AMES, Iowa – This Saturday marks a first in the collegiate sports industry when the Iowa State Athletics Department pushes Cyclones.tv – the university’s one-year-old online digital television channel – onto Mediacom’s statewide cable TV network to provide a live college football telecast.
Cyclones.tv Powered by Mediacom will carry a live high-definition football broadcast to HD subscribers of the season opener vs. Northern Iowa on Aug. 31 at 7 p.m. CDT on the new cable channel dedicated exclusively to Cyclone sports. The telecast will also be shown on the school’s online digital network. The Cyclones.tv production will include play-by-play and color commentary courtesy of the Cyclone Radio Network. A pregame show will precede the live game.
Iowa State Athletics launches Cyclones.tv in conjunction with its multimedia rights partner, Learfield Sports, and channel originator, Encompass Digital Media. Encompass will provide all content acquisition, ingest, storage and Master Control services for the channel through its Atlanta network operations facility. Cyclones.tv’s HD signal will be sent via bi-directional fiber to Ames, Iowa for statewide distribution.
The 24/7 channel – a first-of-its-kind partnership for Learfield and global leader Encompass – materialized through a carriage partnership between the Cyclones and athletics sponsor, Mediacom. The partnership will provide a solid statewide platform to subscribers of Mediacom’s expanded basic cable package. The Cyclones.tv channel on Mediacom will be available on both HD and SD channels, and Iowa State fans in neighboring states could also benefit if living in a market where Mediacom’s service crosses state lines.
Cyclones.tv will showcase non-stop Iowa State sports and related programming, initially in repeating six-hour time blocks. Those packaged segments will be interrupted with live sporting events or other programming, such as news conferences. Fans will be able to view live telecasts of nearly every Cyclone home women’s basketball volleyball, wrestling, gymnastics, soccer and softball event. Cyclones.tv will also telecast one football game annually (Northern Iowa on Saturday) and 4-8 men’s basketball games. Other programming will include specialty shows, classic games, features on Cyclone legends and coaches’ shows.
“I’m proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish in both an online format and now with the dedicated channel on Mediacom,” said Iowa State’s Director of Athletics Jamie Pollard. “It paves an unprecedented way for fans to connect with Iowa State sporting events through their existing cable subscription or online. BYU and Texas also have dedicated channels, but we stand alone in combining the delivery capabilities of Encompass to extend the reach of our digital network through Mediacom. A great deal of collaboration between various parties was critical to making the channel a reality, and Learfield’s role in orchestrating all of the moving parts has been phenomenal.”
“Mediacom’s long-time partnership with the Cyclone Athletic program has been strengthened by this unique collaboration that will elevate the success of student athletes across a wide variety of sports,” said Mediacom Group Vice President Steve Purcell. “We’re excited to use our Mediacom network to deliver quality programming from Cylones.tv to fans in more than 300 Iowa communities, and additional communities in neighboring states.”
Learfield’s Chief Content Officer Joe Ferreira commented, “Without a doubt, Cyclones.tv is a front runner, and it’s been a privilege for our company to play a role in the launch. Iowa State fans will enjoy the quality and depth of this channel featuring engaging content in an effort to quench the insatiable appetite they have for everything Cyclones.”
“College sports television popularity is thriving, and we are thrilled to be participating in such a groundbreaking venture,” said Keith Kozicki, Director, Sports Distribution for Encompass. “The network’s innovative programming is sure to capture significant audience within the college viewership and beyond.” Encompass is a Learfield Preferred Solutions Provider (PSP), a program established this spring to provide school partners and local properties a preferred list of corporate partners.
Iowa State fans who are not current Mediacom subscribers have the option of purchasing a monthly, quarterly or yearly online subscription to Cyclones.tv, providing on-demand sports programming with viewing choices for iPad and mobile devices. Details are outlined on www.cyclones.com.
Learfield Sports’ local entity, Cyclone Sports Properties, oversees all aspects of the Iowa State multimedia rights relationship. In addition to Iowa State, the company manages multimedia rights for more than 50 collegiate institutions and associations and titles the prestigious Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup. Its multimedia rights encompass numerous content distribution platforms to deliver the passion of college athletics across radio, television and digital networks to fans globally. Learfield Sports’ exclusive sports programming currently reaches more than 50 million television households nationally and delivers nearly 17,000 hours of radio programming on more than 1,100 radio stations. For more about its 40-year history and college portfolio, visit learfieldsports.com.
Mediacom Communications is the nation’s eighth largest cable television company and one of the leading cable operators focused on serving the smaller cities in the United States, with a significant concentration in the Midwestern and Southeastern regions. Mediacom Communications offers a wide array of broadband products and services, including traditional and advanced video services such as digital television, video-on-demand, digital video recorders, high-definition television, as well as high-speed Internet access and phone service. Through Mediacom Business, the Company offers affordable broadband communications solutions that can be tailored to any size business.
Encompass, a leader in digital media services, owns and operates state-of-the-art broadcast facilities throughout the United States, Latin America, United Kingdom and Asia. The company’s mission-critical media services provide broadcasters, cable networks, corporations and government entities with customized solutions for the management and distribution of content. With global access to large satellite and fiber footprints, Encompass has 24/7/365 Teleport facilities and technical personnel in Los Angeles; Atlanta; New York; Stamford, Conn.; Lino Lakes and Minneapolis, Minn.; Burbank, Calif.; Buenos Aires; London; and Singapore. For more information, please visit www.encompass.tv.