Marquee Sports Network announces offseason programming
The lineup includes a weekly show covering offseason news that starts next month and a documentary on Hall of Famer Billy Williams that will debut in the winter.
As the TV home of the Blackhawks, Bulls and White Sox, NBC Sports Chicago doesn’t have an offseason. As the TV home of the Cubs, Marquee Sports Network does.
But that doesn’t mean it goes into hibernation. Marquee announced its Cubs programming plans for the offseason, which include new shows, a new documentary and new classic games.
“Cubs 360” will air weekly starting in November, covering offseason news. It will provide on-site coverage of the winter meetings in December in Orlando, Florida. The network also will present a documentary on Billy Williams that will debut in the winter.
“Icons of the Ivy” returns with a series involving players from the 2007-08 Cubs. The roundtable show launched this season with a discussion among five Cubs Hall of Famers. The network is discussing more shows, possibly involving the 1984 and ’89 teams.
A new series of “Cubs Classics” will feature Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg as part of a day of programming dedicated to him. Ryan Dempster’s “Off the Mound” show already has aired a new episode that featured an appearance by Hall of Fame announcer Bob Costas.
Doug Glanville’s show, “Class is in Session,” will examine minor-league baseball and the NIL ruling in college sports. Marquee also is airing Illinois State football home games and will show area college basketball teams when available. It also will broadcast ACC football and basketball games.
The Sky’s WNBA Finals victory over the Mercury was the league’s most-watched championship series since 2017. The four games drew an average audience of 548,000.
The most-watched game of the series was Game 2, the Mercury’s overtime victory, which averaged 789,000 viewers and peaked at 1 million. The Sky’s series clincher Sunday averaged 417,000 viewers going up against the NFL.
Chicago was the top market across the four games, averaging a 1.8 household rating (one ratings point equals more than 31,000 HH). That’s double the rating in Phoenix, which tied for second with Hartford-New Haven at 0.9.
- CBS is giving the Bears-Buccaneers game Sunday national treatment, putting lead voice Jim Nantz, analyst Tony Romo and reporter Tracy Wolfson on the call. That likely has more to do with CBS being gifted a game with Tom Brady. The network’s top crew also called Dolphins-Bucs on Oct. 10.
- Blackhawks TV voice Pat Foley finally made his regular-season debut Thursday on NBC Sports Chicago. He’ll call the game Sunday with Eddie Olczyk and Wednesday with Patrick Sharp while Olczyk is on TNT duty. Visit the Blackhawks’ website to follow their fluid broadcast crews.