The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

September 12, 2009

Sports coverage: CATV adds Big Ten Network

DANVILLE — The Big Ten Network expanded to another 14,000 households in the Valley on Friday when CATV Service, Inc., which serves Danville, Lewisburg, Milton and Watsontown, began offering the channel.

In making the announcement, Sam Haulman, the president and general manager of CATV, said the cable system believes the network, dedicated to showcasing the nation’s premier athletic and academic conference, will be an instant hit with Penn State fans in the area. Local fans will see an immediate impact with the Syracuse-Penn State game on the network beginning at noon today.

“Our customers have been patient and we’re really very pleased that they are now able to get the Big Ten Network,” Haulman said. “Our service area is obviously Big Ten country, and I expect the Big Ten Network to become a popular destination for our customers very, very quickly.”

CATV Service launched the Big Ten Network on Friday on channel 69 for customers in Danville, Lewisburg, Milton and Watsontown. Within the past month, Service Electric, another local cable outlet, added the channel.

Haulman said talks have been ongoing with Fox Cable, which owns the Big Ten Network nearly as long as it has been on the air. The network launched in August of 2007.

“We’ve been talking with Fox Cable about it since the inception of it,” said Haulman. “We’ve had some hurdles reaching an agreement. It was an ongoing process and the timing worked out.”

Haulman said Service Electric’s recent agreement certainly brought CATV’s push a little more to the forefront.

“I am sure that heightened the awareness with some of our customers.”

While local fans will obviously enjoy the channel’s in-depth Big Ten football coverage — at least four Penn State games are expected to air this year — the network is far from a football-only channel.

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