NCAA returns to ABSCBN with ten-year partnership deal

By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--The country's oldest collegiate sports league is coming home!

The NCAA officially kicked off its countdown to its 91st season by formally agreeing on a ten-year broadcasting rights deal with ABSCBN on Monday at the Restaurant 9501 inside the ELJ Center in the TV station's compound.

Officials of the NCAA led by president Reynaldo Vea of host school Mapua and ABSCBN led by president Charo Concio attended the said contract signing event that formally renewed their partnership.

ABSCBN started broadcasting NCAA games in 2002, but its previous partnership ended in 2012 when the league decided to ink a three-year TV deal with TV5.

The new partnership will have ABSCBN, through its UHF channel ABSCBN Sports and Action, broadcasting the entire men's basketball season, which will start on June 27, and the women's volleyball playoffs, which will take place early next year. The network will also give highlights of the other events.

After the opening day doubleheader which will feature the Mapua-San Beda and Arellano-JRU games, ABSCBN Sports and Action will air live matches every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.