11/10/21: Caesars makes a bet on the Manning family; Ratings spike for FOX football

Medias First Morning Read

 

Wednesday November 10, 2021

The first family of football has joined Caesars Sportsbook in a groundbreaking multiyear partnership struck on Tuesday. Archie Manning and his three sons – Cooper and former NFL quarterbacks Peyton and Eli – will be featured in advertising, as well as make live event and commercial appearances. They’ll also participate in member experiences through the Caesars rewards programs.

In addition to lending their creativity and expertise as advisers, the Mannings will serve as prominent ambassadors for Caesars’ focus on responsible gaming. Drawing a parallel to the importance of staying in control, like they did on the football field, the Mannings will highlight the resources that Caesars Sportsbook provides bettors to stay in control of their gaming.

PROGRAMMING

America’s Game of the Week delivered the best Sunday afternoon telecast this season with 24.4 million viewers (up +7% over last year’s comparable window, 22.8 million). It was the best NFL Sunday afternoon telecast on any network this season and well the most-watched telecast of the week on any network. FOX NFL regional window delivered 15.2 million viewers (up +48% over last year’s comparable delivery, 10.3 million). The network also garnered a doubleheader average of 19.5 million viewers.

Meanwhile, FOX’s Big Noon Saturday window was the most-watched college football slot on any network through Week 10, averaging 5.2 million viewers. Season-to-date, college football on FOX is off to its best start ever, up +18% over 2019.

LSU at Alabama was ESPN’s most-watched game of the weekend, garnering 5 million viewers. It was the network’s most-viewed game since October 2019 (Florida/LSU), and the top telecast of the day across key male and female demos (18-34, 18-49, 25-54). The audience was up 18% from the same matchup in 2020 and peaked with 6 million viewers from 10-10:15p in the final minutes of the game.

Man in the Arena: Tom Brady debuts Tuesday, November 16 on ESPN+. The new series features the iconic NFL quarterback sharing his account of his Super Bowl appearances as well as other notable figures deconstructing the milestones of Brady’s career.

ESPN’s platforms will offer related programming leading up to the showdown between WBO welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford and former two-time world champion “Showtime” Shawn Porter, streaming exclusively on ESPN+ PPV on Saturday, November 20 at 9p. Kicking things off: two-part Blood, Sweat & Tears: Crawford vs. Porter on ESPN2. Part One airs Wednesday November 10 at 12:30a, while Part Two airs Sunday, November 14 at 2:30p. In addition, State of Boxing: Crawford vs. Porter Preview Special streams exclusively on ESPN+ on Thursday, November 18.

Former NBA All-Star and Olympic Gold Medalist Deron Williams takes on San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore in a professional heavyweight boxing match on the undercard of the Jake Paul vs. Tommy Fury, live on Showtime PPV on Saturday, December 18 at AMALIE Arena in Tampa. The four-round heavyweight bought will be contested with a 215-pound contractual limit as the two star athletes make their professional boxing debuts.

ESPN Events’ State Farm Champions Classic, the season-opening college basketball event featuring Duke, Kansas, Kentucky and Michigan State, has been renewed for three more years through 2025. The neutral site doubleheader that debuted in 2011 and features four of the most accomplished programs in the history of the sport will continue to rotate among New York City (2021), Indianapolis (2022) and other sites. The 2023-2025 venues will be announced at a later date.

Turner Sports announced commentators for Capitol One’s The Match, featuring a head-to-head showdown between Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka, airing live Friday, November 26 at 4p on TNT. World Golf Hall of Famer Phil Mickelson will team with broadcaster Charles Barkley to provide commentary and analysis at the golf event series taking place at the Wynn Las Vegas.

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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

Madison Square Garden Sports and Madison Square Garden Entertainment struck a multiyear marketing partnership with BetMGM. The deal names the sports betting and gaming company an official sports betting partner of the New York Knicks, New York Rangers and Madison Square Garden Arena. BetMGM will receive substantial brand integration inside the arena and be included in content across official Knicks and Rangers digital channels on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. BetMGM will also be featured prominently on MSG Networks during live game coverage of the Knicks, Rangers, New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders.

Playfly Sports secured a new 10-year agreement with Villanova University Athletics that will run through the end of the 2032 school year. The partnership with Villanova dates back to 2016 and has since included two men’s basketball national championship victories. As part of the deal, Playfly Sports will continue to manage all aspects of the corporate partnerships’ portfolio for Villanova athletes, connecting brands with Wildcat fans.

Global online betting and gaming brand Betway is now an official partner of the Philadelphia flyers. Betway branding will appear on the ice and on the boards during Flyers home games over the course of the season. “As an organization, we focus on partnering with innovative forward-thinking brands who understand not only where the sports industry is right now, but also where it’s going,” said Mike Shane, Chief Business Officer for the Flyers.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has struck a deal with sports memorabilia company The Memento Group (TMG). As per its terms, TMG becomes the global distributor of UFC’s officially licensed sports memorabilia. In January 2022, TMC and UFC will launch a new online memorabilia store and marketplace giving fans and collectors the opportunity to buy and sell UFC-licensed products. Managed by TMG, the platform will also allow users to bid on collectibles via online auctions.

With Opening Night fast approaching, World TeamTennis has announced its partnership roster of sponsors for the 2021 season. Headlining the list are Guaranteed Rate and Masimo as premier partners for the season. Citi Taste of Tennis, Wilson, Har-Tru, Hospital for Special Surgery, Avocados from Mexico, PlayYourCourt, TopCourt and ZenWTR have also partnered with WTT.

Misfits Gaming Group has partnered with Italian sports apparel company ellesse in a deal that makes ellesse the official sports and lifestyle apparel provider for MGG’s properties across Europe and North America. It’s the apparel company’s entrance into the esports market.

DIGITAL, DATA & TECH

PGA Tour and WWE have joined the Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator, powered by Boomtown, as advisors when it begins its second cohort of startups in February 2022. The experts who advise accelerator’s participants including business leaders from NBC Sports, Sky Sports, GOLF, NBC Sports Next and Comcast Spectacor, alongside NASCAR, and three U.S. Olympic sports organizations.

ESPN Digital led the sports category in September, reaching 116 million users — its second-highest month ever behind January 2020. ESPN’s lead in total minutes increased from 946 million in August to 3.7 billion in September. ESPN on YouTube reached 26.5 million unique visitors in September, the second highest mark ever, and the SportNation YouTube channel nearly tripled its unique visitors from the previous months to 15.2 million.

FuboTV has reached a milestone. The streamer, which announced record financial results for the third quarter ending September 30, 2021, now has more than 1 million paid subscribers.

beIN SPORTS has officially launched on Fanatiz in Canada, expanding beIN SPORTS’ distribution in North America.

RealResponse, the monitoring and anonymous reporting platform for athletic teams and organizations, announced its first cross-team partnership with Louisville’s Soccer Holdings LLC.

ESPORTS

AE Studios will produce the live-stream of the first-ever UNO Championship Series Invitational Tournament from HyperX Esports Arena Las Vegas on November 11. Viewers can watch live on UNO’s TikTok channel starting at 3p ET, as finalists compete for a grand prize of $50,000 and the honor of being crowned the first official UNO World Champion. The event will be hosted by UNO fanatic and professional gamer and streamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins.

Dignitas, the esports vertical of New Meta Entertainment, Inc, has been crowned champions of the BMW Rocket League Open. Having won one world championship, two European Championships, a European Regional and four Major tournament wins since its foray into the game in 2018, Dignitas is the most decorated organization in competitive Rocket League.

INDUSTRY

NBC Sports Next has formed a partnership with the U.S. Center for SafeSport. The mission of the U.S. Center for Safe Sport is making athlete well-being the centerpiece of the nation’s sports culture through abuse prevention, education and accountability.

Logitix renewed its long-term partnership with Valero Alamo Bowl, inking a three-year extension pact. The company will continue to provide technology and analytics throughout the ticketing process for the Valero Alamo Bowl, set to take place in San Antonio on December 29.

ROSTER MOVES

Esports-focused social media network Juked.gg has named Dennis “Thresh” Fong” to its advisory board.

Logitix has added to its executive team. Greg Nortman was promoted to President, and Chris Zaber was named Executive Vice President of Business Development.

Aqualung appointed Tim Vidmar as Director of Operations for North America. He was previously at Fox Racing.

Odds On Compliance hired Ashley Dabb as Director of Marketing & Business Development. Dabb also serves as a Professor of Sports Marketing at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, PA.

CLG announced the hiring of key coaching staff for the organization’s League of Legends team. Thomas “Thinkcard” Slotkin was named head coach, while Chris “Croissant” Sun will join as strategic coach.

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ON THIS DAY in
1975: The Royals released slugger Harmon Killebrew, ending his 22-year career.

IN THE KNOW
Who was the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup? (Email cpursell@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
30 years ago, yesterday, Magic Johnson announced he was HIV Positive. He returned to play in the NBA All-Star Game that Season. Who was the MVP of that All-Star Game? Answer: Magic Johnson. Kudos to: Keith Marder-Brown Harris Stevens Real Estate/NYC; Willy Gibson-WTG Sports/Columbus, OH; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton, FL; Denis Barry-CBS Television Stations/NYC; Rick Ramage-UTA/NYC; Michael Ritz-Lenox Advisers/NYC; Joe Maxwell/NYC; John Kukla-KDFW-KDFI/Dallas, TX; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/Los Angeles, CA; Larry Hutchings/San Luis Obispo/CA; David Westberg-SAG AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank, CA.

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