KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- It's one of the biggest college basketball rivalries in the nation -- the Sunflower Showdown between Kansas and Kansas State. But both Jayhawk and Wildcat fans agree that a metro cable service dropped the ball after technical problems left their televisions dark for the first half of the game.
Time Warner cable customers in Kansas City did not get to see the first half of the nationally-televised game on ESPN on Monday night after the cable provider lost the network's signal.
According to a Time Warner spokesperson, the company stopped receiving ESPN's satellite signal for unknown reasons, and they had no idea how to restore it during the first half of the game. In a statement released on Tuesday, Time Warner said this:
Last night, Time Warner Cable's receiver failed to respond to a change in satellite frequencies initiated by ESPN. Our engineers worked diligently to resolve the issue, and were able to restore service for the second half of the game. We continue to proactively test our equipment to prevent future outages. We understand the frustration of fans who missed the first half of the game, and we apologize for their disappointment.
During the first half of the game, all TWC video customers were still able to watch the game on their desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones via the "WatchESPN" app and WatchESPN.com, but we certainly understand the frustration of fans who could not watch the first half of the game on their televisions, and we apologize for their disappointment.
The Jayhawks won the game in Manhattan, beating the Wildcats 59-53.
For some metro viewers, the situation reminded them of last year's game between Kansas and Missouri in Columbia, when KCTV lost the signal with just minutes to go in the game, switching viewers to the Michigan-Michigan State game instead.
On the FOX 4 Morning Show Facebook page, one viewer summed up her feelings about the blackout as, "Ridiculous. I hate Time Warner. Biggest game in weeks and we get this as fans?"
According to the Kansas City Star, Time Warner said that cable subscribers could watch the game at ESPN3.com, in addition to a replay of the game at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday morning on ESPNU.