The Southeastern Conference is about to get even more powerful.
The SEC and ESPN are reportedly going to announce the planned launching of an SEC channel.
Street & Smith have a very informative report on this process and let it be known that a "formal announcement" will come Tuesday.
The Memphis Business Journal reports the announcement is scheduled for 12 p.m. ET at the Atlanta Hyatt, and that "University presidents, athletic directors, SEC Commissioner Mike Slive, ESPN execs and the conference’s corporate sponsors," are all expected to be in attendance.
Street & Smith also passes along that this network will launch in August of 2014 and that it will be a national channel.
It is no surprise that the SEC moved in this direction. This is the premier college football conference in the nation, and that means big television dollars.
The conference now follows the likes of the Big Ten and Pac-12 with the launch of its own network. Honestly, it is surprising that this announcement has taken this long.
However, as Street & Smith point out, the reason for the delay has been the process to land the third-tier broadcast rights from other outlets. Now that that process has run its course, it appears to be all systems go.
The SEC and ESPN will now go to work on filling out the staff and begin communicating with distributors. The MBJ reports that it is likely the headquarters for the network will be in Charlotte, N.C., with the ESPN Regional Television offices, while the primary home for the sales outlet is expected to be in Atlanta.
Given the draw of SEC football, this new channel will have a lot of clout in talks with distributors. As Street & Smith report, for all but a single game each week still held by CBS, the new network will hold the rights to every game.
It is hard to envision this network not being a big success, and that will make this powerful conference even more powerful. Obviously, the first benefit to the conference is the increased revenue it will likely bring in.
However, this will also increase exposure for the conference and help it push its brand to the masses.