Fast Break - March 2006

It's Downloadable, Baby; Cell Call

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March 2006
Fast News
It's Downloadable, Baby Nine-to-fivers finally were able to catch more than early-round March Madness highlights on late-night SportsCenter newscasts. Apple Computer Inc. partnered with CBS Sports - which recently acquired College Sports TV (CSTV), a digital sports media company that specializes in covering nearly 40 men's and women's college sports - to offer condensed versions of this month's NCAA Division I men's basketball tournament games through its online iTunes Music Store.

Designed to be viewed on a computer or video iPod, the games are available for purchase the day after they air on CBS for either $1.99 apiece or as part of a $19.99 "Season Pass" package, which features condensed versions of all 63 tournament games. (The national semifinal and championship games will be offered in their entirety.) Much like a podcast, every game will automatically be placed in a customer's download queue the day after it airs, and will be available for download once a user logs into iTunes.

The joint venture with iTunes represents CSTV's first major deal since being acquired by CBS, which will also provide analysis and commentary on each game.

Cell Call It isn't news that the University of South Carolina this week challenged companies to contribute to the school's athletic program. What is newsworthy, however, is the fact that USC is soliciting not monetary donations, but proposals to use hydrogen fuel-cell technology to power the school's athletic facilities.

The Greater Columbia Fuel Cell Challenge, issued at the National Hydrogen Association's Annual Conference in Long Beach, Calif., is a project of the USC Columbia Fuel Cell Collaborative, which includes USC, the city of Columbia, EngenuitySC and the S.C. Research Authority.

Through the multiyear, multimillion-dollar initiative, the group intends to collaborate with companies and offer awards to help pay for their work on a variety of projects in Columbia. "I would view this as a mosaic of opportunities," Tony Boccanfuso, USC's director of research and economic development, told The State of Columbia. "(Projects) could range from doing things like informal fuel-cell education programs to installation of fuel cells in the field."

Possible athletics projects at USC include fuel cell-powered scoreboards and lighting at the school's new baseball stadium, as well as similar modifications to existing facilities such as Williams-Brice Stadium and the Colonial Center.

In the Field
Company News
  • Basic Coatings of Des Moines, Iowa, has partnered with several industry leaders such as WD Flooring to establish a comprehensive wood floor school geared to help industry veterans as well as new employees. The Basic Pro School's National Wood Flooring Association-approved curriculum consists of one day of installation and three days of safety, repairs, sanding and finishing techniques.
  • January brought the launch of a new company called Varsity Edge Sports (varsityedgesports.com) that provides consultation and education services for parents and high school athletes interested in continuing their athletic careers in college.
  • The Pilates Method Alliance's third International Pilates Day will be held in at least five countries on May 6 to raise funds in support of a groundbreaking public school initiative to fight inactivity in America's youth and combat childhood obesity.

Want to see your name in lights? Send press releases and news to our Web Editor for consideration: webeditor@athleticbusiness.com

It's Show Time
Huge Variety of Products on Display at Trade Show One great benefit of attending the Athletic Business Conference & Expo, Nov. 15-17 in Las Vegas, is the opportunity to see all the latest products and services on the trade show floor. You'll find everything you need to design, build, operate, equip and market your facilities and programs - from fitness equipment, software, basketball products and surfaces to aquatics products, lockers, architectural services and scoreboards.

Want to try before you buy? Early-morning workouts are a great place to try out new cardiovascular, strength and stretching equipment, or attend an exercise class. You can also pit your basketball skills against other attendees at the Free-Throw Challenge on the exhibit floor. A full schedule of exhibit hall activities will be handed out daily.

Cost is just $395 for the first person, $340 per person for the second and third person from the same organization, and $160 per person for each additional person (4th and beyond) from the same organization -- inexpensive when compared to many other conferences.

About AB Conference

Fast Job
The University of Miami is seeking an assistant director of intramurals, special events and camps, responsible for administering, planning, marketing, implementing, supervising and evaluating all intramural sports, special events, wellness center sport programs and camps. Applicants must have at least two years of experience; experience as a graduate assistant can count for one year of work experience.

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Don't Miss This
In our next issue: Sex & Sensibility: Gender equity hasn't translated to the marketing of women's sports.

Subscribe to Athletic Business magazine.

Did You Miss This?
In our previous issue: Alternative-energy strategies to help pool operators beat the price of natural gas.

Read "Fueling Change"from the March issue

And the Survey Said
In response to last month's Quick Question about security, nearly half of you thought that combining crowd control methods was most effective.

Complete Results: What's the most effective method to control crowds and enforce security at athletic and recreation events?

  • Guards at facility entrances and in stands 44%
  • Public-address announcements 3%
  • Metal detectors 4%
  • Facial recognition software 1%
  • Combination of all four 48%
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