Philippines, Sports, television

Postmortem: UAAP Season 80 on ABS-CBN S+A

Another UAAP season has closed.

For the most part, UAAP Season 80 was a success. Some new champions were crowned and a few reigning titleholders were able to defend their gold, while new stars emerged and others bowed out.

As for the coverage on ABS-CBN S+A, there were some hits and misses as well. Here is a look back at what the network was able to do in Season 80.

New Upfront

The third season of ‘UAAP Upfront’ eschewed the live pregame presentation in favor of a straight-up lifestyle program dedicated to showcasing the lives of UAAP athletes away from their respective sports. It also aired exclusively during weekends, which helped mitigate whatever production costs S+A endures during live broadcasts.

UAAP Insiders

During the men’s basketball season, S+A added an extra on-air talent known as a UAAP Insider, featuring former courtside reporters Ganiel Krishnan, Angelique Manto, Ira Pablo and Pauline Versoza. Unfortunately, the addition of a UAAP Insider cut some exposure away from the new batch of courtside reporters, and this role was eventually cut prior to the women’s volleyball tournament.

Courtside Reporters

This season’s batch featured no holdovers and the first to feature men since Season 74. However, Adamson representative Nicole Sumagui was dismissed for poor performance and was replaced by predecessor Stef Monce for the rest of the men’s basketball tournament, and Armand Hernandez during the women’s volleyball tournament.

This year’s cast also featured Martie Bautista (Ateneo), Eileen Shi (La Salle), Sydney Crespo (FEU), Miguel Dypiangco (NU), Migs Gomez (UE), Agatha Uvero (UP) and Tonie Moreno (UST). Performance-wise it was satisfactory, but if not for the UAAP Insiders their potential would have been unleashed further.

The Entry of LIGA

Late January saw the launch of LIGA, the new cable channel of ABS-CBN’s Creative Programs Inc. This enabled ABS-CBN Sports to go deeper into UAAP live coverage as it aired the first game of men’s volleyball doubleheaders (plus second game of Sunday doubleheaders) as well as the finals of the softball and baseball tournaments.

Lack of First Semester Coverage

But while the second semester UAAP tournaments were extensively covered by ABS-CBN Sports, the first semester tournaments still leave a lot to be desired. The most noteworthy omission is women’s basketball, which for the most part played on the same day as their men’s basketball counterparts, yet only the finals were aired on S+A.

With the entry of LIGA, perhaps the time is now for the UAAP women’s basketball tournament to be taken seriously. Your call, ABS-CBN.

Overall, UAAP Season 80 broadcasts was good, but still not great. Yes, the slogan for the season was ‘Go for Great’, but in terms of coverage, it was still not above standard as any UAAP fan would want.

With Season 81 taking place in a few months’ time, there are still some kinks with which ABS-CBN Sports must address. That said, it will be interesting to see how the network will change its approach come next season.

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Philippines, Sports, television

FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup to Air on ESPN5

The Philippines’ premier preseason tournament for college basketball has found a new home.

When the 12th edition of the FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup kicks off on April 21, it will have a new television partner. For this season, ESPN5, via T5N and AksyonTV, will broadcast a select number of games plus the entirety of the playoffs.

Here is the game schedule of the upcoming FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup. All games will take place at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.

All seniors teams of the UAAP and NCAA will participate in the tournament. However, the biggest surprise came when the cadets of the Gilas Pilipinas national team announced that it will join the FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup, with each of its games to be treated as official matches and not mere exhibitions.

This will mark the first time that ESPN5 will cover live Philippine college basketball games since the rebrand last year. Prior to that, the then-Sports5 was home to the NCAA seniors basketball tournament from Seasons 88 to 90 (2012-15); this does not include the 2016 CESAFI which aired on AksyonTV but produced by VIVA.

It will also mark the return of the FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup to Philippine television for the first time since 2016. Last year none of its games were aired on television and were streamed live on Facebook instead.

While the games featuring the Gilas cadets will headline ESPN5’s coverage, it will also take a look at the legendary Ateneo-La Salle rivalry that will have new recruits getting their first taste of this long-running saga. In addition, old NCAA rivalries between San Beda and La Salle, and Ateneo and San Beda, will also be aired.

As for non-televised games, these are expected to air on the FilOil Flying V Sports’ Facebook page. Highlights of these games will also be featured on SportsCenter Philippines.

The FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup will run from April 21 to June 24.

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Live Blog: 2017 ASEAN Summit on ANC (Part II)

The 2017 ASEAN Summit is up and running, as heads of ASEAN nations as well as other world dignitaries converge to discuss various political issues that affect both their countries and the world. At around the same time, the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit also takes place, focusing on business concerns surrounding the ASEAN region.

The ABS-CBN News Channel and CNN Philippines are the primary channels that will cover in detail the ASEAN Summit. For this live blog, I will focus on ANC, so keep refreshing this blog for the latest updates on their coverage.

10:00 a.m.

The speech ends. Meanwhile, Peter Lundgreen is at the 8 Rockwell studio being interviewed by Annalisa Burgos.

Yes, 8 Rockwell studio is still open at 10:00 a.m.

10:10 a.m.

Outside, today has some uncommonly hot November weather. But inside the main ANC studio, Annalisa Burgos still looked as cool as a cucumber.

Annalisa is no stranger to big events such as the ASEAN Summit. She may be a relative newcomer on ANC, but journalism has been her calling card for years now.

10:20 a.m.

Not much activity right now. Inside the CCP, there’s plenty of dancing during the opening ceremony, while Annalisa does some recapping of this morning’s news.

10:25 a.m.

At the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit, Michelle Ong is live-tweeting the proceedings as we speak. Expect some video highlights from said event in the coming hours.

10:30 a.m.

ASEAN Summit protests are well underway. Stay safe, journalists on site.

10:35 a.m.

Live stream of the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit is available on the GoNegosyo Facebook page. If not, follow Michelle Ong’s tweets.

With all the news related to the ASEAN Summit going on, ANC is doing its best to keep viewers company. Thank goodness for social media in adding further context to the story.

10:45 a.m.

After another brief look at the headlines, ANC is now reairing Cathy Yang’s interview with George Barcelon. Not much going on right now.

In the meantime, didn’t we mention that Cathy is once again nominated for Best Anchor at the 2017 Asian Television Awards? She previously won three awards in the same category in the early 2000s, all while based in Hong Kong working for Bloomberg Asia.

10:55 a.m.

Now business has picked up anew. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is delivering his speech at the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit with the help of an interpreter.

Oh no, ANC cut short that speech a few minutes later. Commercial break time.

11:00 a.m.

Back at ANC’s coverage of the 2017 ASEAN Summit. And another summary of the headlines.

A plenary session among the ASEAN and world leaders is now underway.

11:10 a.m.

President Duterte now presiding the ASEAN Summit plenary session.

And they cut short his speech anew. Goodness gracious.

11:15 a.m.

After over four hours covering the live blog, a lot has taken place as far as interviews and live feeds are concerned. As lunch time draws near, activity slowed down somewhat.

In the meantime, enjoy the ‘replay’ of the headlines on ANC right now.

11:20 a.m.

ANC was about to go back to Medvedev’s address at Solaire but the speech came to an end. We will have to wait for the summary.

In the meantime, here is a spoiler of Cathy Yang’s interview with GoNegosyo’s Joey Concepcion.

11:30 a.m.

Cathy Yang is back live at Solaire, this time with Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala as guest. Looks like Cathy has quite a day ahead of her.

11:45 a.m.

Annalisa Burgos is about to wrap up her shift, so why not take another look at the headlines. A few minutes later, Cathy Yang has another guest in ICTSI’s Enrique Razon.

While Cathy interviews Mr. Razon, we can also point out that both are alumni of De La Salle University like yours truly. And the gymnasium where the Green Archers and other DLSU varsity teams practice was named after Mr. Razon’s father.

We can also mention that the Green Archers won last night against the Ateneo Blue Eagles to force a Final Four in the UAAP Season 80 men’s basketball.

In the meantime, enjoy some serious talk on improving the traffic situation with these two.

11:58 a.m.

Annalisa Burgos ends her shift. Now she can relax and breathe easily after a three-hour run inside the ANC studio.

In the meantime, I presume that Karmina Constantino will be coming up next.

12:05 p.m.

If baseball has the seventh-inning stretch, this live blog has the 12 o’clock stretch. Time to stretch a bit.

Back at ANC, Karmina Constantino is now on board, but not at the main ANC studio. She is now anchoring inside the ANC newsroom studio where many of their newscasts take place.

Oh, and Christian Esguerra is at the PICC where all the media partners are based right now. Not to mention that he took off his tie following his time at 8 Rockwell.

12:15 p.m.

Around this time, KC and Christian were talking about the ASEAN Summit and the latest news that took place today. This is like a mental lunch to me.

Speaking of lunch, time to serve some.

12:30 p.m.

Protests, protest and more protests.

12:35 p.m.

Wilnor Papa of Amnesty International is at the studio now, discussing ASEAN’s need to address the Rohingya crisis. Time to feed my brain some more.

12:50 p.m. 

KC and Christian are back to continue their conversation on the ASEAN Summit. This is starting to get more interesting.

If you are watching this coverage from the start, ANC has been utilizing the generic ASEAN 50 motif shortly after the end of ‘Headstart’ instead of the title cards of their programs. After all, this is a special coverage that will last the entire day.

1:00 p.m.

Cathy Yang’s interview with Joey Concepcion is now on the air. This is obviously recorded several hours earlier.

At this time, the ASEAN Summit is on a lunch break. They are expected to resume at around 2:00 p.m. today.

Stay tuned for Part III.

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Philippines, Sports, television

When UAAP Courtside Reporting Is Not a Safe Bet

It is not easy to be a courtside reporter.

After all, it is considered one of the most highly scrutinized positions in the world of sports broadcasting. The best people on the job are those who can relate well to the audience, speak clearly and articulately, and exude confidence whenever possible.

In ABS-CBN Sports’ coverage of the UAAP men’s basketball and women’s volleyball, a courtside reporter is hired not because he/she is pretty or handsome, but because the network wants them to represent the school with both enthusiasm and pride. Unfortunately, there are those who were simply not up to the task.

Last Saturday, ABS-CBN quietly replaced Nicole Sumagui with Stef Monce as Adamson University’s courtside reporter. No explanation was made regarding the change, but observant viewers saw that Sumagui stuttered at times, was tentative and lacked confidence in her abilities.

Sumagui was not the first courtside reporter to get the pink slip early in the season. There have been two such cases in which a UAAP courtside reporter was replaced before the season concluded.

Prior to UAAP Season 73 (2010-11), ABS-CBN assigned Karen Rozul to be the courtside reporter of National University. But the network replaced her with the late Maan Panganiban when they realized that Rozul was not confident enough for the job.

Two seasons later, NU endured some deja vu when the ineffective Muriel Orais was dismissed in favor of Steph Sy. Sy, like Stef Monce later on, had already exhausted her two-year eligibility, but ABS-CBN reinstated her for a third year due to this untimely circumstance.

For all the talk about the next Pia Arcangel, Lia Cruz, Riki Flores, Aaron Atayde, Nikko Ramos and Laura Lehmann, there are those like Karen Rozul, Muriel Orais and Nicole Sumagui who do not deserve to be in the same room. They may have survived the auditions, yet they failed to translate that into at least one year’s worth of on-the-job training for a future broadcasting career.

UAAP courtside reporting is not an easy task, but if one can survive and fulfill a dream, then it should bode well for their future career paths.  With the second round of men’s basketball plus a full slate of women’s volleyball still to come, all eyes are on the seven rookies and one returnee to see if they have what it takes to be a great UAAP courtside reporter.

Note: Aside from Stef Monce, this season’s roster of UAAP courtside reporters consist of Martie Bautista (Ateneo de Manila University), Eileen Shi (De La Salle University), Sydney Crespo (Far Eastern University), Miguel Dypiangco (National University), Migs Gomez (University of the East), Agatha Uvero (University of the Philippines) and Tonie Moreno (University of Sto. Tomas).

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FTT Year 2016 in Review: The 20 Stories That Define the Year in Media (Part III)

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2017, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article looks back at the 20 moments that define the Philippine media this year.

If you missed out on Part I and Part II of this series, click on the highlighted link for more information.

Here is Part III of the four-part series. These stories are arranged in no particular order.

Pinoy Boyband Superstar Answers To the Top

Last year, GMA created its own reality talent show for up-and-coming Filipino boybands, ‘To the Top’. This year, ABS-CBN struck back by bringing the ‘La Banda’ franchise to the Philippines under the name ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’.

Unfortunately for GMA, the popularity of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ far exceeded ‘To the Top’. The former constantly gained ratings of 30% or better while airing at a more convenient timeslot of 6:50 p.m., whereas the latter only mustered around 7-8% ratings while airing at a not-so attractive timeslot of 9:45-10:00 p.m.

Despite the success of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’, it remains to be seen if BoybandPH can become a more popular boyband than Top One Project ever was. That said, the key to both boybands at this point is to outsell each other in order to win the hearts of fans.

Delamar Leaves RX 93.1’s The Morning Rush

‘The Morning Rush’ on Monster RX 93.1 is an institution in Philippine FM radio, having aired continuously for over two decades. So when Delamar Arias decided to leave both the show and the station on July 29, listeners, or ‘rushers’, were stunned.

After all, Delamar, along with long-time partner Chico Garcia and recent addition Gino Quillamor, were instrumental in the show’s success, with the ‘Top 10’ segment becoming the most popular segment. Her departure left a glaring hole on ‘The Morning Rush’, one they have struggled to fill since.

Delamar was not the only high-profile departure from the station. A few weeks later, Bea Fabregas left RX to focus on hosting FOX Sports Philippines’ ‘Fox Sports Minute’ and ‘The GOAT’, while Karen Bordador was arrested for alleged drug possession and was de facto removed from the station.

The Launch of PBA Rush, Plus UFC on TV5 and Olympic Coverage

If Solar Entertainment has NBA Premium TV, then TV5 has its own channel for the PBA in PBA Rush. Launched prior to the 2016 Governors’ Cup, PBA Rush is considered the Filipino version of NBA TV, featuring live and archived PBA games plus special programs dedicated to the league.

The timing of PBA Rush’s launch couldn’t have come at an important time, as that year’s Governors’ Cup saw Barangay Ginebra San Miguel end an eight-year title drought at the expense of the Meralco Bolts. Ginebra’s win would have concluded PBA’s run with TV5, but instead the partnership between the two was renewed in time for the ongoing Philippine Cup.

TV5 also made a high-profile acquisition when it purchased the broadcast rights to the UFC, promising it to air live on its HYPER channel. Unfortunately, TV5’s coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics was a difficult one, as the network struggles to deal with its decline in programming quality.

Other Sports Stories on TV

ABS-CBN Sports replaced the UFC by focusing on local and regional mixed martial arts, namely the Alvin Aguilar-led URCC, and the Southeast Asia-based One Championship. They also brought in the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) as part of its continued commitment to local and regional sports.

Solar Sports dabbled into collegiate basketball by airing the NAASCU, while IBC-13 and AksyonTV aired the UCBL and CESAFI tournaments respectively. However, the biggest draws remain the NCAA and the UAAP, where the San Beda Red Lions and the De La Salle Green Archers won their respective championships.

Finally, in women’s volleyball, ABS-CBN Sports acquired the rights to the Shakey’s V-League, beginning a contentious rivalry between the V-League and the TV5-aired Philippine SuperLiga.

Be My Lady Reigns, Ryzza Mae’s Run Ends

‘Be My Lady’, topbilled by real-life couple Erich Gonzales and Daniel Matsunaga,was the top draw at the pre-noontime slot for much of this year. Airing for 221 episodes from January 18 to November 25, the series earned ratings of nearly 20%, besting the competition in the process.

The aforementioned competition included a pair of shows starring Ryzza Mae Dizon: ‘Princess in the Palace’, and ‘Calle Siete’. But with Ryzza already entering the pre-teen stage of her life, it was clear that she was no longer the charmingly cute presence of years past.

In the end, TAPE decided to cease starring her on the pre-noontime slot beginning October 24, and gave the BAES (along with Taki Sato) of ‘Eat Bulaga’ a lead role in ‘TROPS’.

Part IV of this four-part series is coming up tomorrow. Stay tuned.

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Philippines, Sports, television

With Loss of V-League, GMA’s Sports Hopes Disappear

It’s all but over for GMA in terms of sports.

This came after the Shakey’s V-League bolted to rival ABS-CBN earlier this week, leaving GMA without any sporting events to cover (unless one counts the boxing fights on GMA News TV’s ‘All Sports’ as an event). The new deal will see all of the games aired live on Sports+Action SD, HD and on livestream every Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays starting at 4:00 p.m.

GMA News TV had been the home of the Shakey’s V-League since 2013. When GMA inked a deal with the V-League and Sports Vision that year, it coincided with the sudden rise of volleyball in the country, capped off by a sold-out UAAP women’s volleyball final series between popular rivals Ateneo and La Salle.

Once the deal began, however, problems ensued. Games were still aired on a delayed basis, primarily due to News TV’s commitment to news programming, and although later tournaments saw live broadcasts, the lack of willingness from GMA and News TV proved hard to overcome.

In the end, the V-League allowed its contract with GMA to expire, and when it came time for a new television contract, they sought ABS-CBN Sports. It was a perfect fit, and with the latter having turned the UAAP women’s volleyball tournament into must-see TV, they are now expected to do the same for the V-League.

GMA’s lack of a sports division has been well-documented on From the Tube. As ABS-CBN and TV5 continued to make strides in airing some of the top sporting events in the country, GMA is left to lick their wounds wondering what might have been.

Considering their status as the No. 2 network in the country (sorry AGB Nielsen), GMA should have been keeping up with ABS-CBN in virtually every department. Instead, their lack of resources was exposed, and thanks to the impending return of ‘Encantadia’, expect more of their hidden revenue to go down the drain.

 

Now that the Shakey’s V-League is out of GMA, uncertainty looms in the northern corner of EDSA and Timog Avenue. A long, rainy season awaits for the Kapuso network, and without any big-name sporting events, the possibility of a GMA Sports division is now all but diminished.

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