Sunoco Debuts "Essence Of Racing" Campaign Executive Transactions Isiah Thomas Expected Backlash Over Hiring FanDuel Brings On Most Of Zynga Sports Team Georgia Approves Increased Athletic Budget Kentucky Adding Ribbon Boards At Rupp IndyCar Ponders How To Attract Fans Long Term Jeff Gordon Hired As Full-Time Analyst For Fox Danica's Sponsorship Status To Be Telling For NASCAR Classified Advertisements
SBD/November 8, 2013/People and Pop CulturePrint All
It’s time to make your opinion known as the 9th annual SportsBusiness Journal/SportsBusiness Daily Reader Survey is underway. The survey features more than 100 questions across leagues, teams, facilities, sponsorship, media, and more:
*What is the state of professional golf now compared with five years ago?
*Which action sports property is best positioned for growth?
*What is the biggest issue facing the IOC?
*If you were a sponsor of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, what would concern you the most heading into the event:
*If you were a sponsor, would you invest in UFC?
*Which league will be the first to place a franchise outside North America?
*Which league faces the most media scrutiny over athlete use of performance-enhancing drugs?
*Which league would you give the best grade for its testing and regulations for performance-enhancing drugs?
Those are some of the questions you'll find in this year’s survey. Cast your votes and then see highlights of the results the week of Dec. 2. We want to hear from you.
Longtime Red Bull USA Head of Sports Marketing CHRIS MATER has taken a new role with the company as GM of its Northern California business unit. He will oversee business, sales, marketing, distribution and legal from central California to Oregon. He is working out of Red Bull’s Bay Area offices. SEAN EGGERT has taken Mater’s position as head of sports marketing at Red Bull. Mater said, “I love working in sports marketing but from a personal and a professional perspective, I want to run the business and it was a requirement to learn sales and distribution. Fortunately for me, they did a restructure and created these regional general manager roles that allowed me to go from have less responsibility but overseeing a broader area to have much more responsibility in a smaller area.” Mater, who is Australian, joined Red Bull in '99 and was part of the company’s launch in that country. He relocated to the U.S. in '04 and took over as head of sports marketing in North America in '07. During his six years in that role, Red Bull signed a host of new athletes and launched several new events. On the athlete marketing front, Red Bull signed surfers NICK FANNING and CARISSA MOORE. It also moved into mainstream sports with Clippers F BLAKE GRIFFIN and Celtics G RAJON RONDO. Perhaps its biggest signing was of snowboarder SHAUN WHITE. With White, Mater’s marketing team oversaw a “Project X” effort that involved building the snowboarder a backcountry halfpipe to train at before the '10 Vancouver Games. The company also launched a new, made-for-TV sports event on ESPN called “Red Bull New Year No Limits.” The special featured stunts like freestyle motocross rider ROBBIE MADDISON jumping the length of a football field and TRAVIS PASTRANA trying to land a rally car on a barge off the shore of Long Beach. It regularly earned more than a 1.8 rating and its best rating was a 4.2 rating on ESPN in '07.
Former boxer MIKE TYSON's autobiography, "UNDISPUTED TRUTH," is set to be released next Tuesday, and it "might be the most soul-baring book of its genre," according to Tim Dahlberg of the AP. The book, which is "in Tyson's voice" but written by LARRY SLOMAN, "offers a fascinating look into a life that already had been well-chronicled." It is "raw, and so profane that Tyson needs to explain some of the terms he uses for women and blacks in a separate chapter at the end." The book also is "quite funny in parts." Tyson is "brutal on himself" throughout, "despairing of his lack of self-control and feelings of inadequacy." He is "desperate to put his demons to rest, but the book needed an extra epilogue written just before printing to talk about him falling off the sobriety wagon again" (AP, 11/7).
FALLEN IDOL? In Philadelphia, Stan Hochman reviews Basketball HOFer JULIUS ERVING's autobiography "DR. J" and writes, "Slice it and balance the parts, sadness outweighs joy 60-40." Erving "wants the world to know he was a cheating husband, an overmatched, overindulgent father, a naive businessman." Erving notes in the book when daughter ALEXANDRA STEVENSON advanced to the semifinals at Wimbledon in '99, a sportswriter outed him as the girl's dad. Hochman writes readers at that point "will put the book down and take a long shower." Hochman: "When you yank your own knightly image off a pedestal, beware of falling armor and graffiti artists. ... Warts-and-all biographies are plentiful. But this many blemishes in an autobiography by someone we all regarded as noble?" (PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS, 11/8). Grantland.com has an excerpt from the book that contains some passages about Stevenson.
BOY WONDER: FS1's JAY ONRAIT's just-released book, "ANCHORBOY: TRUE TALES FROM THE WORLD OF SPORTSCASTING," is a collection of essays that "doubles as an autobiography." In Toronto, Raju Mudhar wrote the book is "quintessentially Onrait, at times funny, surprisingly earnest and so very Canadian." It also is a "good modern look at what it takes to be a successful sportscaster" (TORONTO STAR, 11/7). Onrait said, "I'm a lifelong reader. I'm genuinely somebody who has always loved books. I've always wanted to be a writer, and probably wanted to be a writer long before I wanted to become a broadcaster" (GLOBE & MAIL, 11/8).
CAN'T LOOK AWAY: In Milwaukee, Bob Wolfley noted ESPN's COLIN COWHERD wrote in his book, "YOU HERD ME!: I'LL SAY IT IF NOBODY ELSE WILL," college basketball coaches are "the most difficult and the most brittle" group of coaches in major team sports. Cowherd cites the example of Wisconsin men's basketball coach BO RYAN, who appeared on ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike" in April '12 "defending his initial decision to restrict" former UW player JARROD UTHOFF "from contacting more than two dozen other programs." Cowherd in his book "likened Ryan's performance in that interview to a spectacular car wreck, but 'radio gold for Mike and Mike'" (JSONLINE.com, 11/7).
With Super Bowl XLVIII just under three months away, sponsors such as PepsiCo and its Senior VP/Global Sports Marketing JENNIFER STORMS have been working overtime on event preparations. Storms along with other PepsiCo brand execs have spent the week in N.Y. doing site visits and hashing out other Super Bowl activation plans with the N.Y./N.J. Host Committee. While the sports marketing business tends to require a seven-day-a-week commitment, Storms this weekend is looking forward to breaking a sweat and getting some fresh air with her six-year-old yellow lab Bo near her Greenwich, Conn., home.
GYM RATS: This Friday night I’ll probably get home hopefully by 6:00pm (ET), and Friday night typically is gym night, which I know sounds a little bit different, but myself and my boyfriend like to go on Friday nights because typically we’re the only ones in the gym and we kind of have the space to ourselves. So we get a nice workout in and it’s a good way to finish up the week. We are all strength and conditioning and spend all of our time lifting weights. We’ve got a four-set rotation that we do, and we work out at least four days a week doing that rotation. It’s really helped get me a lot stronger and helped with some old ski racing injuries that don’t bother me as much anymore given some better muscle strengths.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: We usually follow up the gym with some carryout from one of our favorite places in Greenwich and downtime at the house. We absolutely love -- and half the time go to -- the good old Pizza Post in Greenwich, which is an oldie and a goodie for some great pizza and Italian. And then we do love Thai Basil, which is just off (Greenwich) Avenue. One of our favorite places to eat in, we’ve never really done takeout there but we would if we could, would be Mediterraneo on the Avenue. They all are awesome places. We’re blessed with really good food in and around the Greenwich area.
IT’S A DOG’S LIFE: I am an early riser. A lot of times Saturday it’s because of my priority being my “yellow son,” my yellow lab. He and I get up really early on Saturday mornings -- it’s kind of our little thing together -- we wake up and he’s already downstairs waiting by his leash because he knows that we’re going for a hike. So Saturday mornings I love to just get up and out early to the hiking trails and to the park and Bo gets to run off-leash so he just has a ball. We hike the trails for I’d say about an hour and then he gets his favorite tennis ball to finish up our time and he gets to play fetch in the river so that he kind of cools off from the hike and just gets a little bit of swimming in which is better for his muscles. We go to Mianus Park -- it’s about 10 minutes away -- and it’s really fun when you go consistently and really early on Saturday mornings because you get to know some of the same dog owners and people that are there.
DINNER & A MOVIE: Saturday nights if I’m not traveling that’s usually when it’s date night and dinner out. We go to one of our favorite restaurants in the area, like Mediterraneo, or something up in Stamford or we try something new. Then we go out afterwards and try to catch something that we haven’t done before, a movie or something like that. I absolutely love movies that are very deep and thoughtful, but at the end of the day a lot of times when I’m going to movies it’s just to unwind, so comedies and mysteries and thrillers and action movies are typically the ones that I gravitate towards. Every once in a while we’ll try to go down and do something fun in New York City and go for dinner and a show or something to just get into the city and enjoy all that it has to offer.
CHILI WEATHER: I love fall Sundays in particular because it means football and cooking comfort food. Right now my claim to fame is I’m perfecting a turkey chili and cornbread recipe that’s awesome for cold fall days and watching football. But uniquely, this Sunday I’m actually going to be traveling. I’m going to head out to Northwestern Univ. and I’m really excited to be part of their Wildcat Professional Excellence Program. I wasn’t able to attend last year’s, so I wanted to make sure that this year I definitely was able to get out there. So I’ll go out there for the day and basically what it is is Northwestern brings together alums from many different areas of business and they give their junior student-athletes the opportunity to build relationships with us and sort of network with us. Hopefully what it does is open doors for those student-athletes post college. I enjoy doing that. I’m so blessed to be in the sports industry and have a job that I love, so anytime that I can give back, especially when it is my alma mater, I want to do so.
PURPLE PRIDE: I know that it’s a quick turnaround, but I really hope to be able to spend some quality time (at Northwestern) and see (VP/Athletics & Recreation) JIM PHILLIPS and folks from the athletics department as well as some of my Gatorade peeps that are going to be there and WALLY HAYWARD from the Cubs who is a good friend also is going to be there. So hopefully I will be able to catch up as well with some business counterparts. It’s on campus so I am going to hopefully take on a very quick trip to the student book store to pick up some holiday gifts because my folks are both Northwestern alums as well. I just figured I could grab a couple fun items and wrap them up for mom and dad for Christmas.
beIN Sport promoted ANTONIO BRICENO to North America Deputy Managing Dir. Briceno has been part of the net since its inception and was responsible for building its Miami-based team (beIN Sport)....WWE named STEFAN KASTENMÜLLER to the newly-created position of GM/Germany, Switzerland & Austria (WWE)....AEG Facilities promoted Barclays Center VP/Operations STEVE ROSEBROOK to GM of the facility (AEG)....The Univ. of Colorado named Colorado Department of Higher Education Student Motivational Outreach Dir LANCE CARL Associate AD (CU)....Cal State-Monterey Bay promoted interim AD KIRBY GARRY to the position full-time (CSU)....Cal State-Bakersfield named Georgia State Univ. Associate AD/Academic Support DENA FREEMAN-PATTON Associate AD/Academics (CSUB).
Do you have an executive announcement? If so, please send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In L.A., Ken Bensinger reports a brain-injury claim by Pro Football HOFer TONY DORSETT was "thrown out by a California workers' compensation panel just months before" he was diagnosed with early signs of CTE. State records show that Dorsett's claim was "dismissed in May when a workers' compensation judge ruled that because Dorsett had agreed to an $85,000 settlement for injuries to 'multiple orthopaedic body parts' in 1991, he could not file another claim for any subsequent injury" (L.A. TIMES, 11/8). Meanwhile, in Des Moines, Bryce Miller reports Football HOFer TERRY BRADSHAW "struggled to remember things and decided to visit a clinic four years ago in Newport Beach, Calif., to find out more." Bradshaw said, "I got tested to see what condition my brain is in. And it's not in real good shape." Bradshaw "opted out" of the lawsuit against the NFL by more than 4,000 former players. Bradshaw: "I chose not to, because I didn't want to be used. ... And if I'm not in the settlement, that's one less guy out of the mix to pay and a little more money for someone else who really needs it" (DES MOINES REGISTER, 11/8).
GREAT SCOTT! SI.com's Austin Murphy wrote Thursday's Oregon-Stanford football game was a "victory lap" for Pac-12 Commissioner LARRY SCOTT, who in four-and-a-half years has "expanded, enriched and defibrillated a conference that had previously been static, self-satisfied and underachieving." Scott's accomplishments include negotiating a "groundbreaking 12-year, $3 billion TV deal with ESPN and Fox." That "comes out" to $225M annually. The year before the deal kicked in, the conference brought in $60M in TV money. Scott also "launched the Pac-12 Networks, one national and six regional HD networks that broadcast 1,200 live events" during the '12-13 school year. Finally, he "signed a multi-year agreement with Fox International Sports Channels to distribute Pac-12 Networks' sports programming worldwide." The "rising tide of TV money is lifting all boats in the conference" (SI.com, 11/7).
IN THE "MIDNIGHT" HOUR: Patriots Owner ROBERT KRAFT is a producer of the new Broadway musical, “AFTER MIDNIGHT,” that opened on Sunday night at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre to rave reviews. It is Kraft’s first producer credit for a Broadway show. Kraft is a private equity partner in Scott Sanders Productions, which develops film and theatre projects. “After Midnight” is a 90-minute, Cotton Club-style revue that stars FANTASIA BARRINO and DULE HILL (THE DAILY). In N.Y., Roma Torre wrote the musical is "wildly entertaining" (NY1.com, 11/6). The AP's Mark Kennedy writes, "The high-energy show never lags, making for an excellently paced 90 minutes" (AP, 11/8). The HOLLYWOOD REPORTER's David Rooney wrote, "I can't give this show anything but love, baby" (HOLLYWOODREPORTER.com, 11/3).
NAMES: The NFL Cardinals and President MICHAEL BIDWILL will receive the West Valley Region Advancement Award from the Western Maricopa Coalition (Cardinals)....Pro Football HOFer and Broncos Exec VP/Football Operations JOHN ELWAY on Thursday night had his No. 7 Stanford jersey retired at halftime of the Oregon-Stanford game. He joins former NFLers ERNIE NEVERS and JIM PLUNKETT as the school's "only players to have their jerseys retired" (MERCURYNEWS.com, 11/7)....Heat F JAMES JONES on Thursday was named to the Univ. of Miami Sports HOF, and he will serve as “the grand marshal for the Hurricanes’ homecoming parade Friday.” Other HOF inductees include Texans WR ANDRE JOHNSON and former NFLers CLINTON PORTIS and LAMAR THOMAS (MIAMI HERALD, 11/8)....U.S. Rep. HOWARD COBLE (R-N.C.) on Thursday announced he would retire at the end of his term, and a source said that FS1 NASCAR analyst KYLE PETTY “is considering a bid.” Another source said that semi-retired NASCAR driver TERRY LABONTE also has “been mentioned as a potential candidate” (ROLLCALL.com, 11/7)….Trail Blazers C ROBIN LOPEZ stopped by a North Portland public school on Wednesday “to help kick of the ‘Read Big’ campaign, an effort to get all first graders to literacy by third grade” (Portland OREGONIAN, 11/7)….MLB free agent P JOHAN SANTANA put his three-bedroom, Upper East Side condo on the market in June ’12, and the unit sold last month for $3.15M -- $6,000 “less than Santana paid for the pad” in June ’08 (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 11/8).