I feel like I write this post every year thinking “After this Iowa football season, I’m going to cancel my Mediacom subscription.”
And yet, I’ve lied to myself. Again. I continue to pay an obscene amount of money to Mediacom in order to be right on time for my great tweets from the BHGP Twitter account during Iowa sports.
But a lot of people are smarter than me. Or are at least, looking to be smarter than me by paying a cheaper (but is it though?) rate than I do and stream your sports in 2021. As far as streaming goes for this season of Iowa football, and options to watch, thankfully nothing much has changed...except for the prices.
As we’ll see from our handy chart from CableTV.com, all our major players for best streaming services for sports are the same, but the prices for most have gone up since last year:
Prices aside, that’s all fine and dandy...but what channels are you going to get from this? For football, the channels you’ll need are pretty cut and dry. FOX owns the Big Ten Network now, and ESPN/ABC are pretty much staples of most packages, but who gives you what, and at what price tier is where things get tricky/annoying. Luckily, CNET keeps us updated with a nice comparison article that’s constantly updated with what channels are offered across what services.
Since this is technically just a football article, let’s stick with that for now. Our networks we know we need at the moment are the Big Ten Network (especially for Week 1 against Indiana), ABC, Fox, and Fox Sports 1. ESPN will surely pop in at some point too, probably for a few 2:30 games, but who knows. So let’s check the list, starting with the big stations:
Ok, our top options from above, Fubo, Sling, Hulu, YouTube and AT&T TV are all covered here, in various ways, save Sling for ABC. How about the Big Ten Network?
Get with it, Sling TV. You’re losing us fast. ESPN? FS1/2?
Hulu and YouTube TV are looking pretty strong right now. That’s what I’d be picking anyway, and that’s what a lot of you seemed to choose from when I wrote this post last year (some good insights in the comments there if you are looking for a more nitty-gritty breakdown). Essentially, if you take your pick between those two, you’re good. Things get a little more tricky when it comes time for basketball season if you’re truly trying to watch every game, but that even can sometimes go beyond the realm of big name TV streaming services (hello, non-conference games that are only streamable on your laptop in 720p).
So, the TL;DR here: if you’re looking to stream Iowa football, Hulu with Live TV for $65/71 a month or Youtube TV for $65 are your best bet.
Take your pick between those two with cloud storage, what works with your TV/streaming device, brand loyalty, whatever it is, you should be happy...until you are scrolling through Twitter on gameday and I spoil a Tyler Goodson touchdown with a misspelled all-caps tweet because I’m watching with cable (and probably poorer than you for it), but that’s your decision.
Happy cord-cutting and viewing, folks!