The Longhorn Network (LHN) is an American regional sports network that is owned as a joint venture between the University of Texas at Austin, ESPN and IMG College, and is operated by ESPN (itself owned jointly by The Walt Disney Company and the Hearst Communications). The network, which launched on August 26, 2011, focuses on the Texas Longhorns varsity sports teams of the University of Texas at Austin.
The Longhorn Network, whose name and logo was revealed during the Longhorns' spring football game on April 3, 2011, features events from 20 different sports involving the Texas Longhorns athletics department, along with original and historical programming. The network also features academic and cultural content from the UT Austin campus.
|Launched||August 26, 2011|
|Owned by||University of Texas at Austin|
|Picture format||720p (HD), 480i (SD)|
|Slogan||Hook 'Em Horns|
|Dish Network||Channel 407 (HD/SD)|
|DirecTV||Channel 677 (HD only)|
(AR, KS, LA and OK)
|Check local listings|
(AR, LA, NM, TX and VA)
|Check local listings|
|Check local listings|
|Channel 383 (HD/SD)|
|AT&T U-verse||Channel 611 (SD)|
Channel 1611 (HD)
|Verizon FiOS||Channel 320 (SD)|
|Google Fiber||Channel 230 (HD/SD)|
The first national provider to carry the Longhorn Network was fiber optic television service Verizon FiOS, which announced a deal to carry the network in August 2011. On August 31, 2012, the network began to be carried on AT&T U-verse. Several smaller cable providers throughout Texas have also added the channel – namely Consolidated Communications, Bay City Cablevision, Mid-Coast Cablevision, Texas Mid-Gulf Cablevision, En-Touch Systems, E-Tex Communications and Grande Communications.
On October 4, 2012, New York-based Cablevision Systems Corporation began carrying LHN on its systems in the Western United States. Its New York City area systems were not included in the deal. Two months later on December 12, Cox Communications announced a comprehensive long-term distribution agreement that included adding the Longhorn Network to its systems in Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana and Oklahoma. On December 31, 2012, Charter Communications announced that it would add LHN as part of a wide-range long-term carriage deal with ESPN and The Walt Disney Company. Charter also took over Cablevision's western systems in the first quarter of 2013 and maintained the rights agreed to by Cablevision for LHN. It is available on its systems in Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Texas and Virginia.
On March 3, 2014, The Walt Disney Company and Dish Network announced a deal to carry the Longhorn Network as part of a new long-term, wide-ranging distribution agreement. The channel became available on the satellite provider on May 28 of that year. On December 23, 2014, DirecTV announced a long-term, wide-ranging distribution agreement with Disney that included the carriage of Longhorn Network.
Longhorn Network launched on DirecTV on January 21, 2015 along with Fusion. It became available on regional sports network on the Choice package in the Southwestern United States and on the Sports Pack everywhere else.
Although the Longhorn Network has an internet presence hosted by ESPN, it functions as a TV Everywhere service that is unavailable to subscribers unless their cable and internet service provider carries the network, with further geographical restrictions (usually confined to the states contained within the Big 12 Conference); WatchESPN enforces the same restrictions in carrying the Longhorn Network feed on that site. Patrick Ryan, Policy Counsel, Open Internet at Google pointed out that the reach of LHN as of September 2012 was about 10 million potential viewers, whereas if it were online, it could reach 230 million viewers in the U.S., or as many as 2 billion potential viewers.
The first live sports event broadcast on the network aired on the date of its launch, the women's volleyball team's 2011 season opener against the Pepperdine Waves. The first live football game telecast on the network aired on September 3, 2011, in which the Longhorns played against the Rice Owls. The Longhorn Network would expand its sports coverage to include five UTSA Roadrunners football games to its schedule for sister campus University of Texas at San Antonio's inaugural football season, the first of which aired on September 10, 2011. The majority of the live events are handled by the Longhorn Network Operations department, which manages the crew that sets up the equipment used to air the event. Over 200 live events were managed by this department during the 2011–12 school year.
In February 2018, the network began to carry coverage of women's softball games at UT's McCombs Field where the university mainly served as a host school for neutral-site matches between northern teams (southern schools and domes regularly host northern schools during the winter), rather than the Longhorns as a competing team, allowing some form of video coverage to the competing schools.
From the initial announcement of the Longhorn Network, ESPN had made it known that it desired to broadcast up to 18 high school football games per season. The idea was a cause for concern among other Big 12 schools, especially Texas A&M, due to what that university viewed as possible recruiting violations, and was partly responsible for A&M's decision to leave the Big 12 for the Southeastern Conference in 2012. During an August 1, 2011, meeting of all Big 12 athletic directors, it was decided that the issue of airing high school football games on the network would be postponed for one year, allowing time for the NCAA to rule on the matter. On August 11, 2011, the NCAA ruled that no school or conference network would be permitted to broadcast high school sports or any other high school programming, effectively bringing the issue to a close.
In addition to a non-conference game each season, ESPN desired to place a Big 12 Conference game on the Longhorn Network. At the same Big 12 meeting that discussed high school football telecasts, it was agreed upon that a conference game would be acceptable as long as both schools and the conference office approved the broadcast. It was reported that ESPN asked Texas Tech for permission to broadcast the team's November 5 game against the Longhorns on the network. ESPN told the university that the game would most likely not be carried on any of the ESPN family of networks, leaving a broadcast on the LHN as its only option. In return, ESPN promised to televise two non-conference football games over the next four seasons, televise some other non-football programming, $5 million cash, and help from the network to try to arrange a home-and-home series against a top BCS conference school. Texas Tech passed on the offer with the university's chancellor Kent Hance explaining that "I don't want a Tech fan to have to give one dime to the Longhorn Network". ESPN then contacted Oklahoma State about airing games on the network; that university also refused the invitation to appear on the network. Texas Athletics eventually announced that the Kansas Jayhawks had agreed to let its game against the Longhorns on October 29 air on LHN (the University of Kansas's third-tier media rights are also managed by LHN co-owner IMG College). The agreement allowed the Longhorn Network to be the national carrier of the game, except in Kansas markets, where the game was shown on broadcast television. ESPN revealed plans to broadcast the Texas Tech-Texas State game on the Longhorn Network in 2012, however Texas Tech threatened to drop the game in favor of an 11-game schedule, resulting the game being removed from LHN's schedule.
In November 2012, ESPN syndicated a second feed of a Longhorn football home game against Iowa State to ABC-affiliated television stations across Iowa (including KETV in Omaha, Nebraska, which is owned by ESPN part-owner Hearst Corporation) to provide access to the game within that state. A secondary announcing team was used for the Iowa State feed. The same was done in September 2013 for a matchup against Ole Miss throughout the state of Mississippi. Mediacom eventually established an online/traditional network with Iowa State in their service area, Cyclones.tv, featuring university programming, along with any live games featuring Texas which are only available through Longhorn Network.
Concerns have been raised by some fans, bloggers and journalists that ESPN's financial stake in the Longhorn Network creates a potential conflict of interest. Some fear that ESPN's involvement in the network will inhibit journalistic integrity as that network has a financial interest in the success of the athletic programs at the University of Texas. Sports Illustrated writer Richard Deitsch wrote: "The network's existence... creates an impossible situation for ESPN's college football producers and reporters (plenty of whom care about reporting). For every story ESPN does on Texas and its opponents, they'll be skeptics wondering what the motivation was for the story."
Additionally, some have questioned the stipulation included in the network's founding agreement that gives Texas the right to dismiss LHN announcers that do not "reflect the quality and reputation of UT." An ESPN spokesperson addressed the situation by stating: "This is not common in ESPN agreements because this UT network is so unique/new for us ...The provision does not allow for random replacement of commentators or reaction to critical comments... it's more about potential situations where a commentator makes completely inappropriate comments or gets involved in inappropriate actions."
The 2013 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was held from May 16 through June 6, 2013 as the final part of the 2013 NCAA Division I softball season. The 64 NCAA Division I college softball teams were selected out of an eligible 284 teams on May 12, 2012. 31 teams were awarded an automatic bid as champions of their conference, and 33 teams were selected at-large by the NCAA Division I Softball Selection Committee. The tournament culminated with eight teams playing in the 2013 Women's College World Series at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City.Ahmad D. Brooks
Ahmad D. Brooks (born March 13, 1980) is a retired National Football League player and sports broadcaster for ESPNU, the Longhorn Network and KTXX-FM. He is also co-founder and president of Helping Adolescents/Athletes Lead Others (HALO). Brooks is a graduate of the University of Texas, where he served as captain of the football team in 2001. He played in the NFL for three years before retiring in 2005.Bevo (mascot)
Bevo is the live mascot of the athletic programs at the University of Texas at Austin. Bevo is a Texas longhorn steer with burnt orange and white coloring from which the university derived its color scheme. The profile of the Longhorn's head and horns gives rise to the school's hand symbol and saying: "Hook 'em Horns". The most recent Bevo, Bevo XV, was introduced to Texas football fans on September 4, 2016. His predecessor, Bevo XIV, died of cancer on October 16, 2015. Bevo XV is owned by Betty and John Baker's Sunrise Ranch in Liberty Hill, Texas; Sunrise Ranch also owned Bevo XV's predecessors Bevo XIII and Bevo XIV.Criticism of ESPN
Throughout its history, ESPN and its sister networks have been the targets of criticism for programming choices, biased coverage, conflict of interest, and controversies with individual broadcasters and analysts. Additionally, ESPN has been criticized for focusing too much on men's college and professional sports, and very little on women's sports. Other criticism has focused on issues of race and ethnicity in ESPN's varying mediated forms, as well as carriage fees and issues regarding the exportation of ESPN content. Some critics argue that ESPN's success is their ability to provide other enterprise and investigative sports news while competing with other hard sports-news-producing outlets such as Yahoo! Sports and Fox Sports. Some scholars have challenged ESPN's journalistic integrity calling for an expanded standard of professionalism to prevent biased coverage and conflicts of interest. Mike Freeman's 2001 book ESPN: The Uncensored History, which alleged sexual harassment, drug use and gambling, was the first critical study of ESPN.Daron Roberts
Daron K. Roberts (born November 29, 1978 in Mt. Pleasant, Texas) is a Harvard Law grad turned NFL coach. Currently, he is a university lecturer and founding director of the Center for Sports Leadership & Innovation () at the University of Texas. He also serves as a lecturer in the Plan II Honors program where he teaches courses on sports leadership and innovation. His writings have appeared in the Houston Chronicle and Huffington Post as well as Forbes and Fortune. He has served as a guest analyst for ESPN's Longhorn Network. Previously, Roberts worked as a defensive quality control assistant for the Cleveland Browns (American football).
He has been featured in ESPN the Magazine, Businessweek and Sports Illustrated.
Previously, Roberts was a corners coach with West Virginia University and was an assistant secondary coach with the Detroit Lions. He served as the defensive quality control assistant for the Kansas City Chiefs after graduating from Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where he was named one of the school's 75 Most Fascinating Alumni. He is a member of the inaugural class of the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program, a partnership between Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.Roberts speaks on topics of sports leadership, organizational management and transition strategy.ESPN
ESPN (originally an initialism for Entertainment and Sports Programming Network) is a U.S.-based pay television sports channel owned by ESPN Inc., a joint venture owned by The Walt Disney Company (80%) and Hearst Communications (20%). The company was founded in 1979 by Bill Rasmussen along with his son Scott Rasmussen and Ed Egan.
ESPN broadcasts primarily from studio facilities located in Bristol, Connecticut. The network also operates offices in Miami, New York City, Seattle, Charlotte, and Los Angeles. James Pitaro currently serves as chairman of ESPN, a position he has held since March 5, 2018 due to the resignation of John Skipper on December 18, 2017 (who succeeded George Bodenheimer as president in 2012). While ESPN is one of the most successful sports networks, there has been much criticism of ESPN, which includes accusations of biased coverage, conflict of interest, and controversies with individual broadcasters and analysts.
As of January 2016, ESPN is available to approximately 91,405,000 paid television households (78.527% of households with at least one television set) in the United States. Nielsen has reported a much lower number in 2017, below 90,000,000 subscribers, losing more than 10,000 a day. In addition to the flagship channel and its seven related channels in the United States, ESPN broadcasts in more than 200 countries, operating regional channels in Australia, Brazil, Latin America and the United Kingdom, and owning a 20% interest in The Sports Network (TSN) as well as its five sister networks in Canada.
In 2011, ESPN's history and rise was chronicled in Those Guys Have All the Fun, a nonfiction book written by James Andrew Miller and Tom Shales and published by Little, Brown and Company.ESPN3
ESPN3 (formerly ESPN360 and ESPN3.com) is an online streaming service owned by ESPN Inc., a joint venture between The Walt Disney Company (which operates the network, through its 80% controlling ownership interest) and the Hearst Communications (which holds the remaining 20% interest), that provides live streams and replays of global sports events to sports fans in the United States.History of the Big 12 Conference
The Big 12 Conference is a ten-school collegiate athletic conference headquartered in Irving, Texas. It is a member of the NCAA's Division I for all sports; its football teams compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS; formerly Division I-A), the higher of two levels of NCAA Division I football competition. Member schools are located in Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and West Virginia.
The Big 12 Conference is the second youngest of the major college athletic conferences in the United States, having formed in 1994 from a merger of one of the oldest conferences, the Big Eight, with four prominent colleges from Texas that had been members of the Southwest Conference. From its formation until 2011, its 12 members competed in two divisions. Two charter members left the conference in 2011, and in 2012, two more left, while another two joined from other conferences. In 2012, the Big 12 formed an alliance with the Southeastern Conference to host a joint post-season college bowl game between the champions of each conference, which would eventually become the Sugar Bowl.IMG College
IMG College is the United States' largest collegiate sports marketing company, representing more than 200 of the nation's top collegiate properties including the NCAA and its 89 championships, NCAA Football, leading conferences, and many of the most prestigious colleges and universities in the country. Headquartered in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, IMG College employs more than 700 people in nearly 100 offices throughout the United States.
IMG College was formed from the acquisition of Host Communications and The Collegiate Licensing Company in 2007. Additionally ISP Sports was acquired in 2010.
In 2012, a joint venture with Learfield created IMG Learfield Ticket Solutions, now representing 30 universities as the leader in outsourced ticketing. Additionally, IMG College Seating, the largest premium cushion stadium seat provider in college athletics, now represents more than 90 universities nationwide, managing more than 500,000 college football stadium seats annually.
The IMG College Audio Network consists of more than 2,100 radio stations airing primarily football and men's basketball games along with weekly call-in coaches' shows. The media network also includes over 100 television stations airing weekly half hour coaches' shows for most of the universities represented by the company. IMG Audio produces more than 35,000 hours of college sports programming annually for these affiliate stations.
Host Communications was founded in 1974 and created one of the first college sports multimedia contracts with its creation of a radio network for the University of Kentucky. ISP Sports was founded in 1992 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina providing sports marketing and broadcast services for collegiate athletics across the United States. In addition to the Winston-Salem headquarters, the company operates more than 90 regional offices.
The organization also co-owns the Longhorn Network and Campus Insiders, the latter through which it holds a stake in 120 Sports.Kaylee Hartung
Kaylee Hartung (born November 7, 1985) was a reporter for CNN. She also worked for ESPN, where she contributed to the SEC Network, primarily on the show SEC Nation. She was a reporter for the Longhorn Network. She was a CBSNews.com reporter on the daily Washington Unplugged program and featured correspondent for Unplugged Under 40. Following a summer internship with NBC, she began her career as an assistant to Bob Schieffer, which led to an associate producer position on the Sunday public affairs program Face the Nation.List of Alamo Bowl broadcasters
The following is a list of the television networks and announcers who have broadcast college football's Alamo Bowl throughout the years.Longhorn IMG Sports Network
The Longhorn IMG Sports Network is a radio network in the United States that is dedicated to broadcasting live events and programming of the Texas Longhorns football, basketball (men's and women's), baseball, and softball teams. Owned by IMG College and the University of Texas at Austin via a joint venture, the network consists of 36 affiliates covering 90% of the state of Texas. The network provides broadcasts in the English language for most affiliates, with some affiliates providing broadcasts in Spanish for the benefit of Hispanic listeners.Moody College of Communication
The Moody College of Communication is the communication college at The University of Texas at Austin. The college is home to top-ranked programs in advertising and public relations, communication studies, communication sciences and disorders, journalism, and radio-television-film. The Moody College is nationally recognized for its faculty members, research and student media. It offers Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Journalism degrees as well as robust graduate curricula. The Moody College of Communication operates out of the Jesse H. Jones Communication Complex and the Belo Center for New Media, which opened in November 2012. The college has a $106 million endowment as of April 14, 2016.NCAA Division I Baseball Championship
The NCAA Division I Baseball Championship is held each year from May through June and features 64 college baseball teams in the United States, culminating in the eight-team College World Series at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha in Omaha, Nebraska. Oregon State is the 2018 NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament champion, defeating runner-up Arkansas 5-0 in Game 3 to win the 2018 College World Series championship finals.
The tournament is unique in that it features four tiers of competition, alternating between double-elimination brackets and best-of-three series. In fact, throughout the entire 64-team tournament, a team can lose a total of four games and still be crowned champions.
During team selection, sixteen teams are given "national seeds". The top eight of these teams automatically host a super regional if they advance past the regional round, assuming that they have the facilities to do so. Only 2 times has a national seed not hosted due to lack of proper facilities. As in other NCAA tournaments, conference champions (usually determined by a tournament) receive automatic bids, and the selection committee fills the remaining spots.
The first tier, called Regionals, consists of 16 locations that include four teams, seeded 1 through 4, competing in a double-elimination bracket. The 16 host sites are determined mostly by merit – most No. 1 seeds host – but are also contested by bids from schools guaranteeing the NCAA a certain amount of revenue from that regional. Host teams traditionally have a large advantage, although the home team for each game is determined by rule, so the host school sometimes plays as the visiting team. The winner of each regional moves on to the second tier, the Super Regionals.
Super Regionals are played at eight locations throughout the country and consist of the 16 surviving teams, matched up by predetermined regional pairings. National seeds 1-8 cannot meet each other in the super regional and are guaranteed to host. If the higher national seed in the bracket is eliminated in the regional stage, but the lower national seed advances, the super regional will be played at the national seeded team's field. If the two seeds are not national seeds, the Super Regional will be bid upon by the two competing teams. If the national seed wins the regional but is unable to host, the Super Regional is awarded to the other regional winner in its bracket. This scenario played out in 2015 when national seed Missouri State could not host a Super Regional because the minor league Springfield Cardinals, which have scheduling priority at the stadium where both teams play, were playing a home series at that time. The Super Regional was thus awarded to Arkansas. The two teams play a best-of-three series to determine who moves on to the College World Series. Although one school hosts all three games, the teams split home-team status in the first two games, with the host school batting last in the opening game and first in game 2. If a third game is needed, a coin toss determines home-team status. Florida State has lost five Super Regionals as host, but has also advanced to the College World Series five times under the current format.
The final eight teams meet in Omaha, Nebraska in the College World Series. The CWS mimics the earlier rounds, consisting of two double-elimination brackets of four teams each. Thereafter, the winners of each bracket meet in a best-of-three final. The winner of this final series wins the College World Series and is crowned the national champion.Painter Hall
Painter Hall (formerly the Physics Building) is an academic building located on the University of Texas at Austin campus. Named after Theophilus Painter, the building was constructed in 1933, expanded in 1957 and remodeled in 1974.Ricky Williams
Errick Lynne "Ricky" Williams Jr. (born May 21, 1977) is a former American football running back who played 12 seasons in the National Football League (NFL) and one season in the Canadian Football League (CFL). He played college football for the University of Texas, where he was a two-time All-American and won the Heisman Trophy. Williams was drafted by the New Orleans Saints fifth overall in the 1999 NFL Draft and spent three seasons with the team before he was traded to the Miami Dolphins in 2002. He played for the Dolphins for two seasons, and retired for the first time from football in 2004. Due to his suspension from the NFL in 2006, he played for the Toronto Argonauts that year. Williams re-joined the Dolphins in 2007 and played with them until 2010, and spent the 2011 season with the Baltimore Ravens. He was formerly an assistant football coach at the University of the Incarnate Word and is currently a football analyst for ESPN's Longhorn Network. In 2015, Williams was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.Samantha Ponder
Samantha Ponder (née Steele) (born December 11, 1985) is an American sportscaster who is currently the host of Sunday NFL Countdown on ESPN. Prior to hosting Sunday NFL Countdown, Ponder worked as a reporter/host for ESPN college football and as a basketball sideline reporter. Ponder replaced Erin Andrews on College GameDay Saturdays at 10 AM ET on ESPN, as well as co-host of the Saturday 9 AM ET edition on ESPNU. In addition to her duties on College Gameday, Ponder had been the regular sideline reporter for ESPN's Thursday Night College Football with Rece Davis, Jesse Palmer, and David Pollack from August 2012 until 2014. Ponder also appeared on the ESPN-owned Texas-oriented regional network Longhorn Network.United States cable news
Cable news channels are television channels devoted to television news broadcasts, with the name deriving from the proliferation of such networks during the 1980s with the advent of cable television. In the United States, early networks included CNN in 1980, Financial News Network (FNN) in 1981 and CNN2 (now HLN) in 1982. CNBC was created in 1989, taking control of FNN in 1991. Through the 1990s and beyond, the cable news industry continued to grow, with the establishment of several other networks, including, Fox News Channel (FNC), MSNBC, and specialty channels such as Bloomberg Television, Fox Business Network, and ESPN News. More recent additions to the cable news business have been CBSN, Newsmax TV, TheBlaze, Fusion, One America News Network, part-time news network RFD-TV, and—for a time—Al Jazeera America.
As some of the most highly available channels, FNC, CNN, and MSNBC are sometimes referred to as the "big three" with Fox News having the highest viewership and ratings. While the networks are usually referred to as 24-hour news networks, reruns of news programs and analysis or opinion programming are played throughout the night, with the exception of breaking news.
Regional 24-hour cable news television channels that are primarily concerned with local programming and cover some statewide interest have included Spectrum News (a brand used for multiple networks including in upstate New York, North Carolina, Florida and Texas), NY1 (which operates from New York City), News 12 Networks, FiOS1, and the former Northwest Cable News (NWCN) (which operated from Seattle). New England Cable News covers the six-state region of New England.WatchESPN
WatchESPN (formerly ESPN Networks) is an Internet television website and mobile application operated by ESPN Inc., a joint venture between The Walt Disney Company (which operates the network, through its 80% controlling ownership interest) and the Hearst Communications (which holds the remaining 20% interest).
The service provides streaming simulcasts of ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNews, ESPN Deportes, Longhorn Network, SEC Network, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater for select cable television subscribers in the United States; it is also the exclusive platform for broadcasts from ESPN3, which until 2011, had operated as a separate website with a similar functionality to WatchESPN. The service is only available to subscribers of participating cable, IPTV and satellite television providers, and is not offered as a standalone internet-only subscription service available to those who do not have a pay television subscription.
Since the launch of ESPN+ in 2018, ESPN has increasingly preferred paywalling new content acquisitions on the service instead of ESPN3 and WatchESPN.
Located in: Austin, Texas
|Sports broadcasting rights|