Friday, August 14, 2009

Immature Coach = Immature Athletes?

Sports 101 is taking a unique perspective on the sex scandal at the University of Louisville which involves men's basketball coach Rick Pitino. It has been reported that Pitino cheated on his wife. Whether this is true or not, I don't know.

What I do know is that the reaction to a professor cheating on their spouse by an athlete goes unnoticed and unreported in the newspapers. College students are not children. The impact of a coach having extramarital relations with another person should dissapoint them, but this story is not going to affect how hard they play on the court.

Coach Pitino's image has always been suspect, but you don't play college basketball to learn life lessons from a coach. That is what your parents, religious organization, and friends are for.

Sports 101 memo: Coach, how can you look a recruit in the eye and give him an honest commitment to him and his family, when you aren't loyal to your own?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Some Lawn Sales Anybody?

With Rafael Nadal's withdrawal from Wimbledon and the economy being in the pits who would have thought that Wimbledon would be raking in record profits? Not only that, but people are betting on the matches with such ferocity as if a Brit is going to win the tournament....

Well, maybe that is the thinking. With Nadal out Andy Murray is poised to be a champ of the All England Club! But, oh there is the best player in the history in his way, Roddick and Djokovic. With such intrigue, scores of fans are flocking to each match. It is said that Murray's tickets in the second round will be worth thousands of dollars.

Brit's and Tennis fan's can only hope Murray isn't the next Henman!!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Tiger's Back and Marketers Couldn't be Happier

Sports 101: He is a sports marketers dream!

Let's way the pro's and con's of Tiger Woods' return to the PGA Tour. With the exception that other golfers had a shot to win a tournament, there are no cons to Mr. Woods return.

Darren Rovell Reporting:

According to today's Wall Street Journal's Suzanne Vranica Nielson ratings saw a 47 % drop in viewership of golf during Woods' rehab from knee surgery. Also, companies such as Nike, PepsiCo and General Electric are going to be using Woods' return to pioneer their reign atop the sports marketing world.

Gatorade is running a print ad in Sports Illustrated, Pepsi is relaunching its Tiger Focus drink, and NBC announced Tiger's return right before his return to the green.

Woods is certainly a sports marketers dream. He brings back the casual fan to his or her television set and his sponsors are licking their chops eager to launch their campaigns.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Effects of the Economy on the Sports World

Sports 101 knows we are all feeling the pain. Including the sports world.

So, everyone knows how bad our economy is. Nascar is suffering, and the Arena Football League even canceled its season this year. So does the economy only a hit the not as popular sports? The answer is unequivocally no!

The NBA, MLB and the NFL are also feeling its effects. The Los Angeles Lakers have unloaded two players to avoid two million in taxes. The league executives are frightened to take on new player's salaries as was apparent when the NBA trade deadline passed without much action.

With the acception of the New York Yankees, teams are reluctant to pay big money to free agents. Perhaps, Manny Ramirez and other Major League Baseball players will be sorry for not signing deals when the money was on the table. Merchandise sales are down and so are ticket sales at some stadiums. Yahoo! wrote a story about players needing to borrow money from teamates.....what? A million dollars doesn't pay your bills?

The NFL is also perplexed especially because of Al Davis's irrationality. Who pays over 60 million to a cornerback? Players can't expect to that kind of money in today's economy.

Going to a football game for a few hours costs a lot of money. Will fans make up the cost of these insane expenditures by going to the games and buying merchandise? Sports 101 doesn't think so.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Angel's Need to Read the Memo

The "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim" are sliding across a slippery slope. With the departure of Francisco Rodriguez and the release of Garrett Anderson, can one assume that they are still the favorites to win the West?

In the Los Angeles Times this morning, Garrett Anderson's departure, well perhaps, was brought center stage. The Angels did not agree to excersise his option so it looks as like he will departing the team with just about every Angel's offensive record in franchise history. Not only is Sports 101 dissapointed in the Angels, but we think they are stupid. Instead, of offering Anderson a deal for far less money than a lot of other players, they opted to say Garrett, you are out, and we choose an always injured, slower left fielder than you.

Not only is Anderson one of baseball's classiest guys, but he is a professional and absolute role model. This is one guy who you will never hear being discussed in the same sentence as steriods. Baseball players often say that they understand it's a business but that is a load of balogne. If it's a business decision, I bet the PR people and marketing executives with the Angel's are angry too. Unless the Angels replace Anderson with a star the top business managers in Angel land are, well, idiots!!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Super Bowl Sunday and I Have Nothing to Say

Sports 101
is sick of the so-called super bowl hype. How about the super bust? One team has winning history flowing through its veins, while the other has been a disappointment since its inception.

The media wants everything to be a big to-do, and rightfully so. Afterall, that's how they make their money. But, when the media mentioned how happy David Stern would be to see the Lakers play the Celtics in the NBA finals, the media isn't praising the NFL and Roger Goodell's last two teams. And, well that's because nobody cares about Arizona vs. Pittsburgh. Well, Sports 101 doesn't.

The Wall Street Journal carried a story on how the slow down in the US economy hurts the super bowl. Maybe, I don't have I care more about real issues like lay-offs and job cuts, or perhaps I just don't care this year. That said, I will watch the game...but I don't care for either team. Do you?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Who Gets Up for Tennis: Nadal and Federer

One epic tennis final deserves another! Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer are by far the best in the mens game. The last time these two played in a Grand Slam Final was last year's Wimbledon. And, that was an instant classic!

Assuming Nadal can win his Semi Finals match versus a lesser apponent the two will meet in the final on Sunday.

Federer is one Grand Slam final away from tying Pete Sampras's record of 14. How great would it be to see Federer win on Sunday and then magically dethrone owner of clay in France to break the record?

Most likely, that won't happen! I see Federer losing to Nadal on Sunday and once again in France. I see "Fed" breaking the record where Pete did; at the US Open.

But can we crown him the best of all time if he can't win at the French?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Who's Number 1

Who is the Best team from a BCS Bowl?

It certainly wasn't Virginia Tech, Cincinatti, Texas, Ohio State, Penn State or Alabama. So far, the two outright winners of the BCS Bowl games have been USC and Utah.

Which conference is the best this year? Which teams are the best? Let me know.

What do you think and why? The Sports Blog

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Pete Carroll, An Inspiration

If anyone watched "60 Minutes" this past Sunday they got to see more than a day in the life of a football coach. They saw a man bringing together community.

In case you missed it, Pete Carroll, "The Prince of LA" loves the grand stage, but he loves his city as well. Whether that means coaching inner-city "at-risk" youth or the USC football team. It seems that Pete Carrol is on his own personal mission to restore hope.

After listening to Brian Berger's interview with Pete Carroll in 2007, I already knew that there was the Pac-10 and then there was USC; a totally different class. But now it's Pete Carroll's off the field missions that separate him from the rest of college football coaches.

I encourage anyone who hasn't seen the "60 Minutes" profile on Pete Carroll to watch it.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Grinds My Gears

Sorry Family know I love you!

As a baseball fan; what on earth are the Yankees doing? Ok, for the past few years, I had begun to root for the Yankees (only against the Red Sox) but now they are not only steeling talent, but seemingly making it unfair for other teams to compete with them. Of course, since they are a bunch of underachievers, who cares if they have the three highest paid players.

But is there such thing as a financial monopoly in sports? If there is it doesn't necessarily equal success. And, just because you have deap pockets, we all know the Yank's are ridiculously over budget.

On top of the three players who will be making over a half billion dollars, the Yankees are going to be unveiling a new stadium, which by the way they are having trouble selling luxury boxes for. So how does the Steinbrener family recoop its spent money. Well, they are taking on a high-risk, low reward business venture; they won't

So hears what grinds my gears.....the Yankee's are idiots, and actually that makes me happy!

Friday, December 12, 2008

A BCS System That Works, Perhaps?

As we all know, in college football, it is near impossible to have the same playoff system that is so perfect in college basketball. So why don't we stick with the BCS, all the other bowls and add a playoff at the end of it? Ok, so right now there are Four BCS Bowls plus a national championship game.

If you cut out the Championship Bowl and get rid of two teams (this year would be Ohio State and Utah), then you have eight teams in BCS bowls. I suggest the winners face one another in a four team playoff; it's the final four.

Why are Utah and Ohio State undeserving? Ohio State didn't win its conference and Utah needs stiffer competition.

You ask, why even keep those other bowls then. Well money!!! It will keep the bowl committees happy, increase revenue streams at schools and please donors.

My system isn't perfect, but we are told eight teams plus two at-large teams, or the top 16, or some other convoluted system, which is why everyone complains about the BCS to begin with. So just use it!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Sports and the Economy

When the economy goes south, what happens to sports marketing and advertising budgets? They decrease!

This recession proof industry, or so it claims, hasn't seen a recession like this in the modern sports era. Financial institutions, apparel giants, media conglomerates, and every imaginable industry are cutting back. So what makes sport immune to our economic meltdown?

Well, nothing! Modern sports venues are sponsored by the likes of Gillette, Lucas Oil, Citizens Bank, Wachovia, Target, McDonalds, and Staples to name just a few. But as these company's profits and shares of stock plummet, will they continue to sponsor sports arenas when money can be spent on driving consumers to purchase products?

I believe company's are going to be taking a long, hard look at where they are spending money. Is it worth forking over cash indescrimantly? And, who will have to pay for the losses in revenue that the owner sees. Will it be the fans, the players, or the entertainment experience? The sports industry thinks its recession proof, right? Well, who has taken a hit so far from this meltdown? The housing industry, financials, reatailers, consumers, the automobile industry have all taken blow after blow to the abdomen. Well, guess what there may be a trickle down affect.

I hope I am wrong!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

NFL Outlook

Going into the season most fans thought we'd see Indianapolis and New England battle it out for the AFC championship. The NFC with all its star power looked as if the Cowboys were going to the super bowl.

When Tom Brady's knee crumbled in the first game of the season as he was throwing the ball so did New England's chances of winning the AFC. Even with mastermind coach Bill Belichick calling the shots, star running back Laurency Maroney and dirtiest, hardest hitting safety Rodney Harrison are hobbled by injuries. It looks like all the coaching in the world can't get you to the Superbowl.

For the Idianapolis Colts, the whole season (to this point) has been a mediocre. With superstar quarterback Peyton Manning having trouble with his knee and the defense not playing well, Colts fans must be scratching their heads.

So who is the AFC's Frontrunner? Well it's not the Chargers, Colts, Jaguars, Broncos, Steelers (well maybe) or any other usual suspects. Which team is undeafeated and winning games the old fashioned way; with great defense and few mistakes. That's right the only undefeated team in the NFL is that "Music City Miracle Team" with that same coach.

Now, the NFC looks like an easy call to me. Can you say repeat? The Giants defense is dominating, their running back is a freight train, the quarterback is accurate and has great wideouts. And, is their a great coach in New York? I don't think so....

Conclusion: While one league is struggling with its identity, the other has a clear cut favorite and it is talent that is winning out. Or, is it coaching?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

BCS System Works: That's Right!

Ok, I get it!

No one is happy about this BCS National Championship System. After all, wasn't it our president to be who said if he could change anything about sports, he would create a 8 team playoff system.

But, hearing this from such a smart, intelligent, speaker made me realize just how much the BCS works. While most college football pundits agree that the BCS System should be abandoned, they all know that in order for that to occur fans would have to stop watching the game and cheering for their team.

And, if you are a BCS school, conference president, or television station, it's a cash cow that has no end in sight. Why would television stations, BCS schools, sports writers and conferences want to change such a hush....hush (profitable system) from lining their wallets with greenbacks.

Columnist Bill Plaschke of the Los Angeles Times says, "Even those longtime BCS critics like myself have to finally admit that the imperfect system has perfectly transformed the sport from a Saturday afternoon cookout to a national obsession."

Not only is the BCS a national obsession, but it gets free press; and free promotion is every company's dream. Every team plays every game like it may be their last best hope to be champions. The BCS keeps fans on the edge of their seat for the entire season.

The Bowl Chapionship Series is pure gold, and a sports marketers dream.