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ESPN To Have a Heavy Presence At The NFL Scouting Combine

Jason Barrett

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Highlighting ESPN’s coverage of the NFL Scouting Combine this week, NFL Insiders will originate from Indianapolis from Wednesday, Feb. 24, through Monday, Feb. 29, with one-hour shows at 1:30 p.m. ET (no show Saturday or Sunday). Suzy Kolber will host with Adam Schefter, Bill Polian and Louis Riddick and NFL Draft analyst Todd McShay. NFL Insiders Josina Anderson, Adam Caplan, John Clayton, Mark Dominik, Dan Graziano and Field Yates and national correspondent Sal Paolantonio will also contribute to ESPN’s on-site coverage, appearing on NFL Insiders, NFL Live (one-hour shows follow each NFL Insiders) and SportsCenter throughout the Combine.

Additionally, the following NFL Nation reporters will be on site contributing to ESPN’s multi-platform coverage of the Combine: Todd Archer (Dallas Cowboys), Rob Demovsky (Green Bay Packers), Jeff Dickerson (Chicago Bears), Mike DiRocco (Jacksonville Jaguars), Jeremy Fowler (Pittsburgh Steelers), Tania Ganguli (Houston Texans), Coley Harvey (Cincinnati Bengals), Jamison Hensley (Baltimore Ravens), Paul Kuharsky (Tennessee Titans), Jeff Legwold (Denver Broncos), Vaughn McClure (Atlanta Falcons), Pat McManamon (Cleveland Browns), Mike Rothstein (Detroit Lions), Adam Teicher (Kansas City Chiefs), Nick Wagoner (Los Angeles Rams), Josh Weinfuss (Arizona Cardinals) and Mike Wells (Indianapolis Colts).

The First Draft podcast will also include coverage of the Combine. McShay, fellow NFL Draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. and ESPN.com senior editor Chris Sprow welcome an NFL prospect to this week’s show.

Credit to ESPN Media Zone who originally published this information

Sports TV News

David Kaplan Leaving NBC Sports Chicago

“I was presented an opportunity that will allow me to spend a lot more time my wife, Mindy, our four sons, and their expanding families. This is far from a retirement.”

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David Kaplan has announced he is departing NBC Sports Chicago. In a video posted to his YouTube channel, Kaplan said a new path opened that he couldn’t turn down.

“I was presented an opportunity that will allow me to spend a lot more time my wife, Mindy, our four sons, and their expanding families. This is far from a retirement. You’ll still be able to catch me weekday mornings with Jonathan Hood on the Kap and JHood morning show on ESPN 1000. It will also allow me to provide you with more engaging and outstanding content right here on YouTube.”

Kaplan, who will turn 62 this weekend, accepted a buyout offered by NBCUniversal. He has hosted several different shows for the network during his tenure.

“He’s made enormous contributions to our network, and his passion, opinions and love of Chicago’s teams have made him a beloved and respected figure, not just with fans but also his colleagues,” NBC Sports Chicago Vice President of Content John Schippman told The Chicago Sun-Times. “We wish him the best and look forward to seeing what’s next.”

December 30th will be his final day at NBC Sports Chicago. He called his time with the network “an amazing run”.

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NASCAR Chasing Nearly $1 Billion Annual Rights Fee In Next TV Deal

“We work really closely together, both from a scheduling perspective, but also just in terms of how they monetize the sport.”

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The current media rights deal for NASCAR with FOX Sports and NBC Sports doesn’t end until after the 2024 season, but the organization is currently plotting what it wants its next deal to look like, according to a report from Front Office Sports.

Currently, NASCAR makes $820 million per year from the two networks. In its new rights deal, it is expected to seek a deal in the neighborhood of $900-950 million range.

NASCAR plans to begin negotiating with its current media partners in the early months of 2023, but is currently happy with FOX and NBC.

“We work really closely together, both from a scheduling perspective, but also just in terms of how they monetize the sport. Whether that’s pushing more brands and advertisers to spend on Fox and NBC,” NASCAR Senior Vice President of Media and Productions Brian Herbst told FOS. “Fox had their third consecutive year of ad revenue increases in 2022. NBC had their second consecutive year of ad revenue increases in 2022. So it’s working for them — both from a viewership and an ad revenue perspective.”

In February of this year, NASCAR President Steve Phelps told the Marchand and Ourand Sports Media Podcast that broadcast television “has to be a part” of the organization’s next television rights deal.

As its current media partners, FOX and NBC have exclusive negotiating windows with NASCAR.

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Sports TV News

NFL Sunday Ticket Negotiations With Apple ‘Have Gotten Silly’

“Apple’s like, ‘OK, we can’t sell internationally. OK, that was important to us. And we can’t sell it exclusively against Fox and CBS. Well, OK. Well, that changes its value.’”

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A report from The Athletic details why the NFL has not announced a new partner for the NFL Sunday Ticket package. David Kaplan claims there have been continued hiccups in the negotiations, mentioning the bargaining has gotten sideways between the league and Apple.

“This negotiation has gotten silly. … Clearly, there’s a problem. I think it’s really clear Apple is learning things they didn’t know,” the anonymous NFL source told Kaplan. “What the conversation is, is Apple’s like, ‘OK, we can’t sell internationally. OK, that was important to us. And we can’t sell it exclusively against Fox and CBS. Well, OK. Well, that changes its value.’”

The report also details Amazon Prime and YouTube remain in the mix as potential suitors for the service, should talks with Apple and the league fall apart.

The NFL is looking for as much as $3.5 billion annually for rights to the service.

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