Connect with us
BSM Summit
blank

Sports TV News

FS1 Grows As It Turns 2

Jason Barrett

Published

on

Fox Sports 1 turned 2 years old Monday. The higher-ups at Fox Sports consider it a happy birthday.

Although there have been bumps along the way – typical for any new network – FS1 viewership was up significantly in Year 2. The driving force behind that increase: more and better live events, including the Women’s World Cup and the men’s U.S. Open.

“When we launched the network, we were a little bit like a restaurant that opens up and is only able to serve half the menu,” Mike Mulvihill, Fox Sports senior vice president of programming and research, said in a Q&A with Cablefax. “The second year, we’re finally able to serve the full menu, and I think we’re a lot closer to what we envisioned ourselves being from the beginning.”

Ah, yes. The beginning. Fox heavily promoted FS1’s launch, emphasizing its supposedly superior sense of “fun” and hailing it as a legitimate rival to ESPN. Privately, Fox executives knew it would take years to rise to that level in terms of audience and awareness – and FS1 is still a long way from getting there, if it ever does.

That aggressive marketing campaign created unrealistic expectations. It was typical boldness for Fox, however, and as one network insider phrased it, it put FS1 “in the conversation with the heavyweight champion” – i.e., ESPN.

In reality, it would take FS1 considerable time to forge its identity. ESPN looks nothing like the fledgling network that launched 36 years ago, and FS1 already has undergone numerous, significant changes.

Remember when Regis Philbin was a centerpiece of FS1’s daytime lineup? And “Fox Sports Live” featured that mismatched discussion panel? That’s several iterations ago now. FS1 is about to make the outspoken Colin Cowherd, late of ESPN, its new daytime star, simulcasting his relaunched radio show, “The Herd,” from 9 a.m.-noon Monday-Friday.

(Cowherd’s show will be heard locally on KLAC/570, pushing “L.A. Today” with Bill Reiter and Leeann Tweeden to the noon-3 p.m. slot in place of “Jay Mohr Sports.”)

Luring Cowherd was the first big move by executive Jamie Horowitz, who also came from ESPN. If you can’t beat ’em … hire ’em?

Other changes include consolidating Fox Sports’ cable and digital news operations, resulting in layoffs. That sort of collateral damage is never a good thing for anyone involved.

Although in a better place now, FS1 continues to evolve. It recently added Bundesliga soccer matches and soon will debut a new Premier Boxing Champions series, “Toe-to-Toe Tuesdays.” It’s all about expanding and enhancing the live-events inventory.

“Two years in, we’re basically where we expected to be all along,” Mulvihill told Cablefax. “It just was a different path to the same place.”

Credit to the Orange County Register who originally published this article

Sports TV News

Kirk Herbstreit Energized, Not Worn Down By College GameDay

“I’ve been invigorated with this energy of the show and some of the different locations we’ve been to with the show.”

blank

Published

on

blank

Few in broadcasting have as busy of a schedule as Kirk Herbstreit. From announcing Thursday Night Football for Amazon Prime Video, to working as an analyst for ESPN’s College GameDay and Saturday night football schedule, the man stays busy. It would be easy to be worn down, but Herbstreit says he’s been energized by GameDay this year, rather than worn down, and pointed to new addition Pat McAfee as a a reason why.

“Pat has been huge for the show but for me personally, I can’t even describe what he means to me,” Herbstreit said. “For the travel and the fatigue. We’re in an era where I have four sons and their in their apartments in college and I don’t know if they have a TV. We’re in an era where nobody watches TV. It’s the damndest thing. They look at TV like I used to look at my parents and their radio.

“You look at everyone’s ratings and they’re going down, and you look at College GameDay and it’s the best 11 or 12 week start for the show. I’ve been invigorated with this energy of the show and some of the different locations we’ve been to with the show. It’s been a blast and it’s a year I’ll never forget.”

When asked whether Herbstreit was committed to his current schedule, he affirmed he’s locked in for the remainder of his contract.

“I’m completely committed. I think the part where people are like ‘Geez, you call a game on Thursday and a game on Saturday?’, then you throw in a three-hour show every week. I would never even let my mind think of that. I’m already think about what I wanna do after my five-years. Do I wanna stop working? Do I wanna just enjoy my family? Just do GameDay? Just do the Saturday night thing? I don’t know. I’m already think about ‘I’m on the treadmill for four more years’ and then see where I’m at at that stage of life. But it hasn’t crossed my mind to take something off my plate.”

Continue Reading

Sports TV News

World Cup Opener Delivers Big Ratings For FOX Sports

FS1 and FOX Sports streams accounted for 3.23 million viewers for the English-language broadcast of the opener. That number was 1.72 million in Russia four years ago.

blank

Published

on

blank

Many questions circled around the unusually timed 2022 World Cup and what it would mean for television ratings. FOX Sports saw a gigantic increase in ratings for this tournament’s opener compared to 2018.

FS1 and Telemundo combined for an audience of 7.23 million viewers for the Ecuador-Qatar opening match. That is a 128% increase from the Russia-Saudi Arabia match that opened the 2018 event.

FS1 and FOX Sports streams accounted for 3.23 million viewers for the English-language broadcast of the opener. That number was 1.72 million in Russia four years ago.

The broadcast on FS1 topped 43 of the 48 games from the group stage of the 2018 tournament.

In 2018, the event began in June with a 10:30 ET start. This year, the tournament got underway on a Saturday at 1:00 PM ET.

Continue Reading

Sports TV News

Charles Barkley Laments Loss of Michael Jordan Friendship As Biggest Media Career Fallout

“Michael got offended about something I said about him. And we haven’t spoken in probably almost 10 years. And he was my best friend at the time.”

blank

Published

on

Charles Barkley

During an appearance on the Let’s Go! podcast with Tom Brady, Larry Fitzgerald, and Jim Gray, Inside The NBA’s Charles Barkley said the loss of his friendship with Michael Jordan has been the biggest downside of his media career.

Brady asked what the biggest issue has been with Barkley’s unlimited candor has been during his media career, and Barkley immediately turned to his relationship with Jordan.

“Michael Jordan, losing his friendship was probably the most prominent thing that’s happened to me,” Barkley admitted. “But I was being honest about what I thought. I said, ‘Listen, the toughest thing about Michael, he’s got to put better people around him.’ Because the toughest thing, when you’re famous, they’re on your private jet, you’re buying all the drinks, you’re buying all the dinners. Very few people are gonna be honest with you.”

Barkley was alluding to his comments made on ESPN 1000 in 2012 where he said Jordan had “not done a good job” in owning the Charlotte Hornets.

“I try to surround myself with people like, hey, if I’m screwing up, please tell me,” Barkley explained. “And Michael got offended about something I said about him. And we haven’t spoken in probably almost 10 years. And he was my best friend at the time. And I love the dude like a brother and we’re both stubborn and we haven’t talked.”

Continue Reading
Advertisement blank
Advertisement blank

Barrett Media Writers

Copyright © 2022 Barrett Media.