FOX SPORTS CREATES DIGITAL PROGRAMMING UNIT
FOX Sports Digital Entertainment Unveils Five Internet-Exclusive Mid-Day Programs for Webcast on FOXSports.com on MSN
“Lunchtime is the New Prime Time!”
New York & Los Angeles – FOX Sports, America’s No. 1 sports television network, today announced that it has established FOX Sports Digital Entertainment, a unit commissioned to create Internet-only programming available exclusively via FOXSports.com on MSN (msn.foxsports.com). The announcement was made today by David Hill, FOX Sports Chairman and Executive Producer. The group’s maiden effort includes five break-out shows webcast weekdays on msn.foxsports.com at 1:00 PM ET beginning Monday, Sept. 14 under the banner “Lunch – w/ Benefits.”
As of July 1, 2009, FOXSports.com on MSN, the third most–visited sports Web site with approximately 14.5 million average monthly users, reestablished its corporate home within Fox Networks Group, and specifically under Hill at FOX Sports. This move has allowed for the creation of a distinctive online experience and has improved the multi-platform synergy between the digital and broadcast worlds. Overseeing FOX Sports Digital Entertainment (FSDE) and reporting to Hill is Jeff Husvar, Senior Vice President & General Manager of FOXSports.com on MSN.
“Original programming on the Internet is set to explode as the Web transitions from being controlled by engineers to being run by producers, much the same way television did in the 1950s,” said Hill. “We’ve established FOX Sports Digital Entertainment to develop a variety of programs that appeal to hardcore sports fans, many of whom turn to their computers for entertainment and information as they lunch. Not every show is going to click its first time out, but we’re going probe and push to see where we can go, and how far.”
FOXSports.com on MSN generates its greatest concentration of visitors, 78%, on weekdays between 9:00 AM and 1:00 PM, establishing its own version of prime time. This ultimately led to the Lunch – w/ Benefits tagline, “Lunchtime is the New Prime Time.”
Reporting to Husvar within the FSDE unit are FOX Sports’ George Greenberg and Ed Bunnell, Vice President, Programming, FOXSports.com on MSN. Veteran FOX sports producer Judy Hoang serves as FSDE’s Coordinating Producer, guiding production of all five shows. The first five Lunch w/ Benefits shows are:
Debuting on Monday, Sept. 14 is THE AFTERPARTY WITH JAY GLAZER (live/tape). Each week during the NFL season, FOX NFL SUNDAY/FOXSports.com on MSN insider Jay Glazer uses his unparalleled access to current players to hook up with the five best performers from the previous day’s action via Internet camera or phone. Glazer’s free-flowing, unstructured conversations run the gamut from specific on-field performances to the light-hearted and personal. THE AFTERPARTY WITH JAY GLAZER is produced by Joel Santos.
On Tuesday, Sept. 15 comes the premiere of COACHSPEAK WITH BRIAN BILLICK, hosted by Super Bowl-winning head coach and NFL on FOX game analyst Brian Billick. Each Tuesday during the season Billick is joined by a group of five NFL head coaches to discuss the games Xs and Os. It is a show for coaches by coaches that only hardcore football fans will appreciate. Current head coaches scheduled to appear include: Jack Del Rio – Jacksonville Jaguars; John Fox – Carolina Panthers; John Harbaugh – Baltimore Ravens; Mike McCarthy – Green Bay Packers; Wade Phillips – Dallas Cowboys; Rex Ryan – New York Jets; Jim Schwartz – Detroit Lions; Mike Singletary – San Francisco 49ers; Mike Smith – Atlanta Falcons and Jim Zorn – Washington Redskins. COACHSPEAK WITH BRIAN BILLICK is produced by Jeremy Berg.
THE COLLEGE EXPERIMENT, an irreverent, non-traditional college football review and preview show, premieres on Wednesday, Sept. 16. Brian DeCloux is the producer of THE COLLEGE EXPERIMENT.
CUBED, which premieres on Thursday, Sept. 17 (live), is more of a pop culture show than a sports show. Designed especially for men, it’s perhaps best described as The Office meets shock-jock radio. The setting is of three male worker drones sitting in their cubicles riffing about current events, sex, sports and everything else guys talk about – nothing is off limits. Mixed throughout the show will be a variety of irreverent skits and interviews, so the easily offended are advised to surf elsewhere. CUBED is produced by Bill Richards.
Each week, FOX NFL SUNDAY writers and personalities conduct a conference telephone call to discuss topics for the coming week’s pregame show. Using web-generated audio and video, INSIDE CALL, which debuts Friday, Sept. 18, allows viewers to spy on the call, peeking in on what analysts Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, Michael Strahan and Jimmy Johnson are like away from the set. Hear their candid comments about players, coaches and current NFL events as they prep for Sunday’s show and bust chops. INSIDE CALL is produced by Jacob Jolivette.
About FOXSports.com on MSN
FOXSports.com on MSN is a leading sports Website that delivers exclusive commentary and sports video, breaking news, real-time stats and fantasy games to more than 14 million unique visitors every month. FOXSports.com is the online extension of FOX Sports television coverage and is the exclusive provider of sports content for MSN.com in the US, located at http://msn.foxsports.com. FOXSports.com is an industry leader in the delivery of sports content to mobile devices. Sports fans can access the latest scores, stats and news while on the go from FOXSports.com on MSN Mobile, simply by entering FOXSports.com on their Web-enabled mobile phones, or texting SPORTS to either 36977 or FOXSP.
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