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Scott D. Pierce
Scott D. Pierce writes about television for the Salt Lake Tribune. Vice president of the Television Critics Associationn, he's covered TV in Utah since 1990.

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Ute fans/satellite TV subscribers should be grateful Friday's game is in Logan

University of Utah football fans who subscribe to DirecTV or the Dish Network will be able to watch Friday's game. And they have Utah State and the WAC to thank for that.

Weird, huh?

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The Aggies-Utes game airs Friday at 6 p.m. on ESPN2. Because it's at Utah State. And Utah State is a member of the Western Athletic Conference. And the WAC has a contract with ESPN.

If the game was in Salt Lake City, odds are that it would be on the Pac-12 Network. And if that were the case, DirecTV and Dish subscribers would be out of luck.

There is no deal on the horizon between the P12N and either of the satellite companies.

Will it take two years to get on DirecTV, like it did with The Mtn.? I don't think so.

Will Dish eventually come to an agreement with the Pac-12 Network, which it never did with The Mtn.? I think so.

But hopes of that happening anytime soon seem to be fading.

University of Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne tweeted on Thursday that rumors of a deal with DirecTV are "sadly not true. Deal not close at this point." And he encouraged Wildcat fans to attend Saturday's game in person.

The folks at the Pac-12 are still trying to ramp up the pressure on the satellite providers. Trying to get more DirecTV and Dish subscribers to call and demand they pick up P12N.

Here's the latest statement from the Pac-12 Network:

"As we approach another weekend of thrilling Pac-12 football, the fact is that a number of providers, including DirecTV, Dish, AT&T U-Verse, Verizon Fios and Charter Communications, are still refusing to reach a fair agreement with us.

"These providers all carry the Big Ten Network. Why are they giving Pac-12 fans the Big Ten, but not the Pac-12?"

Ute fans/satellite subscribers get another reprieve next week because the BYU-Utah game is also on ESPN2. (Because of the Pac-12's contract with the worldwide leader.) After that, they can only be certain of seeing two of the remaining nine games (vs. USC on ESPN and vs. Colorado on Fox or FX).

Most of the other seven games will probably end up on P12N.



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