The SEC Network debuts on Thursday night, and from the looks of things, it’s going to be awesome. So many cable and satellite companies have signed on to carry the network that when it goes live at 6 pm nearly everyone will be able to watch. And every SEC fan will want to.
Friends and I had talked about what the SEC Network should be when the channel was announced. We thought it should include all SEC, all the time. We thought it should skew toward SEC history more so than trying to debate everything all the time. We didn’t want to see a watered down version of Around the Horn and PTI wasting good air time. It looks like we will be in good shape, at least to begin with.
For the 14 days prior to the A&M kickoff the network will devote a block of time each day to playing four “classic” games for each institution. The games will be aired back to back starting at midnight and going into the next day. The games are mostly from about 2005 forward.
Before we get to see USC’s highlights, we have to suffer through some lowlights first. For Tennessee they’ll be replaying last season’s game. For Kentucky they’ll be showing the 2010 game. Arkansas gets to relive their glory in 2007, and Missouri can take solace in the 2005 Independence Bowl. Neither of the back to back Vanderbilt disasters made the cut for the Commodores, so the only secondary trauma from those games may be this mention.
Carolina will have the spotlight beginning at midnight on August 27. First there will be the 2010 Alabama game, which was an easy pick for the network. Second will be the 2012 Georgia game, which isn’t much for the average fan to watch, but is entertaining for Gamecocks. Next will be the SEC East clinching 2010 Florida game, and of course the 2013 Missouri game will also be shown.
There will be a South Carolina preview at 7 on August 23, and the regularly scheduled programing looks very, very good as well. My favorite looks like SEC in 60. The SECN is going to replay two games from the weekend and condense each into 60 minutes. If they do it like CBS does with their game, they’ll edit out the time in between plays, which usually allows a 3 1/2 hour telecast to be replayed in an hour. Hopefully that will air on Sunday afternoons so we can watch the games we missed the day before.
Another wonderful looking thing will be called Film Room. ESPN calls it an “every week sit down with a different head football coach in the SEC for an exclusive film session, breaking down the X’s and O’s of game footage.” If done properly this could be invaluable to fans. Rarely do analysts really go deeper into strategy and tactics the way coaches do. If the coaches get in depth in this session it will be very educational for everyone watching.
There will also be a SportsCenter type program that will be all SEC. It’s called SEC Now, which means we’ll be able to see what we care about instead of finding out about LeBron’s latest contract negotiation.
(H/T to Mr. SEC who reported on this earlier.)