Sports TV News
Lesley Visser Given BFOA Lifetime Achievement Award
“She is the only sportscaster – male or female — to have worked on the network broadcasts of the Final Four, the Super Bowl, the World Series, the NBA Finals, the Triple Crown, the Olympics, the U.S. Open, and the World Figure Skating Championship.”
Lesley Visser has been announced as the 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient from the Broadcasters Foundation of America.
She is the only sportscaster – male or female — to have worked on the network broadcasts of the Final Four, the Super Bowl, the World Series, the NBA Finals, the Triple Crown, the Olympics, the U.S. Open, and the World Figure Skating Championship.
“Lesley has an extraordinary number of ‘firsts’ in her accomplished and impressive career,” noted Chairman of the Broadcasters Foundation Scott Herman. “We’re very proud to recognize her many accomplishments, not only as a pioneering female sportscaster but as a prominent leader in sports broadcasting, overall.”
Visser has an entire list of awards and honors. Voted the No. 1 Female Sportscaster of All-Time by the National Sportscasters of America and is in 7 Halls of Fame. She is the first woman to be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the first woman to report from a Super Bowl sideline, the first woman on Monday Night Football and the only woman to have presented the Lombardi Trophy at the Super Bowl. She was the first woman NFL analyst in both radio and TV, and the first female sportscaster to carry the Olympic Torch. Her assignments have taken her from interviewing Yao Ming in Shanghai to the Fall of the Berlin Wall.
She is the first woman to win the Sports Emmy Lifetime Achievement Award and is the first woman to win the BFOA Lifetime Achievement. In her 45-year career, Visser has worked for the Boston Globe, CBS, ABC, ESPN, HBO and Westwood One Radio.
“I am enormously honored to be recognized by the Broadcasters Foundation of America, which is vital to our colleagues who find themselves in need of help during times of unimaginable hardship,” said Visser. “It’s essential that we acknowledge and support such a charitable endeavor.”
Will Dundon is a sports media writer for BSM, and producer for ESPN’s 102.5 The Game in Nashville, TN. Additionally, he hosts the Paydirt Sports podcast. You can find him on Twitter @williedundon or reach him by email at email@example.com.
Sports TV News
Steve Rosenberg Out As President of Diamond Sports Group
“John Ourand of Sports Business Journal reports that a memo went out to the company on Monday morning announcing the change.”
A company declaring bankruptcy is never good for the people at the top. Steve Rosenberg is experiencing that right now. He is out as the president of Diamond Sports Group.
John Ourand of Sports Business Journal reports that a memo went out to the company on Monday morning announcing the change. In it, Diamond CEO David Preschlack wrote that CFO David DeVoe will assume Rosenberg’s responsibilities for now.
Steve Rosenberg joined Sinclair in 2020. He replaced Jeff Krolik as the company’s president of local sports.
Last week, Diamond Sports Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company intends to work out new deals with the NBA and NHL for its Bally Sports RSNs in hopes that it will remain in tact. Ourand writes that an attempt to do the same with Major League Baseball has not yielded meaningful results as of yet.
“With the recent appointments we have made to the senior leadership team, and the talented staff we have throughout the organization, I am confident in this team’s ability to work together to execute our strategic goals at this time,” Preschlack wrote in his memo.
Sports TV News
Variety Predicts Sports Betting Broadcasts Future of RSNs
“With the state of the RSN business a little hazy for some networks, closer integration with gambling is something that VIP+ expects to be leant into more in an effort to engage the most passionate local fans.”
The sports betting market grew in 2022. With five new states legalizing mobile wagering last year, that is not a surprise. The overall take for sportsbooks was $93.4 billion. That is a whopping 84% growth over 2021.
With so much money coming from new markets, Variety wanted to get an idea of how much the sports betting industry is actually growing versus how much of the growth is artificial.
The study from the publication’s VIP+ shows that in markets with a full year of mobile wagering on the books before 2022, the growth is slower but still significant at 19%. Writer Gavin Bridge suggests that the statistic could hold the answer for the future of regional sports networks.
“While winning money was the most popular reason for sports betting, data provided by VIP+’s research partner CRG Global in our ‘Sports Gambling & Media‘ report show that one of the most popular reasons was that betting ‘makes the games I watch more exciting,’ with several other reasons relating to watching televised games also important to some betters,” he writes.
With regional sports networks looking for a new model in the face of serious economic uncertainty, Bridge points to Comcast’s regional NBC Sports networks as a reasonable path forward.
Through its partnership with PointsBet, NBC offers alternate broadcasts of the local teams it covers that have a gambling focus. The alternate feed have not been available for every game on the RSNs, but Bridge writes that we could see more of that in the future.
“With the state of the RSN business a little hazy for some networks, closer integration with gambling is something that VIP+ expects to be leant into more in an effort to engage the most passionate local fans. Ultimately, sports betting overlays and alternative game feeds can be anticipated for most major sports in the coming years as media partners look for new revenue streams and ways to engage fans for longer.”
Sports TV News
NCAA Tournament Delivers Highest-Rated Round of 64 Ever
“ For the first round on Thursday and Friday of last week, games accomplished a total audience delivery of 9.2 million viewers.”
The first two rounds of the 2023 NCAA tournament are in the books, and the TV ratings indicate historic viewership.
For the first round on Thursday and Friday of last week, games accomplished a total audience delivery of 9.2 million viewers. This was for contests on TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV in addition to streaming on March Madness Live.
Action on Thursday averaged 8.4 million, up 2% compared to 2022.
On Friday, game broadcasts averaged 9.3 million, making it the most-watched first round ever.
The Sweet 16 tips off on Thursday this week.
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He’s a multimedia journalist and communicator who works at the Virginia State Corporation Commission in Richmond. Jordan also contributes occasional coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, WRIC-TV 8News and Audacy Richmond. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.