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Track & field audience strong for NBC outlets

Tonight in Unpacks: NBC saw some impressive viewership for the World Athletics Championships in Oregon, delivering some of the network’s best track & field audience numbers outside of the Olympics or Team USA Trials.

Other headlines:

  • Craftsman likely next title sponsor for NASCAR Truck Series
  • Trump, LIV Golf making headlines with event in NYC market
  • Candy Digital partners with Cal Ripken Jr.
  • Op-ed: Athletes need to be smart about NIL
  • StubHub closing San Francisco, Shanghai offices

Miss this morning’s Buzzcast? SBJ’s Abe Madkour looks at how LIV Golf and the Subway Series are in the spotlight in the New York market. Also, Camping World getting set to move on from NASCAR’s Truck Series and MLB eyeing a fan loyalty program.

the World Athletics Championships averaged 834,000 viewers for 43 hours of coverage across NBC, USA Network and CNBC this year from Eugene, pray., marking the best average for the global track & field event since 2015 (only four NBC windows; 1.16 million).

There were seven windows on the NBC broadcast TV channel this year, including four in primetime, with all of those windows averaging 1.93 million viewers, which is the best NBC average for the event in 15 years (2.08 million). The best figure was the final night of competition this past Sunday, with NBC drawing 2.36 million viewers from 9:00-11:06pm ET. Outside of the Olympics and Team USA Trialsthat is the best track & field figure for NBC in 26 years.

USA Net’s best figure came on July 22, with Friday primetime coverage averaging 783,000 viewers, which is the second-best track & field telecast on cable TV in the US, excluding Olympics and Team USA Trials. No. 1 on that list is the 2018 Indoor Championshipswhich averaged 1.31 million on NBCSN and had a lead-in from the PyeongChang Olympics.

This event had 109.1 million total impressions on NBC Sports social media accounts, as well as 44.3 million video views. Allyson Felix‘s leg of the mixed 4x400m relay (9 million viewers) was the most-viewed NBC Olympics TikTok video since the Beijing Winter Games. Sydney McLaughlin has the most video views among all Team USA competitors on the NBC Sports Youtube account (3.87 million), while Noah Lyles led all male competitors (3.03 million).

CampingWorld is ending its longtime NASCAR Truck Series entitlement after this season, according to a social media post Wednesday night from the company’s Chair & CEO Marcus Lemonisand NASCAR is already well down the line with a potential replacement, sources tell SBJ’s Adam Stern.

The company has been title sponsor of NASCAR’s Truck Series for more than a decade, but SBJ first reported in June that the future of the $5 million annual deal was uncertain and that no renewal agreement had been reached.

The leading candidate to replace Camping World is believed to be Craftsmanthe tool brand that was the original sponsor of the Truck Series when it debuted — first as a presenting sponsor in 1995 and then title sponsor in 1996. Craftsman served as title sponsor until the end of the 2008 season.

With LIV Golf is making its New York debut this week at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster. Here are some of the headlines from around SBJ publications today:

CandyDigital has reached a new multiyear digital collectibles partnership with Cal Ripken Jr.. in what will be the first set of licensed NFTs for The Iron Man, reports SportTechie’s Andrew Cohen.

the Cal Ripken Jr. Rookie Collection will be released Aug. 23 on Candy Digital’s marketplace and is dedicated toward highlighting specific moments from the 1982 season, when Ripken won AL Rookie of the Year. The NFTs include footage and audio narration from Ripken Jr. that Candy Digital recorded while interviewing him at Camden Yards earlier this year.

“This new medium really allows athletes to tell their story and connect with a new audience to tell stories about games, some artifacts, and really bring their story to a whole new generation,” said Candy Digital Head of Partnerships matt novogratz. “That was a really special day for us to hang out in an empty Camden Yards with one of the all-time greats.”

The deal with Ripken is separate from one that Candy Digital signed last week with the Baseball Hall of Fame to become its official licensee of digital collectibles under a new product line called the Baseball Legends Series.

The Cal Ripken Jr. Rookie Collection will be released Aug. 23 on Candy Digital’s marketplace

Tonight’s op-ed comes from Danny Harriswho is managing partner and CEO of GUICE Wealth Management. Harris looks at NIL after one year in the books.

“The change is here. It isn’t going anywhere. The positive change has been the life-altering deals college athletes have been able to sign. While some college recruits have reportedly signed deals north of a million dollars, others have not figured out how to best utilize their NIL. The two words every athlete should learn: 1. Monetize 2. Economize. Knowing how to best understand your NIL value will help you navigate what NIL is and how to best use it.”

For the full contribution, click here.

In this week’s SBJMarketing newsletter, Terry Lefton digs into:

  • Genesco winning an agency shootout for the Lowe’s NFL business
  • MLB Players Inc.. eyeing a third straight year of record growth
  • New Balance becoming an official MLB licensed
  • Karin Timpone working on plans for an MLB fan loyalty program
  • Sources saying MLB is close to a league CBD sponsorship deal

  • stubhub CEO Eric Baker today informed his company’s employees in an internal memo that the company’s San Francisco and Shanghai offices would be closed by the end of 2022, and the majority of employees working in those two locations are being let go, reports SBJ’s Brett McCormick.
  • It’s Throwback Thursday time, and with training camps getting underway, two NFL vets-turned-analysts share with SBJ some of their experiences from the grueling ritual to prepare for a new season in the fall.
  • Fox Sports exec mike mulvihill have some interesting TV audience nuggets today. During the first half of 2022, pay TV distribution was down 7%. However, MLB RSN viewership has been flat. Total-day viewing for FS1 was +3%, while ESPN was +6% and ESPN2 was +9%. For all sports viewing (excluding the Winter Olympics), viewership was +12% compared to the first half of 2021. Including the Olympics, viewership was +24%.

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