The arrival of Andrew Wiggins at Kansas is being anticipated by pretty much every single basketball fan in the country. It seems ESPN can be included in that boat, from KU Sports, Kansas has inked a deal with ESPN that will broadcast 70 campus events per year. The contract is for seven years and will begin in the 2013-14 season. They have also made a deal with Time Warner sports for 50 events per year.
Kansas’ athletic director Sheahon Zenger is excited about the contract.
“From the start of this process, our goals were to saturate the Kansas City market, distribute Kansas programming throughout the state and make our live events available nationally,” Zenger said. “We are meeting these goals through agreements like these with ESPN and Time Warner Cable. Both are significant steps for Kansas Athletics and we are excited about the future for all Jayhawk fans — wherever they may be watching.”
Of course ESPN did not do this deal simply because of Andrew Wiggins. Had they done that, it would not have been for seven years. That being said, it’s impossible to think that Wiggins going to Kansas didn’t help the Jayhawks in their negotiations. Regardless of how the six years after Wiggins go (let’s be honest, we are all expecting Wiggins to only play one year), they will probably have made their money and more simply off the six basketball games they will have shown in Wiggins’ freshman year.
The hype is real and it keeps getting bigger, in the last decade, there has never been so much fanfare for a player coming into his freshman year. Not even Harrison Barnes, who was ridiculously picked as a pre-season all American. Hopefully Wiggins is comfortable under pressure because it seems like it will only keep getting bigger from here.
We may have never gotten to see what Lebron James in college would have been like but this is starting to feel pretty close to it. As a neutral, Canadian basketball fan, I would be lying if I said I wasn’t excited.