May 23, 2024

California Baptist University is in the third year of its four-year transition period to classification as an NCAA Division-I athletics program. Popularizing CBU on the national stage is an essential part of fulfilling the athletics department’s goal of glorifying God through excellence in athletics.

Lancer athletic events will now be distributed to a wider audience, as part of a new broadcast deal that CBU and the Western Athletic Conference have signed with ESPN, the premier sports broadcast network in the country.

“The continued relationship with ESPN is key to our future success in growing CBU into a national brand,” said Tyler Mariucci, director of Athletics, in a press release. “This expanded partnership between the WAC and ESPN will enhance the viewing experience for Lancer Nation and expand the visibility of our programs through the worldwide leader in sports.”

The press release also explained the specifics of the deal as it pertains to CBU athletic events. ESPN will air all home men’s and women’s basketball games, along with releasing more than 70 championship events on ESPN+. CBU Athletics will stream baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, softball and volleyball on ESPN+, as well.

Students across campus are excited to be able to view CBU athletic events on one of the biggest sports broadcasting platforms available.

“The fact that CBU’s athletic events and marketing are primarily being distributed on ESPN is a great move,” said Samuel Nguyen, junior applied theology major. “It demonstrates that CBU is part of the big leagues. This makes me increasingly glad to be a part of such a great school.”

Broadcasting CBU athletic events through ESPN elevates the status of Lancer athletic events. It brings more attention to CBU than ever before and helps with marketing CBU to the local community. Raising awareness is crucial to helping CBU Athletics succeed as an NCAA Division-I school.

“I think it’s a wonderful opportunity for our university since it’ll expose us to a wider audience and it’ll get a lot of people hooked on Lancer athletics,” said Marc Lemieux, first-year graduate student in forensic psychology.

As CBU transitions into Division I, it is working to popularize Lancer athletics not only among the surrounding community but also on a national scale.

“ESPN is on almost every TV I’m near,” Lemieux said. “It’ll make it easier for me to watch CBU games.”

The ESPN deal helps to popularize all WAC schools, including CBU. 

Bringing national attention to the newly expanded WAC will help elevate CBU and all WAC-member schools on the national level. It can also bring attention to new WAC sports, such as football (which CBU does not sponsor).

“The WAC and ESPN have a long history together, and it’s exciting to continue that relationship into the future,” said Jeff Hurd, WAC commissioner, in CBU athletics’ press release. “ESPN remains the gold standard when it comes to sports, and this multi-year agreement will continue to assist in the WAC’s growth nationally.”

Lancer fans can tune in to ESPN to see their favorite CBU sports teams compete for the glory of God and for the betterment of CBU athletics soon.

Details on specific athletic events will be released by CBU athletics when appropriate. Lancer fans can look forward to seeing CBU athletics events on ESPN. 

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