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Looking Back: ESPN Broadcasts Northwoods League Games

In 2007, the Northwoods League broke new ground for a summer collegiate league, entering into a deal with sports broadcast leader ESPN to televise NWL games nationally on ESPNU, which had been launched just two years earlier. In addition to broadcasting select regular-season games and the All-Star Game, eleven 30-minute episodes of “Northwoods Baseball Weekly” also aired to a national audience.

It was unprecedented at the time for a summer collegiate league to have regular-season games nationally broadcast. Paired with the weekly show, the exposure helped raise the already growing profile of the Northwoods League and was the precursor to the current 4-camera HD webcasting and TV studio that continues to set the Northwoods League apart from other summer collegiate leagues.

Additional Notes About the ESPN Partnership:

  • The broadcast team for the League’s games was Clay Matvick (a St. Cloud State graduate who is still with ESPN as a play-by-play announcer) and Keith Moreland (former MLB-player who also spent three seasons as the Chicago Cubs color analyst on their radio broadcasts).
  • The first game was broadcast on June 14, 2007, from Madison, WI. (Click to read local news coverage about broadcast)
  • Other 2007 broadcasts included that season’s All-Star Game from Mankato, MN, and an August 2 contest from Battle Creek, MI. It was the Battle Creek Bombers inaugural season and for that game a season-high 4,087 fans packed the stadium to be a part of the national broadcast.

Archive article from Battle Creek Enquirer, August 3, 2007

 

Visit our 25th Season Celebration page to read about other memorable moments previously released.