SBD/November 18, 2011/People and Pop Culture

This Week's Newsmakers: Bob Costas Draws Universal Praise For Sandusky Interview

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: BOB COSTAS -- The longtime face of NBC Sports draws nearly universal praise for the impromptu interview he conducts with JERRY SANDUSKY concerning the former Penn State assistant coach’s alleged child sexual abuse charges. Given just 15 minutes to prepare before the “Rock Center” cameras began taping, Costas asks the questions most of America wants to hear without being too sensational and reminds viewers just how strong an interviewer he can be -- a good set up for his new interview-style show on NBC Sports Network launching in February.

 

LOSE: NCAA FLOOR LOGOS -- We understand sponsors want exposure for their dollars during these early season basketball tournaments, but someone is going to get seriously hurt. One player slips on a center-court logo during the Quicken Loans Carrier Classic, while another almost does a split on an EA Sports logo at FedExForum during the Belmont-Memphis game. While no serious injury occurred in either case, the mishap draws the ire of Michigan State coach TOM IZZO, who even offers up sponsor space on his shirt in lieu of the floor. SI's SETH DAVIS also pens a compelling column calling for the NCAA to ban the temporary floor signage "before it strikes for real."

DRAW: UFC ON FOX -- The MMA outfit's debut on broadcast TV is well produced, with UFC President DANA WHITE serving as a surprisingly good pre-fight analyst. The event earns fine numbers for Fox and its other media platforms, while also delivering the promised heavy dose of young male viewers.  But we keep going back to 64 seconds. While we understand that this sort of outcome is just part and parcel of MMA, putting UFC on broadcast TV is about drawing new, casual fans to the sport, and it’s surely tough to do that with just a minute of action. Look for Fox and UFC to figure a way to keep viewers from opting out so quickly in the future.

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