Thursday, February 29, 2024

The Largest Streaming Deals

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

The streaming industry continues to take some interesting twists and turns and it’s hard to believe that as we put February to bed, what lies ahead for the rest of 2024?

During the NFL Playoffs, The Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium was streamed and not shown on national television. We were actually fortunate that living in Broward County, Florida that the game was seen on local television.

During the past year, the PAC-12 attempted to negotiate a streaming package with Apple-TV but none of that came to fruition and 10 schools decided to leave, therefore leaving the league down to two schools with Washington State and Oregon State. Whether the conference is able to rebuild in the next two seasons or be dissolved remains to be seen.

On the February 28, 2024 edition of the Sports Exchange, My crew consisting of Myself, George Eichorn, JB Ellis and Jacob Christner talked about the latest developments in streaming.

As I begin work on “Lessons From The Microphone” part two, hoping to release it by the end of 2024, this very subject in this story will make it between the front and back covers.

As the year unfolds, I’m sure this is a subject that I’ll be updating since this is a topic that is fluid.

On Wednesday’s show, we broke down numbers with Prime Video, MLS Season Pass, You Tube TV and Netflix. 

I’ll mention the numbers here but if you want to hear our viewpoints, then I encourage you to watch the video included in this story. Each of my panelists has an excellent perspective that they bring to the table that will keep your wheels turning.

*Prime Video’s Thursday Night Football Package is $1.2 Billion Annually.

*MLS Season Pass is paying $250 Million Annually.

*YouTube TV’s Sunday NFL Ticket is paying $2 Billion Annually.

*NetFlix WWE Raw is paying $500 Million Annually.

These numbers are all over the map pertaining to the sports that we’re talking about but they’re extremely interesting as we find out more updates about future contracts with other sports.

That’s why this is something that I’ll be monitoring all year long.

Scott Morganroth can be reached at southfloridatribune@gmail.com and you see his broadcasts by subscribing to the South Florida You Tube Channel.

Also, Scott’s book “Lessons From The Microphone” which talks about Old School Media vs New School Media, is available for purchase on Amazon and Kindle.



Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Talking USF Bulls with VP of Athletics, Michael Kelly

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

The University of South Florida Athletic Program has gone through some tough times in the past few years and has had to replace its football and basketball coaches.

But things are looking up at My Alma-Mater in Tampa.

In Alex Golesh first season, the Bulls had a 7-6 record and were invited to the Boca Raton Bowl. USF thrashed Syracuse 45-0 and the fans that took the four-hour trek down I-75 South enjoyed every minute of this game.

The basketball team is led by first year coach Amir Abdur-Rahim and his squad is currently on a 13-game winning streak. The Bulls record stands at 20-5 with a lot of basketball left to be played.

When I returned to the Yuengling Center (The Sun Dome) on February 18, 2024 for a game vs Florida Atlantic University, it was great being in a building where I earned my BA Degree and haven’t been there in over 30 years.

Sometimes as a writer, luck just goes your way.

When I was sitting in the media lounge, Bulls Vice President of Athletics, Michael Kelly introduced himself to me. We talked and just like that, he agreed to do an interview with me as we talked about the USF Athletic Program.

We talked about the Football, Men’s Basketball and Baseball programs, plus much more.

Before the interview, he knew where my loyalties are and it was great for an alumnus to talk to an athletic director on so many different topics as Kelly graciously answered all of my questions.

The entire interview is in this story it’s very insightful.

This game vs No.24 FAU was televised nationally by ESPN and USF held on to win 90-86 in front of a record crowd of 10,659. 

When I went to the Sun Dome in the mid 1980’s, our crowds were between 2-3000 and USF didn’t have a football program.

Homecoming was held at the Sun Dome for Men’s Basketball games.

How things have changed and I’m glad that I can monitor them living in South Florida.

Scott Morganroth can be reached at southfloridatribune@gmail.com and you can see his broadcasts by subscribing to the South Florida Tribune You Tube Channel.

Also, Scott’s Book “Lessons From The Microphone” is available on Amazon and Kindle.

He talks about his beginning in the media which began in 1979. 

if you’re looking to gain an understanding of the industry, this is a good read with the theme Old School Media vs New School Media.




Tuesday, February 27, 2024

February Fireworks at USF

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

Every time I return to the University of South Florida Campus in Tampa, I get chills down my spine.

On Sunday, February 18, 2024, this was a day that I’ll remember for numerous reasons.

It’s been over 30 years since I stepped foot in the Sun Dome (Yuengling Center) as I earned my BA Degree on this Floor in what went down as one of the greatest days of my life.

When I was a student at USF, Lee Rose was the head basketball coach and I used to go to a lot of games. In fact, there was no football team so our Homecoming Event was during a Men’s Basketball Game.

At the time, we we drew crowds of 2-3,000 per-game and even made an NIT Appearance under Rose. At the time, I wasn’t covering the Bulls so I sat in the student section. But in the 1990’s, when I started covering the Detroit Pistons, I would get to know Rose as he was an assistant coach in the NBA.

The best player on the Bulls team was Charlie Bradley who went on to play for the Sacramento Kings.

On this day, once I stepped in the building, My photographer Candy Ebling was taking photos of me everywhere she could as I was reminiscing about the good old days. 

When I went to the Media Lounge, I met Vice President of Athletics Michael Kelly and we did an interview together which will be a future story.

When the schedule came out, I circled this date on my calendar as the FAU Owls were coming to town.

Little would I know that the Owls and Bulls would be a nationally televised game at Noon ET on ESPN. Entering the contest, FAU was 20-5 (10-2 AAC) and USF was 18-5 (11-1 AAC).

The Owls were in the 2023 Final Four under coach Dusty May, who has complied a 121-65 mark for the Boca Raton, FL school. Meanwhile, USF Head Coach Amir Abdur Rahim is in his first year at the helm for USF.

USF leads the series 14-2 and is 10-0 vs FAU in Tampa. The last two times these squads met was on 12-29-19 when the Bulls clipped the Owls 60-58 in Tampa.

What would we see between two teams that are now rivals in the American Athletic Conference?

First of all, USF set an attendance record of 10,659 and they gave the crowd plenty to cheer about.

In the first half, it looked like the Bulls were going to run the Owls out of the building by taking a 46-31 lead. The crowd was chanting “Overrated” not showing respect for their opponent. At one point, the Bulls had a 25-point lead.

But that didn’t phase FAU as the Owls outscored USF 55-44 in the second half. That wouldn’t be enough as the Bulls held on to win the contest 90-86. USF won it’s 11th straight game. USF now leads the overall series 15-2 and 11-0 at home.

Leading the way for USF was Corey Walker with eight points and 10 rebounds. Selton Miguel amassed a career high 25 points and Chris Youngblood had 23 points. Youngblood did his damage at the free throw line going 12-13.

FAU had a balanced attack led by center Vladislav Goldin, who had 23 points and was perfect at the free throw line going 7-7. Future NBA player Johnell Davis had 20 points, five assists and six rebounds. He was 6-6 at the charity stripe. Alijah Martin had 17 points while Nick Boyd had 16.

When the contest was over, both coaches demonstrated mutual respect for one another and are aware they could meet again in the AAC Tournament.

I pressed Abdur-Rahim on whether he felt the crowd chanting “Overrated” fueled FAU’s comeback as you’re going to see in the enclosed video.

As for May, he said the loss stung but was proud of the effort his team displayed as you’re going to see at his post-game press-conference.

Both coaches know that there is a lot of basketball ahead for their teams.

The Owls rebounded on Thursday in Boca Raton by defeating SMU 80-70 but lost a heart-breaker Sunday, 78-74 on the road in Memphis. FAU hosts Tulane on Saturday at Noon and this contest can be seen on ESPN U.

As for USF, their latest wins over UTSA in Texas 66-61 and a home triumph over SMU has the Bulls winning streak at 13 games. The Bulls are looking to extend that streak to 14 games on Saturday at Charlotte.

Before you hit March Madness, there has been a lot February Fireworks and the plot will only get a lot more interesting in the coming weeks.

Scott Morganroth can be reached at Southfloridatribune@Gmail.com and you can see his broadcasts by subscribing to the South Florida Tribune You Tube Channel at no cost.

His new book, “Lessons From The Microphone” is available on Amazon and Kindle. This book emphasizes changes in Old School Media vs New School Media. Everyone can learn from this book.





Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Baseball Lifer, Andy Barkett

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

When the time comes and I get around to write my baseball book, Andy Barkett is going to get in.

Since I started working with New Media, I’ve depended on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to get guests. Some of these individuals I’ve known for a long time and had to find out where they lived while others, I messaged and asked if they wanted to come on a show.

The list of Baseball Lifers that I’ve come in contact is way too long but that’s the reason why I have enough stories to create a book.

Barkett is a great story.

He’s been with five MLB organizations at the age of 50. Four of them have been playing baseball for over 100 years.

On Wednesday, January 31, I was looking for a good baseball guest and didn’t care if the NFL was stealing all of the storylines.

I contacted Barkett on LinkedIn and set him up for 9 ET.

While I’d say at least 90% of the broadcasters would go for a gridiron guest, my philosophy of being different is was led me in this direction. 

Before I get into the show, let’s talk about Barkett, the latest Baseball Lifer that I’ve interviewed.

He began is career with the Detroit Tigers from 2006 and stayed until October 2010. He was a minor league manager for the Tigers Florida State League team in Lakeland and also managed the Oneonta Tigers in the short-season New York Penn League.

Barkett moved on to the Miami Marlins where he was the AA Manager from October 2010-October 2014 for the Jacksonville Suns.  He was also the assistant hitting coach and spent five years and one month with the fish.

His journey took him to the Pittsburgh Pirates organization where he was the AAA Manager from November 2016-October 2017. Once again, he also served as the assistant hitting coordinator.

Barkett moved on to the Boston Red Sox from October 2017-October 2019 and he was the assistant hitting coordinator. This time his work was done in MLB and as a result, Andy won a World Series Championship with the Bosox.

One player that stands out for me who went from the Red Sox to the White Sox was catcher Carlton Fisk. Fisk had his number retired in both places playing in Boston and Chicago.

Barkett has taken the same route as he was the Chicago White Sox hitting coordinator from September 2021-October 2023.

Barkett was also an assistant coach for the University of Central Florida for 1.3 years and spent a couple of months managing in the Dominican Republic.

He’s well respected in baseball as a top-notch hitting coach and has his own hitting academy. 

During his appearance on the Sports Exchange, which is included in this story, myself along with my crew asked him what it was like to be away from his family, the places he stayed in, the championship season in Boston, the art of hitting and a lot of other things.

I guarantee you won’t regret watching this interview.

It’s that time of the year when guys like Barkett are waiting for the phone to ring to see where he’ll be spending this season.

In the meantime, I was impressed with his social media following on Twitter/X as he follows 2,800 while his followers are 12,800.

This guy is learning New Media and since he lives in the Orlando Area, I look forward to the day that we’ll meet in person.

Meanwhile, I’m just looking forward to having him on future shows and he takes the same path that former NFL Assistant Coach John Bonamego took and that’s join us frequently to keep his name out there and then he gets hired.

I’m extremely gratified that Bonamego lasted an entire season on Inside The Pigskin. 

I’m not holding my breath that Barkett will spend an entire summer on 108 Stitches, Baseball Talk because I expect him to be employed elsewhere, but I’ll be thankful for what we get. 

I’m a student of the game of baseball. I’ve learned so much from all the baseball guests through the years.

Barkett coaches a craft that’s one of the most difficult things to do: hitting a baseball.

If you don’t believe me, then look up the numbers for the greatest NBA Player of All-Time Michael Jordan and Florida Gators standout QB Tim Tebow. They’ll tell you they made the right decision to stay with their respective sports.

At the age of 50, there is a lot of baseball left in Andy Barkett. The only question is where will he land next?

Scott Morganroth can be reached at southfloridatribune@gmail.com and you can follow him on Twitter/X @TribuneSouth.

To see his broadcasts, there is no cost to Subscribe to The South Florida Tribune.

Finally, Scott released a new book called, “Lessons From The Microphone” which you can purchase on Amazon and Kindle.


Monday, February 5, 2024

It’s Not Over Until It’s Over, FAU Men’s Basketball’s Version

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

A lot of us know that New York Yankees Hall of Fame Catcher Yogi Berra coined “The title of this story” many years ago, to the point that it’s a well known cliche in sports.

On January 28, 2024, In addition to myself, a packed house at the Eleanor R Baldwin Arena, in Boca Raton, FL., got to see it first hand.

All afternoon, the No.22 FAU Owls found themselves in a dogfight with their long-time rival North Texas as the game was nationally televised on ESPN 2. 

FAU entered the contest with a 16-4 mark while the visiting Mean Green came to South Florida with a 12-6 record.

What the fans saw in the first half was a defensive struggle and North Texas took 28-26 lead into the intermission. Mean Green Guard Jason Edwards led his squad in scoring with 11 points and grabbed four rebounds

FAU Guard Johnell Davis played 16:50 of the 20 minutes and led the Owls with 11 points and three rebounds. There wasn’t much to talk about as both teams played smothering defense. 

The second half opened up a little bit and there would be seven lead changes in the contest. The biggest lead in the game was by North Texas at seven points while FAU led by three points.

The last basketball game that I’ve seen during the past six years was when the Detroit Pistons lost to the Miami Heat at the American Airlines Arena and this was the last time I saw Dwyane Wade play. Due to busy schedule. I just haven’t had time to see basketball games because I’ve been busy with football and baseball.

I came to see my friend former ESPN play-by-play broadcaster Dave Barnett who is the voice of the Mean Green. Prior to the game, I did an interview with his color analyst Hank Dickensen.

What all of us would see was an outright classic buzzer beater.

With 0:00.5 seconds remaining in the game, Davis nailed a three-point shot which gave FAU a 66-63 win as the crowd absolutely erupted. Davis led all scorers with 28 points and he amassed eight rebounds to go along with a pair of steals. 

FAU outscored North Texas 40-35 in the second half.

When you break down the time with the lead, North Texas led for 29:07 while FAU had it for 3:16. What a disparity and in the eyes of Yogi Berra, this is what happens between the lines.

After the contest, Davis and Coach Dusty May met with us to talk about this thrilling contest for what Dickenson would say, “they’re bunk buddies.” May elaborated on that and was proud that his team battled to a hard fought win. 

I encourage you to watch this video in the story so you can gauge everything about this game.

While both teams played at a championship levels, we’re glad that our work was done by 4 PM as it was the week of the NFC and AFC Championship Games. 

The Lions visited the San Francisco 49’ers and the Kansas City Chiefs were in Baltimore to face the Ravens.

The Owls had plenty of time to enjoy the win as they hosted Tulsa on Saturday Night and crushed the Golden Hurricane 102-70.

FAU’s record now stands at 18-4 and is first in the American Athletic Conference while Tulsa (12-9) is 10th.

FAU moved to No.20 in the polls and now they visit the UAB Blazers Thursday Night, who are 14-8 and fifth in the AAC.

When you put this game into perspective, the game was tied at 63-63 until Davis hit the shot to avoid overtime. Then again, after FAU’s Final Four run last season, the Owls are used to these close games and they know they’re going to have plenty more this season.

As for Berra, this game was over thanks to Johnell Davis.

Scott Morganroth can be reached at southfloridatribune@gmail.com and you can see his broadcasts by subscribing to the South Florida Tribune You Tube Channel.

Also, his book, “Lessons From The Microphone” can be purchased on Amazon and Kindle. He talks about  Old School Media vs New School Media. This book is good for aspiring podcasters, journalists and any other people that want to know the inner workings of the media.


July 4th With The Marlins and Red Sox

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH The schedule makers have been great to me the past two years as the Miami Marlins have been home for July 4th. In 2023, ...