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CBS Sports Network will be the broadcast home of Major League Rugby. Announced Tuesday, the exclusive multi-year deal will see 13 matches shown on CBS Sports Network, including 10 weeks of regular season coverage, highlighted by a game of the week, with two weeks of postseason coverage, including the semifinals and final.
“We look forward to being the television home of Major League Rugby,” said Dan Weinberg, Executive Vice President of Programming, CBS Sports. “MLR will showcase the speed, power and agility of this exciting sport and we are excited for the launch in April.”
“Partnering with CBS Sports Network is a great step for Major League Rugby and for the sport of rugby in America,” said Major League Rugby Commissioner, Dean Howes. “There is no question that rugby is growing fast in the U.S. market. A successful professional league is a critical component of that growth. Television partnerships are incredibly important to any professional league, and we are excited to chart a path to success together with CBS Sports Network.”
Tucked into the same announcement was the confirmation of a seventh team for the inaugural season. As reported by Rugby Today, San Diego is the late addition, joining the Austin Elite, Houston Sabercats, New Orleans Gold, Glendale Raptors, Utah Warriors and Seattle Seawolves.
It was also unveiled in the announcement that each team can bring in up to five international players.
With just 10 regular season matches being carried by CBS Sports Network at the pace of one a week, there will be several weeks where two matches aren’t shown on national television. Major League Rugby has said it will produce all of its games and make them available for viewing, with more details to come.