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Wednesday July 15, 2009Sun Sports Acquires Rights from ESPN to Exclusive SEC Football Games

Gainesville, Fla.

FOX Sports Net (FSN), the nation's leader in local sports, today announced a new multi-year television rights agreement with ESPN that expands its long-time partnership with the Southeastern Conference (SEC). ESPN secured the rights of the Southeastern Conference content in August 2008.

Beginning with the 2009-10 academic year, FSN's three regional sports networks serving the SEC territory Sun Sports, FOX Sports South and FOX Sports Southwest will be the outlets for a minimum of 91 SEC athletic events each year. Events will include:

  • Seven live, exclusive football games
  • 20 men's basketball games
  • 24 women's basketball games (16 regular season, eight tournament)
  • 16 baseball games (10 regular season, six tournament)
  • 24 additional Olympic sporting events (softball, volleyball, soccer, gymnastics)

FOX Sports Net (Sun Sports in Florida) will televise these events to more than 24 million cable and satellite households across the SEC coverage area.

"Sun Sports is pleased to bring sports fans in Florida this outstanding package of SEC programming, which supplements our extensive agreement with the University of Florida," said Steve Liverani, senior vice president and general manager, Sun Sports and FOX Sports Florida. "The SEC is one of the most competitive and popular conferences in the nation. This package gives us a terrific, high-profile lineup of live SEC games in football, basketball and more, ensuring that Sun Sports viewers will continue to see a wide variety of SEC sports and additional Gator programming not available anywhere else."

"The Southeastern Conference is pleased to continue its association with FSN," said Mike Slive, SEC Commissioner. "FOX Sports South, Sun Sports and FOX Sports Southwest have provided the SEC, and our institutions, with an important regional cable platform for the past 18 years both in terms of distribution and creative programming. FSN regional cable is an important part of the conference's overall television planning."

"FOX Sports Net strives to serve the local interest of sports fans across the Southeast by providing more coverage of the teams they are passionate about," said Jeff Genthner, senior vice president and general manager of FOX Sports South and SportSouth. "That commitment to local coverage is reflected in our partnership to televise SEC athletics. Our family of networks in the Southeast FOX Sports South, Sun Sports and FOX Sports Southwest has an 18-year history with the SEC and its member schools that has garnered the respect and trust of coaches, administrators and student athletes and we look forward to continuing that relationship."

Sun Sports reaches more than 6.5 million cable and satellite homes in Florida. FOX Sports South and its sister networks FOX Sports Carolinas and FOX Sports Tennessee collectively reach more than 12.6 million cable and satellite television households in seven states in the Southeast, including Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. FOX Sports Southwest reaches over 10.1 million cable and satellite TV homes in Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma and parts of New Mexico.

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