SportsNewser: March Madness To Cable, Underwood, Fox Sports Hires From Canada

By Alex Weprin Comment

FS1’s Dan O’Toole and Jay Onrait

It is a big day in the world of sports media, with three big news items about three different sports divisions.

First, Turner Sports and CBS Sports have announced that the March Madness NCAA Final Four and NCAA Championship Game will move to cable, with Final Four games on TBS starting next year, and the Championship Game in 2016. CBS and TBS will switch off the Final Four and Championship Games through the remainder of the long-term deal through 2024.

“Since the inception of our partnership, I don’t think we could have envisioned such a seamless collaboration between our two companies both in front of and behind the cameras,” said David Levy, president of Sales, Distribution and Sports for Turner, in a statement.

NBC Sports is making a major change to “Sunday Night Football,” bringing in Carrie Underwood to perform “Waiting For Sunday Night,” the official theme song of the program.

Finally, Fox Sports took the sports world by storm this week by naming Jay Onrait and Dan O’Toole as the primary highlight team for “Fox Sports Live,” the daily sports news show to launch on Fox Sports 1 later this year.

Onrait and O’Toole join FS1 from Canada’s TSN, where they co-anchored “SportsCentre.” At TSN, they duo drew comparisons to Keith Olbermann and Dan Patrick at ESPN’s “SportsCenter” for their chemistry and humor.

“Nowhere in America today are there sports anchors with the style and rapport that Jay and Dan have,” said Fox Sports co-president and COO Eric Shanks in a statement. “We respect their work and the tremendous relationship they’ve established over the years with Canadian sports fans. We’re excited to have had a chance to get to know them, and that they’ll have a major role in the launch of FOX Sports 1.”