At this point, it looks like about 212 NBC sports events and specials in 2012, not including the 2012 Olympics and the threatened onslaught of Olympic Trials in prime this summer. (Hey, it's cheaper than coming up with real prime programming!)
As you might imagine, coming up with reasonable and fair audience estimates for hour-long OTO weekend events is difficult at best. Some of my clients have several years of back-data, while others have almost none, so each station's estimates have to be built entirely for them, one by one.
This is why most stations don't bother with these programs in inventory, and they end up being sold as part of fire-sale rotators, or a dumping ground for rookie traffic employees. There's a huge difference in audience composition between these events, but after 12 years of handling them, I've got a pretty good idea of how they perform in various markets.
But in times where corporations are making budget cutbacks without real-time awareness of what harm they do, gleaning a thousand extra local spots a year, with full audience estimates and rationale listed in MediaOffice for sale, probably isn't a bad idea.
NBC Sport Updates continue for clients in Phoenix and Albuquerque this week.