SBD/August 19, 2011/People and Pop Culture

This Week's Newsmakers: UFC Heads To Broadcast TV With Fox Sports Deal

THE DAILY each Friday offers our take on the performances over the past week of people and entities in sports business. Here are this week's newsmakers:

WIN: UFC -- The dynamic trio of the FERTITTA brothers and DANA WHITE score what could be UFC's most important deal yet, landing the outfit's first-ever broadcast TV package with Fox. The seven-year deal, which includes four fight cards per year on the network, is an ideal marriage of a sport with a young fan base seeking to go more mainstream and a network that leads the way in drawing that demo in bunches. Exposure to advertisers also will increase, leading to more lucrative endorsement deals and opening other business opportunities for fighters and the league.

LOSE: UNIV. OF MIAMI -- At a time when NCAA President MARK EMMERT has made it a point of emphasis to crack down on rogue programs, the Coral Gables institution is dealt a potentially devastating blow by a convicted former booster. News of the multitude of allegations levied against the school dominated the headlines this week. This one will be a true test of the leadership of AD SHAWN EICHORST and school President DONNA SHALALA. The big question to be answered now is how severe a penalty the NCAA will slap on the program.

DRAW: LOGAN MORRISON -- While media types love the Twitter enthusiasm from Morrison, his constant social media use came back to bite him this week as the Marlins demoted the outfielder to their Triple-A affiliate in New Orleans. The last straw seemed to be Morrison skipping a team-sponsored event with season-ticket holders, and management and fellow players had been warning him for months to tone it down on Twitter. Hopefully the demotion will teach the clearly talented Morrison to balance improving his game on the field and using social media off of it.

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