The U.S. Soccer Federation has announced that Wednesday's 2015 U.S. Open Cup Final will air on ESPN2, WatchESPN, and Univision Deportes.
As the announcement states, this is the first time the competition's final will appear on an ESPN network since 1999.
Yesterday, Josh Hakala of thecup.us, the leading independent site for U.S. Open Cup happenings, found the final among ESPN2's listings. Jonathan Tannenwald was quick to refute the report, noting that, as of Thursday, the deal had not yet been finalized.
Yes, it's on the TV grid for ESPN2, but my understanding is that the deal isn't finalized yet and may be called off.— Jonathan Tannenwald (@thegoalkeeper) September 24, 2015
In recent years, Open Cup Final broadcast rights belonged to GOL TV, a channel available to only a blessed few.
The deal gives considerable exposure to a tournament that has been often overlooked by many within the U.S. soccer sphere, the federation itself serving as no exception. This is a step in the right direction for proponents of the U.S. Open Cup, who hope that it may one day attain the status associated with many other domestic cups around the world.