Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Bristolmetrics: SportsCenter Poops All Over Mark Sanchez

Illustration for article titled Bristolmetrics: emSportsCenter/em Poops All Over Mark Sanchez

This is a regular feature breaking down, minute-by-minute, the content that appears on ESPN's 11 p.m. edition of SportsCenter throughout the week.


Total time: 352.25 minutes
Time (minus commercials): 254.25

NBA: 81.75 minutes (32.2%) (last week: 27.1%)
NFL: 79.25 (31.2%) (last week: 45.6%)
SportsCenter staples*: 37.75 (14.9%) (last week: 11.6%)
College basketball: 27.25 (10.7%) (last week: 3%)
College football: 17 (6.7%) (last week: 5.3%)
MLB: 7.5 (3%) (last week: 3%)
Other sports: 3.75 (1.5%) (last week: 4.4%)
NHL: 0 (0%) (last week: 0.1%)
Golf: 0 (0%) (last week: 0%)
NASCAR: 0 (0%) (last week: 6.4%)


*-Includes things like the "Top 10," "Encore," "What 2 Watch 4," etc.

New York Knicks (NBA): 19.25 (7.6%)
Dallas Cowboys (NFL): 17.25 (6.8%)
Syracuse Orange (college basketball): 6.75 (2.7%)
Toronto Blue Jays (MLB): 5.75 (2.3%)
Alabama Crimson Tide (college football): 4 (1.6%)

Rather than break down the amount of time a specific athlete or figure was covered, we counted how frequently names were mentioned in the transcripts from the week. The 15 most-mentioned sports people for Dec. 14-20:

LeBron James: 37
Kevin Durant: 32
Robert Griffin III: 24
Kobe Bryant: 24
Tyson Chandler: 20
Jim Boeheim: 20
Carmelo Anthony: 18
Ben Roethlisberger: 18
R.A. Dickey: 17
Jeremy Lin: 17
Adrian Peterson: 16
Russell Wilson: 15
Russell Westbrook: 13
Dwyane Wade: 13
Newtown: 11


Total time: 22,004.75 minutes
Time (minus commercials): 16,571

NFL: 3,681 (22.2%)
NBA: 3,167 minutes (19.1%)
MLB: 2,916.25 (17.6%)
SportsCenter staples: 2,150.75 (13.2%)
Other: 1,800.25 (11%)
College football: 1,190.75 (7.2%)
College basketball: 1,168.25 (7.1%)
NHL: 459 (2.8%)



SportsCenter covers the shootings in Newtown: It takes a truly national story for ESPN to look outside the sports world. The Dec. 14 edition of SportsCenter, the day of the Newtown massacre, opened with a moment of silence and featured reactions from some big-name athletes. Throughout the week, ESPN highlighted teams who paid tribute to the shooting victims. The rapid changes in tone (cue the somber SportsCenter theme) were jarring, but it was something that had to be mentioned, and ESPN did a solid job.


Oh God, Billy Crystal: Even though Crystal anchored the 6 p.m. edition of Dec. 19th's SportsCenter, ESPN was kind enough to give primetime viewers a three-minute behind-the-scenes look at Billy's time behind the desk. Why did Crystal host an episode of SportsCenter, you ask? Well, Billy had an awful movie to promote, and ESPN had several segments that were sponsored by Parental Guidance throughout the week.

ESPN piled on Mark Sanchez in one of their funniest montages of the year: Sanchez had one of his typical, dreadful games against the Titans, and was benched the following day. Instead of just relaying the news, ESPN went scorched earth. They spliced together a montage of his worst moments of the game, coupled with condemnation from Jon Gruden, who loves everyone. It concluded with Steve Young and Trent Dilfer becoming physically enraged by Sanchez's play, and potshots from additional ESPN commentators. You got the feeling the person who put this together was a seething Jets fan who had been waiting for this moment. Take a look at the Sanchez montage, because it's pretty amazing.

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