SBJ/October 3 - 9, 2005/Coast To Coast

Coast to Coast

The nation’s best college lacrosse teams will compete at Gillette Stadium in 2008.
Gillette secures lax championships

The NCAA selected Gillette Stadium as host for the Division I, II and III men’s lacrosse championships in 2008. It will mark the farthest north the championships have been held since 1991, when Syracuse University served as host. The championships, held annually during Memorial Day weekend, are scheduled for Philadelphia in 2006 and Baltimore in 2007.

WNBA team goes public for TV

Local public station WTTW-TV reached a deal with the Chicago Sky to air the WNBA expansion team’s games, beginning next season.

Cavs launch promo in paper

The Cleveland Cavaliers partnered with the Cleveland Plain Dealer and Cub Cadet, the team’s season presenting sponsor, for a scratch-and-win promotion in issues of the daily newspaper last week. Copies of the newspaper sold at area BP locations featured the game cards. Among the prizes were discounts on team merchandise and tickets to a Cavs preseason game.

Local soccer fans lose Force
The MISL Management Committee placed the Cleveland Force on inactive status for the 2005-06 season. League officials are seeking investor/operators to bring the indoor soccer team back to action in 2006-07.

USOC, GE ring up partnership

The U.S. Olympic Committee and General Electric Co. launched an initiative that calls for GE Healthcare to provide portable ultrasound systems to the USOC’s training center clinics in Colorado Springs; Lake Placid, N.Y.; and Chula Vista, Calif. The partnership also calls for clinical research on heart disease and on shoulder and knee injury assessments.

Jackets get naming rights at hospital

The Columbus Blue Jackets acquired naming rights to Columbus Children’s Hospital’s planned family center, which is scheduled to open next fall. The facility will be named the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation Family Resource Center under terms of a deal that calls for the team’s charitable arm to donate $1.5 million over 15 years to the center.

OLN brings down Gravity Games

Officials with OLN canceled plans for the 2006 Winter Gravity Games. The event reportedly would have been held west of Denver at Copper Mountain Resort, which hosted this year’s Winter Gravity Games. Network officials cited the 2006 Winter Olympics as a reason for the cancellation, adding that they to hope to bring the event back in the future.

Kimmel planning Super trip

Jimmy Kimmel is reportedly taking another go at Detroit. According to a Detroit News report, Kimmel plans to host his ABC late-night show, “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” from the city’s Gem Theatre during the week leading up to Super Bowl XL on Feb. 5. Kimmel upset local fans during the 2004 NBA Finals with sarcastic comments about how fans would burn down the city in celebration if the Detroit Pistons won the NBA title.

Nets score sponsorships

The New Jersey Nets have signed 30 sponsorship deals for the coming season and are carrying a 95 percent sponsor renewal rate. Among the deals signed are agreements with ADT Security Services, Marquis Jet, Tiffany & Co. and the U.S. Army.

Training biz gets college deals

Frappier Acceleration Sports Training signed training deals with Stanford University, Michigan Tech and Loyola Marymount University. The deals call for the locally based company’s training programs to be used by the Stanford men’s and women’s basketball teams and its women’s volleyball team; the Michigan Tech hockey team; and all of LMU’s athletic teams.

Florida coach Urban Meyer can be seen on the cover of Gators Frosted Flakes.
Breakfast duo: Gators, Dairy Farmers

University of Florida football coach Urban Meyer is featured on the box cover of a new cereal being produced by Dairy Farmers Inc. and the Gator Network. The more than 25,000 boxes of Gators Frosted Flakes are being sold at Publix Super Markets in major markets across Florida.

Retailer outlines new store concept

Finish Line Inc. plans to launch an athletic specialty store concept tailored to women ages 25-40 who have average household incomes of $80,000. Officials with the locally based retailer did not immediately announce a name for the new store type.

Crooked Stick gets U.S. Amateur
Crooked Stick Golf Club in nearby Carmel was selected by the U.S. Golf Association to host the 2007 U.S. Women’s Amateur championship.

Comets brought down for two seasons

The MISL Management Committee accepted a request by Kansas City Comets owner Don Kincaid to put the club on inactive status for two seasons, with plans to return for a 2007-08 schedule. That timing coincides with the planned opening of the Sprint Center, which is targeted as the team’s new home.

University partners with Redbirds

The University of Memphis and the Memphis Redbirds reached a three-year deal that will give students majoring in sports marketing a chance to work on the Class AAA team’s season-ticket renewal campaign.

Dolphins suit up Perry Ellis

Perry Ellis International signed a multiyear agreement with the Miami Dolphins and Dolphins Stadium. The deal lets the Miami-based company promote its clothing brands at Dolphins games and provides for a stadium sign that will be in place for all stadium events.

Brewers extend ballpark contract

The Milwaukee Brewers extended their management contract with Johnson Controls Inc. for Miller Park. The locally based company will continue to manage all lighting, heating, air-conditioning, security and service operations at the ballpark.

Wolves renew Pepsi partnership

The Minnesota Timberwolves and Pepsi Bottling Group agreed to a new multiyear partnership. Pepsi gets exclusive over-the-air TV and radio rights, along with both in-arena and external Target Center signage rights in the soft drink, iced tea, juice and bottled water categories.

NBA City site would combine a restaurant and bar with an interactive game area.
NBA City coming to town
NBA officials reached an agreement to open an NBA City restaurant at Target Center in February. The NBA-themed facility will have a seating capacity of 300 and a 50-person bar and will feature an interactive game area.

LPGA event looks to Ireland

Kathy Ireland Worldwide signed a multiyear deal that makes the design and marketing company presenting sponsor of the city’s LPGA Tour stop. The event, scheduled for Nov. 10-13, will be called The Mitchell Company Tournament of Champions presented by Kathy Ireland Worldwide.

Hyundai continues Nationwide deal

Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama LLC agreed to a deal calling for it to return as presenting sponsor of the Nationwide Tour Championship. The Hyundai operation is located in Montgomery. The tournament, scheduled for Oct. 27-30, is played in nearby Prattville, Ala., and is the tour’s final event of the year.

Hoops team signs for TV series

The ABA Newark Express reached a deal with Bombo Sports and Entertainment LLC that calls for the company to produce a television series featuring the club. Information on where and when the programming would air was not immediately available.

Companies line up for marathon

Duane Reade and Henkel have signed on as sponsors of the ING New York City Marathon. This year’s race is scheduled for Nov. 6. Drug store company Duane Reade signed a reported one-year deal; Henkel’s deal is a reported two-year partnership that calls for promotion of its Duck brand duct tape.

The NCAA has pinned down host sites for its next six wrestling championships.
Cities get wrestling championships

The NCAA selected St. Louis; Omaha, Neb.; and Philadelphia to host upcoming Division I wrestling championships. The event, scheduled annually in March, will be held at the Savvis Center in St. Louis in 2008 and 2009, Qwest Center in Omaha in 2010 and Wachovia Center in Philadelphia in 2011. The championships are scheduled for Oklahoma City and Detroit the next two years, respectively.

Magic event drives ticket sales

The Orlando Magic sold more than 2,300 tickets in about four hours during a recent Sunday afternoon open house at TD Waterhouse Centre, the highest sales mark in the event’s four-year history.

Eagles sign medical services deal

The Philadelphia Eagles have formed a partnership with Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and signed a medical services agreement with the physicians at the Rothman Institute at Jefferson.

Station putting Phantoms online
Sports station WIP-AM plans to broadcast 21 AHL Philadelphia Phantoms games via the station’s Web site, The initiative is part of the station’s plan to establish a separate Internet radio station. The Phantoms games will air on nights when WIP is broadcasting Philadelphia 76ers and Flyers games, neither of which can contractually air over the Internet.

What was Bank One Ballpark is now Chase Field for the Diamondbacks.
New ballpark name unveiled

The Arizona Diamondbacks unveiled Chase Field as the new name of their ballpark. The name change from Bank One Ballpark follows the acquisition of Bank One by JPMorgan Chase & Co. last year.

Suns find buyers for courtside seats
The Phoenix Suns reportedly have sold each of the 16 new courtside seats at America West Arena for the coming season at a price of $1,500 per game. According to an Arizona Republic report, the price is three times higher than last year’s most-expensive Suns ticket. The 16 seats are located at center court, between the team benches. The seating addition comes following a season that saw the Suns post the NBA’s best regular-season record and advance to the Western Conference Finals.

Site sparks new racing series Inc. and the Sacramento Harness Association have created a new racing series in conjunction with the start of the harness racing season. The Youbet Pace series offers $80,000 in total purses and is the race wagering company’s first series sponsorship.

Chargers issue fan code

San Diego Chargers season-ticket holders could have their seats to future games revoked through no direct actions of their own under a new code of conduct issued by the team recently. Fans who give away or sell their tickets to others are now responsible, under the code, for the actions of the individuals using the tickets.

City picked for College Cup

The NCAA selected Saint Louis University’s Robert R. Hermann Stadium as the site of the 2006 Men’s College Cup Division I soccer championship. The event, scheduled for Dec. 1-3, 2006, will be the city’s first Men’s College Cup in 31 years. This year’s championship is scheduled for Cary, N.C.

Lightning ownership assesses finances

The Tampa Bay Lightning’s owners have dispensed with earlier talk of selling the team, but they warn that the defending Stanley Cup champions need to go deep into this season’s playoffs in order to turn a profit. Officials with Palace Sports & Entertainment estimate having lost as much as $50 million since buying the NHL franchise in 1999. The Lightning posted its first profitable season in franchise history during the team’s title run in 2003-04, but Palace Sports President and CEO Tom Wilson said last season’s lockout caused a setback for sponsorships.

In-state game sets stadium mark
The Tampa Sports Authority, which operates Raymond James Stadium, reported that gross sales from concessions from the University of South Florida’s game last month against the University of Central Florida totaled at least $345,000, setting a record for USF games at the stadium.

Dominic Noel got a chance with the Leafs after a CBC television special.
Court ends teams’ tax break

The Supreme Court of Canada ended a tax break that exempted the Toronto Blue Jays, Maple Leafs and Raptors from Ontario’s employer health levy when they played outside the province.

TV duo gets video game time
Kush Games’ NHL 2K6 video game features CBC’s lead broadcast team of Bob Cole and Harry Neale for audio segments of the game. It’s the first time the popular Canadian hockey voices have been used to overlay audio for a video game.

Reality sets in for TV winner
Dominic Noel was cut from the Toronto Maple Leafs roster. Noel earned a tryout with the club through CBC’s “Making the Cut” television special last year.

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