Let’s get cracking on some fresh content on this Monday afternoon. Plenty of stuff to go over.
- Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch’s Monday column discusses Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed reporting on the Red Carpet at The Oscars and reviews Fox’s Daytona 500 coverage.
- The man who started SportsGrid, ABC News legal analyst Dan Abrams, the site has been sold to RotoExperts.
- I’m getting a lot of reaction to my post on whether Fox can find the proper role for Erin Andrews.
- Randolph May at Multichannel News talks about a case over Comcast’s refusal to move Tennis Channel off a dreaded sports tier.
- To Sports Business Daily where Richard E. Lapchick laments the lack of hiring diversity in the sports media.
- Overseas, ESPN is getting out of the UK television business, selling its channels to BT Group which beat it out for the rights to the English Premier League. ESPN will continue to maintain its digital UK assets and also kill ESPN Classic in Europe and Africa in separate decisions.
- USA Today’s Michael Hiestand feels Fox got off to a fast start with the overnight ratings for the Daytona 500.
- Hiestand also looks at the other sports overnight ratings from the weekend.
- David Lieberman at Deadline says News Corp.’s Deputy Chief Operating Officer James Murdoch (son of Rupert) says even with Fox Sports creating new all-sports cable channels, the company plans to be pennywise and not pound foolish over rights fees.
- In the Sherman Report, Ed Sherman talks with Golf Channel’s David Feherty about the season premiere of his weekly interview show.
- Bruce Allen at Boston Sports Media Watch looks at a preposterous argument put the forth by WEEI’s Gerry Callahan regarding the Daytona 500 and Danica Patrick.
- Bill Carter at the New York Times notes how NBC has had a precipitous fall into the ratings basement after starting off so well when Sunday Night Football was on.
- Phil Mushnick of the New York Post feels the Federal lawsuit against Lance Armstrong wreaks of hypocrisy.
- From Dan Steinberg at the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog reports that MASN’s Kristina Akra who was the Nationals’ on-field reporter is leaving the network. No word on where she’s going or who’s going to replace her.
- Jim Williams from the Washington Examiner says David Feherty will reveal a different side of golfing legend Jack Nicklaus tonight.
- Tom Jones at the Tampa Bay Times says Fox didn’t do itself any favors during its Daytona 500 prerace coverage.
- The Houston Chronicle’s David Barron notes that a local sports anchor is leaving his station after more than 20 years of service.
- Dan Caesar at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says Cardinals fans will be able to see and listen to their team throughout Spring Training.
- Dusty Saunders in the Denver Post writes about a Rocky Mountain TV veteran who wants to return to his sports roots.
- Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News has the SoCal Sports Calendar for this week.
- Tom has the five things he learned from the weekend.
- Bruce Dowbiggin of the Toronto Globe and Mail makes clear of his disdain for CBC’s Don Cherry.
- Paulsen of Sports Media Watch says opposite the Daytona 500, the NBA on ABC took a big ratings hit.
- To Matt Yoder of Awful Announcing who looks at what Joe Buck plans to do with the St. Louis Cardinals if he manages to get the team and Fox Sports Midwest to sign off on his idea.
- Michael Shamburger at The Big Lead says Katherine Webb is 1st Round talent.
Ok, I’m going to end the linkage/notebook there.
After losing the UK rights to the English Premier League last year to BT Group, observers had thought ESPN’s days across the pond were numbered. Despite trying to remain afloat with rights to the FA Cup, Scottish Premier League, the UEFA Europa League and the German Bundesliga, ESPN felt without the EPL, it could not remain in business. Today, it was announced that BT Group will take over ESPN’s infrastructure and channels, ESPN UK and ESPN America. The deal will close at the end of July.
This means that US sports programming seen on ESPN in the UK will eventually move to BT Group. BT will operate one ESPN channel while another will go away and be absorbed into BT’s portfolio.
ESPN will continue to operate its UK digital assets.
Here’s the BT press release.
BT Group and ESPN announced today that they have agreed that BT will acquire ESPN’s UK and Ireland TV channels business. These primarily comprise the ESPN and ESPN America channels and their live sports rights portfolio, including the FA Cup, Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League, UEFA Europa League, and the German Bundesliga.
The transaction is expected to complete on July 31, 2013 after which BT will continue to operate at least one ESPN-branded channel which is expected to form part of the BT Sport TV package that will be launched by BT this summer. Additionally, the deal will allow BT to continue to show a host of US sports currently shown on ESPN America, including NCAA College Basketball, NCAA College Football and NASCAR. The ESPN channels will be broadcast from BT Sport’s new home in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford. Until completion, the service for current subscribers to the ESPN channels across all television platforms remains unchanged.
The deal will enable BT Sport customers to see live coverage of the FA Cup for the 2013/14 season, the Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League until the end of the 2016/17 season and the UEFA Europa League and German Bundesliga through to the end of the 2014/15 season. These join the broadcast rights that BT Sport has previously announced, including 38 live Barclays Premier League matches – including 18 of the top clashes – in each of the next three seasons (beginning August 2013); 69 live Aviva Premiership Rugby matches for the next four seasons; and up to 800 hours per season of live women’s tennis, including the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships.
ESPN will continue to own and operate its existing digital media businesses which include multisport news and information portal ESPN.co.uk, ESPNcricinfo (cricket), ESPNFC (football), ESPNscrum (rugby), ESPNF1 (Formula 1) and broadband streaming service ESPN Player. ESPN Classic has been excluded from the proposed transaction.
Marc Watson, chief executive of television, BT Retail, said: “We are delighted to have reached agreement with ESPN for the acquisition of their UK channels business and that we have been able to add some exciting new sports rights to the ones we already have.
“The FA Cup, Scottish Premier League and Europa League rights will allow us to offer customers of BT Sport even more quality live football, including our first games from the Scottish top flight and our first European competition rights. There will also be the best of US sports available courtesy of this deal, which will further broaden the appeal of BT Sport.
Ross Hair, managing director, ESPN – Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: “We could not be more proud of the TV channels built and nurtured by our talented team over the past four years. The value of that hard work is reflected in this deal with BT and the continuation of ESPN on television screens across the UK and Ireland. The same passion, commitment and innovation will be at the heart of how we develop our strong digital media business into the future.”
Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory clearance.
Separate from the agreement with BT, ESPN is proposing the wind down of ESPN Classic throughout the EMEA region and the non-UK ESPN America TV businesses.
As you can see, ESPN Classic will be killed off in a separate decision. Jason Deans and Owen Gibson at the London Guardian have details of the deal which means a lot of the announcers may not move to BT. That includes host Rebecca Lowe who has been seen on ESPN in the US on EPL coverage and on the Women’s World Cup.
After an announcement was prematurely made earlier this week on the Kontinental Hockey League’s website, ESPN has officially stated that it will pick up 6 games this month, most to stream on ESPN3. ESPN2 will carry the first game on Tuesday with Steve Levy and Barry Melrose calling the game off a monitor in Bristol, CT.
The rest of the games will be called by another crew in Bristol.
ESPN says the league’s KHL All-Star Game will also be carried. More games could added later.
Let’s check out the press release from ESPN regarding the 2012-13 Kontinental Hockey League schedule.
Minimum of seven games to be carried exclusively in the US, including the KHL All-Star Game
Games will also air on ESPN in UK
ESPN today officially announced that it will deliver a minimum of seven games from 2012-13 season of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) exclusively on ESPN3 in the US and on ESPN UK. Coverage begins Tuesday, October 9 at 1 p.m. ET with ESPN SportsCenter anchor Steve Levy and NHL studio analyst Barry Melrose calling the Lev vs. Dynamo Moscow game live on ESPN2 and ESPN3. The game will re-air in primetime on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. ET and will air on delay on ESPN in the UK (Wednesday, Oct. 10 at 2 p.m. BST).
Confirmed games through the end of the month feature an all-star lineup of hockey players, including Alex Ovechkin (Dynamo Moscow), Ilya Kovalchuk (SKA), Evgeni Malkin and Sergei Gonchar (Metallurg Mg).
KHL on ESPN3 (US) Date Time (ET) Match-Up Tue, Oct 9 1:00 p.m. Lev vs. Dynamo Moscow ** Sun, Oct 14 9:00 a.m. Dynamo Moscow vs. Amur Tue, Oct 16 11:30 a.m. Dynamo Moscow vs. Sibir HD Thu, Oct 18 11:45 a.m. SKA vs. Sibir HD Mon, Oct 22 12:30 p.m. Dinamo Riga vs. Metallurg Mg Mon, Oct 29 11:30 a.m. Dynamo Moscow vs. Dinamo Riga HD
** Also airing on ESPN2
Full schedule information for games on ESPN in the UK will be released shortly and will be available on www.espn.co.uk/TV.
In addition to Levy and Melrose, commentary will be delivered in English language by play-by-play announcer Paul Romanuk and analyst Aaron Murphy. Previously, ESPN3 in the US carried more than 50 games from the KHL live in Russian throughout the 2009-10 and 2010-11 regular seasons and playoffs. In January 2010, ESPN3 distributed the KHL All-Star Game with Levy and Melrose commentating live from Bristol.
There you have it.
Just announced in the last half hour, the English Premier League has awarded Sky Sports and BT rights to a total of 154 matches a season starting in 2013. ESPN UK which was thought to be a favorite and Al Jazeera which was hoping to get a foothold into the EPL were effectively shut out. ESPN which entered the EPL scene in 2009 after Setanta Sports went bankrupt and let their rights go up for bid giving ESPN 46 games at first, then a total of 23 games from 2010 through 2013, will enter its last season of airing EPL games in the UK starting in August.
Now with Sky and BT obtaining the rights, ESPN will have to depend on other programming in the UK to attract viewers.
Overall, Sky or BSkyB as it’s known in the UK will have the rights to 116 games a season with new entry BT gaining 38 games. The new TV contract takes effect in the 2013-14 season.
The rights are for 3.018 billion British Pounds or over US$4.6 billion so the English Premier League remains the richest football league in Europe.
ESPN still retains US rights to a package of English Premier League games through this season in a sharing agreement with Fox Soccer.
Here’s the announcement from the English Premier League.
Premier League announces audio-visual rights
The Premier League has concluded the sales process for the seven packages of live audio-visual rights for transmission in the UK during seasons 2013/14 to 2015/16.
The seven packages – five of 26 matches and two of 12 matches – totalling 154 matches were awarded on the following basis:
- BSkyB has secured packages B, C, D, E and F totalling 116 matches.
- BT has secured packages A and G totalling 38 matches.
The overall value delivered for the seven packages following the structured and independently scrutinised sales process is £3.018 billion.
Premier League Chief Executive, Richard Scudamore, said: “The Premier League continues to provide excellent football and enthralling drama as we saw last season. The value this drives for our rightsholders is evident and we are extremely pleased that this has been realised for our UK live rights.
“As ever, the security provided by broadcast revenues will enable our clubs to continue to invest in all aspects of their football activities and plan sustainably for the foreseeable future. This deal allows them to keep delivering what fans want; top quality football in some of world’s best club stadia and an increasing focus on and commitment to areas such as Youth Development.
“The continuing support of BSkyB for Premier League football is significant beyond the revenues delivered; the longevity and quality of their commitment has done much for the English game as a whole. We are very happy to see this relationship maintained for another three seasons.
“We welcome BT as a new Premier League broadcast partner. They are a substantial British company that is at the leading edge of technology and infra-structure development. They are clearly investing in quality content to use on their platforms and when combined with the reach and pull of Premier League football they will deliver new ways in which fans will be able to follow the competition.
“These are exciting times for both the football and media worlds and we should all be proud of the value both industries contribute to the UK culturally and economically.
“I would also like to place on record the Premier League’s thanks to the numerous other highly credible bidders that showed such interest in the live UK rights.”
Late last month, the BBC retained rights to weekend Premier League highlights for its Match of the Day program and was allowed to stream the program on its website.
More on this story in the links which will come later today.
Wasn’t able to post as much as I wanted to yesterday and this weekend has been planned for me once again so I won’t be on too much here today and tomorrow. But if something breaks, I’ll do my best to post it here.
Let’s do some quick links today.
First, Phil Mushnick of the New York Post is in a firestorm for writing this column Friday suggesting the Jay-Z-owned Brooklyn Nets be called the New York N-words. And then went farther by saying the cheerleaders be named the Brooklyn Bitches or Hoes.
After negative reaction, Bob’s Blitz got a hold of Mushnick and he refused to apologize for the column and the Post is backing him. At least for now.
Larry McShane of the New York Daily News looks at the reaction to Mushnick’s column.
MediaRantz says the Post needs to get rid of Mushnick.
Robert Littal of Black Sports Online also calls for the Post to fire Mushnick.
Joe Lucia from Awful Announcing can’t believe Mushnick went so far.
And Tommy Craggs at Deadspin calls Mushnick a troll.
This controversy won’t be going away anytime soon and unless the Post takes some kind of action, I suspect there could be a few protests outside the Post’s offices next week. Unbelievable.
To other stories now.
Rarely do I link to Grantland because most of the stories are boring and way too long, but this one from Bryan Curtis is quite the good read. This focuses on a group of old guard sportswriters known as “The Chipmunks” and how they once represented the best and brightest.
Today’s FA Cup Final in the UK between Chelsea and Liverpool will have a first on British television. ESPN UK’s Rebecca Lowe becomes the first woman to host a major soccer broadcast as Laura Williamon of the London Guardian reports.
Jay Yarow of the Business Insider Sports Page notes Captain Blowhard had to give up his NBA MVP vote because he actually made a wager on the award. Stupid.
Ed Sherman at the Sherman Report talks with NBC’s Tom Hammond about today’s Kentucky Derby.
The Big Lead notes that Dan Patrick is pissed at ESPN once again.
Matt Yoder of Awful Announcing says it’s DP vs. Colin Cowhack of ESPN Radio.
Richard Rys of Philadelphia Magazine looks at the dwindling sportscasts on local TV newscasts.
Diane Pucin of the Los Angeles Times wonders why announcers don’t report on no-hitters in progress.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News tackles the same subject.
And that’s where we’ll end it today.
Let’s provide the links on this Sunday.
Tim Goodman in the Hollywood Reporter writes about how the MLB Postseason remains compelling even without big market teams.
Mike Reynolds from Multichannel News notes that Game 4 of the National League Championship Series became the third most watched NLCS game on cable.
John Eggerton of Multichannel says DirecTV will air the first ever 3D production of pro bull riding.
Mike says Golf Channel is off to record ratings for the PGA Tour’s Fall Series.
R. Thomas Umstead of Multichannel notes that ESPN has closed its Content Development department which was responsible for its critically acclaimed “30 for 30″ series.
The Big Lead notes that ESPN.com college football reporter Pat Forde is leaving to join Yahoo! Sports.
Barry Janoff of The Big Lead writes that the NHL is now red hot for marketers.
Dan Fogarty of SportsGrid says ESPN will not discipline New York Daily News columnist Mike Lupica for an anti-President Obama piece.
From Media Bistro’s Agency Spy site, Kiran Aditham wonders which agency won the NBC Sports account.
In Sports Media Journal, Southern New England media mogul Keith Thibault delves into the controversial Boston Globe piece on the collapse of the Red Sox.
Matthew Holehouse of the London (UK) Telegraph looks at ESPN UK’s new virtual studio for its English Premier League broadcasts.
The Hartford Courant says both the State of Connecticut and NBC are not commenting about reports that NBC Sports could be moving its headquarters to Stamford.
To the New York Post where Phil Mushnick has some suggestions for the TV networks.
Keith Groller of the Allentown (PA) Morning Call speaks with former CNN Sports Tonight co-host Fred Hickman about his friend, the late Nick Charles.
Neal Zoren of the Delaware County Times says a retired Philadelphia sportscaster will have new book coming out this week.
The Washington Post’s Reliable Source column notes that ESPN’s Lindsay Czarniak tied the knot with an MSNBC anchor.
Tom Jones of the St. Petersburg Times has a few sports media tidbits.
The Miami Herald says E:60 will have a feature on a WWE wrestler who’s been locked in a battle outside of the ring.
Tommy Stevenson of the Tuscaloosa (AL) News says sports television coverage of this year’s devastating tornado has showed the city’s resilience to the nation.
George Sipple of the Detroit Free Press notes that ESPN’s College GameDay will be on the Michigan State campus this week.
Lance Pugmire of the Los Angeles Times looks at HBO Sports tapping the Showtime ranks for its new division president.
The Canadian Sports Media Blog replies to a blogger who wants the CBC to be privatized and no longer be funded by the government.
The Toronto Sports Media Blog notes the passing of a Canadian sportswriter.
Sports Media Watch says the ratings for the NLCS are improving, but still down from last year.
Steve Lepore of Puck The Media goes off the beaten path and says realignment in college football could mean some good things for Versus/NBC Sports Network.
Awful Announcing introduces the Dick Stockton Chronicles.
And that will do it for today.
When the Women’s World Cup kicks off on the networks of ESPN on Sunday, June 26, you will see some familiar faces and hear familiar voices like Bob Ley, Ian Darke, Julie Foudy and Brandi Chastain. One person whom you may not have seen is Rebecca Lowe who works for ESPN UK on its English Premier League coverage as well as hosting one of its weekly studio shows. She joined ESPN UK in 2009 from Setanta Sports and she previously worked for BBC Sport. We have a short bio and pic.
Rebecca Lowe joined ESPN in 2009 as co-host of ESPN UK’s live coverage of the Barclays Premier League, working alongside Ray Stubbs. She and Stubbs are also co-anchors of Between the Lines, ESPN UK’s weekly, hard-hitting debate and opinion program on all aspects of football.
Prior to joining ESPN, Lowe was a studio host for Setanta Sports where she worked as a football presenter and reporter (2007-09). She hosted Setanta’s coverage of the Football Conference and was reporter for Premier League matches on the network. She also was co-host of Football Matters, Setanta’s Premier League studio program. Lowe began her sports television career after winning the 2002 BBC Talent Search for a football reporter, from a field of 650 candidates.
At BBC (2002-07), Lowe was a critical contributor to the network’s key soccer programs – reporting from a top Premiership match every Saturday for Final Score; regularly interviewing and reporting features for Football Focus; and presenting a “Football in the Community” feature every Sunday morning on Match of the Day. She has also been a regular contributor to BBC Television’s Match of the Day 2.
Lowe was a reporter for BBC Two at the 2004 African Cup of Nations in Tunisia. In 2005 she worked as BBC One’s England team reporter at the Women’s European Championship in Manchester. She covered the FA Women’s Cup Final from 2003 to 2007 and the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany as a reporter for BBC One.
If I find more Women’s World Cup announcer bios, I’ll post them here.
Ok, let’s do some linkage while I can squeeze some in. I had to meet a deadline earlier. I think I’m safe for now.
Starting with Michael Hiestand of USA Today, he wonders if the PGA Tour can generate ratings if Tiger Woods isn’t winning tournaments.
Michael also has some of the upcoming sports viewing for the week.
Tom Weir of USA Today’s Game On blog wonders how a year without the NFL would be like.
Mathew Futterman of the Wall Street Journal has a fascinating look at the meticulous notes prepared by college basketball analyst Bill Raftery.
At the Indiana University National Sports Journalism Center, Jason Fry notes that last week was a big one for breaking news on Twitter.
To Press Coverage and Dan Levy who feels the Associated Press might not be doing the NFL any favors.
Etan Vlessing of the Hollywood Reporter writes about a Canadian company that wants to launch a third sports network to compete with TSN and Rogers Sportsnet.
Anthony Crupi from Mediaweek says a lockout by the NFL could turn disastrous for the league, its TV partners and its sponsors.
Rich Thomaselli of Advertising Age reports that CBS has rejected an NFL Players Association ad that would have aired on CBS College Sports this week.
Steve McClellan of Advertising Week writes that NBC’s Cris Collinsworth and Wipeout’s Jill Wagner will host a new syndicated lifestyle series starting this week.
The Huffington Post says Fox has rejected a Super Bowl ad that has religious overtones.
AllAccess notes that ESPN Radio has released the latest version of its iPhone app today.
Mike Walker of Golf Magazine says CBS saw higher ratings for the final round of yesterday’s PGA Tour stop from last year.
From across the Atlantic, James Robinson of The Guardian/The Observer writes about upstart ESPN UK trying to battle the well-established Rupert Murdoch-owned Sky Sports.
Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe notes that NESN will be airing a Red Sox Town Hall tonight.
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post is in a foul mood today.
Newsday’s Neil Best has some Monday thoughts.
Ray Didinger of Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia lobbies for NFL Films founder Ed Sabol to get a call for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Patty Tascarella of the Pittsburgh Business Times reports that the Penguins lead the NHL in the local US TV ratings.
Tom Jones from the St. Petersburg Times provides his thoughts on the sports weekend.
Shannon J. Owens at the Orlando Sentinel writes about Stuart Scott’s latest battle with cancer.
Mark Norando of the New Orleans Times Picayune says the NFL Films-produced America’s Team documentary on the Saints Super Bowl XLIV-winning team is now available for download.
Barry Horn of the Dallas Morning News says this Sunday’s Super Bowl could break a viewership record despite having small markets involved.
Barry profiles ESPN’s senior coordinating producer of the network’s NFL studio shows, Stephanie Druley.
Leigh Munsil of the Morning News writes about ESPN’s kickoff of Super Bowl week in Fort Worth with Mike & Mike in the Morning.
Pete Alfano from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram says even with bitter cold temperatures forecast for the Metroplex, ESPN is steaming ahead with plans to air shows live from Sundance Square this week.
Gordon Dickson from the Star-Telegram writes that Super Bowl planners are facing the worst-case scenario with winter weather and potential traffic snarls.
The Star-Telegram has a slideshow of ESPN’s start to Super Bowl week at Sundance Square.
Kathy Vetter of the Star-Telegram says the NFL’s Super Bowl media center opened quietly yesterday.
John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that a local sports reporter is leaving for Dallas.
Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Sentinel feels Super Bowl XLV won’t surpass last year’s viewership record, but I’m going to disagree with him.
Crain’s Chicago Business’ Ed Sherman explores the unique trust that is the Green Bay Packers ownership.
Dusty Saunders of the Denver Post lists some of his dreaded sports broadcasting cliches.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News has the sports calendar for this week.
In the Toronto Globe and Mail, Bruce Dowbiggin feels NHL All-Star Weekend was a mixed bag for the league’s Canadian TV partners.
The Globe and Mail picks up a Canadian Press story chronicling how curling delayed CBC’s coverage of the All-Star Game.
Sports Media Watch has a quick glance on how the NBA postseason will begin on the league’s TV partners.
SMW also has some various ratings news and notes.
Steve Lepore at Puck The Media wonders if MLB on Fox and Stanley Cup Final on NBC will go head-to-head during Memorial Day Weekend.
Brian Quarstad of Inside Minnesota Soccer says a popular anchor with Fox Soccer Channel is leaving after 9 years.
And we’re going to end it there.
On this day of massive snow here in the Northeast, I’ll provide you with some linkage. Crazy day as local meteorologists first predicted 4-8 inches, then as the storm organized, the totals were revised upward and upward. Now, it appears we have more on the ground here. Not quite the perfect storm, but damn close. And who would have thought 49 states of the Union have snow on the ground? Including Hawaii? Insane.
Let’s do some linkage today to get our minds off the snow.
Michael Hiestand of USA Today gives us a reality check on ESPN’s ratings for the BCS.
Mike McCarthy of USA Today talks with the head of powerful sports agency IMG about a whole slew of topics including gambling.
Sean Leahy at USA Today’s The Huddle notes Jon Gruden’s announcement that he’ll return to ESPN next season.
Jason Gay of the Wall Street Journal looks at Brent Musburger giving Tostitos free advertising this week.
Ben Klayman from Reuters writes about General Motors signing a huge advertising deal with NBC for the 2012 London Olympics.
Milton Kent at Fanhouse doesn’t like how golf allows viewers to call in to report violations on PGA Tour players.
Fanhouse’s Viv Bernstein finds that former college basketball analyst Billy Packer is not being docile in his retirement from broadcasting.
Mike Reynolds from Multichannel News notes that GolTV will air a Central America soccer tournament.
Anthony Crupi of Mediaweek looks at ESPN’s record ratings for the BCS National Championship Game.
Anthony writes in Adweek that ESPN will be a big sponsor target this year.
Toni Fitzgerald of Media Life Magazine also writes about ESPN’s ratings for Auburn-Oregon.
The great Darren Rovell of CNBC has his Golden Rules of Twitter.
Noah Davis of SportsNewser looks at LeBron James’ tweeting at the expense of his old Cleveland Cavs team.
Glenn Davis of SportsGrid reviews the premiere episode of Onion SportsDome.
Across the pond, David Evans of Autosport notes that ESPN UK has obtained the rights to the popular World Rally Championship, keeping the sport away from free TV in England.
Chad Finn of the Boston Globe notes a Boston connection to Onion SportsDome.
Richard Sandomir of the New York Times wasn’t too thrilled with Brent Musburger’s call of the BCS National Championship Game.
Richard talks about Yahoo! Sports launching an all-new online magazine.
Speaking of the new Yahoo! Sports online magazine, called The PostGame, it has a feature on Fang’s Bites fave, Charissa Thompson.
Newsday’s Neil Best looks at the love-hate, mostly hate relationship between the New York Jets and WFAN’s Mike Francesa.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union notes that Time Warner Cable will produce several AHL games.
Ken Schott from the Schenectady Gazette says ESPN’s Dick Vitale will remain in the fold for a while.
Jason Reid of the Washington Post recaps the DC Sports Owner summit.
David Barron of the Houston Chronicle says the BCS’ ratings on cable are down considerably from when the games were on broadcast TV.
John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer says Dish and DirecTV subscribers will be able to see tonight’s Cincinnati Bearcats game.
Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel notes that Packers-Eagles is the most watched TV show of the season.
Bob says CBS’ Bill Cowher gives praise to the Packers’ defensive plan to contain the Eagles’ Michael Vick.
Phil Rosenthal of the Chicago Tribune talks about Brent Musburger’s Tostitos plug late in the BCS National Championship Game.
The Chicago Sun-Times picks up a story that local NBC affiliate sports anchor Mike Adamle has been arrested on DUI charges.
Scott D. Pierce at the Salt Lake Tribune wonders if ESPN can objectively report on college football and the BCS.
Bruce Dowbiggin of the Toronto Globe and Mail handicaps the upcoming changes in Canadian sports radio.
Steve Lepore at Puck The Media breaks news that NBC will have six hours of coverage for Hockey Day in America next month.
Steve also compares Tuesday’s editions of NHL Overtime and NHL on the Fly.
Paulsen at Sports Media Watch notes that the BCS National Championship on ESPN finished lower in the ratings than the game on ABC last year.
Joe Favorito says the Indianapolis Colts may have lost Saturday, but won with its social networking approach to its FanCam.
Awful Announcing has Twitter reaction to Onion SportsDome.
And that will do it for today. I’ll be digging out the rest of the day.
Let’s do your mid-week linkage. I’m stuck at the home office in Rhode Island so while I’m waiting on a few things, I’ll give you links.
Looks like Jay the Rat might have escaped charges as the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office is declining to press charges against Jay Mariotti. The Big Lead links us to the Beverly Hills Courier which reports that the case has been referred to the LA City Attorney’s Office. Mariotti was arrested last month on charges he allegedly beat up his girlfriend. He has not written for Fanhouse and not appeared on ESPN since then.
SportsbyBrooks explains that Mariotti can still face charges.
USA Today’s Michael Hiestand writes that Fox NFL Sunday’s studio analysts will be making cameo cut-ins on game broadcasts.
At the Indiana University National Sports Journalism Center, Eric Deggans of the St. Petersburg Times lectures the WaPo’s Mike Wise on his failure to understand the new age of online journalism. Very good article.
Milton Kent at Fanhouse says NFL Commish Roger Goodell isn’t happy with Jets coach Rex Ryan’s language on Hard Knocks, but won’t go so as far to fine him.
Milton has a short blurb on Rich Eisen’s new duties at NFL Network/NFL.com.
To Press Coverage where Dan Levy likes the idea of Rich Eisen doing a weekly podcast for NFL.com.
Brian Lowry at Fox Sports feel announcers ramp up the hyperbole way too much.
Mike Reynolds of Multichannel News says NESN is launching a national version of its channel to Time Warner Cable systems in the Carolinas and is looking to add more markets.
Mike Shields from Mediaweek writes that ESPN and YouTube have teamed up to encourage fans to upload their own highlights that could be aired on SportsCenter.
Louisa Ada Seltzer of Media Life Magazine says Monday’s Boise State-Virginia Tech game garnered strong ratings for ESPN beating all programming on both cable and network TV.
TV Technology says Sony will sponsor an ESPN 3D college football series.
The great Darren Rovell of CNBC says Boise State continues to hit the marketing jackpot as its football continues to grow in stature.
In Digital Spy, Andrew Laughlin says ESPN UK has hired a new executive to head its channel.
From All Media Scotland, we find that a Scottish sports reporter is heading across the Atlantic to work for ESPN International in the US.
Michael Bodley of The Australian notes that ESPN International is airing Monday Night Football down under.
All Access reports that Fox Sports Radio’s Tony Bruno and Bay Area sports radio host Gary Radnich will front a new weekly show for Comcast SportsNet California.
The New York Times’ Richard Sandomir says the director of the 30 for 30 documentary on George and Hal Steinbrenner bit off more than she could chew.
Ken Belson at the Times notes that while some sports arenas and stadiums are just memories to sports fans, their debt remains very much alive to taxpayers.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union has the NFL Week 1 TV schedule with the games shown in the Capital Region.
The Myrtle Beach (SC) Sun-News’ Coastal Carolina Home & Lifestyle profiles South Carolina native Wendi Nix of ESPN.
Tom Jones of the St. Petersburg Times doesn’t appreciate a Cleveland Plain-Dealer writer making fun of Tampa.
John Bedell of the South Lake (FL) News-Sun looks at several upcoming film and stage projects on the late Vince Lombardi.
Mark Lorando of the New Orleans Times-Picayune says tonight’s premiere of America’s Game on the Saints’ Super Bowl XLIV win will not disappoint fans.
In the Dallas Morning News, Barry Horn has the NFL TV Week 1 schedule for the Metroplex.
Richard Olive of the San Antonio Express-News notes a local resident is part of the new Big Break: Dominican Republic that will start airing on Golf Channel later this month.
The Chicago Tribune’s Phil Rosenthal says the local Fox affiliate has found its sports anchor.
Robert Feder also writes about the Fox Chicago move.
Over to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel where Bob Wolfley tells us that many prognosticators are picking the Green Bay Packers to do well this season.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune begins a new partnership with Fox Sports North for high school sports coverage.
Helene Elliot at the Los Angeles Times notes that all but one of the Anaheim Ducks games will be available on local television.
Bruce Dowbiggin at the Toronto Globe and Mail says it’s time for the CFL to start building new stadiums.
William Houston at Truth & Rumours returned from a summer hiatus to announce that he’s shutting down. For now. Nice, William.
SportsNewser says NBC News and the National Science Foundation will be teaming up to produce an educational series on the Science of the NFL.
Sports Media Watch notes that ESPN on ABC’s Saturday Night Football got off to a rough ratings start.
SMW also has more college football ratings news.
Steve Lepore at Puck The Media notes that former New Jersey Devil Bobby Holik will be a regular analyst on NHL Network’s On The Fly.
Jared Smith at Awful Announcing can’t believe that there’s another ESPN segment featuring arguing sportswriters.
Brian Packey at AA noticed a boob grab at last night’s Marlins-Phillies game.
Ok, I’ve done all I can to find links. Gotta work. Gotta look productive. Back later.
It was a three day weekend for most of you. It wasn’t for me as I worked all three days, but you don’t want to hear my complaints, you want to see the linkage so I’ll do that. Plenty of stuff to get to.
Sean Leahy of USA Today surveys all 32 NFL teams and looks at the possibility of TV blackouts in each market for this season.
USA Today’s Michael Hiestand notes that Versus will launch a new show starring Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens.
Rick Kissell at Variety says it appears Monday’s Boise State-Virginia Tech did well for ESPN.
At Sports Media Journal, Southeastern New England media mogul Keith Thibault announces a site hiatus. It also affects the Sports Media Weekly which Keith and I co-host. I’ll have an announcement on a new podcast coming up.
Mike Florio at Pro Football Talk discusses the looming local NFL blackouts this season.
Mike writes that NFL Network’s Rich Eisen has agreed to a new contract with the channel which is very good news.
Jon Lafayette at Broadcasting & Cable says Big Ten Network is primed to have a successful season.
Over to Mike Reynolds at Multichannel News who looks at Versus premiering the new show with Ochocinco and T.O.
Mike says NFL Network is making its Thursday Night Football package into a three man booth.
I’ve written a post for Press Coverage on two sports media stories that broke over the holiday weekend.
Andrew Laughlin of Digital Spy UK says ESPN UK is getting ready to air Monday Night Football in England.
The New York Post’s Phil Mushnick gets on ESPN/ABC’s Matt Millen for not telling the whole story about Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez.
Newsday’s Bob Glauber looks at Dan Hampton’s apology after making light of Hurricane Katrina on Pro Football Weekly.
Ken Schott from the Schenectady Gazette says he won’t be watching the new T.O./Ochocinco show.
Keith Groller in the Allentown (PA) Morning Call says the radio voice of a local minor league baseball team has been very busy over the last three seasons.
Washington Post Ombudsman Andrew Alexander weighs in for a second time on the Mike Wise suspension for posting a fake tweet.
The Post’s Dan Steinberg in the DC Sports Bog has DC NFL team coach Mike Shanahan lecturing the media.
Completing a WaPo trifecta, Sally Jenkins says the late Vince Lombardi lives on through books, movies and a new Broadway play.
Vito Stellino of the St. Augustine (FL) Record says this Sunday’s Jacksonville Jaguars game against the Denver Broncos will be sold out and avoid a local TV blackout (scroll down). Thanks to J.P. Kirby at the506.com for the link.
Rick Stroud of the St. Petersburg Times says a blackout is a distinct possibility for Tampa Bay Buccaneers home opener against the Browns.
Ed Sherman of Crain’s Chicago Business has a Bears official responding to a negative Forbes article on the team.
Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times says while the NFL is enjoying higher TV ratings, it wants some of those fans to experience the games in person.
In the Huffington Post, Brian Frederick of the Sports Fan Coalition says Comcast and Cablevision are screwing fans in Philadelphia and in New York.
Brady Green at Awful Announcing says ESPN’s Robert Flores made a “rippin’ and the tearin’” reference on SportsCenter. If you don’t know what that means, the post will on AA will explain. Oh, the humanity.
The Be Your Own Fan site gets a tour of the MLB Network facilities from Harold Reynolds.
MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann writes in his MLB blog about how he came to dislike Buck Showalter’s intimidation methods.
We’ll end it there.
Thanks to its modified agreement with the NFL that gives it streaming rights in the US, ESPN can now air Monday Night Football in the UK on its owned and operated channel, appropriately named, ESPN UK. Actually it’s named ESPN in the UK, but for our purposes, it’ll be ESPN UK. It’ll air live in the UK which means it will actually be early Tuesday morning, meaning 2:30 a.m. GMT and 1:30 a.m. in London. The American ex-pats will probably watch. The contract with the NFL also allows for re-airs later on Tuesday. Here’s the press release complete with UK English.
ESPN TO TELEVISE NFL MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL IN UK
ESPN UK will be the only place in the UK to watch the NFL game of the week liveLondon, 29 March 2010 – ESPN will add exclusive coverage of American Football’s Monday Night Football to its programme schedule for next season. The iconic US sports franchise features 17 games per season and is the only NFL game each week televised on Monday nights, and regularly features many of the league’s top matchups.The longest-running and most successful primetime sports show in US television history, Monday Night Football will debut on ESPN UK on September 14 at 1am GMT. Each week, the game of the week will be televised live, and will also be re-aired the following day. Scheduling details for the repeat will be released closer to the beginning of the NFL season.Each week ESPN will also televise the company’s 90-minute pre-game programme, Monday Night Countdown. Hosted by ESPN’s Chris Berman and originating from both Bristol and on-site at the game, Monday Night Countdown previews the night’s Monday Night Football matchup.Jeroen Oerlemans, Vice President, ESPN, TV Channels Europe, Middle East and Africa said, “Monday Night Football is an enormous global sports franchise with an incredibly strong heritage, and it regularly features the very best NFL matchup of the week. With the NFL’s continued growth in the UK, this is another example of how we are building quality global programming around our core UK sports schedule.”Added Hans Schroeder, NFL vice president, media strategy and development, “We are pleased to expand our partnership with ESPN in serving our fans in the U.K. who are passionate about the NFL. ESPN will continue to do an outstanding job of bringing our fans closer to our sport in new ways.”Monday Night Football joins a broad portfolio of top sport on ESPN next season, headlined by the Barclay’s Premiere League, the FA Cup, Guinness Premiership rugby, Clydesdale Bank Premier League, Europa League, the German Bundesliga, UFC, French Top 14 rugby, NBA basketball, DTM, Australian Rules Football and much more.Celebrating its 40th year this autumn, Monday Night Football has aired exclusively on ESPN in the US since 2006. Since then, it has registered eight of the top 10 all-time biggest household audiences on pay television, including the Green Bay Packers-Minnesota Vikings broadcast on October 5, 2009, which attracted the biggest US cable audience ever (21.8 million viewers). Monday Night Football has also earned critical acclaim, earning 25 Emmy Awards throughout its history.Created by sports broadcasting pioneer and former ABC Sports president Roone Arledge, Monday Night Football premiered on September 21, 1970. As one of US televisions premiere properties, it has attracted celebrity guests ranging from John Lennon to former US President Bill Clinton and then-Senator Barack Obama.
I just wonder how the British will react to Chris Berman and Stuart Scott on Monday Night Countdown.
Always glad to post press releases from the UK.