All Presbyterian College football, men's basketball and select baseball and softball games are broadcast on i91.9 WKRI-FM and live streamed on GoBlueHose.com. WKRI recently acquired WKMH out of Saluda, S.C., and WKBR out of Summerville, S.C., giving the station an expanded footprint in South Carolina and Georgia.
"I'm excited about the expansion," said Presbyterian College Director of Athletics Brian Reese. "The change from an AM to an FM station with such a strong signal was a huge asset for us in branding PC athletics. The addition of the Saluda station and eventually the Summerville station will increase our footprint even more. It is a perfect fit for what we are trying to do. Our sponsors are excited about the increase in coverage as well. This is a step in the right direction."
Counties covered by WKMH 88.7 FM, which will go on the air at noon this afternoon, include all of Saluda, Edgefield, Aiken, Richmond and Augusta, Ga. The addition will also bolster a larger of area in Lincoln, Ga., McCormick, Greenwood, Newberry and parts of Laurens and Lexington counties.
WKBR 88.9 FM, which will begin broadcasting in late November, covers the city of Summerville and the great Dorchester counties as well as parts of Charleston.
WKRI-FM is a non-commercial educational (NCE) FM station that broadcasts beach and classic oldies from the 50s, 60s, 70s and early 80s.
With the addition of WKMH, the broadcast can be heard in most of western South Carolina and eastern Georgia, as well as the I-26 and I-85 corridors which include the cities of Abbeville, Aiken, Anderson Clinton, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick and Newberry, as well as of Greenville, Spartanburg, Edgefield, Lexington, Saluda and Union Counties. That represents a market of over a million potential listeners.
Listeners in Richmond, Columbia and Lincoln counties in Georgia will also hear all the Blue Hose football and basketball action.
Starting in 2013-14, the Big South Conference officially re-launched www.BigSouthSports.com, which now fully integrates the Conference website and the Big South Network (BSN) as part of a joint venture between the Conference office and Webstream Sports. In addition, the BSN -- the Conference’s online video channel presented by corporate partner State Farm, is no longer a subscription service and all live and on-demand events can be viewed for free.
The dynamic redesign of the site and video service offers all visitors a “one size fits all” experience, one that can be seen through the web browsers of phones, tablets, laptops or desktops that adapt to best fit the desired display -- all major platforms are supported. In addition to the new look, the site features simpler navigation as well as an instant click to launch the Big South Network’s free live and on-demand offerings of the more than 900 events the Big South Conference and its member institutions have produced annually.
Webstream Sports, in conjunction with Indianapolis-based TGFI, hosts the fully integrated website and digital network. In addition, Webstream Sports will produce a minimum 50 Big South events covering every Conference team sport -- football, men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, softball, baseball and women’s lacrosse -- exclusively for ESPN3 in high-definition.
Viewership for the Big South Network increased annually under the previous subscription model, and now with free access for all video products, the Conference expects immediate growth. Big South corporate partner Hardee's is also a contributing partner to the BSN's new free viewing format.
“The Big South Conference has been a leader in the digital space ever since the inception of the Big South Network in 2005,” said Big South Commissioner Kyle B. Kallander. “This next generation of the BSN keeps us at the forefront in the industry in providing quality programming anytime and everywhere. We are very excited to air the 900+ annual live events that showcase our talented student-athletes on the BSN for free and on any device. We are also looking forward to our long-term partnership with WebStream Sports and TGFI, two recognized leaders in the digital industry.”
The new site, developed by TGFI, will continue to deliver the high level of information fans have come to expect, including news releases, statistics, schedules, standings, and Championship details, as well as the Big South Online Merchandise Store. New social media integration -- featuring quick access points to the Big South’s Twitter and Facebook feeds -- are emphasized as well. A new component allows tailored Twitter feeds running alongside Big South Network video and buttons allowing fans to share site content directly into their own Facebook or Twitter accounts. Additional enhancements include:
•Newswire featuring links to third-party coverage of the Conference and its members
•Schedule and results widget with links to live video/audio and statistical coverage
•On Demand video library featuring embeddable Conference and member-produced content for third-party sites
•Advanced statistical information derived from Stat Crew data files with capability for user to sort multiple data fields
•SMS alert functionality
“WebStream Sports has teamed up with TGFI to deliver a single-destination, multi-media platform that enables the Big South Conference, its member institutions, the student-athletes and the fans to consume live and on-demand video and editorial content on multiple devices,” added Greg Weitekamp, President and Partner of WebStream Sports. “As a company, we are thrilled to partner with the Big South in an effort to highlight the accomplishments of its student-athletes through the Big South Network and ESPN3.”