Let’s do some linkage on this Monday.
Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch talks with TNT’s Charles Barkley about the next phase of his career.
Michael Hiestand of USA Today notes that Saturday nights are becoming a sports TV bastion.
Chris Chase at USA Today’s Game On blog has video of an NFL referee cursing which surprised CBS’ Kevin Harlan.
Liana B. Baker and Lisa Richwine of Reuters says US cable sports networks are in a scrum for ad dollars.
Kimberly Nordyke of the Hollywood Reporter writes that Time Warner SportsNet has signed Cox, but Comcast, DirecTV and Dish still remain holdouts.
Jon Lafayette of Broadcasting & Cable says Travel Channel has signed a deal with the NFL to produce a show on the Cleveland Browns traveling to road games.
E.J. Schultz of Advertising Age says despite the NHL lockout, hockey marketers are finding ways to find their target audience.
Media Life Magazine says CBS scored with Alabama-LSU in primetime on Saturday.
Chuck Ross at TV Week explains why baseball remains the greatest game despite its ratings.
Ed Sherman at The Sherman Report talks with CBS/TNT’s Marv Albert about calling games at the age of 71.
Ed wonders where Michelle Beadle will fit in NBC Sports Network’s plans.
CBS Sports reports that Dallas Mavericks announcer Mark Followill got into a bike accident over the weekend.
Radio Ink notes that former NBA coach Stan Van Gundy has joined NBC Sports Radio as an analyst.
Digital TV Europe reports that Al Jazeera’s beIN Sport in France has obtained the rights to air NBA games along with the NFL it previously signed.
Chad Finn of the Boston Globe writes that NBC is going all in with soccer.
Phil Mushnick at the New York Post says Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the New York Road Runners should have admitted fault in attempting to run the NYC Marathon this past weekend.
Sarah Kogod of the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog notes that a Wizards beer ad featured an underaged 19 year old Bradley Beal.
Jim Williams of the Washington Examiner looks at the NBC deal to air English Premier League games starting in 2013.
Jodie Wagner of the Palm Beach Post talks with a local sports radio personality about working in the local market.
Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas says the Texas Rangers have announced their broadcast teams for next season.
David Barron of the Houston Chronicle reports on the local sports radio ratings.
Jeff Balke of the Houston Press provides fans with ways to watch the Rockets for those who don’t have access to Comcast SportsNet Houston.
Neal Rubin at the Detroit News says a group hopes to land ESPN’s X Games for Motown.
Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says Fox’s crew found a lot to praise about the Green Bay Packers.
Danny Ecker at Crain’s Chicago Business writes that the Big Ten Network continues to air the so-called non-revenue sports.
Paul M. Banks at the Chicago Sports Media Watch wonders why the Illinois Sports Facility Authority would hire a former TV reporter to run the agency.
John Vomhof, Jr. of the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal provides a look at Fox Sports North’s new studios.
The Denver Post’s Dusty Saunders feels some sports broadcasters make predictions that can’t possibly come true.
Dusty says MLB is trying to spin the World Series ratings.
Tom Hoffarth at the Los Angeles Daily News writes about the last two holdouts for Time Warner SportsNet.
Tom has the SoCal sports calendar for this week.
Tom has the five things he learned over the weekend.
Sports Media Watch notes that while Alabama-LSU’s overnights were way down from last year, it still had impressive numbers for CBS.
That’s going to do it for now. Squeezed as many links as I could today.
Just announced by the Al Jazeera-owned beIN Sport, the network that has rights to La Liga of Spain, Serie A of Italy and Ligue 1 of France, has been picked up by the Time Warner Cable/Bright House combo meaning it increases its availability across the country.
In addition to the three leagues, Al Jazeera’s beIn Sport airs away games of the US Men’s National Team in World Cup qualifiers and English League games.
Not sure if this is a sports tier deal, but soccer fans who have missed La Liga and Serie A since their move from Gol TV in August will now get access as long as they have Time Warner/Bright House.
The two providers have agreed to pick up both the English and Spanish feeds of beIN.
Here’s the announcement.
Time Warner Cable & Bright House Networks To Launch beIN SPORT, The New Soccer and International Sports Network
beIN SPORT Scores New Affiliation Agreement with Country’s Second and Sixth-Largest Cable Operators
MIAMI, FL – November 2, 2012 – beIN SPORT, the new independent 24-hour global network dedicated to live and exclusive coverage of the world’s best soccer and international sports, today announced it will be carried by Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks.
Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks will offer the network in English and a separate network in Spanish on TV and on demand. Additionally, both networks will be made available to authenticated subscribers through the TWC TV website (www.twctv.com) and applications inside the home and through beIN SPORT’s website (www.beinsport.tv) and applications inside and outside the home.
With beIN SPORT, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks customers will have access to exciting soccer and international sports programming, including top soccer leagues and tournaments from Europe and South America, including games from Spain’s La Liga, Italy’s Serie A, France’s Ligue 1, South American World Cup Qualifiers and Copa America 2015. The network also carries the away games of the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team in the qualifying rounds of the 2014 World Cup.
Availability of both channels will vary by market.
“U.S. international sports fans are underserved and beIN SPORT fulfills that need. Our original programming and vast, exclusive coverage is designed to meet the desire of viewers to ‘be in’ the game and be involved in the international sports community,” said Yousef Al Obaidly, managing director of beIN SPORT. “We are excited to offer Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks customers the unmatched play of international competition captured only on beIN SPORT.”
Once again, the extremely connected John Ourand of Sports Business Journal has broken yet another story involving the sports television bidding process.
He breaks news that the current rightsholders for the US rights for the English Premier League, Fox and ESPN have dropped out of the bidding for the upcoming three year contract that would begin in the 2013-14 season. Ourand first tweeted that the Fox/ESPN entity was dropping out and that NBC has emerged as the frontrunner to the rights.
SBD: Fox and ESPN have dropped out of the EPL bidding process. NBCU is the clear front runner. BeIN the big question mark. Link coming.
— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) October 26, 2012
It’s a bit of a surprise because earlier this month when NBC won the rights to Formula 1 races beating out Fox, it was thought that the Peacock would not have room for English Premier League games.
Now this has seemingly all changed with today’s developments with Fox/ESPN dropping out of the bidding. Ourand reports that NBC tripled Fox/ESPN’s bid for the rights.
The dark horse in the room is the Al Jazeera-owned beIN Sport which has deep pockets and has the rights to Italy’s Serie A, Spain’s La Liga and France’s Ligue 1. What role will it have, if any, in the upcoming EPL contract?
Fox issued a statement which notes its disappointment in losing the EPL.
Fox: We were disappointed to learn today that EPL has elected to move forward with a different media partner despite FOx’s aggressive bid
— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) October 26, 2012
Fox had used English Premier League games as a launching pad for programming and depends solidly on the games for the bulk of its schedule. This leaves Fox Soccer with the UEFA Champions League, CONCACAF Champions League, Scottish Premier League, the World Cup from 2014-2022, but the loss of the English Premier League leaves huge holes in the schedule.
EPL Talk notes
that Fox Soccer and its previous incarnations had aired the English Premier League for 15 years and while an official announcement has yet to be made by the league, Fox/ESPN will continue to air games until the end of this season.
We’ll continue to monitor the developments in this story.
Before the day is through, let’s do some linkage for you.
Steve Berkowitz from USA Today looks at the Pac-12′s TV contract which is the richest in college sports (for now).
Speaking of USA Today, Ed Sherman of The Sherman Report says the newspaper is restructuring its sports department and about a dozen staffers have been laid off. That includes Friend of Fang’s Bites Mike McCarthy and Game On! blogger Tom Weir. Very sad to see this. I met Mike a few years ago when we covered an event at ESPN. Good reporter and writer. I hope to be linking to him again soon.
Ed also writes about ESPN holding onto the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest.
ESPN Ombudsman Jason Fry of the Poynter Institute watches ESPN’s interviewing guru critique the questioning style of some of its reporters.
Marisa Guthrie at the Hollywood Reporter looks at NBCUniversal’s plans to offer some 5,500 hours of coverage on the Olympics.
John Eggerton of Broadcasting & Cable says Golf Channel will have live coverage of U.S. Open qualifying on June 4.
Tim Baysinger at B&C recaps last night’s Sports Business Journal/Sports Business Daily’s Sports Business Awards.
Rich Thomaselli from Advertising Age says the NHL’s social media and traditional ad campaigns have helped bring casual fans to the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
After being disrespected by its own local media last week, the Los Angeles Kings made this infographic giving a brief history on its logo, names of players and number of times the team has been in the postseason. This season, the Kings have stepped its social media campaign and website to provide fans with a very humorous, but also informative experience. Keep it up, Kings. You guys rock!
Eric Deggans of the Tampa Bay Times, writing in the Indiana University National Sports Journalism Center, notes the difficultly for women to find a proper role in sports television.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell says Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton’s past is preventing collectors from lining up at his doorstep.
Congratulations to Steve Lepore of Puck The Media who has become SB Nation’s NHL Media writer. Steve is a hard worker who has created a very good niche for himself. And his first column for SB Nation is about the ratings for the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs Western Conference Final clincher.
Steve also writes about the controversy over NHL on NBC charlatan Pierre McGuire’s withholding of information over an incident between the benches during Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final.
Jerry Barmash of Fishbowl NY says MSG Network will air two specials on the upcoming Belmont Stakes in which I’ll Have Another will go for horse racing’s Triple Crown.
Ken Schott from the Schenectady Gazette says in addition, MSG Plus will air some horse races this summer.
Pete Dougherty at the Albany Times Union writes that ESPN has expanded its 3-D coverage of Wimbledon.
Ken McMillan from the Middletown (NY) Times Herald-Record says Al Jazeera will be launching two soccer channels this summer.
Keith Groller at the Allentown (PA) Morning Call looks at ESPN on ABC’s plans for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.
Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog says former ESPN’er Dave Feldman is leaving the local market to go home to his native Northern California.
Dan says former DC NFL Team running back and sports radio host John Riggins will be hosting an outdoors show next year.
Jim Williams from the Washington Examiner says a deadline is fast approaching in which the Nationals will find out how much MASN will be paying them for TV rights.
Mark Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times says the Rays are paying tribute to Fox Sports MLB reporter Ken Rosenthal by wearing bow ties.
Tom Jones of the Times says MLB Network analyst Mitch Williams ripped Tropicana Field.
David Barron from the Houston Chronicle looks at the proposed uses for the abandoned Astrodome.
John Kiesewetter in the Cincinnati Enquirer says Fox Sports is on the Reds’ bandwagon.
Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes that MLB Walking, Talking Conflict of Interest Bud Selig is holding firm to his retirement date.
Paul M. Banks at Chicago Sports Media Watch says the Big Ten Network has helped to expand the league and in part, raise Northwestern’s profile.
Gordon Monson of the Salt Lake Tribune says even though the Utah Jazz bought the sports radio station where he works, he’ll remain an independent voice.
Chris Jenkins from the San Diego Union-Tribune says Fox Sports San Diego’s Mark Sweeney is a natural fit as Padres analyst.
Tim Sullivan of the Union-Tribune says he enjoys listening to the Padres on the radio.
The Los Angeles Daily News’ Tom Hoffarth can’t believe he’s seeing a farmers dating service ad on NBC Sports Network.
Laura Stone of the Toronto Star writes that a new feature by CBC for the NHL Stanley Cup Final has some hardcore female sports fans hopping mad.
Timothy Burke at Deadspin looks at the Twitter police for college sports programs.
Sports Media Watch notes the increased ratings for the series-clinching game of the NHL Stanley Cup Western Conference Final on NBC Sports Network.
Joe Favorito examines the right way and the wrong way to attract Twitter followers.
Dave Kohl at The Broadcast Booth marvels at the LA media for getting the Kings logo and players wrong during local newscasts.
And I’ll end the linkage there for now. Enjoy the rest of your day.
Let’s do some sports media thoughts for you on this back to work Monday. As usual, they’re in bullet form.
- Last week’s news that TBS would pick up the new single elimination MLB Wild Card Playoff games for this year and next was not a surprise. TBS has pleased MLB with its postseason coverage since 2007, gaining all of the League Division Series and one League Championship Series, sharing that round with Fox. Not only would TBS pay an extra $10 million for the new playoff games on top of its current fee, but it would also give two LDS games to MLB Network. Now that was a surprise.
It gives MLB Network its first foothold into postseason games after increasing the amount of regular season game telecasts steadily over the network’s first four years of existence. As Richard Sandomir of the New York Times reported on Friday, MLB Network will have Bob Costas and Matt Vasgersian call the LDS games with yet to be named analysts (expect to see Jim Kaat and Mitch Wiiliams or even John Smoltz). It’s a big move for MLB Network. Just as with TBS’ postseason package, the games will be exclusive with no local simulcasts. However, it does give MLB Network some leverage with cable and satellite providers to spread its reach beyond the current 69 million households.
- Also last week, NBC Sports Group announced coverage plans for NBC Sports Network, Bravo, CNBC, MSNBC and Telemundo. With each NBCUniversal channel assigned to certain carry certain sports, it will be a virtual feast for viewers to see the athletes compete. Add this to the live streaming that will be provided on NBCOlympics.com, fans should not miss anything from London this summer.
Now the hosting assignments give us some interesting food for thought. Fred Roggin hosting boxing on CNBC shows consistency from 2008. I was quite surprised about the return of Pat O’Brien to the Olympics. While he really hasn’t been on the national radar since losing his job at Entertainment Tonight and The Insider due to his personal problems, it hasn’t stopped him from working at Fox Sports Radio and making regular appearances on Fox News Channel. I’ll be happy to see Pat make his puns and illiteration attempts from the hallowed grounds of Wimbledon during Olympic tennis.
And I’ll be interested to see how Kelly Tilghman does on MSNBC as she’ll be hosting events there. Kelly has been host and done play-by-play for Golf Channel. I hadn’t seen her as an Olympic host and while she’s been polarizing to golf fans during her stint on GC, I think she’s been pretty decent as a studio host and interviewer, although she sometimes has her strange moments.
We’ll be waiting to see who else will be hosting on NBC Sports Network and on NBC in London.
- And who would have thunk that Al Jazeera, the network known for ruffling feathers in the Middle East could be a player for soccer rights? It’s been steadily obtaining rights to soccer in the Middle East and is about to start networks in France and in the United States. Al Jazeera has the US rights to Spain’s La Liga, France’s La Ligue, and Italy’s Serie A. These had been previously on Gol TV as well as Fox Soccer. Some games were sublicensed to ESPN throughout the years. Now with Al Jazeera obtaining the games, it will create two networks called beIN Sport as Multichannel News’ Mike Reynolds reports. The whole issue is if beIN Sport’s channels, one in English, the other in Spanish can gain wide distribution. If Al Jazeera gets the English Premier League US rights over Fox Soccer and ESPN, then expect plenty of cable and satellite carriage pickups before the summer is out.
That’s going to do it.
Let’s do some megalinks on this Friday. My apologies for the lack of posts yesterday. The site was swamped with people linking to my post on How to Avoid Paying the $3.99 Fee For March Madness Live and it was down for most of the day. We seem to be ok today, although the site was down for a short stretch in the morning. But we’re back up now and time for some megalinks on this Friday.
The Weekend Viewing Picks are up and running. Lots of sports as the winter NCAA Championships including the basketball tournaments are underway.
Let’s get to your links.
Michael Hiestand from USA Today praises CBS/Turner for bringing the NCAA head of men’s basketball officiating back to explain controversial calls.
Reid Cherner of USA Today’s Game On blog remembers a great NCAA Tournmament buzzer beater from 1981 as called by NBC’s Marv Albert.
Sports Business Daily notes the overnight ratings for Thursday’s games from the NCAA Tournament were down, but still considered a win for CBS/Turner.
Matt Carmichael from Advertising Age tells us which two schools were Googled the most during yesterday’s NCAA Tournament action.
Dan Fogarty at SportsGrid has the absolutely hilarious video of a WGN morning news anchor trying to amp up the volume at ESPN’s Dick Vitale while technical difficulties arise.
Karen Hogan from Sports Video Group writes that the National Invitation Tournament may be the NCAA Tournament’s ugly sister, but it still gets major treatment from ESPN.
To Matt Yoder at Awful Announcing who notes another Twitter feud involving CNBC’s Darren Rovell, this one with Bomani Jones.
Sports Media Watch says Thursday’s 2nd round NCAA Tournament games received slightly lower overnight ratings from the year before.
Dave Kohl of The Broadcast Booth wants to know why name calling in sports radio is a more punishable offense than inaccurate reporting.
Greg Wyshynski of Yahoo’s Puck Daddy asks if the NHL’s new Stanley Cup ad campaign to replace the great “History Will Be Made” promos can be as successful.
Laura Northrup of the Consumerist wonders why NBA League Pass hasn’t adjusted to Daylight Savings Time?
All Access says ESPN Deportes Radio in Chicago has picked up the Spanish rights to the White Sox.
La Liga Talk has learned that Al Jazeera has obtained the US TV rights to Spain’s La Liga from Gol TV.
East and Mid-Atlantic
The Boston Globe’s Chad Finn talks with ESPN’s Dick Vitale.
At SB Nation Boston, Boston Sports Media Watch’s Bruce Allen says social networking may have created spoiled fans.
Tazina Vega from the New York Times says the NHL is hoping to lure viewers by airing all of its Stanley Cup Playoff games on various NBC Sports platforms.
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post feels the CBS/Turner NCAA Tournament collaboration has become the Home Shopping Network. Whatever.
The Post’s Justin Terranova talks with CBS/Turner analyst Clark Kellogg.
Justin has 5 questions for MSG Network NBA analyst Kelly Tripucka.
Dan Steinberg at the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog notes that the Onion has skewered the DC NFL Team.
Jim Williams of the Washington Examiner talks with a Turner Sports Interactive executive on how Twitter is incorporated into this year’s NCAA Tournament coverage.
Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald says NBC will air this fall’s Miami-Notre Dame football game in primetime.
David Barron from the Houston Chronicle notes that CBS/Turner’s Charles Barkley criticized Baylor’s ugly neon yellow uniforms.
David has the CBS/Turner announcing assignments for Saturday’s NCAA Tournament action.
Mel Bracht from The Oklahoman notes that Cox Cable subscribers can access the NCAA March Madness Live app for free provided they authenticate.
John E. Hoover from the Tulsa World says the Big 12′s new TV deals will ensure the survival of the conference.
John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer notes that Reds voice Marty Brennaman can be heard in a new UPS March Madness ad.
While Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel enjoys the NCAA Tounament, there are some things he can do without.
Ed Sherman at Crain’s Chicago Business announces he’ll no longer be writing his sports business and media blog for the publication.
Ed says he will be launching a new site on the sports media and I look forward to seeing it when it finally comes to fruition.
Brigid Sweeney of Crain’s Chicago Business notes that Bulls TV analyst Stacey King now has a new fashion line.
Paul Christian at the Rochester (MN) Post-Bulletin says the national Junior College championships can be seen online.
Dan Caesar of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the local CBS affiliate didn’t help matters by taking up a large portion of the screen during NCAA Tournament action for weather updates.
Bill Center at the San Diego Union-Tribune says maybe, maybe Fox Sports San Diego will launch on Saturday provided MLB approval comes that quickly.
Jim Carlisle of the Ventura County Star looks at the Erin Andrews network sweepstakes.
Jim says the NCAA Tournament has become predictable.
Jim has his weekend viewing picks.
Richard Horgan of Fishbowl LA says ESPN will not discipline its SoCal reporters for getting a big story wrong on the Dodgers ownership bid process.
We are going to end the links there. Not as many as in past weeks, but still a hefty amount. Enjoy your weekend.