Good morning. It's Tuesday, July 24, 2012, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.
NBC Olympics is partnering with Twitter during the London 2012 Olympic Games in a move designed to drive viewership and interest. As part of the partnership, the pair will launch the first-ever Olympics event page in the U.S. at Twitter.com/#Olympics, as well as aggregating content on the #Olympics event page, promoting the event page with on air graphics, and reprise the NBC Olympic Twitter Tracker.
On the Air
I normally avoid these stories but given the NCAA's unprecedented approach and its impact on a national football brand, I am making an exception. The NCAA punished Penn State on Monday in response to the Jerry Sandusky child sexual molestation scandal. As part of the penalty, the university will be fined $60 million, have scholarships cut for four years, suffer a four-year postseason ban as well as vacate all wins from 1998-2011. Of course, the vacated victories also remove the late Joe Paterno as the winningest major college football coach in history. NCAA president Mark Emmert received approval from the board of directors to hand down the penalties.
FOX Sports chief David Hill, who will be honored at Cynopsis Sports Media Awards next month and served as Chairman and CEO of Fox Sports since 1999, has been promoted to Senior Executive Vice President, News Corporation. He will now focus on programming, digital initiatives and other opportunities across the company's operating units in Latin America, Asia, Australia, Europe and the U.S. Randy Freer and Eric Shanks, Co-Presidents of Fox Sports Media Group (FSMG) will now report to Peter Rice, who was made FOX Networks Group Chairman and CEO.
ESPN2 and ESPN3.com announced plans for the 2012 AT&T MLS All-Star Game tomorrow, beginning at 8:30p. Adrian Healey and Taylor Twellman will call the action at the All-Star event. The network also reports that through the 2012 MLS All-Star Game, MLS matches on ESPN and ESPN2 have been seen by an average audience of 345,000 viewers and 261,000 households to mark a jump of 12% and 9% respectively over the same period in 2011. Top five markets include Portland (0.5), New York (0.5), Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News, Va. (0.5), San Diego (0.4), and Greenboro-High Point, N.C. (0.4).
Pac-12 Networks continue to count down to launch next month with a deal with iN DEMAND. As part of its growing relationship with Pac-12 Enterprises, iN DEMAND is providing sports production services for the Pac-12 Networks, including mobile production facilities and below-the-line crews for all 12 schools in the collegiate conference as well as supply mobile production elements for hundreds of premier Pac-12 Olympic events.
The family of channels also announced a bevy of additional talent for the fall to anchor its live game and in-studio coverage of Pac-12 football. Among the names now on the roster include: Adam Archuleta, Curtis Conway, Ryan Nece, Glenn Parker, and Coy Wire who will contribute to both studio programming and live game telecasts. The Networks have also tapped broadcasting veterans Ted Robinson, Kevin Calabro and Dave Flemming as the primary play-by-play voices of Pac-12 Networks football telecasts, while Ashley Adamson joins Pac-12 Networks, anchoring coverage from the Networks studios in San Francisco. Brooke Olzendam and Yogi Roth also join the team as sideline reporters for live football telecasts.
CBS Sports Network is beefing up its lineup with expanded coverage of the 2012 US Open Tennis Championships in its live programming line-up. Programming will complement CBS Sports' coverage with air three days of live outer-court coverage over Labor Day weekend to showcase some of the third and fourth-round matches not shown during CBS Sports' live simultaneous broadcast. In addition, for the first time ever in tournament history, CBS Sports Network will televise US Open qualifying matches beginning Tuesday, Aug. 21 through Friday, August 24. The channel's programming also includes a live studio show, Today at the US Open, slated from 10-11a throughout Labor Day weekend.
ESPN's British Open coverage culminated with a 3.3 overnight rating, according to Nielsen, for a 50% gain in year-to-year numbers.
Former NBC Olympic Sports producer Christopher Crowley has been named Executive Producer for Outside Television, where he will be responsible for all original production from concept through execution for the network. Crowley now assumes immediate responsibility for Outside Television's morning program Outside Today, as well as the networks' newsmagazine series.
NESN named Joseph Maar as the Vice President of Programming & Production, Executive Producer. Maar's responsibilities will include leading, overseeing and managing NESN's production, programming and network operations teams. Maar most recently worked a FOX Sports North.
Join your colleagues in NYC on August 9for the Sports Media Awards Breakfast! View finalists & register to attend: http://ow.ly/bObiI.
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
Sponsorship & Promotion
The Insight Bowl is no more. Bowl organizers of the Tempe game inked a deal and the post-season event will now be known as the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl (does anyone remember the Copper Bowl?). The game pits teams form the Big Ten and Big 12.
PepsiCo announced a multi-year relationship with the Pittsburgh Steelers to be the franchise's exclusive non-alcoholic beverage, salty snacks and sports fuel provider. As part of the new sponsorship, PepsiCo will now gain exclusive selling, dispensing and serving rights at Heinz Field; as well as fixed stadium signage; venue and team sponsor assets; integration into the team's mobile, TV and digital assets; and local media and retail promotional opportunities.
IMG inked a deal with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte for a broad 10-year multimedia rights and sponsorship partnership that allows IMG College to manage and market all rights associated with Charlotte 49ers Athletics ad and sponsorship inventory, including radio, official athletic website, venue signage, and more.
IMG also announced a new local sponsorship with Southwest Airlines and The University of Texas that makes the company the official airline sponsor of The University of Texas Athletics and the school's Ex-Students' Association.
EA Sports is dropping its exclusive rights to college football games in 2014, according to Gamespot. The decision stems from a class-action antitrust lawsuit over "EA's exclusive hold of multiple football league licenses." According to lawyers, EA Sports agreed to a proposed settlement that would commit it to going at least five years without NCAA Football exclusivity, as well as paying out a potential $27 million to wronged customers.
MLB Advanced Media announced that its MLB.com At Bat 12 application surpassed the five million download mark on Saturday, to hit the milestone for the first time in a single season and just five months after its launch on February 29. Last year, At Bat saw 3.9 million total downloads.
The Main Event
Dodgers/Cardinals square off on MLB Network at 8:15p.
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
ON THIS DAY in 2005: Lance Armstrong wins his seventh Tour de France.
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: The Texas Rangers were originally known as what MLB franchise? The Washington Senators. Kudos: Tom Buffolano-Think Manhattan/NY; Michael Novara-ESPN/NY; Lewis Blaustein-Lewis Brand Solutions, Inc./NY; Matt Denerstein-Mindshare/NY; Pete Gautieri-AE Networks/Stamford; David Schaefer-Military Channel/Silver Spring; Adam Zimmerman-CSE/Atlanta; Carolyn Mailloux-Rawle Murdy Associates, Inc./Charleston; Bob Ramsey-WCIU/Chicago; Tom Akers-Outdoor Channel/Chicago; Lucie Prann-The Richards Group/Dallas; John Kukla-KDFW/Dallas; Matt Sautter-OpenTV/Golden; Adam Frank-Lionsgate/LA; Joe Pedri-KLAS-TV/Las Vegas; Roman Saienni-FOX Sports/LA; Alex Petrilli, Jr.-TiVo/ Alviso.
In The Know: With Paterno's wins now vacated, what coach is now the all-time leader in FBS coaching wins? (Email Chris-Sports@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: Only the second four correct answers from each time zone will be mentioned; and once you've been mentioned in any of the Cynopsis editions, you can't be mentioned again that calendar week.)
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
Later -- Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports
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