BIG TEN NETWORK HASSLE LIKELY TO BE SOLVED SOON

     Big Ten officials are confirming today's Chicago Tribune story that the conference and Comcast are about to announce a deal.  A few minor details are to be worked out and each conference school has been asked not to comment publicly until a full announcement is made.  Apparently Comcast subscribers would get the Big Ten Network on their expanded basic package and pay approximately 70 to 80 cents per month more for the service.  If the deal is announced the other few remaining cable services likely will fall in line and carry the Big Ten games.  That should spawn other conference networks who will have learned what to do since the Big Ten Network launched to plenty of controversy ten months ago with many people left unable to watch their favorite games.

     And the money for each conference school will still be sizeable-- a reported $6.1 million per year per school.  Michigan State officials are tight lipped but convinced a deal is about to be concluded and subsequently announced.

     The Buick Open begins a week from Thursday at Warwick Hills in Grand Blanc-- and officials must be nervous about Tiger Woods' availability.  His knee is a problem as the world knows.  He might well pull out even though he is scheduled to host a clinic at Comerica Park a week from tomorrow.  The Buick people did announce Monday that fan favorite John Daly will be in the field for the eighth time.  Daly's best finish on tour last year was a 16th place finish at the Buick.

     Michigan State's Kobs Field will have its new grandstands in place by next spring and a Monday meeting was held to organize construction plans and immediate work.  A private $4 million donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, at least for the time being, provided the money to get the project completed.  Lights are due to be added in time for the 2010 season and then Michigan State will have to decide whether it's worth it to keep playing games at Oldsmobile Park.  That likely will be the case at least next season because lights are needed at times and MSU has a good relationship with the Lugnuts.

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