Coast to Coast PBR positions Vegas event as a ‘major’ MLB Turnstile Tracker MASN case returns to the courtroom Ebersol stands by critique of Conan Pac-12 presents new model to ADs In rebranding, the Bucks aren’t stopping here New NYRR chief puts focus on running Bums get their bleachers back RTA gets access to NASCAR data
SBJ/June 18 - 24, 2001/MediaPrint All
The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. has cut three new sponsorship deals for its coverage of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
Bell Canada, Petro Canada and monster.ca join Visa, Home Depot, the Kellogg Co., General Motors Canada, Royal Bank Financial Group and Labatt Breweries of Canada on CBC's 2002 Winter Games sponsorship roster.
Of the three new signees, Bell Canada and monster.ca were also sponsors of CBC's coverage of the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, said Reggie Yan, the network's senior Olympic and sports marketing manager.
The 2002 Winter Games are set for Feb. 8-24.
PGA CHAMPIONSHIP PREVIEW: As part of its coverage of the 2001 PGA Championship, CBS plans to broadcast an hour-long special previewing the Grand Slam golf tournament.
"PGA Championship: Prelude to the Season's Final Major" will air Aug. 11 from 3 to 4 p.m. The tournament is set to take place Aug. 16-19 at the Atlanta Athletic Club.
CBS' third-round coverage of the 2001 PGA Championship is scheduled to run from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m. ET Aug. 18. Its final-round telecast is slated for 2 to 7 p.m. ET Aug. 19.
SLIDING INTO HOME: HBO Films' "61*," the movie that depicts the pursuit of Babe Ruth's single-season home run record by Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle, will be released on home video and DVD Sept. 11. Directed by Billy Crystal, "61*" made its premiere April 28 on HBO.
To publicize the release, HBO Home Video will launch a national advertising campaign that includes print ads in Sports Illustrated, Entertainment Weekly and USA Today, as well as radio promo spots on stations in the top 12 markets. The release also will be promoted via mlb.com, espn.com and cnnsi.com.
For the home video version, the suggested retail price is $14.95, and for the DVD, it's $19.98. The DVD includes a behind-the-scenes documentary about the making of "61*."
ARETE SPONSORS: State Farm, MasterCard International and American National Bank, a unit of Bank One, have signed on as sponsors of the 12th annual "Arete Awards for Courage in Sports," a production of Intersport Television that will air on ESPN in early November. The event, taking place at Chicago's historic Navy Pier, will be taped Oct. 19.
LORD STANLEY'S VIDEO: NHL Productions is teaming up with USA Home Entertainment to release "Mission Accomplished: The Official NHL 2001 Stanley Cup Championship Home Video," which will be available in retail outlets starting July 10.
Produced by NHL Productions and distributed by USA Home Entertainment, "Mission Accomplished" examines the Colorado Avalanche's championship season. Suggested retail price is $19.95.
BELMONT NUMBERS: NBC scored a 4.9 household ratings average for the race segment (5:30 to 6:30 p.m. ET) of its June 9 broadcast of the Belmont Stakes, up 58 percent from the 3.1 overnight Nielsen average for the race segment (5 to 6 p.m. ET) of ABC's coverage of last year's Belmont.
ABC's 2000 telecast, however, started earlier in the day than NBC's coverage — airing from 4:30 to 6 p.m.
At press time last week, the national rating for the full NBC broadcast (5 to 6:30 p.m. ET) was not yet available.
Excluding the three years in which horses entered the Belmont with a chance to complete the Triple Crown, NBC's 4.9 race-segment rating is the highest for a Belmont Stakes since 1992.
FOR THE RECORD: ESPN is launching "The Season," a series of documentary specials designed to provide behind-the-scenes looks at athletes and teams.
The first installment of "The Season," produced by the ESPN Original Entertainment unit, will showcase Tiger Woods at the 2001 U.S. Open, which was scheduled to end Sunday. The documentary will air from 8 to 9 p.m. June 26.
Slated to run from 7 to 8 p.m. July 5 is a special called "The Philadelphia 76ers at the NBA Finals." For that show, produced in conjunction with NBA Entertainment, ESPN was given access to practices, locker-room discussions and strategy sessions.
Other shows under "The Season" banner that are scheduled in the coming months include a behind-the-scenes look at the University of Arizona football team's 2001 season; a documentary on several prominent Kentucky high school basketball teams and their quests for the state title; and a documentary showcasing Little Leaguers from the Bronx, N.Y.
The football special will run in January, and the basketball documentary is set for April. A telecast date for the Little League special has not yet been determined.
Langdon Brockinton can be reached at email@example.com.
When Tom Moloney was promoted to chief operating officer of England's Emap plc, it paved the way for Steve Parr to become president of Emap USA. But Parr won't last long at Emap USA. That's because Emap plc is giving up on America and selling Emap USA, just two years after it sank $1.5 billion for the American publications, most of which came from Petersen Publishing.
"We paid more than we should have and the market is tougher than we thought it would be, even without the economy slowing down," Moloney said, adding that the company had an $820 million write-down earlier this year. "We will have no real U.S. presence." (Emap plc will retain its new non-sports title, guy mag FHM.)
Moloney said Emap plc is looking to sell the Emap USA divisions (which publish such wide-ranging titles as Motor Trend, Hot Rod, Surfer, Skin Diver, Hunting, Snowboarder, Motorcyclists, Slam, NFL Insider and Guns & Ammo) as one unit.
"We think the business is stronger that way," he said. Parr is part of the unit and will leave Emap USA to go to the new company, Moloney said. "We're selling it lock, stock and barrel. And it should be done in the not too distant future."
NEW LOOK IN PHILLY: The Philadelphia Daily News has seen a circulation jump of 5,500 copies a day since May 14. The boost was fueled partly by putting the red-hot 76ers on the cover for 22 straight days (and counting, at press time), but also in part by a redesign of the entire paper.
"Right now, it's very hard to measure what caused the jump," said graphics editor John Sherlock.
The entire paper got new fonts for headlines and body copy to give it a bold new look as it makes the transition, like many other newspapers, to a smaller size to save money. But a redesign was overdue, since the Daily News hadn't had one since 1992. "The newspaper looked like a ransom note with each section looking different," Sherlock said. "Now it seems like it all comes from one place."
Sherlock said the sports section has more boxes and other formats for culling information from stories and it also has bumped up the display promoting the paper's television talk show on Comcast SportsNet. Sherlock said most papers get 1,000 to 3,000 complaints after a redesign from longtime readers resistant to change but the Daily News had received only about 150. "We've had a good reaction," he said.
IN THE WINNER'S CIRCLE: The Benjamin Franklin Award, given by the Publishers Marketing Association to independent publishers, equals extra sales and a dose of prestige. So said Michele Terry, production and marketing manager for Eclipse Press, a division of equestrian publisher The Blood-Horse. Eclipse Press was formed in December.
Eclipse will reap the benefits, having won the Benjamin Franklin Award in mystery/suspense for "Great Horse Racing Mysteries" by John McEvoy. The book had a printing of 5,000, and the award could spark a boost in sales in excess of 500 copies. "Stores are more likely to order it now," Terry said. "It is very difficult for equine publishers to get into mainstream bookstores. These are high stakes."
Eclipse sells its titles primarily online and at horse-related specialty shops and tracks, along with some bookstores.
The award will help for future books as well. "It gives us increased cachet as a serious publisher in the industry," Terry said. "Stores will look at our next titles more closely."
MORE FROM THE FORM: The Daily Racing Form has introduced the third phase of its new Web site, drf.com, on which it has spent millions. The site now features a personalized home page, a live tote board and complete race charts. There is also extra material for paying subscribers.
BRASSEY'S, BLUE RIBBON TEAM: Brassey's Inc., a publisher of military books, ventured into the sports world in 1998 with The Baseball Prospectus and followed with several other titles. Now it is expanding its reach, joining with Blue Ribbon Media to publish the Blue Ribbon College Football and College Basketball Yearbook.
Stuart Miller can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A thumbnail look behind the scenes
Event: 2001 NHL draft Location: National Car Rental Center, Sunrise, Fla. Host: Florida Panthers TV rights holder: ESPN2 since 1994. The 2001 NHL draft will air on ESPN2 at noon Saturday (part of a five-year, $600 million broadcast deal with ABC/ESPN/ESPN2). 2000 ratings: 0.4/281,000 households (ESPN2)Corporate sponsors of the event CompanyCategory Partner
MBNA Credit card issuer1998 Promotional booth space inside and outside arena; MBNA/draft towel; arena signage Dodge Vehicles1999 Providing NHL with 30 vehicles for event; arena signage; full-page program ad Nextel Wireless telecommunications services provider2001 Designated area next to draft floor where draft picks can make calls using Nextel phones; concourse level kiosk with Denis Potvin signing autographs; arena signage; logo on map and guide; JumboTron spots Nortel Networks Telecommunications equipment sponsor1999 Two 30-second commercials on video wall; full-page program ad; arena signage Pacific Trading Cards will have an exhibit on the concourse, and
CCM will receive public-address announcements and signage.
Note: Draft sponsorship is exclusive to league partners within
their respective categories.
Sources: NHL, ESPN
The following figures represent the Top 10 Network Sports Telecasts and Top 10 Cable Sports Telecasts for the week of 5/28/01-6/03/01.
Sun Bowl to stay on CBS
CBS Sports signed a multiyear extension, through 2006, of its broadcast deal for the Sun Bowl. The network has broadcast the annual game in El Paso, Texas, since 1968. The game matches teams from the Big Ten and Pac-10 conferences and is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET Dec. 31.
Cal games on S.F.'s KRON
San Francisco NBC affiliate KRON-TV agreed to a five-year deal to carry University of California games in sports that aren't part of Pacific-10 Conference network broadcast packages. Terms of the deal were not available.
WVPX gets coaches shows
Kent State University reached a deal with Akron, Ohio, Pax affiliate WVPX-TV to broadcast the school's football and men's basketball coaches' shows in 2001-02. The station reaches 1.5 million TV households. The deal is Kent State's first contract with an over-the-air station after two years of working with a public access channel of Time Warner Cable in northeast Ohio.
NFL playoffs in prime time
The NFL is moving two playoff games to prime time, putting them before a bigger TV audience. Saturday playoff matchups Jan. 5 and Jan. 12 will start at 4:30 p.m. ET and 8 p.m. ET, rather than 12:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. as in previous seasons. The NFL will start its end-of-season Saturday afternoon games Dec. 15 and Dec. 22 an hour later, at 1:30 p.m. ET and 5 p.m.