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Football Playoffs Telecast & Webcast Guidelines

Telecasting Flowchart

A telecast is defined as any live or tape-delayed video footage of a contest in its entirety that can be transmitted through television, Internet Web stream, Webcast, video podcast, smart phone apps, tablet computer apps, closed-circuit channels, weather cameras or any other medium.

During the UIL playoffs there may be opportunities for participating schools to have games telecast. Please find below important information concerning game telecasts for schools participating in the playoffs and schools that will host a playoff game. As outlined in the UIL Constitution and Contest Rules, the UIL owns the telecast rights for all UIL playoff games. FOX Sports Southwest has obtained the television and other telecast media rights, except for radio, from the UIL for all playoff games and will serve as the primary rights holder for those events. NFHS Network is the UIL’s secondary telecast partner and will have first choice each week to select any games not telecast by FOX Sports Southwest.

FOX Sports Southwest may sub-license the rights to telecast football playoff games (either live or tape-delayed) to media outlets in markets across Texas. FOX Sports Southwest must approve any entity that wishes to televise or webcast playoff games, live or tape-delayed. In order for a game to be telecast, it must be approved by Fox Sports Southwest by noon the Wednesday prior to the game each week of the playoffs. Approved sub-licensees should contact both schools and venue by the Wednesday before the game.

Approved sub-licensees will be charged on a sliding fee scale based on the following delineations:

  • Option One: Commercial streaming service providers that cover multiple school districts and linear TV stations

  • Option Two: Commercial broadcasters or streaming service providers who cover only one school or ISD exclusively throughout the season

The TV format for playoff games will mirror FOX Sports Southwest’s State Championship TV format so as not to interfere with the flow of the game:

  • Each school is encouraged to discuss with the media outlet prior to the game when TV timeouts should not occur.

  • TV timeouts will not be taken during any series of downs or after turnovers to avoid impacting or changing momentum and game flow.

  • TV timeouts will occur during halftime, during injury stoppages and after a score.

The sublicensed media outlets that partner with FOX Sports Southwest will be responsible for communication with the schools selected for telecasts. The sublicensed media outlet will schedule the set-up and tear-down times for their TV equipment with the schools and the venues. FOX Sports Southwest, NFHS Network, or FSSW sub-licensees are responsible for any expenses associated with the telecast.

Media outlets may not use a third-party web streaming service for live telecasts (i.e. Facebook Live, USTREAM, YouTube Live, etc.) Only one media outlet can telecast a game, except in cases where an over the air station and NFHS Network produce the same game side-by-side. NFHS Network and over the air television stations will be given priority. If more than one media outlet requests the streaming rights to a game, the UIL will select the preferred media outlet.

FOX Sports Southwest will have the ability to “cut-in” live to playoff games on its FOX Football Friday five-hour programming block, a show dedicated to high school football televised statewide. FOX Sports Southwest will also promote ticket sales during the playoffs for the UIL Football State Championships. Political announcements, cigarettes or other tobacco product, gambling services or venues, sexual service or adult entertainment venues, alcohol or firearms advertisements are prohibited during telecasts of any UIL activities.

School Produced Telecast Options

The UIL defines a school produced telecast as a broadcast with an educational purpose that is produced solely by a UIL-member school and/or school district primarily using school facilities, equipment, staff and students. If the telecast does not meet the requirements of a School Produced Telecast, the game must be sublicensed from FOX Sports Southwest.

Schools with student-media telecast teams or other school based telecast groups have two options for telecasts:

  1. NFHS Network School Broadcast Program Webcast
  2. Non-Commercial Academic Telecast

NFHS Network School Broadcast Program

Schools participating in the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program may request to webcast football playoff games live on the NFHS Network by submitting the Academic Playoff Telecast Request form. The request must be submitted by noon Wednesday in order to telecast that week’s playoff game. The School Broadcast Program must have permission from both schools involved in the contests and the venue if the contest takes place at a neutral site.

NFHS Network School Broadcast Program schools may produce a live playoff webcast with commercials if approved. Advertisements related to the following categories are prohibited: political announcements, cigarettes or other tobacco product, gambling services or venues, sexual services or adult entertainment values, alcohol, and firearms.

For more information on the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program and how to participate, please visit the NFHS website or contact Maggie Weeman or Mark King (contact info below).

Non-Commercial Academic Telecast

Schools not participating in the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program may request to do a non-commercial Academic Telecast. An Academic Telecast must meet the definition of a school produced telecast and must be without any commercial relationship for the financial benefit of another party (e.g. advertising, sponsorship, subscription).

Academic Telecasts may be aired on a local cable access channel, school website, or a school affiliated Facebook or YouTube Channel. All other commercial .com websites and social media channels are prohibited. 

Schools may request to do an Academic Telecast by submitting the Academic Playoff Telecast Request form. The request must be submitted by noon Wednesday in order to telecast that week’s playoff game.

Due to COVID-19 venue capacity restrictions, FOX Sports Southwest has lifted the one-hour tape-delay requirement for Academic Telecasts and is now allowing schools to broadcast their games live, if approved.

If you have any questions, please direct them to the following individuals:

Chris Quattlebaum – FOX Sports Southwest (for television station questions regarding access to games)

(903) 312-8197
chquattlebaum@sbgtv.com

Taimon Turner – FOX Sports Southwest (for television station questions regarding access to games)
trturner@sbgtv.com

UIL Media Department
pr@uiltexas.org

Maggie Weeman – NFHS Network School Broadcast Program Contact
(678) 447-3333
maggie.weeman@nfhsnetwork.com

Mark King – NFHS Network School Broadcast Program Contact
(901) 218-0583
mark.king@nfhsnetwork.com