History of National Hockey League’s TV rights and why its raising.

April 25th, 2014

The National Hockey League has had a different history of TV rights deals than most other sports leagues. The first broadcaster of NHL games was CBS. TV rights have also been sold to ESPN, ABC, FOX, and Versus. These networks would have exclusive rights for games that they wanted to televise. The NHL has also had teams seek out their own local TV rights deals. This means the owner for instance of the Colorado Avalanche would seek a deal from a local station such as Altitude. Then for the playoffs, the NHL would sell their rights to a network such as NBC to televise playoff series. They would then sell exclusive rights to the Stanley Cup finals. NBC now has the rights to NHL games and local stations have broadcasting rights.

These TV rights deals have continued to escalate. In 2000 the TV rights deal was worth $120 million a year. In 2012 the rights were worth $200 million a year. In 12 years the worth of the NHL’s TV rights has almost doubled. With major networks such as ESPN, ABC, CBS, and FOX wanting in on broadcasting the NHL, it is expected that this number will only increase every year.

I think this has occurred because of the escalating interest in the sport of hockey. More and more great athletes are turning to hockey. This is causing a rise in interest. Fans of sports are also turning to hockey as an alternative to football during the winter and spring. With increased viewership TV deals rights will only become more lucrative for the NHL. The NHL also has a great playoff system that features four rounds before the final. With most playoff series going at least five games, networks have more opportunity to run sponsorships on the most watched games. I think the NHL will have bigger TV deals in the future because of this growing interest.

Opie Wilson, Kalen Dear

Dr. Houghton

 

Sources:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/christinasettimi/2013/11/25/nhls-richest-local-television-deals/

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/rogers-scores-national-nhl-tv-rights-for-5-2b-1.2440645

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5wcdqnBFZKw

 

 

National Women’s Soccer League: Learning from the Past

April 21st, 2014

                       

The ABL (American Basketball League) most recently, refers to the women’s basketball league founded in 1996 that lasted only three seasons. The league was made up of 10 teams and sprouted during a bright spot in women’s basketball after their 1996 gold medal.  According to the NY Times, the league even paid great salaries for their players, “$50,000 to $150,000 and offered players year-round health benefits and a retirement plan.”  The growth of the WNBA, a brand of basketball with backing from the NBA, and the lack of a major sponsorship eventually led to the demise of the ABL.

        

The USFL (United States Football League) like the ABL, only lasted three seasons. Naturally the USFL faced issues coexisting with the powerhouse NFL, winning an initial lawsuit against the league before their birth in 1982. The USFL even had contracts with ESPN and ABC to broadcast their games during the NFL offseason. Many teams during the 1983 season exceeded their salary caps by signing big names including Hershel Walker, and Steve Young. The league even made a run for Dan Marino at one point. The league failed to meet these larger financial responsibilities by increasing their marketing revenue.  In their 3rd season and with an attempt to take down Goliath, the USFL announced their season would be the same as the regular NFL season. This turned out to be a detrimental decision and eventually led to the downfall of the USFL.

 

What can we learn from studying these two sports organizations? First we can learn that it can be difficult to attack a larger league head on. The USFL competed with the NFL and did a fairly good job when their season occurred during the NFL’s offseason. When they tried to take the reins of the market and play their season during NFL season they crumbled. The NFL had already had control of the professional marketplace, a market they had been familiar with since 1920. Once the USFL made the decision to directly compete or dethrone the NFL they were doomed. The ABL didn’t directly take on a powerhouse league, one happened to pop up around the same time as theirs. The ABL was squashed under the foot of the WNBA largely because of their support from the ever popular NBA. Intelligently, the NBA used much of its knowledge about running a successful league and shared it with their new women’s league. The WNBA and the ABL both saw a huge opening in the marketplace for professional women’s basketball in the USA. It was only a matter of time until one would fail due to oversaturation.

 

       

The NWSL (National Women’s Soccer League) is another league founded in 2012. The situation with the NWSL seems to be a little different than the history of the other two leagues we have examined so far. The beginning of this league is somewhat more of a merger vs. a competition for a growing or currently existing marketplace as we saw with the ABL or USFL. After the downfall of WPS (Women’s Professional Soccer), officials from that league and other high status women’s soccer leagues collectively gathered to discuss past and present issues in hopes of turning the NWSL into a super league.

 

 

Can the NWSL survive?

April 21st, 2014

Noah Dillon

Matt Clark

Blog

The ABL and USFL both failed to compete against larger organizations but experienced their demise in completely different ways for completely different reasons.

 

The American Basketball League (ABL) was founded in 1996 just a few months before the WNBA opened its doors. It promised “real basketball” and grabbed the best female players the USA had to offer at the time. After researching about both the ABL and WNBA the answers for failure became clear. The ABL, although having arguably better talent, was flat out boring and lagged in both ratings and fan views compared to the WNBA. Soon ESPN featured the WNBA game of the week but didn’t even mention the ABL scores in daily highlights. ABL advertising and games were run on channels that  no one watched. Nike got in on the action and backed the WNBA fueling the downfall of the ABL even further. Gary Cavalli the president of the ABL challenged the WNBA to something like a superbowl challenge but the WNBA turned the proposal down. Not long after the ABL continued on its downward spiral and became no more.

The USFL on the other hand tried to compete against the NFL by offering a different style of play. They had fewer regulations and made a game more into an entertainment spectacle with world class play. The USFL snatched Heisman trophy winners and NFL veterans to form their league. The downfall came when Donald Trump became somewhat of an unofficial spokesman for the league and tried to take the NFL head on by changing their spring games to fall. Quickly after this choice the league became somewhat of a laughing stock and fizzled down to nothing.

The only similarity between these situations is the problem of trying to take on another larger competitor head on. The ABL had to compete in an already small womens basketball market against the WNBA while the USFL had to compete against the Giant NFL. The ABL was run poorly and marketed in an ineffective way which led to its eventual demise. The USFL was seen as a joke by many and tried to challenge the NFL too soon which is why they were crushed in the end.

The NWSL, or National Women’s Soccer league, was established in 2013.  The season ran from April to August and was made up of 9 teams.  Each team played 22 games, 11 home and 11 away.  The league does have some super stars of women’s soccer, such as Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach, but it fails to appeal to soccer fans everywhere.  Last season, the inaugural season, the only way you could watch games was on YouTube or the teams’ own personal channel, this year games are going to broadcast on Fox Sports and Fox Sports 2.  It sounds great, they are getting on television, but those channels are not even close to being the most watched sports channels.

The biggest problem the NWSL is facing is marketing.  I think their big problem can easily become a speed bumps and not roadblock.  Marketing can be promoted by not over producing.  By this I mean they shouldn’t put out too much all at once.  You promote in a few select markets and let it grow each year.  They could also ask for assistance from the MLS, but I don’t know how much that would help because no one watches MLS soccer either.  Using the celebrity of Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach could also help the sport grow.  Those players, and others, have international success and can help promote their game in almost any market.  It will be interesting to see if they are able to maintain a steady presence in the soccer community

 

http://www.nwslsoccer.com

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nfl/news/20130509/usfl-tim-tebow/

http://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/ABL-Failed-To-Make-Most-Of-Opportunity-2970689.php

 

ABL vs. USFL: Keeping the Game Alive

April 21st, 2014

File-UnitedStatesFootballLeague.png                                                                           File-American_Basketball_League_(1996–1998)_(logo).png

 

In America, today, the people want to see sports on tv. The growing love of watching professional started long ago. But in the early 80’s it began to grow even more with the development of television. People could watch teams from across the nation. With ESPN growing as America’s flagship for sports entertainment, people wanted more. An antiques dealer from New Orleans by the name of David Dixon wanted to start an off season football league to be played in the spring and summer. He developed the United States Football League (USFL). In 1960 Dixon envisioned a spring and summer football league. FOr the next 15 years he prepared to make this happen. He studied the likes of leagues like the NFL, AFL, and World Football League. Dixon also formed a blueprint for the prospective league’s operations, which included early television exposure, heavy promotion in home markets, and owners willing to absorb years of losses,which he felt would be inevitable until the league found its feet in the market. Dixon then signed up 12 cities that would be host to the teams. 9 of those cities already had an NFL team in their respected city. Dixon set up million dollar television contracts with ABC and ESPN. USFL also had their own version of Monday Night Football. The USFL experienced problems in early years like most pro startup leagues. The league dealt with franchise instability, relocation, and closures. Another problem was trying to grow too quickly the league increased from 12 to 18 teams in the first two years. After financial problems the league declared CHapter 11 bankruptcy. When the league folded it lost over $163 million dollars.

The American Basketball League was a women’s basketball league that developed in 1996. It was formed after the growing interest of women’s basketball after the USA’s undefeated gold medal run in the ’96 summer games. The WNBA was being introduced to the public at the same time as the ABL. This led to conflicts with exposure and showed the lack of funds from the ABL. The ABL’s biggest problem was operating as a single entity structure. This made it so all major decisions and and operations were made out of the headquarters in Palo Alto, California. This didn’t help local markets who were trying to gorw and expand. The ABL could not keep up with the financial resources that the WNBA had and the league folded after 2 and 1/4 seasons.

The National Women’s Soccer League or the NWSL can learn some key points in trying to stay afloat from the USFL and ABL. One of the main things they can learn is trying not to expand too quickly until the nation has grasped the league and can hold attention. They should not try to compete with similar markets such as MLS. The biggest thing they need to overcome is how they’ll market the league. Their main target market should be girls between the ages of 7-19. This way they can get their attention early on and keep their attention for the rest of their life. You gotta start at the bottom.

Learning from ABL and the USFL to create a sustainable women’s soccer league

April 21st, 2014

To American society, it might seem it is easy for leagues to sustain themselves and flourish in a glamorous manner given the success of the big four professional leagues. However, to start off a professional league requires much luck, and financial planning and its common for leagues to fail. Two examples of failed professional sport leagues is the American Basketball League and the United States Football league which both folded after three seasons.

The USFL and the ABL were very different sport leagues, however they are similar in how they folded. The USFL had an issue of playing the quality of football that fans were used to watching the NFL. USFL couldn’t pull the top flight talent that the NFL did because most talented athletes from college went into the NFl. Also, even though the USFL played in the Spring, it had trouble generating interest. It was going to have to take away viewership from basketball, baseball, and hockey. The USFL finally folded because of no TV contract, a very ugly lawsuit(s) with the NFL, and a loss of $163 million between 1983 to 1985.

The ABL folded for many of the same reasons. The ABL was created right around the same time the WNBA was being formed. This meant the ABL was going to have to compete for top-level talent. They were also going to have to fight of TV time and media coverage in general. Interest for the league was going to have to be generated somehow and the ABL had to fight for little bit. In the end, the WNBA prevailed over the ABL because WNBA’s financial backing from the NBA compared to the owner’s limited budget of money. The league ultimately folded because of a $25 million dollar debt.

The National Women’s Soccer League can learn some things from these leagues in order to stay afloat. NWSL needs to generate interest for the league. Interest for soccer in the United States can be a struggle. It’s going to have to sign a TV deal so sponsorships start to flow in. Also, it’s going to have to market through promotions. The most important thing the NWSL can learn the USFL and the ABL is to have their finances in order. Players won’t play for free and sponsors won’t sponsor unless there is interest. One thing that they did learn from the past was letting their soccer players play for other leagues for more exposure and appeal. A key difference between the WNBA and ABA is that the WNBA let their players participate in other leagues. One benefit that has occurred from this action are national teams have pitching in for their players salaries to help relieve some of the financial burden on the teams itself. The teams also play in stadia appropriate for the size of their fan bases instead of playing in the nfl sized stadiums in order to pay less rental fees for games. With these adjustments from the past and smart budgeting, the National Women’s League has a real shot of developing into a economically sustainable league.

Kalen Dear

Opie Wilson

Video clips about the ABL and the USFL

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veNFlCiQcRs

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb5VXQ67EDw

Sources:

https://sites.google.com/site/remembertheusfl/home

http://www.apbr.org/abl9699.html

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/18/sports/soccer/clinics-offer-national-womens-soccer-league-a-path-to-success.html

 

Pedersen, P., Parks, J., Quarterman, J., & Thirbault, L. (2011). Contemporary sport management (4th ed.). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics. Chapter 12

 

 

ABL vs USFL

April 21st, 2014

The ABL or American Basketball League was an independent professional basketball league in the United States. It consisted of nine teams and was competing with the growing WNBA. The ABL was created after the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, following the U.S Olympic team gold medal. The ABL become known for their deep talent pool and great paying salaries for female athletes. However, with players making all this money, how can the league pay for it with limited sponsors and TV exposure? The WNBA, though not having the better players or high paying salaries, still had TV time for their games thanks to the NBA and also having their season during the summer only competing with Baseball. Where as the ABL played during the winter with competing sports like NBA, College Football, NHL and College Basketball. With all this competition, the ABL couldn’t make enough money and had to file for bankruptcy in 1998, and the ABL became no more.

http://articles.philly.com/1998-12-23/news/25721488_1_gary-cavalli-abl-teams-abl-most-valuable-player

The USFL was a football league of its own in the late 80’s. Started by a business man David Dixon, he sought out an opportunity with the NFL during their off-season and created the USFL to play during that time. A league with 18 teams, and four Heisman Trophy Winners, they became more popular than the NFL and even began to sign players from the NFL. During their first 2 season, the USFL had TV contracts with ABC and ESPN as well as a huge fan base, and with that decided to file a lawsuit against the NFL, calming that the NFL was pressuring TV networks to not televise the games of the USFL. The Antitrust law was filed and sought out to claim $567 million, when trebled, would equal $1.7 Billion. After 48 days in court the jury decided that the NFL was monopolizing professional football but awarded the USFL just $1 and trebled to $3. The USFL later could not compete and fell into $160 million into debt and had to fold under.

http://www.oursportscentral.com/usfl/trial.php

Our advice for the NWSL, is to find and stay with as many sponsors as possible, they already have a deal with Nike so no need to do anything with that, and grow off of those to help grow the league. Though they play the season with the ending of NBA and beginning of MLB, TV time will be hard to get, so our advice for that is start small with say ESPN 3 and maybe NBCSports just to get face time and help get the name out there. Don’t try to compete with other big names sports during their seasons, which is what the ABL and USFL tried to do and look what happened to them!!!

ABL vs. USFL

April 21st, 2014

http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_profilepage&v=8v2zT52MZ5w

The American Basketball league was founded in 1996 for women and that was during the time the NBA founded the WNBA. Basketball was booming in the 90’s where U.S Olympic teams both men’s and women’s teams winning gold medals and the NCAA bringing up new talents. The ABL is an independent professional league where women can play the game they love, but the beginning of the season some teams in the league could not maintain their budgets and got cut from the league. The ABL then had to find new basketball teams that could be apart of the league and play other professional teams. The league was struggling to keep teams and declared bankruptcy.

Another league that attempted to go pro was the United States Football League for men who wanted to go professional as well. The owner of the USFL attempted to work and compete with the NFL. Play teams that were in the NFL and find TV deals like the NFL. The owner tried to have a bigger fan base by having the season start when the NFL was off-season. The USFL got into to some legal issues with the NFL and attempted to sue them for anti-trust. The USFL won the case of anti-trust and anti-monopoly of the NFL, but only won $3.00 The USFL lost over $130 million dollars.

I think both of these leagues tried to go big too fast, they did not have enough money to support the teams that were in their league. The owners do not know how to run a business and take care of teams, fields, stadium seating, selling tickets and making a profit.

Now the National Women’s Soccer League is a club league that has gone professional. I think they will have good business by learning from these previous league’s mistakes. the NWSL has corporate sponsors like Nike and sponsor the men’s league. The league both have men’s and women’s teams for every club, so that would bring more business to the league and become a business that will grow.

 

 

USFL & ABL vs. NWSL

April 21st, 2014

 

The United States Football League (USFL) opened in 82’ and closed in 85’ after only 3 short seasons. Founded by David Dixon, from New Orleans, Louisiana, the USFL announced its formation on May 11, 1982, at the 21 Club in New York City. During 1982-1985, the USFL fought a bitter war with the established National Football League (the NFL) for players, fans, and media attention. In July of 1986, with a month before the league was to begin its first fall campaign, the USFL won its suit against the NFL, but was awarded $3.76. It’s time couldn’t have been better. The USFL was formed in 1982, right when the NFL was headed towards a strike. The first kickoff of the USFL in 1983 came just weeks after the Redskins were crowned Super Bowl champions after a strike-shortened nine-game season and playoff tournament. The USFL started to get into bidding wars for players. Some teams went bankrupt, in Los Angeles, the team was well known for the $40 million contract given to Steve Young. The USFL wanted to extend their success after their first successful season and tried to play games in professional stadiums but were unable to do so because of overlapping schedules with the NFL. Which along with the high salaries were reasons why it failed to exist after three seasons.

ABL or American basketball league was an independent professional basketball league for women in the United States. It only lasted from 96’ to 98’ for only 2 full seasons. On December 22nd, 1998, with almost no warning the ABL declared bankruptcy and suspended all operations. It had a higher quality of play than the WNBA did because it signed majority of its players from the 96’ national team, a possible reason it failed was due to the higher salaries offered compared to that of the WNBA. Financially they could not compete with the WNBA and had to shut down all operations.

What can the new National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) learn from those leagues in order to stay afloat?

Since there is not a larger women’s soccer league they’re not competing like the USFL had to compete against the NFL, or the ABL trying to compete against the WNBA. If they don’t make the same mistake of spending too much money on salaries like the USFL or the ABL did, and correctly market their league, they should be able to sustain a successful sporting organization.
For a short term marketing strategy:
I would market the individual players. All ten of the highest paid women athletes are from individual sports. However, I think marketing a single player like “Hope Solo” brought a lot of attention to women’ soccer, in my opinion. Probably not the right message, since I think she is a bit of a mess, but she brought awareness to women’s sport.

Long term success:
I would continue working with NIKE and other large corporations for potential sponsors to increase awareness. Possible Women only companies like Lululemon, Athleta, might see more value and give the sport more attention than possibly NIKE, a mega-corporation. Nike is too huge of a corporation to “worry” or spend extra time on such a small market. Women specific entities are more likely to spend more or extra time and effort specific to women’s sporting events.

Bibliography:
http://www.funwhileitlasted.net/basketball/abl-galleries-1996-1998/
https://sites.google.com/site/remembertheusfl/home
http://www.nwslsoccer.com/

http://blogs.nfl.com/2013/01/17/a-brief-history-of-the-usfl/

http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml

 

Super Bowl Food Consumption

April 16th, 2014

We are talking consumer behavior in class today, centered around obesity. This infographic provides some interesting fodder.

Chips, wings, cookies, pretzels, popcorn... Americans will spend more than one billion dollars on snacks just for the Super Bowl.

Source:LiveScience

DI coaching contract

April 7th, 2014

 

 

As an Athletic Director for a Division I school, I am here to set up games and tournaments for sports teams. I havefull responsibility for every sports team both men and women. Another part of my job is to help write coaching contracts which are made to define the coaches’ job and what they will be doing at the university. The coach is agreeing with the terms of the contract and will be making a commitment. The coach will follow the university’s policies about athletics and academics, they will know that athletes are students first.I take these contracts serious where  student athletes are in a safe environment and coaches are not abusing their power.

 

The news and media has shown coaches who were trusted and paid bya school, then abuses student athletes verbally, physically, and sexually. I am making sure that does not happen to anyone in my school. I will be setting up a contract for a head coach position for the women’s basketball team. Many coaches will be applying, the school will be looking for experience and back round checks. The salary of the job will be on the contract and may vary due to the basketball season. if our team gets into the national tournament and wins a championship, they might get a raise. All I want is the coach and their staff is to respect the contract and the school that hired them. If they do not, their contract will be terminated and would be removed from the university.