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Volume 24 No. 113

Sports Media

     Big Eight Commissioner Carl James has announced that
Creative Sports will serve as syndicator of the league's men
basketball package for the next five years, commencing with the
1994-95 season.  The agreement provides for the telecast of games
on weekend syndication, a prime time series, and negotiation
rights for network over-the-air appearances.  While a minimum
guarantee exists, profit sharing and combined income from over-
the-air network syndication, prime time syndication and ESPN will
result in an approximate annual income to the Conference of $2M
(Big 8 Conference).

     While CBS will carry the Mobil Cotton Bowl beginning in '96,
"the actual rights agreement" is between Liberty Sports and the
Cotton Bowl Athletic Association.  Liberty secured CBS to
broadcast the game.  Ad time for the Cotton Bowl will be sold via
Libery Sports Ad Sales (GOULD MEDIA'S TV SPORTS FILE, 10/28
issue).  "Liberty feels the acquisition is a major coup and the
first of many marquee sports rights deals it will make in the
upcoming months," according to Liberty Sports Senior VP of
Programming Dave Almstead.   Liberty will pay CBS a "ballpark"
average of $800,000 each year for the network airtime.  CBS VP of
Programming Len DeLuca said that the Cotton Bowl is Liberty's
latest move in its quest to compete with ESPN to acquire rights
to high-profile sports properties:  "Liberty continues to
establish itself as a very formidable competitor to ESPN" (Thomas
Umstead, MULTICHANNEL NEWS, 10/31 issue).

     ITT announced that it is no longer actively pursuing a
merger with NBC and doubts GE wants to reach a deal anytime soon
(COWLES BUSINESS MEDIA, 10/29)....Analysts are projecting the
networks will accumulate nearly $12B in advertising sales for the
upcoming year (WASHINGTON POST, 10/31)....Michael Ovitz and three
regional Bell telephone companies announce plans today for a
video entertainment venture to compete with the nation's cable-TV
systems.  The three phone companies -- Bell Atlantic, Nynex and
Pacific Telesis -- want to make movies, games, interactive
programs and regular TV shows available to 46M homes and
businesses through phone lines (N.Y. POST, 10/31)....Pitt
football public-address announcer Don Ireland resigned over jokes
he made during the WV-Pitt game October 15.  During the game,
Ireland announced there was a tractor in the parking lot with its
lights on bearing the WV license plate "E-I-E-I-O" (PHILA. DAILY
NEWS, 10/28)....ESPN's Gary Miller, citing baseball and hockey
work stoppages:  "Next week's Paris Open has moved up the finals
to a week from Monday so that ESPN can televise them in prime
time -- the first Monday final in tennis since 1990"
("SportsCenter," 10/29).