Hardy OneNet will be dropping AT&T Sportsnet (formerly Root Sports) from channels 24 and 1024 in its channel lineup effective Jan. 1, 2022. AT&T Sportsnet continues to demand sizable cost increases for its content despite a significant loss in relevant West Virginia programming with the rise of streaming services. Hardy is not permitted to say exactly how much it pays per customer for AT&T Sportsnet, but regional sports networks typically are among the most expensive channels for TV providers.
In the past, AT&T Sportsnet usually would show several West Virginia University basketball games and a couple of WVU football games in a season. With the rise of ESPN+ and other streaming services, that has changed. According to WVU’s website, not one 2021-22 WVU men’s basketball game is scheduled to air on AT&T Sportsnet, while eight games are airing exclusively on ESPN+ (click HERE for details). The Oct. 30 WVU-Iowa State football game aired exclusively on ESPN+.
Despite this decline in its WVU programming, AT&T Sportsnet is asking for sizable cost INCREASES. OneNet is not allowed to offer this channel on a per-customer basis; cost increases would be forced on ALL customers in the channel tier.
For these reasons, OneNet has decided to drop AT&T Sportsnet effective Jan. 1, 2022. We apologize for any inconvenience. Hardy OneNet already charges our customers less for programming fees than what we pay content providers for those retransmission rights, meaning Hardy loses money on that portion of the business. In the wake of these changes with AT&T Sportsnet, we will evaluate our programming surcharge in relation to the 2022 increases we must pay to other providers and, if feasible, adjust it accordingly. Please stay tuned to our website for updates.