SBD/4/Sports Media

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  • CBS' FIESTA BOWL COVERAGE MET WITH MIXED REVIEWS

         Although CBS "won a battle" when No. 1 Nebraska met No. 2
    Florida in the Fiesta Bowl, the blowout "cost the network in the
    ratings war," according to Barry Horn of the DALLAS MORNING NEWS.
    With the lopsided contest, CBS, which had hoped its national
    championship would match ratings of the '87 national title Fiesta
    Bowl, "fell considerably short of its expectations" with a 18.8
    rating and a 31 share (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 1/4).  NEWSDAY's
    Steve Zipay writes the "Tostitos were baked, and CBS got fried."
    But Zipay adds,  "Some of CBS' wounds were self-inflicted."
    Zipay calls the telecast "embarrassingly below par, from
    production to relentless entertainment promotions to programming
    decisions."  Zipay:  "Too many cooks were involved in the
    telecasts: the entertainment division, the prime-time division
    (via Bill Cosby's cameos), the late-night division (via David
    Letterman's awkward halftime cheerleading) and ad sales."  Zipay
    notes during the starting lineups, two logos appeared of Tostitos
    and MasterCard -- "a cardinal sin in marketing."  CBS Sports
    VP/Programing Len Deluca:  "CBS Sports is just part of the CBS
    family."  Zipay: "Too bad that at times on Tuesday, the family
    appeared dysfunctional" (NEWSDAY, 1/4).  USA TODAY's Rudy Martzke
    notes the 18.8 was 18% below the 23 rating CBS had guaranteed
    many advertisers, "forcing CBS to give 'make-good' ads to
    sponsors, eight of which occurred in the second half."  Jon
    Mandel of Grey Advertising doubts CBS will profit on the $26M
    paid in rights fees for the Orange and Fiesta Bowls, but Mandel
    believes the Bowl Alliance needs time to grow.  Martzke cites
    Boomer Esiason's work during the pregame and at halftime as one
    of the few "bright spots" (USA TODAY, 1/4).  In Atlanta, Prentis
    Rogers criticizes the announcing team of Jim Nantz and Terry
    Donahue:  "Maybe CBS should have brought people like Montel
    Williams and Bill Cosby into the booth rather than interview them
    on the sideline or use them in corny pregame features" (ATLANTA
    CONSTITUTION, 1/3).
         SEE YOU THIS MARCH:  Make-goods to advertisers may come
    during CBS' Final Four coverage (Steve Zipay, NEWSDAY, 1/4).
    

    Print | Tags: CBS, MasterCard, Media, Viacom
  • DORFMAN FIRED AS MONEY MAGAZINE COLUMNIST OVER SOURCES

         Financial columnist Dan Dorfman has been fired by Money
    magazine over his refusal to provide Time Warner officials with
    the identity of his sources.  Dorfman, whose market reports
    sometimes quote anonymous sources, said Time Warner made demands
    regarding his confidential sources that "no responsible reporter
    can accept."  He had been on a leave of absence since October
    after an article in Business Week "raised questions about [his]
    journalistic practices."  Dorfman will continue to work as a
    stock market commentator on CNBC television (Minneapolis STAR
    TRIBUNE, 1/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Media, Time Warner
  • MEDIA NOTES

         Northrop Grumman Corp. agreed yesterday to pay $3B in cash
    for Westinghouse's defense electronic business.  The sale makes
    it $4.2B in cash that Westinghouse has raised in the last two
    weeks to help pay for the purchase of CBS (N.Y. POST,
    1/4).....The Sports Network has now added the Sports Market
    Place, a sports business directory, to its Web site.  The Sports
    Market Place database will be updated regularly and reviewed to
    reflect current industry changes at least once a month.  The site
    is at http://www.sportsnetwork.com (The Sports
    Network)....DirecTV has acquired the rights from Prime Deportiva
    to distribute the CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer tournament to U.S.
    residents in January.  DirecTV will provide satellite
    distribution to both commercial and residential customers
    utilizing a closed-circuit feed produced by Inter/Forever Sports
    (Prime Deportiva)....Bill Rasmussen, a founder of ESPN, has
    invested in a new Web content developer called Attitude Network
    (AD AGE ONLINE, 1/4)....Although Warner Cable in WI has sent out
    a schedule to subscribers saying it intended to carry 15 Bucks
    games on the Wisconsin Sports Network, Bob Wolfley reports, as of
    Tuesday, the Bucks did not have a signed contract with Group W,
    the company which put the deal together with Warner, leaving
    doubt whether the games will be available (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL
    SENTINEL, 1/3)....The merger of Disney and Cap Cities/ABC could
    be approved today by shareholders from both companies at a
    meeting in New York.  Federal approval remains in limbo since
    most FCC employees are furloughed (WALL STREET JOURNAL,
    1/4)....Art Kaminsky has reportedly signed as TV agent for former
    Bucs coach Sam Wyche (USA TODAY, 1/4).... London-based Dream
    League will launch the first fantasy sports games on the Internet
    this month.  Dream League is an officially licensed product of
    soccer's European Football Championships (AD AGE ONLINE, 1/4).
    

    Print | Tags: ABC, CBS, DirecTV, ESPN, Milwaukee Bucks, Media, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Viacom, Walt Disney
  • NFL, NBC SPORTS AND MICROSOFT OPEN SUPER BOWL SITE

         The NFL, NBC Sports and Microsoft launched their Super Bowl
    web site, featuring previews, analysis and historical info on the
    Super Bowl.  The address is http://superbowl.com (NFL). The site
    will be open for about a month, and "carries the most expensive
    Web ad price yet."  Microsoft reportedly paid more than $200,000
    for title sponsorship and ad slots went from $100,000 to $150,000
    (AD AGE ONLINE, 1/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Microsoft, NBC, NFL, Media
  • TIME WARNER SUES TO KEEP BOWE ON HBO

         Time Warner Sports has sued Rock Newman, promoter for
    Riddick Bowe, asking the court to "uphold the TV company's
    contract with the former heavyweight champ," according to Wallace
    Matthews of the N.Y. POST.  Boxing sources say  Newman has been
    "shopping Bowe to other television outlets, claiming no
    contractual obligation to Time Warner."  Court papers show that
    Spencer Promotions, Newman's company, claims that Bowe's '94 "No
    Contest" verdict with Buster Mathis Jr. "renders the contract
    null and void," as the contract is "contingent on Bowe winning
    all bouts and terminates with a loss."  Spencer maintains Bowe is
    a free agent because he "technically" did not win the Mathis
    fight.  Matthews reports it is believed Newman is attempting to
    free Bowe from Time Warner in order to set up a Bowe-Tyson fight,
    which "currently cannot be made" because of a feud between Don
    King and Time Warner (N.Y. POST, 1/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Media, Time Warner
  • YESSS! SI ANNOUNCES ALBERT TO HOST '95 YEAR IN SPORTS

         Broadcaster Marv Albert will host Sports Illustrated's 1995
    Year in Sports, a syndicated one-hour special produced by SITV
    and scheduled to air from January 13-28.  The show, a look back
    at '95 with SI's senior writers, is produced by SITV's Ken Pisani
    with Executive Production by SITV's Alan Weisman (SITV).  The
    show was previously distributed via home video.  SITV ad sales
    unit "will handle national barter advertising sales" (AD AGE
    ONLINE, 1/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Sports Illustrated, Media, Time Warner
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