Updated at 3:55 p.m.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Midco Sports Network and the University of North Dakota Athletics Department has announced that they have reached agreement on a five-year television contract. Midco Sports Network will broadcast a minimum of 40 live games, plus up to 40 weekly special shows per year of the contract.
"UND Athletics will be a significant asset to our sports network in driving viewership and sponsorship," said Midcontinent Communication's Vice President of Business Solutions Mark Powell. "In the growth and development of a sports network I can't think of a better school to be associated with than UND."
UND will also receive $1 million in rights fees over the length of the contract with live game broadcasts moving to high definition in the third year (2014-15) of the agreement.
"It allows us to continue our exceptional coverage in the region on Midcontinent and at the same time the department will benefit financially in a significant way," said University of North Dakota Director of Athletics Brian Faison. "We've been working hard to find new revenue streams for the program so this is a critical piece to add to the mix. We are also excited about the HD component of the contract."
Midco Sports Network will produce and broadcast up to 45 live games, plus up to 40 weekly special shows during the upcoming 2012-13 season. Those 45 games will include all home men's hockey games, five home football games, five home men's and women's basketball games, four home women's hockey games and three home volleyball matches.
A tentative broadcast schedule has been agreed to with a finalized schedule to be completed in July.
"It is phenomenal to add such a great selection of UND games and special programming to our broadcast schedule," said Powell. "We know the UND fans will be happy to get a chance to catch all these games on Midco Sports Net."
Midco Sports Network will partner with UND to include weekly shows featuring game analysis, interviews and reporting with several of the coaches of the University's athletic program.
"The weekly television show is important because it allows us to focus individual attention on our sports programs and our head coaches," said Faison. "It's been our strategy to promote all of our sports on both the weekly television show and our live game broadcasts."