Very well written piece. There are significant challenges for all of TV Land who has run afoul of the basics of supply and demand. There is too much supply in the content delivery (A gajillion channels) and not nearly enough demand for low quality, uninteresting bullshit. It isn't just ESPN who faces this problem, it is every single cable channel out there. And the problems all just got a whole lot more real with Netflix and other companies able to deliver quality content without being hooked to the cable cord. HBO and Showtime have also figured this out it seems.
The only thing which has kept me from not dropping cable is live sports. And really other than college football, I'm not really sure I care if I have access to that. (I still haven't subscribed to Netflix, so I don't have an opinion about that). But there are not very many quality programs I care to watch for the amount of channels on my cable box (and I only have expanded basic.
The other great point made by Ramzy is the ability to provide more value add through good analysis (All 22 or endzone views with former coaches providing commentary of the plays--BTN better be thinking this way too--or other X&O type breakdowns of meaningful time. I would watch that, and it would keep me interested. Just watching a replay of the game is not as interesting as having someone who really knows what is happening and what is supposed to be happening point it out. Heck, Ross Fulton may be able to parlay that into a new career! Of course the interwebs via youtube is already filled with 30minute versions of games (Every play with the dead space edited out) so that doesn't add value.