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After the recent succession of eye pokes, a lot of people looked to point the finger (which was the problem to begin with) toward officials and gloves as the reason for the injuries. Fans and fighters are calling for better refs, different gloves, or even different rules. The rules are one thing that Dana White likes to agree with on being changed, but it does not mean that the other options should not be explored . . .
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UFC Proves to Be Big Business for Fox



Saturday, January 26th, 2013

By Jonathan Solomon

 

The debate continues about how positive the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s relationship with Fox may be long term but the present impact proves to be a wealthy one.

In an exclusive Adweek.com report, Fox Sports Media Group’s vice president of ad sales Peter Vesey says the network has a total of 16 national clients for Saturday’s UFC show in Chicago.

The group includes new partners including Coca-Cola, Chrysler, Geico and DirecTV. Plus, Sprint agreed to a deal as late as Thursday evening.

Fox is happy with these live Saturday night specials because it doubles their average advertising rate on those nights, bringing in more than $100,000 per 30-second spot.

The last UFC on Fox special aired on December 8 with Benson Henderson beating Nate Diaz in a five-round decision to retain his lightweight championship. An average 4.4 million viewers tuned in with a peak of 5.7 million during the main event. Most attractive to television executives were the numbers geared towards prized demographics of men aged 18-34 and 18-49. In those groups, they pulled ratings of 2.8 and 3.1, respectively.

Fox led all networks last month and they are expected to do the same this weekend with a slate of reruns and general programming that does not attract the young male audience like the UFC has proven to do.

In addition to the nationally known brands mentioned above, Paramount Pictures and 20th Century Fox have also purchased ad time to promote “Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters” and “A Good Day to Die Hard”, respectively. Previous UFC sponsors returning will be Bud Light and Harley-Davidson, both of whom will be featured prominently Saturday night.

So, while defending flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson looks to retain his gold against John Dodson for the first time, whatever may happen, the UFC and Fox are already banking plenty of respect and money thanks to their sponsors and expected network television ratings dominance.


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