SBD/Issue 216/Sports Media

Media Notes

Time Warner Cable “invited about 40 football-related bloggers in various markets ... to participate in a conference call” concerning its carriage dispute with NFL Network. The Jets Blog operator Brian Bassett said, “I started doing this for fun, but when a multibillion dollar organization wants your help mobilizing a grassroots campaign against some policies by the NFL Network, it makes you think that this isn’t just a hobby anymore.” But Endzoner.com wrote, “I feel like these guys are unable to comment with any sort of candor, since they’re actively engaged in negotiations with the NFL.” Trade and consumer reporters were not invited to the call (CABLEFAX DAILY, 8/7). Deadspin.com editor Will Leitch was also invited on the call, but said, “I really don't need to sit on a conference call for a half hour, asking questions that, in such a canned setting, I'm not going to get an even slightly interesting answer to” (THE DAILY).

YES OR NO? In N.Y., Bob Raissman reported YES Network’s deal to simulcast WFAN-AM’s “Mike & the Mad Dog” expires at the end of the year, and there are “two schools of thought about the future” of the relationship. If YES “can cut a financial deal that makes sense, they will continue the simulcast.” But Chris Russo’s contentious interview with Yankees GM Brian Cashman, “could be the last straw,” as some Yankees execs “are tired of Russo’s anti-Yankee rants.” YES pays WFAN $800,000 for the simulcast (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 8/6).

Fox Exec Says Net Is Happy
With Status Quo Of BCS

HAND OFF: Fox Sports President Ed Goren said of the BCS potentially changing its format, “I do not believe we have a lot of influence. When we negotiated this deal we were very specific: It’s your event. It’s your sport. If you want suggestions along the way, we certainly have opinions. But we don’t run it. And we’re happy with the way it is right now.” Goren believes that a “Plus-One” title game that would be played after the bowls “would take money away from the other four BCS bowl games.” But Oregon AD Bill Moos does not think the idea is dead, as he “keeps hearing of more support from the coaching ranks” (DENVER POST, 8/6).

BROWNS’ NEW TOWN: In Cleveland, Roger Brown reports FSN Ohio, after “months of relative inactivity, ... has made some impressive moves to replace the loss of Indians ballgames to SportsTime Ohio.” FSN Ohio signed a cable-rights deal with the Browns, extended its current deal with the Cavaliers and inked a deal with the Mid-American Conference. FSN Ohio GM Steve Liverani said of the Browns deal, “We’re going to have unbelievable behind-the-scenes access” (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 8/7).

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