A collection of thoughts from the Complete SET team as well as general industry story lines

Levi’s Stadium Crowd “Bigger And Louder” For Regular-Season Debut

The 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium last night made its regular-season debut in a 28-20 home loss to the Bears, culminating a “half a decade of planning, a couple years of construction and several warm-up events.” The game drew a crowd of 70,799, “which was bigger and louder than it had be…

Twitter Me This….

Montreal Gazette’s Dave Stubbs : “#Habs golf tourney this am. Going to pay Youppi! a few bucks to waste the Dixieland band that drowns out the clubhouse-steps interviews.”
FS1’s CJ Nitkowski : “A @Delta flight attendant just announced the…

Today’s Events….

The Tiger Woods Foundation will host a news conference on the future of the World Challenge, including title sponsorship of the 16-year-old event, at Isleworth Golf & Country Club in Windermere, Fla., at 11:30am ET.

Sources: Wild Investor Phil Falcone Eyes Islanders Ownership

Sources said that Wild investor Phil Falcone “has been mulling selling his minority ownership” in the team “with the goal of becoming an eventual owner of the Islanders.” Falcone “would invest in the Islanders alongside friend and fellow Harvard alum Jon Ledecky ,” who last mo…

Tour Championship Attendance Rebounds Saturday After Dip

Attendance for the PGA Tour Championship at East Lake was “down slightly in the first two rounds from a year ago” but was up 3% Saturday. Tournament Exec Dir Tom Clark said that he “anticipated a similar increase in Sunday’s numbers.” Clark: “Ticket wise, in the past not having…

CBS Ramping Up Promos For Mayweather-Maidana PPV Fight

The ramp up for Saturday night’s Floyd Mayweather – Marcos Maidana Showtime PPV card hits full stride during CBS’ afternoon college football lineup, with multiple 10-second promo spots slated to air on CBS Sports Network and at least one running during the 3:30pm ET game featuring Georg…

Buzzer Beaters….

A federal judge “has thrown out a class-action lawsuit” accusing the USTA of “underpaying the hundreds of umpires who work the U.S. Open each year” ( REUTERS, 9/12 ).

MLS expansion club Orlando City SC “has reinstated the Iron Lion Firm as a recognized supporters’ group, seemingl…

Tweet Pic Of The Day….

Social media consultant Alex Cervasio posted this collage, showing different views from Nike’s rooftop Hospitality Lounge set up for the FIBA World Cup in Madrid.

Daily Download….

As part of its “Count on Countdown” campaign promoting the “Sunday NFL Countdown” show, ESPN is rolling out this spot featuring the Tattoo Fantasy League of Omaha, Neb.

Daily Digit….

61% – Percentage of 544 adults polled by Langer Research Associates for ESPN that felt the NFL did not “fully investigate” the Ray Rice domestic assault. A majority – 55% – said that they did not believe NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell ‘s statement that “no one…

They Say It’s Our Birthday! The Daily Turns 20!

On September 12, 1994, THE DAILY delivered its first issue to the sports industry. Our headlines on that Monday? MLB’s labor strike hit day 12; Fox Sports announced a deal with the NHL; The Hugh Culverhouse estate said the Bucs were not for sale and Andre Agassi ‘s wi…

Top Ten….All The Single Ladies

Last night’s Top Ten list was “Top Ten Reasons You’re Still Single.” Letterman said, “For the first time more than half of the American adult population is single. More and more people realizing that for one reason or another they don’t need to be in a relationship&…

NCAA Officials Assessing Pittsburgh As Women’s Final Four Host

Members of the NCAA women’s basketball championship committee and the NCAA site selection committee are visiting Pittsburgh this week to “determine the city’s ability to be the host of a Final Four.” The officials are “getting a feel for the proximity” of Consol Energy Center to “attractio…

Final Jeopardy!

Last night’s “Final Jeopardy!” category was “Academy Awards.”

“1 of the 2 movies in the last 30 years, one a drama & one a comedy, to win Oscars for Best Actor & Best Actress.”

Back Pages….

The Morning Buzz offers today’s back page sports covers from some of the nation’s major metropolitan tabloids:

N.Y. Post
N.Y. Daily News Newsday Philadelphia Daily News Boston Herald

The Forgotten Four, forgotten no more

The Forgotten Four, to be forgotten no more
The Forgotten Four, to be forgotten no more. A profile of the four African American athletes who broke the color barrier in professional football
Earlier this month EPIX hosted a South Florida screening of their new sports documentary, The Forgotten Four. In a room that held Hall of Fame players, family members, and representatives from the NAACP, the Black Archives and other like-minded organizations; their was a self-admitted lack of knowledge on the subject. The aptly named film explores a lost part of football history. First account testimony, select player interviews and archived footage delve into the story of the four African-American athletes -Kenny Washington, Woody Strode, Marion Motley and Bill Willis – that broke the color barrier in professional football in 1946. This was one year before Jackie Robinson and Branch Rickey did the same for Major League Baseball.
Many attending, which included Miami Dolphins greats Nat Moore, Larry Little and Mercury Morris, wanted the Forgotten Four to be forgotten no more. “Every young athlete, football or otherwise, should watch this film…to be aware of these heroes,” said Hall of Fame lineman Larry Little. The sentiment was echoed by all former players in attendance; “You have to learn where you came from so you can move forward,” added Mercury Morris.
The 60 minute documentary is narrated by Tony Award winner Jeffrey Wright and produced by 52 time Emmy award winner Ross Greenburg. Countless football legends provide commentary in the film, including: Don Shula, Bob Gain, Sherman Howard, Jim Hardy, George Taliaferro and more. As part of the roll-out prior to the mid-September release, EPIX and the NFL hosted many other local screenings in NFL markets. A panel of relevant former NFL players shared their thoughts in a town-hall setting – this model was followed in South Florida and at the screenings across the country “EPIX is pleased to work with the National Football League to bring the story of these trailblazers in civil rights and professional sports to a new national audience,” Mark Greenberg, President and CEO of EPIX said in a release. “We believe The Forgotten Four presents an insightful and informative account of the profound impact these courageous men had on the sport.”
Also on the strategic partnership with the league: Producer Wes Smith, told that “The NFL liked what we were doing, and their buy-in was an added bonus…Being able [to use the league] shield gives the documentary even more credibility…if you have the right project and the right partners…things can happen pretty quickly.”
Forgotten Four: The Integration of Pro Football, premieres on EPIX at September 23 at 8PM ET
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Caviezel brings authenticity to coaching role in When the Game Stands Tall

Caviezel brings authenticity to coaching role in When the Game Stands Tall

The sports drama When the Game Stands Tall opened in theatres last week. It stars Jim Caviezel who is best known for roles in The Passion of The Christ, The Count of Monte Cristo, and the CBS crime drama Person of Interest.
In the film Caviezel plays De La Salle High School head football coach, Bob Ladouceur, who led the Spartans on an unprecedented record of 151 straight wins. The film chronicles the season when the team breaks the streak – they suffer their first loss in over ten seasons – it is a powerful and moving character study with “authentic messages” as Caviezel told me in our interview. Authenticity is a something Caviezel would repeatedly bring up as the distinguishing factor between this film and the countless sports movies that miss the boat. He explained that many sports films get it wrong due to inaccurate game depictions, overdone sports clichés, or simply lacking the real spirit of the game.
Caviezel knows what it means to be authentic in sports – as he is no stranger to athletics himself- whether on film or off. Caviezel’s father played college basketball at UCLA under the legendary Coach John Wooden. Caviezel’s brother-in-law is Scott Linehan the passing game coordinator for the Dallas Cowboys, Caviezel himself was a basketball standout at John F. Kennedy High School and went on to play in college (a severe injury prematurely ended his career). In fact, Caviezel is routinely invited to coach at Five Star Basketball camp which is the nation’s premiere summer camp for youth basketball talent development (for example: Five-Star alums include Michael Jordan, Grant Hill, LeBron James and Kevin Durant). If personal history was not enough to bring authenticity to the role – Caviezel also had played the title role in Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius, a biopic on the golf icon.
“What I look for in roles is authenticity,” Caviezel reminded me towards the end of our conversation. “Believability is everything. I remember looking at film when I was doing the Bobby Jones movie, and the golf instructor told me, ‘If you are looking at that grip when you pick up that golf club, everybody is going to know you don’t play that game.’”
He brought that level of attention to detail when preparing for the Ladouceur role. “I got to go in the locker room and literally tape the conversations,” he added. “What I was fascinated about him [Ladouceur] was that he didn’t say much. I knew if I could get that down I might have a chance. I was at checks and balances with him all the time.”
“What he was about was getting young men to be men of virtue, courage, to be dependent on one another,” explained Caviezel. “At one point he said, ‘We’re not asking you to play a perfect game; what we’re asking of you, and what you should be asking of yourselves, is to give a perfect effort on every play from snap to whistle.’”
Caviezel was more impressed on how Coach Ladouceur taught his players to be good men rather than focus on the winning. To Ladoucer, football was just a game. The film shows this contrast between the win at all costs mentality that often consumes coaches and Ladouceur’s alternative emphasis on uplifting messages.
“The [film] focus is not on winning but on virtues,” Caviezel added. “Turning these boys from boys to men, and from those virtues, courage, all of the adversity that they have to undergo, that one has to in life, that that focus on the love aspect, I think, is a universal message that will transcend to all people regardless of whether they play a sport or not.”
If Caviezel and the film captures this- it can’t get any more authentic than that.
When the Game Stands Tall production budget was $15 million. On opening weekend it earned $8,381,509.

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Varriale — a Modern Day Sports Lawyer

Varriale — a Modern Day Sports Lawyer
Carla Varriale is the quintessential modern sports lawyer. The bulk of her practice centers on sports law. And she teaches
at Columbia University’s School of Continuing Education.A partner at Manhattan-based Havkins, Rosenfeld, Ritzert &
Varriale, Varriale has several core clients, who keep her more than busy. Among them are the New York Mets. And if she wants to grow her practice, all she does is turn to her imagination.That imagination, for example, led her to teach a class at Columbia this summer that honed in on debate in New York State around making Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) legal. Varriale has become de facto expert on the subject. Creativity in the sports law world should be recognized, which is one of many reasons she is the subject of the following interview, conducted by contributing writer Tanner Simkins, originally for Full-Court Press.
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Ravens Offer Exchange Opportunity For Ray Rice Jerseys

The Ravens announced that they will offer an exchange for Ray Rice jerseys Friday and Saturday at M&T Bank Stadium, in which fans can obtain an available jersey of another Ravens player. There will be no exchanges at Thursday’s home game against the Steelers. Jerseys eligible for excha…

In CBS Interview, Goodell Affirms NFL Had Not Seen Second Rice Tape

“CBS This Morning” aired an extensive interview with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell , who spoke with CBS’ Norah O’Donnell about the Ray Rice scandal. When asked if anyone with the league saw the second videotape before Monday, Goodell replied, “No one in the NFL to…

The Daily’s Hot Reads For Wednesday: Between The Acts

The SEATTLE TIMES’ Matt Pentz looks at the era between NASL folding in ’84 and the start of MLS in ’96: “The players who helped set the stage for the home 1994 World Cup and the subsequent creation of MLS came of age in semiprofessional and indoor leagues, in front of empty sta…

Executive Transactions

The NHL named interim Senior VP/Player Safety STEPHANE QUINTAL to the position on a permanent basis ( NHL )….Dynasty Sports & Entertainment named NHL Panthers Business Analyst STUART HALBERG VP/Business Strategy & Analytics ( THE DAILY )….Sources said that the Pistons named…

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Increase your company’s exposure in the sport business marketplace and get your message in front of the industry’s top executives. For more information on placing a classified in SportsBusiness Daily, please contact Heather Taylor at 704-973-1525 or htaylor@sportsbusinessda…

Adidas Falls To No. 3 In U.S. Sportswear Sales Behind UA Due To 23% Dropoff

adidas “for the first time has dropped to the No. 3 spot among sportswear brands in the U.S.,” as its combined sales of athletic footwear and apparel this year trail those of Under Armour, according to Sara Germano of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. Data from Sterne Agee and SportScanInfo shows t…

Dana White Not Troubled By Clashing MMA Events In Connecticut

Two MMA events at Connecticut casinos will overlap Friday night: the “UFC Fight Night 50” card at Foxwoods on FS1 and the “Bellator 123” event at Mohegan Sun on Spike TV. UFC President Dana White said, “It’s the way it worked out. (Fox) decides which way you’re going to go.” Bellator MMA…

Buzzer Beaters….

San Jose State and the Northern California Lexus Dealers have signed a multiyear deal whereby Lexus will serve as presenting sponsor of the Lexus Gold Room, Lexus Suite Level and Lexus Parking Lots are Spartan Stadium. Lexus also will sponsor a social media pod at home games that serves a…

Clippers Select RPA As Team’s New Agency Following Review

The Clippers named RPA the team’s new agency after a review “that came on the heels of the scandal” around former Owner Donald Sterling . RPA will be responsible for “strategy, creative, media planning and buying, digital and social marketing, as well as branded entertainment.” Ultimately…

Nationwide Expands Sponsorship Of Hendrick Motorsports’ No. 88 Car

Nationwide has expanded its deal with Hendrick Motorsports to become the primary sponsor of the No. 88 Chevy driven by Dale Earnhardt Jr. for a majority of races in the ’15 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. The insurance company will increase its primary sponsorship to 21 races, incl…

Seau Estate Wants To Move Claim Against NFL To State Court

The estate of late NFLer Junior Seau plans to file a motion in Pennsylvania federal court to remove his claim against the NFL and litigate it in California state court, said Steve Strauss , an attorney for the family. Strauss announced earlier this week the Seau family would opt out of …

Weekend Plans With MKTG Inc. Chair Charlie Horsey: Balancing Work, Family

As Chair & CEO of N.Y.-based MKTG Inc., marketing industry veteran CHARLIE HORSEY keeps a full calendar that includes a fair share of travel, both in the U.S. and abroad. That busy schedule shows no sign of lightening up after the company’s recent acquisition by Dentsu Aegis, which f…

SBJ In-Depth: Game Changers – Women in Sports Business

This special section will tell the stories of women who are driving the sports business and helping to shape the industry’s future. Whether they work at leagues, teams, sponsors, agencies, media companies or elsewhere, their accomplishments and innovative approaches to their jobs set…