ESPN Announces Early Neutral Site Broadcast Schedule For 2014 College Football Season

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN announced this week, the broadcast schedule for five neutral site college football games that will open the 2014 season. The network’s neutral site schedule kicks off Thursday, August 28th with the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Game featuring Boise State and Ole Miss on ESPN. It also includes games featuring five teams ranked in an early ESPN.com pre-season Top 25 poll for 2014. Those games will be broadcast Saturday, August 30th. ABC will carry two of those games in a double header featuring No. 1 Florida State and No. 2 Alabama. ESPN will carry a matchup of No. 14 Wisconsin and No. 13 LSU. And ESPN2 will carry No. 24 Central Florida’s game in Dublin, Ireland.

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN’s College Football Top 25 Pre-season poll can be viewed online at http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/10414082/alabama-crimson-tide-win-recruiting-war-moves-latest-way-too-early-top-25.

ESPN’s 2014 season kicks off Saturday, August 23rd on ESPN’s new FCS Kickoff at 3:30pm ET on ESPN. It will feature a matchup of Sam Houston State at Eastern Washington. The network’s schedule ends with the new College Football Playoff Championship game live from Arlington, Texas on Monday, January 12th on ESPN. The current list of ESPN and ABC’s neutral site games is listed below. More games will be announced in the coming months.

2014 Neutral Site Schedule (as of April 16)

 

Date Time (ET) Game Network
Thu, Aug 28 8 p.m. Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game: Boise State vs. Ole Miss ESPN
Sat, Aug 30 8:30 a.m. 2014 Croke Park Classic: Penn State vs. No. 24 Central Florida * ESPN2
  3:30 p.m. Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game: West Virginia vs. No. 2 Alabama ABC and ESPN2
  8 p.m. Cowboys Classic: No. 1 Florida State vs. Oklahoma State ABC
  9 p.m. AdvoCare Texas Kickoff: No. 14 Wisconsin vs. No. 13 LSU ESPN

 

More information on the ESPN family of networks’ coverage of the 2014 College Football Season in available online at http://www.facebook.com/CFBonESPN, http://espn.go.com/ncf/index and http://twitter.com/espncfb. 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.

ESPN College Football Analysts Announce Picks For BCS Bowls

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

The holiday season is said to be the most wonderful time of the year.  For college football fans, it’s not Christmas, but the days after that are the most wonderful time of the year.  That’s because the biggest games of the college football season are played in the days after Christmas.  And fans can catch all of the action across the ESPN family of networks and online.  It all starts off New Year’s Day with the 100th Rose Bowl and the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.  Number Four Michigan State will face off against Number Five Stanford in the Rose Bowl presented by Vizio at 5pm.  Number Six Baylor and Number Fifteen UCF follow at 8:30pm in the annual Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.

The new year football celebrations continue Thursday, January 2nd with a matchup of Number Three Alabama taking on Number Eleven Oklahoma in the Allstate Sugar Bowl.  That game is slated for an 8:30pm start time.  The Discover Orange Bowl follows the next night at 8:30pm with Number Twelve Clemson taking on Number Seven Ohio State.  That games is also set for an 8:30pm kickoff.  Wrapping up the week of football festivities is the Vizio BCS National Championship next Monday, January 6th.  The one-loss Auburn Tigers will take on the undefeated Florida State Seminoles in college football’s biggest game.

As college football fans across the country get ready for their most wonderful time of the year, ESPN’s college football analysts have made their own predictions as to the winner of each game.  Their picks are listed below.  It should be noted that the analysts in question did not pick the games that they are calling.

ESPN Analysts BCS Picks

Analyst Rose Bowl

#STANvsMSU

Fiesta Bowl

#UCFvsBAY

Sugar Bowl

#OUvsBAMA

Orange Bowl

#CLEMvsOSU

Championship

#FSUvsAUB

Anthony Becht Stanford UCF Alabama Ohio State Florida State
Mike Bellotti Stanford Baylor Alabama Ohio State Florida State
Kevin Carter Stanford Baylor Alabama Clemson Florida State
Todd Blackledge Stanford Baylor Clemson
Ed Cunningham Stanford Baylor Alabama Clemson Florida State
Joey Galloway Michigan State Baylor Alabama Clemson Florida State
Rod Gilmore Stanford Alabama Ohio State Auburn
Brian Griese Stanford Baylor Alabama Ohio State Florida State
Brock Huard Michigan State Baylor Alabama Ohio State Florida State
Danny Kanell Stanford Baylor Alabama Clemson Florida State
Tom Luginbill Stanford Baylor Alabama Clemson Auburn
Brett McMurphy Stanford Baylor Alabama Clemson Florida State
Jesse Palmer Stanford Baylor Alabama Ohio State Florida State
Chris Spielman Michigan State Alabama Florida State
Matt Stinchcomb Stanford Baylor Alabama Clemson Auburn
Andre Ware Michigan State

 

More information on all of the week’s upcoming BCS games is available online at http://www.facebook.com/CFBonESPN, http://espn.go.com/ncf/index, and http://twitter.com/espncfb.  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.

ESPN Family Of Networks Get Big Wins Thanks To Football Coverage

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN heads have lots of reason to be happy today.  The “Worldwide Leader in Sports” lived up to its name once again as it took all key male demos and adult demos Monday night.  The win is thanks to ESPN’s weekly Monday Night Football broadcast.  Monday night’s broadcast of the Saints’ 38-17 victory over the Dolphins helped ESPN take the night in its key demos across both cable and standard broadcast networks.  The broadcast ranked a strong second overall for the night across networks and programs in total viewers.

Monday night’s MNF broadcast pulled in an 8.6 US rating.  That number represents an average of 9,945,000 households and 13,717,000 viewers according to Nielsen.  ESPN pulled its highest numbers in a fifteen minute window between 9:30pm ET and 9:45pm ET with a 10.4 rating.  In the Dolphins’ home turf of Miami, the game pulled a 13.1 rating on ESPN and a 4.0 on WSFL-CW.  The numbers combine for a total rating in the Miami market of 17.1.  On the other side of the ball, viewers in New Orleans helped the broadcast pull in a rating of 21.7 on ESPN and a 39.3 on the Saints’ home station, WDSU-NBC.  The ratings combined for a total 61.0 rating in that market.  This is a huge number for the New Orleans market as both numbers by themselves and together beat out the top 10 metered markets and the markets of competing teams.

Through the fourth week of the NFL’s regular season, ESPN’s MNF broadcasts now average an 8.8 rating, which is equivalent to 10,201,000 households and 13,985,000 viewers.  This ties the network’s numbers in the same period during the 2012 NFL season.

Next week on ESPN’s weekly broadcast, Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons face off against Geno Smith and the New York Jets.  The game is scheduled to start at 8:30pm.

Monday Night’s ratings win is just one more reason for ESPN staffers to be happy.  That’s because ESPN also took the night Saturday night, too.  ABC’s Saturday Night Football presented by Windows pulled in an average of 6,751,000 viewers and a 4.0 household rating.  The night’s broadcast saw the Ohio State Buckeyes defeat the Wisconsin Badgers 31-24.  The broadcast put ABC in the night’s top spot in all key male and adult demos (18-34, 18-49, and 25-54).

ESPN’s Saturday night doubleheader brought the network to a solid second place finish for the night across all key male and adult demos.  The University of Alabama blanked Ole Miss 25-0 in the first game of the night’s doubleheader schedule.  The match pulled in an average 4,022,000 viewers and a 2.3 household rating.  The second game of the night, Stanford’s 55-17 defeat of Washington State, finished with an average 1,851,000 viewers and a 1.2 household rating.

ESPN2’s broadcast of Texas A&M’s 45-33 win over Arkansas on September 28th averaged 2,761000 viewers and a 1.7 household rating.  That game, combined with those on ESPN and ABC , means that the networks together aired the four-most viewed college football games on Saturday night.

To put things into even more perspective for viewers, ABC’s Saturday Night Football presented by Windows is averaging 6,351,000 viewers so far this season with a 3.8 household rating.  That is an increase of seventeen percent and thirteen percent respectively over the network’s numbers for its broadcasts in 2012.  Overall, ESPN’s Saturday Night series is growing, too.  This season so far, it is averaging 3,899,000 viewers and a 2.3 household rating.  Those are increases of thirty-three percent and twenty-eight percent respectively.  And ESPNU’s Saturday night broadcasts are up thirty percent and thirty-three percent respectively in comparison to last year’s numbers at this time.  This year so far, ESPNU’s Saturday night broadcasts are averaging 651,000 viewers and a 0.4 household rating.

If these numbers aren’t enough reason to ESPN’s staffers and fans to celebrate, ESPN’s weekly Thursday night broadcast has seen significant growth over 2012, too.  It is averaging 2,681,000 viewers so far this season and a 1.8 household rating.  Those are increases of fifteen and thirteen percent respectively lover last year’s numbers at this time.  And its overall college football game coverage is averaging 3,104,000 viewers with a 2.0 household rating.  Those are increases of sixteen and twelve percent over 2012’s numbers respectively.

More information on ESPN’s latest ratings wins and more is available online at http://www.espn.com and http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.

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.