SBD/Issue 161/Sports Media

Media Notes

BROADCASTING & CABLE's John Eggerton cites a source as indicating that there remain "'a thousand details' to work out" in regard to the NCAA's 14-year, $10.8B TV agreement with CBS Sports and Turner Sports for the men's basketball tournament, one of which "could be a home-market deal for the championship game, or maybe even the Final Four." Such a deal would allow local CBS stations "in the home markets of the respective teams to carry the game to broadcast viewers, and keep powerful alumni from complaining to their legislators" about the games being on cable in years in which Turner has the Final Four rights. Eggerton writes it would be "a wise move for CBS to arrange such a homemarket deal" (BROADCASTING & CABLE, 5/3 issue).  Turner Broadcasting System Chair & CEO Phil Kent said that the NCAA deal "involved two sets of complex negotiations -- one between CBS and Turner, and the other between both of them and the NCAA -- that began about six months ago." Kent though was "not willing to discuss estimates about the added revenue from advertisers on the networks and the cable distributors of the networks" (AJC.com, 5/4).

MLB Network Has Posted A Sneak Preview
Of Reality Series "The Club" On Its Web Site

INSIDE LOOK: In Chicago, Ed Sherman noted MLB Network on its Web site has posted a sneak preview for "The Club," a reality series about the White Sox. The preview features an opening-day meeting between White Sox GM Ken Williams, manager Ozzie Guillen and players; Chair Jerry Reinsdorf "sharing a meal with Commissioner Bud Selig;" and Reinsdorf meeting with Guillen and Williams "in his office, among other things." Sherman: "I wish the Sox were as compelling on the field as this show promises to be" (CHICAGOBUSINESS.com, 5/3).

ON THE UPSWING: In London, James Ashton reported U.K. broadcaster ITV on Friday will report that it will see a US$30.3M "advertising boost" from this summer's FIFA World Cup, as advertising on ITV1 in June is "expected to be 15%-20% up on last year." The "continuing bounce in trading, after weak advertising a year ago, has increased ITV's income by 13%-15% in the first six months of the year." Ashton noted ITV is "splitting World Cup coverage with the BBC" and will air England's opening match of the tournament, the June 12 game against the U.S. (LONDON TIMES, 5/2).

TUNE UP: NASCAR.com has launched a new enhancement to the site, the Driver Gauge, which aggregates different content across NASCAR.com formulated to capture driver "buzz" from week-to-week. The Driver Gauge ratings capture weekly driver "buzz" based on fan votes on NASCAR.com and site participation, drivers' race results, NASCAR.com Superstore sales, fantasy lineup changes and site traffic (NASCAR).

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