By Rick Horrow and Karla Swatek
September 2, 2011
“Bust”: Top Five Reasons the Armageddon is Near
1. A deal to sell a minority stake of the New York Mets for $200 million to investor David Einhorn has fallen apart. Einhorn had been negotiating with Mets owners the Wilpons for the last several months, but talks ended when the Wilpons reportedly changed the deal’s terms at the last minute.
2. Texas A&M officially notified the Big 12 about its intentions to leave the conference effective next summer. The decision will cost Texas A&M an estimated $15 million exit fee and puts the Big 12’s existing TV deals in jeopardy.
3. Mississippi’s PGA Tour event is in jeopardy after Viking Range Corp. announced it would not return next year as the tournament’s title sponsor. Viking had owned the entitlement since 2007. The event needs to find a new title sponsor or a consortium of sponsors by late September, or else the 2011 tournament will be cancelled.
4. The California Legislative Analyst’s Office expressed doubts about the economic impact that would come from building Farmers Field in downtown Los Angeles. AEG President Tim Leiweke has said that he will not move forward with stadium plans until a bill to restrain legal challenges is passed.
5. The Miami Dolphins have received widespread criticism for its plans to honor the Florida Gators’ 2008 National Championship football team. Since the promotion would take place before the game against Tim Tebow’s Denver Broncos, it’s being viewed as inviting to opposing fans and insulting to the local Miami Hurricanes.
“Boom”: Top Five Reasons that Prosperity is Right Around the Corner
1. UPS signed sponsorship agreements with 68 NCAA schools, valued at a total of $100 million over the next four years. The deal, which was brokered by IMG College, is being heralded as the largest non-TV network college sports sponsorship in history.
2. The PGA Tour signed deals with CBS and NBC to extend their TV rights agreement from 2013-2021. The TV deals coincide with the remaining years of the Tour’s 15-year cable agreement with the Golf Channel. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
3. ATP Media, which is responsible for producing and distributing programming for the ATP Tour, expects to generate $60 million in revenue this year, according to Daniel Kaplan of SportsBusiness Journal. ATP Media’s revenue has grown 500% in the last five years, and now is the ATP’s biggest revenue source.
4. Philadelphia Eagles QB Michael Vick signed a six-year, $100 million contract extension, making him the third-highest paid player in the NFL after Tom Brady and Peyton Manning. Vick is one of eight NFL players to have signed a $100 million contract and is the only player to have signed two nine-figure deals.
5. Kentucky Speedway paid $1.5 million for a large tract of land near the raceway to help with its traffic flow and parking problems. The track’s inaugural NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in July was marred by several issues, including fans stuck on the highway for more than six hours and an insufficient number of parking spots.
“Hope”: Top Five Reasons That Creativity is the Key to Economic Survival
1. The Atlanta Braves hosted their first-ever tweetup at Turner Field last week. Tickets to the “TweetUp @ the Ted” were $25, and fans who attended received a game ticket, two drink vouchers, admission to the pregame question-and-answer session, and a special T-shirt.
2. Stanford University is collaborating with Google and YouTube to launch an online sports channel for the school’s athletics department. The channel will have original content for the Cardinal’s 35 sports teams, including a football webisode and live football pregame shows.
3. The NFL signed the United Services Automobile Association to become its first Official Military Appreciation Sponsor beginning this season. This is the first known league-wide sponsorship designed specifically for military appreciation. The USAA plans to advertise heavily during NFL games.
4. NASCAR is partnering with Dollar General to promote the Chase for the Sprint Cup, which begins September 18 in Chicago. The “Race In to Win” promotion will run in all 9,000 Dollar General stores and will give one fan the chance to win a trip to Las Vegas for NASCAR’s season-ending awards show.
5. EPL club Arsenal is giving free tickets to its more than 3,000 fans who attended the team’s 8-2 at Manchester United last weekend. The defeat was Arsenal’s worst loss since 1892, and prompted club manager Arsene Wegner to issue a public apology to fans.