Universal Sports Network was an American sports-oriented digital cable and satellite television network. It was owned as a joint venture between InterMedia Partners (which owns a controlling 92% interest) and NBCUniversal (which owns the remaining 8%). The channel was launched in 2006 as World Championship Sports Network (WCSN); it was co-founded by Claude Ruibal (who served as its chairman and chief executive officer) and Tom Hipkins (who served as a member of the channel's board of directors), with the help of Carlos Silva (its president and chief operating officer). One of the first events broadcast by WCSN was coverage of the United States Track and Field Championships via streaming video. In 2007, InterMedia Partners gained a majority ownership interest in the network. By March 2008, WCSN began to be carried on broadcast television, through the digital subchannels of several stations owned by the Granite Broadcasting Corporation.
NBC Universal entered into a partnership with InterMedia in which the former acquired a minority interest in the channel; in addition, on June 16, 2008, the network was rebranded as Universal Sports, incorporating a new logo with the NBC peacock. By November 2008, all 10 of NBC's owned-and-operated stations had begun carrying the network on one of their digital subchannels. Universal Sports offered carriage on broadcast stations on a channel lease basis until 2011, with the provision that the stations strike deals with cable providers in their markets to carry the network by January 31, 2009. If a station failed to obtain cable carriage, the network had the right to move its affiliation to another station in that market that would be able to gain cable carriage. The network was being shopped to NBC-affiliated stations until December 1.
On June 17, 2010, Universal Sports, along with the International Rugby Board, announced that the channel would bring "unprecedented national television and digital media coverage of the 2011 and 2015 Rugby World Cup tournaments". On October 22, 2015, it was announced that Universal Sports Network would close down on November 16, 2015, and that NBC Sports would inherit the network's portfolio of sports rights for its own networks (such as NBC, NBCSN and Universal HD).