Athletics News

C-USA Announces Multimedia Rights Partnerships

March 14, 2018


IRVING – A multi-year agreement makes CBS Sports the primary rightsholder for Conference USA football and men's basketball, televising the conference's best games, including the championship game in each sport on CBS Sports Network, C-USA Commissioner Judy MacLeod announced Wednesday.

MacLeod also announced that Stadium has expanded on last year's partnership and will receive a strong selection of C-USA football and men's basketball games.

"While exploring our options for future exposure, continuing our tremendous relationship with CBS Sports was a priority given our history," MacLeod said. "We recognized this was an ideal opportunity to build on our existing partnerships with CBS and Stadium to stay on the forefront of broadcasting through both digital distribution and traditional means. We will continue pioneering fresh and innovative ways to deliver our diverse audience a multitude of viewing options on emerging platforms."

"We are excited about the new C-USA multimedia agreements," Vice President and Director of Athletics Wren Baker said. "The result of these agreements provides significantly more revenue and broader distribution through expansion of platforms which have proven to be popular with C-USA fans. The agreements accomplish this without adding production costs to institution budgets. We look forward to working with our colleagues at C-USA and our partners at CBS, Facebook and Stadium to advance the C-USA brand."

Beginning with the 2018-19 season, CBS Sports Network will broadcast nine football games plus the C-USA Football Championship and eight men's basketball games per year, as well as the C-USA men's basketball championships semifinals and men's and women's basketball championship games.

CBS Sports also has reached an innovative deal with Facebook to sublicense and produce select C-USA football and basketball games broadcast exclusively on Facebook. The agreement allows for three football games and six basketball games per year to air on Facebook. The games will be a CBS Sports production, with CBS Sports announcers, graphics and branding.

"We are excited to extend our relationship with Conference USA for another five years and welcome Facebook as our new partner," said Dan Weinberg, Executive Vice President, Programming, CBS Sports. "This unique deal allows CBS Sports Network to become the primary home of Conference USA, televising the conference's top games, including the championship games for both sports. And in doing so, we are bringing on a new partner in Facebook, sublicensing select games and extending the CBS Sports brand to a new platform."

Building on last year's successes, Stadium will broadcast 15 football games and 17 men's basketball games for the 2018-19 season. The deal includes the men's quarterfinal rounds in the league's annual basketball championship. The multi-platform sports network will broadcast seven of the 15 football games and 10 of the 21 men's basketball games exclusively on Facebook. It will also continue to produce C-USA events for all of its digital and broadcast distribution partners including WatchStadium.com, the Stadium apps, and over-the-air broadcast and cable retransmission, in select markets. A full list of ways to watch Stadium can be found here: https://watchstadium.com/where-to-watch.

"We are thrilled to deepen and extend our relationship with Conference USA, its great member institutions and fan bases, and with our partners at Facebook," said Stadium CEO Jason Coyle. "We are excited to work with the Conference to ensure that its games are produced and distributed at the cutting edge of sports media."

Stadium launched its 24/7, all-platform sports network in August 2017, and began its groundbreaking live streaming partnership with Facebook in 2017-18. The first Stadium game on Facebook Watch took place on September 2, 2017, when Miami played at Marshall. Stadium will continue to deliver uniquely coordinated production assets and social elements for its Facebook Watch broadcasts, making the viewing experience as interactive and personal as possible.

The games produced by CBS Sports and Stadium for Facebook will be available to fans in the U.S. on Facebook Watch.

"No matter if it's at a tailgate or on Facebook, college sports bring people together," said Rob Shaw, Facebook Sports Media and League Partnerships lead. "So we're thrilled to partner with CBS Sports and Stadium to distribute exclusive, live Conference USA games to a global audience on our platform. We look forward to collaborating with these great broadcast partners to deliver interactive and social productions on Facebook Watch. This will enable fans to experience the excitement of C-USA football and basketball in unique and engaging ways next season."

The full schedule of games will be announced at a later date.

CBS Sports Network is available through all major cable, satellite and telco distributors as well as via OTT streaming service providers YouTube TV, fuboTV, PlayStation Vue, DirecTV and Hulu. Additionally, a live CBS Sports Network stream is available through CBSSports.com and the CBS Sports App by authenticating with select providers. For more information, including a full programming schedule, go to cbssportsnetwork.com.

Stadium is the original cord cutter's 24/7 sports network; a multi-platform network featuring exclusive live and on-demand games and events, highlights, classic games, original programming and daily live studio programming. Stadium includes a 24/7 linear feed distributed across both digital and broadcast platforms, as well as a comprehensive array of on-demand digital content. Stadium is owned by a collection of industry leaders including Silver Chalice, Sinclair Broadcast Group, BAMTech, the NHL, the PGA TOUR, and Meredith Corp. To learn more, visit watchstadium.com.

Facebook Watch is home to a wide range of shows, from scripted comedy and drama, to competition and reality series, to individual creators and live sports. This is a personalized viewing experience, where you can discover new series based on what your friends are watching and catch up on the shows you follow. Facebook Watch is available for free on mobile apps across Apple and Android, on desktop, laptop and on TV apps listed here videoapp.fb.com.