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Is the Pac-12 OK?
The conference is rich with wealth, academic brilliance, and historical powers but hasn’t produced a national champion since the 2004 USC Trojans. Its fans seem to know it, too: Sure they make more money than you and grill salmon during tailgates, but these very successful people seem perennially nervous to prove that they belong at the cookout. Especially in recent years. In my experience, Pac-12 fans are the most knowledgable of all college football fans—they kinda have to be, because their football is falling behind.
The Pac-12 is unlikely to break through in 2019, but it is one of the most interesting conferences, rebuilding with great coaches in new places working on interesting projects. And also Clay Helton.
Here’s 10 must-watch Pac-12 games worth staying up late for—and how to stream them.
A quick word about the Pac-12 Network
Pac-12 Network is your best option for streaming live events from the conference, with more than 850 live events on tap each year. That includes more than 30 football games, in addition to the Pac-12 Championship game, as well as 150-plus men’s basketball games and a truly staggering amount of Olympic sporting events. Pac-12 Network showcases the best matchups from the conference, while six regional-based Pac-12 channels focus on local games and events.
Pac-12 Network also has some standard programming, mostly devoted to college football, including The Pregame, Inside Pac-12 Football, and The Drive: Pac-12 Football. For those pressed for time, check out Football in 60, which replays the week’s previous Pac-12 games in highlight-reel form.
Pac-12 Network channels
- Pac-12 Arizona: Arizona and Arizona State
- Pac-12 Los Angeles: UCLA and USC
- Pac-12 Bay Area: California and Stanford
- Pac-12 Oregon: Oregon and Oregon State
- Pac-12 Washington: Washington and Washington Stage
- Pac-12 Mountain: Colorado and Utah
College football 2019 live stream
The following services offer a one-week free trial and carry ESPN and Fox.
1) Sling TV
- Sling TV pricing: $25-$40 per month (40% first month)
- Sling TV devices: Amazon Fire Stick and Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, Roku, Xbox One, Google Chromecast, Oculus Go, Microsoft Edge, and iOS and Android devices
- Sling TV local channels: NBC, Fox (check your local availability here)
Sling TV provides two base channel package options, each priced at $25 per month. Sling Orange includes three ESPN channels, while Sling Blue includes sports channels like NFL Network, FS1 and FS2, NBCSN, and local channels. If you’re Team “Why Not Both,” Sling Orange + Blue combines the two for just $40 per month. Sports Extra: Sling Blue ($10 per month) also includes NFL RedZone. None offers the Pac-12 Network.
Instead, you can add the Pac-12 Network as part of the Sports Extra package for Sling Orange ($5 per month) or Sports Extra for Sling Blue ($10 per month). The former features two channels of SEC Network while the latter boasts NFL RedZone. Go with whichever one makes more sense to you.
How to use AirTV with Sling
AirTV solves one of the Sling’s biggest problems: The inability to receive all of your local channels. By purchasing a basic AirTV for $79.99 or the AirTV Player for $119.99, you can merge those local channels into your Sling TV, (or on your mobile device if you have the basic AirTV). As the Daily Dot wrote in its AirTV review, “it’s practically magic.”
The basic AirTV is a dual-tuner streaming device, while the AirTV Player is basically an upgraded Chromecast that has Netflix preinstalled. You’ll still need to own an HD antenna because even though AirTV gets you access to your local channels, it doesn’t actually physically show them to you.
But AirTV—which has no monthly fee—serves to strengthen one of Sling’s biggest weaknesses compared to other live streaming services like Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV, and PlayStation Vue. All those services have plenty of local channels.
- Cost: $4.99 per month or $49.99 for 12 months
- Devices: Chromecast, Amazon Fire Stick and Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, Roku players and TV, Oculus Go, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Samsung smart TVs, and iOS and Android devices
ESPN+ is a subscription service that extends ESPN’s existing website and app, and it’s even essential for soccer fans, in particular, carrying all MLS matches not on ESPN or FS1, as well as Serie A+, USL, Copa America, and FA Cup matches. It encompasses other sporting events as well, including 20 exclusive UFC Fight Night events per year, 180 NHL games, at least one MLB game a day for every day of the season, and a cornucopia of college sports.
ESPN+ also features the network’s sports talk programming, and it features original series starting with the entire 30 for 30 catalog ESPN made its name on. It also unlocks more content and fewer ads on the ESPN site.
- Cost: $44.99-$79.99 per month (after a 7-day free trial)
- PlayStation Vue devices: PlayStation 3 and 4, Roku, Amazon Fire Stick and Fire TV, Google Chromecast, Kodi, iOS and Android devices
- PlayStation Vue local channels: NBC, Fox, ABC, CBS (enter your ZIP code here to check your availability)
PlayStation Vue is a fantastic option for fans who already own a PlayStation console, but this streaming platform is available on a variety of devices. ESPN and FS1 are part of the Core package of channels, and the options increase at the Elite and Ultra levels.
- Cost: $44.99 per month (after a 7-day free trial)
- Hulu devices: Roku, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire Stick and Fire TV, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Nintendo Switch, and iOS and Android devices
- Hulu local channels: ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, the CW (check your local availability here)
Hulu with Live TV includes sports programming among its offerings, including ESPN and FS1, and as a subscriber to the service, you’ll get free access to Hulu’s sizable on-demand library. (Check out the full list of Hulu Live TV channels.)
5) YouTube TV
- Cost: $50 per month (after a 7-day free trial)
- YouTube TV devices: Google Chromecast, Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, Xbox One, iOS and Android devices
- YouTube TV local channels: NBC, CBS, Fox, ABC, the CW (enter your ZIP code here to check your availability)
Pac-12 football 2019 schedule: 10 can’t-miss games
1) Oregon (No. 11) at Auburn (No. 16), 7:30pm ET | ABC
Credit to the Ducks and Tigers for having the stones to play a fellow contender early into the season. This one’s in Jerry World (Arlington, Texas’ now-10-year-old cauldron of capitalism where the Dallas Cowboys play), and it’ll have the sizzle of a January bowl game. We’ve all read about Justin Herbert, Oregon’s dynamic and big quarterback, but unless you live on the West Coast you may not have stayed up late enough to see how good he is.
2) Arizona State at (No. 18) Michigan State, Sept. 14, 4pm ET | Fox
Herman Edwards seems to be building a real program on coaching-up 3-star talent, playing defense, and running the ball. Seems an awful lot like Michigan State. The Sun Devils stunned Sparty last year out West—round 2 will say everything about Edwards’ 2019 prospects.
3) (No. 14) Utah at USC, Sept. 20, 9pm ET | Fox Sports 1
USC Coach Clay Helton is on the hot seat and an ugly result against a surprisingly dynamic Utah, which thrashed BYU in its rivalry opener in August, could shake up the staff before December.
4) (No. 11) Oregon at (No. 25) Stanford, Sept. 21 | TBD
This isn’t a Chip Kelly offense running into a brick wall and getting pounded by dust-raising backs like the Oregon vs. Stanford games of yesteryear that were heavy on guys like Toby Gerhart. This Oregon team is surprisingly stout—and this Stanford team, coming off a 9-4 campaign, airs it out behind QB K.J. Costello, who just might throw for 4,000 yards this year.
5) USC at (No. 13) Washington, Sept. 28 | TBD
If this isn’t the game that costs Helton his job…
6) USC at (No. 9) Notre Dame, Oct. 12, 7:30pm ET | NBC
…this will be.
7) (No. 11) Oregon at (No. 13) Washington, Oct. 19 | TBD
Chris Peterson, now in his sixth year leading the Huskies, has a quietly loaded team. QB Jacob Eason transferred from Georgia and gets to duel with next April’s likely No. 1 overall draft pick in Herbert. This could snowball into a Gameday matchup real quick.
8) (No. 23) WSU at (No. 11) Oregon, Oct. 26 | TBD
Mike Leach has the most fun team in the Pac-12 and neutral fans enjoyed the 11-2 ride in 2018. Can the high-scoring Cougars get better? They return 15 starters and if senior QB Anthony Gordon, which the Seattle Times notes is a City College of San Francisco transfer, plugs and plays, look for more pinball wizardry on the scoreboard.
9) (No. 14) Utah at (No. 13) Washington, Nov. 2 | TBD
Tyler Huntley, Utah’s senior QB, is simply put, a baller and Heisman sleeper. The dual-threat gunner will have every opportunity to crash the national conversation.
10) (No. 23) WSU at (No. 13) Washington, Nov. 29 | TBD
Do we have stakes here? We should. The Pac-12 in 2019 is a story about rebuilding programs with new guys in charge (Kevin Sumlin at Arizona, Edwards, Chip Kelly at UCLA); stuck-in-neutral powers looking for a way forward (Stanford, USC); and most of all, a four-team race between Washington, Washington State, Oregon, and Utah. It’s one that will be at a boiling point in late November.
- How to watch Pac-12 Network online
- How to stream ACC Network Extra
- How to watch SEC Network online
- How to stream the Big Ten Network
- Is ESPN+ actually worth it?
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Ramon Ramirez is the news director, and formerly the Dot's entertainment editor and evening editor. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, Grantland, Washington City Paper, Austin American-Statesman, and Austin Monitor.