Versus Changes Name To NBC Sports Network
The name Versus in TV sports will be a thing of the past come January 2, 2012 as Comcast’s NBC Sports Group will announce that they are changing the name of the cable channel to NBC Sports Network. Hockey fans have said that the network did a nice job on the NHL but just had trouble finding it with some cable providers.
NBC Sports televises everything from Super Bowls to Olympics now allows NBC/Comcast, which recently beat back competing bids from ESPN and FOX to retain Olympic rights through 2020, to put almost all of its Olympic coverage under the peacock logo.
Since completing its takeover of NBC Universal, Comcast has been making its family of broadcast, cable and regional sports networks work together. That’s why viewers have seen NBC Sports talent such as Johnny Miller on sister network the Golf Channel and Versus showing Notre Dame and Triple Crown horse racing that used to air on NBC.
Versus initially launched as the Outdoor Life Network in 1995 and has seen the channel grown to roughly 70 million homes compared with more than 100 million for ESPN and ESPN2. Versus never developed into the legitimate national rival to ESPN that many viewers had envisioned and later lost its own website.
“This is more than just a name change for Versus,” NBC Sports Group boss Mark Lazarus said in a statement. “It’s a complete repositioning of the brand.”