ESPNU will tip off the basketball season with more than four hours of ESPNU Midnight Madness coverage on Friday, Oct. 18, at 9 p.m. ET. This year’s ESPNU special will feature on-site coverage from nine basketball programs, eight of which are in ESPN.com basketball writer Jason King’s Top 25: No. 1 Kentucky, No. 6 Duke, No. 9 Syracuse, No. 11 Oklahoma State, No. 13 Wichita State, No. 15 Memphis, No. 17 New Mexico, No. 21 UConn and Florida Gulf Coast. ESPN analysts will provide commentary from each site, with additional previews and interviews live from the ESPNU studio in Charlotte, N.C.
ESPN3 will carry six Midnight Madness events live in their entirety, beginning tomorrow, Oct. 4, at 7:30 p.m., with Late Night in the Phog featuring the No. 5 Kansas men’s basketball team. It will be the nation’s first chance to see 2013 No. 1 recruit Andrew Wiggins take the court as a Jayhawk along with highly anticipated teammates Joel Embiid and Wayne Selden. ESPN3’s coverage continues on October 18 with a comprehensive look at Duke, Kentucky, Oklahoma State, UConn and Syracuse events.
In total ESPN’s Midnight Madness coverage across networks will feature the top three 2013 recruiting classes – Kentucky, Kansas, Memphis – and a first glimpse at 19 freshmen from the 2013 ESPN 100.
2013 ESPNU Midnight Madness Highlights:
- Home Court – ESPNU host Matt Schick will be joined by college basketball analyst Jay Bilas, Seth Greenberg and Andy Katz. The studio team will provide analysis, previews and conduct phone interviews throughout the show with the nation’s leading head coaches.
- On the Road - ESPN commentators will provide coverage of various elements from nine college arena’s including scrimmages, player introductions, skill and dunk contests, team skits, head coach and player interviews, along with season previews. ESPN analysts on-site: Bruce Pearl, Darrin Horn, Dino Gaudio, Fran Fraschilla, Jimmy Dykes, Kara Lawson, Rebecca Lobo, LaPhonso Ellis, Len Elmore, Miles Simon, Rich Hollenberg, Sean Farnham and Tim Welsh.
- Special Guest – ESPNU will host its first head coach in-studio, Indiana Men’s Basketball Coach Tom Crean
- Notables – Kentucky will be a part of the special for the fifth consecutive year; UConn coverage will include a special men’s & women’s combined scrimmage with Kevin Ollie and Geno Auriemma coaching; Florida Gulf Coast, Wichita State and New Mexico will be featured for the first time.
|Basketball Team/ Commentator||Event Names||Network (Timing ET)|
TBD & Dino Gaudio
|Countdown to Craziness||ESPNU/
ESPN3 (8 p.m.)
|Florida Gulf Coast
|Dunk City After Dark||ESPNU|
Jimmy Dykes & Darrin Horn
|Big Blue Madness||ESPNU/
ESPN3 (7:30 p.m.)
|The Lobo Howl||ESPNU|
Fran Fraschilla & Sean Farnham
|Homecoming & Hoops||ESPNU/
ESPN3 (10 p.m.)
Rich Hollenberg & Tim Welsh
ESPN3 (9 p.m.)
Rebecca Lobo & Kara Lawson
ESPN3 (7 p.m.)
ESPN will mark the opening of college basketball competition just a few weeks later with the College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon providing more than 24 hours of consecutive basketball coverage over Monday, Nov. 11 and Tuesday, Nov. 12. The schedule includes 16 men’s matchups and two top-25 women’s games across ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU, ending with the third installment of the State Farm Champions Classic – featuring Michigan State vs. Kentucky and Kansas vs. Duke – from the United Center in Chicago.
The 24-hour college sports television network airs more than 650 live events annually and offers over 600 original studio shows. ESPNU has seen a steady increase since its inception on March 4, 2005 and is now in over 73 million households. The brand is also available in high definition on ESPNUHD, now in over 20 million homes. The network has long-term carriage agreements with all 10 of the top multichannel TV providers – Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox, DirecTV (Channel 208), DISH Network (Channel 141), Mediacom, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS TV and AT&T U-verse.
ESPN3 is ESPN’s live multi-screen sports network, a 24/7 destination that delivers thousands of global sports events annually and accessible online via WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app and through ESPN on Xbox LIVE to Gold level members. It is currently available to 73 million homes at no additional cost to fans who receive their high-speed Internet connection or video subscription from an affiliated service provider. The network is also available at no cost to approximately 21 million U.S. college students and U.S.-based military personnel via computers connected to on-campus educational networks and on-base military networks.
Media contact: Gracie Blackburn, firstname.lastname@example.org