Options to watch football if you don't have cable
Have you cut the cord with your cable TV provider yet? If you’re a big sports fan – and really, who amongst us isn’t one – it might be time to consider non-cable options.
The rise of on-demand content providers such as Amazon, Google, iTunes and Netflix has increased the possibility of dumping traditional cable for newer, internet-based options. These providers are great if we want to binge watch shows such as “House of Cards,” but what can we do if we want to catch a big regular season game such as Alabama at Tennessee on Oct. 15?
Well, alternatives to traditional cable are increasing each year, and they happen to include legitimate options for live sports programming. Maybe one of the following suggestions will help you make an important decision regarding your sports-entertainment dollar.
A Dish Network subsidiary that was launched in February of 2015, Sling TV is a live streaming service that offers more than 20 TV channels – including ESPN, ESPN2, TBS, TNT, AMC – for $20 a month with no contract. You can also get ESPNU and SEC Network by adding the Sports Extra package for an additional $5 a month.
Unfortunately for Apple TV owners, Sling TV can’t be watched through an Apple TV device. Sling TV streams over the internet through devices such as Roku and Amazon Fire.
CBS All Access
Since CBS has the rights to SEC football games every Saturday during the fall, the network’s cord-cutting option called CBS All Access might be a viable choice. For $6 a month, you can have access to a library of CBS content that includes shows such as “The Big Bang Theory,” “Big Brother,” “2 Broke Girls,” “Criminal Minds” and “CSI: Miami.”
If you happen to live in one of CBS’ top markets, you can have access to the live, local broadcast of CBS, which means live sports but no NFL games for the time being, but that could change in time for this season, according to CBS CEO Les Moonves.
CBS’ live, local broadcast option is limited to top markets, so it might not be available in your city. You can check by going here.
CBS College Sports Live
CBS College Sports Live, a live streaming service starting at $9.95 per month or $99.95 for an annual subscription, might make some SEC games available via live audio or video stream. Alabama, Georgia, Missouri and Ole Miss may offer all games on College Sports Live.
CSL also offers access to more than 18,000 live college events and more than 50,000 on-demand clips. Check the broadcast schedule here to see what games will be available on the college football streaming service.
Sony’s streaming service does carry Fox Sports 1, Fox Sports and some Fox Sports regional networks. However, Vue is currently available in only seven U.S. cities (Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia and San Francisco), it requires that you own a PS3 or PS4 and it has a starting price point of $29.99 a month, which makes it an expensive streaming option.
Click here to see if Vue is available in your city.
ESPN3 is the network’s digital channel that provides access to a number of live college football games in many conferences as well as some replays of games aired on the main ESPN channels. The station also simulcasts games that appear on ABC.
You may be able to access ESPN3 for free through the WatchESPN app if your internet service is a participating provider.
You can still catch the major networks’ live broadcasts by sticking with the tried-and-true approach of hooking up an antenna. There are numerous options available for free HD-quality TV of major broadcast networks such as ABC, CBS and FOX. For more information on how to set up OTA HDTV, click here and here.