UCONN men's basketball has been on SNY for a few years, so I don't see this to be as big of a deal as many believe. How much penetration does SNY have in CT? Does SNY have carriage in the eastern part of the state?
It was a pretty big battle in 2010, but Charter Northeast does carry SNY on channel 33. Charter covers most of Northeast CT including Storrs/Mansfield/Willimantic (a few towns are served by MetroCast.)
The bummer is for people who don't have cable and rely on OTA signals, but it's not a huge surprise, this is the way most sports have gone.
The bigger bummer is for CPTV, this was a huge revenue and viewer generator for them.
Although I often ask people, "Which do you find more obnoxious, commercials or pledge drives?" and I'm surprised how many times I get "pledge drives." Viewers might like this.