wisely aligned itself with the SEC for a new bowl game and all, but inner grumblings over Texas’ Longhorn Network apparently haven’t subsided.

RedRaiderSports reports an interesting story that Texas Tech is willing to cancel its Sept. 8 game against Division 1-A newcomer Texas State because it could be aired on the Longhorn Network.

Yes, the Red Raiders are apparently okay with playing 11 regular season games and absorbing any potential buyout for cancelling just as long as they don’t have to have a burnt orange logo next to their name.

“We are extremely disappointed,” a source told RRS. “Our hope is that the Texas State game will be played on a primary ESPN platform.”

Last year, the LHN approached Tech about airing its game against Texas, but the Red Raiders refused.

ESPN announced the game would be broadcast on one of its platforms earlier this month, but did not specify which. The WAC, of which Texas State will be a member this year, has the right to determine the broadcast partner for the game and has recognized the LHN as an official ESPN platform after the channel agreed to air all six UTSA home games this season.

So while Texas State would have no real issue with the broadcast, Texas Tech could have its hand forced. Understandably, they would have a problem with that.

Updated 6/22 @ 9:45 a.m.: Chip Brown of Orangebloods.com tweets that the LHN/ESPN will not pursue the Texas State-Texas Tech game. Whether the game will be broadcast through another channel remains to be seen, but the “development” isn’t much of a surprise given the instant brouhaha.

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17 Responses to “Updated: Texas Tech could cancel game on Longhorn Network”
  1. jimbo75025 says: Jun 22, 2012 9:16 AM

    If Texas is truly serious about staying in the B12 long term, they need to just let the LHN go. Too many problems and disputes with current (and former) conference members.

  2. fcmlefty1 says: Jun 22, 2012 9:36 AM

    If TT cancels this game, may I offer a solution: Texas Tech at Boise State. Boise can still schedule a 13th game. They have an open date on September 8th. Wont screw up TT home schedule, because they were going to be road team against Texas State. And since its a home game for a Mt West team, the whole ESPN thing is moot.

  3. florida727 says: Jun 22, 2012 9:41 AM

    #femlefty1. I like it. I was always told if you don’t like something or you disagree with something, don’t just complain about it, present a solution. And you have. Well done.

  4. fcmlefty1 says: Jun 22, 2012 10:38 AM

    So, after the update, where does that leave us? ESPN doing the game on either ESPN or ESPN 2? Relegating it just to ESPN3? I assume they won’t be dropping the game outright since they have agreed to carry all of Texas States home games in some way, shape or form, right?

  5. polegojim says: Jun 22, 2012 11:05 AM

    Well played TT – it’s my hope that many more teams will respond similarly to the LHN and it’s self serving, silo interests.

    Watch for it on ESPN1 now that it’s flagged.

  6. lottsmissingfinger says: Jun 22, 2012 11:48 AM

    polegojim,

    Texas Tech vs Texas State on ESPN(1)?

    You must have a connect on the TCU football team to get what you seem to be smoking.

    ESPN3 or tape delayed on ESPN2 at midnight.

  7. bertenheim says: Jun 22, 2012 11:54 AM

    ESPN actually thought TT would go for this?
    No network entity has ever been in such need of a serious competitor.

  8. floridacock says: Jun 22, 2012 1:50 PM

    This is ESPN’s fault.

  9. deadeye says: Jun 22, 2012 2:03 PM

    The BIG12 is a better destination for FSU and Clemson. But the conference still has issues to iron out as this article makes clear. If UT attempts to run the conference in directions that FSU, OU, OSU, and Clemson dislike, there could still be a chance of it distintegrating. The GOR went a long way in stabilizing the BIG12, but the LHN obviously is still a thorn in everyone else’s side.

  10. gorilladunk says: Jun 22, 2012 3:11 PM

    Based on the piddling number of cable/satellite companies that are carrying LHN, I can see ESPN dropping the whole thing in the next year or two if things don’t DRASTICALLY improve. This thing is bleeding money for ESPN (rightfully so) and I can’t see them throwing all this dough away for a platform that is seen by a nationwide audience that equals the population of Abilene, TX.

  11. knoxville622 says: Jun 22, 2012 3:31 PM

    Good work by Texas Tech. The LHN is an affront to the game–everyone in Texas (except the myopic Longhorn fans) and in college athletics should fight this. Call your cable operators and demand that it be excluded from your package. Boycott sponsors and games. It already is hemorrhaging money and eventually Texas’ own fans will see how marginalizing it is that they will turn on their despicable, narcissistic AD who concocted this self-aggrandizing scheme.

  12. lottsmissingfinger says: Jun 22, 2012 3:45 PM

    knoxville622,

    I’m no fan of the LHN but please. There is not a single university in the country that would turn down $300M over 20 years for, effectively, their Tier 3 rights if they were available to be sold.

    $15M a year for 2 football games, 8-10 mens basketball games, baseball and Olympic sports? C’mon, man.

    Besides, Texas A&M was approached to partner in a joint UT/A&M channel (pre-LHN) and they turned it down – because they thought the total revenue would be $5-6M/yr and their half would only be $2-3M a year.

    When push comes to shove, $$$ always wins in college athletics.

  13. knoxville622 says: Jun 22, 2012 3:56 PM

    I’ll help: USC, Oregon, Florida, LSU, Ohio State, Michigan… All those schools have Tier 3 rights as valuable as those of Texas. But those schools all bundle their rights within a larger conference deal. DeLoss can’t play with others so he went and did his own deal and expected the pygmies in his league (A&M, Oklahoma, etc.) to let him. If Texas insists on its own deal, then it should be independent. Even DeLoss knows he can’t cut it as an independent.

    FYI: A&M did NOT get an equal-partner offer from IMG and ESPN. They were offered a lesser cut. DeLoss would never view A&M as an equal partner. He has said on the record that Texas A&M will do whatever he wants.

  14. hornsforever says: Jun 22, 2012 5:03 PM

    I have never understood the hate toward the LHN,
    it isn’t like Texas is stopping any other school from
    getting their own channel.

    If Bama, Ohio State, USC, OU, or any school wants to have their own channel…go for it. No one is stopping you

    I may even watch a little if there is nothing else on.

    Finally, if you don’t like the LHN don’t watch it…seems simple enough.

  15. jimbo75025 says: Jun 23, 2012 1:49 AM

    hornsforever says:Jun 22, 2012 5:03 PM

    If Bama, Ohio State, USC, OU, or any school wants to have their own channel…go for it. No one is stopping you
    ——————
    Great, just what we need-more cable channels that nobody will watch (outside of the 1-2 football games a year) which will give the cable companies reason to jack up prices even more. To be honest with you, I have never even seen the LHN-even when I lived in Texas the cable company did not carry it. Face it, in the end the demand is just not what ESPN/Texas thought it would be. As someone suggested, the whole thing will die soon enough based on this lack of demand and Texas will have nearly destroyed the conference over nothing.

  16. bertenheim says: Jun 23, 2012 12:51 PM

    Call your cable/satellite provider and demand CBS Sports or NBC Sports and watch them as an alternative to ESPN. Things have to start somewhere.

  17. jab4710 says: Jul 3, 2012 1:07 AM

    I am for any school televising their own talk shows, press conferences, coaches’ interviews, behind the scenes clips, scrimmages, practices, historical games, live games in which they perform, lectures, performing arts, tail gates, etc. If a network is to be named for a single school, then these are the items which should be televised. This, I hope was the intial scope.

    The scope has changed. No denying it. The attempt to broadcast high school games and produce high school highlight shows indicates this to be true. Broadcasting UTSA games broadens that initial scope even more. Then there is the attempt to broadcast Texas State games when other conference members, other than themselves, are participating.

    The title “LHN”, no longer fits the product. The product has been expanded far beyond the 40 acres. The choice to increase programing diversity is forcing the “LHN” to be seen more as an ESPN4. This may be to attract more cable providers. Perhaps it is to fill their 24/7 broadcast. Regardless, it is a different animal than what was sold to the public originally.

    Any school has the right to market and promote their brand. Each school has the right to protect their trademark. This it Texas’ claim. The resistance is simply other schools attempting to do the same thing, protect their interests. Nebraska, Colorado, Missouri, and A&M have done more than push back. They pushed away. Even Oklahoma and now Tech have weighed in unfavorably with major components of this network and the seemingly unbridled manner in which this juggernaut is being maneuvered. At least 6 of the original 11 Big 12 schools (excluding Texas) have voiced opposition in one fashion or another. Yet, far more schools in the PAC 12, Big East, Big 10, SEC, etc., possess the same reservations.

    Some speculate that ESPN will “pull the plug” before too long due to lack of viewers, lack of programming and generally a daily redefined mission statement. It is my opinion that Texas would gain lost respect by disconnecting first. Don’t wait for ESPN to do it. Take credit for the dismantling of it. Texas is too good of a school with too great of a institutional history to be linked to this chaos. The amount of goodwill gained would only add to the success they already possess when it comes to their academics and athletic success.

    “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should”.

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