Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Cynopsis: Sports
05/10/12

Good morning. It’s Thursday, May 10, 2012, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

The ACC/ESPN deal is locked and loaded, with the two organizations inking a multi-platform extension that runs through the 2026-27 season. The AP reports estimate that the deal is worth $3.6 billion over the 15 year period and should deliver $17.1 million to the conference’s 14 schools on an annual basis, marking a significant hike over the $12.9 million the schools currently receive.

The new deal will feature a number of new elements to the mix, including more title sponsorship rights, more men’s regular-season and conference tournament basketball games, more conference football games, and dozens more Olympic sports competitions. The conference’s planned increase to an 18-game conference men’s basketball schedule combined with the additions of Pittsburgh and Syracuse will bring an increase of 30 conference men’s basketball games per year as well as two more conference tournament games. In football, 14 more conference-controlled games will be televised each year. In addition, ESPN has the right to televise three Friday ACC football contests annually which will include a standing commitment from Boston College and Syracuse to each host one game as well as an afternoon or evening game on Thanksgiving Friday. For the first time, ESPN has acquired title sponsorship rights, subject to conference approval, beyond football to all other conference championships including the men’s and women’s basketball tournaments.


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On the Air

The Pac-12 Networks locked up its first batch of talent, inking Ronnie Lott, Rick Neuheisel and Summer Sanders as on air personalities and the initial faces of the Pac-12 Networks. The trio are former Pac-12 student-athletes at USC, UCLA and Stanford respectively, with Sanders serving as a host and expert analyst for a variety of shows and events, while Lott and Neuheisel will serve as football analysts. The Pac-12 Networks will launch in August 2012, and consist of one national and six regional networks that will provide full-time access to Pac-12 teams and universities.

UConn is leaving public television behind and inking a deal with SNY as a home for women’s basketball games next season. Connecticut Public Television had served as the school’s broadcast partner for the past 18 years. The deal is worth $4.55 million over four years, or $1.14 million per year.

The NHL’s Board of Governors unanimously approved the sale of the St. Louis Blues to former minority owner Tom Stillman and a group of local investors. The deal is expected to also include the Blues’ minor league affiliate Peoria Rivermen and the management rights to the Blues’ home arena.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series star Carl Edwards is going to try his hand at the microphone, serving as an analyst for ESPN  on two upcoming telecasts of NASCAR Nationwide Series races. Edwards will make his debut during ESPN2’s live coverage of the NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway on Friday night, May 11, at 6:30p, joining Allen Bestwick and Andy Petree in the broadcast booth. He will also serve as an analyst for the June 29 event at Kentucky Speedway.

UFC on FOX 4 has its heavyweight headliners for the Los Angeles event. UFC officials told MMAWeekly.com that verbal agreements were in place for two heavyweight bouts, pitting Oli Thompson against Phil De Fries, and Matt Mitrione versus Rob Broughton.

Boston Red Sox public address announcer Carl Beane, who has served as the voice of Fenway Park since 2003, died in a one-car accident in central Massachusetts on Wednesday, according to local reports at the age of 59.

The FOX Saturday Baseball Game of the Week will divide the country neatly this weekend at 12:30p, with the Angles/Rangers slated to air in 38% of the country, and Matt Vasgersian, Eric Karros and Ken Rosenthal handling the microphones. Cubs/Brewers is cleared for 31%, while Mets/Marlins will be shown in 23%.

WFN: World Fishing Network announced that it is now available to Comcast Xfinity TV customers in Chicago, Chicagoland, Central Illinois, NW Indiana and SW Michigan markets as part of Comcast’s Sports Entertainment Package.

Sponsorship & Promotion

Quicken Loans inked a deal to serve as title sponsor of the Quicken Loans 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series set to take place at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan on Sunday, June 17.

The Professional Bull Riders named Lee Meredith as Director of Partnership Marketing for the organization. Meredith initially joined the PBR in February as a Partnership Marketing Executive and will continue to manage sponsor accounts as well as overseeing the Partnership Marketing team

ESPN Consumer Products is launching the X Games Tee Collection, which will be sold exclusively at Aeropostale stores across the U.S. and Canada and online at aeropostale.com. Beginning this month, the t-shirt collection, created by C-Life Group, consists of eight different men’s graphics, all inspired by the summer X Games and its’ impact on action sports lifestyle.

MLB, the Players Trust and State Farm are teaming up with Habitat for Humanity International in order to build new homes with families in Joplin, Missouri and Tuscaloosa, Alabama, which were two of the communities that were devastated by the tornadoes last year. Nine homes will be built in total these communities – five in Joplin; four in Tuscaloosa, with two of them to be framed near Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City in the backdrop of the 83rd MLB All-Star Game.


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Date: June 7, 2012
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Digital Fields

ESPN3 will carry the Euroleague Final Four basketball games live starting tomorrow from the Sinan Erdem Arena in Istanbul, Turkey. CSKA Moscow will take on Panathinaikos in the first semifinal, at 11a, followed by Olympiacos Piraeus vs. FC Barcelona Regal at 2p. The Euroleague Final is scheduled for Sunday, May 13, at 2p.

The Main Event

Bulls/76ers on NBA TV at 7p.



ON THIS DAY in 1970: Bobby Orr propels the Bruins to the Stanley Cup title.

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: What team drafted John Riggins out of Kansas? The New York Jets. Kudos: Michael Ritz-BucStar Consulting/NY; Fred Petrosino-JBG/NY; Michael Lee-Zenith Media/NY; Phyllis Toss-MAXUS/NY; Marc Wollis-NBC Sports Group/Orlando; Juan Delgado-Telemundo Media/Hialeah; Art Salisch-SMR/New Jersey; Jerry A. Kapner-Kapner Group/Montclair; Rick Selah-TargetSpot/Dallas; Ron Salcedo-Zimmerman/Nashville; Jim Dittemore-I Will Race You MotorSports Management/Kansas City; Valerie Tucker-VALJTUC Management/Garden Grove; Richard Murphy-ATVN/LA; Craig Skrzypecki-Speedmedia/LA.

In The Know: What is the only school to ever leave the ACC? (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
05.10.12

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