The University of Central Arkansas football team will be on television at least four times this season, including two home games, its the season opener at Texas Tech and the Oct. 4 game against Stephen F. Austin, which is coached by former UCA coach Clint Conque.
The Bears’ game against the Red Raiders on Aug. 30 was already set for Fox Sports Southwest.
The Southland Conference Television Network released its schedule Tuesday in conjunction with ESPN3, an internet network.
The SLC Television Network and ESPN3 will feature the Bears three times — twice at home at First Security Field at Estes Stadium — among its 15 exclusive football broadcasts in 2014. UCA games will include the Sept. 27 home game against Nicholls (SLC TV), the Oct. 4 matchup at Stephen F. Austin (ESPN3) and the Nov. 8 home game against Lamar (SLC TV).
The SLC matchups will be carried on more than 25 regional affiliates across Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas, as well as to a nationwide audience on ESPN3 and ESPN GamePlan. Five of the telecasts will be shown nationally and exclusively by ESPN3.
“With the growth in affiliate coverage, Southland football is a proven television commodity, and we are excited to continue tell the great stories of competitive excellence and academic achievement within the league,” said SLC commissioner Tom Burnett in a news release.
The Southland Television Network, now in its second season of HD broadcasts, will feature a regional slate of 3 p.m. Saturday games. The final week of the regular season is reserved for a “wild card” selection, as the Southland TV Network will determine which game to broadcast based on the championship race and other factors. The Nov. 22 possibilities include UCA at Sam Houston State, Northwestern State at SFA, and Lamar at McNeese State.
Southland Conference Television Network broadcasts will be available on local channels across the region, as well as new affiliates outside the league’s footprint. The full list of stations will be updated prior to each game at southland.org/television. In addition to the Southland TV Network slate, ESPN3 will deliver five exclusive game broadcasts.
The season’s first broadcast will take place as part of Southland Conference Football Media Day in Lake Charles, La., as ESPN3 presents a preview special in primetime. The show is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 23, at 7 p.m. Hosts Lincoln Rose and Erin Cofiell will have interviews with head coaches and student-athletes from all 11 football-playing institutions.
Southland teams will also participate in 11 other non-conference telecasts, including the first game of the 2014 season on Aug. 23, when Sam Houston State plays at Eastern Washington on ESPN.
The Southland Conference Television Network has won seven Telly Awards, the most recent for its live production of Sam Houston State vs. Southeastern Louisiana football in 2013. In addition, SLCTV has earned a pair of College Sports Media Awards honors, receiving recognition for best live game coverage in 2009-10 and 2012-13.