| Wednesday November 18, 2020
|The Pro Bowl is going virtual as the National Football League and Electronic Arts announced plans to present the 2021 NFL Pro Bowl presented by Verizon via Madden NFL 21. After the announcement that the Pro Bowl game will not be played in Allegiant Stadium in 2021, the NFL will incorporate several additional elements which will ultimately comprise this new virtual Pro Bowl experience. EA SPORTS and the NFL will create a week-long series of matchups featuring celebrities, NFL Legends, current players, and streamers playing as the official Pro Bowl rosters in Madden NFL 21, culminating with 2021 Pro Bowl players facing off within Madden NFL 21.
“Even amidst unparalleled change across the sports industry, we are excited to transition many of the signature components of the Pro Bowl-which will go virtual in Madden NFL 21- into a new innovative experience for our players and fans. We remain committed to using our Pro Bowl platform to empower fans to virtually celebrate the best players in the game,” said Peter O’Reilly, NFL EVP of Club Business and Events. “Our partners at EA SPORTS and Verizon are uniquely positioned to help the NFL make the transformation of this high-profile event from live to virtual possible, and we look forward to working closely with them to deliver this unprecedented experience to fans.”
The NFL, ESPN and ABC will continue working together on Pro Bowl, creating engaging content from the start of the Pro Bowl vote all the way through the traditional Pro Bowl week and gameday. The week-long series of virtual events celebrating the Pro Bowl will be featured in a special program, which will air on ESPN and ABC. More detail to be announced at a later date.
In NFL action, FOX Sports saw this week’s regional games score as the most watched since 2009, according to Nielsen. The broadcaster’s regional window drew 18,241,000 viewers for a 71% increase of last season. The doubleheader drew an average of 19,169,000 viewers for a rise of 11% over last season’s doubleheader average.
Meanwhile, ESPN’s Monday Night Football presentation between the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears generated an audience of 11,450,000 viewers, to rank as television’s most-watched program on Monday. Year-over-year, the audience was short of Seahawks-49ers, which was Monday Night Football’s most-viewed game of the entire season last year.
Saturday saw Top Rank on ESPN rank as the top boxing telecast across all TV networks since January 2019 as Crawford vs Brook averaged 1,758,000 viewers. Through seven Saturday night telecasts on ESPN so far this year, Top Rank on ESPN averaged 1,033,000 viewers, up 44% from 11 Saturday night telecasts in 2019.
The NCAA is heading to the bubble, announcing that challenges associated with the coronavirus pandemic will mean that the entire 2021 NCAA men’s basketball tournament will be played in one location. The org is in talks with Indianapolis and the surrounding metro area to play host. As a result, 13 sites across the country will no longer host a preliminary round of the NCAA tournament.
The NCAA did, however, lock in Omni La Costa Resort & Spa, a Southern California golf and luxury resort destination, as the host site for the 2024, 2025 and 2026 Division I Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships. The event’s debut at Omni La Costa will mark the Division I Women’s Golf Championship’s return, after a 28-year absence, to Southern California. “We are thrilled that the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships will return to California in 2024,” said Connie Hurlbut, senior associate commissioner at the West Coast Conference and chair of the NCAA Division I men’s golf committee. “The collegiate golf community is excited about the opportunity to play La Costa as a neutral site for the championships and we have complete confidence that it will prove to be a unique and challenging championship experience for all.”
FOX NASCAR’s Jamie Little makes broadcasting history by becoming the first woman named as the television voice of a national motorsports series with FOX Sports naming her to the ARCA MENARDS SERIES play-by-play role beginning with the season opener from Daytona in February. Little teams with analyst Phil Parsons and reporter Kate Osborne for FOX Sports’ slate of races on FS1. Her FOX NASCAR pit reporting duties, held since 2015, also will continue in 2021.
FOX Sports and professional tournament fishing organization Bassmaster inked a multiyear agreement to carry the complete nine-event Bassmaster Elite Series season, along with the signature Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Huk, live across FOX Sports platforms beginning February. FOX Sports will air 10 events per season with three hours of content on the FOX broadcast network and three hours of content on FS1 from Lake Ray Roberts on March 19-21. For the first time in its history, the full Bassmaster Elite Series schedule will be featured on live television, beginning with the first tournament in February.
CBS Sports announced its college football Saturday showcase for Nov. 28 at 3:30p, adding the SEC on CBS matchup between Auburn and Alabama. Brad Nessler, Gary Danielson and reporter Jamie Erdahl will call the action from Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Olympic Channel started production on a new documentary on Picabo Street – the iconic skier who took home gold in the Super-G at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan. The film, slated for release in Winter 2022, will explore Picabo’s childhood, her difficult road to the gold medal, rise to fame, and enduring legacy. The project, directed by Lindsey Vonn and Frank Marshall, will be Vonn’s first film project via her new production company Après Productions.
The New York Riptide will return to MSG Networks for the upcoming 2021 National Lacrosse League (NLL) season, which is targeted to begin the weekend of April 9th – 11th with the team’s home opener at Nassau Coliseum. MSG Networks will televise nine games throughout the season, while the remainder of the Riptide’s games will be available on B/R Live. The broadcast team from the Riptide’s inaugural season will all return. Dave Leno will serve as play-by-play announcer, Mitch Belisle will be the color analyst and Dani Wexelman will report from the sidelines.
FloSports and United World Wrestling announced a media rights partnership to broadcast elite global wrestling events to fans in the United States on FloSports’ FloWrestling platform. Starting in 2021, the exclusive 4-year partnership will feature over 95 international wrestling competition events throughout the partnership and will include UWW’s World Championships, Continental Championships, World Ranking Series, Olympic Qualifiers, Beach Wrestling World Series and more. “We are confident in FloSports ability to promote wrestling in the United States,” said United World Wrestling Commercial Operations and Communications Director, Gordon Templeman. “They will be an important partner and we know that they will deliver fans top-quality content from the international wrestling community.”
CBS Sports HQ is joining in on the NBA Draft by streaming in-depth coverage leading into and throughout the 2020 Draft, including real-time draft grades for every pick and commentary from a team of NBA and college basketball insiders. Beginning at 7p tonight, live coverage will be led by anchors Chris Hassel and Amanda Guerra with CBS Sports basketball writers Gary Parrish and Matt Norlander, former NBA champion Rip Hamilton, and Avery Johnson, former NBA champion, NBA Coach of the Year, and Alabama men’s head basketball coach. Bill Reiter, Tim Doyle, Matt Babcock and Colin Ward-Henninger will also contribute to coverage throughout the night.
|Cynopsis’ Measurement + Data [Virtual Experience]
SPOTLIGHT: Today at 3:10PM – The Halo Effect: TV Drives Digital
Hear from Effectv’s Reem Ahmed, Executive Director of National Sales, and Travis Flood, Director of Customers Insights present a study conducted by Effectv and TV Squared, called “The Halo Effect: TV Drives Digital,” which found that TV advertising plays a major part in driving website traffic and engagement to connect with potential buyers.
LAST CHANCE TO REGISTER
|SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION
The ATP locked in a long-term extension with Rolex. The new agreement begins in 2021 and will see Rolex continue as the Official Timekeeper of the ATP Tour as well as the Nitto ATP Finals. In addition, Rolex will also become the Official Timekeeper of the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan, Italy. “We are delighted to extend our successful long-term relationship with Rolex, an iconic brand with such a long tradition in sport,” said Massimo Calvelli, ATP CEO. “The partnership with the ATP extends back to 2005 when Rolex first became a valued partner at the season-ending finals and we highly value the commitment Rolex makes to our sport.”
adidas and the National Hockey League unveiled the adidas Reverse Retro ADIZERO Authentic jerseys for all 31 NHL teams to be worn next season – marking the first time in League history that all 31 teams have participated in a League-wide alternate jersey program. “Hockey fans love retro jerseys and Reverse Retro is a great opportunity for adidas to work closely with the NHL and all 31 teams to bring back a design from a meaningful point in team history with a unique twist,” said Dan Near, Senior Director at adidas Hockey. “Our goal from day one has been to work with the NHL and all of the teams to bring creativity, innovation, and energy to the sport with all that we do. What better way to do that than to bring together the nostalgia of historical moments in each team’s history with something new via designs that have never been seen before in the sport.”
In addition, the NHL and the NHL Players’ Association launched the Future Goals Virtual Science Fair. The science fair is a contest powered by EverFi and gives students from the Future Goals Hockey Scholar program “the chance to show how STEM can enhance the game experience in three categories: virtual fan engagement, sustainability and technology/innovation.”
Vistaprint signed on with the Boston Celtics for a multi-year partnership in which Vistaprint becomes the Exclusive Marketing and Design Partner of the Boston Celtics. As part of the partnership, the Vistaprint logo will appear in Celtics signature team colors on the front left shoulder of the Celtics’ game jerseys beginning with the 2020-21 season. Throughout the partnership, Vistaprint will work closely with the Boston Celtics and the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation to support the efforts of the Boston Celtics United for Social Justice initiative, including building economic opportunity and empowerment in minority communities.
In other team news, the Panther City Lacrosse Club was announced as the name of the National Lacrosse League’s 14th franchise by team President and CEO Greg Bibb. Playing inside the state-of-the-art Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, Texas, Panther City will begin play in November 2021 for the NLL’s 2021-2022 season.
The Metropolitan Riveters today announced a partnership with Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey for the upcoming National Women’s Hockey League’s season. New Jersey’s largest health insurance carrier and the women’s pro hockey team will jointly promote health initiatives across the Garden State and Horizon BCBSNJ will work alongside Riveters players, coaches and staff to promote the integration of physical and mental health
The National Lacrosse League announced a milestone 5-year partnership with Wolf Athletics. Extending through the 2025 Season, Wolf Athletics has been named as The Official Goal of the League, as well as an Official Equipment Sponsor. “We are genuinely excited to be collaborating with a company like Wolf Athletics for their professionalism, sheer drive, and engineering savvy they are bringing into the National Lacrosse League. Our goal is not only to be working with the best brands in lacrosse, which Wolf has already proven they are, but to work to advance the sport to a new level through innovation, creativity, and development,” said Kevin Morgan, Executive Vice President & Chief Revenue Officer at the National Lacrosse League. “
DIGITAL, DATA & TECH
Pac-12 Networks has announced the official launch of Pac-12 Insider, a brand-new broadband streaming channel available to all fans now on Samsung TV Plus, Redbox Free Live TV and XUMO in addition to Pluto TV. Pac-12 Insider offers fans free access to the latest football and basketball highlights, classic encores of the top sports and programs across the Conference of Champions and in-depth, behind-the-scenes stories. “The Pac-12 Networks team is incredibly excited to offer our content to fans on new platforms across the country,” said Pac-12 Networks Vice President of Distribution Henry Watson. “The drive to bring Pac-12 sports to as many fans and households as possible has resulted in this latest offering, and we couldn’t have asked for better distribution partners to help launch Pac-12 Insider than Samsung TV Plus, Redbox Free Live TV and XUMO.”
Pennsylvania’s online and retail sportsbooks notched its first $500 million month. The new high in October brought Pennsylvania’s third consecutive record month, according to PlayPennsylvania. Pennsylvania’s online and retail sportsbooks generated a record $525.8 million in bets in October, according to official data released Tuesday. The month’s handle was up 118% from $241.2 million in October 2019 and topped the previous record of $426.8 million set just last month.
Meanwhile, Illinois is off to the fastest start in the history of U.S. legal sports betting, according to analysts for PlayIllinois. Illinois released official data on Friday, showing that sportsbooks generated $305.2 million in bets in September, making the Prairie State the fourth state to surpass $300 million in sports bets in a single month.
AFC forward Carlos Vela led the list of best-selling adidas jerseys in Major League Soccer for the 2020 regular season sold on MLSstore.com. LA Galaxy forward Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez and Atlanta United striker Josef Martinez sit second and third on the list, respectively.
Campbell’s Chunky ordered up a deal with the NFL for EA SPORTS Madden NFL 21.
The two brands have partnered to bring players never before seen content and experiences through a new program called Champions of Chunky: Old School vs. New School, which includes Campbell’s Chunky-themed gear and challenges in The Yard
, the new backyard football-inspired mode in Madden NFL 21. In addition to the first of its kind integrated experience, the brands announced the Champions of Chunky Yard Invitational, a tournament for competitive players in The Yard that will take place on Dec. 5 at 7p.
ESL Gaming announced another installation of the PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG) tournament DreamHack PUBG Showdown. The winter-edition tournament will once again be run as an all-online competition. In addition to the European competition, the PUBG Showdown Winter will now expand into North America and Latin America. “It feels great to announce another installment of our popular PUBG tournament,” said Mike Van Driel, SVP, Game Management at ESL Gaming. “This year’s previous two tournaments have been really appreciated which makes it all the more exciting to end the year by expanding into two new regions with our biggest prize pool so far.”
Nov. 21 sees Epic Games unleash the $1M Super Cup. Competition will be divided into multiple regions. The $1M Super Cup marks the final event of a circuit of Marvel-themed tournaments that has happened since the release of the new Fortnite season in September, named Marvel Knockout Super Series.
The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association partnered with esports league provider PlayVS to offer competitive gaming opportunities for its 12 member institutions. PlayVS will serve as the conference’s official esports provider for select gaming titles, such as Fortnite, Rocket League, and League of Legends, and will begin offering competitive gaming seasons this fall. PlayVS will provide participating CIAA schools access to esports gaming events and leagues, including a newly launched HBCU Esports League, that offer students an opportunity to compete for championships as well as earn scholarship money and merchandise. Additionally, the CIAA will collaborate with PlayVS on educational and career initiatives, for its students, within the esports and gaming industry.
Immortals Gaming Club revealed that The Esports Development League will become the official development league of IGC’s Immortals League of Legends team. IGC’s Immortals League of Legends players will be collaborating with ESDL on some custom educational content for ESDL’s structured training programs. In addition, Immortals’ staff, players, coaches and general managers will work with ESDL to amplify and add to ESDL’s offerings and collaborate on a biannual Scouting Showcase
INDUSTRY & ROSTER MOVES
Athletes Unlimited announced the launch of its Futures Program for elite middle and high school female lacrosse players across the United States with the goal of cultivating and connecting today’s young female lacrosse players. Athletes Unlimited players confirmed to participate at select local events include Emily Parros, Amanda Johansen, Meg Douty, Haley Warden, and Molly Wolf with local tryouts and events held in 15 U.S. cities including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia from March through June.
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|On this Day
1966: Sandy Koufax retires.
IN THE KNOW
The Rifleman Chuck Connors was a player for which MLB team? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
What is the name of The Undertaker’s finishing move in the WWE? Answer: The Tombstone Piledriver. Kudos: Adam Salisch-MSG/NY; Bob Simon-ESPN/NY; Sean Walker-OMG/NY; Scott Jenkins-Gracenote/NY; Eric Bechtel-IdeaQuest/Ramsey; Christopher Kull-The Nielsen Company/Oldsmar; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Brianne Maciejowski-Miles/Sarasota; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Greg Moloznik-GLM Media/Scottsdale; Jacob Ullman-FOX Sports/LA; Lorrie Shilling/El Segundo; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA
|MANAGER, TALENT & LEARNING DEVELOPMENT
Assess company-wide developmental needs and drive the design, development, delivery, evaluation and admin of various training and development programs (including leadership training, coaching, DE&I, etc.). 3-7 yrs of developing eLearning training with strong data analysis skill and excellent communication ability is required. Full info HERE (12/2)
VP, CREATIVE DEVELOPMENT >>
SESAME WORKSHOP/NY, NY: Idea generator in developing and vetting program ideas and genres for creating new programs for in-house development, and identifying the right distributor for each property. Min 8 yrs exp and must be able to share ideas and contribute to the strategic vision/direction of the Workshop. Full info HERE (12/1)
VP, MARKETING >>
BBC STUDIOS/NY, NY: Seeking VP, Mktg for the Americas region, to design/implement an audience-led mktg/media strat to dev/enhance the commercial relationship between BBC Studios and its global strategic customers. Must have proven track record within a global Mktg envir, focusing on customer engagement and strong customer brand relationships. Full info HERE (11/26)
DIGITAL MARKETING COORDINATOR >>
EMERGING NETWORKS, LLC/REMOTE: Responsible for development and growth of web, mobile and social platforms. As well as, all overall support for all digital content efforts and tactical responsibilities as it relates to the website and social media strategy. Full info HERE (11/26)
MARKETING MANAGER (Always-On Show Lead) >>
WONDERY/LOS ANGELES, CA: Responsible for developing marketing strategy aligned to business goals to effectively and efficiently launch and maintain key Wondery shows. Must have 3 years of podcast marketing experience. Full info HERE (11/25)
MEDIA BUYER >>
WONDERY/LOS ANGELES, CA: Responsible for developing and executing media strategy including planning, analyzing and optimizing media campaigns. Must have media-buying experience and a passion for podcasts, audio storytelling and entertainment content. Full info HERE (11/25)
DIRECTOR, OWNED MEDIA >>
A+E NETWORKS/NYC: SME within the Consumer Mktg & Media team. You will develop and manage owned media strategy for the LIFETIME/LMN brands. Partner with Planning, Digital Media and On-Air Scheduling teams. 7yrs exp managing Owned Media within an Entertainment firm with deep knowledge of entertainment landscape, including competitive set and non-linear platform. Full info HERE (11/24)
MANAGER, BRAND MARKETING & STRATEGIC PLANNING >>
NICKELODEON/NY, NY: Hardworking, pro-active and inquisitive Mgr for a newly formed Brand Mktg and Strategy team at Nickelodeon. This role will aid in defining Nickelodeon’s brand mission/values as well as Mktg efforts across series, brand, platforms, emerging media and more. Min 5yrs exp in consumer strategy, digital, mktg or media. Full info HERE (11/24)
DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT >>
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME/REMOTE: Seeking motivated individual responsible for the creation of a WBHOF donor base that will increase donations through donor relationships, contributions, capital campaigns and ongoing fundraising efforts. Proven track record with min 5yrs exp managing/forging relationships with multiple donor sources. Full info HERE (11/24)
SOCIAL MEDIA ASSOC PRODUCER >>
JUMA ENTERTAINMENT/Remote: Looking for creative and highly motivated individual to access and clear videos for network prime time clip series. Must possess a love of TikTok, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, and be able to navigate platforms. Full info HERE (11/23)
CONTENT CURATOR >>
A+E NETWORKS/REMOTE: Skilled/detailed oriented Curation and/or Operations professional who is passionate and knowledgeable about digital media curation, metadata and dist of content to 3rd Party aggregators. You will Curate A+E owned media content using internal media asset management tool. Quick learner with a min 2 yrs’ exp in video media operations. Full info HERE (11/23)
SR. DESIGNER >>
NBCUNIVERSAL OWNED STATIONS & AFFILIATE RELATIONS/DALLAS-FORT WORTH: The Arthouse, NBCUniversal’s Owned Stations’/Telemundo Stations’ internal design team who supports newscasts is seeking a Sr. Designer with a broadcast design background, solid conceptual skills and 3D expertise. Min 4yrs exp, must be able to work on individual assign and team projects. Full info HERE (11/22)
SALES PLANNER >>
JUKIN MEDIA/NEW YORK, NY:Seeking an individual who can combine creativity and strategy with a deep understanding of the digital media sales process. Must be able to work with clients, with a min of 2 yrs in advertising/media and a proven track record of building strong client relationships. Full info HERE (11/22)
VP, SCRIPTED SALES & CO-PRODUCTIONS >>
BBC STUDIOS/LA, CA: Resp for managing sales/co-prod activity in the fiction genres, with clients across both TV/digital. Need to deliver against a stretching bus plan and budget, maximizing the BBC Studios Catalogue through licensing and co-producing programme rights in the US for TV/VOD. 5yrs exp in programme dist, with an understanding of the UK TV industry. Full info HERE (11/22)
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER >>
Newsmax Media/NYC: Responsible for designing and building shows, managing show hosts and production team, identifying and integrating guests, overseeing and executing the production of key video & graphic elements. 3+ yrs EP exp or political news & talk programming. Full info HERE (11/21)
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER >>
Newsmax Media/NYC: Write for fast paced news and opinion show. You are an exceptional storyteller with a command of political news and cultural trends. At least 3 years of national or large market local news experience. Full info HERE (11/21)
SENIOR LINE PRODUCER >>
Newsmax Media/NYC: Responsible for the production and execution of live political news programming, and recorded video segments for television, and digital platforms. 3+ yrs experience line producing. Full info HERE (11/21)
Newsmax Media/NYC: Responsible for the production of live news & talk show, and recorded video segments for television, and digital platforms. 3+ yrs in TV news and/or talk production. Full info HERE (11/21)