TORONTO – The all-sports television network previously known as The Score is getting a makeover.
New owner Rogers Media says it will launch the revamped channel as Sportsnet 360 on July 1, providing 24-hour breaking news, scores, stats, highlights, and live events.
Programming will include WWE, FIBA basketball, and the Vanier Cup.
Scott Moore, president of broadcast at Rogers Media, says the station will also “become the home of the UFC” and have more Canadian university content, including the football championships leading up to the Vanier Cup.
It will also do more with championships in other sports and be “the destination for live news conference coverage.”
“With some of our other rights agreements, we have the ability to put things like NBA, Major League Baseball on to The Score,” he said Tuesday in an interview. “So there will be an enhancement of the overall schedule, understanding that we still have the condition of licence that we can only do 15-per-cent live-event sports in primetime.”
Moore said they’ll use the existing on-air talent from The Score and “add to it with new, young faces that will be the sportscasters of the future.”
Sportsnet 360 will also have a new logo, sets, animation package and enhanced ticker. Its colour scheme will incorporate both the red and blue from the existing Sportsnet family and the orange and blue of The Score.
Rogers made the announcement Tuesday as part of its 2013 Upfront presentation, in which it revealed its programming lineup for the 2013-14 fall and mid-season.
The media giant bought The Score Television Network Ltd. in August for $172-million. The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission approved the sale in April.
Rogers says extensive market research has identified the Sportsnet 360 target viewer as a “‘paint your face’ hard core sports expert that follows a wide range of sports (10+ sports), is a heavy consumer of sports media, and regularly plays fantasy sports.”
Sportsnet 360 will continue to operate out of the station’s downtown Toronto studio.
Rogers says other programming details will be unveiled in the coming weeks.
The Rogers sports lineup also includes Sportsnet (Ontario, East, West, Pacific), Sportsnet ONE, Sportsnet World, Sportsnet World Online, sportsnet.ca, Sportsnet 590 The FAN, Sportsnet 960 The FAN, and Sportsnet magazine.