Big Ten Network pacted for carriage on Cox Cable Systems in the Cleveland, Ohio area late Thursday, in the latest example that must-have programming overcomes negotiation deadlocks. Cox has almost 150,000 subscribers in 10 suburbs on Cleveland’s west side and Big Ten gets on the basic tier.
The Cox deal is the fourth in a week for Big Ten Network, which earlier nailed down agreements with Time Warner Cable, Charter Communications and Mediacom Communications.
Most carriage deals are for the cable operators’ systems in Big Ten country, which is the Midwest and Pennsylvania.
A catalyst is the launch of the college football season, where the 11 teams in the Big Ten athletic conference are a major force with University of Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State and University of Illinois. Big Ten Network will telecast three of the first five Ohio State University games this season including this Saturday’s opener against Youngstown State University, which is another Ohio team.
Regarding Thursday’s deal, the Big Ten Network got placed on Cox Channel 62 and on Channel 724 in high definition, though channel positions may change later to cluster with other sports channels. Big Ten on a basic tier to all Cox cable subscribers in the Cleveland area.
Fox Cable Networks, which negotiates carriage agreements, is in a 20-year partnership with Big Ten conference.
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