Month: May 2017

Shannon Sharpe, Joy Taylor and Skip Bayless on UNDISPUTED

SKIP AND SHANNON: UNDISPUTED Live from The 2017 NBA Finals

New York – The 2017 NBA Finals are fast approaching, and FS1 is ready for tip-off. From high-profile guests to on-site coverage, FS1’s daily studio shows offer viewers a vast array of opinions and analysis throughout the series.

Special editions of SKIP AND SHANNON: UNDISPUTED air live from The Finals beginning Thursday, June 1 at 9:30 AM ET in advance of Game 1, as the reigning NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers travel to Oakland to take on the Golden State Warriors.

UNDISPUTED originates live from the plank in Oakland’s famous Jack London Square on Thursday and Friday, June 2, from 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM ET.

The following week, UNDISPUTED travels to Cleveland and sets up shop in Gateway Plaza, just outside the Cavs’ Quicken Loans Arena, airing live on-site from Tuesday, June 6 through Friday, June 9 from 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM ET.

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FOX Sports Owns the Fall with Monster College Football Schedule

Ohio State-Michigan, Texas-USC, Bedlam and Conference Championships Highlight Network’s Best-Ever Fall Lineup
Big Ten Regular Season Comes to FOX Along with Full Big 12 and Pac-12 Slates

NEW YORK, NY – FOX Sports owns the fall, highlighted by the network’s best-ever college football schedule released today. The impressive lineup features top games from the Big Ten, Big 12 and Pac-12 conferences, including several of the nation’s most-anticipated games such as Ohio State at Michigan, Texas at USC and Oklahoma at Oklahoma State, plus the Big Ten and Big 12 championship games.

“By adding the best games from the Big Ten Conference to our already impressive portfolio of top contests from the Big 12 and Pac-12, and putting more of those games on broadcast television than ever before, FOX Sports truly solidifies itself as a leader in the college football landscape,” said FOX Sports President, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Producer Eric Shanks. “With the MLB Postseason and the best NFL regular-season schedule of any network, we are thrilled to be the top destination for sports fans this fall.”

For the first time ever, FOX Sports presents “The Game,” annually the biggest event on the college football regular-season calendar. Ohio State and Michigan renew their rivalry at the Big House on Saturday, Nov. 25, at 12:00 PM ET on the FOX broadcast network with a full one-hour edition of the FOX COLLEGE FOOTBALL KICKOFF pregame show live from Ann Arbor at 11:00 AM ET. That historic matchup is part of a huge weekend for FOX Sports, which also includes the Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving Day as well as Iowa at Nebraska in the Heroes Game, plus in-state showdowns between Texas Tech and Texas, Cal and UCLA and Baylor at TCU on Friday, Nov. 24.

The FOX broadcast network airs the first rematch of the 2006 BCS National Championship Game between Texas and USC on Saturday, Sept. 16, at 8:30 PM ET. The Longhorns, led by new head coach Tom Herman, march into The Coliseum to face preseason Heisman favorite Sam Darnold and the Trojans in the teams’ first meeting since Matt Leinart and Vince Young held the spotlight in the Rose Bowl more than a decade ago. The football frenzy continues Sunday, Sept. 17, with AMERICA’S GAME OF THE WEEK featuring the Dallas Cowboys at Denver Broncos.

Several other top conference matchups call FOX Sports home in 2017, including Bedlam on Saturday, Nov. 4, as Oklahoma State hosts Oklahoma in what has been a meeting of the Big 12’s top two teams each of the past two seasons. One week prior, on Saturday, Oct. 28, Ohio State looks to exact revenge on Penn State, who handed the Buckeyes their only regular-season loss a year ago. That contest kicks off at 3:30 PM ET on FOX and leads into another great fall tradition – the World Series on FOX, which set records in 2016 as the Chicago Cubs broke their 108-year Championship drought.

This year, the Big 12 heads to AT&T Stadium in Arlington for the conference’s first championship game since 2010, while the Big Ten returns to Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, the site of the most exciting conference championship game in each of the last two years, including Penn State’s epic second-half comeback over Wisconsin last season. Football fans can go back to their couches on Sunday for a FOX NFL doubleheader featuring the Green Bay Packers, New York Giants, Atlanta Falcons and more.

Other top games on FOX and FS1 include:

  • Week 1 features some of the top quarterbacks from around the country, including reigning Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson from Louisville, two-time Heisman finalist Baker Mayfield out of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph, UCLA’s Josh Rosen, Washington’s Jake Browning and more.
  • Friday, Sept. 1: Rutgers hosts Washington in the first-ever Big Ten regular-season home game played on FS1 at 8:00 PM ET.
  • Saturday, Sept. 2: Heisman Trophy winner, Louisville’s Lamar Jackson faces Purdue at Indianapolis’s Lucas Oil Stadium at 7:30 PM ET on FOX. The Boilermakers are led by new head coach Jeff Brohm, a former Cardinals quarterback.
  • Saturday, Sept. 2: The biggest story of the off-season, Tom Herman begins his tenure as Texas’s head coach in a home game against Maryland at 12:00 PM ET on FS1.
  • Sunday, Sept. 3: In a rare Sunday primetime game, UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen is back from injury to lead his team against Texas A&M in a matchup that went into overtime last year. Kickoff is set for 7:30 PM ET on the FOX broadcast network.
  • Saturday, Sept. 9: Head coach Willie Taggart faces his first big test as Oregon’s head coach as the Ducks host Nebraska at 4:30 PM ET on FOX.
  • Saturday, Sept. 23: Led by high-profile coaches Mark Dantonio and Brian Kelly, Michigan State hosts Notre Dame at 8:00 PM ET on FOX as both teams look to bounce back from disappointing seasons and regain their status as two of the nation’s preeminent programs.

The 2017 FOX college football schedule includes nearly 90 games across the network’s family of channels, including more than 30 games set for broadcast television – more than ever before. College football games on the FOX broadcast network, FS1, FS2, FOX Sports Regional Networks and FOX Deportes can also be seen on FOX Sports GO. FOX Sports GO is available on FOXSportsGO.com or on the FOX Sports GO app, which can be downloaded from iTunes, Google Play, Amazon App Store and Windows Store. Streaming is available on several connected devices, including Apple TV, Android TV, FireTV, Roku, Chromecast and Xbox One.

In addition to games on the FOX Sports family of networks, BTN also carries a full slate of games from the Big Ten Conference. Visit BTN.com for more information.

The 2017 college football schedule on FOX, FS1, FS2, FOX Sports Regional Networks and FOX Deportes is attached below. The remainder of the schedule will be announced as the season progresses.

For more information on FOX Sports’ college football coverage, including photos, bios and updated schedules, visit FOX Sports Press Pass.

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FOX NASCAR at Dover International Speedway Quotes & Programming Schedule

All Three NASCAR Series Live on FS1 from Delaware Saturday and Sunday
Dover Kicks Off Four-Race Stretch of MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES Races on FS1 to Conclude FOX Sports’ 2017 Season

CHARLOTTE, NC – All three NASCAR national series are live on FS1 this weekend from Dover International Speedway, with FOX Sports set to offer 20 hours of live action from the one-mile concrete circuit. Included are FS1’s live race coverage of the MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES (Sunday, June 4 at 1:00 PM ET), the NASCAR XFINITY SERIES (Saturday, June 3 at 1:00 PM ET) and the NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES (Friday, June 2 at 5:30 PM ET). FS1 serves as the home for all four remaining MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES races on FOX Sports’ 2017 schedule (Dover, Pocono, Michigan and Sonoma).

During the week, FS1’s NASCAR RACE HUB, NASCAR’s most-watched daily news and information program, continues Mondays through Thursdays at 6:00 PM ET. Additionally, the NASCAR RACE HUB PODCAST is available on iTunes, SoundCloud and Google Play Music.

Below are programming information and quotes from FOX NASCAR analysts Larry McReynolds and Michael Waltrip.

MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES

  • Date/Time: Sunday, June 4 (1:00 PM ET)
  • Network: FS1
  • Announcers: Mike Joy, Hall of Famer and three-time champion Darrell Waltrip, four-time champ Jeff Gordon and Larry McReynolds
  • Pit reporters: Jamie Little, Vince Welch and Matt Yocum
  • Hosts: Chris Myers and Michael Waltrip
  • Pre-race:
    • NASCAR RACEDAY (11:30 AM ET on FS1), hosted by Chris Myers with analysts Darrell Waltrip and Gordon; reporters Little, Welch, Yocum and Kenny Wallace
      • NASCAR RACEDAY features a piece on FOX NASCAR race director Artie Kempner’s annual Drive for Autism golf tournament, held Thursday in Wilmington, Del., and live interviews with Austin Dillon, Matt Kenseth and Kyle Larson.

NASCAR XFINITY SERIES

  • Date/Time: Saturday, June 3 (1:00 PM ET)
  • Network: FS1
  • Announcers: Adam Alexander, Michael Waltrip and driver analyst Joey Logano
  • Pit reporters: Chris Neville, Jamie Little and Matt Yocum
  • Pre-race: NASCAR RACEDAY-XFINITY (12:30 PM ET on FS1); hosted by Shannon Spake with analysts Michael Waltrip and Larry McReynolds; reporters Kenny Wallace and Chris Neville
  • Hosts: Spake and McReynolds
  • Post-race: 3:00 PM ET on FS1

NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES

  • Date/Time: Friday, June 2 (5:30 PM ET)
  • Network: FS1
  • Announcers: Vince Welch, Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip
  • Pit reporters: Hermie Sadler and Kaitlyn Vincie
  • Pre-race: NCWTS SETUP (5:00 PM ET on FS1); hosted by John Roberts with analyst Todd Bodine; reporters Sadler and Vincie
  • NCWTS SETUP features a look back at Kyle Busch’s win two weeks ago at Charlotte; a flashback to Matt Crafton’s 2016 win at Dover; and a piece on Red Horse Racing.

FOX NASCAR QUOTES

On the emotion for Richard Childress seeing the No. 3 back in Victory Lane:
“It had been 591 races since the No. 3 went to Victory Lane (October 2000 at Talladega with Dale Earnhardt) in a Cup race. I was still working at RCR as a crew chief that day. While the win at Phoenix with Ryan Newman earlier this year was huge for RCR, Richard Childress told me they still needed to get the No. 3 back to Victory Lane. Now they have done that, and I know it’s a huge weight lifted off of not only the team but the family.”
–Larry McReynolds

On Kyle Busch’s short post-race press conference Sunday night at Charlotte:
“I have so much love and respect for Kyle Busch’s passion and emotion. Anything short of winning is unacceptable to him. I love his honesty and hope that doesn’t change. But when I look at what happened in the media center, I want to say, ‘Maybe your presentation could be tweaked just a bit.’ However, I think there may be some frustration on his part, even though he had an unbelievable two weeks at Charlotte. It has been 27 races since he went to Victory Lane in a Cup car (Indianapolis last July), and I think that’s part of his frustration.”
–Larry McReynolds

On the favorite to win at Dover:
“Jimmie Johnson has always been good at Dover. I’m also waiting for a Matt Kenseth breakout and could be one of the ones to watch. While the kids have mostly been the story this season, look at a couple of the veterans as the ones you have to beat at Dover.”
–Michael Waltrip

On the biggest disappointment so far in 2017:
“Matt Kenseth has run into some trouble and hasn’t performed like I had hoped he would. But I still see speed in that car in practice, so he has potential to break out of that. Also Ryan Blaney and Erik Jones haven’t had the results I had expected. I thought they would have won by now. I also thought Chase Elliott would have won by now, so they all need to figure out why their results don’t match their speed.”
–Michael Waltrip

On the biggest surprise of 2017:
“This may sound strange because, while I am disappointed in his results and put him in the ‘biggest disappointment’ category, Ryan Blaney also has been one of the bright spots of this year. Bringing the Wood Brothers back to prominence, sitting on poles and running up front – those moments have been some of the most satisfying because I know how hard that team has worked and what the Wood Brothers have meant to the sport. Plus, although Daniel Suarez is very inexperienced, he has run up front and surprised a lot of folks.”
-Michael Waltrip

On the success of Martin Truex Jr. in 2017:
“They’re executing better, especially on pit road. For a majority of the Coca-Cola 600, they were in their own zip code. That team is just as fast as the last two years but is cleaning up the mistakes that had kept them out of Victory Lane. They’re executing, they are fast everywhere and they’ll be fast this weekend at Dover. They are going to be very dangerous when we get to the playoffs.”
–Larry McReynolds

FOX NASCAR AT DOVER INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
PROGRAMMING SCHEDULE
(All times live/Eastern unless otherwise indicated & subject to change)

Friday, June 2
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES practice (9:30-10:30 AM) (FS2)
MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES practice (10:30 AM-12:00 PM) (FS2)
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES final practice (1:30-2:30 PM) (FS1)
NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES qualifying (2:30-3:30 PM) (FS1)
MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES qualifying (3:30-5:00 PM) (FS1)
NCWTS SETUP (5:00-5:30 PM) (FS1)
NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES racing (5:30-7:30 PM) (FS1)

Saturday, June 3
MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES practice (9:00-10:00 AM) (FS1)
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES qualifying (10:00-11:00 AM) (FS1)
NASCAR RACE HUB WEEKEND EDITION (11:00-11:30 AM) (FS1)
MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES final practice (11:30 AM-12:30 PM) (FS1)
NASCAR RACEDAY-XFINITY (12:30-1:00 PM) (FS1)
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES Racing (1:00-3:00 PM) (FS1)
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES post-race (3:00-3:30 PM) (FS1)

Sunday, June 4
NASCAR RACEDAY (11:30 AM-1:00 PM) (FS1)
MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES racing (1:00-4:30 PM) (FS1)

Dominick Cruz UFC desk

Former UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz Joins Brian Stann and Jon Anik to Call UFC 212: ALDO VS. HOLLOWAY

Featherweight Contender Cub Swanson is FS1 Desk Analyst with Middleweight Champion Michael Bisping and Former Light Heavyweight Champion Rashad Evans

LOS ANGELES, CA – Former UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz (@DominickCruz) joins analyst Brian Stann (@BrianStann) and blow-by-blow announcer Jon Anik (@Jon_Anik) to call UFC 212: ALDO VS. HOLLOWAY on Saturday, June 3 live from Brazil. Santiago Ponzinibbio (@SPonzinibbioMMA), Troy Santiago (@TroySantiagoTV) and Mario Delgado (@mariodelgadorzm) have the call in Spanish on FOX Deportes.

In addition, featherweight contender Cub Swanson (@CubSwanson), middleweight champion Michael Bisping (@Bisping) and former light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans (@SugaRashadEvans) work as desk analysts with host Karyn Bryant (@KarynBryant) for the FS1 UFC 212 WEIGH-IN, PREFIGHT and POSTFIGHT SHOWS from FOX Sports’ Los Angeles studios. Reporter Laura Sanko (@Laura_Sanko) interviews fighters on-site.

One of the most heavily anticipated featherweight fights comes to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Saturday as champion Jose Aldo (26-2) and interim champ Max Holloway (17-3) unify the 145-pound crown in the main event of UFC 212. UFC’s first featherweight champion, Aldo, ruled the division with an iron fist for more than five years. Now back on top for his second reign, Aldo faces Hawaii’s Holloway, a dynamic competitor who is riding a 10-fight winning streak.

FOX UFC analyst Bisping believes the title fight will be a close one: “Both these fighters are evenly matched. This is the first time since fighting Conor [McGregor] that Aldo fights a pure striker in Max Holloway. Max won’t be looking for takedown against Jose. He’ll be happy to stand and trade strikes with him. Holloway has height, reach, youth and skills to win the fight, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to win. Jose Aldo is a technical genius on his feet.” Watch Bisping and Gilbert Melendez’s preview of UFC 212 from last Sunday’s FS1 UFC FIGHT NIGHT POSTFIGHT SHOW here.

The two-hour UFC 212 PRELIMS on FS1 and FOX Deportes begin at 8:00 PM ET and feature four action-packed bouts. No. 3-ranked bantamweight Raphael Assuncao (24-5) faces big-time UFC signing, Marlon Moraes (18-4-1), who hasn’t lost in nearly 6 years. Middleweight Antonio Carlos Junior (8-2, 1NC) squares off with Eric Spicely (10-2), while No. 10-ranked bantamweight Johnny Eduardo (28-10) and Matthew Lopez (9-1) go head-to-head. Plus, No. 13 Iuri Alcantara (34-7, 1NC) and Brian Kelleher (16-7) open the PRELIMS with an exciting bantamweight bout.

Saturday’s coverage begins on FS1 (7:00 PM ET) with the UFC 212 PREFIGHT SHOW hosted by Bryant, with Bisping, Swanson, Evans and Sanko. The action wraps up immediately following the main event with the FS1 UFC 212 POSTFIGHT SHOW. The UFC 212 WEIGH-IN SHOW takes place on Friday, June 2 (6:00 PM ET) on FS2 with Bryant, Bisping and Evans.

On Wednesday (8:00 PM ET, FS1), UFC TONIGHT’s Kenny Florian and guest host Bisping preview UFC 212 and interview interim champ Holloway. They also catch up with legend Vitor Belfort about his final UFC fight at UFC 212.

Leading up to UFC 212, fighters give a behind-the-scenes look at their fight week on PROcast, all-access content on the FOX Sports PROcast and FOX UFC social pages. FOXSports.com features UFC 212 preview articles leading up to the fight. On the popular FOXSports.com podcast “Fight Society,” hosts Damon Martin and RJ Clifford preview the fight card and interview Holloway and Assuncao. The podcast is available on iTunes and Soundcloud. Follow @UFConFOX on Facebook and Twitter to get a look at fight week and throughout the #UFC212 fights Saturday.

Fans can live stream the UFC shows on FOX Sports GO, available in English or Spanish through the FS1, FS2 or FOX Deportes feeds. The shows are available on desktop at FOXSportsGO.com and through the app store, or connected devices including Apple TV, Android TV, Fire TV, Xbox One and Roku. In addition, all programs are also available on FOX Sports on SiriusXM channel 83 on satellite radios and on the SiriusXM app.

For notes, coverage, bios, photography and more, visit the FOX UFC page on FOX Sports Press Pass.

FOX SPORTS UFC PROGRAMMING SCHEDULE

DATE TIME (ET) EVENT NET*
Wednesday,

May 31

8:00 PM UFC TONIGHT FS1
Friday,

June 2

6:00 PM FS1 UFC 212 WEIGH-IN SHOW FS2
Saturday,

June 3

7:00 PM FS1 UFC 212 PREFIGHT SHOW FS1
Saturday,

June 3

8:00 PM FS1 UFC 212 PRELIMS FS1 / FOX Deportes
Saturday,

June 3

1:00 AM FS1 UFC 212 POSTFIGHT SHOW FS1

*All programs also available on FOX Sports GO and FOX Sports on SiriusXM channel 83.

 

FOX Sports Virtual Suite_2017 UEFA Champions League Final

FOX Sports to Offer UEFA Champions League Final in Virtual Reality through FOX Sports VR App

FOX Sports continues its effort to deliver major sporting events in virtual reality, this year adding the UEFA Champions League final from Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, to the growing list of offerings. Once again, teaming with LiveLike, FOX Sports offers multiple camera angles of the title match, as well as statistics and pre-game VOD features through the FOX SPORTS VR app.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s Real Madrid clashes with defensive powerhouse Juventus in the UEFA Champions League final live on FOX on Saturday, June 3 (2:00 PM ET).

The FOX SPORTS VR app can be enjoyed without any special VR equipment through the interactive, 360-degree viewing experience built specifically for mobile devices, or with a Gear VR or cardboard headset. Fans can access this FOX Sports VR “virtual suite” by downloading and installing the FOX SPORTS VR app and signing in with their television provider credentials.

Over the last year, FOX Sports has offered more than a dozen major events in VR, including Super Bowl LI, the 2016 & 2017 Big East Men’s Basketball Tournaments, the 2016 U.S. Open Championship, the 2016 MLS Cup, the 2016 Bundesliga season opener, the 2016 Big Ten Football Championship and a PBC heavyweight title fight.

For more information on FOX Sports’ extensive 2017 soccer offerings, please visit FOX Sports Press Pass.

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FOX Sports Unveils Coverage Plans for FIFA CONFEDERATIONS CUP RUSSIA 2017

All 16 Matches Televised Live

LOS ANGELES, CA – FOX Sports today unveils coverage plans for its first ever presentation of the FIFA CONFEDERATIONS CUP RUSSIA 2017 beginning Saturday, June 17, 2017 across the FOX Sports family of networks. David Neal, Vice President of Production and FIFA World Cup Executive Producer, FOX Sports, leads the tournament’s production and is supported by the team that worked on FOX Sports’ critically acclaimed coverage of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015 and the historic 2016 COPA AMERICA CENTENARIO: The Championship of the Americas.

“As the premier destination for soccer in America, FOX Sports is looking forward to delivering world-class production and unparalleled coverage of the FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017,” said Neal. “We have more than 62 hours devoted to the tournament and will soon be announcing an incredible roster of talent with big-name soccer personalities from the U.S. and around the world, as we use this opportunity to fine-tune our plans for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.”

FOX Sports televises all 16 Confederations Cup matches live from Russia from June 17 to July 2 across its portfolio of networks. FS1 carries 12 matches with two each appearing on the FOX broadcast network and FS2. In addition to live game action, FOX Sports offers daily pre- and postgame studio coverage, plus 10 editions of FIFA CONFEDERATIONS CUP TONIGHT, an hour-long show offering analysis and commentary of the day’s events.

The FIFA Confederations Cup, also known as “The Tournament of Champions,” is a dress rehearsal for the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 and is comprised of eight teams, winners of each of the six FIFA confederation championships (UEFA, CONMEBOL, CONCACAF, CAF, AFC and OFC) along with the reigning FIFA World Cup champion and the host nation. The 2017 edition includes host Russia, 2014 FIFA World Cup winner Germany, CONMEBOL Copa America champion Chile, 2015 CONCACAF Cup winner Mexico, UEFA Euro champion Portugal, OFC Nations Cup winner New Zealand, AFC Asian Cup holder Australia and CAF Africa Cup winner Cameroon. The eight teams are split into two groups with two teams from each group advancing to the semifinals.

Host nation Russia opens the tournament against New Zealand on Saturday, June 17 at 10:00 AM ET on FS1. The next day, Mexico squares off against Portugal at 9:30 AM ET on FS1. Other notable group stage matches include Germany-Chile on Thursday, June 22 (FS1, 1:00 PM ET) and Mexico-Russia on Saturday, June 24 (FOX, 10:00 AM ET). Semifinal coverage airs Wednesday, June 28 (FS1, 1:00 PM ET) and Thursday, June 29 (FS2, 1:00 PM ET). The third-place and final matches are set for Saturday, July 2 on FS1 (7:00 AM ET and 1:00 PM ET). The full schedule can be found here.

All matches can be live streamed via FOX Sports GO and FOX Soccer 2Go. FOX Sports GO is available on FOXSportsGO.com or on the FOX Sports GO app, which can be downloaded from iTunes, Google Play, Amazon App Store and Windows Store. Streaming is also now available on several connected devices, including Apple TV, Android TV, FireTV, Roku, Chromecast and Xbox One. In addition, select matches are available on FOX Sports on SiriusXM channel 83 on satellite radios and on the SiriusXM app.

All FOX soccer information, including biographies, photographs and archived press releases are available on FOX Sports Press Pass.

Michael Bisping

UFC TONIGHT Quotes – Bisping on Interim Middleweight Title Fight

Bisping picks Gustafsson to beat Teixeira: “I see him staying on the outside, using the reach and range, and getting a decision win.”

LOS ANGELES, CA – On UFC TONIGHT, host Kenny Florian and guest host Michael Bisping preview the upcoming FS1 UFC FIGHT NIGHT: GUSTAFSSON VS. TEIXEIRA and also interview middleweight Gegard Mousasi. Plus, Karyn Bryant adds reports.

UFC TONIGHT guest host Michael Bisping on the UFC announcing an interim middleweight title fight: “I was supposed to fight Georges St-Pierre for the title. Unfortunately, I do have a knee injury. I spoke to Dana White and he told me there will be an interim title between Robert Whittaker and Yoel Romero, but they’re not fighting for my title. Romero and Whittaker are fighting and one of them gets a participation award. Listen, I just had knee surgery and it hasn’t been too long. I defended my belt less than six months ago and it’s going to be a few more months until I can fight again. I think it’s premature, but the UFC has to do what they have to do and it’ll solidify the next number-one contender who I’ll fight. It’s an incredible fight. And good for me, one of them has to lose.”

Bisping on White saying his fight with Georges St-Pierre is off: “I don’t know. In October they offered me GSP and I said yes. But then it was off. Then in February, I get a call and it’s on. I did a press conference with GSP to promote the fight. Now they say it’s off again. I spoke with Georges and he said he’d still like to do it. But the UFC says it’s off. As far as I’m concerned, we have a deal. But if it’s off, I’ll move on. I’m the champion and that’s what I do. I’ll fight the next guy. I’ll fight the winner of Romero vs. Whittaker.”

VIDEO: Georges St-Pierre and Michael Bisping may not fight after all
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcgvPYkLASk

UFC TONIGHT host Kenny Florian on if Cody Garbrandt’s back injury will be serious: “Back injuries are dangerous and one eventually retired me. They are extremely painful. It can really paralyze you. For Garbrandt, he has to do this right, do his rehab and take his time coming back.”

Bisping on if Demetrious Johnson should fight TJ Dillashaw next: “Demetrious, what are you doing? He’s one of the best in the UFC. People aren’t tuning in to see you fight. This would be the former bantamweight champion vs. the current flyweight champion and is a great fight. It’ll give DJ a chance to prove to everyone he’s the best in the world. DJ, take the fight.”

Florian on Johnson’s lack of interest in fighting Dillashaw: “This is a legacy fight for him. But it’s hard to tell if DJ doesn’t want this fight or if it’s a negotiation tactic.”

Bisping on Glover Teixeira headlining against Alexander Gustafsson: “Teixeira, when he came in to the UFC, had a lot of hype, Chuck Liddell said he’d be the next champion, but he hasn’t achieved that yet. He’s got incredible knockout power. He’s got great Brazilian jiu-jitsu on the ground. He’s dangerous in all areas. Gustafsson is tall and will need to move around to make it hard for Teixeira to land on him. But in his last fight, he stayed in the pocket and allowed himself to get hit. He can’t do that against Glover. He hits too hard.”

Florian on Gustafsson vs. Teixeira: “In Glover’s last fight, he was knocked out by Anthony Johnson. I want to see how he’s going to come back. Is he going to be gun shy or are we going to see the Teixeira who plods forward, gets on the inside and destroys his opponent to the body and then takes the head off. He’s got knockout power and is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt as well. This is a tough matchup. If Gustafsson isn’t healthy, that will lead to his demise. He has to use his footwork, use his range and use the jab very well. If he does that, Teixeira will get tired.”

Florian on Gustafsson’s keys to victory: “He’s very rangy and has a great jab. He needs to use the amazing footwork and get in and get out, especially with his lateral movement. He needs to use the jab. And finally, he needs to stop the takedown. He does not want to be on his back against Glover.”

Bisping on Teixeira’s keys to victory: “Glover is a hard hitting Brazilian. He’s very dangerous wherever the fights go. He needs to cut off the Octagon to close the space. He needs to get inside and use his shots. Plus, he needs to land the takedown, use his ground and pound and look for a submission.”

Bisping picks Gustafsson over Teixeira: “If his back is good and his footwork is back, I see him staying on the outside, using the reach and range, and he’ll get a decision win.”

VIDEO: Alexander Gustafsson vs. Glover Teixeira Preview
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UWCui2hmg8

Gegard Mousasi on his UFC contract offers: “They should pay me. I’m a co-main event all the time, so it’s not like people don’t know me. I think I earned it. Don’t tell me it’s a fair sport. It should have to do with rankings. I’m up there. I’ve fought more than 10 years. I’ve earned it.”

Mousasi on not getting the shot at the interim title: “I thought I was ranked higher than Whittaker. He’s skipping three spots. I don’t understand it. But I think USADA time is a different time now.”

Mousasi on saying Bisping is the weakest in the middleweight division: “Michael is tough in the Octagon. Outside he’s a picking cherry, picking his opponents.”

Mousasi on who he fights next: “There’s only one guy left. Luke Rockhold. That’s the fight the UFC wants to make. But it’s taking a long time. I think that’s a fight fans would like. I have a month and a half left on my contract, then I can go talk to other people.”

VIDEO: Interview: Gegard Mousasi: ‘It’s not like people don’t know me’
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=291p3etrwOE

Florian on Francis Ngannou’s potential: “He’s an absolute monster. He’s got so much talent, power and speed for a heavyweight. I think this is a guy who can go all the way and be a champion. But I just don’t want to see him pushed too quickly. He’s only going to get better.”

Florian on a Travis Browne comeback: “He’s been inconsistent lately. He’s been changing training camps for the last couple years. I think he needs to find out what works for him. If he can get it back together, he can get back on track.”

VIDEO: Which UFC fighters are on the rise?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5g7hTB70SLI

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FOX NASCAR’s Hammond, Spake Bring Family Perspective, Pride to Memorial Day Race Weekend

Grandchildren of World War II Vets Continue to Honor Military Ties in Personal Way

An overwhelming sense of national pride … that familiar lump in your throat … even unexpected tears …

Anyone who has been to Charlotte Motor Speedway on Memorial Day Weekend knows how emotional it is to witness the solemn, yet beautiful, pageantry of the military pre-race ceremonies.

Count FOX Sports’ Shannon Spake and Jeff Hammond among those profoundly moved by the sight of 5,000 active service members at the track. Both embrace personal emotions during those moments, and consider themselves fortunate their family members returned home from service, while America pauses to pay tribute to those who have fallen.

To the Coca-Cola 600 (live on FOX on Sunday, May 29 at 6:00 PM ET), Spake brings the perspective of a childhood lived with a military family. Hers includes a World War II Army veteran-grandfather who earned a Silver and Bronze Star (and was among the Army men that secured the area around the USS Missouri for the Japanese surrender to General MacArthur); a father who flew F-4 fighter jets and served during the Vietnam War; and a mother who was a naval cadet. Hammond grew up the son and grandson of Navy men and went on to spend much of his adult life honoring the military in multiple trips overseas to visit U.S. troops.

“It’s incredibly moving to see the soldiers at Charlotte Motor Speedway enter our world for the weekend,” Spake said. “I am enormously touched each time because I know how much my grandfather, father and mother sacrificed for our country. My grandfather, Army Corporal Don Speacht, played a large role in major World War II battles, and he saw many of his friends fall. He is 92 and still has nightmares about the war. For me, the pageantry and military ceremonies this weekend are beautiful and moving because I see the military from a different set of eyes, having lived it through their experiences.”

Hammond, a former two-time championship crew chief and current FOX NASCAR analyst, also has a different perspective on the armed services because of his father and grandfather’s service. His grandfather was a lieutenant commander on a battleship in World War II, while his father served in the Navy and Air Force.

“I love hanging out with our soldiers at Charlotte, but to visit them where they are serving, like Bosnia, Korea, Germany and Iraq, and to see the smiles on their faces when we talk about our two worlds, truly is what I am at the core,” said Hammond, who first began working with the military in 1976. “I used to think we in NASCAR sacrifice because we go, go, go and don’t take care of our families like we should and don’t see our kids until they’re asleep, but a military member’s thrill is getting to FaceTime their families while they are cooking dinner. That’s a reality check. Those are two entirely different worlds with no comparison between the two.”

Spake’s grandfather served in the Army from 1943-1946 and was part of its first organized Airborne unit. Her father, Lieutenant Colonel Don Speacht, served 10 years active duty in the Marines, with four months in combat flying F-4 fighter jets over Cambodia in 1973 and an additional 13 years as a reservist. He met her mother, Valerie Speacht, while she was a naval cadet in Meridian, Miss. Spake was born and spent the first few years of her life there and on military bases in Quantico, Va., and Beaufort, S.C.

The mother of twin seven-year-old boys makes a point to impress upon her children the sacrifices their grandfather and great-grandparents made for the United States, instilling in them an appreciation for the military not often seen at such a young age.

“Anytime we see a service member, I have my kids walk up and thank them,” she related. “If we see them on the road, we roll down the window, wave and say ‘thank you,’ she explained. “No doubt they’re the first to stand up and put their hands over their hearts when the national anthem comes on. I hung up my dad’s Marine plaques in the boys’ room. We can’t put up all of them right now, as some have curse words, but as soon as they are old enough, every single plaque will be on their walls from my dad’s days flying F4’s.”

By far, one of the highlights of Spake’s life came last December during the FOX Sports Pearl Harbor Invitational at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam during the 75th commemoration of the attacks on the base. Spake served as a sideline reporter for four college basketball games played at storied Bloch Arena, which withstood the attack by Imperial Japan and serves as a continuous legacy to those stationed in Hawaii.

“The Pearl Harbor Invitational was, and always will be, one of the most significant events I have covered in my career,” Spake stated. “Being among the survivors of Pearl Harbor and WWII is something I will cherish forever. Pete Dupre, who is 97 and a World War II survivor, played the national anthem on his harmonica. There wasn’t a dry eye in the entire place. General Robert Brown (Commanding General of the U.S. Army Pacific) gave me a coin for my grandfather and one for my children. I was able to relay the news on-camera to my grandfather that the coin had been presented to me on his behalf. What an honor.”

The highlight of Hammond’s overseas work with the military came in his trip to Iraq, his first overseas venture, with General Sadler of Speedway Children’s Charities in a group sponsored by the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR).

“My trip to Iraq was the closest I’ve been to a combat situation,” related Hammond, who subsequently went to Korea, Germany and Bosnia. “I learned to appreciate the hardships military members endure and the things they look forward to that we take for granted – like a three-minute shower and a hot meal. You learn to follow orders verbatim, especially when flying in a Blackhawk helicopter and traveling in a convoy. Those experiences have grown my appreciation and admiration for anyone who has put on a uniform to serve.

“I’ve done everything with the military from spy lines to skydiving into Charlotte Motor Speedway to flying with the Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds, riding in Humvees and practicing rollovers, to shooting on indoor ranges,” he continued. “I always jump at the opportunity to hang out with some of the most respectful, God-fearing, USA-loving individuals you’ll ever encounter. They make me so proud to be born in this country.”

By virtue of his military upbringing, Hammond learned the value of respecting others, a principle he sees on display each time he is in the presence of service members.

“My dad was a Navy man who strictly enforced rules and regulations,” Hammond recalled. “He served in two different branches of the military and understood discipline and how far a firm handshake and a ‘Yes, sir’ and ‘No, sir’ will carry you in this world. Everyone deserves that respect. Our service members have always shown me the utmost respect. They are the first to offer me a seat or hold the door for me, when I should be serving them or standing watch for them so they can get an extra hour of sleep. You can’t find that on every street corner nowadays, but you can find it on every U.S. military base.”

Hammond, who visited Kuwait and Korea as part of a group from FOX Sports and has visited all four U.S. military branches overseas, says he has met countless service members who are NASCAR fans.

“So many of the men and women I’ve met overseas are NASCAR fans who love to ask about what happens in the sport and in the garage,” Hammond said. “I love the fact I can give them a bit of inside knowledge. In turn, I’ve been blessed to receive uniforms and military coins from my visits with service members ranging from generals to privates and corporals. Regardless of their rank, each is so special because they sacrifice equally for our safety.”

Spake looks forward to this weekend more than most other races this year because of the significance of the military backdrop at Charlotte Motor Speedway. She says the opportunity to host FOX Sports’ coverage of Saturday’s NASCAR XFINITY SERIES race (live on FS1 at 1:00 PM ET) is among her favorite assignments of the year.

“Being on the air from Charlotte on Memorial Day Weekend and knowing my grandfather is watching will mean more to me than any other race of the year,” Spake said. “Whenever I am able to represent the military in that environment and tell their stories, I am incredibly proud to know my family is watching. I am so moved to be in the middle of that, with my mind on work but my heart with my grandfather and those who were lost.”

Despite the awe-inspiring pageantry of the Memorial Day tributes and military demonstrations at Charlotte, Hammond is quick to define the significance surrounding this solemn holiday weekend versus that of Veteran’s Day.

“Memorial Day is about those who have given their lives to this country for our freedom and to keep everyone at home safe,” he explained. “It’s not specifically about those we see this weekend. It’s about those in the unknown soldiers’ graves and the unfathomable sacrifices made for this country.”

Jim Jackson

FOX Sports’ Best in Basketball Set the Stage for BIG3’s Inaugural Season

Play-by-Play Announcer Gus Johnson and Analyst Jim Jackson Team Up in Booth
Sideline Reporter Michael Rapaport Provides Updates and a Dose of Comedic Flair
Watch: Charles Oakley and Kenyon Martin Trash Talk on the Court

NEW YORK, NY – As Ice Cube and his league of basketball superstars gear up for the BIG3’s inaugural season, FOX Sports has put together a star-studded roster of its own.

Fresh off the 2017 BIG EAST Championship on FOX and FS1, play-by-play announcer Gus Johnson returns to the court alongside analyst Jim Jackson as BIG3’s lead broadcast team. Johnson, an eminent figure throughout the industry, pairs his infectious enthusiasm with Jackson’s extensive NBA experience and unparalleled knowledge of the game.

A frequent contributor to FS1’s daily studio shows, actor and comedian Michael Rapaport joins the veteran duo as a sideline reporter, offering in-game updates and interviews with his signature humor.

Today, Jackson joined FS1’s SKIP AND SHANNON: UNDISPUTED to discuss the league’s debut and how those closest to it are preparing.

“I think the biggest takeaway talking to Ice Cube is that he just doesn’t want this to be a gimmick. I think that’s why it was huge that FOX Sports signed on and that they’re doing it in different locations,” said Jackson. “But the names in regards to some of the coaches – George Gervin, Julius Erving, Charles Oakley, Allen Iverson as a player/coach – these guys are really taking this serious.”

The highly anticipated BIG3 professional 3-on-3, half-court basketball league tips off Sunday, June 25 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., and will air Monday, June 26 (8:00 PM ET) on FS1. FOX Sports presents exclusive coverage of the league’s championship game Saturday, Aug. 26 live at 4:30 PM ET on the FOX broadcast network.

The BIG3’s full 2017 schedule can be found here. Tickets are now available for purchase through Ticketmaster, and select VIP Packages can be found here.

Visit FOX Sports Press Pass for more FOX Sports news and information.

Gavitt Tipoff Games Logo

BIG EAST and Big Ten Announce Matchups for Gavitt Tipoff Games

Early-season series to be played Nov. 13-17

NEW YORK – The BIG EAST and Big Ten Conferences have announced the matchups for the third annual Gavitt Tipoff Games, with eight men’s basketball contests set for Nov. 13-17, 2017. Game times will be announced at a later date.

The Gavitt Tipoff Games is a unique early-season series played between the two conferences and named in honor of Hall of Famer Dave Gavitt, founder of the BIG EAST and basketball visionary. This year’s games will be televised on FS1 and BTN.

The annual series features battles between local foes and attractive intersectional matchups. Among the 16 participating schools, 11 played in the NCAA Tournament last year and two played in the NIT. Five of the games will feature matchups of teams coming NCAA berths. The 11 NCAA teams are: Minnesota, Providence, Purdue, Marquette, Butler, Maryland, Creighton, Northwestern, Seton Hall, Xavier and Wisconsin. The two NIT squads are Indiana and Illinois.

The 2017 Gavitt Tipoff Games schedule begins with Minnesota traveling to Providence on Monday, Nov. 13.

On Tuesday, Nov. 14, Marquette hosts Purdue. Three games are slotted for Wednesday, Nov. 15 – Butler at Maryland, Creighton at Northwestern and Indiana at Seton Hall.

The slate for Thursday, Nov. 16, includes a pair of contests, Xavier at Wisconsin and Nebraska at St. John’s.
The Gavitt Tipoff Games concludes with DePaul traveling to Illinois on Friday, Nov. 17.

The complete 2017 Gavitt Tipoff Games schedule follows:

Monday, Nov. 13
Minnesota at Providence – FS1

Tuesday, Nov. 14
Purdue at Marquette – FS1

Wednesday, Nov. 15
Butler at Maryland – FS1 or BTN
Creighton at Northwestern – FS1 or BTN
Indiana at Seton Hall – FS1

Thursday, Nov. 16
Nebraska at St. John’s – FS1
Xavier at Wisconsin – FS1

Friday, Nov. 17
DePaul at Illinois — BTN

Scheduled through 2022, the Gavitt Tipoff Games will be played on consecutive days in the first full week of the college basketball season. The series will span eight years, with games played at home sites. Each BIG EAST team will participate a minimum of six times, while Big Ten programs will take part a minimum of four times. Teams from both conferences already meet in some traditional rivalry games, and those matchups will continue in the upcoming seasons.

The distinctive series between the two conferences is named to honor the late Gavitt, who had a profound and lasting influence on the sport of basketball at the collegiate, professional and Olympic levels. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.