ABC Sports, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN360's 2005-06 men's college basketball schedule will feature more than 475 games, including ESPNU's 144 games in the 24-hour college sports network's first full season of coverage.
This year's lineup will set a record for total coverage by the media outlets. Last year, the networks televised a previous high of 340 games.
ESPNU will offer the first nine nationally televised games of the season beginning with a doubleheader of the 2K Sports Coaches vs. Cancer Classic (both from Syracuse, N.Y.) Tuesday, Nov. 8: Cornell vs. St. Francis at 6 p.m. ET and Bethune-Cookman vs. Syracuse at 8 p.m.
The networks will combine to televise teams from all 31 Division I conferences, including coverage of at least 185 Division I and six Division II teams. ESPNU's schedule alone will feature 106 Division I and four Division II programs, including action from the ACC, BIG EAST, Big 12, Big Ten and SEC.
The schedule will include coverage of every team on ESPN.com and Dick Vitale's pre-season Top 25 lists.
ESPN360, ESPN's customized broadband service, which through high-speed connections, combines the best elements of television and the Internet, will present approximately 30 games, including exclusive coverage of two contests from the Guardians Classic, three from the Great Alaska Shootout and two Bracket Buster Saturday matchups.
ABC Sports' coverage will begin Saturday, Jan. 21 with regional coverage of Texas Tech at Oklahoma at 1 p.m. and California at Arizona at 6 p.m. Other highlights will include consecutive weekends of regional action: Charlotte at Wake Forest, Oklahoma State at Texas A&M and UCLA at Washington February 11 at 3:30 p.m. and North Carolina at Wake Forest and Texas at Oklahoma State February 19 at 1:30 p.m.
As part of a Martin Luther King Day celebration on Monday, Jan. 16, ESPNU and ESPN2 will combine to televise six games featuring teams from Historically Black College and University Conferences, including the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, Southwestern Athletic Conference and the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
The third game of ESPN's Big Monday Presented by Bud Light tripleheader will now feature either the West Coast Conference or Western Athletic Conference at midnight, joining the BIG EAST at 7 p.m. and Big 12 at 9 p.m. beginning Jan. 9.
Franchise programming includes the new Homecourt Advantage and the return of Feast Week Presented by Lowe's, Rivalry Week Presented by Cisco Systems, Judgment Week Presented by Cisco Systems, Bracket Buster Saturday and Championship Week Presented by 7UP. Special tournaments and events will include the addition of the Guardians Classic and the return of the 2K Sports Coaches vs. Cancer Classic, EA SPORTS Maui Invitational, Great Alaska Shootout, Big Ten/ACC Challenge Presented by Cisco Systems, Jimmy V Classic Presented by Siemens, Las Vegas Showdown, O'Reilly Auto Parts All-College Classic and NIT.
ESPN HD and ESPN2 HD, high definition simulcast services of ESPN and ESPN2, respectively, will feature more than 130 games in high definition.