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NEWS REAL

• FIFA has postponed plans to expand the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams for the 2022 event in Qatar. The plan is still being considered for the 2026 World Cup, which will be staged in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. According to FIFA, “(There was not enough) time for a detailed assessment of the potential logistical impact.” The World Cup is scheduled for Nov. 21-Dec. 18, 2022.

• The NFL and NFL Players Association have unveiled two joint agreements that are intended to “support further resources directed to address pain management and behavioral health.” Full story here.

• The U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, and social impact education innovator EVERFI, Inc. have oined the students of Santee Elementary School in San Jose to launch The Compassion Project for the 2019-2020 school year, described as a “national nonprofit dedicated to providing compassion education to elementary school students across the U.S.”

• The U.S. Golf Association has aligned with Marvel Entertainment to create exclusive golf education products to “engage junior golfers on the essential elements to learning the game." Scheduled to launch in June at the 2019 U.S. Open Championship at Pebble Beach, the collaboration features printed and digital comic books with many of Marvel’s super heroes The story follows Tony Stark (Iron Man) and other Avengers as they teach the next generation of Marvel Super Heroes about golf. Limited-edition Marvel-themed golf posters will be distributed (while supplies last) at the Junior Experience at the 2019 U.S. Open.

• Major League Lacrosse has signed a deal with Anheuser-Busch to have its Bud Light brand become the official beer partner for the 2019 MLL All-Star Game, being played in Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD on July 27. The deal includes “prominent signage on the playing field, fan zone activation and various on-site promotions at several sports bars and retail locations in the Greater Annapolis area leading up to the All-Star Game.”

• Stating that “we are continually seeking opportunities to evolve our product offerings,’ Kohl’s has signed an exclusive long-term alliance with Fanatics, a global leader in licensed sports merchandise with the addition of “hundreds of thousands of items.” Full story here.

• Pete Frates and Pat Quinn, co-founders of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, have launched with The ALS Assn. the 5th anniversary of “Challenge Me” with a “new call to action to reignite the passion and generosity of the millions of people who dumped ice water on their heads in the summer of 2014.” 

POLL POSITION

U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named the 23 players who will represent the U.S. in France and seek to defend their FIFA Women’s World Cup crown (July 7-Aug.7).

GOALKEEPERS

Adrianna Franch* (Portland Thorns FC), Ashlyn Harris** (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher** (Chicago Red Stars)
DEFENDERS
Abby Dahlkemper* (NC Courage), Tierna Davidson* (Chicago Red Stars), Crystal Dunn* (NC Courage), Ali Krieger*** (Orlando Pride), Kelley O’Hara*** (Utah Royals FC), Becky Sauerbrunn*** (Utah Royals FC), Emily Sonnett* (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS
Morgan Brian** (Chicago Red Stars), Julie Ertz** (Chicago Red Stars), Lindsey Horan* (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle* (Washington Spirit), Allie Long* (Reign FC), Samantha Mewis* (NC Courage)
FORWARDS
Tobin Heath*** (Portland Thorns FC), Carli Lloyd**** (Sky Blue FC), Jessica McDonald* (NC Courage), Alex Morgan*** (Orlando Pride), Christen Press** (Utah Royals FC), Mallory Pugh* (Washington Spirit), Megan Rapinoe*** (Reign FC)
* First Women’s World Cup
** Second Women’s World Cup
*** Third Women’s World Cup
**** Fourth Women’s World Cup

KEEPING SCORE

Luka Dončić, Trae Young Head NBA All-Rookie Team
Dallas Mavericks guard-forward Luka Dončić and Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young have been unanimously selected to the 2018-19 NBA All-Rookie First Team.

Dončić and Young both received NBA All-Rookie First Team votes on all 100 ballots to finish with 200 points each.  They are joined on the NBA All-Rookie First Team by Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (195 points; 95 First Team votes), Memphis Grizzlies forward-center Jaren Jackson Jr. (159 points; 60 First Team votes) and Sacramento Kings forward Marvin Bagley III (156 points; 56 First Team votes).

The 2018-19 NBA All-Rookie Second Team includes LA Clippers guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (138 points), Cleveland Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton (132), Clippers guard Landry Shamet (85), New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (77) and Hawks guard Kevin Huerter (45).

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office May 17-19
1. John Wick 3 $57M
2. Avengers: Endgame $29.4M
3. Pokemon Detective Pikachu $24.8M
4. A Dog’s Journey $8M
5. The Hustle $6M
6. The Intruder $4M
7. Long Shot $3.4M
8,. The Sun Is Also A Star $2.6M
9. Poms $2M
10. Uglydolls $1.6M
Source: Box Office Mojo

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COLLEGE

BodyArmor Into NCAA
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
Notre Dame Builds Brand
Cancer Drives Home
Men's Hoops Are 'Toxic'

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
Channel Chasers

NFL UK 2019
• Oct. 6 Chicago Bears v Oakland Raiders Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 13 Carolina Panthers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 27  Cincinnati Bengals v Los Angeles Rams Wembley Stadium
• Nov. 3 Houston Texans v Jacksonville Jaguars Wembley Stadium

NFL Mexico 2019
• Nov. 18 Kansas City  Chiefs v Los Angeles Chargers Mexico City Estadio Azteca (ESPN Monday Night Football).

Thursday
Apr122018

Nike Unveils New Jerseys, Alliance At WNBA Draft Presented By State Farm

By Barry Janoff

April 12, 2018: When the 2018 WNBA Draft presented by State Farm commenced Thursday night in Nike Headquarters NY, (ESPN2, 7 PM ET), a number of top prospects were introduced not only to the world of pro sports but also to the world of pro sports marketing.

In addition to State Farm and host Nike, among the WNBA partners activating around the Draft included Fanatics, New Era, SAP and Verizon, as well as the NBA Store on 5th Ave.

During Round 1, State Farm and Nike were most prominent.

As presenting partner, State Farm received logo placement in the official WNBA Draft logo and inclusion on marketing materials generated by WNBAE.

On ESPN 2, State Farm has four 30-second spots and two five-second billboards, plus on-air graphics and on-site signage.

State Farm will also receive run-of-site banner ads on WNBA.com and present the WNBA Draft section at WNBA.com.
 
Nike is now in its first season as WNBA official on-court apparel provider (taking over from adidas, as it did this past season in the NBA). The company signed an eight-year deal in 2015, valued at $1 billion by industry analysts, which took effect this season.

The deal also includes the NBA’s Gatorade Developmental League.

Kelsey Plum, last year’s No. 1 overall WNBA draft pick, signed with Nike after being selected by the then-San Antonio Stars, since relocated to Las Vegas as the Aces.

This year’s overall No. 1 pick was A’ja Wilson (South Carolina), also drafted by the Aces.

Other first round selections included No. 2 Kelsey Mitchell (Ohio State, Indian Fever), No. 3 Diamond DeShields (Tennessee, Chicago Sky), No. 4 Gabby Williams (UConn, Chicago Sky), No. 5 Jordin Canada (UCLA, Seattle Storm), No. 6 Azurá Stevens (UConn, Dallas Wings), No. 7 Ariel Atkins (Texas, Washington Mystics), No. 8 Victoria Vivians (Mississippi State, Indiana Fever), No. 9 Lexie Brown (Duke, Connecticut Sun) and No. 10 Kia Nurse (UConn, New York Liberty).

Each player drafted received a Nike Icon Edition jersey, presented to them by WNBA president Lisa Borders.
 
On Friday (April 12), Nike will release its line of WNBA fan apparel on WNBAStore.com.

The brand previewed the uniforms in a video on social media. The jerseys feature the Nike Swoosh, Verizon’s logo as a league-wide sponsor and each team’s jersey-front sponsor.

Among the 2018 team sponsors (to date):

• Chicago Sky: University of Chicago Medicine

• Connecticut Sun: Mohegan Sun Casino (franchise owner)

• Dallas Wings: American Fidelity

• Indiana Fever: Finish Line

• Los Angeles Sparks: EquiTrust

• Minnesota Lynx: Mayo Clinic

• New York Liberty: DraftKings

• Phoenix Mercury: Talking Stick Resort and Casino

• Seattle Storm: Swedish Medical Center

New Era has produced its first WNBA Draft cap design for the 2018 event.

SAP will air a 30-second spot and have signage in the venue.

SAP is also the presenting partner for the WNBA stats section on WNBA.com.
 
Verizon will have signage on-site and conduct demonstrations from a WNBAE-designated area in Nike headquarters.

On Friday, in the NBA Store, Nike and Fanatics will unveil and promote fan apparel, supported by banner ads on WNBA.com and posts on social media.

Rounds 2 and 3 will air on ESPNU.

The 2018 WNBA season begins May 18.

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