Tom Izzo Is Not A Fan Of The BTN Anymore

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

I don't think I've ever witnessed such a great idea at the time become such a complete mess just as quickly as the Big Ten Network has. BTN and most notably Comcast have been in a standoff even before the network was launched, and while they've come close to a deal it's the BTN that has held steadfast to their demands. Now Big Ten Coaches who once supported the network are speaking out on the channel....

"I think it has been a PR nightmare," Izzo said Monday. "And, I think it has hurt all of us. We have so many things right now that we're trying to fight ... and then we throw this at them," Izzo said. "I make more calls than I ever have this year to people that write me, really upset about it. ... It bothers me."

"Five years from now, if cable companies pick it up does it end up better than it was and we're just going through a bad time?" he asked. "I just don't like the bad time being on my dime."

The Big Ten Network and Comcast tried to be upbeat Tuesday in their responses to Izzo's comments.

"We clearly know it's been a difficult situation for fans and we are working very hard to reach agreements with other cable companies so that they can have access to the network," said Elizabeth Conlisk, Big Ten Network vice president of communications. "Coach Izzo has been enormously supportive of the network. For him to express his frustration, it only makes us say we're not happy with the situation, either."
Well shit....couldn't they have just listened to every Sports fan in America the first few months of the Football season and figured this out? Why the hell does it take the league's most prominent Basketball coach to change things???

It's one thing to want to make something of a new network and actually succeed, but the Big Ten Network is now the model of how NOT to do things.

Izzo on Big Ten Network: a 'PR nightmare' (Sporting News)
Izzo: Big Ten Network is 'PR nightmare' (The Detroit News)

Posted by Awful Announcing- at 11:49 AM


This BTN fiasco has ramifications all over the dial. Because a good number of games aren't available over-the-air, it seems ESPN has picked up at least one extra Big Ten matchup that wouldn't be on national TV (usually involving Michigan). If the BTN & the conference thought that they'd get people with torches and pitchforks going to their cable operators after the App St.-Michigan game, they were sadly mistaken. No one will even mention the BTN once basketball season is over.

Anonymous said...
Feb 27, 2008, 12:19:00 PM  

The BTN has been doing a spectacular job of giving customers what they want, too. Minnesota hockey, which has a contract with Fox Sports, was forced to be on BTN friday night when they played Wisconsin. So during the middle of the game they break into coverage of the game with the Sampson news conference from IU. Makes perfect sense to me: IU basketball fans aren't watching Wisconsin/Minnesota hockey, and Minnesota and Wisconsin hockey fans don't care about a bounceyball presser during their game.

Keep up the great work, BTN.

Feb 27, 2008, 12:26:00 PM  

AA- What the hell is TBN?

Anonymous said...
Feb 27, 2008, 2:00:00 PM  

I agree with Tom Izzo about not liking the Trinity Broadcasting Network!

Oh, my bad, the same thing goes for the Big Ten Network. The one good thing about it the BTN is that is allowed the Appalachian State upset of Michigan to be broadcast (and preserved for highlights) in HD.

Anonymous said...
Feb 27, 2008, 2:05:00 PM  

the REAL story is how we should pressure Congress for ala cart cable -- paying for ONLY the channels you want.
i don't want Sci-Fi, HGTV, Home Shopping, Headline News.
let me pay for the channels i WANT --- BTN, ESPN, FSN, Golf Channel, Speed, etc.

Anonymous said...
Feb 27, 2008, 2:13:00 PM  

I'm dyslexic today for some reason. Happens every few days.

Feb 27, 2008, 2:17:00 PM  

Not that I would watch it anyway, but it's always great when you don't get BTN when you live in Columbus, Ohio. Job well done, idiots.

Time Warner sucks just as much though.

GMoney said...
Feb 27, 2008, 3:49:00 PM  

Seriously, Comcast, you can put CSPAN2 (not just CSPAN, but f*cking CSPAN2!) and two dedicated infomercial channels on basic cable, but BTN is a no-go even in college towns? Something tells me that wasn't well thought out.

Anonymous said...
Feb 27, 2008, 7:58:00 PM  


My Comcast outside Detroit has CSPAN2 andCSPAN3, something called the Current channel and a station that's just 'To Be Announced' with the 'off-the-air' color bars 24/7, but no BTN. I might've bitched earlier about the BTN, but Comcast is just as culpable, and there's no real incentive to get the channel on cable after about two weeks from today. Who's clamoring for Michigan softball (unless Arizona & Taryne Mowatt is involved)?

Anonymous said...
Feb 27, 2008, 8:16:00 PM  

The best way to get around all of this is to eliminate the cable company and go to dish. My gets installed tomorrow and I don't have to pay for a "sports tier". I'll get BTN and other sports stations and I'll still pay less than I have been for comcast.

Anonymous said...
Feb 28, 2008, 10:24:00 AM  

The Big Ten Network took the games off of broadcast and existing cable channels in the first place. Therefore it is their responsibility to do whatever they can to make sure people can see the games.

The longer the games are off the air the more detriment the network does to the conference it was formed to help. Tom Izzo gets it and is speaking up, good job. Now if only the rest of the coaches would do that we might be able to watch some Big Ten hoops.

Unknown said...
Feb 29, 2008, 4:52:00 PM  

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