Big Ten Network (BTN) is a cable sports network available on six live TV streaming services.
You can jump down to the summary of how to watch Big Ten Network without cable, or read through all your options.
College basketball and football fans following the Big Ten Conference can sometimes catch games and tournaments on local broadcast channels for free by using a TV antenna.
How to Watch Big Ten Network
It’s time for you to learn how to cut the cord if you’re a college football or basketball fan.
Why? Because Comcast has had an on-again, off-again relationship with BTN. A few years ago, Big Ten Network was dropped across 29 states from Comcast’s basic cable package.
You may also remember the channel blackout scare that happened on the eve of college football season.
Big Ten Network used to be a staple of cable TV, but now you don’t need Comcast (Xfinity), or Spectrum to watch college football or basketball.
That’s because there are a number of ways to watch BTN and pay less than you are now. You don’t have to sacrifice by missing live games or original programming covering the Big Ten Conference. Aside from basketball and football, Big Ten Network covers tennis, baseball, and ice hockey. You can find cross country, and gymnastics events too.
If you are a college sports fan in search of your ideal streaming service that streams Big Ten Network, chances are you want other sports channels too.
This guide will quickly show you how to live stream Big Ten Network without cable no matter where you live in the United States.
You can use a Smart TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Android TV devices such as Google Chromecast with Google TV to watch these live TV streaming services. You can use an iPad, iPhone and even game consoles such as Xbox or PlayStation to watch TV.
Subscribers to a number of live TV streaming services have the extra perk of activating the BTN TV app or the FOX Sports app, which carries a live stream of BTN.
All of these live TV streaming services have no contracts. Subscribers can cancel online anytime.
Subscribers get more than 105 channels, unlimited Cloud DVR to record games and 40,000 on-demand movies and shows. Subscribers can watch live TV channels on up to 20 screens at once. The Choice plan costs $99.99 per month.
Subscribers can get three months of Max, Cinemax, Showtime, STARZ, and MGM+ for free before the monthly rates kick in.
The Ultimate package has more than 140 channels, including locals, and sports channels such as NHL Network. The Ultimate package is $109.99 per month.
The Premier Package has over 150 channels, including premium channels such as Max, Cinemax and Showtime. A subscription is $154.99 per month.
You can sign up for a free 5-day trial without any obligations.
There are no contracts. You can subscribe month to month and cancel whenever you want.
DIRECTV STREAM works on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Smart TVs running on Android TV and Google TV.
You can look over the different channel lineups before deciding whether to sign up.
Fubo (formerly fuboTV) has all the channels you will need to watch Big 10 football and basketball.
fubo offers three plans with Big Ten Network. fubo Pro, Elite and Premium.
The Pro channel package has 152 channels, including news, entertainment and local ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX stations.
There are entertainment channels like A&E, Bravo, FX, two Hallmark channels and National Geographic. The Weather Channel and FOX News are among 152 channels in its lineup.
A subscription costs $74.99 per month. There’s a free 7-day trial for new customers.
There is 1,000 hours of Cloud DVR, and you don’t even need to rely on that to record games. fubo has “lookback”, an on-demand feature for sporting events that aired in the last 72 hours.
The Elite plan is $84.99 per month, and has 65 more sports, news and entertainment channels. The Premier plan has 231 channels, including Showtime, for $94.99 per month
Subscribers can watch live TV on three screens at once.
fubo adds a regional sports fee. It costs $10.99 per month for one regional network. It’s $13.99 per month if you have two RSNs in your area. You can look over fubo’s channels to see what locals and regional sports networks are available in your area.
With a fubo subscription, you can activate the BTN TV app for live streams of college football games outside of your home. There are about 39 apps that you can sign into total on your streaming device or smartphone.
If you own a 4K TV, then take note: fubo is the only streaming service that live streams select sporting events in 4K HDR.
fubo has its own app for live streaming on Smart TVs, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Fire Sticks, Apple TV and Android TV devices like NVIDIA Shield TV. You can also live stream Big Ten Network on your iPhone and Android smartphone using the fubo mobile app.
Hulu Live TV
Hulu Live TV has over 75 live TV channels, including ESPN, Big Ten Network, ESPN College Extra, CBS Sports Network and SEC Network.
You can watch live TV on up to two screens at once.
Hulu with Live TV comes with unlimited Cloud DVR storage so you can record sports, news, movies or whatever else you want. Hulu carries local ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC across the U.S.
A subscription costs $69.99 per month, and includes Disney+ and ESPN+. With a Hulu Live TV subscription, you can activate the ESPN app and unlock all live sports on ESPN Plus.
So you’re getting more than just live TV channels to watch.
Hulu has local NBC, ABC and FOX stations across the U.S. Hulu no longer offers a free trial for live TV, but you can look over the channel lineup before deciding whether to sign up.
Sling TV is now the cheapest option for watching Big Ten Network at $51 per month.
Big Ten Network is on Sling TV’s Sports Extra bundle when you subscribe to the Blue package.
Sling TV can be a good option if you already use a TV antenna or have another way to get local channels that carry NFL games.
A subscription to Sling Blue costs $40 per month and carries 45+ channels including NFL Network. Sports Extra is an extra add-on bundle that costs another $11 per month.
Sling Blue subscribers can watch live TV on three screens at once.
Sports Extra carries 12 channels, NFL RedZone, FS2 and PAC 12 Network.
SEC Network, Big Ten Network, Longhorn Network, ACC Network, ACC Network Extra, bein Sports, ESPNU and ESPNews are some of the key channels on Sports Extra that carry college football.
If you plan on signing up for an entire season of Big 10 football, you might want to prepay for a couple of months and get a free streaming device instead.
Vidgo lets you live stream NFL games on three different plans.
The Vidgo Plus plan is $69.99 per month, and comes with 110 channels, including ESPN and NFL Network. Local ABC and FOX channels are available in a number of markets across the U.S.
The Premium package adds 40 more channels, and costs $84.99 per month. The Ultimate plan has more than 200 channels, and has all 45 Spanish-language channels.
Vidgo works on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and iPhone. You can look over the channel packages before deciding whether to sign up.
YouTube TV has 128 channels, including ESPN, NFL Network, and local ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC stations for $72.99 per month.
YouTube TV only has one base plan, but now offers an option for NFL Sunday Ticket for $299.
The YouTube TV base plan carries other key sports channels for fans such as TNT, TBS, SEC Network, ACC Network, FS1, and FS2. Unlimited Cloud DVR is included with a subscription. And you can create up to 6 profiles for a household per account.
The YouTube TV app is available on most Smart TVs, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, NVIDIA Shield TV, Apple TV and Chromecast. YouTube TV offers a free 7-day trial.
How to Watch Big Ten Football for free
A lot of college football and basketball games are expected to air on FOX, NBC and CBS in 2023. A new seven-year agreement worth an estimated $1 billion for Big Ten Conference sports is set to begin this year.
For cord-cutters, that means a decent TV antenna will get you more Big Ten games this year for free.
Head over to the free online tool at the Antennas Direct website and punch in your zip code or address. You will see a list of broadcast towers near your home, and even some recommended models.
To get started with a TV antenna, plug it into the coax jack in the back of your TV and under settings scan for channels for OTA (over-the-air) or “Air TV”.
Here are a number of resources that I have assembled over the years based on my own hands-on testing.
- How to Choose the Best TV Antenna
- How to Connect Multiple TVs to One Antenna
- Review: The Best Indoor TV Antennas
- Review: The Best Outdoor TV Antennas
How to Watch Big Ten Network Without Cable FAQs
These are questions readers ask when searching for ways to watch Big Ten Network without a pay TV provider.
What is BTN Plus?
BTN Plus is a subscription based service that does NOT have college football games. It’s basically a catch-all for games that aren’t aired on TV. So we’re talking about women’s volleyball matches, not college football.
What streaming service has Big Ten Network?
There are six live TV streaming services that carry Big Ten Network. DIRECTV STREAM, fubo, Hulu Live TV, Sling TV, Vidgo and YouTube TV all carry BTN as part of their live TV service.
Can I watch Big Ten Network on the Fox Sports app?
Does Peacock have Big Ten Network?
Peacock does not carry Big Ten Network, but does offer a variety of live sports that you will find on NBC.
Can you get Big Ten Network on Amazon Prime?
Amazon Prime Video does not have Big Ten Network. BTN is a cable TV channel that you can find on cable providers and live TV streaming services.
Does ESPN+ have Big Ten Network?
No. ESPN+ does not carry Big Ten Network, but the sports-only streaming service does carry live college sports for a number of conferences across the U.S.
What schools are on the Big Ten Network?
The Big Ten Conference is made up of 14 member institutions, and you can find coverage of their college sports teams on Big Ten Network. The conference’s footprint runs from the Atlantic Ocean with universities such as Penn State to the Midwest with the University of Nebraska.
- University of Illinois
- Indiana University
- University of Iowa
- University of Maryland
- University of Michigan
- Michigan State University
- University of Minnesota
- University of Nebraska-Lincoln
- Northwestern University
- Ohio State University
- Pennsylvania State University
- Purdue University
- Rutgers University-New Brunswick
- University of Wisconsin-Madison
How can I watch Big Ten Network Without Cable?
DIRECTV STREAM is one of the best ways to get Big Ten Network without cable.
The Choice plan has a number of local channels like ABC and FOX, which you will need for Big 10 coverage. So you don’t have to worry about missing any college football games or even NFL games.
You can get a free 5-day trial. You’ll get 105+ live channels, including sports networks like ESPN, FS1, FS2 and SEC Network.
If I wasn’t going with DIRECTV STREAM for Big 10 coverage, I’d also consider trying fuboTV, which gets you an 152 channel lineup that includes Big Ten Network, FOX, ABC, FS1 and PAC-12 Networks. A subscription costs $74.99 per month after a free 7-day trial.
If you cancel the trial beforehand? No problem. That’s the beauty of using a live streaming service like fuboTV instead of cable. You can cancel whenever you like. Look over fuboTV’s channel lineup and see if it’s worth considering.
Note: This article was published on August 23, 2021, and has been updated to reflect new pricing.
Founder and Editor of The Cord Cutting Report. Before launching the site in 2016, he worked for more than two decades as a staff writer or correspondent for a number of daily newspapers, including The Boston Globe. His enthusiasm for tech began with the Atari 2600. Follow @james_kimble