Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Cynopsis: Sports

Good morning. It’s Wednesday, December 12, 2012, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

CBS Sports is lining up a bevy of content to celebrate 75 years of the NCAA’s March Madness beginning this month and running through the 2013 NCAA tournament. CBS Sports, CBS Sports Network and, in conjunction with the NCAA, will run a series of themed specials dedicated to the “players, coaches and commentators who have made an impact over 75 memorable years of March Madness.” The salute tips off Saturday, Dec. 29 with two shows on CBS Sports, starting with 75 years: Behind the Mic at 2p, followed by the Jim Nantz-hosted 75 Years: A Coach’s Perspective at 3p. Other specials will later look at the top ten coaches, buzzer beaters and upsets from the diamond anniversary of the tournament. Around the dial, CBS Sports Network will offer The Ultimate 75-Year Bracket on Saturday, March 2, as well as later specials looking at the greatest moments and the All-Time team from march Madness.

On the Air

With final numbers in, Saturday Night’s UFC on FOX 5 almost doubled the channel’s previous outing with the MMA promotion and scored its highest-rated, most-watched UFC event since January. The event posted a 2.5/4 household rating/share, with an average audience of 4.4 million viewers in primetime for a quadruple fight card, up 83% over UFC on FOX 4 last August.

After jumping from MTV2, Bellator MMA is set to mark its premiere on Spike TV on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 10p with a card that includes two Bellator World Championship Title fights. The MMA promotion will feature five tournaments this season in different weight classes including featherweight, lightweight, welterweight, middleweight and light heavyweight. The sport’s 12-week season will now run on Thursdays, following TNA Impact, on the network.

NHL labor negotiations are slated to resume once again today, this time with mediators rejoining the talks. On Monday, the league cancelled all remaining games set for 2012. Today marks the 88th day of the lockout.

ESPN’s MNF game, featuring a Patriots blowout of the Texans, delivered a 9.0 household rating with an average of 14,483,000 million viewers tuning in to the game, according to Nielsen. In Houston, the game delivered a 12.9 rating on ESPN and a 21.7 rating on KHOU-CBS, for a combined 34.6 rating in the market. In Boston, the game delivered a 13.5 rating on ESPN and a 25.6 rating on WCVB-ABC, for a combined 39.1 rating in the market.

ESPN’s coverage of the Heisman Trophy on Saturday ranked as the network’s highest-rated ever and second most viewed with a 3.5 coverage rating and 4.9 million viewers, according to the network.

Boxing is set to return to CBS for the first time in 15 years when the network teams with Showtime Sports to offer a day/night marathon of the sport that will feature up to seven fights this Saturday. The live 90-minute CBS broadcast will air 4:30p with two fights on deck, including unbeaten IBF Bantamweight World Champion Leo Santa Cruz vs. Alberto Guevara. That evening, Showtime will step in at 10:30p with Amir Khan/Carlos Molina.

ESPN is eliminating the famed Bracketbusters matchups, which pitted teams from non-power conferences in a late season move to boost RPI and draw a national audience. The two-day event will be held for the final time in February with 13 games set to run on ESPN-affiliated networks.

Time Warner Cable SportsNet is celebrating the LA Galaxy’s second-consecutive MLS Cup with behind-the-scenes programming that takes fans inside the team’s playoff run. Three new episodes of Backstage: Galaxy will premiere tonight from 8-10p pacific, and a Backstage: Galaxy  Run to MLS Cup 2012 special will air on Dec. 31 at 6p local time.

ESPN will offer the next installment of its SEC Storied series on Thursday, Dec. 20 at 9p on ESPNU. The film will follow the career of former basketball player Sam Bowie and his injury-plagued career.


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Sponsorship & Promotion

The Bud Light Hotel is back. The brand announced that it will once again transform a hotel into “the ultimate fan experience” ahead of the Super Bowl, from Thursday, Jan 31 through Sunday, Feb. 3. This year, Bud Light will utilize a 200-room New Orleans hotel into a hot spot with parties and events throughout the week with even the hand towels and shampoos being Bud Light branded. In addition, the company announced that the EA Sports Madden Bowl will return to the scene as one of the featured events.

Congrats to Brooklyn Nets guard Deron Williams, who is the recipient of the Kia Community Assist Award for November honoring his efforts in the community and his ongoing philanthropic and charitable work. Kia and the NBA are honoring Williams in part for his charitable efforts through his Point of Hope Foundation (POH), which supports programs that provide resources, research grants and a number of in-house initiatives that help children and families in need.



Cynopsis: Sports Media Awards
Entry Deadline: February 1
Late Submission Deadline: February 8
Awards Event: April 2013 (NYC)

Click here to learn about the Awards program & enter online!

Digital Fields

The Fan Cave is going international. MLB announced a call for fans from the World Baseball Classic’s 16 countries to are up for life in the Fan Cave during the tournament next spring. Participants will leave the famed spot once their teams are eliminated and fans of the final four countries standing will be flown to San Francisco to watch the finals live.

The San Francisco 49ers inked a deal with Sony that makes the company the official consumer electronics partner for both the club and the new Santa Clara Stadium. The partnership will also look to maximize the entertainment value for fans with Sony technology being used to “create personal, engaging, compelling and interactive experiences for the 49ers Faithful fans, both online and in the stadium.” Experiences will include utilizing Sony technologies such as the 4K Ultra HD cameras and displays, providing visuals with four times the resolution of Full HD.

The Main Event

Mavericks/Celtics on ESPN at 8p.

ON THIS DAY in 1951: Joe DiMaggio announces his retirement from baseball.

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: The Chicago Bulls hold the record for most wins in a season with how many victories? Answer: 72 in the regular season with 87 total wins. Kudos: Scott L. Pinker-Sony Pictures Television/NY; Hector Calix-MEC/NY; Matt Denerstein-Mindshare/NY; Aymon DeMauro-Discovery/NY; G. David Brown-FOX Sports Carolinas/Charlotte; Rich; James Taguchi-WTVR/Richmond; Glenn Schineller-Time Warner Cable/Charlotte; David Perlmutter-MediaOcean/Chicago; Jeff Nuich-Comcast SportsNet/Chicago; Paul Tarrants-Nashville Predators/Nashville; Robert Teinowitz-Live Action Media/Chicago; Greg Moloznik-GLM Media/Scottsdale; Aly Stogol-KOLD/KMSB/KTTU/Tucson; Michael Madnick-Saban Brands/LA; Brian Robin-Brener Zwikel & Associates. Inc./Reseda; Ty Jones-WhoSay Inc/LA; Neal Stevens-Stevens & Associates/Beverly Hills.

In The Know: Trivia buffs know that Sam Bowie was drafted before Michael Jordan. But who was drafted before Sam? (Email 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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