The Walking Dead Part 1: ESPN

Each of us will either use the platforms we have been given to promote ungodliness or biblical values. Did you know that ESPN is clearly using their massive platform to help push God out of mainstream America? For example, during its annual ESPY Awards in 2014 and 2015, ESPN decided to give courage awards to Michael Sam and Bruce Jenner because one is gay and the other had a sex change. This is not surprising since ESPN has actively promoted the homosexual agenda.

ESPN has had a historic run as the best sports network ever. I believe that God is currently punishing some organizations that have decided to promote the homosexual agenda. Consequently, ESPN is among the walking dead: Companies that are under God’s judgment that will collapse in the next couple of years for promoting ungodly values.

“ESPN Loses 621,000 Subscribers; Worst Month In Company History” – Outkick the Coverage – October 29, 2016

I also believe ESPN is a critical piece of the puzzle in terms of how God will bring judgment to the sports world for its part in promoting the homosexual agenda. When ESPN goes out of business, this could be devastating to the sports world. For example, ESPN gives the NFL $1.9 billion each year to televise Monday Night Football. That almost $2 billion represents about 15 percent of what the NFL will take in during the 2016 season (the NFL is projected to make about $13 billion 2016).

What about the NBA, has it been promoting the homosexual agenda as well? Did you know ESPN pays the NBA $1.73 billion a year for the rights to televise its games? The $5.2 billion in revenue NBA teams generated in 2015 was a record. So nearly 25 percent of the NBA’s total revenue comes from ESPN. Let’s not forget about the NCAA? ESPN also gives them over a billion dollars each year to televise this league’s events and games as well.

“NBA, WNBA Are First Pro Sports Leagues to March in NYC LGBT Pride Parade” – Washington Post – June 7, 2016

As you can see, sports leagues like the NBA and college basketball are making billions of dollars off TV revenues. How else do you think the NBA can afford to pay players like Timofey Mozgov of Los Angeles Lakers a four-year deal worth $64m? So, when money from television dries up, so will the revenues of most of these leagues.

ESPN’s Long-Term Contracts

Rights Years of Expiration Cost Per Year
Monday Night Football 2021 $1.9 Billion
NBA 2025 $1.73 billion
Major League Baseball 2021 $700 million
College Football Playoff 2026 $470 million
Big Ten 2023 $190 million
Big 12 2025 $100 million
ACC 2036 $155 million
Pac-12 2023 $112 million
SEC 2023 $80 million

Data from fool.com

“Millennials are over watching sports on TV” – Messenger Inquirer – November 26, 2016

Why are TV networks like ESPN disappearing? Millennials are abandoning cable TV as a group. When cable TV goes away, this will seriously hurt the sports industry. Here are three reasons why Millennials will help crash the cable TV and sports industry very soon:

  1. I believe that millennials have a deep belief that things like music, movies, and following sports should be free. So, a Millennial would much rather buy a big screen TV to watch their favorite team play than spend thousands of dollars for a season ticket.
  2. There are a growing number of options for entertainment other than cable TV (Netflix, Hulu, social media, etc.). The average Netflix subscription is $7.99. Meanwhile, the average cable bill is $99.10.
  3. Millennials are not loyal to hometown teams like the previous generations have been, especially, if their hometown team is losing. So, most Millennials won’t watch or pay to see a losing team.

I believe not only will ESPN collapse but also other sources of TV revenue leagues that the NBA have counted on for years will dry up as Millennials continue to turn their backs on traditional TV. Just like ESPN won’t be able to pay the outrageous prices it cost to televise NFL and NBA games, I believe cable networks like TNT will face similar problems. If almost half of the NBA’s revenue comes from cable TV networks, can it survive if almost half its revenue is gone?

“ESPN Fires Curt Schilling Over Anti-Transgender Post” – Deadline – April 20, 2016

Yes, if ESPN falls, it will help bring down the sports world with it. Below are four things that have helped to shape ESPN’s legacy as we see how devastating the fall of ESPN would be to the sports world:

  1. ESPN helped many professional sports athletes get mega contracts.

Have you noticed that the amount of money professional athletes get paid has skyrocketed over the years? Andrew Luck is the highest paid player in the NFL. He currently earns an average of $24.5 million a year. Joe Montana and other elite quarterbacks during the early ‘90s typically made about $3 million a year. Troy Aikman was once the highest paid quarterback when the Dallas Cowboys signed him to an eight-year deal for $50 million dollars in 1993.

Skyrocketing players’ salaries is currently happening in the NBA as well. During most of Michael Jordan’s NBA career, he only made about $2 million dollars a year in salary. In Jordan’s 17-year career, he made a total of about $94 million. It was not until near the end of Jordan’s career that he started to see his salary jump. Chicago did give Jordan a one-year deal worth $33 million in 1997. In 2016, there were 29 players in the NBA who make over $20 million a year in salary.

Are the fans spending more money to see their favorite teams play than what they used to? Yes. But the amount fans pay for a ticket to a game can’t explain the fact that Andrew Luck makes an average of $20 million more a year than what Joe Montana made. If you track the amount of money the different sports leagues earn in TV revenue, you will have a clear picture why professional athletes make so much money.

“Report: NFL salary cap could reach $153.4M in 2016, up from $143.28M” – CBSSports.com – December 4, 2015

ESPN pours billions of dollars each year into sports leagues for the rights to broadcast their games. For example, in 2017, ESPN will spend $7.3 billion on content—more than any source, then Netflix ($6bn), NBC ($4.3bn), CBS ($4bn) & Amazon ($3.2bn). Most of the money ESPN is spending on content is going to sports leagues like the NFL and NBA. The NFL uses some of the money it earns from ESPN and other TV networks to pay players like Andrew Luck. If ESPN were to collapse, many players would have to take a huge pay cut.

  1. ESPN has helped to drive up the price of televising NFL games.

The NFL makes billions of dollars from the rights to broadcast its games. Why?  There are numerous TV networks willing to pay big bucks to televise the NFL. Some networks like ESPN have been willing to pay more than others. Let’s look at the history of Monday Night Football (MNF), with the goal to help you understand just how much ESPN has helped the NFL’s TV revenue grow.

The ABC TV network started broadcasting MNF in 1970. At the beginning of MNF, ABC paid the NFL $8.5 million per season. When ABC finished broadcasting MNF in 2005, it was paying the NFL $550 million per season.

“ESPN Pays Top Dollar for Football, but Audience Isn’t Buying” – New York Times – November 28, 2016

When ESPN took over Monday Night Football from ABC, it started paying the NFL $1.1 billion a year to televise MNF—twice the amount of what ABC was paying.  In ESPN’s second contract with the NFL, which it signed in 2011, ESPN agreed to pay the NFL $1.9 billion a year to broadcast MNF. Over the last 10 years, the price to broadcast MNF has nearly tripled since ESPN has taken over MNF. ESPN’s reckless spending has been the number one reason why sports leagues have been able to make so much money over the last couple of years off of television revenue.

  1. ESPN set the new standard in sports journalism.

Before ESPN, sports on TV was usually reduced to 5 to 10-minute segments on the evening news. ESPN pretty much invented sports shows that helped to better engage sports fans. Shows like First Take (Skip Bayless vs Stephen A. Smith) and Pardon the Interruption (Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon) have taken sports talk shows to a new level. Sports fans also appreciated ESPN’s shows like E60 and Outside the Lines. ESPN gave sports fans a fresh and new look at sports beyond what we see on the field.

“First Take to Move From ESPN2 to ESPN in Effort to Stop Falling Ratings” – New York Times – November 28, 2016

  1. ESPN helped sports fans to have more choices when watching sporting events.

If you grew up before the early ‘80s, then, you probably remember only being given a chance to watch a couple of sporting events on the weekends. Thanks to ESPN, sports fans have plenty of sports to watch almost every day of the year. For instance, college football fans can sit on their couch for most of December and a couple of weeks in January and enjoy bowl games almost every day. Thirty years ago, college football bowl games were mostly on TV during New Year’s Day. If ESPN was not around anymore, most sports leagues would have less opportunity to promote their products to sports fans.

“NCAA caps number of bowl games at 41 for next three years” – usatoday.com – April 12, 2016

History Makers

This week, we are looking at how ESPN has made history, and I also want to take a brief look at the history of the gay rights movement. No one knows who the first gay man or woman was. We can only guess where homosexuality started. But the gay rights movement has been well documented, as millions of people have fought to see homosexuality become socially accepted in this country.

The gay rights movement has been around for over a hundred years. One of the biggest names in the movement is a gay rights activist by the name of Harry Hay. In 1951, Mr. Hay started the first national gay rights organization called the Mattachine Society. Since then, there have been numerous organizations designed to further gay rights. These organizations have had several victories that have helped to further gay rights. Of course, the gay community’s biggest victory was when the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage in 2015.

“ESPN Hires Lesbian Hillary Supporter Abby Wambach After Firing Curt Schilling Over Transgender Views” – christianpost.com – May 6, 2016

We have also seen gays who have made history. For example, Michael Sam will go down in the history books as the first openly gay professional football player. You probably know that February is Black History Month. Did you know that October is considered Gay History Month in America?

Wrong Side of History

One day, those who have spent their lives fighting for gay rights will figure out that they were on the wrong side of history. One of the worst things a person can do is come to the end of his life and find out that he promoted something that is against God’s ideals. The truth is, even though we are a part of history, few people will make history. I would rather just be a part of history than make the wrong type of history.

“California to Add LGBT Rights Movement to Public School Curriculum” – ATTN – July 18, 2016

Harry Hay, who became one of the first well-known nationwide gay rights activists, will have his name mentioned in a lot of history books. There are probably millions of people who love and respect Mr. Hay for what he accomplished as a gay rights activist. The question is whether the God of the Bible in heaven is celebrating Mr. Hay and others who have been a part of the gay rights movement.  Just because homosexuality has become socially acceptable does not mean that someone promoting it is on the right side of history. There are plenty of people who have made history but have been on the wrong side of it.

Do you think George Wallace, the former governor of Alabama during the Civil Rights Movement, wished he could go back in time and change his place in history? At the time, segregating Blacks in the South from Whites was socially acceptable but morally wrong. Despite what you think about homosexuality, it is socially acceptable, but the Bible tells us it is morally wrong.

You might be saying to yourself, “Is it true that discrimination of any kind is morally wrong?” I can agree with that to an extent. Should Michael Sam be able to play in the NFL or do any type of job he is qualified to do? No question. Should he be able to get married to another man? Absolutely not!  I am not discriminating against gays if I don’t believe in gay marriage. I am simply upholding a moral standard laid out in the Bible.

“Sports Writer Calls Gay Marriage Proposal During Bulls Game a ‘Groundbreaking Moment in Sports’” – Breitbart News – December 10, 2016

History books nowadays tend to favor people who did what was socially acceptable. God will partly judge our lives based on the decisions we made that were morally right. We all must decide what side of history we want to be in terms of homosexuality. ESPN will go down in history as a great sports network, but on the wrong side of history as far as promoting the homosexual agenda is concerned. Ultimately, God determines who is on the right or wrong side of history, not someone writing a history book.

NFL’s Broken Legacy?

I get the fact that the NFL and ESPN want to be remembered for fighting against discrimination. It has become common for people to stand up for gay rights with the idea that they are improving our society, which has often tolerated discrimination. Yet, in standing up for gay rights, ESPN and the NFL are forfeiting a great opportunity to honor God with the huge platforms they have been given. Keep in mind that one can’t promote biblical values and homosexuality at the same time. The NFL and ESPN have chosen to do what is popular and not what is right.

“Teen stands up against transgender students in locker room” – lehighvalleylive.com – August 24, 2016

One day when we read about the NFL in history books, what will historians say about this league? I wouldn’t blame people if they were to focus on things like, “Who was the greatest quarterback ever?” or debate, “What was the greatest team of all time?” In view, entertainment wise, the NFL has been a valuable asset. Yet, the most profitable sports league ever is currently working towards becoming the least valuable league when it comes to its worth to this nation. Mr. Goodell, do you think the NFL is leaving behind the type of legacy God can be proud of? If the NFL doesn’t change, history books may be kind to the NFL, but God won’t be.

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