The M Zone brings up something that has us thoroughly depressed: The upcoming launch of the Big Ten Network.
But, Will, you ask, aren't you a Big Ten guy? Don't you get swoony over memories of Kiwane Garris? Yes, and yes. But we live in New York City — that is to say, away from Big Ten country, a classification held by many, many Big Ten alums — and that makes it extremely unlikely we're gonna be able to watch this channel unless, of course, we (all together now) buy DirectTV. (We remind that New York City still doesn't have the NFL Network.)
This sort of extortion is bad enough when practiced by the NFL and Major League Baseball. But when one conference pulls this stunt, it seems potentially self-destructive. We'll always find a way to watch the NFL. Will we always find a way to watch an Indiana-Eastern Illinois game in early September? As sports evolve into purely television entities, we continue to find it strange just how many, for whatever reason, find it in their best long-term interest to reduce the number of people who can watch their games.