Good morning. It's Monday, October 15, 2012, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.
Friday saw the end of a 17-year marriage, with Formula One leaving FOX Sports Group and Speed. Sunday saw a new matrimony, however, with NBC Sports Group nabbing a four-year deal with the racing organization for the exclusive U.S. media rights to the world's most popular global motorsports series, according to the AP. The deal revs up next season with four races on NBC, and the remaining 16 races, (as well as all practices and qualifying sessions) locked in on NBC Sports Network for a tally of more than 100 hours of annual programming.
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
On the Air
TBS's coverage of MLB's American League Championship Series Game 1 on Saturday, pitting the Tigers and Yankees, drew a 4.2 U.S. household rating and more than 6.8 million total viewers, based on Nielsen Fast Nationals. The telecast ranked as the highest-rated and most-viewed of the 2012 MLB Postseason, and marked a 104% bump among total viewers compared with last year's NLCS Game 1 on TBS and a gain of 100% in average U.S. household rating. Locally, the telecast registered a 25.9 metered market rating in Detroit and a 14.4 in New York.
Friday's elimination games for MLB's Division Series on TBS saw a 3.6 average rating and 5.5 million viewers for the channel's doubleheader. Game 5 of the Cardinals/Nationals game dropped year-to-year, drawing a 3.7 score with 5.9 million viewers, according to Nielsen, off-pace by 28% in ratings and 30% in viewership from last year's game 5 between the Cardinals/Phillies. However, the Orioles/Yankees game was up over 2011 with a 3.5 rating and 5.1 million viewers, for spikes of 17% and 11% respectively.
On the football front, NBC's coverage of Notre Dame's win over Stanford scored a 3.9 rating to top the college broadcast rankings for the week in early overnight numbers. Meanwhile, ABC's regionalized coverage of the West Virginia/Texas Tech blowout drew a 3.1, CBS' Alabama/Missouri game scored a 2.1 and FOX's USC/Washington matchup scored a 1.8.
Chicago White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski rejoined FOX Sports as a pregame and postgame analyst for coverage of the 2012 NLCS and World Series. This marks Pierzynski's second-straight as an analyst for the network and he joins Matt Vasgersian alongside Eric Karros and Harold Reynolds. In addition, Erin Andrews made her MLB on FOX postseason debut last night, as a field reporter for each game alongside Ken Rosenthal.
CBS Sports made its pick for Saturday's SEC ON CBS matchup, selecting the South Carolina/Florida game for the weekly game. Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson will call the contest, along with reporter Tracy Wolfson from Gainesville.
CBS won't be the only ones in Gainesville, as ESPN's College GameDay crew will also return for the first time since 2009, and its 11th all-time visit. College GameDay will air live at 9a on ESPNU and 10a on ESPN. The company also announced its SEC slate for the weekend, with LSU/Texas A&M at noon on ESPN, Middle Tennessee/Mississippi St at 7p on ESPN2; and Alabama/Tennessee at 7p on ESPN.
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
Sponsorship & Promotion
OfficeMax announced that the company has inked a title sponsorship deal for the Hockey City Classic in Chicago this February. The event marks the first outdoor college hockey doubleheader at Soldier Field on Feb. 17, 2013. The OfficeMax Hockey City Classic is organized by marketing agency Intersport in partnership with Soldier Field, the Chicago Park District and the Chicago Sports Commission. Teams participating will include Notre Dame/Miami RedHawks, followed by the Minnesota Golden Gophers/Wisconsin Badgers.
2K Sports announced that sales of the NBA 2K13 video game have reached record levels for the franchise, with the company reporting a 49% spike in sell-through copies than the franchise's previous fastest-seller in its first week of sales. International sales accounted for a 66% hike compared to NBA 2K11.
IMG Worldwide, purchased a majority share in live sports data provider Enetpulse, The data company serves as the exclusive worldwide distributor of official live scoring data for tennis tours ATP and the WTA.
The Main Event
Cardinals/Giants at 8p on FOX.
ON THIS DAY in 1989: Wayne Gretzky passes Gordie Howe to become the NHL's all-time top scorer.
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: From what school did the Bears draft Brian Urlacher? The University of New Mexico. Kudos: Keith Bielory-Step UP Management/NY; Karam Khosa-Disney-ESPN Media Networks/NY; Bobby Coyle-Yankees Radio Network/NY; Ari Johnson-SNY/NY; Doug Drotman-Drotman Communications/Commack; Tony Ferranti-MMSI/Warwick; Tom Haidinger-Advantage International/Darien; Peter SP Gimber-WBZ-TV & myTV38/Boston; Chuck Gordon-WABM-TV/Birmingham; Greg Finch-Time Warner Media/Dallas; Kevin Micklo-Initiative Media/Chicago; Jim Dittemore-I Will Race You/KC; Michael Jaquet-US Ski and Snowboard Team/Park City; Harry S. Vested, Jr.-Gravity Collection Inc./Denver; Greg Moloznik-GLM Media/Scottsdale; Aly Stogol-KOLD/KMSB/KTTU/Tucson; Sean Boyle-Discovery Channel/LA; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Larry Hutchings-Retired/LA.
In The Know: Georgetown's only NCAA Tournament Championship came at the expense of which team? (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.)
Later -- Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports
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