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Gary Danielson Believes CFP Rankings Are ‘A Made For TV Deal’

Jordan Bondurant

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A photo of Gary Danielson

The first edition of the 2022 College Football Playoff rankings came out this week. Tennessee, Ohio State, defending champion Georgia and Clemson rounded out the top four, with Michigan and Alabama fifth and sixth respectively. On 97.1 The Ticket Thursday, CBS Sports analyst Gary Danielson was asked ahead of this weekend’s showdown between the Volunteers and the Bulldogs if the playoff committee got the rankings right.

Danielson said he doesn’t put any stock in these early rankings.

“I don’t lose a lot of sleep about this thing,” he said. “It’s a made for TV deal.”

Danielson added on Stoney & Jansen with Heather that it’s just one of those things where it’s just too early to really figure out who should be where. He reiterated that he just doesn’t really think much of the rankings. He said it’s drama drummed up for television.

“The original 2014 playoff committee I think they had Ole Miss and Missisissippi State in the top four in the original one,” he said. “It’s a tough task. They’re trying to apply rules that you have to look at the whole season to halfway or three-quarters of the way through the season. It’s a made for TV deal. No, I really don’t care.”

With a month left in the season, Danielson said even the loser of the Georgia/Tennessee showdown still has a good chance of making the playoff.

“The top six teams still control their destiny, and that’s all you can really ask for at this point,” he said.

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Report: Dusty Baker to Once Again Join TBS for MLB Coverage

Baker worked with TBS in a similar capacity in 2015 and was also an analyst for ESPN in 2006 and 2007.

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Screengrab of Dusty Baker on MLB Network
Screengrab: MLB Network

World Series champion Dusty Baker, the former player and manager, is headed back to TBS. According to a report from Ryan Glasspiegel of the New York Post, the former player and manager will take part in some regular season broadcasts and will be a part of the studio team for the postseason where he is expected to work with co-analysts Pedro Martinez, Jimmy Rollins and Curtis Granderson.

Baker worked with TBS in a similar capacity in 2015 and was also an analyst for ESPN in 2006 and 2007.

A three-time Manager of the Year, Baker managed over 4,000 games over 26 years before retiring after the 2023 season. Baker spent time with the San Francisco Giants, the Chicago Cubs, the Cincinnati Reds, the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros, who he won a World Series with in 2022.

As a player, Baker played 19 seasons, mostly with the Atlanta Braves and the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was a two-time All-Star and won a World Series in 1981.

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Caitlin Clark, Angel Reese Matchup on ESPN is Most-Watched WNBA Game Since Memorial Day 2001

Eight of the nine games with more than an average of 1 million viewers have included Clark and the Fever.

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Courtesy: ESPN

The Indiana Fever and Chicago Sky have been embedded within the conversation surrounding the WNBA this season as both teams aim to contend for a league championship. The Fever selected Iowa guard and NCAA Basketball all-time scoring leader Caitlin Clark with the first-overall selection in the WNBA Draft, while the Sky chose LSU forward and former national champion Angel Reese seventh. Clark and Reese faced one another for the third time in the WNBA on Sunday, drawing an average of 2.3 million viewers on ESPN. It was the second consecutive week in which a matchup between these two rookies surpassed 2 million viewers and represents the most-watched WNBA game since Memorial Day 2001.

Before the WNBA season began, the league had not surpassed an average of 1 million viewers for a game in 16 years. Amid the 2024 regular season as it stands, the league has shattered that outcome nine times with more than half of the schedule to go. Eight of those nine games have had Clark and the Fever, which includes the team’s Friday night game against the Atlanta Dream. That matchup averaged 1.18 million viewers on ION, the largest WNBA audience the network has ever attained as it continues the second season of its three-year media rights deal.

Reese, along with Sky rookie Kamilla Cardoso, received media exemptions following a change in the WNBA media season access policy. This means that they will be exempt from media availability following morning shootarounds; however, they will still be available in pregame and postgame windows throughout the season. It is unknown if this change will extend to other teams around the league as the season continues, but the rule states that two members of the team can be exempt from speaking with media after morning shootaround. Sky players had previously demonstrated frustration by questions pertaining to the flagrant 1 foul committed by Sky guard Chennedy Carter on Clark in early June.

The NBA is reportedly negotiating media rights deals including the WNBA and is expected to leave a slate of games available for a separate deal later. NBA media rights are expected to be granted to The Walt Disney Company (ESPN/ABC), NBCUniversal and Amazon’s Prime Video following the conclusion of next season, although no resolutions have officially been announced. Reports have indicated that the NBA expected to net $76 billion over the term of the new deals, which would nearly triple the fiscal value of its existing rights. Moreover, the WNBA could quadruple the money it receives from media rights to $240 million per year, according to a recent report from Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports.

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FOX Sports Draws Over 3 Million Viewers for USMNT Copa América Opener

This makes the game the most watched non-World Cup soccer telecast ever on FOX.

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Sunday night’s soccer matchup between the United States Men’s National Team and Bolivia, which the USMNT won 2-0 drew an average audience of 3,165,000 viewers on FOX Sports according to Nielsen Media Research and Adobe Analytics. This makes the game the most watched non-World Cup soccer telecast ever on FOX and the most watched English language Copa América telecast ever in the United States.

The game peaked at 4,013,000 viewers from 6:30 p.m. ET to 6:45 p.m. ET. The top local markets were San Diego, Washington D.C., Austin and Kansas City.

FOX Sports said the game was up 191% from last year’s USMNT Concacaf Gold Cup telecast and up 108% from the 2016 average of USMNT Copa América Group Stage telecasts which were carried on FS1.

The next USMNT Copa América game is scheduled for Thursday, Jun 27 against Panama at 6 p.m. ET on FOX, followed by another Group Stage game on Monday, July 1 at 9 p.m. ET on FS1. The CONMEBOL Copa América is taking place in the U.S. through Sunday, July 14.

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