As everyone already knows, FOX is launching a national 24-hour cable channel on August 17, 2013 which is being labeled as “America’s newest sports network.” No one knows for sure how the network will perform in general, let alone if it will make a great run at ESPN. Here is what we do know, Fox Sports 1 is set to open in 90 million homes and they have been on a fairly robust hiring spree for on-air talent for the past 6 months. Excuse us for not being focused on the ratings and important media questions here, but we are focused on monitoring 5 things as the launch unfolds which you can read below.
EDITOR’S NOTE: If you want to see Fox Sports COO Randy Freer speak more on the launch, he will be there in the flesh giving a keynote at Variety’s Sports Entertainment Summit which is taking place on Aug. 15 in Los Angeles. Giving a keynote 2 days before the launch of your new sports network seems like something that could be fairly awesome. You can get a 10% discount from us to attend the event if you click HERE. Check out the summit’s other events and speakers HERE.
1) The Female Talent of FOX Sports 1 – So you are looking to attract male viewers? Well by hiring this group of lovely ladies you have made a few early good decisions. Excited to see how the ladies progress throughout the launch.
2) Jay Onrait & Dan O’Toole – The two have been anchoring TSN’s Sportscenter(e) (sort of) for quite some time and have some of the best chemistry of co-anchors since Olbermann and Patrick back in the day. Will they thrive in whatever new format Fox Sports 1 is throwing at them? Is it enough star power to steal some Sportscenter viewers?
3) Olbermann Rumored To Host Sportscenter? – Jason McIntyre over at The Big Lead ran a story in which he mentioned that it is a possibility that Olbermann could be hosting Sportscenter the week following the launch of Fox Sports 1. If true, that will be a fun back and forth.
4) How Will The Athletes Translate On Camera? – Fox Sports 1 has been hiring like crazy, and in that stable of hires comes plenty of ex-players from all sports. How will they perform? Will there be any standouts? This has backfired in the past, so it will be interesting to track their progress. Some of those names include Chelios, Urlacher, McNabb, Kwan etc…
5) Katie Nolan – We have been fans of Katie while she has thrived over at Guyism doing the Speed Round, but how will she translate to a bigger platform? Most importantly we wish her well and will be counting the number of times she swears on live TV. No pressure, Katie. We are rooting for you.
Variety’s Sports Entertainment Summit Aug. 15 – See Kings Hall of Famer and President Luc Robitaille, Fox Sports COO Randy Freer, Dodgers CMO Lon Rosen and more!