Jan. 4, 2007
Hawk Supporters - We would like to address your concerns regarding the radio and tv broadcasts of our men's basketball games this year.
Despite the fact that we were a long-time partner with WPEN Radio, this year the station chose to opt for more year-round programming and increase its revenue significantly by airing Villanova football and basketball over either Saint Joseph's or Temple basketball.
We pursued all options for radio coverage, but unfortunately in this area, they are somewhat limited. Most AM stations are not willing to depart from their normal programming to air basketball games. And those willing to broadcast games already had one or two teams on their schedules, so the conflicts were unavoidable. FM stations were also approached but they are not agreeable to carrying any games.
Obviously, the best alternative is to have all of our games broadcast on one station, but that was not available. We chose to go with the combination of WFIL and WNTP, two stations with strong signals that have broadcast college basketball in this city over the years. In addition, as we've done before, we are broadcasting all of the games over the internet to supplement this coverage and give access to fans outside the listening area.
Programming conflicts were still unavoidable, but we were fortunate that WHAT stepped in to pick up the games that WFIL and WNTP could not carry. Again, we are aware that the WHAT signal is not as strong in some parts of the Delaware Valley, but it was the only available alternative and continues to be supplemented by the internet broadcasts.
As for television, there is no question that the new arrangement between the Atlantic 10 member institutions and CSTV has been a long and frustrating process. We're pleased to announce that an agreement between CSTV and Comcast SportsNet to provide coverage of A-10 basketball in Philadelphia has been finalized. That coverage will begin this weekend and Saint Joseph's first appearance will be the Rhode Island game on January 13 (note starting time of 2 p.m.). Please continue to check www.sjuhawks.com for the updated schedule.
The goal of the conference's new agreement with CSTV was for increased coverage and a better financial arrangement than we received with the old A-10 Network. During the negotiations with CSTV, they had already reached agreements with all of the BCS conferences for all sports other than football and basketball; had locked in arrangements with the Mountain West Conference for football and basketball; and wanted the A-10 to be their premier East Coast inventory.
There are many Comcast systems nationwide that have signed agreements with CSTV, and therefore we believed that the agreement in Philadelphia and other A-10 markets would be easier to reach.
It is true that this delay has caused some SJU non-conference games not to be aired in Philadelphia and obviously is not ideal for Saint Joseph's or any A-10 school.
The presidents of all the Atlantic 10 schools met with the president of CSTV in the fall and aired their concerns. This is the exact situation that the Big East and Villanova had faced in the past--- i.e., Villanova's home games were not aired on Comcast due to the contract the Big East has with its rights holder.
We have been working to improve the quality of our audio and video streaming and will continue to do so. If you have a problem with the streaming on your computer, you are urged to contact Customer Service at CSTV (email firstname.lastname@example.org; phone 888-870-CSTV) and they will assist you.
We hope that this information has provided you a better insight into the situation that is a result of the constantly changing landscape of radio and television. Please be assured that we share your frustration and we are constantly seeking alternatives to provide you with the best coverage of Saint Joseph's basketball.
As always, we thank you for your support of Saint Joseph's. The Hawk Will Never Die!
Don DiJulia, Director of Athletics