SBD/Issue 156/Sports Media

HBO, "24/7" The Big Winners At 31st Annual Sports Emmy Awards

Ebersol (l) And Jones (r) Present Madden
With Lifetime Achievement Award

HBO and its “24/7” series were the biggest winners from the 31st Annual Sports Emmy Awards in N.Y. last night. HBO walked away with nine statues, the network’s highest total in a single season, and its “24/7” series was the evening’s most decorated show, picking up five awards, including best edited sports special for “Mayweather/Marquez” and The Dick Schaap Writing Award for “Pacquiao/Hatton.” ESPN and its various entities (ESPN2 and ESPN.com) tied for second with CBS and its various entities (Showtime and CBS Mobile) with seven wins each. MLB Network made a strong showing for its first year, winning four awards, including three for its signature “MLB Tonight” program. One of the most anticipated categories was for sports documentaries, where HBO held off a challenge from ESPN’s “30 for 30” series. HBO’s “Assault in the Ring” took home the top sports documentary nod; ESPN’s “30 for 30” documentaries were shut out. ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit took home a statue as the top studio analyst, and NBC/MLB Network’s Bob Costas won for top studio host. For the second year in a row, Cris Collinsworth and Jim Nantz won as top event analyst and play-by-play, respectively. The top sports shows awarded included ESPN’s “College GameDay” (top weekly studio show) and “PTI” (top daily studio show). NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” was honored as the top live sports series, while NBC’s coverage of Super Bowl XLIII took home the prize for top live sports special. “E:60” performed well, winning two awards: best sports journalism and top long feature. NFL Films earned three Emmys, bringing its overall total to 100.

ESPN UPSET AT EBERSOL COMMENT: After the ceremony, many in the crowd were buzzing about a public shot NBC Sports & Olympics Chair Dick Ebersol took at ESPN over its handling of a cell phone video featuring Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones making disparaging remarks about Broncos draftee QB Tim Tebow and Dolphins Exec VP/Football Operations Bill Parcells. Ebersol and Jones went on stage to introduce John Madden, who was accepting a lifetime achievement award. With many ESPN execs, including ESPN/ABC Sports President George Bodenheimer and Exec VP/Content John Skipper, in the audience watching, Ebersol took out a cell phone and pretended to record Jones. He then said, “I just wanted a call out to my friends at ESPN-TMZ.” At a party after the event, many ESPN execs were fuming at the remark.

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