Potential Guide to Watching CFB in High Quality WITHOUT Subscribing to Cable TV

Submitted by DrMGoBlue on August 24th, 2014 at 8:52 PM

I posted this elsewhere, but here it is for MGoBlog consumption:

Disclaimer: I have not done any of this myself. However, in theory this should work. Also, it is not free. I estimate it would cost ~ $300/yr, which is probably a lot less than your 12 monthly cable bills.

You will need 4 things:

1) Most importantly you will need a high-speed internet connection, which I assume many of you already have since you are on this website reading this right now.

2) You will need to purchase BTN2Go International, which is basically a service BTN offers to fans abroad to watch their live programming overseas. This costs $119.99 a year I believe but you will be able to watch all the football and basketball games BTN covers this year. This option is not available (normally) to people living and residing on the US (but we will go over how to work around this requirement.) Link: international.btn2go.com

3) You will need to purchase ESPN Player. It's basically the same thing as BTN2Go international except change 'BTN2Go' as you know it to 'WatchESPN'. With this you will be able to watch all of ESPN's live progamming online (however notably, you will not be able to watch ESPN on ABC events--more on that at the very end). I can't access the current pricing but I think I saw something older that it was $150 a year. link: espnplayer.com

4) The last thing you will need, which is what makes this whole thing work is Hotspot Shield Elite (link: www.hotspotshield.com/us). This is a nifty little program that will make your computer 'show' up in the UK, using a VPN. It's legal and costs $30/yr. You will only have to run this program when you plan to sit down and watch your beloved Wolverines play.

To summarize, if you did follow through with all this, you *should* be able to watch all of BTN's live sporting events, and all of the ESPN/ESPN2 events (including NBA, Monday Night Football, MLB on ESPN, etc.) For the ND game and the ABC on ESPN programming, I recommend you purchase a high quality antenna and watch normally on your TV. Also note that if you aleady live overseas, you just need to do steps 1-3 and you should be set.

If any of you actually take my advice and go through with all this, please report back. I suspect the results would be glorious and worth sharing with others.



August 24th, 2014 at 9:54 PM ^

That's my default setup. Sometimes there are still ads that block the stream though. In that case i use firefox with noscript. turn all scripts off, and enable only the website stream. Works well.


Also, this is my backup stream site. http://forum.wiziwig.eu/forums/33-NCAA


Used these tricks all last year. I moved and went for an internet/tv deal this year though. I'll watch through the season then switch back to internet only. Happy streaming. 


August 24th, 2014 at 10:24 PM ^

and to bluereign and goblue, but when you say, 'google chrome + ghostery',  i only have the vaguest clue about you're talking about and i have no clue about how to implement it.  i know, my bad, but there you have it.  i will show this to some of my children though, and they may be able to make it work.  



August 24th, 2014 at 11:44 PM ^

just do what they will do - type all the related words into Google. Or even your questions, such as "what is ghostery" or "how do I install ghostery." You aren't the only person with those questions, so they have been answered.


August 24th, 2014 at 11:35 PM ^

Had BTN2Go International last year and I won't be getting it again. The illegal streams are more dependable and usually better quality than BTN and ESPN. OP might want to try Hola unblocker instead of Hotspot Shield. It's free and I use it daily to watch stuff on geoblocked sites like Watch ESPN, BBC iPlayer, Hulu etc.. 


August 24th, 2014 at 9:03 PM ^

 I only gave the $300 figure as the yearly cost. If you broke it into 12 even payments of $25...I think you would you hard pressed to find cable for that much. Also this extends into most of the CBB stuff and some NFL, NBA, MLB, etc.


August 24th, 2014 at 9:50 PM ^

satellite, and the cheapest package including espn and btn is about $70/month. That however is only for 12 months, and then it goes over $100 for the last 12 months of the mandatory 2 year contract. Pretty steep when all I really want is 2 stinking channels out of 200. I guess I could go for 3 months and then pay $380 for an etf...pretty damn steep.


August 24th, 2014 at 9:07 PM ^

A really good location-spoof service is unotelly.com. The difference is that it is subscription (monthly @ $5) and it connects at higher speeds than a lot of other services. Using that you can also get NFL Gamepass, which is awesome.

Things like this are the best way to legally get access to all of your football needs.

Of course, you can always go the web-stream illegal route and get crappy picture and questionable service.


August 24th, 2014 at 10:07 PM ^

You're still paying for the services. Unotelly simply does a good job of convincing your computer it's in another country. Again, I'm not arguing whether or not it's MY preferred method, but for those who are looking for a way to subscribe without being in another country, this is it. Gamepass is $150-200/year. The aforementioned BTN2Go International will cost you, as well. I personally use whatever I can find, but since the OP was suggesting this route, I thought I'd suggest an alternative in the same vein.


August 25th, 2014 at 2:11 PM ^

so I wouldn't worry about that aspect of it.  I've often hacked into cable t.v. merely by doing so as a "technician" as provided by their s.o.p.  They have since changed.  They never prosecuted nor even threatened to do so because they are breaking real estate law by charging for air waves that do not belong to them

On every real estae transaction, you will receive a brief description of land, telling you the measurments, etc. What is not on there is the fact that you also own the air above as far as measurement can be determined. Such does not exist, of course, so you own it all.


August 24th, 2014 at 9:11 PM ^

That regardless of whether or not Hotspot Shield is legal, that it's a violation of the terms of service for BTN2go international to actually be located in a geographic area offering BTN on cable.

I'm not saying I care whether it's all technically legal or if Comcast gets screwed, I'm just saying the ethical rationalization is probably not actually accurate.


August 24th, 2014 at 9:12 PM ^

Why don't your just go to sports bar that has a subscription to all the college football gameday packages?  You can watch multiple games in HD for a lot less trouble.


August 24th, 2014 at 9:55 PM ^

I am guessing you are referring to Knoxville TN (as there are others). I am in Oak Ridge, I don't typically go out to watch the games, and have not asked about anyone carrying BTN to show those games. If you happen to find any let me know though!

Edit: reply fail, was meant to go to Scruffy.


August 24th, 2014 at 9:18 PM ^

I had always thought - just based on reading - that sites like HotspotShield has always had issues when being used behind a router, but perhaps they've overcome those things. I simply remember reading a little while back that some folks trying to use VPNs via an internal network were having a lot of compatability / connectivity issues (some of it was equipment-specific though). Just out of curiosity, is there a way to circumvent such things? 

I have to think some ISPs look for "oddball" DNS servers and the like too, but I don't know how diligent most companies tend to be.