Packers, television stations reach deal

The Green Bay Packers have reached an agreement with WFRV-TV Channel 5 to carry preseason games and other Packers-related programming for the next three years.<p>

Under the agreement, which includes a major alliance with WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee, WFRV will carry preseason games not carried nationally. WBAY-TV Channel 2 had held the preseason TV rights for the past 37 years.

The Packers said the station would work with CBS and WTMJ-TV on the telecasts over an expanded eight-station network, using CBS network production and personnel. Viacom Television Stations Group, the parent company of CBS, owns WFRV.

WFRV-TV and WTMJ-TV will create a television studio in the Lambeau Field Atrium for the origination of regular on-site programming, including news, sports and/or weather, throughout the year.

The new broadcasting package will include:

– Televising, by CBS Sports and WFRV-TV in conjunction with Milwaukee's WTMJ-TV, Packers preseason games over an expanded, eight-station network throughout the state of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan, with CBS network production, personnel and the latest network quality technology;

– An informative half-hour show prior to each preseason game;

– A half-hour preview show during training camp;

– A new "Fifth Quarter" show Sunday nights during the regular season, originating from the Lambeau Field Atrium, that will include player guests;

– A half-hour holiday special highlighting the Packers' extensive and ongoing community relations efforts;

– Larry McCarren, WFRV-TV sports director and Packers Radio Network analyst, as well as WTMJ-TV personnel, will be involved in the telecasts.

In addition to WFRV-TV and WTMJ-TV, the games will be televised over WKOW/ABC, Madison, Wis.; WAOW/ABC, Wausau/Rhinelander, Wis.; WXOW/ABC, La Crosse, Wis.; WQOW/ABC, Eau Claire; WYOW/ABC, Eagle River, Wis.; and WJMN/CBS, Marquette, Mich.

"Our business is going through a dramatic change and this partnership gives us extremely strong programming at a key time," said Packers president Bob Harlan. "And with it, we feel that we will be able to present a telecast of superior quality and, with an expanded network, be able to reach many more Packers fans than we have in the past."

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