By Phillip Swann
The TV Answer Man –@tvanswerman

NBC Sports has confirmed to The TV Answer Man that Peacock, the NBC-owned streaming service, will offer select Big Ten games in 4K this season. The 4K broadcasts will start with this Saturday’s noon (ET) matchup between East Carolina University and second-ranked Michigan. An NBC Sports spokesman did not reveal additional 4K games at this time. “Select Big Ten games on Peacock will be available in 4K throughout the season,” the spokesman said today.

NBC this season has the rights to Big Ten football games, including ‘Big Ten Saturday Night,’ an exclusive primetime broadcast of a Big Ten contest, plus some afternoon games featuring conference teams. Nine of the 15 Big Ten games on NBC will also be available on Peacock, the subscription streaming service with plans starting at $5.99 a month. The first NBC-produced Big Ten game will be a Peacock exclusive: The ECU-Michigan game on Saturday.

The news that Peacock or NBC will show some Big Ten games in 4K is a surprise. The network told us 11 days ago that there would be no 4K coverage of the Big Ten broadcasts. However, we asked NBC again this week after the episode description of the upcoming ECU-Michigan game included a 4K HDR (High Dynamic Range) tag. The NBC Sports spokesman today confirmed that the 4K tag was correct.

For Peacock, Saturday will mark the streamer’s second foray in live 4K sports streaming. The service this summer provided the entire 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in 4K, the first time it had done live sports in the format. We have asked NBC Sports if any Big Ten games will be available in 4K on other providers but have yet to receive a response. DIRECTV and YouTube TV carry home Notre Dame games broadcast by NBC in 4K.

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— Phillip Swann