Happy Mother’s Day! Thanks to Mr. College Football, Tony Barnhart, we have this great video of the late Alabama football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant doing an ad for South Central Bell. He talks about taking time for family and has this great line, “Have you called your mama today? I sure wish I could call mine.” After seeing it, I picked up my phone and called my mom. I was going to so anyway, but the ad made me do it earlier.
So to all the moms including mine and my sisters who brought two nieces and a nephew into my life, Happy Mother’s Day. And here’s the ad produced by the legendary Birmingham agency, Luckie & Co.
Enjoy the day.
This from ESPN and the Southeastern Conference. The two entities have partnered to form the cable-based SEC Network which will begin operation in August 2014.
The new SEC Network will air more than 1,000 conference events including 45 football games, 100 men’s and 60 women’s college basketball games, 75 baseball, as well as softball and various Olympic sports like gymnastics, track & field and other events.
All 14 member schools will be showcased on the new network. At the outset, AT&T U-Verse has signed up to carry the SEC Network. Other cable and satellite carriage agreements will be announced later.
The SEC Network will be based out of the ESPN Regional Television offices in Charlotte, NC.
ESPN will operate the SEC Network for 20 years and as a result, the Alleged Worldwide Leader’s rights agreement with the SEC will extend to 2034. So ESPN will be associated with the SEC well into the 21st Century.
We have the press release below.
20-Year Agreement and Rights Extension through 2034; AT&T U-verse Will Distribute the Network at Launch
The Southeastern Conference and ESPN have signed a 20-year agreement through 2034 to create and operate a multiplatform network, which will launch in August 2014, it was announced today by SEC Commissioner Mike Slive and ESPN President John Skipper. The new network and its accompanying digital platform will air SEC content 24/7 including more than 1,000 events in its first year.
The network will televise approximately 45 SEC football games, more than 100 men’s basketball games, 60 women’s basketball games, 75 baseball games, and events from across the SEC’s 21 sports annually. Programming will also include studio shows, original content such as SEC Storied, spring football games, signing day and pro days coverage. Hundreds of additional live events from various sports will be offered exclusively on the digital platform. The network and its digital extensions will connect with each SEC institution and create opportunities for each school to produce and develop content.
“The SEC Network will provide an unparalleled fan experience of top quality SEC content presented across the television network and its accompanying digital platforms,” stated Slive. “We will increase exposure of SEC athletics programs at all 14 member institutions, as we showcase the incredible student-athletes in our league. The agreement for a network streamlines and completes an overall media rights package that will continue the SEC’s leadership for the foreseeable future.”
Each weekend throughout the season, the new network will air multiple top-tier matchups from the strongest conference in college football. Since 2006, the SEC has claimed seven consecutive football national championships. In 2011-12, SEC teams won eight national championships: football (Alabama), men’s basketball (Kentucky), gymnastics (Alabama), men’s indoor track and field (Florida), women’s tennis (Florida), women’s golf (Alabama), men’s outdoor track and field (Florida), and softball (Alabama). Since 1990, the SEC has won 149 national team championships for an average of more than six per year.
Skipper said, “The SEC is unmatched in its success on the field and its popularity with fans nationwide. The new network’s top-quality SEC matchups across a range of sports will serve all sports enthusiasts including the most passionate, die-hard SEC fans. Also, it will serve the needs of our multichannel distributors and advertisers by providing extremely attractive programming options across all platforms.”
As part of the agreement, ESPN will now oversee the SEC’s official Corporate Sponsor Program. In addition, ESPN and the SEC also agreed to extend their existing media rights agreement through 2034. ESPN has televised the SEC since 1982. ESPN’s existing networks present more than 1,600 hours of SEC action each year. The new network will focus exclusively on the SEC and add another outlet to deliver sports fans more SEC content than ever.
AT&T U-verse® has been secured as the network’s first national distributor. AT&T U-verse is the fastest growing TV provider in the U.S. and their subscribers will have access to an unprecedented amount of SEC content across all platforms. Subscribers receiving the live linear network via a multichannel subscription will also have access to the network on PCs, tablets, smartphones and select gaming devices like Xbox. Additional games and coverage will be available through an authenticated digital offering. Fans looking to learn more about how to get the SEC Network can visit GetSECNetwork.com for more information.
“We are pleased to be involved with the SEC and ESPN at the very beginning of this great alliance,” said Jeff Weber, President of Content and Advertising Sales, AT&T. “As the fastest growing and most advanced pay TV service, we want to bring our customers the highest value and most compelling product that we possibly can. Access to the SEC Network, across multiple platforms, will only increase the demand for U-verse.”
ESPN’s Justin Connolly, formerly senior vice president, ESPN affiliate sales and marketing, will oversee the network’s day-to-day operations. The network will originate from ESPN’s Charlotte, N.C., offices with additional staff located at the company’s Bristol, Conn., headquarters. Staff announcements and additional details will be made in the coming months.
There it is for you.
ESPN has announced that six Big Ten football games will be played in primetime on Saturday nights either on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 this fall. Three games will have Ohio State, two games involve Michigan and Northwestern and Wisconsin get one each. Of course, independent Notre Dame is involved in two of those games, one against Michigan on September 7 (expect that to be an ABC game) and again in the following week against Purdue. The final game of the ABC/ESPN/ESPN2 Big Ten primetime schedule will be on October 26 when Penn State takes on Ohio State at the Horseshoe in Columbus at 8 p.m. ET.
Take a look at what the Alleged Worldwide Leader is saying about this.
ESPN announced six Big Ten Conference college football games for Saturday prime-time telecasts on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 during the 2013 season. Each game includes at least one team ranked in an early ESPN.com preseason top 25 poll for 2013: No. 1 Ohio State three times, No. 9 Michigan twice, and No. 24 Northwestern and No. 25 Wisconsin once each. Two of the telecasts will involve a Big Ten member hosting independent Notre Dame, which is ranked No. 10 in the ESPN.com poll. Additional games will be announced in the coming months. Highlights:
- An ESPN platform will televise a Big Ten matchup in prime time five of six straight Saturdays from September 7 to October 12.
- Ohio State, the only Football Bowl Subdivision team to finish the 2012 campaign undefeated at 12-0, will play three night games: against defending Conference champion Wisconsin (September 28), at Northwestern (October 5) and against Penn State (October 26).
- ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 will televise Notre Dame at Michigan in prime time on September 7, marking only the second night game at the Big House since its opening in 1927. The first, a 35-31 victory over Notre Dame in 2011, was ESPN’s most-viewed and highest-rated regular-season college football game that season, averaging 7,541,000 viewers and a 4.5 U.S. rating (5.2 ESPN coverage rating). In addition, Purdue will host Notre Dame the following Saturday, September 14.
- Penn State will host Michigan on October 12 and visit Ohio State on October 26.
2013 Big Ten Schedule as of April 29 (additional selections will be announced):
Date Time (ET) Game Network Sat, Sep 7 8 p.m. No. 10 Notre Dame at No. 9 Michigan * ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 Sat, Sep 14 8 p.m. No. 10 Notre Dame at Purdue ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 Sat, Sep 28 8 p.m. No. 25 Wisconsin at No. 1 Ohio State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 Sat, Oct 5 8 p.m. No. 1 Ohio State at No. 24 Northwestern ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 Sat, Oct 12 5 p.m. No. 9 Michigan at Penn State ESPN or ESPN2 Sat, Oct 26 8 p.m. Penn State at No. 1 Ohio State ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
* Previously announced
One more ESPN-centric post coming up.
Reported in Richard Deitsch’s Monday morning media column at SI.com, NBC will replace long-time Notre Dame football voice Tom Hammond with Dan Hicks. An announcement will be formally made on Monday. Hammond has been calling Notre Dame football on NBC dating back to 1992. He’ll remain with the Peacock as the host of horse racing’s Triple Crown as well as the main voice for figure skating and track and field.
Hicks will continue has the lead announcer on the PGA for NBC as well as maintain his Olympic duties in 2014 and 2016.
His first Notre Dame duties will come this weekend when he calls the Notre Dame Spring Football game on NBC. He’ll then call seven Fighting Irish home games this season starting August 31.
More on this when the official press release is out.
CBS which includes CBS, CBS Sports Network and Showtime saw a total of 15 Sports Emmy nominations for 2012. Among the major nods include Jim Nantz for Play-by-Play, James Brown for Studio Host the NFL Today and Inside the NFL, Boomer Esiason in Studio Analyst, The Masters® Army-Navy for Live Sports Special, the NCAA Tournament in Outstanding Playoff Coverage and CBS Sports Network gets its first ever nomination.
Take a look at the CBS Sports press release.
CBS Sports’ Coverage of NCAA Tournament with Turner; Masters® and Army-Navy Game Also Receive Nods to Highlight Network’s Other Nominations
CBS Sports Network Garners First Ever Sports Emmy Nomination
Jim Nantz, James Brown and Boomer Esiason lead the list of CBS’s 15 nominations for the 2012 Sports Emmy Awards to be presented on May 7 in New York City. Nantz, who won the 2008 and 2009 Emmy Award for Outstanding Sports Personality – PLAY-BY-PLAY, once again earned a nomination in that category. Brown’s nomination also is in the category in which he won in 2007, Outstanding Sports Personality – STUDIO HOST, for THE NFL TODAY and INSIDE THE NFL on Showtime, while Esiason earned a nomination for Outstanding Sports Personality – STUDIO ANALYST.
Among the other nominations for CBS Sports include multiple nods with its partner Turner Sports for their joint coverage of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship: Outstanding PLAYOFF COVERAGE, Outstanding OPEN/TEASE (Brackets Everywhere) and Outstanding SPORTS PROMOTIONAL ANNOUNCEMENT-INSTITUTIONAL (Brackets Everywhere).
CBS Sports’ coverage of the Masters® earned multiple nominations for Outstanding LIVE SPORTS SPECIAL, Outstanding TECHNICAL TEAM REMOTE (CBS Sports/ESPN3D) and Outstanding SPORTS PROMOTIONAL ANNOUNCEMENT-INSTITUTIONAL (The Voice of Golf; Confessions, Navigation, Costumes).
In addition, the Network’s coverage of the Army-Navy football game received a nomination for Outstanding LIVE SPORTS SPECIAL. And its coverage of Monster Energy Supercross earned a nod for Outstanding LIVE EVENT TURNAROUND.
CBS Sports Network earned its first ever Emmy nomination for Outstanding EDITED SPORTS SPECIAL (One Heartbeat).
CBS Sports and Showtime’s produced INSIDE THE NFL earned nominations for Outstanding STUDIO SHOW – WEEKLY; and Outstanding SHORT FEATURE (One Last Wish: The Danny Webber Story). Showtime also earned a nomination, along with MLB Productions, for its series The Franchise: A Season with the Miami Marlins for Outstanding EDITED SPORTS SERIES/Anthology.
One more Sports Emmy press release and we’re done.
This was the conference that NBC wanted and lost. ESPN and what’s left of the old Big East have announced a new agreement spanning from 2013-14 to the 2019-20 season. The 2013-14 season will be a transition year as Louisville will play its final season in Whatever The Big East Will Be Named, then the contract really kicks in for 2014-15.
Brett McMurphy of ESPN says the payout to the conference will be $126 million/year down $4 million from the original agreement as the Catholic 7 leaves and takes the Big East name with it.
Under the contract, ESPN gets the rights to all conference football and men’s basketball games. The basketball conference championship game will be aired either on ESPN or ABC. Women’s basketball games fall under a similar scope under the control of various ESPN platforms.
Other sports like baseball and softball can be aired on an ESPN platform.
Here’s the press release.
ESPN and the current Big East Conference, soon to be renamed, will continue their relationship of more than three decades with a multiyear, multimedia rights agreement. The agreement grants ESPN exclusive worldwide distribution rights across all media and will continue ESPN’s coverage of the conference’s football, basketball and more through 2019-20. In addition, video subscribers of ESPN will have access to the games via digital and mobile devices.
ESPN’s existing football agreement with the conference runs through 2013 while the 2013-14 season will act as a bridge year for the conference’s basketball rights. Commencing in 2014-15, football, basketball and other sports will be under one agreement through 2019-20 granting ESPN rights to all conference contests (not included in CBS’s basketball rights package) including at least 66 football games and 170 men’s basketball games which will be made available annually across ESPN, ESPN2, ABC, ESPNU, ESPNEWS and ESPN3, and via limited regional and national sublicense. In addition, select women’s basketball regular-season and postseason contests as well as other conference-sponsored sports will be presented throughout the year.
“This agreement signifies our commitment to ensuring superior content across any device for many more years,” said John Skipper, ESPN President. “Sports fans everywhere, including the schools’ most passionate followers, will enjoy our extensive multi-sport offerings.”
Commissioner Mike Aresco said, “I am delighted that the current Big East Conference, which will be renamed and rebranded, will be partnering with ESPN well into the future,” said Aresco. “The extraordinary exposure provided by the ESPN networks will give viewers the opportunity to see the exciting competition and intense rivalries that will characterize our Conference.”
Included in the new agreement:
Complete coverage: Every conference-controlled football game will be available via a television or digital platform.
Complete Coverage: Every conference-controlled men’s basketball game will be available via a television or digital platform.
Conference Championship: The conference championship will be televised on ABC or ESPN.
Women’s Basketball: Conference-controlled women’s basketball regular-season games will appear on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and/or ESPN3. The championship of the conference tournament will be televised on ESPN or ESPN2, with the semifinals on ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU.
ESPN will have the rights to action from other conference-sponsored men’s and women’s sports such as baseball and softball.
ESPN OUTLETS: Rights include conference content featured across ESPN entities including exclusive live games on ESPN3. In addition, fans will be able to find select action on ESPN Deportes, ESPN International and more. All conference programming on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater will be available online via ESPNnetworks.com and on mobile devices via the Watch ESPN app to fans who receive their video subscription through an affiliated provider.
ESPN can sublicense conference games across all sports for regional and national distribution.
That is all.
During the event that introduced US version of Fox Sports 1 to the world (let’s not forget the original Fox Sports 1 in Australia), we learned that the network has been built upon what Fox is calling “7 Sports Pillars,” College Basketball, College Football, MLB, NASCAR, NFL, Soccer and UFC fights.
Let’s go over what each pillar will bring to Fox Sports 1.
While it was not formally announced on Tuesday, we can expect Fox Sports 1 to be the official cable home of the new Big East, those “Catholic 7″ basketball-only schools to be joined by Butler and Xavier from the A-10 and maybe even Creighton from the Missouri Valley. The new Big East will join the Big 12, Conference USA and Pac-12 on Fox Sports 1. Expect to see basketball games in the winter on Monday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.
Games from C-USA, the Big 12 and Pac-12 will be on Thursday nights as well as triple and quadrupleheaders on Saturdays. In addition, Erin Andrews will host a Saturday morning pregame show on FS1. The Fox Mothership will continue to air college football games on Saturday nights. The 2013 schedule for Fox includes Notre Dame at Stanford as well as the Big Ten Championship and the Cotton Bowl.
In 2014, Fox’s new contract with Major League Baseball kicks in. Fox Sports 1 will air a full schedule of 26 regular season games which will include games from its Fox Sports Net affiliates. Expect to see plenty of the New York Yankees from YES, the Anaheim Angels from Fox Sports West and the Texas Rangers from Fox Sports Southwest. In addition, Fox Sports 1 will carry two League Division Series and a number of League Championship Series. The LCS was the latest development. Fox’s broadcast schedule will reduce from 24 regular season games this year to 12 in 2014. Fox will still carry the All-Star Game, most of the LCS and the entire World Series.
As Speed converts to Fox Sports 1, its NASCAR coverage will carryover to FS1. This will include the entire Camping World Truck Series and the familiar NASCAR RaceDay and NASCAR Victory Lane programs from Speed. In 2015, selected Sprint Cup races will move to Fox Sports 1 as will the All-Star race. The Daytona 500 Speedweeks festivities which include the Twin 125′s and the Duel will be aired on FS 1.
While Fox Sports 1 doesn’t have the rights to show games, it will have a daily program, Fox Football Daily which will include the cast of Fox NFL Sunday. The show will air daily at 6 p.m. ET. Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, Jay Glazer, Gus Johnson, Erin Andrews and Mike Pereira are listed as participants, but as the show evolves, this falls under the category “subject to change.” This show will premiere when Fox Sports 1 launches in August.
It’s expected that Fox will do away with Fox Soccer and convert it to FX2, an all-entertainment channel. With the loss of the English Premier League to NBC, Fox will move the UEFA Champions League, Europa League, FA Cup and CONCACAF events to Fox Sports 1. UEFA Champions League and Europa League will be aired on Tuesday through Thursday afternoons. And when Fox’s contract with FIFA begins in 2015, Fox Sports 1 will air Women’s World Cup games that year and in 2019 and the men in 2018 and 2022. Other soccer leagues that were part of Fox Soccer Plus can be expected to be dispersed to Fox Sports 2 when that channel launches at a later date.
On Fox Sports 1′s launch date in August, a UFC card will be aired. Also, Fox Sports 1 will be the home to UFC programming on Wednesday nights. During Super Bowl XLVIII week, Fox Sports 1 is expected to have a card the night before the Big Game. Super Bowl Saturday normally has a UFC pay per view, but it’s expected to be aired on FS1 in 2014.
The news about Regis Philbin was confirmed on Monday during his appearance on of all places, “The View.” Regis will be host of “Rush Hour” which will have a panel of guests from the media, sports and fandom. This will air at 5 p.m. ET and lead into Fox Football Daily.
At 11 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1 will air Fox Sports Live, the challenger to ESPN’s venerable SportsCenter. According to the Fox Sports executives, the network will invest heavily into a newsgathering operation that will produce a nightly program that will review the day’s events. A morning edition of Fox Sports Live will begin airing in January.
The Fox Sports Net affiliates and local Fox TV stations will be encouraged to contribute reports to Fox Sports Live.
It’s been seen on the Cotton Bowl and on the Daytona 500, the double box that will air commercials and also show live action so viewers don’t miss anything. Reviews on this has been mixed thus far, but I expect this to win fans over during NASCAR coverage.
Fox Sports Go will be an mobile and tablet app that will stream live events from Fox Sports, Fox Sports 1 and the Fox Sports Net affiliates. Subscribers to participating cable and satellite providers will have to authenticate in order to watch the events on their mobile device.
And there in a nutshell is what you’ll see on Fox Sports 1 when it launches on August 17.
The worst kept secret in sports media finally gets pushed from behind the curtain and will be officially unveiled to advertisers and the media on Tuesday. Fox Sports officials will be at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York to tell the world what the average fan will see on the new Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2 networks when they launch this summer.
Unlike previous Fox launches when the broadcast company started completely new channels from scratch, it’s using existing infrastructure from Speed to form Fox Sports 1 and from Fuel TV to build Fox Sports 2.
And using existing partnerships with Major League Baseball, NASCAR, the Big 12 and PAC-12 along with UFC, the channels will have an extensive inventory of live sports to show. Plus, with an expected partnership with the breakaway “Catholic 7″ from the old Big East conference to form a new Big East conference, Fox Sports 1 and 2 will have live college basketball games in November.
Over the last year, Fox has flown under the radar to bring its new networks into fruition. While NBC Sports has attempted to add major sports to its arsenal, Fox has used its relationships to convince its partners to sign off on shuffling inventory from the Fox Television Network to its cable channels. As a result, Fox will have 14 MLB games starting in 2014 compared to 24 this year. Also, several NASCAR Sprint Cup races will go to Fox Sports 1 after being on Fox for several years.
While it appears Fox is positioning itself as a bona fide challenger to ESPN, it still has a long way to go if it truly wants to mount a fight. Even so, Fox and ESPN have become dance partners in college sports with the Big 12, the Pac-12 and look to partner with the old Big East and the Catholic 7. Just last year, ESPN and Fox filed a joint bid for the English Premier League before losing out to NBC. So as Fox starts the new sports networks, it’s also forming an Unholy Alliance with the one network that it along with CBS, NBC and to a certain extent, Turner Sports are hoping to knock down.
In addition to the live games, Fox Sports 1 will have talk shows. Regis Philbin announced on “The View” Monday that he will host a show on the network that will be modeled after “The View” itself. John Ourand of Sports Business Journal reported last year that Jay Mohr, a host on Fox Sports Radio, was in talks for his own series on FS1.
With Tuesday’s announcement, Fox Sports 1 and 2 become the New Kids on the Sports Block. The key for success will be clearance among increasing militant cable and satellite providers which are balking at paying high subscriber fees due to sports rights. Richard Sandomir and Amy Chozick of the New York Times report that Fox is seeking $1 per subscriber for FS1. After the euphoria of launching a new cable network comes the reality of gaining cable carriage. We’ve yet to hear if Fox has been able to get agreements from the major providers like Bright House, Cablevision, Comcast, Cox, DirecTV, Dish, Suddenlink and Time Warner among others. If Fox Sports 1 and 2 are cleared throughout the country, then it will be a major hurdle that will be out of the way.
And if Fox Sports 1 is able to get an NFL package and NBA games to add to their other properties, then the road for the networks will be paved with gold. Right now, the networks will be given a head start with MLB, NASCAR, college football and basketball, MMA, World Cup Soccer and additional soccer games coming Fox Soccer. If more properties can be added, then Fox will be in very good position as it heads into the next decade.
The journey for the new Fox Sports entities begins on Tuesday. Whether it will be smooth sailing or a stormy ride will be determined over the next few years.
When do you bury news? On the weekend!
When do the networks put out terse statements on lost sports properties? Either late at night or on the weekends, like 3:19 p.m. ET on Saturday.
NBC has conceded losing the Big East Conference to ESPN which matched the Peacock’s offer this week. There was a slight chance that NBC could have picked up the conference had ESPN not worked out the number of exposures on its networks, but apparently that was done today.
In a tweet, NBC Sports Public Relations put out a ten word statement not even mentioning ESPN.
Statement on the Big East: “We wish the Big East and its incumbent partners well.”
— NBCSportsPR (@NBCSportsPR) February 23, 2013
ESPN public relations maven Mike Soltys tweeted a 17-word statement announcing the retention of The Big East.
ESPN has matched an offer for the Big East and we look forward to continuing our relationship.
— Mike Soltys (@espnmikes) February 23, 2013
NBC Sports Network had offered a six year deal to air Big East football and basketball games at a fee of over $20 million annually. Games would have been aired on both NBC Sports Network and the NBC mothership. We have yet to get details from ESPN, but look for games to be shared between ESPN and its unholy ally, Fox Sports, namely Fox Sports 1.
The Big East has worked out a separate contract with CBS for basketball.
I’ll provide more details as they become available.
From John Ourand in today’s Sports Business Daily, ESPN has matched NBC’s offer to air Big East football and basketball. Earlier this week, it was reported that the Big East came to an agreement with NBC Sports Network, a deal with more $20 million annually over six years. Today was the deadline for ESPN to match the offer which it apparently has.
However, ESPN has to work out the number of exposures on its network and on other entities. If ESPN gains the contract, expect the network to sublicense football and basketball games to Fox Sports 1. The Big East has worked out a separate agreement with CBS for basketball.
The conference presidents have to sign off on the deal. If the number of exposures cannot be worked out, then the contract reverts to NBC Sports so there’s hope, albeit slim for the Peacock to attain its first major college conference. If NBC wins out, some football games would be shuffled to the broadcast network. According to Ourand, ESPN would not send any games to ABC.
So there’s still some work to be done if ESPN is to keep the Big East. If it does, we can expect the unholy alliance between ESPN and Fox to be in effect once again to prevent NBC from gaining a foothold in college sports. The alliance works for the Big 12 and the Pac-12. However, if NBC Sports Network can somehow get the Big East, it would have plenty of live inventory from football and basketball and perhaps some Olympic Sports during the spring.
If NBC is shut out, then it will be a long wait for the next college contract which will be the Big Ten in the second half of this decade.
We’ll be keeping an eye on this story as it develops.
This is all speculation right now. We’ll keep you up to date
In lieu of linkage which has been sorely lacking, my sincere apologies, I give a sports media notebook which includes some links for you. Life has gotten in the way and you’ve responded by not visiting the site. It tells me you want fresh content so I’ll do my best to provide that to you as often as I can.
- John Ourand of Sports Business Journal tweeted on Tuesday that Fox Sports 1 will be unveiled to advertisers in an upfront presentation on March 5. I expect a full press release and perhaps an embeddable video to place on this site. Fox Sports 1 will take over Speed’s infrastructure on many participating cable and satellite providers in August and its companion channel, Fox Sports 2 will bump Fuel TV from existence.
The new Fox Sports networks will certainly change the sports media landscape almost immediately.
- Also from Ourand with Michael Smith in this week’s SBJ, we find the Big East looks like it has deals in place with NBC Sports Network for football and basketball and CBS for basketball as well. ESPN does have the right to match the offers, but for now, let’s assume that NBCSN has its first pickup of a major college conference, content it desperately needs.
I do expect NBCSN to be a major player for the second half of the NASCAR Sprint Cup season and to perhaps take the Nationwide Series. NBCSN does have some summer holes to fill and NASCAR would fit the bill.
- In the Chicago Tribune, Robert Channick reports that the Cubs have exercised a clause to renegotiate its media rights deal with WGN-TV. The Cubs and WGN have been together since 1948 and has had a national following since the 1980′s when ‘GN followed WTBS and became a Superstation on cable. Since then, WGN’s parent company, Tribune Co. has split the station into two feeds, WGN America which is on many cable and satellite providers across the country and WGN, Channel 9 in Chicago.
Earlier this week, Paul Sullivan in the Tribune reported that the Cubs may choose to leave WGN after the 2014 season and opt to go all-cable, however, it appears the two sides will at least discuss a new contract and Tribune Co. says it wants to keep the Cubs. Major factors in these new talks are the recent megadeals by the New York Yankees, Cleveland MLB Team and the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Cubs also need money to help offset costs for renovations to Wrigley Field.
The Cubs are also on Comcast SportsNet in a deal forged with the White Sox, Bulls and the Chicago NHL Team.
We’ll be keeping an eye on what transpires. No matter what happens, the Cubs will be getting more money. A whole lot more.
- I’m saddened to hear that Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Sara Ganim is being harassed by the Paterno “Truthers”. The Philadelphia Magazine blog, the Philly Post reports that Ganim is being subjected to sexist taunts on Twiiter by the people who refuse to believe the Freeh Report. Ganim did very solid reporting on the Jerry Sandusky case and her stories led to the downfall of the former Penn State football defensive coordinator, coach Joe Paterno and the football program, but it does not allow for people to use Twitter to harass and threaten. C’mon, now.
- A Phoenix Coyote fan who is a pediatrician for an Arizona network of hospitals got angry at Adrian Dater, the Colorado Avalanche beat reporter for the Denver Post and told him on Twitter to “go catch a movie in Aurora” and “join Jessica for all I care.” That is in reference to last year’s movie theater shooting in Aurora, CO that left 12 people dead including Jessica Ghawi and 58 others injured.
After outrage from Dater and others, the pediatrician made his account private and then subsequently deleted his account. In addition, his employer has released a statement saying the actions are under review.
I understand getting emotional over your team, but is it necessary to tell a reporter to get shot and wish him dead? Is this what we have become? The last two stories about trolling reporters through Twitter almost leaves me no hope for humanity. Luckily, I remain an optimist, but stories like these make it tough.
We’re done here for now.
I’ll do some linkage here.
USA Today’s Michael Hiestand says Dick Vitale finally gets to call the NCAA Final Four, but for an international audience.
John Ourand at Sports Business Daily reports that Fox is in talks with Regis Philbin to host a show on Fox Sports 1.
Ed Sherman at The Sherman Report wonders if having Gus Johnson on the World Cup will work for Fox.
Marisa Guthrie of the Hollywood Reporter talks with CBS Sports Head Honcho Sean McManus about the network’s handling of Super Bowl XLVII.
Rick Kissell at Variety says the Super Bowl put CBS on top of the 18-49 ratings demographic and probably put it there to stay for the rest of the TV season.
George Winslow of Broadcasting & Cable says online streaming of the Super Bowl set a record.
Mike Reynolds of Multichannel News has NBC looking forward to the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Anthony CrupiCrupiCrupi of Adweek says CBS did not experience a post-Super Bowl bounce on Monday.
Brian Steinberg of Advertising Age notes that Fox is already pitching advertisers for Super Bowl XLVIII in New Jersey.
Bill Cromwell from Media Life Magazine says Budweiser’s touching Clydesdale Super Bowl ad was the most popular among the publication’s readers.
Jeff Pfeiffer at Channel Guide says Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl received its highest ratings ever on Sunday.
The Nielsen Wire blog has the final viewing numbers for Super Bowl XLVII on CBS. Still close to my prediction of 108.2 million.
The Tampa Bay Times’ Eric Deggans writing for the Indiana University National Sports Journalism Center says CBS failed to address the main issues facing the National Football League before, during and after its Super Bowl broadcast.
Brandon Costa of Sports Video Group says ESPN has blanketed the country with satellite trucks in order to cover National Signing Day today.
ESPN’s Darren Rovell asks if movie ads were the true winners on Super Bowl Sunday.
The Boston Globe’s Chad Finn writes that former Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield will co-host a new reality show on MLB Network. Wait until you read about the premise.
Richard Sandomir of the New York Times says NBC will begin its Olympics coverage from Sochi a day early.
Newsday’s Neil Best says Lindsay Vonn’s injury at the FIS Alpine Skiing World Championships put a damper on NBC’s Olympic media kickoff event on Tuesday.
Ken Schott of the Schenectady Gazette says Time Warner Cable has added MSG Plus and MSG Plus 2 in the Capital Region.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union notes that Tennis Channel will air Rafael Nadal’s return to tennis today.
Keith Groller of the Allentown (PA) Morning Call feels CBS did not step up to the magnitude of Super Bowl XLVII.
David Zurawik of the Baltimore Sun says some local TV stations did not distinguish themselves during coverage of the Ravens Championship Parade.
David Barron of the Houston Chronicle reports that the Astros are changing radio stations.
Mel Bracht of The Oklahoman says Super Bowl XLVII set a local ratings record.
John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer writes that the Reds will remain on its flagship station and with it, air more Spring Training games.
Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says on his weekly radio show appearance, Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers offered the olive branch to Brett Favre.
Danny Ecker from Crain’s Chicago Business looks at how Windy City businesses fared during Sunday’s Super Bowl.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News looks into Fox’s announcement of using Gus Johnson on soccer.
The Toronto Globe and Mail runs a Canadian Press story reporting that former pitcher Jack Morris will become a Blue Jays TV and radio analyst.
The Canadian Sports Media blog wasn’t happy about CTV cutting off Super Bowl coverage early for the second year in a row.
EPL Talk is not thrilled about having Gus Johnson on soccer.
Jason McIntyre at The Big Lead says SportsNation co-host Charissa Thompson has a new boyfriend and he works with the Alleged Worldwide Leader as well.
In Awful Announcing, Allen Kenney writes that due to ESPN’s high college football rights fees, Disney’s profits fell in the first quarter of its fiscal year.
Dave Kohl at The Broadcast Booth looks at the coverage that National Signing Day is receiving.
And that will conclude our linkage.
It didn’t last long, but it certainly made an impression. It made so much of an impression that it led to a parody Brent Musburger twitter account, “Creepy Brent”. Musburger’s harping on the girlfriend of Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback AJ McCarron, current Miss Alabama Katherine Webb left viewers very uncomfortable. And with cameras cutting away to her at least three times in the first half, I’m surprised Webb and her family didn’t seek an injunction on shots of her for the rest of the game.
ESPN has issued a statement apologizing for Musburger’s remarks. While it doesn’t mention any disciplinary action (it didn’t need any), it does say he does understand that he went too far.
Here’s the statement issued by ESPN from today.
We always try to capture interesting storylines and the relationship between an Auburn grad who is Miss Alabama and the current Alabama quarterback certainly met that test. However, we apologize that the commentary in this instance went too far and Brent understands that.
That’s going to do it.
ESPN is crowing about the overnight numbers for the BCS National Championship Game, a 42-14 drubbing of Notre Dame at the hands of Alabama. The overnight was a 15.7 which is 14% higher than last year’s game between Alabama and LSU. The rating peaked in the 9 p.m.-9:15 p.m. quarter hour which was still in the first quarter, but began dropping once it was apparent that Notre Dame was thoroughly outmatched by the Crimson Tide.
Even with the blowout, this is still highest cable television rating in two years dating back to 2011 BCS National Championship Game.
Had the game been closer, you can imagine this number possibly reaching the high teens or even the low 20′s.
Locally, Birmingham, AL led all markets with a 55.1 number. I thought that would be higher to be honest.
Here’s the blurb from ESPN.
Five-Game Combined Average for BCS Bowls Grew 6 Percent from 2012
ESPN’sBCS National Championship – No. 2 Alabama’s 42-14 victory over No. 1 Notre Dame on Monday evening — delivered a 15.7 overnight rating, a 14 percent increase from the 2012 game between Alabama and LSU (13.8 overnight rating), according to Nielsen. This metered-market rating – the highest for all of cable television in two years, since the January 2011 BCS National Championship on ESPN, helped drive the network’s five-game BCS average to a 9.0 metered market rating. That represents a 6 percent increase over a year ago (8.5 for the five-game average). Additionally, the game was the highest-rated program on Monday, helping ESPN win the night among all networks.
In terms of local markets, the BCS National Championship was the third highest-rated ESPN bowl game telecast on record in Birmingham with a 55.1 rating. Overall, 17 different markets set local ratings records by delivering the highest rating ever for a bowl game on ESPN (records go back to 2000). Last night’s top five rated markets were Birmingham, New Orleans, Knoxville, Nashville and Atlanta. National ratings information, including television and online viewership should be available later today.
That is all.
I’m on the train heading from Kingston, RI to New York City. I’ll be at a sports media event at the world-famous CBS Broadcast Center. If you follow me on Twitter or on my Facebook page, I’ll be live tweeting if possible from the event.
In the meantime, Amtrak’s wifi service is as fast as dial-up so if I try to do linkage, it’ll take me longer than the entire trip from Kingston to NYC to complete, so in lieu of links, I’ll provide a long overdue thoughts post. If you’ve been a regular visitor to the site, then you’ll know they come in bullet form. Let’s get cracking.
- The game was a blowout and was virtually over by the coin toss, but that didn’t stop ESPN from giving it all during Monday night’s BCS National Championship Game. While Alabama thoroughly dominated Notre Dame in all facets, Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit were honest and forthright throughout. They didn’t try to use hyperbole to keep viewers by hoping for a comeback. When the Crimson Tide scored its fourth touchdown in the first half to go up, 28-0, Musburger declared the game over. And in a halftime interview with Heather Cox, Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly answered honestly, “Maybe Alabama doesn’t come back in the second half. It’s all Alabama.”
ESPN’s pictures were stellar. Replays were clear and when a potential challenge wasn’t made, the network quickly brought in a rules analyst who explained why a review wasn’t necessary.
Yes, Brent Musburger creeped people out with his gushing over Miss Alabama Katherine Webb who’s also Crimson Tide quarterback A.J. McCarron’s girlfriend was over the top. And the four cutaways (by my count) helped to increase her Twitter following to over 100 thousand. That’s the power of being seen on a high profile game. But as people were raking Musburger as a creepy old man, former ABC, CBS and CNN anchor Kathleen Sullivan quickly came to his defense.
I’ve known Brent Musburger since working with him in ’76. He hasn’t oogled a woman since Jayne Kennedy.
— kathleen sullivan (@kathleennewsie) January 8, 2013
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Brent drool over a woman in the crowd. Lest we forget Brent going gaga over Jenn Sterger at a Florida State game in 2009.
Well, as we move from Brent’s oogling to the ESPN production, overall it went as well as it could considering the circumstances. Before the game, there were predictions that the game could set a cable viewership record had the game been close, but with Alabama establishing its authority early and often, that seems to be out the window. Although ESPN is saying the overnight numbers are way up over year.
I’ll give ESPN a B for its efforts. The game was a D, but that’s not ESPN’s fault.
- A story surfaced (subscription required) in yesterday’s Sports Business Journal that Fox Sports 1 (when it finally begins operation) can tap the Fox local regional sports networks to fill its MLB schedule. Fox Sports 1 will air 40 MLB games beginning in 2014 with the Fox mothership airing just 12 games. John Ourand of SBJ reports that 26 of those games will be from the local Fox Sports Net affiliates which have rights to MLB teams. Like the old days when FX had the rights to Saturday night games in the aughts, Fox Sports 1 will pick up games from one of the Fox Sports Net affilates. The key is rather than be blacked out in the local markets as was the case with FX, the local RSN will be blacked out and fans will have to watch the locally RSN-produced game on Fox Sports 1. So if Fox Sports 1 airs a Yankees-Angels game, YES and Fox Sports West in the home markets would be blacked out and fans would have to find FS1 to see it. How the financials will be worked out to compensate the RSN’s for loss of local revenue has yet to be worked out. And with the late-2012 purchases of YES and Sports Time Ohio, this new provision would affect them as well.In addition, Fox/FS1 will be able to air as many as 18 New York Yankees games a season thanks to its purchase of 49% of the YES Network. This will be the case for all of the teams to which Fox has the rights. However, for a non-Fox team like the New York Mets, Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies, Fox will only have rights to 8 games. Of those 26 locally FSN games, a team can be seen as many as 10 times. For the nationally produced Fox/Fox Sports 1 games, a team can appear no more than 8 times so you get the picture of the 18 Yankees games.
It’s an amazing story and one that is going to confuse fans at the beginning when the new MLB contracts begin in 2014.
- Last week, this site began hearing word that the usual NFL on Fox “B” team of Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston and Tony Siragusa would not be working one of the NFL Divisional Playoff games this weekend and would be replaced by Thom Brennaman, Brian Billick and Laura Okmin. Fox confirmed the move to Newsday’s Neil Best last week. Why did Fox make the move? A Fox spokesman told Neil that the network wanted to give a new team an opportunity to call the playoff game. But was there another reason? Is there smoke here?We eventually learned that Brennman, Billick and Okmin would work the Seattle-Atlanta game on Sunday.
Sports Rantz speculates there could be a reason behind the move, but there could be another as well as in an issue of Sports Illustrated, Richard Deitsch listed Albert, Moose and Goose among his three worst NFL announcing teams this season.
Whatever the reason for the move, all we know is that we won’t have that trio this weekend on any of Fox’s games.
While I like Kenny Albert and Daryl Johnston, I can do without Tony Siragusa, although Goose is good on DIY Network’s Man Caves.
That’s going to finish things for us for now. I’ll see if I can post some press releases on my way back from New York.
It’s been way too long since you’ve seen linkage on this site. This has been the main mission of Fang’s Bites since the beginning, but too often, I get roped into doing family stuff and it prevents me from getting on here until late.
I hope to rectify that. So without further delay, here’s the linkage.
I’ll begin with Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch who looks at tonight’s ESPN production of the BCS National Championship Game and he breaks news that former Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine will co-host a daily NBC Sports Radio show.
From The Sherman Report, Ed Sherman talks with ESPN’s Brent Musburger about retirement.
John Ourand of Sports Business Journal says thanks to its parent company buying into YES Network, Fox Sports will have the rights to as many as 18 New York Yankees games for its national MLB broadcasts (for now, subscription required).
Tripp Mickle of Sports Business Daily writes that DirecTV is dropping NASCAR Hot Pass due to the high cost and low demand.
ESPN’s Darren Rovell reports that the “Catholic 7″, the breakaway basketball schools from the Big East, is negotiating a megabucks deal with Fox Sports.
Nathan Savin Scott of USA Today lists the best sports commercials of 2012.
Mike Reynolds at Multichannel News says tonight’s BCS Championship Game could set an all-time viewership record for ESPN and cable TV.
The extremely warped Anthony Crupi (he’ll even admit this) of Adweek writes that the NFL’s regular season ratings were down slightly from last year, but it delivers an audience unlike any other programming.
Friend of Fang’s Bites Michael McCarthy at Advertising Age notes that college football is close to passing baseball as the nation’s second most popular sport.
Natalie Zmuda of Ad Age says Pepsi wants to make you, yes you, part of its Super Bowl ad.
Mark J. Miller at BrandChannel notes how a Nike ad campaign helped to nudge the NHL into ending its lockout.
Toni Fitzgerald from Media Life Magazine wonders if the ratings will return for the NHL now that its lockout has been resolved.
SBNation’s Steve Lepore reports that Michelle Beadle’s new show, The Crossover, will replace NBC Sports Talk later this month.
David Rogers over at Awful Announcing scolds NHL Network for not covering one second of the end of the lockout.
At the Indiana University National Sports Journalism Center, Wheat Hotchkiss (I like this name) delves into ESPN’s production of the BCS National Championship Game in South Flordia.
EPL Talk reviews Fox’s first-ever broadcast of an FA Cup game.
Will Leitch at Sports on Earth says NBC Sports Network’s ratings may be low, but at least it’s trying to be the anti-ESPN.
Chad Finn from the Boston Globe writes about Bobby Valentine’s new foray into daily sports radio.
Brian Stelter at the New York Times says rising sports fees are causing cable providers to drop lower performing channels.
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post needs to stop watching television.
Newsday’s Neil Best says there’s too much sports television and radio for the average fan to keep track of. Well put, Neil.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union says Golf Channel has had to adjust its schedule for the weather-delayed Tournament of Champions.
Ken McMillan of the Middletown (NY) Times Herald-Record says CBS Sports Radio has a home in the Hudson Valley.
Keith Groller with the Allentown (PA) Morning Call talks with an Eastern Pennsylvania native who’s been covering Notre Dame for the last six years.
David Zurawik of the Baltimore Sun feels CBS did not get the job done covering yesterday’s Colts-Ravens game.
David says yesterday’s Colts-Ravens game received the highest rating in the Charm City since last year’s Super Bowl.
Dan Steinberg from the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog has the national media reaction to DC NFL Team head coach Mike Shanahan’s decision to keep quarterback Robert Griffin III on the field despite him seemingly being hurt until an injury that ended his game.
Dan says a local sports radio morning show now gets an opportunity on TV.
Tom Jones at the Tampa Bay Times has the winners and losers in the NHL Lockout.
Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald has some info from ESPN on tonight’s BCS National Championship Game.
Mike Herndon of the Birmingham (AL) News says ESPN could not have asked for a better matchup in the BCS National Championship Game.
Jon Solomon of the Birmingham News looks into the behind-the-scenes for ESPN’s telecast of Alabama-Notre Dame.
David Barron with the Houston Chronicle says Saturday’s Bengals-Texans local rating matched last year’s Wild Card playoff game number.
David writes that former Houston Astros broadcaster Alan Ashby will return to the team as its TV analyst on Comcast SportsNet.
WDIV-TV in Detroit had the suspended Rob Parker from ESPN’s First Take in his first TV interview since he was taken off the air for his comments on DC NFL Team QB Robert Griffin III (starts at 6:15). h/t to Richard Deitsch for the link.
Dusty Saunders of the Denver Post says a Rocky Mountain region sportscaster has plenty of memories that include the Broncos.
Joe Flint of the Los Angeles Times writes that the NFL’s ratings have slipped a bit from last season, but they still remain king of all television.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News has the five things he learned from the weekend.
Tom also has the SoCal sports calendar for this week.
Bruce Dowbiggin from the Toronto Globe and Mail asks with the NHL Lockout over, what’s in it for the fans?
Sports Media Watch notes that the overnight rating for the Cincinnati-Houston NFL Wild Card Game on NBC was up from last year.
SMW says NBC’s nightcap of Vikings-Packers was down slightly from last year.
SMW tells us that Seattle-Washington had the third highest overnight for an NFL Wild Card game since 1999.
And for Indy-Baltimore on CBS, the overnight number was very good.
And that’s going to be it for now.
Tonight, a non-BCS bowl takes center stage on the college football scene. The Cotton Bowl live from Arlington, TX will hit the air at 8 p.m. Gus Johnson and Charles Davis will have the call from high above Cowboys Stadium. Roaming the sidelines for the Fox Television Network will be Julie Alexandria and Petros Papadakis.
Fox will have a half-hour pregame show hosted by Erin Andrews with analysts Eddie George and Joey Harrington.
We have the particulars of the game below. The Fox press release is for your perusal.
HEISMAN TROPHY WINNER JOHNNY MANZIEL & NO. 9 TEXAS A&M BATTLE NO. 11 OKLAHOMA IN 77th COTTON BOWL CLASSIC ON FOX
Gus Johnson, Charles Davis, Petros Papadakis & Julie Alexandria Call Action Live From Cowboys Stadium
Former Heisman Trophy Winner Eddie George Interviews Manziel During Special 30-Minute Pregame Show
New York, NY – Two of college football’s top teams battle in a prime time showdown this Friday, Jan. 4, (7:30 PM ET) on FOX as the 9th ranked Texas A&M Aggies travel to Cowboys Stadium to take on the 11th ranked Oklahoma Sooners in one of the most-anticipated college football bowl games this season.
“Behind the BCS championship game, this is arguably the best matchup of the entire bowl season,” said FOX Sports President Eric Shanks. “The Cotton Bowl is rich in history and we’re honored to once again showcase this terrific event to America on Friday night.”
FOX COLLEGE FOOTBALL’S lead broadcast team of play-by-play announcer Gus Johnson and analyst Charles Davis are once again joined on the broadcast by on-field analyst Petros Papadakis and game reporter Julie Alexandria. Additionally, FOX COLLEGE FOOTBALL rules analyst Mike Pereira is on-site in the broadcast booth to offer his unique perspective and educate viewers on any controversial calls that may come up during the game. Best known for his expertise during his tenure as VP of officiating for the NFL, Pereira spent 14 years officiating college football and regularly serves as FOX’s college football rules analyst throughout the network’s regular season coverage.
FOX Sports’ Cotton Bowl Classic 30-minute pregame show is hosted by Erin Andrews alongside analysts Eddie George and Joey Harrington. George, a Heisman Trophy winning standout running back at The Ohio State University, ranks among the top three in school history in rushing yards (3,768), rushing touchdowns (44), 100-yard games (20) and holds school records with five 200-yard outings and 12 consecutive 100-yard games. Harrington was a three-year starter at quarterback for the Oregon Ducks. During his senior year in 2001, Harrington threw for 2,414 yards and 23 touchdowns to help lead the Ducks to a Pac-10 Conference Title and a victory in the Fiesta Bowl. Harrington was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award that season.
Highlighting the network’s pregame and halftime coverage is a Heisman-to-Heisman sitdown interview with George and Manziel to discuss winning college football’s most prestigious award and expectations for his future. Additionally, Former Secretary of Defense and former president of Texas A&M Robert Gates as well as Oklahoma alum and NBA standout Blake Griffin are featured.
FOX Sports has been the television home of the Cotton Bowl Classic since 1999.
Chuck McDonald produces FOX Sports’ coverage of the 2013 Cotton Bowl Classic. Rich Dewey directs. Don Bui produces all pregame and postgame coverage.
That is all.
The New Year’s Day combination of the Rose Bowl and the Orange Bowl on ESPN finished higher in the overnight ratings than last year. According to ESPN, the combined overnight rating was an 8.0 which is 11% higher than last year’s 7.2 combined overnight for the two games.
Individually, the Rose Bowl featuring Wisconsin and Stanford received an average 9.6 overnight rating, down from the 2012 game which garnered a 9.9. According to Austin Karp of Sports Media Journal, the overnight number for the Rose Bowl could be the lowest dating back to 1985 when ABC carried the game.
The Orange Bowl which had Northern Illinois facing Florida State averaged a 6.5 overnight which is 45% better than 2012 which could only muster a 4.5.
Interesting that ESPN is combining these two bowls and comparing them directly when last year’s combo on New Year’s Day was the Rose and Fiesta. When you compare those two from last year to this year’s the ratings would be down.
We have the ESPN press release.
ESPN’s first two Bowl Championship Series telecasts of 2013 – the Rose Bowl and Orange Bowl on Tuesday, Jan. 1 – combined to average an 8.0 metered market rating, according to Nielsen. The two-game average marks an increase of 11 percent over a 7.2 average overnight rating for the 2012 Rose Bowl and Orange Bowl games.
The 2013 Orange Bowl – No. 12 Florida State beating No. 15 Northern Illinois 31-10 – averaged a 6.5 overnight. With the telecast, ESPN won the night as television’s most-watched network – broadcast or cable. This year’s telecast is 44 percent higher than the 2012 game, a 4.5 rating for No. 23 West Virginia defeating No. 15 Clemson 70-33.
The 2013 Rose Bowl, in which No. 6 Stanford defeated unranked Wisconsin 20-14, earned a 9.6 overnight, the highest on cable television outside of ESPN’s NFL games since the 2012 Bowl Championship Series National Championship. The telecast is down 3 percent from a 9.9 rating for last year’s game, which saw No. 5 Oregon defeat No. 10 Wisconsin 45-38 in the highest scoring Rose Bowl ever.<
In the markets of participating teams, the Rose Bowl averaged a 31.1 rating in Milwaukee, the second highest rating for an ESPN bowl game in the market on record (back to 2000). ESPN’s coverage earned a 12.3 rating in San Francisco, the market’s third highest-rated bowl on ESPN networks. The telecast also averaged a 20.7 in Birmingham, 19.8 in Columbus, 15.6 in Dayton and 14.0 in Portland.
The Orange Bowl averaged an 11.1 overnight in Chicago, the second highest ESPN bowl rating in Chicago on record. It also garnered a 14.1 in Jacksonville and 11.9 in Orlando, marking the fourth and third highest-rated bowl games on ESPN in the markets, respectively. ESPN’s coverage recorded a 19.9 in Birmingham, 11.7 in Oklahoma City and 10.7 in Greenville.
That is all.
As we approach the long-awaited college football playoff in 2015, the BCS is still in effect and ESPN will air the entire five game sequence which includes the National Championship Game on January 7. The BCS begins on Tuesday with the Rose Bowl and the Orange Bowl. It then proceeds to the Sugar Bowl on Wednesday and the Fiesta Bowl on Thursday. It all culminates with the BCS National Championship Game on Monday night as Alabama takes on Notre Dame in South Florida.
ESPN plans extensive coverage of the BCS starting on Tuesday, New Year’s Day with all types of pregame and wraparound programming on several of its platforms on TV, radio, mobiles, tablets and computers.
Let’s take a look at the extensive ESPN press release which details its coverage plans.
Extensive BCS Bowls Coverage Includes ESPNU’s Week of Programming, ESPN Radio Live from South Beach and ESPN Deportes’ Spanish-Language Telecasts
ESPN’s extensive college football programming is culminated by all five of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) matchups, including the BCS National Championship (No. 1 Notre Dame vs. No. 2 Alabama) from Miami Gardens, Fla., Monday, Jan. 7, at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio, ESPN 3D and WatchESPN.
Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit will work their sixth consecutive BCS National Championship game, calling ESPN’s telecast with Saturday Night Football reporter Heather Cox and College GameDay reporter Tom Rinaldi. For the second straight year, ESPN’s Monday Night Football signal caller Mike Tirico will work ESPN Radio’s broadcast with ESPN college football analyst Todd Blackledge and reporters Holly Rowe and Joe Schad: http://es.pn/11VjVQy.
Beginning New Year’s Day, ESPN will provide viewers with daily updates from all the action including all five BCS bowl games. College Football Live at the BCS will be televised daily from 3 – 4 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 2, through Friday, Jan. 4, and again on Monday, Jan. 7, providing all the latest news and analysis of the upcoming matchups. The network’s Emmy Award-winning pre-game show College GameDay will be live from the Rose Bowl, the Sugar Bowl, the Fiesta Bowl and the BCS National Championship where the crew will be joined by guest analysts and current head coaches Urban Meyer (Ohio State) and Kevin Sumlin (Texas A&M): http://es.pn/VCx3UR.
Kicking off 2013, ESPNU will feature its largest on-site presence to-date with seven studio shows from Miami Gardens, Fla. The network’s 74 hours of content begins Tuesday, Jan. 1, and leads into the BCS National Championship. The schedule is punctuated by a marathon of more than 24 hours of BCS-themed content beginning Sunday, Jan. 6, at 10 p.m. and extending until mid-morning Tuesday, Jan. 8: http://es.pn/W5AHXK.
ESPN Radio Shows
Mike & Mike in the Morning (6-10 a.m. ET M-F, simulcast on ESPN2) and SVP & Russillo (1-4 p.m. M-F, simulcast on ESPNEWS 1-3 p.m.) will originate from Miami’s South Beach Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 7-8. Notre Dame alum and morning co-host Mike Golic will watch his sons Mike Jr. and Jake play Monday night against Alabama.
Also, The Herd with Colin Cowherd (10 a.m.-1 p.m. M-F, simulcast on ESPNU) will be in South Beach on January 7, as will Trevor Matich and Brad Edwards, joining Ryen Russillo for a special 2-1/2-hour edition of College GameDay on ESPN Radio at 4 p.m.
Additionally, ESPN Radio will present a 2013 BCS Special hosted by College GameDay’s Russillo, Matich and Edwards. They will be joined by ESPN college football experts, as well as ESPN Radio’s Mikes Golic & Greenberg, Cowherd, Scott Van Pelt, Russillo, and Dari Nowkhah and Mel Kiper Jr. The special will run multiple times the weekend before the title game and will be available for download at ESPNRadio.com.
- ESPN Radio will present exclusive, live national coverage of all BCS contests culminating with the championship game Monday, Jan. 7.
- ESPN Radio has broadcast every BCS bowl game since the inception of the BCS. ESPN Radio’s bowl games – 37 announcers spread across 16 days – has been available to more than 400stations nationwide.
- Internationally, ESPN Radio’s BCS coverage can be heard in Canada (TSN 1050 in Toronto) and the U.S Virgin Islands (WVWI-AM 1000/St. Thomas).
ESPN Deportes is the Spanish-language television home for the BCS. ESPN Deportes, for the first time, will air all five BCS bowls, including the BCS National Championship: http://es.pn/SE1kpt for U.S. Hispanic sports fans.
ESPN International will televise the BCS National Championship live to more than 100 countries, across six continents, reaching more than 100 million households:
- Latin America (49 countries): ESPN networks in Spanish-speaking Latin America, Brazil, and the Caribbean.
- Israel and Sub-Saharan Africa (47 countries): ESPN Israel and ESPN Africa
- PacRim (six countries; 2.6 million households): ESPN PacRim
- Canada (12.5 million households): TSN and RDS
- Asia (22 countries; 176 million households): ESPN China, SE Asia, India, Taiwan, Philippines, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Japan (J Sports 2).
In addition, ESPN America (only European network devoted exclusively to the best in North American sport, available to 19 million homes in more than 40 countries) will broadcast live and exclusive coverage of all five BCS bowls including the title game with all available online through the live and on-demand streaming service ESPNPlayer.com: http://bit.ly/ESPNIntlBowls
- WatchESPN: Every live BCS game on ESPN is accessible on computers, smartphones, tablets and Xbox.
- ESPN3: Replays of every bowl game available shortly after the conclusion of the games.
- ESPN.com: Stories, columns, blogs, video elements and more. The bowls homepage will provide previews and post-game content on every game, as well as an in-depth look at all five BCS bowls with an individual page dedicated to the coverage of each: Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Sugar Bowl and BCS National Championship.
- ESPN Mobile: Clips, highlights, news and scores available through the ScoreCenter app and via the ESPN College Football app.
- Fans can follow @ESPNCFB on Twitter for the latest scores, news and highlights.
ESPN 3D will televise ESPN’s coverage of the Sugar Bowl and the BCS National Championship. In addition, Joe Tessitore and Rod Gilmore will provide extended coverage of the title game during select commercial breaks of the ESPN telecast.
There you have it.
The 79th annual Sun Bowl will air on the CBS Television Network this afternoon. Georgia Tech will take on USC at 2 p.m. today.
Uncle Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson will call the game with Tracy Wolfson manning the sidelines.
This marks the 45th consecutive year that CBS has aired the game in El Paso, TX.
USC Takes on Georgia Tech on Monday, Dec. 31
CBS Sports’ 2012 coverage of college football concludes on New Year’s Eve with the Sun Bowl on Monday, Dec. 31 (2:00-6:00 PM, ET). USC faces Georgia Tech in the 79th annual Sun Bowl, live on the CBS Television Network. This marks the 45th consecutive year CBS Sports broadcasts the match-up from El Paso, Texas.
CBS Sports’ lead college football announce team of Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson call the action from Sun Bowl Stadium. Tracy Wolfson serves as sideline reporter. Craig Silver, CBS Sports’ coordinating producer of college football, produces and Steve Milton directs.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL TODAY, the Network’s pre-game, halftime and post-game studio show, broadcasts live from New York City with host Tim Brando and analysts Spencer Tillman and Tony Barnhart. Vin DeVito produces and Linda Malino directs. Harold Bryant is Executive Producer and Vice President, Production, CBS Sports.
CBS Sports’ broadcast of the Sun Bowl also will be streamed live on CBSSports.com.
That is all.
Starting on January 1, ESPN’s College GameDay will be live from four of the five BCS games including the Big One, the BCS National Championship game in South Florida on January 7.
College GameDay will begin its cross-country odyssey in Pasadena, CA by doing two shows on New Year’s Day live from the Rose Bowl. Chris Fowler, Lee Corso, Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and charlatan Todd McShay will be in Pasadena for the festivities.
The following day, Fowler, Herbstreit and Howard fly to New Orleans for the Sugar Bowl and they’ll be joined by David Pollack.
On January 3, the College Football Final crew of Rece Davis, Lou Holtz and Mark May will hold court at the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, AZ.
College GameDay will skip the Orange Bowl and studiop coverage of the game on New Year’s Night will be produced from ESPN’s World Headquarters in Bristol, CT.
And finally, College GameDay ends its season from the BCS National Championship Game from the Stadium Formerly Known as Joe Robbie. Former ESPN analyst and current Ohio State coach Urban Meyer and Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin will be on the set to provide analysis of Alabama-Notre Dame.
Samantha Ponder (formerly Steele) will also be on hand for College GameDay.
Here’s the official ESPN press release.
Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 1, ESPN College GameDay will be live from the sites of the Rose Bowl, the Sugar Bowl and the Fiesta Bowl. Coverage of the Orange Bowl will originate from ESPN studios in Bristol, Conn. GameDay will end the season live from Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla., on Monday, Jan. 7, from the BCS National Championship for a two-hour show starting at 6 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Throughout the week, a variety of ESPN analysts will sit on the GameDay set in the various cities. Host Chris Fowler and analysts Kirk Herbstreit and Desmond Howard will travel from Pasadena to New Orleans with a final stop in Miami Gardens, Fla., for the title game. Additional analyst appearances include Lee Corso, David Pollack, Todd McShay and Samantha (Steele) Ponder.
Rece Davis will take the hosting reins, along with his weekly ESPN studio partners, analysts Lou Holtz and Mark May, from the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Ariz.
The BCS National Championship will add guest analysts including former ESPN commentator and current Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer and Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin, whose team was the only program to top Alabama this season.
College GameDay BCS Schedule
Date Time (ET) Network Location/Analysts Tue, Jan 1 11 a.m. ESPNU Fowler, Herbstreit, Corso, Howard & McShay (Pasadena, Calif.) noon ESPN Wed, Jan 2 7-8 p.m. ESPN Fowler, Herbstreit, Howard & Pollack (New Orleans) Thu, Jan 3 7-8 p.m. ESPN Davis, Holtz & May (Glendale, Ariz.) Mon, Jan 7 6-8 p.m. ESPN Fowler, Herbstreit, Corso, Howard, Pollack, Meyer & Sumlin (Miami Gardens, Fla.)
That does it.
Earlier this month, CBS sent out a press release that its Southeastern Conference package was the highest-rated college football series in 2012. Now ESPN has issued a release that its Saturday Night Football on ABC package was the highest-rated and most-watched series of the year.
According to ESPN, Saturday Night Football averaged a 4.0 rating with an audience of almost 6.52 million. CBS’ SEC package averaged a 3.9 rating. CBS’ press release factored in ABC’s ratings from both Saturday afternoon and evening.
Once again, Birmingham, AL was the top-rated local market for ESPN’s college football coverage averaging 8.9 far outdistancing last year’s 5.9 rating.
We have the press release from ESPN.
ESPN Reaches Hundreds of Millions of Viewers, Heisman Presentation Second Highest Rated Ever,
Birmingham Most-Viewed Market for 12th Straight Year
ESPN’s Saturday Night Football on ABC, the first weekly prime-time college football game on broadcast television, was the highest-rated and most-viewed college football series among all networks carrying college football this season. The weekly package averaged 6,518,000 viewers and a 4.0 rating, and was the most-watched program of the night in viewers on six of its 12 broadcasts this season.
The Saturday Night Football broadcast of Notre Dame defeating USC 22-13 on November 24 was ABC’s second most-viewed and second highest-rated regular-season game since 1991, averaging 16,059,000 viewers and a 9.4 rating. The victory, securing Notre Dame’s spot in the BCS National Championship (against Alabama on January 7 at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN), was second only to ABC’s broadcast of No. 2 Michigan at No. 1 Ohio State (21,037,000 viewers; 14,479,000 households; and a 13.0 rating) on November 18, 2006.
ABC televised four games involving Notre Dame this season, averaging 8,839,000 viewers, 6,100,000 households, and a 5.3 rating. Led by Notre Dame against USC, ABC has televised the three most-viewed and highest-rated regular-season games involving Notre Dame since Florida State on NBC in 1993. The other two games were also against USC: November 25, 2006 (14,647,000 viewers; 10,048,000 households; and a 9.0 rating) and November 30, 1996 (10,847,000 viewers; 7,246,000 households; and a 7.5 rating).
ESPN concluded its extensive regular-season coverage of the 2012 college football season by televising the second most-viewed and second highest-rated Heisman Trophy Presentation telecast ever, averaging 4,902,000 viewers and a 3.5 rating (behind 2009’s average of 5,990,000 viewers and a 4.1 rating).
Most-Extensive Coverage Reaches Millions
For the 2012 college football season, ESPN offered exclusive coverage of more games than every network combined across television and digital platforms, reaching hundreds of millions of fans.
For the season, ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3 covered 306 regular-season Football Bowl Subdivision games exclusively – 195 more than every other national network combined (CBS, FOX, NBC, FX, NBC Sports Network and CBS Sports Network) – involving teams from all 11 conferences, plus independents Notre Dame, BYU, Navy and Army.
Overall, ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 combined to reach more than 187,000,000 viewers for game telecasts. Combining ABC, ESPN, and ESPN2 with ESPNU’s extensive lineup and the networks averaged 2,018,000 viewers for 216 regular-season games. ESPN offered games across every day of the week with select Tuesday and Wednesday matchups and a regular schedule of Thursday, Friday and Saturday telecasts.
ESPN college football content also posted significant usage across digital platforms (ESPN.com, ESPN mobile Web, ScoreCenter, ESPN College Football app, ESPN3, WatchESPN), logging an average minute audience of 163,000 on college football Saturdays. The new ESPN College Football app for Android and iOS devices received 3.4 million downloads this season. On Saturdays, the app averaged 972,000 unique visitors, 1,800,000 visits, 10,600,000 page views and 9:30 per visitor.
Birmingham Takes Top Spot… Again
For the 12th consecutive year, Birmingham was the highest-rated metered market for ESPN’s regular-season telecasts, averaging an 8.9 rating, 89 percent higher than second place Greenville’s 4.7 rating. Eight of last season’s top 10 metered markets finished the 2012 season among the top 10 again. Tulsa (seventh in 2011) and Las Vegas (ninth) both fell out of the top 10, tying at 12th with a 2.5 rating, while Nashville, Memphis and Austin jumped into the top 10.
- All three of Tennessee’s metered markets finished in the top 10 with Knoxville leading the way at third. The home market of the Tennessee Volunteers jumped from 10th last year, averaging a 4.6 rating. Nashville at ninth (3.3 rating) and Memphis at 10th (3.1 rating) were tied at 16 last year with a 2.5 rating.
- Every market in the top 10 but Columbus and Oklahoma City finished with a higher average rating than in 2011, led by Knoxville with a 53 percent increase (4.6 vs. 3.0). Birmingham posted a 51 percent increase over last year’s leading 5.9 rating.
Top 25 Markets for 2012 Top 25 Markets for 2011 No. 1 – Birmingham: 8.9 rating No. 1 – Birmingham: 5.9 rating No. 2 – Greenville: 4.7 rating No. 2 – Oklahoma City: 4.3 rating No. 3 – Knoxville: 4.6 rating Columbus: 4.3 rating No. 4 – New Orleans: 3.7 rating No. 4 – Greenville: 4.1 rating No. 5 – Jacksonville: 3.6 rating No. 5 – New Orleans: 3.4 rating Columbus: 3.6 rating Atlanta: 3.4 rating No. 7 – Atlanta: 3.5 rating No. 7 – Jacksonville: 3.3 rating No. 8 – Oklahoma City: 3.4 rating Tulsa: 3.3 rating No. 9 – Nashville: 3.3 rating No. 9 – Las Vegas: 3.2 rating No. 10 – Memphis: 3.1 rating No. 10 – Knoxville: 3.0 rating Austin: 3.1 rating No. 11 – Dayton: 2.8 rating No. 12 – Tulsa: 2.5 rating No. 12 – Greensboro: 2.7 rating Charlotte: 2.5 rating Austin: 2.7 rating Las Vegas: 2.5 rating Charlotte: 2.7 rating No. 15 – Portland: 2.3 rating Fort Myers: 2.7 rating Richmond: 2.3 rating No. 16 — Pittsburgh: 2.5 rating No. 17 — Orlando: 2.2 rating Nashville: 2.5 rating Dayton: 2.2 rating Norfolk: 2.5 rating Norfolk: 2.2 rating Memphis: 2.5 rating No. 20 – Louisville: 2.1 rating No. 20 – Cleveland: 2.4 rating Tampa-St. Petersburg: 2.1 rating No. 21 — Orlando: 2.3 rating No. 22 — West Palm Beach: 2.0 rating No. 22 — Raleigh-Durham: 2.2 rating Greensboro: 2.0 rating West Palm Beach: 2.2 rating Cleveland: 2.0 rating Detroit: 2.2 rating Ft. Myers: 2.0 rating No. 25 — Cincinnati: 2.0 rating Richmond: 2.0 rating Portland 2.0 rating Kansas City: 2.0 rating Tampa-St. Petersburg: 2.0 rating
That’s all for now.
We received this blurb from ESPN regarding next year’s college football schedule. Notre Dame and Michigan State will air in primetime on September 7, 2013. The network is to be determined.
Michigan’s 2013 matchup against Notre Dame at Michigan Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 7, will be televised in prime time on ESPN or ABC. The kickoff time and network designation will be announced at a later date. It will be the second night game at the Big House since its opening in 1927. The first, a 35-31 victory over Notre Dame in 2011, was televised by ESPN. The telecast was ESPN’s most-viewed and highest-rated regular-season college football game in 2011, averaging 7,541,000 viewers and a 4.5 U.S. rating (5.2 ESPN coverage rating).This will be the third consecutive night game played between the winningest programs in college football history.
That’s going to be it for this post.
With another college football regular season over and another bowl season about to begin, it’s time to go hand out the college football TV awards once again.
As Fox increases its presence in college football thanks to its new contracts with the Big 12 and Pac-12, we have a bigger pool to choose from. And there’s always the usual stalwarts of ESPN and CBS as well. Let’s see who got which award for the 2012 season.
The College GameDay Award for Best Pregame Show – College GameDay, ESPN. This show is the standard for all pregame shows in any sport. Other shows have tried to match the energy of College GameDay’s live remotes and failed. Even the college basketball version of College GameDay pales in comparison to the football edition. The show picked up from the loss of Erin Andrews to Fox, brought in Samantha Steele to host the first hour on ESPNU and did not miss a beat. With host Chris Fowler handing off to Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and Lee Corso, College GameDay has one of the stronger casts for any studio show. Tom Rinaldi’s heartstring-tugging stories provides College GameDay with some of the strongest features in any year. There have been some bizarre moments, but we’ll get to those later. CBS’ College Football Today is also good, but doesn’t come close to GameDay.
Best Studio Show – A new category. I decided to reward a non-pregame show and for this year, I’ll go with College Football Final, ESPN2. Manned by ESPN’s other college football studio crew, Rece Davis, Lou Holtz and Mark May, this show also has very good chemistry. Holtz and May Day appear to barely tolerate each other, but they work off one another quite well. In addition, the show wraps up the day in college football in a very neat package. This season, I purposely stayed up each week to watch the program and was very impressed. And the Final Verdict segment that could be over the top never strays thanks to Davis keeping control. College Football Final is the first winner of this category.
Best Debut – Scott Van Pelt and Samantha Steele (tie). Two very good moves by ESPN. One was to give Scott Van Pelt a role on its college football coverage and the other was bringing in Samantha Steele to replace Erin Andrews on College GameDay. SVP hosted Thursday nights in the studio and also traveled to selected College GameDay sites to provide features and interviews. And by having the SVP & Russillo radio show at the GameDay site, ESPN got some extra promotion and synergy.
By bringing Samantha Steele over from Longhorn Network to host the first hour of College GameDay on ESPNU, it made many fans forget about Erin Andrews who left for Fox. There was no awkward transition and by the end of the season, Steele gave viewers something to look forward to every week. Michelle Beadle tweeted me that Steele would crush on College GameDay and she ended up being right.
The Keith Jackson Award for Best Play-by-Play – Tom Hammond, NBC. Tom has called Notre Dame football for the Peacock annually except for one year dating back to 1994. He’s a very good nuts-and-bolts announcer and with Mike Mayock has formed one of college football’s best announcing teams. Unfortunately, Tom did not get to call the Fighting Irish’s biggest games this season as Oklahoma and USC were aired on ABC and the Pittsburgh game at home was called by Dan Hicks. However, Hammond remains as one of the best announcers and calls a very good game.
Honorable mentions – Kevin Calabro, Pac-12 Network; Gus Johnson, Fox; Sean McDonough, ESPN/ABC; Verne Lundquist, CBS; Brad Nessler, ESPN/ABC, Dave Pasch, ESPN/ABC; Joe Tessitore, ESPN/ABC
The Frank Broyles Award for Best Game Analyst – Chris Spielman, ESPN/ABC. I seemed to get a lot of games that Spielman and Sean McDonough called on ABC this season. Whether it was the luck of the draw or the region where I live, they seemed to be on every Saturday afternoon game. I was impressed by Spielman’s calm on-air demeanor. He didn’t yell nor did he call attention to himself. He spotted trends and did not come off as condescending to the viewer. Spielman impressed me throughout the season.
Honorable mentions – Todd Blackledge, ESPN/ABC; Gary Danielson, CBS; Charles Davis, Fox; Brian Griese, ESPN/ABC; Glenn Mason, Big Ten Network; Mike Mayock, NBC
Best Announcing Team – Dave Pasch/Brian Griese/Jenn Brown, ESPN/ABC. They were assigned to the noon ET game that often involved the Big Ten. Dave Pasch who also calls the Arizona Cardinals on radio is very good. Pasch also is involved with college basketball for ESPN. He and the son of NFL Hall of Famer Bob Griese have formed a strong team in the booth. In fact, the younger Griese often sounds a lot like his dad. Dave and Brian mesh well and are on top of trends. They let the game breathe and allow the action to come to them. We know that Jenn Brown is eye candy, but she does a decent job. I admit I haven’t been a fan of hers over the years, but as long as ESPN keeps her from being flashy, she’s fine.
Honorable mentions – Tom Hammond/Mike Mayock, NBC; Gus Johnson/Charles Davis, Fox; Verne Lundquist/Gary Danielson, CBS; Brad Nessler/Todd Blackledge, ESPN/ABC
The Jim Lampley Award for Best Studio Host – Liam McHugh, NBC. One of the best young hosts on sports television, McHugh has had a very good year. He’s proving to be quite versatile whether he’s hosting the NHL, Olympics or college football. McHugh does a good job with the highlights, meshes with analysts Hines Ward and Doug Flutie and has a very good camera presence. I like his work.
Honorable mentions – Tim Brando, CBS; Rece Davis, ESPN; Chris Fowler, ESPN; Adam Zucker, CBS/CBS Sports Network
Best Studio Analyst – Kirk Herbstreit, ESPN College GameDay. I’m not a fan of Herbstreit’s work in the booth, but there’s no doubt that his strength is on GameDay where he has made his fame. Kirk works well with the entire GameDay crew and is the best analyst on the set. Unlike his picks where he’s not allowed to choose winners for the game he’s calling, Herbstreit is not afraid to take a stand and offers strong opinions. Of course, those opinions have led him to move from his native Columbus to Tennessee as Ohio State fans have vented their anger at him, but Herbie is one of the best analysts in the studio.
Honorable mentions – Doug Flutie, NBC; Mark May, ESPN; Jesse Palmer, ABC; Spencer Tillman, CBS
The Jack Arute Award for Sideline Reporting – Heather Cox, ESPN/ABC. Replacing Erin Andrews on Saturday Night Football and joining the “A” team with Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit, Heather received a high profile assignment and she handled it swimmingly. Coming off another high-profile assignment at the Olympics for NBC at the Beach Volleyball venue, Heather handled halftime coach’s interview very well. I heard that Heather got a raise from ESPN going into this season and it’s well deserved. Very good reporter.
Honorable mentions – Alex Flanagan, NBC; Quint Kessenich, ESPN/ABC; Holly Rowe, ESPN/ABC; Tracy “The Wolf” Wolfson, CBS
Most Valuable Network – NBC. Thanks to Notre Dame’s resurgence, it led to its best ratings for the Fighting Irish package dating back to 2005. The seven games on NBC saw a 67% increase in ratings from a year ago and if Notre Dame wins the BCS National Championship Game in January, NBC will be in prime position for another ratings increase in 2013.
Honorable mentions – CBS; ESPN
Best Overall Coverage – This is always a controversial choice because this is very subjective. ESPN. College Football is a sport where it steps up and provides good coverage. It blankets Saturdays from 9 a.m. ET until 3 a.m. on Sunday. What other network can do this? Maybe CBS Sports Network, but you can start with College GameDay on ESPNU at 9 a.m. ET, watch games starting at noon and flip around to as many as five games spanning to 1:30 a.m. and then watch College Football Final ending your day at 3 a.m. ET. You shouldn’t be up that long, but if you love college football you can.
Honorable mentions – CBS/CBS Sports Network, NBC
Best Move – Fox College Football in primetime. Fox entered the primetime mix with Big 12 and Pac-12 games this season. Having Gus Johnson, Charles Davis and Julie Alexandria on most of the games, they helped to give Fox a big game feel on its college football package. Most of the time, ABC beat Fox in the ratings, but Fox had some decent games this season. We’ll probably see primetime college football on Fox Sports 1 in the next couple of years, but let’s enjoy the games on the Fox mothership for as long as we can.
The Pam Ward Award for Worst Play-by-Play – Craig Bolerjack, Fox. He gets it for the second straight year. Read last year’s post for my reasoning.
Worst Analyst (Game or Studio) – Eddie George and Joey Harrington, Fox (tie). Both on Fox College Saturday, George and Harrington were extremely shaky. They had trouble doing highlights and stumbled a lot. They improved as the season progressed, but it was not enough to wipe away their failing grades from the beginning. I hope to see some major improvement next season.
Worst Debut – Fox College Saturday. This show had potential, but got off to a rough start when a baseball game ran over and wiped out its premiere to most of the country. And it happened again in following weeks when Fox Saturday Baseball would run long. And the show with Erin Andrews, George and Harrington never clicked. The chemistry among the cast never jelled. Here’s hoping with one year under its belt, the show will get better in 2013.
Worst Studio Host – Erin Andrews, Fox. The studio is not Erin Andrews’ strength. She’s best on the sidelines. Erin was shaky in the studio and there was the moment when Stanford beat USC where she said students would not be going to school the following day. Technically that was correct as school would be closed on the following Sunday. Anyway, I hope that she will improve next year, we’ll be watching.
Most Bizarre Lee Corso Moment – We have a couple, but I have to cull this down to one. Lee Corso remains an American treasure and his mascot head picks remain high comedy. However, they can become extremely bizarre like this one in November when Corso almost strangled a duck at the University of Oregon by holding its head under his arm. Luckily, the duck turned out ok, but the ASPCA almost had to be summoned.
Truly one of the most bizarre moments this year.
Honorable mention – Lee fires off guns in Oklahoma once again scaring off Kirk Herbstreit.
And that’s going to complete the Awards for 2012.
By 9:01 p.m. ET on Saturday, we will know who among Colin “Don’t call me Calvin” Klein, Johnny Manziel and Mantei Te’o will win this season’s Heisman Trophy. ESPN will air the presentation Saturday night at 8.
Chris Fowler, Joe Tessitore, Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and Tom Rinaldi will be on hand at Madison Square Garden’s Best Buy Theater to discuss the finalists and then the breakdown for voting for the eventual winner.
ESPN Radio will also air the presentation to be co-hosted by Freddie Coleman and Mel Kiper, Jr. The show will air live on radio starting at 7 p.m. ET.
Let’s take a look at the ESPN press release.
ESPN will continue its comprehensive college football coverage with the exclusive telecast of the 78th annual Heisman Trophy Presentation on Saturday, Dec. 8, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN. The live telecast, from the Best Buy Theater in New York, will also be available on WatchESPN, ESPN Mobile TV and ESPN Radio. The three finalists are senior quarterback Collin Klein (Kansas State), red-shirt freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M) and senior linebacker Manti Te’o (Notre Dame). Highlights:
- Host Chris Fowler will be joined by College GameDay colleagues Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and Tom Rinaldi.
- ESPN college football commentator and “Heismanologist” Joe Tessitore will give historical analysis using the Heisman Touchscreen – a 65-inch monitor application. He will also analyze the voting results by region.
- ESPN’s 16th year of televising the presentation includes interviews with and features on all the finalists in attendance and conversations with their head coaches.
- Television personality and Notre Dame alum Regis Philbin will narrate a tribute to the former Fighting Irish Heisman winners.
- A 50th anniversary tribute to 1962 winner Terry Baker (Oregon State)
- Freddie Coleman and Mel Kiper, Jr. will co-host the three-hour Heisman Trophy Special on ESPN Radio beginning at 7 p.m. The special will feature live coverage the Heisman winner announcement and his acceptance speech, as well as pre-presentation interviews with the three finalists in New York, and a post-announcement interview with the winner.
ESPN International networks will provide live or delayed coverage of the Heisman Presentation on ESPN Americas, ESPN Atlantic, ESPN2 Australia, ESPN2 Caribbean, ESPN Middle East, ESPN PacRim and TSN Canada.
That is all.
The 113th edition of Army vs. Navy will be played in Philadelphia this weekend. CBS Sports and CBS Sports Network will have wall-to-wall coverage on TV. Dial Global airs the game nationally on radio.
CBS’ regular college football crew of Uncle Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson and Tracy “The Wolf” Wolfson will have the call live from Lincoln Financial Field. CBS Sports Network will have live coverage of the traditional “March On” appearance as both Army and Naval Academies make their processions into the stadium.
CBS’ College Football Today pregame show will have a special essay from golf analyst David Feherty. And at halftime, the Heisman Trophy finalists will join Tim Brando, Spencer Tillman and Aaron Taylor in the studio.
Here’s the CBS Sports press release.
CBS SPORTS NETWORK KICKS OFF COVERAGE WITH “MARCH ON” SPECIAL AT 12:00 NOON, ET
HEISMAN TROPHY FINALISTS IN-STUDIO DURING HALFTIME OF ARMY-NAVY
CBS Sports broadcasts the 113th meeting of the Army-Navy football classic, one of the greatest rivalries in all of sports, live from Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa. on Saturday, Dec. 8 (3:00 PM, ET).
CBS Sports Network provides complete, live pre-game coverage of Army-Navy from 12:00 NOON-2:30 PM, ET, beginning with a special telecast featuring the traditional “March On” procession when the Brigade of Midshipmen and Corps of Cadets make their entrance.
Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson, CBS Sports’ lead college football announce team, call the action with Tracy Wolfson reporting from the sidelines. Craig Silver, the Network’s coordinating producer of college football, produces and Steve Milton directs.
Following the ARMY-NAVY MARCH ON SPECIAL (12:00 NOON-1:30 PM, ET) live from Lincoln Financial Field, INSIDE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: ARMY-NAVY TAILGATE (1:30-2:30 PM, ET) takes over to preview the game and features interviews with special guests from the Academies. Adam Zucker and Brent Stover host and are joined by analysts Randy Cross, Brian Jones and Ron Zook.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL TODAY, CBS Sports’ pre-game, halftime and post-game studio show, begins at 2:30 PM, ET. Tim Brando serves as host along with analysts Spencer Tillman and Aaron Taylor, with a special essay from CBS Sports golf analyst David Feherty. For the fourth consecutive year, the Heisman Trophy finalists will be in-studio for a special segment during halftime of Army-Navy. The show includes a feature on Navy freshman quarterback Keenan Reynolds and a feature on Musicorps, a program based at Walter Reed Army Hospital that uses aspects of music to help heal wounded and disabled veterans both emotionally and physically. Joseph E. Zapulla and Mark Burghart produce the features. Vin DeVito produces COLLEGE FOOTBALL TODAY and Linda Malino directs. Harold Bryant is Executive Producer and Vice President, Production, CBS Sports.
CBS Sports’ broadcast of the Army-Navy game also will be streamed live on CBSSports.com and CBS Sports Mobile.
On radio, Dial Global will send the game across the country on terrestrial radio and satellite radio as well as around the world through its website.
John Tautges and Terry Donahue will be in the booth. Lewis Johnson roams the sidelines. Here’s the Dial Global press release.
DIAL GLOBAL SPORTS PRESENTS EXCLUSIVE AUDIO COVERAGE OF THE ARMY-NAVY GAME*
*SATURDAY, DECEMBER 8, 2012**
–Roger Staubach and Military Dignitaries Will Join the Dial Global Broadcast–
New York, NY – December 6, 2012 – Dial Global Sports will present exclusive national and international audio coverage of America’s Game. The 113th meeting between Army and Navy takes place Saturday, December 8th, 2012 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as the Black Knights take on the Midshipmen—a rivalry for the ages.
Dial Global’s live coverage will begin at 2pm, ET, heard on radio stations nationwide and globally on the American Forces Radio Network, as well as on Sirius/XM satellite radio and streaming online at www.dialglobalsports.com. John Tautges, College Football Hall-of-Famer Terry Donahue and sideline reporter Lewis Johnson will call the game, bringing the action to radio listeners coast-to-coast and around the world.
Legendary Heisman-winning Navy quarterback Roger Staubach will be interviewed by fellow Heisman winner and Dial Global Sports announcer Eddie George during the pregame show. In addition, several top level military dignitaries will join the broadcast during Dial Global’s exclusive game coverage, including General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Ray Mabus, Secretary of the Navy.
For more information, and to find a station near you, visit dialglobalsports.com.
That is all.
ESPN has sent its schedule for the college football bowls as well as the Bowl Championship Series. In addition, we have the announcing assignments for all of the games on the ESPN platforms. Most of the games will air on ESPN, some on ESPN2. ESPN Radio also carries a series of games including the entire BCS.
Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit and Heather Cox will call the Rose Bowl and the BCS National Championship Game. ESPN’s other teams for the BCS and the other bowls approaching January are Brad Nessler/Todd Blackledge/Holly Rowe, Sean McDonough/Chris Spielman/Quint Kessenich and Joe Tessitore/Matt Millen/Maria Taylor.
Other teams include ESPN’s regular combos of Beth Mowins/Joey Galloway, Carter Blackburn/Rod Gilmore/Jemele Hill, Mike Patrick/Ed Cunningham, Bob Wischusen/Danny Kanell, Dave Pasch/Brian Griese/Jenn Brown and Mark Jones/Brock Huard.
Here’s ESPN’s press release in full.
ESPN’s extensive college football coverage continues with 34 bowl games, highlighted by all five of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) matchups, including the BCS National Championship (No. 1 Notre Dame vs. No. 2 Alabama) on Monday, Jan. 7, at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio, ESPN 3D and WatchESPN.
The schedule will kick off with an ESPN and ESPN Radio doubleheader on Saturday, Dec. 15: the New Mexico Bowl (Nevada vs. Arizona), which is also on ESPN 3D, at 1 p.m. ET and the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Toledo vs. No. 22 Utah State) at 4:30 p.m.
- An ESPN outlet will offer coverage of at least one game a day for 16 out of the 19 days from Dec. 20 to Jan. 7.
- ESPN’s New Year’s Day lineup will include six games:
- Noon: Gator Bowl (Mississippi State vs. No. 20 Northwestern) on ESPN2 and Heart of Dallas Bowl (Purdue vs. No. 13 Oklahoma State) on ESPNU.
- 1 p.m.: Capital One Bowl (No. 7 Georgia vs. No. 16 Nebraska) on ABC and ESPN Radio and Outback Bowl (No. 10 South Carolina vs. No. 18 Michigan) on ESPN and ESPN Radio.
- 5 p.m.: Rose Bowl (Wisconsin vs. No. 6 Stanford) on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio.
- 8:30 p.m.: Orange Bowl (No. 15 Northern Illinois vs. No. 12 Florida State) on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio.
- Every bowl game on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will be available on computers at WatchESPN.com and on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app. WatchESPN is currently available in 40 million households nationwide to fans who receive their video subscription from Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Verizon FiOS TV, Comcast Xfinity TV or Midcontinent Communications.
- ESPN Deportes will televise all five BCS bowls, marking the first telecast of the entire BCS in Spanish for U.S. Hispanic sports fans. ESPN Deportes also aired the BCS Championship between Alabama and LSU last year. According to the most recent ESPN Deportes Sports PollSource: ESPN Deportes Sports Poll 2011, P2+
- , 42 percent of U.S. Hispanics follow college football. That’s more than the Hispanic fanbase following UEFA Champions League.
- ESPN 3D, the world’s first 24/7 all-sports 3D channel, will televise five bowl games, highlighted by the Sugar Bowl and BCS National Championship. It will mark the third year ESPN 3D has televised the BCS National Championship. ESPN 3D, launched in 2010, is available to more than 63 million homes in the U.S. through carriage agreements with DIRECTV, Comcast, Bright House Networks, Cablevision, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS TV and Google Fiber.
- ESPN Radio will broadcast 24 bowl games, including all five BCS matchups and the Cotton Bowl (No. 9 Texas A&M vs. No. 11 Oklahoma on Friday, Jan. 4, at 7 p.m.).
- ESPN will cover all seven ESPN Regional Television owned-and-operated bowl games: the New Mexico Bowl (Saturday, Dec. 15, at 1 p.m.), St. Petersburg Bowl (Friday, Dec. 21, at 7:30 p.m.); Las Vegas Bowl (Saturday, Dec. 22, at 3:30 p.m.); Hawaii Bowl (Monday, Dec. 24, at 8 p.m.); Texas Bowl (Friday, Dec. 28, at 9 p.m.); Armed Forces Bowl (Saturday, Dec. 29, at 11:45 a.m.); and BBVA Compass Bowl (Saturday, Jan. 5, at 1 p.m.).
- ESPN International will telecast the BCS in: Australia/New Zealand (ESPN Pacific Rim); Latin America North & South; Brazil; Caribbean; Europe (ESPN America); Sub-Saharan Africa (ESPN Atlantic) and Middle East.
Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit will work their sixth consecutive BCS National Championship game on ESPN (Monday, Jan. 7, at 8:30 p.m.) with Saturday Night Football reporter Heather Cox and College GameDay host and reporter Tom Rinaldi. For the second straight year, ESPN’s Monday Night Football signal caller Mike Tirico will work ESPN Radio’s broadcast with ESPN college football analyst Todd Blackledge and reporters Holly Rowe and Joe Schad.
As part of an extensive four-year agreement with the Bowl Championship Series that began in 2010, ESPN will provide exclusive worldwide television coverage, radio broadcasts, digital content and more for the five annual BCS games from January 2011 through January 2014. ESPN Radio has broadcast every BCS game since 2000.
The 2012 college football season on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3, ESPN Radio, ESPN 3D, ESPN Deportes, Longhorn Network, ESPN Mobile TV, ESPN Regional Television, WatchESPN and ESPN GamePlan totals more than 450 regular-and post-season games.
Bowl Championship Series
Tuesday, January 1 5 p.m. Rose Bowl: Wisconsin vs. No. 6 Stanford
ESPN: Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit, Heather Cox & Tom Rinaldi
Radio: Dave Pasch, Brian Griese & Jenn Brown
Deportes: Georgina Ruiz Sandoval & Robert Abramowitz
ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN Radio 8:30 p.m. Orange Bowl: No. 15 Northern Illinois vs. No. 12 Florida State
ESPN: Joe Tessitore, Matt Millen & Maria Taylor
Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie & Joe Schad
Deportes: Eduardo Varela & Pablo Viruega
ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN Radio Wednesday, January 2 8:30 p.m. Sugar Bowl: No. 21 Louisville vs. No. 3 Florida
ESPN: Sean McDonough, Chris Spielman & Quint Kessenich
Radio: Bob Wischusen, Danny Kanell & Allison Williams
Deportes: Eduardo Varela & Pablo Viruega
ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio & ESPN 3D Thursday, January 3 8:30 p.m. Fiesta Bowl: No. 4 Oregon vs. No. 5 Kansas State
ESPN: Brad Nessler, Todd Blackledge & Holly Rowe
Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie & Joe Schad
Deportes: Eduardo Varela & Pablo Viruega
ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN Radio Monday, January 7 8:30 p.m. BCS National Championship Game: No. 1 Notre Dame vs. No. 2 Alabama
ESPN: Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit, Heather Cox & Tom Rinaldi
Radio: Mike Tirico, Todd Blackledge, Holly Rowe & Joe Schad
Deportes: Eduardo Varela & Pablo Viruega
ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio & ESPN 3D
Additional Postseason Games
Date Time (ET) Game Network Saturday, Dec 15 1 p.m. New Mexico Bowl: Nevada vs. Arizona
ESPN: Bob Wischusen, Danny Kanell & Kaylee Hartung
Radio: Mark Neely, Ray Bentley & Marty Cesario
ESPN, ESPN Radio & ESPN 3D 4:30 p.m. Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Toledo vs. No. 22 Utah State
ESPN: Tom Hart, Mike Bellotti & Quint Kessenich
Radio: Rich Cellini, Tom Ramsey & Shelley Smith
ESPN & ESPN Radio Thursday, December 20 8 p.m. Poinsettia Bowl: BYU vs. San Diego State
ESPN: Carter Blackburn, Rod Gilmore & Jemele Hill
Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie & Joe Schad
ESPN, ESPN Radio & ESPN 3D Friday, December 21 7:30 p.m. St. Petersburg Bowl: Central Florida vs. Ball State
ESPN: Dave Neal, Andre Ware, Desmond Howard & Cara Capuano
Radio: Dave Lamont, Matt Stinchcomb & Allison Williams
ESPN & ESPN Radio Saturday, December 22 Noon New Orleans Bowl: East Carolina vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
ESPN: Beth Mowins, Joey Galloway & Quint Kessenich
Radio: Marc Kestecher, Dan Hawkins & Ian Fitzsimmons
ESPN & ESPN Radio 3:30 p.m. Las Vegas Bowl: Washington vs. No. 19 Boise State
Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit & Tom Rinaldi
ESPN Monday, December 24 8 p.m. Hawaii Bowl: Fresno State vs. SMU
ESPN: Carter Blackburn, Kelly Stouffer & Kaylee Hartung
Radio: Marc Kestecher & Pete Najarian
ESPN & ESPN Radio Wednesday, December 26 7:30 p.m. Little Caesars Bowl: Western Kentucky vs. Central Michigan
Mark Neely, Ray Bentley & Jemele Hill
ESPN Thursday, December 27 3 p.m. Military Bowl: No. 24 San Jose State vs. Bowling Green
Bob Wischusen, Danny Kanell & Quint Kessenich
ESPN 6:30 p.m. Belk Bowl: Cincinnati vs. Duke
Mike Patrick, Ed Cunningham & Jeannine Edwards
ESPN 9:45 p.m. Holiday Bowl: Baylor vs. No. 17 UCLA
ESPN: Dave Pasch, Brian Griese & Jenn Brown
Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie & Joe Schad
ESPN, ESPN Radio & ESPN 3D Friday, December 28 2 p.m. Independence Bowl: Ohio vs. Louisiana-Monroe
Dave Lamont, Kelly Stouffer & Cara Capuano
ESPN 5:30 p.m. Russell Athletic Bowl: Rutgers vs. Virginia Tech
ESPN: Joe Tessitore, Matt Millen & Maria Taylor
Radio: Adam Amin, Tom Luginbill & Brett McMurphy
ESPN & ESPN Radio 9 p.m. Texas Bowl: Minnesota vs. Texas Tech
ESPN: Mark Jones, Brock Huard & Jessica Mendoza
Radio: Tom Hart, John Congemi & Niki Noto
ESPN & ESPN Radio Saturday, December 29 11:45 a.m. Armed Forces Bowl: Rice vs. Air Force
ESPN: Beth Mowins, Joey Galloway & Lewis Johnson
Radio: Eamon McAnaney, David Diaz-Infante & Paul Carcaterra
ESPN & ESPN Radio 3:15 p.m. Pinstripe Bowl: West Virginia vs. Syracuse
ESPN: Chris Fowler, Jesse Palmer & Tom Rinaldi
Radio: Marc Kestecher, Jack Ford & C.J. Papa
ESPN & ESPN Radio 4 p.m. Fight Hunger Bowl: Navy vs. Arizona State
Dave Pasch, Brian Griese & Jenn Brown
ESPN2 6:45 p.m. Alamo Bowl: No. 23 Texas vs. No. 13 Oregon State
ESPN: Sean McDonough, Chris Spielman & Quint Kessenich
Radio: Mark Neely, Ray Bentley & Kaylee Hartung
ESPN & ESPN Radio 10:15 p.m. Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: TCU vs. Michigan State
ESPN: Brad Nessler, Todd Blackledge & Holly Rowe
Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie & Joe Schad
ESPN & ESPN Radio Monday, December 31 Noon Music City Bowl: NC State vs. Vanderbilt
Carter Blackburn, Rod Gilmore & Jemele Hill
ESPN 3:30 p.m. Liberty Bowl: Iowa State vs. Tulsa
ESPN: Mark Jones, Brock Huard & Jessica Mendoza
Radio: Beth Mowins, Joey Galloway & Lewis Johnson
ESPN & ESPN Radio 7:30 p.m. Chick-fil-A Bowl: No. 8 LSU vs. No. 14 Clemson
ESPN: Mike Patrick, Ed Cunningham & Jeannine Edwards
Radio: Dave Neal, Andre Ware & Cara Capuano
ESPN & ESPN Radio Tuesday, January 1 Noon Gator Bowl: Mississippi State vs. No. 20 Northwestern
Bob Wischusen, Danny Kanell & Allison Williams
ESPN2 Heart of Dallas Bowl: Purdue vs. Oklahoma State
Clay Matvick, Matt Stinchcomb & Kaylee Hartung
ESPNU 1 p.m. Capital One Bowl: No. 7 Georgia vs. No. 16 Nebraska
ABC: Rece Davis, Jesse Palmer, David Pollack & Samantha Steele
Radio: Dave Lamont, Kelly Stouffer & Brett McMurphy
ABC & ESPN Radio Outback Bowl: No. 10 South Carolina vs. No. 18 Michigan
ESPN: Mike Tirico, Jon Gruden & Shannon Spake
Radio: Carter Blackburn, John Congemi & Jemele Hill
ESPN & ESPN Radio Friday, January 4 7 p.m. Cotton Bowl: No. 9 Texas A&M vs. No. 11 Oklahoma
Brad Sham, Ed Cunningham & Ian Fitzsimmons
ESPN Radio Saturday, January 5 1 p.m. BBVA Compass Bowl: Pittsburgh vs. Ole Miss
ESPN: Eamon McAnaney, David Diaz-Infante & Paul Carcaterra
Radio: Dave Lamont, Kelly Stouffer & Allison Williams
ESPN & ESPN Radio Sunday, January 6 9 p.m. GoDaddy.com Bowl: No. 25 Kent State vs. Arkansas State
Mark Jones, Brock Huard & Jessica Mendoza
That is all.
Surpassing the ratings for Notre Dame-USC from the previous Saturday, last weekend’s SEC Championship on CBS hit the ratings motherlode.
It received a 9.8 rating with a very good 20 share up 34% from last year’s SEC Championship between LSU and Florida. Viewership averaged 16.2 million viewers up 26% from last year’s viewership of 12.016 million.
We have the blurb from CBS Sports.
COVERAGE OF 2012 SEC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME DELIVERS HIGHEST-RATED AND MOST-WATCHED COLLEGE FOOTBALL GAME OF 2012 REGULAR-SEASON
CBS Sports’ national coverage of the SEC Championship game on Saturday, Dec, 1 (4:00-8:00 PM, ET), which saw Alabama defeat Georgia, 32-28, delivered a 9.8/20 preliminary national average household rating/share, up 34% from last year (7.3/15; LSU-Georgia).
The 9.8/20 for Alabama-Georgia is the highest rating for a college football game during the 2012 regular season (Notre Dame at USC – 9.4/16; 11/24/12; ABC).
The 2012 SEC Championship averaged 16.2 million viewers, also making it the most-watched college football game of the 2012 regular-season(Notre Dame at USC; 16.1 million; 11/24/12; ABC).
The Alabama-Georgia game rating peaked at 12.6/23 and 21.8 million viewers from 7:30-8:00 PM, ET.
And let’s add this blurb from CBS which states that the SEC on CBS package is the most watched in college football for the fourth straight year, outpacing ABC. The SEC on CBS averaged a 3.3/9 for the 2012 season. That was better than ABC’s 3.2/7 which finished 2nd. Here’s the blurb.
“SEC ON CBS” SCORES HIGHEST RATING OF ANY COLLEGE FOOTBALL TELEVISION PACKAGE FOR FOURTH CONSECUTIVE YEAR
CBS Sports’ national coverage of the SEC ON CBS for the 2012 season is the highest-rated regular-season college football package on any network for the fourth consecutive season, averaging a preliminary national household rating/share of 3.9/9.
The SEC ON CBS season average of a 3.9/9 topped second place ABC’s season average of 3.2/7 for college football.
CBS Sports’ coverage of the SEC ON CBS was highlighted by three of the top five highest-rated and most-watched college football telecasts of the 2012 season:
- #1 – No. 2-ranked Alabama beating No. 3-ranked Georgia (9.8/20; 16.2 million viewers; 12/1/12)
- #3 – No. 1-ranked Alabama beating No. 5-ranked LSU (6.8/12; 11.4 million viewers; 11/3/12)
- #4 – No. 15-ranked Texas A&M beating No. 1-ranked Alabama (6.1/13; 9.6 million viewers; 11/10/12).
That will do it.
Let’s do some Tuesday links. Lots of stuff to get to.
Michael Hiestand of USA Today writes that Bob Costas is receiving his share of criticism for his anti-gun commentary during halftime of Sunday Night Football.
Busted Coverage has video of Bob Costas telling Dan Patrick that he’s not backing off on his anti-gun comments.
Michael Katz of USA Today’s Game On blog recaps Vin Scully’s first and way too brief foray into Twitter on Monday.
From Yahoo’s Cagefighter, the great Maggie Hendricks tells us that Mixed Martial Arts viewing will be different in 2013.
Mike Reynolds from Multichannel News says Universal Sports will be moving its operations from Los Angeles to the Comcast Media Center in Denver.
From Advertising Age, Brian Steinberg writes that Mercedes-Benz plans to bring out some big guns for its Super Bowl ad in February.
ESPN’s Darren Rovell notes that Lincoln cars are looking to make a return to Super Bowl advertising.
Tom Conroy of Media Life Magazine reviews the new NFL Films-produced Travel Channel documentary series on the Cleveland Browns support staff.
Ed Sherman at The Sherman Report reviews two documentaries that debut this week.
The Nielsen Wire says the Los Angeles Lakers are the most marketable of all NBA teams.
Steve Burton of WBZ-TV in Boston is the only one reporting that the NHL Lockout is close to ending.
Bill Carter of the New York Times says Bob Costas put the spotlight on himself with his anti-gun Sunday Night Football halftime commentary.
The New York Daily News reports that the Jets have renewed their radio rights deal with ESPN Radio New York.
Jerry Barmash at Fishbowl NY says YES Network had its best ratings ever for a Nets game.
Pete Dougherty from the Albany Times Union says Monday night’s Giants-DC NFL Team contest hit the ratings jackpot for ESPN.
Chris Korman of the Baltimore Sun writes that the Orioles are denying yesterday’s Sports Business Journal report that Fox Sports attempted to buy MASN.
Sarah Kogod from the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog tells us that many DC-area athletes stayed up to watch Robert Griffin III on Monday Night Football.
Erik Wemple at the WaPo talks about sports networks tackling political topics.
Tom Jones at the Tampa Bay Times reviews what happened on sports television over the weekend.
The Fort Pierce (FL) Tribune reports that the local ESPN Radio affiliate will continue to produce nightly sports report for the local NBC and Fox stations.
David Barron of the Houston Chronicle says Jim Deshaies’ departure for Chicago is a big loss for the Astros.
Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer says Fox is close to purchasing Sports Time Ohio and gaining the rights to the city’s MLB team.
Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune talks about the Cubs hiring a new analyst.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News has the five things he learned from the weekend.
Joe Flint from the Los Angeles Times says NFL Network’s Thursday Night Football is eating into the ratings of the league’s other TV partners.
Sports Media Watch notes that the MLS Cup had a slight decline in its overnight ratings as the game moved from a Sunday night to late Saturday afternoon.
The Huffington Post has video of ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit giving Northern Illinois blackboard material by ripping the team’s invitation to the Orange Bowl.
That’s where I’ll end it today.
Today is Championship Saturday in college football. Four conference championships will be played today. CBS has one of them with the SEC Championship in Atlanta.
The winner between Alabama and Georgia will play Notre Dame in the next-to-last BCS National Championship Game on January 7.
Uncle Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson and Tracy Wolfson will be at the Georgia Dome to call and report on the action.
CBS’ College Football Today crew of Tim Brando, Spencer Tillman, Archie Manning and Mr. College Football, Tony Barnhart will be on hand for the pregame, halftime and postgame studio shows.
Let’s take a look at what CBS is saying about the game.
“COLLEGE FOOTBALL TODAY” STUDIO CREW LIVE FROM ATLANTA
GAME TO BE STREAMED ON CBSSPORTS.COM AND CBS SPORTS MOBILE; CBS SPORTS NETWORK PROVIDES POST-GAME COVERAGE
CBS Sports presents the SEC Championship game Saturday, Dec. 1 (4:00 PM, ET) featuring the Western Division Champion and *No. 2-ranked Alabama taking on the Eastern Division Champion and *No. 3-ranked Georgia at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Ga.
Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson, CBS Sports’ lead college football announce team, call the action with Tracy Wolfson reporting from the sidelines. Craig Silver, the Network’s coordinating producer of college football, produces and Steve Milton directs.
CBS COLLEGE FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP SATURDAY (3:00-3:30 PM, ET) with host Tim Brando and analysts Spencer Tillman, Archie Manning and Tony Barnhart. The show previews the SEC Championship and includes a feature on Georgia’s All-American linebacker Jarvis Jones, who talks about overcoming the tragic murder of his brother in 2005. In addition, there will be a feature on Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron, focusing on the winning and losing fourth quarter drives he led against LSU and Texas A&M, respectively. CBS Sports’ Joseph E. Zapulla and Mark Burghart produce the features.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL TODAY, CBS Sports’ pre-game, halftime and post-game studio show will be broadcast live from the field of the Georgia Dome beginning at 3:30 PM, ET featuring Brando along with Tillman, Manning and Barnhart. Vin DeVito produces and Linda Malino directs. Harold Bryantis Executive Producer and Vice President, Production, CBS Sports.
Following the game, CBS Sports Network will air SEC TONIGHT, providing immediate highlights and analysis of Alabama-Georgia, as well as post-game interviews and coverage from the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. Brent Stover hosts along with analysts Houston Nutt, Randy Cross and Bruce Feldman. Brian Jones reports from Atlanta. INSIDE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: CHAMPIONSHIP SATURDAY SPECIAL (12:00-12:30 AM, ET) provides an in-depth recap of all the day’s Championship action around college football.
As it has done for the entire 2012 SEC ON CBS football schedule, CBSSports.com will provide live streaming coverage of the SEC Championship. The game is available exclusively on CBSSports.com, CBS Sports Mobile and also can be accessed through a link on the websites of all CBS affiliates.
(*BCS Rankings as of 11/25/12)
EXCERPTS FROM CBS SPORTS’ SEC CHAMPIONSHIP CONFERENCE CALL ON TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 27
When Georgia has quarterback play, Mark Richt’s team has a chance to compete against anybody. He has his defense together and with a quarterback, he has a chance to win. We don’t know how real Georgia is. They had a terrible slump in the middle of the season when even their own players called the team out. That seemed to ignite them. They played a very good defensive football game against Florida, but their quarterback had a really tough first half and he almost tossed a game away that they should have won pretty easily. But since then, when the rest of the country was playing really tough football games, Georgia played Old Miss, Auburn, Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech. They haven’t been tested. So, they’re basically coming from the October 27 game into the Championship game, and we don’t know if they’ve gotten any better or where they stand. We know they have great potential and they are loaded athletically on defense.
Alabam never was unbeatable. They’ve proven that. But you better be good enough to take advantage of what they give you. Saban makes you play NFL-style football against them. Your quarterback has to complete passes. When you do it like Zach Mettenberger or Johnny Manziel did, they’re vulnerable. But if you don’t have a quarterback that can do it, then forget it. You have no chance.
(KEY TO THE GAME)
Georgia needs to find a way to get Jarvis Jones to impact the game without matching him up against the strength of Alabama, which is their two tackles. Of course Jones will make plays, but that’s not his best position to rush against. There are weaker parts of Alabama to rush, so I’m fascinated to see what Georgia will try to make Jones become an impact. The other part of the game is the weakness both teams are facing against each other. Alabama is not a great pass rush team. There is no Dont’a Hightower, Courtney Upshaw or Marcell Dareus who individually can rush the pass. They have to do it as a group. But the worst thing Georgia does is pass protect. So who wins that left-handed dribble contest will probably be the story of the game.