BUILD UP FOR WOMEN'S WORLD CUP BEGINS; EVENT ADDS MUSIC
The "risk" of televising the '99 Women's World Cup
(WWC) is "significant," according to Laura Vecsey of the
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER, who wrote that "soccer watching
in America rates somewhere behind Robbie Knievel daredevil
stunts and Triple Crown horse racing." But WWC organizers
are "praying this is the breakthrough event for women's
soccer, if not worldwide then at least in this country."
Vecsey: "So far, the sporting public's awareness of the
World Cup seems vague." But WWC President Marla Messing
says that officials are not concerned that TV partner ESPN
might be "lagging" in event promotion. Messing: "I think
with TV, proximity to the event is crucial. I don't think
they do a lot of advance promotion because that's not what
their viewers are geared for" (SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER,
5/25). Meanwhile, BRANDWEEK's Terry Lefton reports that WWC
officials have "heightened expectations" for their licensing
efforts. Officials, claiming to have "blown past their
original" $1M prediction, are now "gunning" for $2.5M, based
on a projected $50M in retail sales (BRANDWEEK, 5/24 issue).
SI's Kevin Cook profiles Mia Hamm and questions whether Hamm
"can measure up to Mia mania." Cook writes that Hamm's
performance in the WWC is key, as there is "no doubt" that
Hamm's a "Madison Avenue dynamo" (SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, 5/31).
POP UP VIDEO: Pop group 'N Sync will headline
performances during the Opening Ceremonies of the '99 WWC at
Giants Stadium in NJ. Joining 'N Sync will be British pop
singer Billie and Irish pop band B-Witched (WWC). In
Chicago, Jeanie Chung: "If there was any doubt World Cup
organizers were targeting teenage and preteen girls, it was
laid to rest when they announced entertainers for the
opening ceremonies" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 5/25).