Lots of stuff coming out today. Rebranding news galore as we found out that Versus will undergo a name change on January 2, 2012. Then there’s Sporting News Radio changing its name to Yahoo! Sports Radio as of today. And Westwood One Radio has merged with Dial-Global today. Crazy day. Let’s do some linkage and hope nothing else breaks.
First, Mike McCarthy of USA Today broke the news last night of the Versus rebrand.
We have the reason for the rebrand to NBC Sports Network directly from NBC.
Sports Business Journal’s John Ourand has a story on the Versus rebrand.
Bob Fernandez of the Philadelphia Inquirer says the goal of the Versus rebrand is to gain more access for NBC Sports Network and to raise subscriber fees.
Georg Szalai at the Hollywood Reporter says NBC Sports hopes to provide marketers and affiliates with a better value for the channel.
Mike Reynolds of Multichannel News writes that the new name for Versus will launch on January 2.
Stuart Levine from Variety says NBC Sports hopes the new name will give the channel better footing in competing against ESPN.
All Access looks at Sporting News Radio becoming Yahoo! Sports Radio as of today.
The Houston Chronicle’s David Barron explores the rebranding of Sporting News Radio.
John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer say local SNR affiliates were informed of the new name today.
To other stories now.
ESPN Ombudsman Kelly McBride of the Poynter Institute wonders if ESPN got too entrenched in its NFL lockout coverage.
Eric Morath of the Wall Street Journal says Fox Sports is protesting an MLB-backed plan to sell media rights for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Overseas, Current’s Keith Olbermann writes in the London (UK) Guardian how News Corp. President Rupert Murdoch hired and fired him from Fox Sports Net.
Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com says Texas A&M is appealing to the NCAA to use a 17 year old rule to block Texas and the Longhorn Network from airing high school football games.
Dan Fogarty of SportsGrid says a Seattle sports radio host gave former Mariners pitcher Erik Bedard a real parting shot as he heads to Boston in a trade to the Red Sox.
Also at SportsGrid, Timothy Burke has a mashup of horrible Tim McCarver analysis from Saturday.
To Cam Martin of SportsNewser who writes is ESPN is renaming its RISE brand to reflect its true focus.
Louisa Ada Seltzer of Media Life Magazine notes the return of fans to NFL team websites which bodes well for the regular season.
Richard Lawler from Engadget HD notes that AT&T U-verse suddenly booted ESPN 3D off its lineup last night without any warning.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell says the NFL fantasy business seems to have recovered from the lockout.
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post is calling out some sports reporters for being lapdogs.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union has his reaction to NBC changing Versus’ name.
Pete also has the MLB Network schedule of games for early August.
Ken Schott of the Schenectady Gazette writes NBC/Versus NHL voice Mike Emrick will be honored by the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame.
In the New Jersey Newsroom, Evan Weiner says football may be back, and so will the stadium hostage game.
The Washington Post’s Dan Steinberg in the DC Sports Bog says former ESPN’er Brett Haber is leaving his local DC gig to spend more time with his family.
Here’s the announcement of Haber’s departure from his local station.
Mark Washburn of the Charlotte (NC) Observer says two local radio stations are swapping their national ESPN and Fox Sports Radio affiliations.
Tom Jones from the St. Petersburg Times looks back at the weekend in sports TV.
In his blog, David Barron of the Houston Chronicle briefly touches upon the Sporting News Radio rebrand and discusses the passing of a legendary Texas play-by-play man.
The Pittsburg (KS) Morning Sun has a story from Jesse Cordova that ESPN will air a high school football game in neighboring Missouri.
The Denver Post’s Dusty Saunders says despite having a losing record last season, the Broncos will be covered aplenty on TV.
In the Salt Lake Tribune, Scott D. Pierce says Utah fans are already screaming about the lack of TV exposure in this year’s Pac-12 football schedule.
Brian T. Smith of the Tribune talks with new Fox Sports college football announcer Craig Bolerjack who comes over from CBS.
Tom Hoffarth in the Los Angeles Daily News has this week’s sports calendar.
Jon Wilner at the San Jose Mercury News looks at how TV rights and market size come into play for any future Pac-12 expansion.
Jonathan Okanes in the Mercury News says there’s a new FM sports radio station in the Bay Area.
Rachel Bachman of The Oregonian talks with ESPN’s Desmond Howard, Kirk Herbstreit and Erin Andrews about the 25th anniversary of College GameDay.
Raju Mudhar of the Toronto Star says sports seems to be getting the reality TV treatment throughout visual mediums.
Bruce Dowbiggin from the Toronto Globe and Mail says TSN seems to be a retraining ground for coaches.
To The Big Lead and Jason Lisk where he looks at the rather interesting tweets by NFL insiders Peter King and Adam Schefter.
Sports Media Watch learns that Turner Sports’ Marc Fein is leaving to pursue other opportunities.
That’s going to do it. Lots of links today.