ESPN Announces 2017-18 ‘MNF’ Broadcast Schedule

Courtesy: ESPN

The unofficial countdown to the start of the 2017 – 2018 NFL season starts in only a few days with the start of the 2017 NFL Draft, and in anticipation of the big day, ESPN has released its Monday Night Football broadcast schedule for the upcoming season.

The 48th season of ESPN’s Monday Night Football begins Monday, Sept. 11 with a double-header schedule.  The Saints and Vikings open the night in an NFC inter-divisional matchup at 6:55 p.m. ET.

The Chargers (in their first season in Los Angeles) will face off against the Broncos in an AFC West matchup.  Coverage is scheduled to start at 10:15 p.m. ET/7;15 p.m. PT.

ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcast team of Sean McDonough and Jon Gruden and Lisa Salters will cover the night’s early game.  The on-air team for the late game will be announced soon.  Suzy Kolber will anchor the ESPN’s Monday Night Countdown pre-game show throughout the season along with the network’s halftime and post-game SportsCenter live from each game’s location.

Both of last season’s Super Bowl teams will make appearances on Monday Night Football appearances this season.  The Patriots will appear Dec. 11 against Miami.  Atlanta will make two appearances on MNF this season.  The team’s first appearance will be Nov. 20 in Seattle against the Seahawks and the second on Dec. 18 against Tampa Bay.

All 12 of last season’s playoff teams will also make appearances on MNF this season. Eight teams will have two appearances.  Nine of 17 of this season’s MNF game will feature divisional matchups.

The network’s preseason NFL coverage starts Thursday, Aug. 17 as the Bucs take on the Jaguars in Jacksonville.  The Browns will play host to the Giants on Aug. 21 to round out the pre-season.

ESPN Deportes will offer Spanish-language broadcasts of every game this season while fans will once again be able to stream games online via WatchESPN and the ESPN app.

The complete 2017 – 2018 Monday Night Football broadcast schedule is noted below.

 

ESPN’s 2017 Monday Night Football Schedule

Preseason    
Date Time (ET) Teams
Thurs, Aug. 17 8 p.m. Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Jacksonville Jaguars
Mon, Aug. 21 8 p.m. New York Giants at Cleveland Browns
Regular Season    
Sept. 11 6:55 p.m. New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings
  10:15 p.m. Los Angeles Chargers at Denver Broncos
Sept. 18 8:15 p.m. Detroit Lions at New York Giants
Sept. 25 8:15 p.m. Dallas Cowboys at Arizona Cardinals
Oct. 2 8:15 p.m. Washington Redskins at Kansas City Chiefs
Oct. 9 8:15 p.m. Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears
Oct. 16 8:15 p.m. Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans
Oct. 23 8:15 p.m. Washington Redskins at Philadelphia Eagles
Oct. 30 8:15 p.m. Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs
Nov. 6 8:15 p.m. Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers
Nov. 13 8:15 p.m. Miami Dolphins at Carolina Panthers
Nov. 20 8:15 p.m. Atlanta Falcons at Seattle Seahawks
Nov. 27 8:15 p.m. Houston Texans at Baltimore Ravens
Dec. 4 8:15 p.m. Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals
Dec. 11 8:15 p.m. New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins
Dec. 18 8:15 p.m. Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Dec. 25 8:15 p.m. Oakland Raiders at Philadelphia Eagles

More information on ESPN’s Monday Night Football coverage is available online now along with all of the latest NFL headlines at:

 

 

 

Website: http://espn.go.com/nfl

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NFLonESPN

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ESPNNFL

 

 

 

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‘Sports Detectives: Season One’ Is A Winning Debut For Smithsonian Channel Series

Courtesy: Smithsonian Channel/Public Media Distribution

Early this month, Public Media Distribution and Smithsonian Channel partnered to release the first season of the network’s new sports history-based series Sports Detectives on DVD.  One part History Detectives, one part 30 for 30 and one part Expedition Unknown, this introductory season will appeal to any sports and sports history buff. That is due in no small part to the sports that it covers over the course of its episodes.  The stories that are presented within each episode are just as important to discuss as the sports that are covered.  The transitions that are used in the two-part episodes round out the season’s most important elements.  Each element is clearly important in its own right to the season’s overall presentation.  All things considered, Sports Detectives: Season One is, overall, a winner for any sports aficionado.

The debut season of Smithsonian Channel’s Sports Detectives is a presentation that will appeal to sports buffs of all ages.  That is due in no small part to the sports that are covered over the course of its 300-minutes.  From the first disc to the second, the series covers all of America’s major sports.  There are two stories from Major League Baseball, two from the National Football League, one from the National Hockey League and one from the National Basketball Association.  They are not the only sports that are covered in this collection.  NASCAR fans get a nod with a story focusing on the legend of Dale Earnhardt’s pink K-2 Ford driven early in his career, one for the horse racing fans out there and even one focusing on the boxing world.  Simply put, those behind the series made sure to reach out to fans of as many sports as possible with these stories  The only downside here is that there is no listing of the stories inside or outside the box.  Even with that in mind, the inclusion of stories from most of the sports world’s major arenas (yes, that bad pun was intended) is in itself plays a big part in the program’s overall presentation.  The fact that the series has yet to touch on soccer (yes, that bad pun was intended, too) gives fodder for more stories.  There are certain to be stories from the worlds of golf and tennis, too.  That is not even mentioning the college sports realm, too.  Keeping that in mind, this gives plenty of material for at least a second season.  Keeping all of this in mind, the sports that are covered and the sports that could be covered in a second season of Sports Detectives show why they are pivotal to the series’ first season.  They are, collectively speaking, just part of what makes this season so enjoyable for sports lovers.  The stories presented within the episodes are just as important to discuss in examining this season as the sports presented within the episodes.

The stories that are presented within each episode are so important to discuss because of the history that each story presents.  The stories also don’t always result in a clear answer either.  The story of Muhammad Ali’s Olympic Gold Medal supports both of those statements.  Audiences learn through this story about how he represented his country at the 1960 Olympics, only to allegedly throw it in the Ohio River upon his return to the U.S.  The alleged incident happened, according to the story, after he was denied service in his still segregated home city of Louisville.  Not to give away too much here, but the story is never fully solved despite the lengths to which the investigative team of Kevin Barrows and Lauren Gardner go to try to solve the mystery.  That the story isn’t solved actually adds to its interest, leaving one wonder if there is any validity to Ali’s story or not.

The story of Ali’s missing 1960 Olympic Gold medal is just one example of the importance of this season’s stories.  The story of Lou Gehrig’s baseball bat is another prime example of the importance of the season’s episodes.  This is one of the stories that is solved.  The investigation here finds a bat that was in fact once in the hands of the baseball legend.  The revelation that someone out there has a bat that was in fact once held (and used in a game) by the legendary figure is in itself incredible.  The history behind the bat is just as interesting.  It is just one more of the stories that shows the importance of the stories featured in this season.  There is also a story centered on famed horse Secretariat’s saddle cloth that is just as interesting.

The story of Secretariat’s supposedly missing saddle cloth is another one that results in the mystery being solved.  What is so interesting in this story is the revelation of how easily it could have and did go missing in the commotion following Secretariat’s win in one of horse racing’s biggest events.  The story keeps audiences engaged because of the twists and turns that it presents as it eventually leads to the discovery of the saddle cloth.  Those twists and turns keep viewers wondering right up to the eventual discovery if it will turn up.  Again, it is just one more example of why the episodes’ stories are so important to the season’s overall presentation.  The story of a flag brought to the ice after the famed “miracle on ice” Olympic matchup between the U.S. and Russia, the location of an NFL Champion’s ring and that of a famed basketball are a few more examples of why this season’s stories are just as important to discuss as the sports that are covered in examining the season’s overall presentation.  As important as the stories presented in these episodes are to the season’s overall presentation, they are not the last of its important elements.  The transitions used in the two-part episodes are important to note, too.

The sports and stories presented throughout the first season of Smithsonian Channel’s Sports Detectives are both key elements to discuss in examining the season’s overall presentation.  They are not its only key elements to examine either.  The transitions that are used in the season’s two-part episodes are important in their own right to the season’s presentation.  The transitions used in said episodes are so important because they are so smooth. The case of the missing NFL Championship ring and the missing “Immaculate Reception” is a prime example of that statement.  Those behind the lens picked all of the right moments to connect one story to the other, thus keeping the story moving.  It is clear in watching the episode that the choices were made not only through the discussions but also through the shots.  This same approach was used in the episode focusing on Dale Earnhardt’s K-2 Ford and Secretariat’s saddle cloth and in the episode focusing on Lou Gehrig’s baseball bat and Kirk Gibson’s home run ball.  Those smart transitions will certainly keep audiences just as engaged as the stories themselves.  That is because they enhance the stories, thus making them all the more engaging.  When this element is set alongside the show’s actual stories and the sports that are featured, the whole of the elements makes this season of Sports Detectives a win for sports buffs of all ages and tastes.

Sports Detectives: Season One is a winning start for Smithsonian Channel’s new sports-based series.  That is due, as already discussed, to the diversity of sports featured in the season’s two discs and 300 minutes.  The stories at the center of each episode are just as important to discuss as the featured sports.  The transitions that are used in each episode (or more specifically, the editing in general) is the finishing touch to the season’s presentation.  Of course one could also argue the interviews, footage and pictures used in each story are important in their own right, too.  Those who point out those elements would be right, too.  All things considered, the debut season of Sports Detectives leaves no mystery why it is a winning presentation.  It is available now and can be ordered online via PBS’ online store.  More information on Sports Detectives and other Smithsonian Channel series is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.smithsonianchannel.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SmithsonianChannel

Twitter: http://twitter.com/SmithsonianChan

 

 

 

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Shout! Factory, MLB Productions Go To Bat Again For 2016 World Series Game 7 Standalone Release

Courtesy: MLB/MLB Productions

It’s time to fly the “W” again.

Shout! Factory is going to bat with Chicago Cubs fans one more time next month when it releases the historic seventh game of the 2016 World Series in its own standalone Blu-ray and DVD release. The iconic game marked the end of a 108 year wait for the club, its fans and the city that supported it through thick and thin.

Courtesy: Shout! Factory/MLB Productions

Courtesy: Shout! Factory/MLB Productions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2016 World Series: The Complete Game 7 Ultimate Edition will be released in stores and online on separate two-disc DVD and Blu-ray sets on Tuesday, May 9. Retailing for MSRP of $24.97 (Blu-ray) and $19.97 (DVD), viewers can pre-order it online now via Shout! Factory’s online store at a discounted price of $19.97 (Blu-ray) and $16.97 (DVD).

This latest presentation of the 2016 World Series’ seventh game presents the landmark four hour, twenty-eight minute matchup in its entirety complete with four separate audio options.  Those options are the original TV broadcast audio, Chicago Cubs radio broadcast, Cleveland Indians radio broadcast and Spanish-language broadcast.

As an additional bonus, the two-disc set also includes highlights of the Cubs’ 2016 postseason wins on the way to the World Series and the parade that followed.

More information on this and other titles from Shout! Factory is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.shoutfactory.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShoutFactory

 

 

 

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ESPN Networks Announce 2017 NCAA Frozen Four Broadcast Schedule

Courtesy: ESPN

March Madness is done, but it isn’t the only college sports tournament coming to an end.

The Frozen Four begins Thursday on ESPN2 at 6 p.m. E.T. with a 2-3 matchup between No. 2 Minnesota-Duluth and No. 3 Harvard. No.1 Denver will take on Notre Dame at 9:30 p.m.  The winners of those two games will face off April 8 for the college hockey championship live on ESPN.

Denver’s appearance in this year’s Frozen Four marks the second straight year that the Pioneers have advanced to the semi-final round of the college hockey’s championship tournament.  This year’s appearance is extra special for Harvard.  That is because it marks the first time since 1994 that the school has advanced to the Frozen Four.

Notre Dame has never won a college hockey championship, and while the team is no stranger to the Frozen Four, this year marks the first time in six years that it has advanced to the semi-final round of college hockey’s championship tournament.  Six years have passed since Minnesota-Duluth has been in the tournament’s semi-final round, too.  The last time the Bulldogs advanced to the Frozen Four, 2011, the team went on to win what is its only college hockey championship.

ESPN’s John Buccigross will have the call for both semi-final matchups and Saturday’s championship game.  He will be joined by ESPN hockey analyst Barry Melrose for additional commentary.  Reporter Quint Kessenich will have all of the latest in-game news and interviews.

Fans wanting a fully-immersive experience will get just that courtesy of ESPN3.  ESPN3 will offer audiences ice-level exposure courtesy of The Ref and Robo Cam.  The Robo Cam streaming option will allow fans to watch the games through a trio of cameras placed on the glass around the rink, capturing all of the natural sound from the games including arena noise.

The Ref Cam will be incorporated into the alternate presentation.

2017 marks the 24th straight year that ESPN’s networks have carried the Frozen Four.  More information on the 2017 Frozen Four is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.ncaa.com/frozenfour

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ncaamenshockey

Twitter: http://twitter.comNCAAIceHockey

 

 

 

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Rex Ryan Joins ESPN’s ‘Sunday NFL Countdown’ Broadcast Team

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN added a big name to its NFL broadcast team Monday.

Former New York Jets and Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan was announced as the newest addition ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown broadcast team Monday. Ryan will make his debut as a full-time member of ESPN’s roster this Saturday, April 8 at 3 p.m. ET as he calls Florida State University’s spring game in Tallahassee, Fla.

While his addition is the latest to ESPN’s NFL broadcast ranks, Ryan is no stranger to ESPN as an on-air figure.  He served as a guest analyst for ESPN during the network’s Postseason NFL Countdown on Super Bowl Sunday in Houston in February.

Seth Markman, senior coordinating producer for ESPN’s NFL studio shows, said Ryan’s matter-of-fact personality and his knowledge of the game made him a good fit for the network’s NFL studio shows.

“Rex is authentic – what you see if what you get, and that will be great for our viewers on Sunday NFL Countdown,” Markman said.  “We also look forward to the insight and perspective he will bring to the show as an NFL coach who has worked in the league for two decades.”

Ryan was upbeat as he discussed making the next move in his career.

“This is going to be a new experience for me and I am really excited about it,” Ryan said.  “I’ve been a coach for 30 years and I’ve been around football my entire life.  I’m passionate about the game – just like the fans are, and I’ve coached in the league for a long time, so that’s the perspective I will bring to ESPN.  I’m just going to show up and be myself and have fun with it.”

Ryan’s most recent NFL credentials include coaching the Buffalo Bills during the 2015 and 2016 seasons.  Before that, he served as head coach of the New York Jets from 2009 – 2014.  He led the Jets to back-to-back AFC Championship appearances during his tenure in New York.

He spent nine seasons as an NFL assistant with the Baltimore Ravens, winning a Super Bowl Championship with the team at Super Bowl XXXV.  From 2005 – ’08, he served as the team’s defensive coordinator.

The son of legendary NFL coach Buddy Ryan, Rex was also honored in 2006 as the Assistant Coach of the Year by Pro Football Weekly magazine and the Pro Football Writers Association.

Along with his appearances on Sunday NFL Countdown, Ryan will also contribute to ESPN’s flagship news program SportsCenter and on ESPN Radio broadcasts and more.

More information on Rex Ryan’s addition to ESPN’s NFL studio shows is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://espn.go.com/nfl

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NFLonESPN

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Tipoff Times Announced For 2017 Final Four Matchups

Courtesy: CBS Sports/Turner Sports

The big dance is almost over.

CBS Sports officials have announced the Final Four tipoff times for the 2017 NCAA Division I Men’s College Basketball Championship.  The semi-final round of this year’s tournament begins April 1 at 6:09 p.m. as South Carolina faces off against Gonzaga.  North Carolina and Oregon follow approximately 40 minutes after the Gamecocks and Bulldogs wrap their game.

Pre-game coverage begins at 3 p.m. ET on At the Final Four presented by InfinitiThe Final Four Show follows at 4 p.m. ET.  Ernie Johnson will anchor CBS Sports’ studio coverage for Saturday’s semi-finals and for the National Championship on Monday, April 3.

Greg Gumbel will anchor At the Final Four presented by Infiniti.  He will be joined by analysts Steve Smith and Seth Davis for additional commentary.

Ernie Johnson will anchor CBS’ The Final Four Show studio broadcast on Saturday. He will be joined by NBA Charles Barkley, Clark Kellogg and Kenny Smith for additional commentary during the broadcast.  Johnson will also anchor CBS’ studio coverage for the network’s National Championship broadcast on Monday.

More information on CBS’ NCAA Division I Men’s College Basketball Championship coverage is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.cbssports.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CBSSports

Twitter: http://twitter.com/CBSSports

 

 

 

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ESPN Launches MLB Pre-Season Coverage Thursday; To Carry World Baseball Classic Final Tonight

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN kicks off its Major League Baseball pre-season coverage Thursday afternoon.

The Yankees and the Rays face off in the first of the network’s pre-season broadcasts beginning at 1 p.m. Jon Sciambi will have the call for the Grapefruit League game.  He will be joined by analysts Rick Sutcliffe and Doug Glanville in the booth for additional commentary.

The Dodgers and Angels follow at 7 p.m. on ESPN in a Cactus League showdown.  The Angels currently sit fourth in the league while Los Angeles sits seventh.  Dan Shulman, the voice of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, will have the call for the game.  He will be joined in the booth by his SNB cohorts Jessica Mendoza and Aaron Boone.  Reporter Buster Olney will also be on hand for all of the latest in-game news and interviews.

Karl Ravech and Tim Kurkjian will have a wrap of up the day’s action on the diamond at 10 p.m. on Baseball Tonight on ESPN.

Before ESPN launches its Major League pre-season coverage Thursday, it will broadcast live the World Baseball Classic Final tonight at 9 p.m.  The United States and Puerto Rico will face off for this year’s title live on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes.  The broadcast begins at 9 p.m. ET.

The United States made its way to the Final after defeating Japan 2 – 1 Tuesday. The game marks the team’s first-ever time it has reached the Final.

The re-match against Puerto Rico will not be an easy contest for the Americans.  That is because Puerto Rico is undefeated in the tournament at 7 – 0.  Marcus Stroman is expected to get the start in tonight’s game for the United States while Seth Lugo is scheduled to take the mound for Puerto Rico.

More information on ESPN’s Major League Baseball coverage is available online now along with all of the latest MLB headlines at:

 

 

 

Website: http://espn.go.com/mlb

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESPNBaseballTonight

Twitter: http://twitter.com/BBTN

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.