|Headquarters||Charlotte, North Carolina|
|Ken Haines (President & CEO, Raycom Sports)|
|Established||December 1982 (without a branding)
May 2010 (under the ACC Network branding)
|Affiliates||list of affiliates|
The ACC Network (unofficially known as the ACC Network by Raycom Sports) is an ad hoc television network featuring live broadcasts of college football and basketball events from the Atlantic Coast Conference. It is an exclusive presentation of its owner and operator, Raycom Sports, the sports syndication unit of Montgomery, Alabama-based Raycom Media. The network itself is based at Raycom Sports headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina. ACC Network broadcast games are shown locally on over-the-air broadcast stations, regional sports networks, as well as on online streaming service ESPN3 and the WatchESPN application on mobile devices.
ACC men's basketball had been broadcast by Raycom Sports (in association with Jefferson-Pilot Teleproductions) since the 1982-1983 basketball season. This was under a joint venture between Raycom Sports and Jefferson Pilot Teleproductions. Before Raycom/JP won the rights, C.D. Chesley was the producer of the games from 1958 until 1981, and then Baltimore-based Metrosports had the ACC rights just for the 1981-82 season. The first ACC basketball telecast by Raycom/JP Sports was an early-season game between the Virginia Cavaliers and the Duke Blue Devils on the night of December 8, 1982 at 9 p.m. E.T.
In 2006, JP Sports' parent company, the Jefferson Pilot Corporation, merged with Lincoln National Corporation, taking the broadcasting and sports broadcasting divisions with it. JP Sports became Lincoln Financial Sports, thereby renaming the joint venture Raycom/LF Sports. Lincoln Financial Sports was sold to Raycom Media in November 2007, making Raycom Sports the sole producer of all ACC projects and, since from January 2008 until March 2009, Southeastern Conference men's basketball and football.
A new branding
The ACC Network branding has been used on Raycom's ACC sports broadcasts beginning with the 2010-2011 academic season. The new branding was unveiled through a sub-license agreement with ESPN, with Raycom Sports continuing to be the long-time syndication home of Atlantic Coast Conference men's basketball and football. All of Raycom's ACC projects will be under the new branding. Raycom began syndicating the ACC Network beyond the ACC footprint sometime between 2010 and 2013.
Expanded national reach
Beginning with the 2014-2015 academic season, the ACC Network expanded distribution up to 84% of the entire United States. The close down of ESPN Plus-oriented SEC TV, which syndicated Southeastern Conference basketball and football from 2009 until the 2014 launch of the pay TV exclusive SEC Network, was part of the reason of the ACC Network's recent expansion. Many stations that carried SEC TV (some of which also carried with Raycom/Jefferson Pilot's coverage of Southeastern Conference basketball and football) replaced it with the ACC Network in select markets. The expansion would give former SEC TV outlets another option for sports programming besides relying solely on sports programming from their affiliated network.
In some occasions in certain markets, the ACC Network currently competes with upstart syndicated American Sports Network (owned by Sinclair Broadcasting Group) for viewer allegiances, but that depends on what ASN-run network the viewer lives in since ASN has rights to multiple conferences (including Conference USA, OVC, SoCon, Patriot League, CAA). However, a few stations actually carry programming from both the local ASN package and Raycom's ACC Network package since 2014, most notably including MyNetworkTV affiliate WUXP in Nashville, and a few others in the southeastern U.S.
In 2015, Raycom Sports and DTV America reached an agreement to bring the ACC Network to three of DTV America-owned stations, including stations in the Bowling Green, Kentucky, Jackson, Tennessee, and the Joplin, Missouri-Pittsburg, Kansas markets.
The ACC Network's coverage
Since 2005, Boston area MyNetworkTV affiliate WSBK has been running Raycom's syndicated ACC Basketball and Football. Because of WSBK's carriage in Canada. the ACC Network (through WSBK) is available to several cable and satellite subscribers in Canada because of WSBK's status as a superstation. This includes satellite subscribers of Bell TV and Shaw Direct, as well as cable providers such as Rogers Cable, Shaw Cable, Cogeco, and Persona.
The ACC Network is also available over-the-air to Canadians living close enough to a major American city with an ACC Network affiliate. Residents in Southwestern Ontario, including Windsor and the Chatham-Kent area, can access ACC Network broadcasts over-the-air and on cable through Detroit, Michigan CW affiliate WKBD-TV. , ACC Network programming is seen over-the-air In the Fort Erie/Niagara Falls, Ontario area through Buffalo, New York's CW affiliate WNLO. Due to WNLO’s one-million watts of Effective radiated power, its signal coverage can take ACC Network’s coverage as far north as the Toronto and Hamilton, Ontario area. ACC Network games could also be seen in southern Essex County, Pelee Island, and the London, Ontario area via Cleveland-based MyNetworkTV affiliate WUAB.
Mexico's border region and the Bahamas
Likewise, in Mexico, The ACC Network is also available over-the-air to any Mexican viewers who live close enough to an American city along the U.S.-Mexico border and equipped with digital TV tuners. It is viewable in the northern Cihihuahua, including Ciudad Juárez via CW affiliate KVIA-DT2, the Nuevo Laredo area in northwest Tamaulipas via Laredo, Texas NBC affiliate KGNS-TV, as well as in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico thanks to the signal coverage of San Diego, California area independent station KUSI-TV. ACC Network programming is also available in The Bahamas through Miami's CBS-owned station WFOR due to that station's cable carriage there.
Programming besides live games
- ACC Football Blitz - pre-game in-studio show
- ACC Basketball Tip-off Show
- Kings of the Court
- Raycom Sports - operator of the ACC Network
- American Sports Network
- ESPN Plus
- Southland Conference Television Network
- Press Release (July 1, 2014). "ACC Network Has Expanded National Reach" Raycom Sports. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
- 2007 ACC Tournament Official Program, page 24.
- Haygood, Daniel (Spring 2013). "Through Part of Seven Decades, From C.D. Chesley to Raycom Sports, ACC Basketball has Gaines Exposure Through Partnerships, Distribution, Innovation" (PDF). ACC Sports Journal. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
- ACCSlicks.pdf Raycom Sports. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
- Company History - Raycom Sports Retrieved February 2, 2015.
- Smith, Michael (October 4, 2010). "History with ACC secures Future for Raycom" (PDF). Sports and Business Journal. Retrieved March 14, 2015.
- ACC Network will be syndicated in 90 million homes | CollegeFootballTalk
- ACC Digital Network on LiveStream
- "TheACC.com | Videos". Atlantic Coast Conference. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
- Raycom/Jefferson Pilot ACC Syndicated Package Promotional Brochures (1990-2013)