Reports: ACC to Launch Digital Channel in August 2016, Traditional Network in 2019

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Recently, various media reports have hinted that an ACC Network is coming soon, and on Monday night, media around the nation started tweeting and writing articles announcing that the network will launch soon, and details of the network will be released soon.

The major points of the reports are:

  • The ACC will launch a digital-only (streaming) option next month, August 2016.
  • A traditional linear channel, carried on cable and satellite in the style of the SEC Network and Big Ten Network, will launch in 2019.
  • The ACC and ESPN have extended their rights deal through the 2035-36 academic year.
  • The ACC has likewise extended its Grant of Rights (GOR) through the 2035-36 academic year.
  • If Notre Dame joins a conference for football in the next 20 years, it is contractually obligated to join the ACC.

More Details on the ACC Network

Numerous indicators have pointed to an ACC Network announcement being imminent, and on Monday night, July 18th, Luke DeCock of the (Raleigh) News & Observer officially broke the news:

Within a short period of time, ESPN’s Brett McMurphy followed up with more details:

David Teel of the Daily Press also blogged more information:

Major questions still remain unanswered, such as how much the network deal will pay ACC schools, and why there is a three-year delay in the launch of the linear, traditional channel.

The creation of the ACC Network means that only one of the Power 5 conferences doesn’t have a dedicated network: the Big 12. The Big Ten Network (in partnership with Fox) and SEC Network (in partnership with ESPN) have been financially lucrative, but the PAC 12 Network (no established partner) has struggled to find distribution and traction, and thus far hasn’t created the financial windfall for its members as the Big Ten and SEC networks have.

ACC Commissioner John Swofford will meet with the ACC media Thursday morning at the ACC Football Kickoff in Charlotte and will hold a one-hour Commissioner’s Forum. Per David Teel, Swofford is expected to discuss as many details of the network as possible at that time. will be in attendance in Charlotte and will provide a report.

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13 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Why the 3 year delay? Lots of major projects can be brought to fruition in less time. I suspect they want to allow plenty of time for the stench to dissipate from UNCheat.

  2. And with ESPN running the schedules, we will continue to have Sat noon games which sucks for the fans, and no Sat night games, which are the best. We haven’t had one of those for years. I sure hope the money is worth it.

    1. It takes wins, especially in big games, to get a prime time slot. It requires ratings. Hopefully a more aggresive home schedule and Big Red’s high powered offense will get us there.

  3. I’m so glad the 3 year delay Swofford negotiated with ESPN will allow his son to maximize his personal profits from Raycom first.

    1. Time for him and a few others to retire from the ACC, regardless of how the network turns out. In fact, we will not even know how it turns out for a long time. Swofford has screwed up the management of media for a long time. Number 1- why did we sell all the content a bargain basement prices? Number 2- why has getting agreement with ESPN on a network taken so long?

    1. Per updated David Teel article:

      “ESPN and the ACC are delaying the launch until 2019 to coincide with the network’s parent company, Disney, renegotiating contracts with major cable providers.”

  4. I’d like details on the streaming acc network. For example: will it be available to all, to subscribers with certain tv providers (Comcast, dish, etc), paid espn subsciption. I hated when VT would play a game on ESPN 3, I have Comcast so I had access, but I could never remember my login information and that always resulted in dampening my pregame excitement not to mention their terrible streaming quality. I even called in and complained about it and they tried to tell me my connection must have been too slow. I had 250mb and got 320mb. Then tried to tell me my computer was the problem. At the time I7 980x with 3gb gtx 580s in tri SLI 24gb ddr3 at 1833mhz and 4 256gb crucial ssd in raid 10 for boot. Nope not that either. The guy was downright rude and to say the least, I have little confidence in anything ESPN. I’m scared. Beat the truth out of them please. Ok you can ask nice, but then beat ’em anyway.

    1. Interesting. i have zero issue w/ watchespn. i used to connect my computer to my television, but now use apple tv to watch. everything works great, never skips a beat and basically works just like when i had cable.

      only issue is that it is slightly delayed, maybe 5 seconds. So, staying off of social media is paramount if you don’t want to be tipped off.

  5. Not probable, but certainly possible the B12 could have a network up and running before ACC does. Rest assured, espn will make sure the new channel doesn’t go on line until 2019. No way they push it forward.

    And I don’t expect a conference to get rich off of OTT content, any time soon.

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