CHAMPAIGN, IL – Fighting Illini Sports Properties, the exclusive multimedia rights holder for Illini Athletics, has partnered with Nexstar Broadcasting WCIA TV to bolster exposure of Illini Athletics during the weekly newscast.

WCIA-News3-StraightWCIA will produce a segment entitled “Your Illini Nation” that will feature Illinois athletics with a focus on player interviews, stories, profiles and behind-the-scene footage that will provide viewers a different perspective of Illini Athletics. The various segments will air five times each week in WCIA 3 newscasts at 6 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

WCIX-Logos-Dk-Transparent“Your Illini Nation” will start in August with the first segment entitled “Coaches Corner,” which will run through the end of May. This segment will feature interviews with head coaches, administrators and other athletics personnel, and focus on current topics and questions surrounding the athletics programs.

Along with the feature segments, WCIA 3 will air preview shows for football, men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball prior to the season openers. Four football preview shows are currently scheduled to air in August and will feature a season preview, training camp highlights and all-access footage. Dates of the football preview shows are scheduled for August 9, 16, 23 and 30, with the volleyball preview show airing Sunday, August 2.

“Nexstar Broadcasting is proud to be partnering with the Fighting Illini to provide fans this additional access to see their athletic teams in action,” said WCIA, WCIX Vice President and General Manager Coby Cooper. “This new feature brings an added value to our local weekly broadcasts and all of us here at WCIA are excited to be part of this joint effort to further serve the Illini fan base.”

At this time the men’s and women’s basketball preview shows are scheduled for November with the men’s show airing November 8, 15, 22 and 29 following the WCIA 3 10 p.m. news. The women’s show is set for Sunday, November 1 following the 10 p.m. news broadcast.

“We are extremely excited for the 2015-16 athletic season to get underway so that we can see our student-athletes compete on the court and field, and this partnership just amplifies our excitement even more,” said Illinois Director of Athletics Mike Thomas. “WCIA 3 / WCIX 49 have provided an outstanding product and partnership for many years and their support of Illinois athletics is second to none.”

“We have had a trusted partnership with Nexstar Broadcasting and I appreciate their continued support of Illini athletics. This partnership will truly showcase the many great things our student-athletes do in competition and in our community. We will also be able to share and distribute these stories and segments to Illini fans throughout the state through the Nexstar affiliates,” said Fighting Illini Sports Properties General Manager Chris Andrews.

All feature segments will be available on immediately following the WCIA 3 news broadcast.

Fighting Illini Sports Properties is a property of Learfield Sports, which manages the multimedia rights and sponsorships for nearly 100 collegiate institutions and associations. Learfield titles the prestigious Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup, and represents collegiate institutions, conferences and arenas for their respective multimedia rights and sponsorship initiatives, and offers these partners with professional concessions and ticket sales, licensing and trademark consulting, digital platform expertise and venue and technology systems through its owned companies. To learn more about its history, businesses and job opportunities, visit