05/25/18: FloSports adds Rugby Channel to its arsenal

Good morning. It’s Friday May 25, 2018 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

FloSports inked a deal to bring The Rugby Channel under its umbrella from Rugby International Marketing. The deal immediately awards FloSports the rights to all matches previously under The Rugby Channel and brings 51 new competitions annually to FloRugby.com. FloSports also announced that World Rugby Hall of Famer Phaidra Knight will join FloRugby as a regular contributor, providing live commentary, columns, training and technique videos, and other content to the site. In addition, FloRugby will provide extended exclusive access to USA Rugby, giving fans all new ways to keep up with their favorite players and teams.
“Rugby is one of the fastest-growing sports in America, and this deal allows us to elevate the coverage of the sport to new heights,” FloSports co-founder and COO Mark Floreani said. “We want to provide fans a platform to connect with and follow their favorite athletes and teams, and to discover more live rugby than they’ve ever had access to. This is an exciting day for rugby fans.”

The NHL’s Eastern Conference Final Game 7, which saw the Capitals advance to the Stanley Cup Final, helped push NBC Sports’ coverage of the playoffs to now average a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 1.206 million viewers, which stands as the most-watched playoffs in 21 years and up 7% over 2017. NBC Sports’ coverage of the NHL’s Eastern and Western Conference Finals averaged a combined TAD of 1.977 million viewers, making it the most-watched Conference Final round in three years and up 9% vs. last year with ECF Game 7 on NBCSN sporting a TAD of 2.691 million viewers. Meanwhile, NBC Sports scored some high-profile storylines for the 2018 Stanley Cup Final, which will feature the expansion Vegas Golden Knights facing Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals. Game 1 begins Monday at 8p on NBC from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas with pre-game coverage at 6p on NBCSN with a two-hour edition of NHL Live.
Meanwhile, NHL Network detailed its 2018 Stanley Cup Final coverage plans, lining up more than 70 hours of live programming from Las Vegas and Washington, DC starting Sunday. Each day will see the network offer in-depth previews, interviews, highlights and analysis across its programming each day. In addition to its existing distribution, a free preview of NHL Network will be offered to DISH customers nationwide, to Cox customers in Las Vegas and Virginia, to Comcast customers in Washington, DC and Baltimore, and to RCN customers in Washington, DC. Saturday sees the channel air one-hour episodes of NHL Tonight: How They Got There, recapping Washington’s path through the Eastern Conference at noon and Vegas’ inaugural campaign in the Western Conference at 1p. 
ESPN’s coverage of NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 5, which saw the Celtics emerge triumphant over the Cavaliers to take a 3-2 series lead – delivered a 5.7 metered market rating, up 30% over Game 5 of the same matchup last year. The series now ranks as ESPN’s highest-rated Conference Finals in six years, since Boston vs. Miami in 2012, averaging a 5.8 metered market rating through five games.
NBC Sports’ serves up the 2018 French Open this weekend, beginning this Sunday at noon on NBC with the first round from Roland-Garros in Paris. Coverage culminates with the women’s final on June 9, at 9a and the men’s final on June 10 at 9a on the broadcast channel. Ted Robinson handles play-by-play for NBC’s coverage, joined by analysts John McEnroe and Mary Carillo.
ESPN networks and ESPN+ will combine to present all 2018 Canadian Football League regular season and postseason games. ESPN2 and ESPNEWS will televise more than 20 games, including the Eastern and Western Finals and 106th Grey Cup, while nearly 70 games will be streamed exclusively on ESPN+. ESPN2 kicks off the CFL regular season on June 14, and will televise all four week 1 games in prime time.
Elsewhere at the network, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and the ESPN App will serve up more than 24 live hours of the 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee from May 29-31. ESPN’s Matt Barrie will host alongside 1990 finalist, Paul Loeffler. Meanwhile, the multiple choice Play Along channel returns for its fifth year, offering fans a shot to pick the correct spelling of the given word.
The matchups for the 2019 SEC/Big 12 Challenge are set, running Jan. 26 and headlined by Kansas/Kentucky, and West Virginia/Tennessee. The annual event, in its sixth year, matches all 10 of the Big 12 members against 10 of the 14 programs from the Southeastern Conference. Each conference will host five games with the network assignments and tip times to be announced at a later date. Four of the 10 games will be televised on ESPN, four on ESPN2 and two games will air on ESPNU.
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IMG College Licensing announced a multi-year extension of its partnership with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the commencement of a new partnership with NC State University to manage each school’s trademark licensing program. The new NC State agreement has an initial term of four years, while the new UNC-Chapel Hill agreement extends the partnership until 2025. “IMG College Licensing’s strategic brand management, trademark enforcement and innovative data analysis will serve NC State well in accelerating our licensing program to higher levels,” said Gregg Zarnstorff, Director of Trademark Licensing for NC State. “Utilizing their expertise and systems will allow us to align product, licensees, and retailers in providing quality NC State Wolfpack merchandise to our alumni, fans, and supporters.”  
Nearly 200 Major and Minor League Baseball clubs will take part in Play Ball Weekend for a third consecutive year. The complementary program of initiative was created to provide professional baseball Clubs with a platform to engage youth and celebrate baseball & softball participation in communities throughout the country and in Canada. In support of the weekend, MLB Clubs will host customized and unique activities to engage young people with special ballpark giveaways, including bat & ball sets, sunglasses, eye black, pitch grip baseballs, wristbands, drawstring bags, caps & more.
Bud Light is serving up two more editions of its Dilly, Dilly campaign with two new spots in time for Memorial Day Weekend. The first, titled Redemption, sees Sir Doug return to the realm as he presents the King and Queen with Bud Light Lime and the new Bud Light Orange. The second features Oracle Susana in World Cup is Coming
PHIT America is launching its first National Fundraising & Awareness Campaign. The org developed a turn-key program for sponsors, supporters, ambassadors, and partners to deliver its message of educating Americans on the ‘Inactivity Pandemic.’

ESPN+ reached an agreement with National Pro Fastpitch to carry regular season games throughout the summer as well as the league’s Cowles Cup Championship Series. The slate begins May 31 and will continue into August, featuring multiple appearances from every team in the league. ESPN+’s exclusive 13 game regular season slate is highlighted by at least four appearances by each of the five teams in the league
YouTube teamed up with The F2Freestylers for “F2 Finding Football,” a new original series produced by Whistle Sports that premieres on the F2Freestyler’s YouTube Channel on June 13. The show follows soccer skill pioneers Billy Wingrove and Jeremy Lynch, who have earned over 1.3 billion lifetime views on YouTube. The first episode debuts on June 13.

FIFA and Electronic Arts announced that London will serve as host for the FIFA eWorld Cup Grand Final 2018, from August 2-4. The event will see 32 finalists who will have qualified for the event through the EA SPORTS FIFA 18 Global Series Playoffs now competing for the ultimate Grand Prize: the FIFA eWorld Cup title.
Aston Villa FC announced the launch of a gaming/esports division, which will beging by participating in FIFA 18 tournament. AVFC will host seven, weekly qualifier tournaments on both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, each awarding pro points to top competitors.

Lagardere Sports hired 25-year sports and entertainment industry veteran Bob Brennfleck as Senior Vice President, Commercial. Brennfleck will be focused on driving business development and revenue growth across all Lagardere Sports’ core business units and assets and previously served as the president and CEO of Ascendent.
The BIG EAST Conference concluded its Annual Summer Meeting with news that Val Ackerman would serve as chair of the NBA-issues Working Group, one of the working groups formed to implement the recommendations of the Commission on College Basketball. In addition, Georgetown President John J. DeGioia will be Chair of Student-Athlete Support/Degree Completion Working Group; and Xavier Athletics Director Greg Christopher is Chair of Enforcement/Infractions Working Group. In addition, the event saw a group from FOX Sports, led by Executive Vice President Larry Jones, discuss the unique presentation of BIG EAST basketball on various FOX outlets, including continuing plans for enhanced access game production.

Celtics/Cavaliers tonight on ESPN at 8:30p.

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ON THIS DAY in 1939: Carl Storck becomes the second NFL president.
In the Know: Which Bruce Springsteen song recounted a meeting with “a big baseball player” who “could throw that speedball by you”? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Who is the Cincinnati Bengals’ all-time receiving leader in yards? Answer: Chad Johnson. Kudos: Michael Ritz-BucStar Consulting/NY; Traci Liner-Endeavor/NY; Bob Dudelson-Leverage Agency/NY; Kyle Helm-CBS Sports Network/NY; Ken White-Kwtv/Charlotte; Joe Schreiber-3 Penny Films/Bethesda; Troy Perlowitz-ESPN/Bristol; Rick Rosenfelt-New York Red Bulls/Harrison; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Lance Phegley-Texas Runner and Triathlete magazine/Houston; Jaclyn Fischer-Cuneo Advertising/Minneapolis; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank

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Diane K Schwartz
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JOB OPENING: HUMAN RESOURCE ASSOC/John Gore Org/NYC: Well-organized person to aid HR team in day to day ops. Asst mgrs w/recruiting exp incl maintaining internal/external job boards, placing candidates, background checks. Previous exp working in a role that req’s high level of confidentiality. Full info/apply HERE (6/1)

JOB OPENING: MGR DIGITAL COMMUNICATIONS/Telemundo/Miami: Position/promote all NBCU Telemundo Enterprises social media profiles to boost the corp brand, its human element & its creative content. 3-4 yrs exp Dig Mktg w/a focus on content dvlpmnt. Knwlg of latest in digital &social media tech & channels. Full info/apply HERE (6/1)

JOB OPENING: SOCIAL MEDIA DIR, UNSCRIPTED PROGRAMMING/Crown Media Family Networks/LA: Dvlp/execute strategic SM & dig. initiatives for Home & Family. Provide creative dir for content creation, drive tune-in & ratings, enhance social awareness/engagement. Min 5 yrs SM exp & BS req’d. Full info/apply HERE (6/1)

JOB OPENING: ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE/Machinima/California: Resp for driving sales efforts & reaching ad sales targets for Machinima, the premiere digital video programmer of gamer and fandom-focused content. 3+ yrs exp digital media sales w/in a Ent/media or ad agency. Full info/apply HERE (6/1)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR, MARKETING & PARTNER INSIGHTS/Viacom/Chicago: 8+ yrs in ad sales related media rsrch. Dynamic individual with strong client facing experience to develop strategy & thought leadership pieces, moving ad sales initiatives forward.  Retail & CPG exp a plus. Full info/apply HERE (6/1)

JOB OPENING: PROJECT MGR/Showtime/NYC: Mng dig.initiatives & workflow for Digital Media – in particular, supporting social and display media efforts including mngng all aspects of creative execution process, facilitation of design team’s work, leading creative reviews & delivery to sites for media placement. Apply HERE (5/31)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR, PEOPLE ACQUISITION/A+E/NY: Mng the function to identify, assess & hire the best & brightest. Partner w/Talent Acquisition VP to create an engaging & cohesive employee life cycle. 5+ yrs recruitment exp within media. Strong HR ntwrk of recruiters, talent acq specialists, HR Professionals. Apply HERE (5/31)

JOB OPENING: WHITE HOUSE PRODUCER/MSNBC/DC: Join the NBC News team as a Producer. You will work with correspondents to prepare live reports and field produce. Min 3 yrs editorial exp working in prod at a network/cable news operation. Full info/apply HERE (5/31)
JOB OPENING: DIGITAL PRODUCER, THE STEVE WILKOS SHOW/NBCU/Stamford CT: Oversee daily website, app and digital initiatives and content including video, photos, promotional items, sales, marketing and public relations campaigns. Min of 2-4 yrs exp in online, digital or mktg/post prod. Full info/apply HERE (5/31)

JOB OPENING:  TV POST PRODUCTION TECHNICIAN/TV ONE/Silver Spring MD: Encoding and Duplication, using a variety of videotape formats & digitizing for non -linear editing.  BA deg in communications or video production + 1 yr work exp. Full info/apply HERE (5/31)

ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE, DIGITAL & SOCIAL SALES/beIN Sports/NYC or Miami: Resp for selling across all beIN Sports Digital platforms within an assigned territory while maintaining/growing th
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JOB OPENING: PROGRAMMING ASSOCIATE/MEB Networks/Springfield VA: Organize/participate in daily screening sessions to evaluate programs being considered for acquisition. BA Deg in TV/Film Prod or Journalism & min 2 yrs hands-on exp TV prgmng/prod.  Proficiency in MS suite. Full info/apply HERE (5/30)

JOB OPENING: MGR, AD SALES PRICING FORECASTING SPORTS/NBCU/NYC: Responsible for the Sports Group Sales forecasting, revenue analysis and financial closes for broadcast sports properties. BA deg finance /accounting. Min 4 yrs exp in financial management & analysis. Full info/apply HERE (5/30)

JOB OPENING: MGR, AD SALES FINANCE/NBCU/NYC: Help support the portfolio FP&A responsibilities including the weekly, monthly and annual reviews of revenue performance for SR Sales and Finance leadership. Min 3 yrs of corporate or operational finance exp. Full info/apply HERE (5/30)

JOB OPENING: MGR, AD SALES FINANCE FP & A/NBC Sports/NYC: Responsible for the Sports Group Sales forecasting, revenue analysis and financial closes for the Golf Channel. Min 4 yrs exp in financial managemen t and analysis. Full info/apply HERE (5/30)

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