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Notre Dame Season Opener Exclusively On Peacock

The school is airing the rest of its home games on NBC and Peacock.

Russ Heltman

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Courtesy: NBC

Notre Dame football is making their 2021 season opener exclusive to Peacock subscribers only. The network and University announced the changes to the TV schedule on Wednesday. Notre Dame vs. Toledo on Sept. 11 is now only available to Peacock subscribers; the rest of the 2021 home schedule is airing on both NBC and Peacock.

The school aired the annual Irish Blue-Gold Game this spring exclusively on Peacock. 

“Dating back to airing Sunday football replays with Lindsey Nelson, we have always strived for innovation in the media space. Our partnership with NBC and Peacock only solidifies that mission,” Notre Dame director of athletics Jack Swarbrick said. “Bringing Notre Dame football to Peacock is just the next step in the evolution of our relationship.”

Notre Dame and NBC’s decision to make the season opener a Peacock-exclusive falls in line with the network’s other decisions around the OTT app. WWE pay-per-view events have been a big factor in subscriber growth over the past year, as has the Tokyo Olympics, where the men’s basketball games are airing on Peacock. 

In South Bend, Notre Dame has been hard at work building up their new on-demand content service, Fighting Irish TV, which houses replays of Fighting Irish football games along with other exclusive content.

“Fighting Irish TV and Peacock shows the evolution of how media is consumed by our fans and television viewers, alike,” Swarbrick said. “… I see no better example of this than Peacock’s success in delivering fans wall-to-wall content during the Tokyo Olympics.”

Fighting Irish faithful are now tasked with adding another subscription service to their arsenal if they want to watch Notre Dame battle Toledo. Peacock is throwing its weight around with these exclusive offerings to stand out amongst its peers. With a fanbase the size of Notre Dame’s, it was only a matter of time before they incorporated those fans into subscriber growth.

Sports TV News

FOX Sued for Patent Infringement Over NFL Scheduling

“Recentive Analytics filed suit against FOX in a Delaware federal court on November 29 according to Yahoo Sports.”

Jordan Bondurant

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An analytics company is suing FOX over claims that the network developed a mapping tool using their patented technology to create a season slate of NFL games.

Recentive Analytics filed suit against FOX in a Delaware federal court on November 29 according to Yahoo Sports.

The lawsuit claims FOX used access to Recentive’s predictive analytics tools to develop a resource of their own that would create optimal schedules for its 1 and 4 p.m. NFLwindows.

The company is seeking a declaration that FOX infringed on two of its patents. Recentive is also suing for damages and wants an injunction keeping FOX from using Recentive tech and preventing the network from “selling, offering for sale, marketing or using any internal network and mapping analytics tool for the scheduling and regionalization of events covered by the patents.”

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Sports TV News

FOX Will Use Chris Fallica On Belmont Stakes Coverage

“While the Preakness and the Kentucky Derby remain at NBC, The Belmont Stakes is moving to FOX as part of the network’s deal with the New York Racing Association.”

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The Bear will be more than just a college football presence when he moves to FOX. Chris Fallica wrapped his final duties for ESPN last week and is now headed to a new network and will tackle some new responsibilities.

Fallica’s new role at FOX will involve plenty of sports gambling content. Richard Deitsch of The Athletic reports that content will include horse racing.

“One Fox Sports source said look for him to appear on the Belmont Stakes coverage,” Deitsch wrote in his weekly media column.

Starting in 2023, horse racing’s Triple Crown will not be seen all in one place. While the Preakness and the Kentucky Derby remain at NBC, The Belmont Stakes is moving to FOX as part of the network’s deal with the New York Racing Association.

How the network intends to use Chris Fallica on the broadcast is not clear. Given that he is coming to the network to contribute to gambling conversations, it is likely he would either be making picks or at least reviewing odds right up to the start of the race.

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Sports TV News

NBCUniversal CEO Expects Disney To Buy Company’s Hulu Stake

“Shell noted that live sports coverage is helping make the stake in Hulu a luxury for NBCUniversal.”

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The Walt Disney Company owns 67% of Hulu. The other 33% is owned by NBCUniversal. The latter company doesn’t expect that to be the case forever.

“It’s worth a lot of money,” NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell said at an investor conference earlier this week, “and I think there’s no indication that anything else is going to happen than Disney writing us a big check.”

Hulu is primarily a platform for movies and television shows. It is a major part of Disney’s deal with the NHL though. The streaming giant is part of the package of 103 games that are exclusive to ESPN and ABC. Hulu is also a live TV provider for many. The company’s Hulu Plus Live TV package had over 4 million subscribers as of the summer of 2022.

Shell noted that live sports coverage is helping make the stake in Hulu a luxury for NBCUniversal. He credits sports and content migrated from Hulu as the reason Peacock has grown to 18 million paid subscriptions since September.

Deadline reports that if Disney does want to acquire NBCUniversal’s stake in Hulu, “the price could fluctuate but will be in the tens of billions of dollars.”

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