10/10/18: FIFA unveiled plans to boost women’s soccer around the world

Good morning. It’s Wednesday October 10, 2018 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

FIFA launched its first-ever global strategy for women’s soccer, plotting a map for the org to work with confederations and Member Associations, clubs and players, the media, fans and other stakeholders in a move “to realize the full potential that exists within the women’s game.” As part of its commitment to supporting and furthering the women’s game, FIFA established its first-ever Women’s Football Division in 2016 under Chief Women’s Football Officer Sarai Bareman. This Division will work closely with MAs around the world via workshops and special initiatives to assist them in bringing together key stakeholders to discuss, develop and implement their respective women’s football strategies and to ensure the greatest impact possible of their efforts to develop and grow the women’s game.
“As FIFA’s first female Secretary General I am proud to launch our first-ever global strategy for women’s football,” said Secretary General Fatma Samoura said. “The women’s game is a top priority for FIFA and via our new strategy we will work hand-in-hand with our 211 member associations around the world to increase grassroots participation, enhance the commercial value of the women’s game and strengthen the structures surrounding women’s football to ensure that everything we do is sustainable and has strong results. Most importantly it will make football more accessible to girls and women and encourage female empowerment, a subject of great importance, now more than ever before.”

With Drew Brees making history on Monday Night Football as he became the NFL’s all-time passing yards leader, ESPN saw the Saints win deliver a 7.3 overnight rating according to Nielsen metered market numbers. That is up 4% over last year’s Vikings/Bears game. In Washington D.C., the game delivered an 8.9 rating on ESPN and an 11.7 rating on WJLA-ABC, for a combined 20.6 rating in the market. In New Orleans, the game delivered a 16.5 rating on ESPN and a 37.0 rating on WDSU-NBC, for a combined 53.5 rating in the market.
Meanwhile, CBS is reporting that – through five weeks – the NFL on CBS has seen its season-to-date household rating/share and viewership jump 7% over a year ago. CBS Sports’ Week 5 NFL singleheader coverage on Sunday scored with a 3% rise in ratings, earning an average national household rating/share of8.0/19.
Elsewhere in ratings, UEFA’s new Spanish-language broadcast partner, Univision Deportes saw viewership grown for Champions League matches by 84% from 2017 through the first two weeks of the Group Stage. Matches across Univision’s networks have averaged 217,000 Total Viewers 2+. Combined with new English-language rightsholder Turner, Champions League viewership in the U.S. is up 70% from 2017 thus far, with an average of 213,000 Total Viewers 2+.
FOX Sports’ presentation of the 2018 Red River Showdown, which saw Texas top Oklahoma, delivered 5,608,000 viewers on the FOX broadcast network. That is good enough to rank as FOX Sports’ most-watched college football game this season and was the most-watched sporting event on any network that day. It also stands as the most-watched Red River Showdown since 2011 and is up 55% in viewership over the 2017 event. All three college football games on the FOX broadcast network Saturday saw year-over-year growth.
FS1 saw the UFC 229: Khabib vs. McGregor Prelims on FS1 scored 1,308,000 viewers on Saturday. On FOX Sports Streaming Sources the telecast had an average minute audience of 26,819. That marked the best FS1 UFC PPV Prelims viewership since UFC 207, on Friday, Dec. 30, 2016. Meanwhile, the UFC 229 Postfight Show started on FS2 and scored 151,000 viewers, then moved over to FS1 and had 364,000 viewers, making it the best ever on FS2 and the sixth best UFC PPV Postfight Show on FS1.
A St. Louis-based ownership group formally announced its mission to bring a Major League Soccer club to the city. The new ownership group – using the slogan #MLS4THELOU – is composed of multi-generational members of the Taylor and Kavanaugh and led by Carolyn Kindle Betz, Senior Vice President of Enterprise Holdings and Executive Director of the Enterprise Holdings Foundation, and six other female members of the Taylor family. Currently owned by the state, the preferred stadium site is adjacent to Union Station in the western part of downtown St. Louis.
The NFL announced today a scheduling change for Week 7 on Oct. 21. The Cincinnati Bengals/Kansas City Chiefs game will move from 1p to 8:20p on NBC. Meanwhile, the Rams/49ers will subsequently shift to 4:25p on CBS.
Pac-12 Networks unveiled their 2018-19 winter broadcast schedule, anchored by more Pac-12 women’s gymnastics coverage than any network with live broadcasts of over 20 meets, including the 2019 Pac-12 Women’s Gymnastics Championships. Rounding out Pac-12 Networks’ winter broadcast schedule will include live coverage of 15 men’s volleyball matches, nine wrestling matches, two Arizona State hockey games, both days of the PAC Rugby 7s tournament and meets for women’s swimming, men’s gymnastics and acrobatics & tumbling.  The Conference’s networks will also again provide live coverage of championship events for women’s swimming & diving, men’s swimming & diving and wrestling.
CSI Sports’ FIGHT SPORTS extended their Asia Pacific distribution into Hong Kong with a carriage agreement with PCCW Media. The programming line-up includes LIVE premium world title boxing events (WBC, WBA, IBF and WBO), championship kickboxing, K-1, MMA, martial arts and exclusive reality, documentary and original programming series.
Longtime Chargers owner Alex Spanos passed away on Tuesday morning at the age of 95. “Alex Spanos is an American success story, driven by a tireless work ethic inspired by his humble beginnings as the son of Greek immigrants,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “Alex became one of the country’s most successful businessmen, but he never forgot his roots and the call to help others. Along with Faye, his beloved wife of nearly 70 years, Alex’s philanthropic and civic contributions touched many lives throughout California and around the country. He was a marvelous friend and partner, whose impact on the NFL will never be forgotten. We all benefited from Alex’s compassion, character and zest for football and life. On behalf of the entire NFL family, we extend our deepest condolences to Dean, the entire Spanos family and the Chargers organization.”
NOV. 7, 9AM – 1:45PM | Yale Club, NYC
The Digital Vs. Linear War Is Over: Convergence Is Here
Measurement is now a team sport, no longer siloed into linear TV & digital content. That’s why our first session, lead by execs at Turner & Meredith, will unpack the fundamentals of cross-platform measurement today, focusing on the major trends sweeping the media industry in solving for unduplicated reach.
[ Sponsored by TV Time ]


The Celebration Bowl announced that the Air Force Reserve has renewed its title sponsorship of the game. Operated by ESPN Events, the fourth annual Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl is a championship-style game between the division champions of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) and the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).  The game will once again be televised on ABC at noon on Dec. 15 from Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Express, Inc. inked a multiyear expanded partnership with the NBA and formally launched its second “NBA Game Changers” campaign and Performance Collection featuring NBA All-Star Victor Oladipo, Mo Bamba, Trae Young, John Collins and Jamal Murray. As part of its expanded partnership with the NBA, Express will also introduce a collection of licensed apparel, available in-store and online beginning this fall.
Diamond Resorts partnered with Insurance Office of America to name the full-service insurance agency the “Official Sponsor of the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions” and “Official Insurance Broker of the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions.” The event will serve as the LPGA Tour’s season opener with competition running Jan. 17-20, 2019 at Tranquilo Golf Club at Four Seasons Resort Orlando.
Tough Mudder announced a global partnership naming activewear brand Alanic as their Official Apparel Partner. The multi-year partnership will launch at the 2018 World’s Toughest Mudder on Nov. 10 in Atlanta. As part of the partnership, Alanic will outfit all finishers, TM Staff and volunteers across Tough Mudder’s portfolio of events in 2019 and 2020.

MSG Networks and Complex Networks locked in an expanded content partnership that will bring up to 80 new episodes from a slate of Complex’s digital shows to television. The episodes will air as part of the network’s “MSG Shorts” programming, following select Knicks, Rangers, Islanders and Devils games this year. MSG Networks will air new episodes from seven of Complex’s original series, including two of its flagship shows, Sneaker Shopping and Hot Ones. The programming lineup will also include episodes of Sean in the Wild, Complex Closets, Food Grails, The Culture and Jobs Unlisted.
The International Tennis Hall of Fame’s first ever fan vote saw Chinese tennis great and two-time Grand Slam tournament champion Li Na finish in first place, garnering the highest number of fan votes from among the eight candidates. Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic of Croatia finished in second place; and Mary Pierce of France, who won singles titles at the Australian Open and Roland-Garros, finished in third place.

ESP Gaming unveiled its premier plans for the first-ever World Showdown of Esports. The multi-genre esports tournament series will open on Oct. 14-15 with top competitors of Dota 2. The action can be seen live on twitch.tv/WSOE coming out of the PokerGO Studio in Las Vegas. Competing teams, featuring veteran players and rising stars – including compLexity Gaming, Alliance, Team Serenity, J.Storm, The Final Tribe, Happy Guys, ROOONS, and Pain X – will play for $100,000 in cash prizes. WSOE also revealed that ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) will be the official hardware sponsor of the tournament series.
TwitchCon 2018 confirmed its lineup of sponsors and esports events ahead of this year’s gathering, which begins on Oct. 26 in San Jose, CA. Overall, more than 140 exhibitors will take part in this year’s festivities, with premier sponsors and activations that include: Kakao Games; Legion, by Lenovo; Level up TwitchCon with Twitch Prime; and the Intel Streamer Zone. On the competitive gaming front, play will include the Broadcaster Royale: Omen Challenge, the Doritos Bowl, the Fortnite Fall Skirmish – Grand Final and Games Done Quick.
ELEAGUE saw last Friday’s episode of the CS:GO Premier score a new record as the most-viewed esports program in the history of cable TV. The episode generated an average of nearly 700,000 viewers.

Stanley Cup rematch with the Golden Knights/Capitals on NBCSN at 8p.
The Latest Strategies for Maximizing & Monetizing Mobile Engagement
Tuesday, October 20th | 1:30-3:00PM ET
It’s crucial to keep pace in a whiplash-inducing landscape in which fast load speed and easy interface are just the beginning. On October 30th, our speakers from Oath, Group Nine Media and Vox Media will explore the solutions now available to content creators, buyers, and sellers to make the most of mobile.
View Panel                                         Learn More                                         Register your team

ON THIS DAY in 1964: The Summer Olympics open in Tokyo.
In the Know: Who led the NHL in goals last season? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Which two teams did Dean Smith-coached North Carolina teams beat to win the national championship?  Answer: Georgetown and Michigan. Kudos: Ben Sturner-Leverage Agency/NY; Phyllis Starsia- PowerPhyl Media Solutions/NY; Eric Wright-D S Simon Media, Inc./NY; Frank Costa-CBS Sports/NY; Willy Gibson-WTG Sports Network/Columbus; Sydney Holman-Fox Sports South/Atlanta; Mike May-PHIT America/Wellington; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Kevin Micklo-Pinnacle Advertising/Chicago; Dory Petsrillo-CoxReps/Dallas; Ben Grafchik-Sneaky Big Studios/Scottsdale; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank
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