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PwC Sports Outlook Report Outlines Top Trends Influencing Sports in 2022

Among PwC’s top trends is the increasing number of sports documentaries and reality TV. Multi-part docuseries are growing in popularity following the success of ESPN’s The Last Dance.

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Accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has released its ninth annual Sports Outlook for North America report, which details the top trends and issues that will influence the sports industry during the coming year.

For 2022, one of the top trends highlighted likely won’t surprise anyone currently watching or following sports. Sports betting continues to grow as it becomes legal in more states, sports leagues form partnerships with betting companies, and sportsbooks increase their footprint in sports media. Last year, over $52 billion was wagered on sports.

Streaming content is also trending upward as media companies and networks develop and launch direct-to-consumer platforms that allow viewers to watch sporting events and ancillary content without a cable or satellite subscription. Sinclair, NBC Sports, MSG Networks, and Marquee Sports Network are among the outlets with streaming services in various stages of development.

Another trend to keep an eye on is media partnerships. Apple just provided an example of that by agreeing to a rights deal with Major League Baseball to stream exclusive Friday night games. The tech company is also pursuing a deal with the NFL to acquire NFL Sunday Ticket and a stake in NFL Media. Of course, one of the biggest new partnerships to watch later this year is Amazon, which has exclusive rights to Thursday Night Football this coming season.

Also among PwC’s top trends is the increasing number of sports documentaries and reality TV. Multi-part docuseries are growing in popularity following the success of ESPN’s The Last Dance. The network will debut a six-part series on Derek Jeter titled The Captain. Apple will launch They Call Me Magic, a four-part film on Magic Johnson, and is developing a 10-part docuseries on the New England Patriots dynasty.

The full PwC Sports Outlook and the full list of trends, including NFTs and live audiences returning to sports venues, that will influence sports in 2022 is available here, if you’re interested in taking a look.

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Lachlan Murdoch: ‘FOX Bet Has Been Disappointing’

“In a recent interview, he told Axios that the app has around 6.5 million users since its launch.”

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FOX is the only network to have a stake in the sports betting industry. The network partnered with FanDuel to launch FOX Bet in 2019. So far, FOX CEO Lachlan Murdoch has not been pleased with the results.

In a recent interview, he told Axios that the app has around 6.5 million users since its launch. He called the performance thus far “disappointing.”

Sports betting is a crowded marketplace. It is possible that players are watching games on FOX and seeing advertisements for the betting app, but are choosing to trust their experience to companies like FanDuel, DraftKings, Caesars, and other companies that are more commonly associated with gambling.

Murdoch believes that a dispute with FanDuel owner Flutter has set FOX Bet back. The two companies have been involved in a standoff over who owns which aspects of FOX Bet and what price FOX is obligated to pay in order to acquire an 18.6% stake in FanDuel. Murdoch says everything “should be resolved by the summer.”

In March, Bloomberg reported that the app is struggling to find new players. FOX Bet is one of the betting partners of the NFL and can advertise its services during games in the fall, but its potential is hindered by only being available to bettors in four states.

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Online Sports Betting Not Happening In Maryland In 2022

“Some state regulators had expressed optimism at one point that online sports betting in Maryland would go live by the end of this year or in time for next year’s Super Bowl.”

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Online sports betting in Maryland appears to have no shot of happening this year due mainly to the fact that the state’s oversight committee on sports wagering is hung up on how to bring women and minority-owned businesses into the fold.

The Maryland Sports Wagering Application Review Committee (SWARC) is currently awaiting results of a disparity study by the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency.

Some state regulators had expressed optimism at one point that online sports betting in Maryland would go live by the end of this year or in time for next year’s Super Bowl. But given where SWARC is, the whole process is being held up to the point that it’ll likely be later in 2023 before residents can use their phones to place bets.

It’s been just over a year since Governor Larry Hogan signed legislation that legalized sports betting in the state. Since then, five casinos in the state have opened retail sportsbooks.

The casinos have handled more than $132 million in bets since December. $26.9 million in wagers were placed in April alone.

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Media Reacts To Nick Saban’s Comments On Texas A&M, Jackson State

“Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.”

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Nick Saban had some choice words about recruiting in the NIL era on Wednesday night. The Alabama head coach didn’t just voice frustrations with the process. He called out three schools specifically for using Name, Image and Likeness payments to create an advantage for themselves in recruiting.

He said that Texas A&M, which signed the top-ranked recruiting class in 2022 according to a number of outlets “bought every player on their team.”

He said that Jackson State gave a player $1 million to come to the school. “It was in the paper,” he said. “They bragged about it! Nobody did anything about it.”

It is likely that he was talking about defensive back Travis Hunter, widely regarded as one of the five best players in the class of 2022. It should be noted that Jackson State Coach Deion Sanders has been adamant that Hunter did not receive a dime from the school or anyone else.

The comments created plenty of content on sports radio on Thursday.

Jimbo Fischer, the head coach of Texas A&M took the story to a new level with a press conference of his own in which he cryptically encouraged people to “dig into” Saban’s career history.

The commentary in the sports media came in all kinds of forms. Plenty took to Twitter to express an opinion.

Others used the feud to create comedy.

Finally, others did actual reporting. they made phone calls to get context and further the story.

The coaches may be relatively quiet in public for a while. That doesn’t mean the stories and reactions are going away. Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.

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