Regional sports network
In the United States of America and Canada, a regional sports network, or RSN, is a cable television station that presents sports programming to a local market. The most important programming on an RSN consists of live broadcasts of professional and college sporting events, as those games generate an overwhelming percentage of an RSN's advertising income. During the rest of the day, these stations show other sports and recreation programming. These channels are often the source content for out-of-market packages.
Regional sports networks are generally among the most expensive channels on a cable television lineup, due to the expense of rights to the local sports they carry. A typical RSN, as of 2012, carries a retransmission fee of $2 to $3 per subscriber, lower than ESPN and premium channels but higher than all other cable networks. These high prices are supported by demand for the often popular local sports teams they carry; transmission disputes between distributors and RSNs are often controversial and protracted.
Fox Sports Networks 
For years, the default RSN for many markets was owned by Fox Sports, but an increasing trend is for the teams whose games make up the lucrative programming to own the RSN themselves. This serves two purposes: First, the teams make more money operating an RSN than they would collecting a licensing fee from, for example, Fox Sports Net.
Second, by owning their own RSN, teams that must share revenues with other members of their league can mask its broadcast-related profits. Under the old model, a team collects a large fee for licensing its games to the RSN. That fee would then be disclosed and shared with the other teams in the league. Under the new, team-owned RSN model, the team demands only a nominal fee, so the profits for local broadcasting stay with the team. The name of the networks was shortened to Fox Sports (Region/City) with the start of the 2008 college football season as part of a rebranding effort. The Pittsburgh, Rocky Mountain, Utah and Northwest affiliates, owned by DirecTV Sports Networks, were rebranded as Root Sports on April 1, 2011. They still carry the same local teams and national FSN programs.
Current Fox Sports affiliates 
The current Fox Sports affiliates and the major teams they carry are:
- Fox Sports Arizona - carries the Arizona Diamondbacks, Phoenix Coyotes, and Phoenix Suns.
- Fox Sports Carolinas - carries the Carolina Hurricanes and Charlotte Bobcats.
- Fox Sports Detroit - carries the Detroit Tigers, Detroit Pistons and Detroit Red Wings.
- Fox Sports Florida and Sun Sports - carries the Florida Panthers, Miami Marlins, Tampa Bay Rays, Orlando Magic, Miami Heat and Tampa Bay Lightning.
- Fox Sports Indiana - carries the Indiana Pacers.
- Fox Sports Kansas City - carries the Kansas City Royals.
- Fox Sports Midwest - carries the St. Louis Cardinals and St. Louis Blues.
- Fox Sports New Orleans – carries the New Orleans Pelicans.
- Fox Sports North - carries the Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Wild.
- Root Sports Northwest - carries the Seattle Mariners.
- Fox Sports Ohio - carries the Cleveland Cavaliers, Columbus Blue Jackets, and Cincinnati Reds.
- Fox Sports Oklahoma - carries the Oklahoma City Thunder.
- Root Sports Pittsburgh - carries the Pittsburgh Pirates and Pittsburgh Penguins.
- Prime Ticket and Fox Sports West - carries the Los Angeles Dodgers, Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Angels, and Los Angeles Kings.
- Root Sports Rocky Mountain - carries the Colorado Rockies.
- Fox Sports San Diego - carries the San Diego Padres.
- Fox Sports South and SportSouth - carries the Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Hawks.
- Fox Sports Southwest - carries the Texas Rangers, Dallas Mavericks, San Antonio Spurs, and Dallas Stars.
- Fox Sports Tennessee - carries the Nashville Predators and Memphis Grizzlies.
- Root Sports Utah - carries the Utah Jazz.
- Fox Sports Wisconsin - carries the Milwaukee Brewers and Milwaukee Bucks.
Former Fox Sports affiliates 
Some current networks were once owned and operated by Fox Sports Net, and they all still show national Fox Sports Net programs and games, since the markets they serve have no FSN affiliate. They are:
- Comcast SportsNet Bay Area - used to be Fox Sports Bay Area
- Comcast SportsNet New England - used to be Fox Sports New England
- Comcast SportsNet Chicago - replaced Fox Sports Chicago in 2006 due to acquiring local professional sports rights from Fox Sports Chicago
- Comcast SportsNet Houston – replaced Fox Sports Houston in 2012 due to acquiring local professional sports rights from Fox Sports Houston
- MSG Plus - used to be Fox Sports New York
Alternate feeds and channels 
Fox Sports Ohio 
Fox Sports Ohio is unique among the FSN affiliates because it actually has two full-time 24-hour feeds, one for Cleveland and one for Cincinnati (some television systems improperly call the latter 'Fox Sports Cincinnati' to avoid confusion among viewers). National programming is exactly the same. However, only the Cleveland feed carries the Cleveland Cavaliers while only the Cincinnati feed carries the Columbus Blue Jackets and Cincinnati Reds.
Reds games also air on Fox Sports Indiana.
Fox Sports Networks subfeeds and alternate / overflow feeds 
Some Fox Sports affiliates have subfeeds to eliminate conflicts when two teams that they have rights to are playing at the same time, so they can air both games at once. They are:
- Root Sports Rocky Mountain - has the subfeed Root Sports Utah
- Fox Sports South - has the subfeeds Fox Sports Tennessee and Fox Sports Carolinas
- Fox Sports Southwest - has the subfeeds Fox Sports Oklahoma and Fox Sports New Orleans
Some Fox Sports affiliates have alternate (or overflow) feeds for the same purpose, named after the host network with "Plus" after it (i.e. Fox Sports Detroit Plus).
Subfeeds and alternate (overflow) feeds are only used during live games, and are turned off the rest of the time.
Some affiliates were once subfeeds but are now full channels. Fox Sports Kansas City and Fox Sports Indiana were once subfeeds of Fox Sports Midwest, and Fox Sports Wisconsin was once a subfeed of Fox Sports North.
Comcast SportsNet - NBC Sports Regional Networks 
Seeing an opportunity to serve sports fans on a more local level and generate profits, cable giant Comcast began creating their own RSN – Comcast SportsNet – in the 1990s. With the January 2011 merger with NBCUniversal, NBC Sports has taken operational control of these networks and they are expected to become more acquainted with their sister national sports network, NBC Sports Network.
- Comcast SportsNet Bay Area serves the San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose area with rights to San Francisco Giants and Golden State Warriors games. Formerly known as FSN Bay Area.
- Comcast SportsNet California, based in Northern California with rights to Sacramento Kings, Oakland Athletics and San Jose Sharks games. Sister channel of Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. Formerly known as Comcast Sports Net West.
- Comcast SportsNet Chicago, partner in the network with Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Chicago Blackhawks and Chicago Bulls ownership.
- Comcast SportsNet Houston is the exclusive home of the Houston Rockets beginning in the 2012-13 NBA season, and the Houston Astros beginning in the 2013 MLB season.
- Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia in Philadelphia. Formed in 1997 to take the place of SportsChannel Philadelphia, which first aired in the late 1980s. Has rights to Phillies, 76ers, and Flyers games. Very first Comcast SportsNet station to launch and was a pioneer in the world of team owned sports networks.
- Comcast SportsNet Northwest, based in Portland, Oregon. Has rights to Portland Trail Blazers games.
- Comcast SportsNet New England - formerly FSN New England. Carries the Boston Celtics and New England Revolution
- SportsNet New York, owned by the New York Mets, Time Warner and Comcast, which launched on March 16, 2006.
- Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast (CSS), based in Atlanta with sub-regional feeds available. Airs regional college and high school games and other sports. Owned jointly by Comcast and Charter Communications, and only distributed to cable systems. The Comcast 'crescent C' logo is used for the channel's logo despite Charter's co-ownership. Also has the subfeed Comcast Sports Southwest, which mainly broadcasts in the Houston area.
- Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, formerly known as Home Team Sports (HTS), based in Washington, D.C.; Fox and Comcast acquired this network from Viacom in 2000 along with Midwest Sports Channel in Minneapolis and Milwaukee. Fox later purchased 100% of MSC in a swap with Comcast for HTS and renamed it FSN North. Has rights to Washington Wizards and Washington Capitals games, many of which are broadcast in High Definition. Also airs many DC United games.
Alternate feeds on Comcast SportsNet 
Just like FSN, most Comcast SportsNet affiliates have alternate (or overflow) feeds to avoid conflicts when 2 teams they have rights to are playing at the same time, so they can show both games at once. They are named after the host network with "Plus" after it (i.e. Comcast SportsNet Chicago Plus). The alternate (or overflow) feeds are only used during live games and are turned off the rest of the time. Comcast SportsNet Chicago also has a 2nd alternate called Comcast SportsNet Chicago alternate or Plus 2.
The CSN alternate channels are also used to show FSN college football and basketball games.
Comcast SportsNet in the San Francisco Bay Area & Sacramento Valley 
Since the San Francisco Bay Area and the rest of Northern California have so many sports teams, it has two Comcast SportsNet affiliates which split coverage of local sports: Comcast SportsNet California and Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. It is the only market that has two 24 hour, full-time Comcast SportsNet affiliates. Due to the territorial rules set by the National Basketball Association, Golden State Warriors games do not air in the Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto television market on CSN Bay Area, while for the same reason, CSN California can not air Sacramento Kings telecasts in the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose market.
- Sportsnet East, which serves the Ottawa region, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
- Sportsnet Ontario, which serves all of Ontario excluding the Ottawa region
- Sportsnet West, which serves Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Nunavut and the Northwest Territories.
- Sportsnet Pacific, which serves British Columbia and the Yukon.
The Sports Network (TSN) operates two regional sports networks:
- Réseau des sports (RDS), serving Quebec. It is notable for all of its programming being in French, the predominant language in the province. The channel is available nationwide, but because of the limited reach of French outside Quebec, most of its sports coverage is centered around the province. This division also produces TSN Habs, a part-time network featuring English-language dubs of Montreal Canadiens games on a part-time basis, and RDS2, an overflow channel.
- TSN Jets, a part-time network featuring the Winnipeg Jets, available in Northwestern Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Nunavut.
Independent regional sports networks 
The following is a list of regional sports channels which are not part of a larger national network:
- Altitude Sports and Entertainment, owned by Kroenke Sports Enterprises, owned by Stan Kroenke. Airs Colorado Avalanche hockey, Denver Nuggets basketball, Colorado Mammoth lacrosse, Colorado Rapids soccer, Colorado Springs Sky Sox minor league baseball and other Denver and Rocky Mountain area sports & general interest programming. Altitude's alternate (or overflow) feed is called Altitude 2.
- BCSN, Buckeye Cable Sports Network operated by Block Communications for Toledo, Ohio.
- Catch 47, Tampa Bay sports area network.
- Channel 4 San Diego (4SD), based in San Diego with rights to Mountain West and West Coast Conference games. Owned by Cox Communications.
- Comcast Television (Michigan) (CTV) airs CCHA hockey games, Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference football, Mid-American Conference football, Michigan High School Athletic Association games of several sports, college and high school magazine shows, the monthly magazine show about the Detroit Tigers Your Tiger Ticket, as well as outdoor sports shows. Available exclusively on Comcast to Michigan customers.
- Cox Sports Television, based in New Orleans, airs New Orleans Hornets basketball, New Orleans VooDoo arena football, and regional college action. (Louisiana, Texas, Florida and Arkansas).
- ESPN Plus and Raycom Sports syndicate college football and college basketball games to over the air broadcast stations and some cable or satellite channels. Their games are also available on ESPN GamePlan and ESPN Full Court.
- Image Sports Network, covering Erie, Pennsylvania.
- MSG Network or (MSG) - The first regional sports network in the United States. It was launched in 1969 and serves the New York City Metropolitan Area. Its new sister channel is MSG Plus, formerly FSN New York. The alternate (or overflow) feeds of MSG and MSG Plus are called MSG 2, MSG Plus 2, and the Sabres Hockey Network. MSG and MSG Plus carry the New York Knicks, New York Rangers, New York Islanders, New Jersey Devils, Buffalo Sabres, New York Liberty, and New York Red Bulls.
- Metro Sports, Kansas City's 24-hour sports network.
- Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN), owned by the Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals, televises every available game of both teams (320 games annually). Official Network of the Baltimore Ravens, Georgetown Hoyas, George Mason Patriots, UNC Wilmington Seahawks. Partnerships with Big South Conference, BB&T Classic. Regional provider of the Big East Game of the Week (football, men's basketball). Televises more than 520 live major sporting events annually. MASN's alternate (or overflow) feed is called MASN2.
- Midco Sports Network, operated by Midcontinent Communications, is carried on all Midcontinent cable systems in South Dakota, North Dakota and western Minnesota. Midco Sports Net broadcasts University of South Dakota and South Dakota State University sports, carries Fighting Sioux Sports Network's broadcasts of University of North Dakota sports, along with many other smaller colleges in the Dakotas and Minnesota. Midco Sports Net broadcasts many games in HD and has two alternate (overflow) feeds.
- New England Sports Network (NESN), which is owned by the Boston Red Sox (80%) and Boston Bruins (20%). Broadcasts Red Sox and Bruins games, the Beanpot, Boston College Basketball, Quinnipiac University athletics, and other live programming.
- SportsTime Ohio (STO), launched in March 2006 and owned by the Cleveland Indians. Began as a gametime-only network, now broadcasting 24 hours a day.
- Time Warner Cable SportsNet, a regional sports network operated by Time Warner Cable in the upstate New York cities of Rochester, Syracuse, Watertown, Binghamton, and Buffalo.
- Time Warner Cable Sports 32, a regional sports network operated by Time Warner Cable in Wisconsin.
- TV2 Sports, operated by Service Electric, covers the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, Reading Phillies and local high school sports for portions of eastern Pennsylvania.
- Yankees Entertainment and Sports (YES), which is owned by Yankee Global Enterprises LLC with 40% owned by Goldman Sachs. Carries the New York Yankees and Brooklyn Nets.
- Time Warner Cable SportsNet and Time Warner Cable Deportes, networks (each in English and Spanish) that are joint ventures of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Southern California system cluster of Time Warner Cable. In an agreement signed on February 14, 2011, the Lakers and Time Warner Cable inked a 20-year, multi-million dollar agreement in which all Lakers games not designated for an ABC or TNT national telecast would be televised on two channels, each with English and Spanish-language broadcast teams on separate channels. These networks launched at the start of 2012–13 NBA season, and besides being carried on Los Angeles, Coachella Valley, and San Diego-area Time Warner systems (as Time Warner Cable is the primary cable operator in most of Southern California), the channels will be made available to other television service providers such as Cox Communications, Charter Cable, DirecTV, Dish Network, AT&T U-verse, and Verizon FIOS.
College networks 
- Big Ten Network (BTN) airs sports involving Big Ten Conference universities exclusively. It is a joint venture between The Big Ten Conference, the conference's twelve schools, and the Fox Cable Networks division of News Corporation. Big Ten Network has four overflow feeds for football.
- Pac-12 Network is the national network in a group of 7 American sports television networks dedicated to the Pac-12 Conference. The 7 networks, titled Pac-12 Networks, include the national network and 6 regional networks: Pac-12 Los Angeles (USC & UCLA), Pac-12 Washington (Washington & Washington State), Pac-12 Oregon (Oregon & Oregon State), Pac-12 Bay Area (Stanford & Cal), Pac-12 Arizona (Arizona & Arizona State), and Pac-12 Mountain (Utah & Colorado). The national network was available in at least 48 million homes at time of launch, while the regional networks are available in every home of their respective region in Pac-12 territory. The Pac-12 Network will be the third network devoted to a specific conference after BTN and the now defunct Mtn. The networks will be the first owned fully by a conference without support from outside groups (BTN has Fox as a 49% owner and Mtn. had CBS and Comcast as partners).
- byutv airs many sports involving the Brigham Young University Cougars, along with BYU-Idaho and BYU-Hawaii, including live and encore BYU football games under a unique rights deal with ESPN (the Cougar football team is currently a football independent). The network is owned by the university itself, though its main purpose since coming on-air in 2000 is to air programming and films pertaining to both BYU and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints nationally, with BYU sports serving as a secondary lure for viewers.
- Longhorn Network is dedicated to the University of Texas at Austin, and is a joint venture between the school, ESPN, and IMG College, though this arrangement has proven controversial to other members of the Big 12 Conference and Texas A&M due to a perceived recruiting advantage. Proposals to air Texas high school football on the network were taken off the table due to these factors.
The Southeastern Conference explored starting its own 24-hour cable network, but a recent content deal by the University of Florida with Fox's Sun Sports,  and a long term deal between the SEC and the ESPN family of networks  have ended its likelihood. ESPN Plus later reached a deal with the SEC for the syndicated SEC Network for football and basketball games, which is basically under the same arrangement as past SEC rights holders Raycom/Lincoln Financial/Jefferson-Pilot Sports.
Defunct networks 
- Empire Sports Network (Upstate New York). Operated from 1991 until it ceased broadcasting March 7, 2005, upon the collapse of its parent company Adelphia Communications and the sale of their principal customer, the Buffalo Sabres.
- Sports Time, which broadcast home games of the Cincinnati Reds, Kansas City Royals, and St. Louis Cardinals in 1984, and selected home games of the St. Louis Blues in 1984-85. Not to be confused with the current SportsTime Ohio.
- Sports View, which was the cable home of the Milwaukee Brewers for three seasons (1984–86).
- Carolinas Sports and Entertainment Television (C-SET), which broadcast Charlotte Bobcats games in the 2004-05 season.
- Arizona Sports Programming Network/"Cox 9": Named for the channel number on which it appeared on local cable systems, ASPN/COX 9 (owned by Cox Communications, the incumbent cable operator for the Phoenix area) aired Phoenix Firebirds baseball games and Phoenix Suns home games throughout its long history. In 2003, the channel removed all of its professional sports and moved to cable channel 7 (which resulted in the renaming of the channel) and Fox Sports Arizona picked up the cable/satellite rights.
- BlazerVision: This network aired Portland Trail Blazers games on pay-per-view as late as 2000. It was then replaced by Action Sports Cable Network, which showed other sports events as well. The channel folded for good in November, 2002.
- SportsChannel Los Angeles: This network, formerly Z Channel, aired Los Angeles Dodgers, California Angels, and Los Angeles Clippers games from 1989 to 1993. Unlike other SportsChannel affiliates, it did not convert to FSN; instead, it folded outright.
- ESPN West: This network was to have shown games of the Anaheim Angels and the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim; both teams and the network were then owned by the Walt Disney Company. It was announced in late 1997, but folded in 1998 without broadcasting a single show.
- Victory Sports One: Owned by the Minnesota Twins, it folded in 2004 after only three months on the air, due to the inability of the Twins to reach deals with any Twin Cities area cable system or satellite service. Twins games immediately returned to Fox Sports North.
- ONTV / Sportsvision / Hawkvision: This network aired Chicago White Sox, Chicago Bulls, and Chicago Black Hawks games on pay-per-view television in the 1980s and early 1990s. It was once available by converter boxes tuned to OTA channel 60 and 44, now WXFT. It then moved to basic cable and became SportsChannel Chicago and FSN Chicago before it folded in 2006. Now Comcast SportsNet Chicago is in its place.
- Home Sports and Entertainment: It carried many games of Texas-based baseball and pro basketball teams until it became Prime Sports; it is now Fox Sports Southwest.
- PASS Sports: Detroit-based regional sports channel that presented coverage of professional and college teams in Detroit and Michigan; in 1997, the channel folded after Fox Sports Detroit won the rights to the Detroit Pistons and bought the rights to the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Red Wings from PASS. Some current Fox Sports Detroit announcers used to work for PASS.
- SportSouth: Atlanta-based sports channel with professional and college sports coverage from Atlanta and other parts of the South. Originally run in part by Ted Turner, it was sold to Fox and became Fox Sports South in the mid-1990s. As part of the sale, Turner was prohibited from owning another RSN, but used a loophole (by airing some non-sports programming) to launch Turner South, which, on October 13, 2006, was sold to Fox and became a new SportSouth.
- Grizzlies Regional Sports Network: This proposed network for the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies folded before its first scheduled game; the team re-signed with Fox Sports South instead.
- Midwest Sports Channel: Became Fox Sports North. See also WCCO-TV.
- PRISM: This Philadelphia-based network was replaced by Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia.
- Home Team Sports: Became Comcast SportsNet Washington
- Royals Sports Television Network (Kansas City, western Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Iowa), owned by the Kansas City Royals. After the 2007 MLB season, RSTN ceased operations and all Royals games will be broadcast on Fox Sports Kansas City, a new spinoff of Fox Sports Midwest.
- Comcast Local, also known as CL, aired from 2004–2008. It aired professional, collegiate and high school sports throughout most of Michigan and Indiana. They owned the rights to a number of Big Ten Conference and Mid-American Conference sports telecasts, as well as the Detroit Ignition of the MISL and Canadian Football League games. Merged into a similar channel Comcast Television in Michigan in March 2008.
- Columbus Sports Network (CSN), broadcasting events, features, highlights and news on professional, collegiate, scholastic and amateur sports teams in the Columbus, OH area. Ceased operations in 2008 and now operates an all-infomercial lineup.
High Definition 
Nearly all RSNs broadcast select content in High Definition. Fox Sports and Comcast SportsNet affiliates have dedicated HD channels, which are used for both local and national HD programming, mainly games. All Fox Sports affiliates use 720p and all CSN affiliates and independent channels use 1080i.
See also 
- Pac-12 Announces deal for national, regional networks, ESPN , retrieved 2011-07-27
- "Pac-12 Networks: News and notes from the Stevenson teleconference". 2011-08-10.
- "Pac-12 creates its own network". 2011-07-28.
- SEC explores launching its own TV Network
- Florida rights deal may rule out SEC channel
- ESPN scores 15 year SEC rights deal
- Kaiser's Blog: Info on RSN history and some regions.