Inside Carolina will have an exclusive television arrangement with NBC-17, with Inside Carolina reporters appearing on the station to share their insights. NBC-17 also will post Inside Carolina stories on nbc17.com.
The plan unites and strengthens two of the Triangle's growing media outlets. Greg Barnes, who covers the University of North Carolina for Inside Carolina, appeared last Wednesday night on NBC-17's 7 p.m. news show to discuss college football Signing Day and will next appear on the 7 p.m. news on Tuesday to preview the UNC-Duke matchup.
Inside Carolina has become one of the market's dominant voices in sports, with its focus on basketball and football at UNC. The website, which is entirely independent of the school, is the most successful college sports website in the country and focuses on strong journalism on a digital platform.
Inside Carolina routinely breaks stories on the Tar Heels beat and is the only outlet to send a reporter and photographer to all of UNC's road games.
With the in-depth reporting from Barnes and the rest of staff, and the editorial oversight of Ben Sherman, the site has become a model for how to succeed on the web and a must-read for Carolina fans.
"Over the last two decades, Inside Carolina established its foothold in the industry and has now emerged as the leading media outlet covering UNC sports," said Buck Sanders, president of Inside Carolina. "In recent years, Ben and I have prioritized expanding Inside Carolina's platform, and multimedia factors heavily into that focus. We recognized the quality of coverage provided by NBC-17, which made them natural partners in our growing multimedia efforts.
"This relationship will allow their viewers to see and hear more than just the headlines about North Carolina basketball and football, to get behind the curtain, and allows Inside Carolina to expand its visibility in the Triangle in a new way. This is a unique partnership that crosses the staid borders that have existed between traditional media and the digital space, and we're excited to be a part of that."
NBC-17, under Director of Content Andrea Parquet-Taylor, has expanded its audience with a focus on smart, in-depth stories centered on the local market. NBC-17's numbers have risen both in television and online.
"We are committed to what people hold dear in this community, and a big part of that is sports," Parquet-Taylor said.
She noted that while NBC-17 is excited about the new partnership, the station will continue to cover N.C. State, Duke, East Carolina and other schools of interest to the local fans fully and fairly.
NBC-17 has news shows in the mornings from 4:30 a.m. until 7 a.m., as well as 6, 7 and 11 p.m. The station is also expanding, adding reporters as its audience grows.
The move with Inside Carolina continues NBC-17's expansion into sports. The station debuted a successful high school football show last fall, "Friday Night Blitz," which was a hit with fans and advertisers.
NBC-17 is also the area's home station for the Super Bowl and Olympics in 2012.
Anchor Penn Holderness, reporter Todd Gibson and web manager Dane Huffman all have extensive sports experience.
"Inside Carolina is a great partner for NBC-17," Huffman said. "Both places love to be innovative and are at the forefront of how audiences now get their news. And both outlets feature reporters who refuse to settle for routine answers and want to get to the bottom of what's going on.
"We want to be fresh and informative and have found an excellent partner in Inside Carolina."