Kickoff to the 2011 college football season is less than a week away and the NFL officially gets things started the following week. Diehard football fans can often be found tailgating outside the stadium or on the campus of their favorite team, but doing so typically means missing coverage of other key games going on simultaneously.

Dish Network has come up with a solution to this dilema called the Tailgater, a portable television satellite antenna designed to keep tailgaters up-to-date on games from around the league.

The 10-pound device is encased in a weather-proof plastic shell and features a handle for easy transportation. Furthermore, the actual dish inside the shell can rotate to align with the closest satellite in the sky. A 50-foot coaxial cable is used to connect the dish to a near by television and requires a 110-volt power source. Users will also need a special receiver, model ViP 211k HD Solo, to tune in high-def channels.

Dish Network is offering the Tailgater for $350 and the Solo receiver is an extra $149.99. Current Dish customers can add the Tailgater to their monthly bill for $7 and the device can be deactivated once the season is over.

Of course, the Tailgater isn’t just for sports fans either. If you frequent the outdoors and would like to keep the kids entertained before bedtime, this could be a great option. And if you don’t believe there is a market for such a device, just visit any SEC school on a Saturday afternoon during the fall.