In a first for Mountaineer fans, IMG College, the multimedia rights partner of West Virginia University, and AudioNow, the world's leading call-to-listen platform, have announced a new way for listeners to connect to their favorite team. Through a simple mobile telephone call, fans can access live college football broadcasts on their phone and – for the first time through AudioMatch ™ -- synchronize the local radio call to the telecast.
This weekend, and for the rest of this season, WVU fans can dial 712.432.6998 and listen to live broadcasts on the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG. The service officially launches Saturday, October 19th when the Texas Tech Red Raiders visit the West Virginia University Mountaineers at Milan Puskar Stadium. Air time for the pre-game show on the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG will be 8:30 a.m. (ET) with kickoff at Noon ET with Tony Caridi, broadcaster for the Mountaineers since 1997.
In addition, and through a new proprietary application from AudioNow, called AudioMatch ™, fans can match and synchronize the radio broadcast with the telecast to listen to their favorite radio voice while watching the action on TV. By using two telephone keypad buttons, fans can adjust the timing of the radio call to match what they see on TV. During the week, fans can call the number to listen to recorded Mountaineer football games, as well as live weekday coaches shows.
WVU is the third IMG College property to launch with AudioNow this season, joining the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska.
"Mountaineer fans and alumni can now hear game day broadcasts through a simple telephone call," said Alexandra Moe, Director of Partnerships at AudioNow. "Our goal is to connect sports fans, wherever they are, to games they want to be a part of and with a new level of personalization."
The call-to-listen phone number incurs no extra charge and is the equivalent of making a standard mobile call. As data costs continue to rise on mobile devices and unlimited voice plans continue to proliferate, radio-by-phone is emerging as one of the most affordable ways in the United States for listeners to connect to their favorite broadcasters when they are away from the radio, television and Internet.
"IMG College is interested in bringing fans the audio broadcast of their favorite school teams through innovative technology complementing traditional terrestrial and emerging digital and streaming platforms," said David Shumate, Director of Audio Operations for IMG College. "We're thrilled to bring call-to-listen on AudioNow to Mountaineer fans this season."
Since college fans are extremely loyal to their local broadcast, IMG College believes AudioNow has the potential for expansion beyond the three pilot schools, Shumate added. "Across the IMG Audio Network this college football season, we have 25 announcers who have been calling their school's respective games for 25 years or more. That level of longevity results in extraordinary listener loyalty."