This season, and for the next four, CPTV will pay an average of about $800,000 annually to the university for the right to broadcast about 20 women's games per year. It's a bargain for CPTV. Franklin estimates that nearly a third of the 52,000 CPTV subscribers, who pay an average of $60 per year, are on board only because of women's basketball.
On game days for both teams, every ticket is sold, but the women's squad reserves seats for Emeka Okafor & Co. (who occasionally attend) and the men's team reserves seats for the half-dozen or so women players who show up regularly. For the folks in the UConn athletic department, the insatiable appetite for basketball tickets is a nice problem. Having seen basketball transform their school, they're on to the next thing: UConn football, which was 9-3 this past season, its second in Division I-A. Supporters of the program say that the Huskies were the best team not to get a bowl bid. They're calling all Nutmeggers to come out and watch. After all, what's there to do in Connecticut before basketball season tips off?