Friday’s series finale of the critically-acclaimed series Friday Night Lights appears to be just the beginning. Throughout five seasons, the show has struggled for an audience. It was nearly cancelled three different times. Fortunately, the show continued through a partnership between NBC/Universal and DirecTv.

As we draw toward the series finale airing Friday, the show (which struggled on a brief run on ABC Family) is getting legs on cable once again. Tuesday (opposite MLB’s All-Star game), cable giant ESPN aired the first two episodes of the series during prime time. They will broadcast an ‘FNL’ marathon beginning Thursday July 14th on ESPN Classic. ESPN Films and ESPN Classics vice president and executive producer Connor Schell, said, “At its core, Friday Night Lights captures the blend of drama, excitement and heartache that embodies what it means to be a sports fan, leading to its very loyal and passionate following among viewers.”

We couldn’t agree more.

The five season marathon will air on a new ESPN channel dedicated exclusively to University of Texas, the Longhorn Network, through a partnership forged between the cable giant and the University in early 2010.

The announcement comes with an additional lift from long time fan and ESPN sports personality Bill Simmons. He will use new sports and pop culture site Grantland to publish an oral history of the show, from FNL’s cast and crew.

On behalf of ‘FNL’ fans everywhere, I’ll say…”can’t wait”…

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