DISH Satellite services has signed a carriage deal with the Pac-12 Network, becoming the first satellite provider to carry the Pac-12 Network, providing access to customers in large areas, including the majority of the conference not served by any of the cable providers who have signed with the conference. It also provides an alternative to customers in some areas served by Comcast or Cox outside the conference footprint where Comcast and Cox have refused to provide the Pac-12 Network.
The agreement is a multi-year deal, and will provide access to football games on the Pac-12 Network this weekend, using DISH channels 413, 445, and 446.
The new agreement also provides DISH with exclusive category sponsorship for Pac-12 athletic programs. The sponsorship includes stadium signage and logo rights with each of the 12 member schools.
"DISH wanted to deliver Pac-12 Networks to its customers and our fans will benefit," said Gary Stevenson, President of Pac-12 Enterprises. "DISH's line-up and ability to offer Pac-12 fans nationwide access to an unprecedented number of live quality sporting events make this a huge day for DISH customers and Pac-12 fans."
DISH customers will also have login access to stream all Pac-12 Networks content and additional sporting events through Pac-12 Now in the coming weeks.
"As a leader in TV Everywhere technology and providing customers the ability to watch live programming on the go, DISH is a great partner for Pac-12 Networks as we build out our digital and TV Everywhere capabilities that ensure fans can access our content when and wherever they choose," concluded Stevenson.
Pac-12 Networks is available to all DISH customers as a free preview for a limited time. It is included in America's Top 120+ package and above for customers in Pac-12 territory (which includes the six states with Pac-12 schools) and available nationwide in the Multi-Sport Pack for $9 per month.
Whether this finally prompts Directv, which has the largest share of the satellite market, to finally conclude a deal with the conference remains to be seen. Whether the exclusive signage deal will be factor in that is also unknown. But Directv will be in danger of losing customers in droves inside and outside the conference footprint with the advent of an alternative.