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Posts Tagged ‘New York Jets’

Dickerson and James Create 'Pony Express Award' for Nation's Best Tandem

ESPN college football commentator Craig James has paired up with former college football teammate Eric Dickerson to create The Pony Express Award, which will be given to college football’s best tandem. The name of the award is a nod to the nickname given to SMU’s backfield in the 1980s, when James and Dickerson led the Mustangs’ vaunted rushing attack.

The award will be voted on by a panel of experts, who will look at two- and three-player tandems, honoring the combination whose work ethic, desire, on- and off-field leadership and playmaking ability best fuel their team, according to the award’s website.

“Eric and I were able to complement each other on the field in such a way that together we formed a much more potent weapon than even our individual talents would have suggested,” said James. “We have remained life-long friends, and each season we have always had fun talking about the great tandems that were making an imprint on the game that season. We decided someone should recognize these great combinations, and that really became the genesis of the Pony Express Award.”

No word on whether James and Dickerson will also be creating a Death Penalty Award, though that’d be fitting, since SMU was given the NCAA’s harshest penalty in the late 1980s after the program was proven to be wildly corrupt. The University of Miami would be a frontrunner to win such an award this year.

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Sports Authority Interested in Naming Rights for Broncos' Stadium

Sports Authority is reportedly interested in assuming the naming rights agreement that Invesco has with the Denver Broncos for the team’s home field. The sporting goods company is based in Englewood, Colorado, making them a good fit, the team said.

“We believe the public will embrace this in a huge way,” said Mac Freeman, the Denver Broncos’ senior vice president of business development.

If the deal is approves during a public meeting on Tuesday, Sports Authority will pay $150 million over the next 25 years for the right to have its name on the Broncos’ stadium. Invesco is willing to move on because the company has changed its business model in recent years: Instead of selling directly to consumers, where advertising can pay dividends, the Denver-based mutual fund’s focus is now on pitching to financial advisers, where signage has less sway.

Invesco’s 20-year, $120 million deal for naming rights was set to expire in 2020. In that deal, 50 percent of revenue goes to the Metropolitan Football Stadium District and 50 percent goes to the Broncos — a scenario that would be retained in the proposed deal with Sports Authority.

So, Sports Authority at Mile High — a slightly better name than Invesco Field at Mile High. Slightly.

Woody Paige Honored for Suicide Prevention Awareness

Denver Post columnist and “Around the Horn” contributor Woody Paige has been honored by Colorado State University for a column he wrote about suicide after Denver Bronco Kenny McKinley shot himself last September. Paige addressed his own battles with depression and how he, too, had contemplated suicide eight years earlier. Colorado State University presented Paige with its Suicide Prevention Media Award on Friday. Paige said he received more than 35,000 messages after the piece ran, some from suicidal people who said his column prompted them to seek help.

(Source: Associated Press)

Former ESPN Analyst Fighting Prostate Cancer

Former ESPN college basketball analyst and St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin announced Friday he’s battling prostate cancer.

The 46-year-old Lavin was diagnosed last September but doctors told him he could delay treatment until after the season.

“My family feels fortunate that through annual health exams, we detected my condition at an early stage,” said Lavin in a statement. “This past fall I didn’t want to distract our team, but with the season behind us, we are now working with medical experts and taking the proper steps to tackle this health challenge head on.” Read more

Sources: CBS/Showtime Lands Pacquiao-Mosley

HBO Sports suffered a blow on Friday as Top Rank promoter Bob Arum closed a deal to broadcast the pay-per-view fight between Manny Pacquiao and “Sugar” Shane Mosley according to multiple sources.

Dan Rafael of ESPN.com was the first to break the story while conducting his weekly chat on the website.

This would mark the first time Pacquiao and Mosley have fought on Showtime.

Showtime and Top Rank had no comment in regards to the report.

As part of the deal, CBS will promote the fight by airing commercial spots about the pay-per-view during prime time programming along with a preview show similar to HBO’s 24/7, airing either on CBS or Showtime. Read more

NHL and McDonald's Renew Partnership

The NHL and McDonald’s announced they are continuing their relationship through the 2010-2011 season. In 2008, the the fast food chain became the league’s official quick service restaurant in the United States. It had already held that position in Canada.

As part of the deal, McDonald’s will be the title sponsor for Hockey Day In America, the six-hour broadcast on NBC, and sponsor the 2011 NHL All-Star Game.

“The quick service restaurant category is an important one to reach a broad audience, and as McDonald’s major sports League partner, the possibilities of what we are able to achieve together are limitless,” Keith Wachtel, NHL senior vice president of integrated sales, said in a release. “It’s a marriage between two great brands that will provide unique activations as well as community support.”

The full release is after the jump. Read more

NY Times Shows Nick Folk Is Terrible, Other Fun Jets Special Team Facts

Charts!

Joe Ward, Shan Carter, and Kevin Quealy do their graphic thing on NYTimes.com, showing Nick Folk‘s successes and struggles kicking field goals.

The Jets kicker started the seasons strong, but struggled as the year wore on, missing nearly half his field goals during a four-games stretch. He regained his form, making nine in a row, but as the chart demonstrates, he’s only been called upon to kick short ones. That’s the explanation for his recent success.

They give Brad Smith‘s kick returning and Steve Weatherford‘s punting the same treatment. Check it out; It’s better than Phil Mushnick ranting and raving.

Playoff Football Games Post Massive Ratings

The NFL playoffs started on a high note, at least ratings-wise. The Baltimore Ravens-Pittsburgh Steelers matchup drew the highest ratings for a Divisional playoff game in 17 years.

From a release:

“Yesterday’s 20.9/39 for the Ravens-Steelers game was the highest rating for the AFC Saturday Divisional game in the metered markets in 17 years (23.9/51; Los Angeles Raiders-Buffalo; NBC; 12:30-3:45 PM) on January 15, 1994.”

Hey Sports Media Watch. What can you tell us?

“Saturday’s Ravens/Steelers AFC Divisional Round game earned a 20.9 overnight rating on CBS, up 17 percent from last year (NO/ARI: 17.9, FOX), and up 23 percent from 2009 (BAL/TEN: 17.0, CBS).”

Perfect.

The Green Bay Packers-Atlanta Falcons game helped Fox win the primetime ratings war.

The Best Blog You're Not Reading: The Run of Play

When Brian Phillips is not killing it for Slate, he’s working on The Run of Play. Simply put, it’s the best collection of soccer writing anywhere. Exquisitely penned prose from Phillips and friends.

The one about Ronaldo was brilliant, the story about Xavi even better. And those are just in the last week.

The best part? They call it soccer, not football.

Will Anyone Watch College Gameday on Saturday?

ESPN’s College Gameday returns on Saturday with Tennessee’s women’s and men’s basketball teams taking on the Vanderbilt Commodores at 12 p.m. and 8 p.m., respectively. Here’s a question: Will anyone be watching, especially the men’s game?

The women’s game might draw okay ratings (for a women’s college bball game) because it has a couple things going for it. Tennessee is ranked No. 6. The game isn’t directly against the NFL playoffs. The women’s basketball audience is small, but presumably dedicated.

The men’s game, however, is another story completely. The Volunteers, who began the season ranked in the top 20, have struggled and aren’t very good. Their colorful coach, Bruce Pearl, will miss the game due to suspension. Vanderbilt is terrible.

But worst of all, the game will compete directly with the Green Bay Packers-Atlanta Falcons playoff game. If given the choice, any sports fan without an affiliation to Tennessee or Vanderbilt would watch that instead of a middling college basketball game.

Conclusion: Rece Davis, Jay Bilas, Digger Phelps, Hubert Davis, Bob Knight, Dan Shulman, and Dick Vitale will be talking to very few viewers. Not that it will change anything, of course.

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