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Viewing options available

Aaron Steiner | Friday, November 10, 2006

While dorm residents and local cable subscribers won’t have direct television access to Saturday’s Notre Dame-Air Force football game, students will be able to watch their Fighting Irish take on the Falcons, both on or around campus.

Tomorrow’s game, which kicks off at 4 p.m., will be broadcasted by CSTV, a three-year-old college sports network that won’t be available on Comcast Cable in the South Bend area, despite the network’s “free preview” offer to cable and satellite providers this weekend.

Local satellite subscribers, however, will have access to CSTV this weekend. A Dish Network representative said all customers already have access to CSTV. Direct TV public relations manager Jade Ekstedt said that while some packages include CSTV already, Direct TV will make CSTV available to all subscribers during the “free preview” this weekend.

On campus, several groups have responded to the few options students have to watch the game. The Office of Student Activities has organized a gamewatch event that will take place at Stepan Center tomorrow, said Associate Director of Student Activities Ryan Willerton.

Legends of Notre Dame, with help from Student Activities and Lyons and Alumni Halls, will also hold a gamewatch beginning a half hour before kickoff, Legends general manager Aaron Perri said.

Willerton said Student Activities organized the events “given the demand for this game” and hopes to reach its 1,800-student capacity at the Stepan Center.

“We’re working with a satellite company out of Indiana,” Willerton said. “They will provide us with a one-time [deal].”

The Stepan doors will open at 3 p.m. and the game will be shown on a big screen with concert style seating, Willerton said.

He said Student Activities was pleased “to be able to come through in the clutch” this weekend.

Legends renewed its Direct TV subscription after learning that Comcast would not carry CSTV this weekend, Perri said.

The game will be shown on four televisions and a projection screen, as well as outside in a heated tent, Perri said – a larger event than a normal Legends gamewatch. He said they will be able to seat 800 students.

Area bars and pubs are also preparing for this weekend’s game broadcast. Establishments that will be able to show the game expect more business than usual.

“We have extra staff coming in,” said Jodi Thurspon, a manager at the Linebacker Lounge on South Bend Avenue.

Sarah VanDusan, an employee at Corby’s Irish Pub on Lasalle Avenue, said Corby’s will have the game via satellite and is “looking forward to the extra traffic.”

Both Buffalo Wild Wings locations on Grape Road and Washington Street will show the game. Casa del Rio and K’s Grill & Pub on South Bend Avenue will not show the game, nor will CJ’s Pub on North Michigan Street.

For fans that don’t want to bother with finding a location with satellite access, the game will be broadcast online, said CSTV spokesperson Leslie Ann Wade.

Viewers who sign up at UND.com or CSTV.com before Saturday’s game will pay $14.95, and those who sign up after the game begins will pay $19.95, Wade said.