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Get Up Announces Analysts as Beadle Boycotts Football

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The worst kept secret in sports media has been confirmed by ESPN. The network will be adding rotating guests to its struggling morning show Get Up! for football season. The lineup of both NFL and college football guests was announced yesterday in a series of tweets from @ESPNPR

The ratings struggles of Get Up! have been well documented, so there is no sense in delving into that again. What is notable about this move is that it is a clear sign that the network is counting on football season to bring a new surge in viewership. ESPN is clearly ready to give new viewers more of what it wants, and that is football talk.

On the Thursday edition of Get Up! co-host Michelle Beadle announced that she wouldn’t be watching any college or pro football, saying that Ohio State’s decision to suspend Urban Meyer instead of firing him is another instance of the sport marginalizing women. Andrew Marchand of the New York Post says he doesn’t disagree with Beadle’s reasoning, but it still creates a big problem for the show.

Why ex-president John Skipper didn’t take this into consideration when putting Beadle on the show is another mystery of Skipper’s disappointing tenure.

If you are a panelist on a sports talk show that is pivoting fully to football — “Get Up!” announced its college and NFL analysts Wednesday — it is hard to see how you can be a regular part of the conversation. At a reported $5 million a year, Beadle maybe doesn’t care.

Joe Lucia of Awful Announcing is not impressed by the guest analyst lineup and wonders if Get Up! will enjoy the uptick in viewership ESPN is hoping this move provides.

This is all well and good, but the question still remains: why should I watch this show? All of these analysts pop up on ESPN’s airwaves all week (especially Finebaum, who hosts a daily radio simulcast, and Schefter, the network’s top NFL reporter). If I’m a huge Finebaum guy, am I really going to make sure to watch Get Up on Wednesday in addition to watching/listening to his radio show?

Furthermore, the only one of these analysts that people seem to have strong feelings for (either positive or negative) is Finebaum. I’m curious if ESPN really thinks that people are going to suddenly start tuning in to Get Up because they know Ryan Clark, or Jesse Palmer, or Marcus Spears is going to be on the show that day.

It is interesting to note that ESPN seems to be trying everything to make football work wonders for Get Up! In addition to headliners like Paul Finebaum, Rex Ryan, and Adam Schefter, Get Up! will also make room for new additions to the ESPN family like Dan Orlovsky and Victor Cruz. A number of the announced regulars have already spent time this summer filling in as a guest host of the show.

 

Sports TV News

The NFL Still Considering Multiple Offers For Sunday Ticket

The NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has not bid for the package but has stated it is willing to partner with the new rightsholder for a potential deal.

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Sunday Ticket Negotiations

DirecTV currently has the rights to Sunday Ticket. That deal expires at the end of this upcoming football season. The NFL is expected to make a boatload of cash when they decide which media organization gets the next rights to the package. The only question is… who will that be?

Alex Sherman of CNBC reports that the NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has decided not bid for the package. However, they are interested in partnering with the new rightsholder for a potential deal. DirecTV knows that Sunday Ticket is a staple in bars and restaurants and is interested in maintaining those relationships.

Outside of the bar/restaurant industry, success has been limited for the satellite provider with the football package. Fewer than two million subscribers signed up for Sunday Ticket each year which made the package a money-loser for the satellite TV provider.

According to the report, the NFL wants more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket. Also on the table is the NFL’s mobile rights. The league’s previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

An interesting piece of the negotiations is Sunday Ticket price. According to the report, a buyer would have limited flexibility on pricing. The NFL signed contracts with CBS and Fox and within the framework of those deals, language mandates Sunday Ticket have a premium price. That’s to prevent loss of viewers from the networks that feature local market Sunday afternoon games. So essentially, the price is the price for the consumer.

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Sports TV News

F1 Renews With ESPN For U.S. Media Rights

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

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F1 ESPN

The racing series F1 has decided to stick with ESPN through 2025.

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

The reported value of the three-year contract is set to pay F1 $75-90M per year for the U.S. media rights. Amazon had offered to pay roughly $100M per year, with the right to sublicense to a linear broadcast network. Comcast’s offer was similar to ESPN’s in terms of value and the structure. They also wanted to put select races on it’s streaming service, Peacock.

Netflix was in on the negotiations, as well. The makers of Drive to Survive, the streaming series that many credit with the sport’s explosion in popularity in recent years, wasn’t close on on their financial offer. Also, it seems F1 executives were not ready to put all of its races on a streaming service just yet.

Currently, F1 receives $5M per year for ESPN to broadcast it’s races. ESPN has grabbed about 1.0 million viewers per race. That makes F1 a more than viable option for the network to invest into again. ESPN will be able to put a small number of races on its ESPN+ streaming service exclusively. The vast majority being on ABC or ESPN.

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Skip Bayless Says He And Stephen A. Smith ‘Sorted Out’ Their Disagreement

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

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Skip Bayless

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were locked in a war of words last week following the First Take host’s appearance on JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast.

The origins of their partnership were discussed and Bayless admitted he did not like the way Smith characterized the state of First Take before he arrived on set. Smith insisted that Bayless simply misunderstood what he meant by saying that he was told the show needed him.

Over the weekend, Skip Bayless says he and Stephen A. Smith got together at the Bayless home in California to talk things out in private.

“He was in LA, he came over, we sat by the pool,” he said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show. “It wasn’t the easiest conversation for a while, but we slowly but surely sorted it out. We got through it, and we have been through so much together.”

Bayless reiterated that he considers Smith a brother. They love each other. That doesn’t mean they are always going to remember events the same way or see eye-to-eye all the time.

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

Fighting doesn’t mean the relationship is fractured. In fact, Skip Bayless was adamant that he remains closer to Smith than he is to most people in his life.

“I don’t trust easily because of the way I was raised, but I do trust Stephen Anthony Smith. Trust him with my life. Always have and always will. I trust he will always be there for me, and you better believe I will always be there for him.”

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