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Fordham Basketball: Television Deal a Slam Dunk for Program and School

Charles Costello@@CFCostelloContributor ISeptember 25, 2014

Jan 18, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; Fordham Rams forward Ryan Rhoomes (30) dunks the ball against the Saint Louis Billikens during the second half at Chaifetz Arena. The Saint Louis Billikens defeat the Fordham Rams 70-48. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
USA TODAY Sports

Fordham University has reached an agreement with SportsNet New York, a regional sports network that is home to the New York Mets and Jets, to broadcast seven of the school's men's basketball games in 2014-15, it was announced on Monday.

Fordham Partners with SNY for Basketball Television Package http://t.co/Kk9gdA9aXE

— Fordham Athletics (@FordhamRams) September 22, 2014

In addition to the seven men's games, SNY will broadcast two women's games.

"We are excited to once again partner with SNY to showcase our basketball programs," Fordham director of athletics David Roach told FordhamSports.com. "We are pleased to be associated with a network that has such outstanding programming, and we look forward [to] continuing this partnership with SNY in the future."

This is a win-win for both the school and network. In New York City, there are three major regional sports outlets on television—SNY, the YES Network and the Madison Square Garden Network—making this a huge deal for the Rams, who will get major exposure in a crowded city market.

College basketball programming is important for SNY, too. The network is in need of filling out a lineup occupied for half the year by the Mets. All basketball games take place during the MLB offseason.

"SNY's partnership with Fordham Athletics continues to expand," Gary Morgenstern, SNY's senior vice president of programming, said according to the Fordham release. "As the home of the Atlantic 10 Conference in New York, SNY is thrilled to offer not only Ram fans, but basketball fans throughout the tri-state area, a slate of exciting games from this up-and-coming program once again in 2014-15."

Fordham head coach Tom Pecora recognizes the advantages of appearing on one of New York's top sports networks. 

"[When] we have games on SNY, I get calls from alumni in California who are watching it," Pecora told Bleacher Report on Thursday. "It can get picked up anywhere. The quality of the broadcast is off-the-chart. The talent they put on the games is very good."

"It's a commitment from the university to make sure that we can get some of these games televised on top of the package that the league gives us," he added. "[The] 24-hour news cycle includes sports. There are a lot more opportunities to be on television. Kids see that in recruiting, so it's very important in that sense, too."

This season will be Fordham's 20th in the Atlantic 10. Wins have been hard to come by, but this year could be different. So, yes, it's probably a good time for the Rams to appear more and more on television sets locally and nationally. But it's also something that Pecora sees as being good for the university as a whole.

"Our job, like any athletic department, is to get the university name out there in a positive light," he said. "It really becomes a great two-hour Fordham infomercial in a lot of ways. You put a good product out on the floor and they get to see shots of campus and student-body shots. There are a lot of families out there watching games that have children who aren't athletes that are saying 'that could be a great place for my son or daughter to go to school.'"

This is the second straight year of the Fordham-SNY partnership, and it represents only part of the Rams' television presence.

In addition to the seven games that will be shown on SNY, Fordham will appear 10 more times on either the CBS Sports Network, the NBC Sports Network, Fox Sports 1, the Atlantic 10 Network, the Big Ten Network and digitally on Campus Insiders.

Unless otherwise noted, quotes in this article were obtained firsthand.

Charles Costello covers the Fordham Rams for Bleacher Report. A full archive of his articles can be found hereTwitter: @CFCostello

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