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POLL POSITION
Sports Marketer of the Year
 
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QUICK HITS

• Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Finalists Class of 2018: Ray Allen, Maurice Cheeks, Charles “Lefty” Driesell, Hugh Evans, Grant Hill, Jason Kidd, Steve Nash, Rudy Tomjanovich, Chris Webber, Kim Mulkey, Katie Smith, Tina Thompson, Wayland Baptist University. Class of 2018 will be named during the NCAA Men’s Final Four weekend in San Antonio March 31-April 2.

• Serena Williams, who said her first auto purchase was a while Lincoln Navigator SUV she named “Ginger,” has signed to become an official spokesperson for the brand. A social media-based marketing campaign includes videos of Williams talking about and driving the 2018 Navigator, with ongoing videos to follow. “Partnering with a brand like Navigator comes from a genuine place,” she said in the first video. “Let’s just be honest: Serena Williams needs to be in the new Navigator.”

• The Smashing Pumpkins unveil 'Shiny And Oh So Bright' 36-city tour, their first tour in nearly 20 years, with founding members Billy Corgan, Jimmy Chamberlin, James Iha. Produced by Live Nation.

KEEPING SCORE

Most Exciting Sports Worldwide
1. Athletics (i.e. Olympics) 47% Very/Quite Exciting
2. Tennis 43%
3. Football (soccer) 43%
4. Rugby 41%
5. Gymnastics 36%
6. Boxing 32%
7. Formula 1 32%
8. Swimming 26%
9. Horse Racing 25%
10. Cycling 25%

Most Boring Sports Worldwide
1. Golf 70% Very/Quite Boring
2. U.S. Football 59%
3. Cricket 58%
4. Darts 58%
5. Snooker 57%
6. Basketball 52%
7. Horse Racing 52%
8. Cycling 50%
9. Formula 1 49%
10. Boxing 46%

Poll from YouGov.com

BUY SELL

Most-Watched Winter Olympics in U.S. TV History
1. Lillehammer, 1994* 204 million
2. Vancouver, 2010 190 million
3. Salt Lake City, 2002 187 million
T4. Torino, 2006 184 million
T4. Albertville, 1992 184 million
T4. Nagano, 1998 184 million
* Nancy Kerrigan/Tonya Harding incident

Source NBC Sports

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State Farm: Getting Older Winter Games Ads Below

COLLEGE

CFB Title Games '21-24
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
NCAA: More Health $$$
Cancer Drives Home
NCAA Reballs Madness

Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Wednesday
Jan162013

Infiniti Connects With ESPN, College Coaches For March Madness Marketing

Special to NYSportsJournalism.com

January 16, 2013: Infiniti likes the Big Dance so much that it is retuning for third year.

The automaker has signed with the NCAA, ESPN and the National Association of Basketball Coaches as the sponsor of the "Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge" for the third year.

The program, which expanded last year, pits 48 NABC coaches from the nation's top NCAA Division I men's basketball programs in a fan-vote challenge, with the total Infiniti contribution reaching $335,000.

Infiniti, an official corporate partner of the NCAA, said it would make a $100,000 donation to a charity designated by the winning coach.

The Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge will be promoted each week through a wide range of media, including the ESPN Game of the Week, Facebook and other social media.

ESPN's activation launches with four integrated content pieces narrated by Duke head basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski at ESPN.com/Infiniti. ESPN CreativeWorks worked with TBA\Chiat\Day New York for the pieces.

The first piece premiered during the Tennessee vs. Kentucky game on ESPN. They will run during about 14 college hoops games on ESPN this season from through early March. (See coach segments here.)

Infiniti will use this campaign and other March Madness activation to support the 2014 Q50, due to hit showrooms this summer, and other 2014 releases.

"Last season, Infiniti was pleased to present Ohio State University men's basketball coach Thad Matta a $100,000 check for his charity, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio, for winning the annual "Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge," Ben Poore, vp for Infiniti Americas, said in a statement. "We know Coach Matta will plan on defending his title, but the 47 other coaches and their fans are going to put up a great fight."

Among the participating coaches and their charities are: Krzyzewski (Emily Krzyzewski Center); John Beilein, Michigan (The St. Louis Center); Sean Miller, Arizona (Ronald McDonald House Charities, Southern Arizona); and Bill Self, Kansas (Assists Foundation).

All 48 coaches' charities are guaranteed at least $5,000 from Infiniti.
 
Fan participation at a dedicate Web site, which began this week, will determine the ultimate winner over an eight-week period.Coaches will vie against each other and be narrowed down by brackets similar to March Madness.  Fans can vote for one coach per region per day. The winning coach will be announced March 11.  (Full details here.)

"College basketball coaches across America contribute in so many ways throughout the year for numerous national and local charitable organizations as well as community projects and initiatives," said Jim Haney, executive director for the NABC,  said in a statement. "The Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge enables college basketball fans to team with these outstanding coaches in providing significant financial support and awareness for so many worthy programs."

"We're also looking forward to joining fans across the nation for a great season of outstanding competition on the courts."

According to Infiniti's Poore, "Infiniti is proud to once again support NCAA Division I men's basketball and the NABC and their outstanding efforts in raising funds and support for their designated charities. We're also looking forward to joining fans across the nation for a great season of outstanding competition on the courts."

NCAA corporate champions are AT&T, Capital One and Coca-Cola.

NCAA corporate partners are Allstate, Buick, Enterprise, Infiniti, LG, Lowe's, Nabisco, Northwest Mutual, Reese's Unilever and UPS.

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