12/07/18: The LPGA announced its events and stakes for the 2019 season

CynopsisSports
Good morning. It’s Friday December 7, 2018 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

 
The LPGA cemented plans for the 2019 season, lining up a schedule that will include 33 official events, as well as the biennial Solheim Cup. The Tour will visit 15 states and 12 countries and offer a record $70.55 million in official prize money, up from $65.35 million in 2018, with the season’s largest purses come at the U.S. Women’s Open Championship and the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship, both with $5 million at stake. The 2019 season features four new tournaments, include the inaugural The Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions presented by Insurance Office of America, which will kick off the year from Jan. 17-20.
 
“We are in one of the most exciting periods of time in LPGA history,” said LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan. “One look at our 2018 season shows the breadth of global talent on our Tour, and I have no doubt that 2019 will continue this upward trend. We are not only proud of our Tour growth, but also the growth of our LPGA Teachers, LPGA Amateurs and LPGA-USGA Girls-Golf efforts.”
 
 
PROGRAMMING

CBS Sports is on deck for the 119th edition of the Army/Navy football classic from Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia on Saturday on CBS. Brad Nessler and Gary Danielson call the action with Jamie Erdahl reporting from the sideline. Pregame coverage kicks off with two-and-a-half hours on CBS Sports Network with features on the two networks that will examine the importance of the Army cheer, the origin of the “I Believe That We Will Win” chant, and more.
 
Telemundo Deportes locked in broadcast rights to carry live coverage of the second leg of the River-Boca Copa Libertadores final on Sunday, December 9, from Santiago Bernabéu in Madrid. The matchup will air live on Telemundo at 2p with a special pre-game show. The game will also be available on cable television on Fox Deportes. “This acquisition is another step forward in our commitment to continue adding the best and biggest sports to our programming lineup,” said Ray Warren, President of Telemundo Deportes. “We are excited to bring Telemundo viewers one of the most anticipated matchups of the year, complemented by extensive pre/post coverage led by our renowned experts.”
 
The World Long Drive Association rolled out its 2019 schedule which will see a boost in televised events running Golf Channel with six in the cards on top of more than a dozen qualifiers around the world that will lead into the Volvik World Long Drive Championship from Aug. 30-Sept. 4. In 2018, WLD posted its most-viewed season ever, with 8.3 million unique viewers (+23% year-over-year) according to data released by The Nielsen Company. This year’s schedule will include the first-ever Celebrating Service: Fort Jackson event that will feature a division represented by military service members competing alongside World Long Drive athletes, and will contribute to a stretch of televised WLD events airing live on Golf Channel each month from April-September. The season opens on April 16 with Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun.
 
ESPN’s Baseball Tonight joins the media invasion of the Las Vegas strip for the 2018 Baseball Winter Meetings. Multiple editions of the show will air daily on ESPN2 from Dec. 10-Dec. 12, located at a set inside the Mandalay Bay Resort. Veteran ESPN MLB voice Karl Ravech will host each episode with analyst and World Series Champion Mark Teixeira, analysts Eduardo Perez and Jim Bowden and reporters Buster Olney and Tim Kurkjian, plus a variety of guests.
 
CBS Sports Network and Hall of Fame Productions will partner to televise 10 hours of exclusive youth football content that will air over a 10-day period this month. As part of the agreement, CBS Sports Network is the “Official Network Partner of the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Youth Initiatives” and will see more than 30 All-Americans head to Mexico City to announce their college choice on National Signing Day on Dec. 19. CBS Sports Network will televise a live three-hour show from 10a-1p. The coverage begins on Dec. 17 at 9p with a one-hour special previewing the week of youth football events taking place in Canton and Mexico City. CBS Sports Network will also air the World Bowl Presented by Xenith on Dec. 27 at 7p at Azul Stadium in Mexico City
 
NBC Sports and the Premier League will welcome fans to the Premier League Mornings Live Fan Fest on Saturday in Manhattan. Fans around the country will see NBC Sports offer “live look-ins” from Premier League viewing parties across the country, including at locations in Dallas, Louisville, and San Diego. Special guests at the event will include Marcus Mumford and Winston Marshall from Mumford & Sons, who will be the musical guests for this weekend’s Saturday Night Live, New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia, former U.S. MNT player Claudio Reyna, and Snapchat personality Francis Maxwell.
 
Telemundo Deportes offers exclusive coverage of the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2018 with coverage starting Dec. 12. Coverage will be led by Telemundo Deportes’ Andres Cantor, Manuel Sol, Carlos Hermosillo, Copan Alvarez, Sammy Sadovnik and Eduardo Biscayart.
 
Golf Channel lined up its latest Golf Films project, 27 Years: The Exoneration of Valentino Dixon, debuting Tuesday at 8p. The progam is narrated by actor Wendell Pierce and will examine Valentino Dixon, who had been serving a 33 1/3 years to life sentence in prison for a murder he claims he did not commit and was released from prison following a series of events in Sept.
 
FloSports announced a multiyear partnership with the United States Auto Club to offer live and on-demand coverage of more than 80 races per year exclusively on FloRacing.com. The deal kicks in on Jan. 1 with broadcasts set to include all of USAC Racing’s flagship National Championship events in its Silver Crown Championship, AMSOIL National Sprint Series and the NOS Energy Drink National Midget Championship.
 
Monumental Sports Network has announced that it will be the exclusive viewing platform for the ARS National Hoopfest Tournament and Art Turner Memorial Dec. 7-9. The event features five of the top 15 USA Today Preseason nationally-ranked boys high school teams and serves as an annual showcase for a myriad of McDonald’s All-Americans as well as current NBA stars. The Art Turner Memorial Tournament will boast four teams in the Max Prep girls national high school basketball rankings.
 
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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

Visa continues to shore up its partnerships, unveiling new deals with the Union of European Football Associations’ (UEFA) Women’s Football Competitions and the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Total Africa Cup of Nations tournament. Visa will implement its innovative payment technology at the tournament venues and deliver exclusive experiences for cardholders and clients. The deal with the UEFA Women’s Football Competitions runs through 2025 and will see Visa collaborate with UEFA for the 2021 Women’s European Championships in the United Kingdom and the annual Women’s Champions League beginning in 2019. The partnership with CAF makes the brand a sponsor of the Total Africa Cup of Nations tournament in 2019 and 2021, making Visa the exclusive payment services provider at all venues and the official partner of the player escort program.
 
The 2019 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic mapped out festivities in Chicago’s Jay Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park for the three-day free fan festival. From Dec. 29-31, the NHL and its corporate partners will offer interactions and experiences, including autograph sessions featuring former Chicago Blackhawks and Boston Bruins greats, hockey interactives, giveaways, food, live music and a special appearance by the Stanley Cup. NHL corporate partners Bridgestone, Discover, Dunkin’, Federal Mogul, Fisherman’s Friend, GEICO, Honda, Kraft Heinz, MillerCoors, New Amsterdam Vodka, Pepsi/Frito-Lay, PPG, Ticketmaster and Upper Deck will all activate.
 
Speaking of fests, Bud Light announced that Post Malone will join the lineup for the first-ever Bud Light Super Bowl Music Festival taking place on Feb. 1, as a special guest alongside American rock band Aerosmith at Atlanta’s State Farm Arena.
 
United Rentals was named the presenting sponsor of the third annual Never Forget Tribute Classic, an annual NCAA men’s basketball doubleheader taking place on Dec. 8 at Prudential Center in Newark and running on ESPN2. Chris Hummel, CMO for United Rentals, said, “United Rentals has a proud tradition of giving back to the communities where we live and work, and the Never Forget Tribute Classic creates an opportunity to align with a good cause. It’s a privilege to lend our support to families impacted by the devastating events of September 11.”
 
 
DIGITAL, DATA & STREAMING

Following the World Championship fight last weekend between WBC Champion Deontay Wilder and lineal heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, SHOWTIME Sports, with support of CBS Consumer Products, is launching an ecommerce brand dedicated solely to the premium network’s boxing franchise. the platform, showtimeboxingshop.com, will be operated by The Ave and feature a wide range of products ranging from apparel (tees/tanks, hoodies, shoes), to limited edition TOPPS digital trading cards to a collection of jewelry (rings & pendants) from Bixler.
 
 
ESPORTS
 
NASCAR, Race Team Alliance and 704Games are combining their superpower to form the first-ever NASCAR esports league on consoles titled, eNASCAR Heat Pro League. The league will feature up to 16 race teams and 32 drivers, with each owned and operated by key NASCAR race teams. Fans can now play NASCAR Heat 3 to qualify for the first-ever eNASCAR Heat Pro League Draft, scheduled to take place early next year. Following the Draft, the esports league will feature a 16-race season beginning in spring 2019 and culminating during the 2019 NASCAR Playoffs. All eNASCAR Heat Pro League races will be live streamed online at NASCAR.com and Motorsport.com. Teams participating in the new esports venture include: Chip Ganassi Racing, Hendrick Motorsports, Joe Gibbs Racing, JR Motorsports, Richard Childress Racing, Roush Fenway Racing, Stewart-Haas Racing and Team Penske. Each of the participating teams will field two drivers, one competing on Xbox One and the other on PlayStation4.
 
Turner & IMG’s ELEAGUE, in partnership with Psyonix, will offer another round of the Esports 101 franchise, this time featuring Rocket League. The episode, ELEAGUE’s Esports 101: Rocket League, runs tonight at 11p on TBS and “will take viewers through the fast-paced game’s professional landscape, including its cars, offensive and defensive strategies, tournaments, players, teams and more.”
 
Call of Duty World League detailed plans to make ASTRO Gaming “the official complete audio solution” for the 2019 Call of Duty World League season via the ASTRO TR Main Stage Audio System.
 
Global esports organization, Gen.G, announced the formation of a new dedicated ‘Streamer Team’ and a new sponsorship agreement with DESKER, Fursys Group’s furniture brand for designers and start-ups, who will sponsor the team for 2019. The Streamer Team features ex-Gen.G players, Yoonroot and Miro, who will focus on broadcasting engaging livestream gaming content to fans around the world.
 
 
INDUSTRY/ROSTER MOVES

The NFL named Christopher Halpin as Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy & Growth Officer. In his new role, Halpin will be responsible for NFL strategy, the management of the league’s key strategic growth and development opportunities, including its International business, and Data & Analytics. Meanwhile, Executive Vice President of International Mark Waller will work with Halpin through the end of the season to transition leadership of the International team, and then take on a new role as Senior Advisor.
 
SeventySix Capital announced that NFL legend Brian Westbrook has joined the firm’s Athlete Venture Group as an investor. “I’m excited to continue my efforts in the business world with SeventySix Capital and their Athlete Venture Group,” said Westbrook, “As a dedicated host, philanthropist and businessperson, the SeventySix Capital team and their portfolio of startup companies is the perfect fit for me.”
 
Intersport appointed Ryan McSpadden as Executive Vice President, Strategic Partnerships. McSpadden will be responsible for bringing Intersport’s innovative ideas, content and experiences to senior level marketing executives, brand managers and agencies across the sports, entertainment, lifestyle, culinary and media landscape.
 
 
THE MAIN EVENT

The MLS Cup sees the Portland Timbers/Atlanta United FC on Saturday at 8p on FOX and UniMas.
 
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
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Cynopsis is excited to honor stand-out performers, innovators and emerging leaders in the media industry. The experience of these young superstars spans research, sports, digital, content and marketing – join us in congratulating them for jobs well done. Honorees will be celebrated at the Cynopsis TV Awards, the ultimate gathering of media’s best & brightest, taking place on February 6th at the Yale Club in NYC!
 
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ON THIS DAY in 1963: CBS debuts instant replay in the Army-Navy game.
 
In the Know: Other than Roger Staubach, name one other player from Army or Navy who won the Heisman Trophy. (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 joined players such as Roger Craig, Earl Campbell, Tony Dorsett, Jim Kelly and Ed ‘Too Tall’ Jones in cameos for this college football themed comedy about the Fightin’ Armadillos. What is the name of the movie? Answer: Necessary Roughness. Kudos: Rob Casalaina-ITN/NY; Len Appel-TMZ/TMZ Sports/NY; Chris Long-DraftKings/NY; Bob Dudelson-Leverage Agency/NY; Matt Marini-NFL/NFL Films/NJ; Jonny Codalata-CSM Sport & Entertainment/Indianapolis; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Joe Lyons-ESPN/Dallas; Bill Goodfriend-Spectrum Reach/St. Louis; Aimee Clark-Tony Fay PR/Dallas; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank; Willie Price-American Forces Network/Riverside; Nick Monroe-Monroe Photography/San Diego; Andy Babb-Super League Gaming/Santa Monica
 
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