MountainWest Sports Network, informally known as The Mtn. (but pronounced "the mountain") is an American regional sports network.
Launched on September 1, 2006 as a joint-venture of the Mountain West Conference (MWC), CBS College Sports Network (then CSTV) and Comcast. The Mtn. is a 24-hour television network devoted entirely to covering MWC sports.
The Mtn. also produces MWC events that air on Versus and CBS College Sports Network.
Launched on September 1, 2006 by the Mountain West Conference (MWC) and CBS College Sports Network, "The Mtn." is the first network dedicated solely to a college athletic conference. In 2006, the MWC elected to discontinue affiliation with ESPN due to a conflict over game schedules and financial compensation.
The network has covered 290 live sporting events in its first two years of operation. Details of football
telecasts are listed in the events section below
. Also on the schedule are current and former Olympic sports
, and track and field
- Mountain View - A twice-a-week show similar to SportsCenter, with current news and information
- Nightly 90-second news updates during evening hours
- Mountain Cap - Recap show that airs every Saturday after live sporting events
- Around the Mtn. - Panel show with sportswriters and bloggers
- It's a Numbers Game - Statistical analyses during football season
- Mountain Peak Performance - Olympic-sports news and highlights
- Team previews for each football, men's basketball, and women's basketball program
- Campus Cam and Campus View - Magazine shows produced by each member institution
- A Day in the Life - Follows teams and players around
- A Conversation with... - Combines interviews with participatory journalism
- Legends - Profiles of former MWC players and coaches. Debuted August 27, the day of its DirecTV debut, with Lavell Edwards.
Hosts and analysts
(past and present)
- Gary Bender
- Glenn Parker
- Courtney George
- Marius Payton
- Tim Neverett
- Bill Doleman
- Anne Marie Anderson
- Natalie Vickers
- Scott Sarra
- Tammy Blackburn
- Mark Knudson
- Marty Fletcher
- Larry Mangino
- Todd Christensen
- James Bates
- Rich Cellini
- Todd Berger
- Andrea Lloyd
- Bill Riley
- Amy Gant
- Dave Bollwinkel
- Mike Evans
- Ann Schatz
- Terri Goldberg
- Joe Cravens
The Mtn. is currently available in eight of the nine MWC markets, and the following 18 providers offer The Mtn:
- All West Communications (Utah, Wyoming)
- Bresnan (Colorado, Utah, Wyoming)
- Cable ONE (Idaho, New Mexico)
- CentraCom Cable TV (Utah)
- Comcast (Colorado, New Mexico, Utah)
- Cox (California, Nevada)
- Independent Cable Systems of Idaho (Idaho)
- Manti Tele Communications Company (Utah)
- MSTARmetro (Utah)
- Project Mutual Telephone (Idaho)
- Provo Cable (Utah)
- Rural Telephone Company (Idaho)
- Saratoga Cable (Utah)
- Silver Star Communications (Wyoming)
- Spanish Fork Community Network (Utah)
- Sweetwater Cable Television (Wyoming)
- TCT (Wyoming)
- Comcast.net (highlights only)
The Mtn. is not currently available on Dish Network satellite television (unlike the Big Ten Network).
On February 22, 2008, DirecTV and The Mtn. reached a carriage agreement in which the channel was added in time for the 2008-09 academic year.
As of November 3, 2007 Precis Communications which services roughly 25 rural areas throughout Utah, Nevada and Arizona has refused to carry The Mtn. unless they are allowed to put it on a tier package. Comcast states that it is a requirement that it comes with expanded basic service. Precis Communications has stated that "in order to pay for the cost of having The Mtn. we would either have to have it on a tier or raise all our customers rates by 2 to 3 dollars, which would dissatisfy our customers who do not want The Mtn."
On June 1, 2007, the presidents of Brigham Young University
and the University of Utah
, unsatisfied with the current distribution, issued a joint press release that they "retained a sports broadcasting attorney to explore all possible options in improving the distribution of athletic broadcasts to their fans".
On June 5, 2007 the MWC Board "reaffirmed its unanimous support of the league's television model and its commitment to working collectively as a unified group", and its Directors unanimously voted to join BYU and Utah to retain the attorney they had hired.
In an interview with KUTV, President Michael K. Young of Utah stated that "Every [MWC member] knows...President Samuelson and I have been clear about this for the last year and a half that it is absolutely essential that we get on satellite to make our games available to our fans. Anything short of that is unacceptable." He then added that "We are passionately committed to our having our football games being on TV this year.
- At least two college football games per week
- MWC men's basketball tournament (first two rounds; semifinal games are on CBS College Sports, final game is on Versus)
- MWC women's basketball tournament (all rounds except final game, which is on Versus)
- MWC baseball and softball tournaments (at least most games)
Information on specific programs comes from the half-hour special This is the Mtn.
, which aired in conjunction with the DirecTV launch. See also: