Top-ranked Nebraska opens its season on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. CDT, hosting Silicon Valley's own San Jose State. Don't look for the Big Red on the small screen, though. Fans from Wahoo to Yahoo! are being advised that unless they have a ticket at Memorial Stadium—site of 234 consecutive sellouts—the only way to watch this game will be online. "When we found out that nobody wanted us on TV," says Chris Anderson, a spokeswoman for the Huskers, who as members of the Big 12 share in TV contracts with ABC and Fox Sports Net, "we decided to be cutting edge."
The almost certainly forgettable afternoon on the field (the Spartans were 3-7 last year) will thus be remembered as the first video Webcast of a Division I-A football game by a major sports site. Internet users across the planet need only to log on to either foxsports.com or huskers.com. Pictures from six cameras will be supplemented by the call of Nebraska announcers Warren Swain (play-by-play) and Adrian Fiala (analysis). To download the images, you need either of two plug-ins: RealPlayer for modem speeds of 56K and up, or Quicktime. "We've had a lot of success with our Internet radio broadcasts already," says Anderson, noting that the Huskers normally receive hits from approximately 25 countries during their radio Webcasts. "We're hoping for about half a million page views this time around."