Around 3 p.m., I was ready to do the Friday megalinks so I could leave my evening free, but thanks to some unknown issue that prevented many bloggers who use Google’s Blogspot service from logging in, I could not do them. So I’m doing them at night. Again.
Anyway, let’s get these done so I can move on to other things.
As usual, we have the Weekend Viewing Picks. Baseball and the start of the NFL dominate our viewing weekend.
The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry takes precedence on the networks. Saturday and Sunday, the games are on national TV with the worst that the networks have to offer. Joe Buck and Tim McCarver are on the case on Fox for Saturday at 4:10 p.m. Then ESPN with Jon Miller and Joe Morgan call the game Sunday night at 8.
If you need an alternative this weekend, MLB Network will have the Cubs-Rockies, Saturday night and TBS’ Sunday game is Minnesota-Detroit. Of course, I have the schedules below, but if you want to see what Fox, ESPN and TBS have to say about their games, click here.
The NFL exhibition season starts Sunday with the Hall of Fame game between Buffalo and Tennessee. Both teams will wear throwback jerseys as the NFL celebrates the 50th anniversary of the old American Football League and you’ll see plenty of celebration with the NFL this season.
On Saturday, there’s the Pro Football Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies which both ESPN and NFL Network will carry. Since Comcast started carrying NFLN on digital basic last week, you’ll have the chance to see how NFLN covers the ceremonies, but you won’t be able to avoid Chris Berman no matter what you do because he’s delivering the introduction speech for Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson. The less I say about Berman, the better. The Hall of Fame inductions start at 7 p.m. on both ESPN and NFL Network.
Golf Channel and CBS have the last PGA Tour stop before next week’s PGA Championship, and this tournament, the Bridgestone Invitational has 49 of the top 50 golfers. Tiger Woods is always in contention at this tourney. Golf Channel kicks off coverage at noon on both Saturday and Sunday with CBS coming in at 2.
NASCAR stops at Watkins Glen for a race and I don’t feel like writing the sponsor. Suffice to say, ESPN carries the race on Sunday starting at 2.
UFC 101 is this Saturday and it’s on pay per view at 10.
The US Open Series continues this weekend and the men are in DC for the Legg Mason Classic while the women are still on the West Coast for the LA Women’s Tennis Championships. ESPN2 and Tennis Channel team up for coverage and the times are listed below.
If you want to see beach volleyball gold medalist Kerri Walsh in first action since giving birth, she’s at the Hermosa Beach Open this Saturday at 4:30 p.m. on NBC.
And if you want to avoid sports, there’s IFC’s miniseries, Bollywood Hero which is on IFC Saturday at 10 p.m. I also suggest the series premiere of 10 Dollar Dinners with Melissa (the winner of The Next Food Network Star last week) which is on Sunday at 12:30 on Food Network.
There’s True Blood which last week had its best episode on HBO, Sunday night at 9. If you don’t have HBO, National Geographic Channel has a fascinating special called “Drain The Ocean” which looks at what’s really on the ocean floor. That’s on Sunday night at 9 as well. My viewing picks for the weekend are here. Check them out.
Now time for the links.
Michael Hiestand of USA Today writes that Cris Collinsworth is ready to take the mantle from John Madden this Sunday.
From the Wall Street Journal, Michael Judge reviews ESPN’s documentary, “The Lost Son of Havana”.
Sports Business Daily’s William Cooper catches up NFL Network’s Rich Eisen who emcees the Pro Football Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies on Saturday.
William has another article for SBD and it’s regarding Virgin America making a splash by sponsoring this weekend’s Hermosa Beach AVP Tour stop.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell says an unsold sponsorship for a tennis exhibition later this month might be a good bargain.
Darren writes the New York Jets are doing one thing right by embracing Twitter.
And Darren looks into the deferred contracts that the Arizona Diamondbacks are paying well into the next decade.
Christopher Byrne of the Eye on Sports Media looks at a Redskins fan who became an embedded team beat reporter for CBSSports.com.
The Hugging Harold Reynolds blog chronicles how it got mistaken for a Harold Reynolds impersonator on Twitter and got banned in the process.
The Sports Media Watch looks at the ratings to date for the MLB on Fox.
SMW looks at the big ratings for the Buick Open thanks to Tiger Woods’ win last Sunday.
James Young from Variety says Telemundo and mun2 stand to get high ratings for the USA-Mexico World Cup qualifying match.
By the way, DirecTV is putting mun2 on channel 203 for the soccer match on August 12.
Thomas Umstead of Multichannel News says Fox Sports Detroit and Comcast are working together to put the Tigers On Demand.
Mike Reynolds of Multichannel writes that Turner Sports is already launching new media coverage for next week’s PGA Championship.
East and Mid-Atlantic
Chad Finn of the Boston Globe looks at the machinations of WEEI and the new WBZ-FM leading up to next week’s launch of 98.5 FM The Sports Hub.
Chris Reidy of the Globe writes about ESPNU being made available on Comcast systems in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine.
Amanda Bruno of the Batter-up with Bruno blog looks at the possibility of the Boston Globe charging for its content online.
Kristine Leahy has Friday’s edition of The Five on WEEI.com.
And WEEI.com has something called “The WEEIk That Was“. This may be the one and only time we link to this.
Newsday’s Neil Best looks at this week’s Hofstra University sportscasting workshop originally targeted at teens, but getting a more diverse crowd this year.
Neil says Rutgers University has a new analyst for its football radio network.
Bob Raissman of the New York Daily News is angry for no good reason.
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post gets on ESPN for failing to explain the background of the Nolan Ryan beating of Robin Ventura. Like the network should have had a three minute thesis on the whole issue. What exactly do Raissman and Mushnick want? I don’t understand sometimes. No, make that most of the time.
The Post’s Justin Terranova has five questions for Giants radio play-by-play man Bob Papa.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union writes that Giants linebacker Gary Clark isn’t waiting for retirement to look at a broadcasting career.
In his blog, Pete mentions that an Albany TV sports anchor gets a plum assignment for NBC at the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Philly.com has pictures of the Phillies honoring their late broadcaster Harry Kalas by putting his portrait on their Wall of Fame.
Jim Williams of the Washington Examiner talks about the weekend sports fare on TV.
Jim says he would like to hear more of the Examiner’s sports staff on DC sports radio.
And Jim writes that Joe Theismann returns to the airwaves this Monday.
Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald talks about Cris Collinsworth moving from the studio to the booth for NBC this season and also mentions a Miami sports radio host moving to Boston.
Tony Barnhart of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution talks with ESPN’s Lee Corso who hopes to be back on TV in time for the College Gameday season premiere in Atlanta.
John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer says native Cris Collinsworth looks forward to being a game analyst again.
Michael Zuidema of the Grand Rapids (MI) Press writes that an area university will video stream its games on the internet so parents can watch their kids in action.
Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says new Sirius NFL Radio host Rich Gannon sang the praises of the Packers.
Tom Miller of the Janesville (WI) Gazette writes about an ESPN photographer who’s accompanying NFL insider Chris Mortensen on his road trip.
Ed Sherman from Crain’s Chicago Business talks about a new show that premieres on Comcast SportsNet Chicago this Sunday.
And Ed has his winners and losers of the week.
Ted Cox of the Chicago Daily Herald writes that the Allstate Arena will weather the loss of the Arena Football League’s Chicago Rush.
Paul Christian in the Rochester (MN) Post-Bulletin says the post-Madden era begins on Sunday.
Dan Caesar from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch looks at the sports radio ratings.
Dan mentions that two Missouri University football games are heading to pay per view.
Jay Posner of the San Diego Union-Tribune says it appears that Chargers fans may have to deal with local regular season blackouts for the first time since 2004.
John Maffei in the North County Times says a San Diego sports radio station’s hard work paid off when Jake Peavy was traded.
Jim Carlisle from the Ventura County Star feels Cris Collinsworth has some big pants to fill.
Jim writes that the NBA is now treating Christmas Day as just another day.
Diane Pucin in the Los Angeles Times writes that despite being fired from Fox Sports, Steve Lyons still takes a shoot-from-the-hip attitude to Dodgers games.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News takes a look at some of the youngest generation who might down the road be heard on our TV and radios.
Bruce Dowbiggin of the Toronto Globe and Mail says some Hollywood directing star power is looking to bring 3D to hockey.
That will do it for the megalinks.