04/01/14: NCAA March Madness Live served up a record number of video streams.



A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE FROM BIG TEN NETWORK


BTN is the premier national college sports network born from the nation’s most storied conference. With nearly half of its 180 football and men’s basketball games featuring a top 25 team & deeper coverage than anyone else, BTN delivers 450+ live events & Emmy-nominated programming yearly. The Big Ten’s eastward expansion means BTN will have over 60 million subs nationwide. And it’s all supercharged by BTN’s digital, mobile & social media extensions, including BTN2Go, the network’s TV-Everywhere app. This is today’s Big Ten Network.


CYNOPSISSPORTS
04.01.14

Good morning. It’s Tuesday, April 1, 2014, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

NCAA March Madness Live, managed by Turner Sports, continues to thrive with more than 64 million live video streams spanning all platforms through the second week of the 2014 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. That is up 40% over the same period a year ago and has already bested last year’s grand total of 49 million video streams for the entire tournament. NCAA March Madness Live also saw 13.5 million hours of live video consumed, an uptick of 7% over last year and on pace to rank as an all-time record. Mobile platforms served as a primary driver of the increases, with growth with live streams up 71% over the first two weeks of the tournament in 2013.

ON THE AIR

While we are on the subject, the 2014 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship continues to trend up, with CBS Sports and Turner Sports’ coverage averaging 9.8 million total viewers, based on Nielsen Fast Nationals through Sunday’s games. The event is also averaging a 6.2 household score to tie with last year as the highest rating for the tournament since 2005.

ESPN baseball analyst Jessica Mendoza is expanding her role at the network where she will now have a position on Baseball Tonight. Mendoza will usually appear on Monday editions of Baseball Tonight, alongside Sunday Night Baseball’s John Kruk. In addition to her Baseball Tonight responsibilities, Mendoza will also contribute to select ESPN MLB game telecasts.
 
Tennis Channel filed its reply with the FCC in the latest maneuvering to shore up its Comcast complaint, stating that "Although Comcast concedes that this case is necessarily before the Commission because there is no final ruling on Tennis Channel’s complaint, Comcast argues that the Commission can take only ‘ministerial’ action in the wake of the D.C. Circuit’s decision. This argument gets administrative law precisely backwards. Where, as here, an appellate court enunciates new evidentiary tests in the course of vacating an agency’s decision, only the agency can  and, indeed, must  make the factual findings necessary to apply the new tests to the case at hand."

ESPN carries five marquee high school basketball events as well as a College Basketball Signing Day Special through Friday, April 18 to wrap up the 2013-14 high school basketball season. Games include the McDonald’s All American Game at the United Center in Chicago, Ill., Nike Hoop Summit at Moda Center in Portland, Ore., and Jordan Brand Classic at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. as well as the DICK’S Sporting Goods High School National Tournament in NYC.

The New York Emmy Awards saw MSG’s Mike Breen named best sports play-by-play man while YES’ Jim Spanarkel nabbed best analyst on Sunday night. Overall, MSG won 14 Emmys and YES took 13, which tied for the most ever for the channel. Other winners included Kevin Maher of News 12 Long Island as best sports anchor and YES’ wins for Best Sports Event: Series for its Brooklyn Nets coverage and Best Sports Program/Special for its telecast of Mariano Rivera’s final New York Yankees game, while MSG’s Lost and Found: ’73 Knicks Championship Tape scored as best sports documentary.

WestwoodOne and NBC Sports Radio are buying into Donovan McNabb, extending their partnership with the former QB, who will continue to co-host Under Center with McNabb & Malone for the network.

Jack Link’s Major League Fishing will get a taste of national exposure, with CBS Sports set to carry two specials in 2014. The company will carry the Championship Round of the Shell Rotella Challenge Cup on Sunday, May 11 at 3p as well as the Championship Round of the General Tire Summit Cup on Aug. 9 at 1p. Regular episodes of the Outdoor Channel series are set to run on the network on Thursdays at 8p this season.


 A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


J O I N  U S…
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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

New Balance hit Opening Day yesterday with a slew of new athletes under its umbrella, inking MLB’s Evan Longoria, Ryan Howard, Matt Moore, Mike Napoli, and Jean Segura to its roster and re-signing C.J. Wilson, Yadier Molina, Curtis Granderson, and J.J. Hardy to multi-year endorsement contracts. Overall in 2014, more than 500 professional baseball players, including Minor League athletes, will wear New Balance footwear on-field.

Speaking of Opening Day, some new commercials made their debut including Budweiser, which debuted a new spot dubbed Always There. The commercial showcases how the brand has been there for some of MLB’s most iconic moments, showing footage and audio of such historic moments as Babe Ruth being bought by the Yankees, Lou Gehrig’s farewell speech, Willie Mays’ famed Catch, Cal Ripken setting the Iron Man record, and more.

Meanwhile, ESPN unveiled its own new promo, with the debut of the latest This is SportsCenter spot starring Pittsburgh Pirates’ center fielder Andrew McCutchen. The ad, dubbed Pirates, features SportsCenter anchors John Anderson, Jade McCarthy, Kevin Negandhi and Hannah Storm conducting a meeting when a group of Pirate-themes mascots, such as East Carolina’s Pee Dee, Seton Hall’s Pirate and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Captain Fear and led by McCutchen loot all the food from the room.
 
The Topps Company, Inc. and Major League Soccer launched the 2014 Topps MLS Soccer card set yesterday, designed to showcase a combo of current MLS stars, American soccer legends and Mexican National Team players. Aspects of the set include the trading card backs, which will feature analytical statistics never before seen in the industry in partnership with Bloomberg Sports.

Learfield Sports has reached a five-year sponsorship agreement with environmental engineering firm TEEMCO for Oklahoma’s three largest universities, the University of Oklahoma, University of Tulsa, and Oklahoma State University. The deal begins with the start in the 2014-2015 season and includes signage at football and basketball games. Additionally, TEEMCO has committed to developing a scholarship program and internship opportunities for engineering and energy majors.

DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY

The new WWE Network unveiled its programming lineup for WrestleMania Week, programming events that include the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, an expanded two-hour WrestleMania pre-show as well as WrestleMania 30. The Hall of Fame coverage is slated for Saturday at 9p, with a red carpet arrival show set for 8p. Other programming will include today’s WrestleMania Press Conference at 11a and Legends of WrestleMania on Friday at 10p, a round table discussion with WrestleMania Legends as they look back at their greatest WrestleMania moments. 

The Whistle Network and its channel partners have now surpassed 400 million total views as the first sports-focused multi-channel network on YouTube. Since its New Year’s Eve launch, the platform now boasts 3.46 million YouTube subscribers, 48 channel partners and a library of over 2,900 videos.

NCAA.com, managed by Turner Sports, is offering an interactive guide to the NCAA Men’s Final Four in North Texas and the NCAA Women’s Final Four in Nashville with the launch of the new NCAA Final Four North Texas app presented by AT&T and Women’s Final Four Nashville. The platform offers schedule information, interactive maps, news, concert lineups, ticket information, social features and more. In addition, NCAA.com will offer micro-sites for fans attending the Final Four events with news and information including fan events, venue information, concert lineups and local festivities, as well as local city highlights, information and AT&T free Wi-Fi locations throughout the North Texas area.

The World Cup is coming in June and it will be the most digitally connected one of all time, which means that it’s likely become the largest online sporting event in history. Four years ago, more than 26 million hours of online World Cup video content was consumed. A survey from YuMe, as reported by RealSEO, shows how the growth in mobile devices since then will impact the World Cup.
* 63% of the 879 individuals surveyed intend to watch highlights via a PC, 23% on smartphone, and 25% on a tablet device.
* Live streaming of matches will be popular across all devices: PC 33%, tablet 22%, smartphone 11%, smart TV 13%.
* 74% intend to watch World Cup matches from either a bar, friend’s home, or at work.
* Over 54% of respondents intend to watch online video of completed matches.
* Around 50% of viewers intend to watch online video of previous World Cup matches

THE MAIN EVENT

NHL action offers Flyers/Blues on NBCSN at 8p.


 A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


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ON THIS DAY in 1985: Villanova shocks Georgetown to win the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship.

In The Know: Who was the last NBA player to be drafted straight out of high school with the first overall pick? (Email [email protected] 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.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: What MLB legend remains the all-time RBI leader? Answer: Hank Aaron. Kudos: Aymon DeMauro-Discovery/NY; Jason Kern-NBCUniversal/NY; David Stern-BARD Entertainment/NY; Tom Wetzel-MMSI/Warwick; Gordon Beck-Beck Communications, LLC/Northeast Harbor; Tony Ferranti-MMSI/Warwick; Jerehmy White-BusyBuddy Books/Glen Rock; Ron Salcedo-Zimmerman/Nashville; Joe Lyons-Back Nine Productions, Inc./Dallas; Matt Sautter-OpenTV/Golden; Judie Henninger-Valentine Productions Inc./Santa Monica; Doug Kelly-S.F. Bowl Game Association/South San Francisco; Paul Gygli-NBCUniversal Television Distribution/Universal City; Miguel Velasco-FOX Sports/LA.


 A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


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Email:  Trish Pihonak.


Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for
Cynopsis | Sports @VegasandVine
04.01.14

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