Tonight’s basketball game only to be shown on ESPN U

By Kathleen Foody

Tonight’s Illinois men’s basketball game against the University of Michigan will only be televised by ESPN University, said Russ Hamilton, vice president general manager of WCIA.

The final game of the regular season has always been scheduled to appear on the cable television network, he said.

Hamilton said he attempted to buy back the game before the University’s announcement to retire Chief Illiniwek, last Friday.

“It had nothing to do with me speaking out,” he said. “I was just trying to help the community see the last home game of the year.”

Hamilton said he knew it was unlikely that ESPN would allow the station to show the game, but he tried again following the University’s announcement.

Hamilton estimated the station has received about 800 calls today from people wanting to know whether the game would be shown.

“Everyone believes we own every game Illinois has and that’s not the case,” he said.