08/25/15: Under Armour’s Rules of engagement; SportSouth will be no more; USGA continues its ride with Lexus



CYNOPSISSPORTS
08.25.15

Good morning. It’s Tuesday August 25, 2015, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

Under Armour unveiled its new Rule Yourself mantra, designed to define the brand’s vision for training as a lifestyle. Opening the campaign is the 60-second "Anthem" spot with a slate of shorter films that will debut this fall season featuring NBA MVP Stephen Curry, American Ballet Theatre Principal dancer Misty Copeland, two-time golf major champion Jordan Spieth and NFL MVP and Super Bowl Champion Tom Brady. The campaign was created in partnership with Droga5 and Wally Pfister. The brand will launch the 360-degree global campaign with media partners that include ESPN, NBC, CBS, MTV, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and a variety of lifestyle, digital and mobile outlets.

"The concept of the ‘Rule Yourself’ campaign is simple  you are the sum of all of your training. It’s the only way to get better, and it’s the common thread that unites each of our all-star athletes around the globe," said Adam Peake, Executive Vice President, Global Marketing, Under Armour. "Under Armour provides the gear, equipment and digital tools the athlete needs to push through a tough workout. But we also want to give them that extra inspiration to improve everyday, to keep building their inner army and to stay focused on success even when the going gets tough."

ON THE AIR

Just ahead of the US Open, ESPN locked in its tennis team, with coverage set to begin on Aug. 31. Chris Fowler hosts two weeks of telecasts with the on-air roster is set to include Darren Cahill, Mary Joe Fernandez, Jason Goodall, Brad Gilbert, and Patrick McEnroe; as well as Hall of Famers Cliff Drysdale, Chrissie Evert, John McEnroe and Pam Shriver. The team is joined by reporters Tom Rinaldi and LZ Granderson, as well as hosts Chris McKendry, Hannah Storm and Mike Tirico, who also calls matches.

Around the dial on Tennis Channel, the network serves up daily tournament lead-in show, Tennis Channel Live at the US Open, which will expand to three hours from its half-hour runs in previous years. The series will be hosted by Mary Carillo and Brett Haber and begins this week at 8a. with a team of coaches, reporters and Hall of Fame analysts, the morning program will again Each morning will see Carillo and Haber recap the latest tournament activity and prepare viewers for the upcoming day’s play. Other talent taking part include: Martina Navratilova, Jim Courier and Lindsay Davenport, who will appear as analysts, as will Paul Annacone and Sports Illustrated’s Jon Wertheim.

Jay Crawford locked in a long-term deal to remain with ESPN for the long haul. He will continue his role as SportsCenter anchor as well as a regular host of SportsCenter on the Road stops. Crawford has served as co-anchor of the mid-day SportsCenter since July 2012 and joined ESPN in August of 2003 as a co-host of ESPN2’s weekday morning show Cold Pizza.

NFL Media is memorializing the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina with a four-part series dubbed Marching Back: After the Storm. The series launches on Wednesday and runs through Saturday with all four features and additional elements running on NFL Total Access on Aug. 30. Content will include Michael Silver returning to New Orleans to remember his experiences as the first sports journalist to arrive in the city after Hurricane Katrina while Mark Kriegel traces the history of how the Saints stayed in New Orleans and how the Superdome was rebuilt after the storm.

CBS Sports continued its hot streak in golf as the third round of the Wyndham Championship on Saturday delivered the channel with a 3.2/8, up 220% over the comparable score a year ago, according to Nielsen. That’s the highest rated third round for the event in the metered markets in 22 years. The final round delivered a 3.9/9 for a 160% markup over 2014.

Say goodbye to FOX Sports RSN SportSouth which is getting a rebrand and will be known under the FOX Sports Southeast moniker starting Oct. 5. “FOX Sports is a universally recognized brand with clearly defined attributes of a dynamic attitude and excellence in sports production,” said Jeff Genthner, SVP and GM. “Changing SportSouth to FOX Sports Southeast better aligns our regional sports network with the FOX Sports brand, and ensures that all of the regional networks serving the Southeast  FOX Sports South, FOX Sports Carolinas, FOX Sports Tennessee and now FOX Sports Southeast  share in that dynamic brand strength and recognition.” FOX Sports Southeast will be noted as FSSE in television channel guides and all channel numbers will remain the same.

PBS gets in the ring with Muhammad Ali, announcing its slate for new series In Their Own Words, which debuts on Sept. 1 at 9p. The Ali episode will run on Sept. 8 will feature conversations with LL Cool J, Sugar Ray Leonard, Jim Brown, and photographer Howard Bingham discussing his legacy. Other episodes will include Queen Elizabeth II and Jim Henson.

ONE World Sports unveiled coverage plans for the 2015-16 Kontinental Hockey League season, marking the third year that ONE World Sports has been bringing the league to American fans starting this week. The channel will carry up to 99 live games, including 50 regular season contests as well as the postseason concluding with the Gagarin Cup Finals in April. Ed Cohen offers play-by-play analysis again this season.

RTM Productions announced that Katie Osborne has been named new host for automotive series PowerNation. “We are very excited to introduce Katie Osborne as the new host to our PowerNation viewers,” said RTM President Matthew Hawkins. “With her vast experience covering racing and sports for Fox Sports, ESPN, ABC, and NBC Sports Network among others, we believe that Katie will quickly connect with our viewers both on TV and the web!”


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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

The USGA and Lexus are renewing their corporate partnership, keeping the auto brand as the exclusive automotive partner of the organization through 2020. In addition to its support of USGA initiatives, Lexus supported the launch of coverage of USGA championships on Fox Sports, as well as the USGA’s effort to achieve a wider distribution of real-time championship highlights through the use of enhanced digital and social media tools. “We are excited to extend our relationship with Lexus,” said Sarah Hirshland, USGA senior managing director of business affairs. “Our affiliation began in 2007 when they became the first automotive partner in USGA history. During that time, the company has shown its commitment to golf and the work that the USGA is doing to support the game. The renewal offers the opportunity to continue to work together and expand our combined efforts.”

Speaking of extensions, the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach locked in a multi-year agreement with Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. and the Southern California Toyota Dealers Association to continue as the title sponsor of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. Toyota has been title sponsor of the event since 1980. As part of the new agreement, Toyota will once again become title sponsor of the Toyota Pro/Celebrity Race. “We are absolutely thrilled to continue our relationship with Toyota Motor Sales and the Southern California Toyota Dealers Association,” said Jim Michaelian, president and CEO of the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach. “They have been an extraordinary partner in our event from the very beginning, and we look forward to extending this relationship to new heights in the coming years.”

After introducing the world to “Bad Comic” Eli Manning and “Arts & Craftsy” Tony Romo, DIRECTV unveiled “Petite” Randy Moss to viewers as part of its NFL Sunday Ticket campaign. Moss joins NFL quarterbacks Eli and Peyton Manning, Tony Romo and Andrew Luck in the latest campaign promoting DIRECTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket and the spot can be found here

The Atlanta Falcons confirmed plans to dub its new home the Mercedes-Benz Stadium thanks to a new deal with the auto brand. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Mercedes-Benz USA President and CEO Steve Cannon called it "the single biggest marketing deal" in the company’s history, spanning the two years until it opens in 2017 and then running 25 years after that.

SOCIAL MEDIA

An apparent Jon Stewart heel turn helped propel WWE’s SummerSlam to the top of the social rankings on Sunday night. SummerSlam ranked as the most social program in primetime, generating more than 575,000 social and marks the most social SummerSlam in company history. Mentions were up 53% over the same event in 2014.

FANTASY/GAMING/ESPORTS

Hooters unveiled a partnership with DraftKings to customers a shot at more than $300,000 in cash and prizes this football season. The Hooters Fantasy Football Challenge, powered by DraftKings, unlocks free access for Hooters guests to challenge ESPN’s Jon Gruden every week. “As the football fan experience continues to evolve, Hooters is committed to deliver the best fantasy sports experiences anywhere  whether that’s providing the perfect backdrop for a draft party at your favorite Hooters, throwing the world’s largest fantasy football draft party or lining up free access to score real cash on DraftKings during the first six weeks of the season,” said Carl Sweat, CMO, Hooters.

ROSTER MOVES

The New Jersey Devils and Prudential Center named Daniel Cherry III as Chief Marketing & Innovation Officer where he will oversee the strategic direction and implementation of all marketing, communications and community initiatives. He most recently spent four years with Diageo in New York, NY, where he served as Senior Vice President, Marketing North America.

CSE President Adam Zimmerman is heading back to school, where he will serve as an adjunct professor for The University of Georgia for the 2015  2016 fall semester in addition to his duties at CSE. Zimmerman is teaching a course focusing on Sports Business as part of the Sports Marketing graduate program. 

THE MAIN EVENT

Astros/Yankees on MLB Network at 7p.



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SPORTS INDUSTRY.

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ON THIS DAY in 1978: MLB umps stage a 1-day strike.

In The Know: In the original Karate Kid movie, what is the name of the group looking to take down Ralph Macchio in the tournament? (Email Chris-Sports@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Jerry Rice’s final appearance in the regular season game came as a member of which NFL franchise? Answer: The Seahawks. Kudos: Andrew Feingold-Nielsen/NY; Denis Barry-CBS/NY; David Kalan-NHL.com/NY; Jon Sabal-Apartment Therapy Media/NY; Christine Ferrara-WBZ-TV/WSBK-TV/Boston; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Lance Phegley-Texas Runner and Triathlete magazine/Houston; Harry S. Vested, Jr.-GCSN/Denver; Michael Jaquet-U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association/Park City; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank; Doug Kelly-Foster Farms Bowl/South San Francisco.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports @VegasandVine
08.25.15

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