ESPN and the Arena Football League Announce Long-Term Broadcasting Deal
By Mark Fagan,
2:26PM, Tue. Dec. 19, 2006
Today the AFL made the announcment that ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPN on ABC will air a minimum of 26 Arena Football League games per season for five years starting with the 2007 campaign. ESPN has also purchased a minority share in the AFL as part of this deal and as a sign of their commitment to the league. This contract allows ESPN to show football on Monday nights year-round so now it's really time to ante up for that standard cable package. Broadcasting begins on Sunday, March 4 with regional matchups inlcuding the Dallas Desperados vs. the New York Dragons. The season-concluding ArenaBowl will be carried live from the New Orleans Arena on ABC Saturday, July 29. The Wranglers aren't part of the current ESPN schedule which is dominated by the Philadelphia Soul, the Colorado Crush, the Chicago Rush, and Dallas. Look for a Rush vs. the Crush matchup on Monday, June 18.
ESPN will televise a minimum of 17 regular-season games and nine playoff games including a minimum of three Wild Card games, three Divisional Playoff games, both Conference Championships, and the ArenaBowl. Back-to-back playoffs berths would go a long way toward establishing the Wranglers nationally so let's bring it, boys.
In other news, EA Sports has announced that the second installment of their AFL franchise, Arena Football: Road to Glory, will be released on Feb. 27, 2007. While our own Carson Barker didn't care much for the first installment, I found it to be an exciting high-scoring hard-hitting way to pass the time in between Maddens.