02/09/22: The Clash at the Coliseum gave recent highs to FOX Sports

Medias First Morning Read
Wednesday February 9, 2022

NASCAR’s Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum packed a punch for FOX, which was 4,283 million viewers tune in for the race on Sunday, marking the most viewers for the event since 2016, according to Nielsen. In addition, the event was up 168% over last year’s race on FS1, with top markets led by Greensboro, Charlotte and Indianapolis, while LA scored its best non-Daytona 500 rating in nearly six years.

PROGRAMMING

Telemundo preps for Super Bowl LVI with comprehensive, multiplatform coverage from Los Angeles leading up to the exclusive, Spanish-language presentation of the game on Sunday on Telemundo and Universo. With multiple sets throughout the city and inside SoFi Stadium, Telemundo will deploy a line-up of the network’s news and entertainment shows to enhance its programming originated onsite. The network’s presence onsite kicks off with En Casa con Telemundo live from Plaza Mexico starting today at 11a and 2p on weekdays. On Sunday, a Super Bowl special Fiesta del Super Bowl LVI, En Casa Con Telemundo airs live from coast to coast at 2o with Carlos Adyan and Alix Aspe from Plaza Mexico and Jorge Bernal in Miami. In addition, the network’s morning show Hoy Dia, its award-winning daily news show Noticias and top magazine news show Al Rojo Vivo will originate from Los Angeles.

Anchored by Team USA winning silver in the team figure skating competition, alpine skiing, and freestyle skiing on Sunday, NBC Olympics delivered a third consecutive night of Total Audience Delivery viewership growth – marking the first time ever that primetime Winter Games coverage began with four successive nights of increased viewership, according to the company. Coverage averaged a TAD of 13.7 million viewers, up from 13.6 million viewers on Saturday night, 12.8 million primetime viewers on Friday night, and 8.0 million viewers on Thursday night.

ESPN takes another shot at celebrating the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Season with NBA 75: Connected, a new series that pairs current NBA stars with legends and “features in-depth conversations about how the game of basketball has evolved and redefined itself across decades.” The five-episode series debuts with back-to-back episodes on Friday, at 7p and 7:30p on ESPN. Episode 1 of NBA 75: Connected pairs point guards – Atlanta Hawks phenom Trae Young and Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas.

The NBA announced that that music mogul DJ Khaled and a lineup of to-be-announced musical artists will headline State Farm All-Star Saturday Night performances this month. Artists who will join him will be announced next week.

Speaking of the NBA, the league’s Basketball Africa League announced the top 12 club teams from 12 African countries that will compete in the 2022 BAL season, which will tip off March 5 at the Dakar Arena in Dakar, Senegal, and will include stops in Cairo, Egypt and Kigali, Rwanda.

Finally, NBA on TNT returns this week on Thursday night and includes teams and participants being locked in for NBA All-Star 2022 primetime festivities. Thursday sees the Inside the NBA team host a special hour-long 2022 NBA All-Star Draft Show presented by Nike, beginning at 6:30p as 2022 NBA All-Star Game team captains LeBron James and Kevin Durant join to select their teams from among the starters and reserves voted into the All-Star field.

ESPN re-signed anchor and legal analyst Ryan Smith to a new, multiyear deal and is moving him into an expanded role with SportsCenter. As part of his new deal, Smith’s position as an anchor for SportsCenter has been expanded from a fill-in status to a permanent co-anchor of the 7a edition of ESPN’s signature news and information program for several days each week. In addition, Smith is continuing his role as a legal analyst and is reporting feature stories and investigative pieces across multiple ESPN platforms, and for ABC News. He also continues as a fill-in host for other editions of SportsCenter as well as Get Up and Outside the Lines.

The NHL announced that country music’s Miranda Lambert and Dierks Bentley will share center stage at the 2022 Navy Federal Credit Union NHL Stadium Series, the Feb. 26 outdoor game between the Nashville Predators and Tampa Bay Lightning. Their first intermission performance will be televised as part of the NHL Stadium Series broadcast, which begins at 7:30p on TNT.

FloSports will exclusively live stream SANZAAR (South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and Argentina Rugby) matches in the United States through its FloRugby platform and award-winning FloSports app. Coverage, which runs through 2025, includes club tournaments such as Super Rugby Pacific, Bunnings NPC and Currie Cup, as well as international competitions including the Rugby Championship and Bledisloe Cup.

Production company Tupelo Honey and Las Vegas television station KVVU FOX5 announced the launch of a new syndicated television series, Beat the Odds. Gray Television owns both Tupelo Honey and KVVU Fox5 and will clear the pilot episode on February 11 across select owned and operated stations reaching approximately one quarter of US television households. In the third quarter of 2022, Tupelo Honey plans to begin production of the 30-minute weekly series, which will be available for syndication.

CBS Sports carries two college basketball games with a special analytics focus as Beyond the Box Score returns for a second year on CBS Sports Network. Richmond and George Mason men’s basketball will be featured in CBS Sports’ Beyond the Box Score presentation today, while Loyola Marymount and BYU men’s basketball will be featured for the second straight year when they face off on Feb. 24. All four teams have provided CBS Sports with access to their coaching staffs to understand how their programs value advanced stats and utilize them in various ways.

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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

Looking at a few more Super Bowl activations…
· FanDuel is introducing “Lady Luck” during Super Bowl Week with Jennifer Coolidge starring in the company’s new campaign. The new advertising campaign will be featured leading up to Super Bowl week (but will not be featured during the Super Bowl game). The company is also bringing back free Super Bowl Bingo as well as a special livestream on Pat McAfee’s YouTube Channel starting at 9p
· Michelob ULTRA unveiled a series of three star-studded Super Bowl commercials that ladder back to the brand’s belief, “It’s Only Worth It If You Enjoy It.” Michelob ULTRA’s presence during this year’s Super Bowl will be episodic with the spots taking place at the brand’s fictitious bowling alley known as the “Superior Bowl” and featuring the likes of Peyton Manning, Alex Morgan, Jimmy Butler, Nneka Ogwumike, Brooks Koepka and Serena Williams
· Prime Video launches the first teaser trailer for The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power on Sunday during the game. The teaser trailer will mark the first footage released for the year’s most hotly anticipated new series.
· Bud Light NEXT is releasing its new Super Bowl spot titled “Zero in the Way of Possibility”, which “pays tribute to those consumers 21+ who, like Bud Light, are breaking barriers and refusing to be boxed in.” The spot also marks another milestone for the brand’s recent entry into the NFT space, by featuring a Nouns DAO partnership.

Elsewhere, HelloFresh entered a partnership with the National Hockey League’s Nashville Predators, New York Islanders, and Los Angeles Kings to become the first meal kit partner of each team. The partnerships will also provide fans with the chance to win branded gear through sweepstakes and in-arena contests. “Hockey fans are some of the most passionate, loyal fans in the world who love what their team and city stand for. HelloFresh is proud to fuel the game while showcasing our various menu offerings and meal solutions within key markets,” said Jens Reich, Managing Director and CMO, HelloFresh US.

Golf’s DP World Tour entered into a new multi-year partnership with Velocity Global, that designates the company as the tour’s official global work platform. The deal also includes on-course signage, promotion during TV broadcasts, as well as a presence across the tour’s social media platforms.

DIGITAL, DATA & TECH

IEG announced Market Meter, a new rating system designed to help buyers and sellers of sports sponsorship “benchmark the value potential of sponsorships across categories and sports leagues.” IEG’s Market Meter leveraged 13 key performance indicators to rate more than 8,000 partnerships in 65+ sponsorship categories across the NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL, helping sponsorship sellers and buyers identify, filter, vet, benchmark and price opportunities.

New York’s first month of legal sports betting saw the state’s official handle top $1.62 billion, setting the single-month record for any state. New Jersey, which took three years to pass $1 billion handled in one month, held the previous record at $1.3 billion during the month of October.

Super Bowl Sims predictions battle:
· EA SPORTS released its annual Super Bowl prediction with EA SPORTS Madden NFL 22. The simulation forecasts the Cincinnati Bengals to win its first Super Bowl title defeating the Rams 24-21.
· Strat-O-Matic projects the Rams to top the Bengals 27-20, in a simulation of this Sunday’s season-ending football contest.

ESPORTS

Electronic Arts and the NFL follow up the EA SPORTS Ultimate Madden Bowl Final this week with the Ultimate Madden Bowl ESPN Special, a unique presentation of the esports final. ESPN will carry the broadcast on Friday, at 8:30p, marking the Madden NFL Championship Series debut on the channel. The program will re-air once again on February 13, at 9a with Kimmi Chex serving as the Ultimate Madden Bowl ESPN Special host.

In addition, the NFL and FaZe Clan announced a joint marketing initiative to host a series of content activations and brand collaborations “with the goal of cross-pollinating audiences and furthering the prominent cultural convergence of traditional sports and gaming communities.” Kicking things off, on Feb. 12, the NFL and FaZe Clan will host a co-branded flag football game during the Super Bowl Experience Presented by Lowe’s. “Gaming continues to be a core pillar within the broader NFL strategy, and we are excited to announce a joint marketing initiative with FaZe Clan that will kick off with a co-branded flag football game at this year’s Super Bowl Experience presented by Lowe’s. In addition, our enhanced relationship will include first-ever activations and initiatives throughout the 2022-2023 season aimed at engaging our casual Gen Z fans,” said Ian Trombetta, SVP, Social, Influencer & Content Marketing at the NFL. “Teaming up with FaZe enables us to leverage our platforms to authentically engage with and celebrate the next generation of fans at the intersection of gaming, football, and culture.”

BLAST announced plans to enter EA SPORTS football franchise, EA SPORTS FIFA 22, and will produce the 2021/22 edition of the ePremier League. All 20 clubs will be represented in the tournament. For the latest installment of the ePL, BLAST has co-created a brand-new online format and has planned an elevated live event experience for players and fans ahead of March’s ePL Grand Final. This year’s competition sees the return of a live ePremier League Grand Final, where the two best players from all 20 Premier League clubs competing on March 26 and 27.

INDUSTRY & ROSTER MOVES

CBS Sports is launching a new Race and Culture Unit, led by veteran journalist David Cummings, who will serve as Senior Director, and award-winning producer, Sarah M. Kazadi, who returns to CBS Sports as Senior Producer. The unit will “pinpoint opportunities, identify priorities, and help shape the editorial direction for all CBS Sports content at the intersection of sport, race, and culture.”

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