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ESPN beefs up viewing options for college football championship game

ESPN Inc. is not making it easy for fans to choose the view they want of the College Football Playoff National Championship.

The Walt Disney Co.'s sports programmer will deliver 15 different linear and digital options of the contest between No. 1 LSU and No. 3 Clemson on Jan. 13.

The traditional broadcast on ESPN (US) will showcase views from pylon cams from the corners of both end zones, multiple vistas of the first-down line, and a host of virtual reality graphics.

On-the-field views will be captured by ref cams — a camera attached to the hat of an on-field official — as well as varied Skycast overhead views from multiple skycams.

The skycast and field pass feeds will be made available in 4K via Samsung QLED on Comcast Corp., Altice USA Inc. and DIRECTV platforms. Resolution from 4K standard is significantly higher than that of high-definition, with the former offering 3840 x 2160 pixels versus 1920 x 1080 pixels for the older technological standard.

Digitally, options on the ESPN app include the Skycast view from behind the offense on most plays; the All-22 camera, which shows all of the players in the same frame; Techcast, with up to a dozen views of any play; and Refcast, where a quartet of former officials assess the action from a regulatory perspective, so to speak.

The Megacast of Clemson's 44-16 rout of Alabama in last year's championship game averaged 25.28 million watchers across ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPNews, according to data from Nielsen Holdings PLC.