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     The "NFL on NBC" pre-game show will be expanded to a one-
hour weekly format next year.  The show will air at 12:00 noon
each Sunday, marking the first time NBC Sports will present a
weekly hour-long studio pre-game show for an entire season.  NBC
Sports President Dick Ebersol said the move could not have "been
accomplished without the extensive cooperation we received from
our affiliates across the country and our own news division" (NBC
Sports).  Ebersol told USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand the move is
"something I've clearly stated for the last two years that we'd
never do."  But he said affiliates have been offered a five-
minute window in the show's first half-hour for their own program
inserts.  Ebersol also said NBC will never use the running on-
screen score like Fox, adding that 90% of viewers say the only
reason they liked it was it allowed them to catch the score and
turn the game off.  Ebersol:  "My No. 1 responsibility is
building big audiences" (USA TODAY, 3/13). NBC has promised five
minutes of commercial time to local stations to sell as their own
to make up revenue (Baltimore SUN, 3/13).  NBC Sports Exec
Producer Tom Roy is expected to be named NBC's new No. 1 game
producer (USA TODAY, 3/13).
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