Marquee Sports Network Debuts Today, Cubs Fan Backlash Strengthens


We’re just hours away now from the start of the Chicago Cubs exhibition season, so you now what that means? Time to like cable carriage fees! And broadcasting license agreements! All that fun stuff that Cubs fans typically associate with the start of spring training games.

We’re joking of course, but this is the world we live in, as Marquee Sports Network commences broadcasting, mere minutes from now. As it stands, Marquee Sports Network STILL has no deal in place with Comcast or Xfinity, and that’s just the start of a long list of service providers who have not reached agreement with MSN. It’s easier and shorter to just run through the list of who is hooked up at this point. And for convenience, here is where you can get Marquee, if any of these are your service provider.

DIRECTV (channel 664)
AT&T U-verse in SD (channel 740) and HD (channel 1740)
RCN (channels 377 and 679 (HD))
MetroNet (channel 29)
TVision (channel 100)

Also, streaming wise, Hulu+Live TV will have it, according to the press release “in the near future,” whatever that means. Additionally, just an FYI, here is the programming schedule for day one of Marquee Sports Network:

1 p.m. CST – Marquee Debut

2 p.m. CST – Cubs Countdown: All-Time Games

3 p.m. CST – Best of 2020 Cubs Convention

4 p.m. CST – Best of Cubs YouTube

4:30 p.m. CST — Marquee Sports Network Films Presents: More Than Mr. Cub: The Life of Ernie Banks

6 p.m. CST – Marquee Debut

7 p.m. CST – Cubs Spring Training game versus Oakland Athletics LIVE from Mesa, Arizona

10 p.m. CST – Cubs Countdown: All-Time Games

11 p.m. CST – Cubs Spring Training game versus Oakland Athletics from Mesa, Arizona (replay)

Crane Kenney asked, without a hint of irony, or at least so it appeared, “what do you have against Marquee Sports Network?” to the booing crowd at Cubs Convention a month ago. Well, it’s pretty simple, no one wants to pay for something that they used to get for free.

Change is always unpopular and if these people do decide they’re willing to pay for this, they don’t like the anxiety of being unsure they’ll have that option. Beyond that, when you try to tell angry consumers that this new endeavor, which benefits you but screws over them, is actually great for them, well, how do you think they’ll react?


This is exhibit A to just how out of touch the Ricketts family and the front office truly is. Spring training games are here, and a large number of Cubs fans still have no access to watching the games.

It’s a cataclysmic failure, and you better get it sorted out by opening day. The clock is ticking. So with that said, let’s look at some of the more insightful and colorful tweets about Marquee Sports Network lately.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC and Chicago on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link

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  1. […] worst new product launch in memory”, wrote Robert Feder Monday. Paul M. Banks of SportsBank called the launch “a cataclysmic failure”. The Chicago Tribune’s Phil Rosenthal, who himself had to […]

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