It'd be pretty silly to argue that the creation of the Pac-12 Network won't be a huge boon for Pac-12 athletics, football included. However... does its inception come at a steep price for football fans who live outside of the Pac-12's primary geographical markets, at least for the foreseeable future?
As a die-hard duck fan living in Chicago, I believe I'm facing the prospect of actually seeing FEWER games this year, due entirely to the Pac-12 Network launch. Although Comcast has picked up the network in most markets west of the Rockies, it has declined to carry it throughout much of the Midwest, including Chicago (and it took a fair amount of digging to even find a straight answer from Pac-12/Comcast reps). In the past, all non-nationally televised games were available on the (holds nose) O-Zone... However, presumably because of newly minted network deal, O-Zone appears to be offering audio-only coverage for the entire season.
While the Pac-12 Network does offer live online feeds of games it covers, apparently it requires a customer login from a regional cable carrier that actually DOES carry the network. In other words: If you live in a market that has declined to carry P12N, you are completely shut out from even online coverage of these specific games.
Does anyone have a different read on the situation? Because after waiting 9 months for football season, the thought of not being able to see the entire season is awfully depressing.