This week in the sports media and marketing ecosystem, Laura Rutledge signs a multi-year extension with ESPN, Katherine Prchlik joins the University of Nebraska marketing team, and Twitch hires NASCAR exec Lou Garate.
For job openings and more on who’s moving where, check out the Hashtag Sports Weekly roundup.
Sports Illustrated continues to evolve following its acquisition by Maven, and this week added Max Goodman as a digital reporter and publisher for ‘Yankee Maven,’ the website’s new Yankees vertical. Goodman is a Northwestern University graduate, where he received his Bachelor’s in Broadcast Journalism and his Master’s in Sports Media from the Medill School of Journalism. Goodman covered the Miami Marlins during the 2018 season for MLB.com, and later worked as an associate producer on ESPN’s ‘Get Up.’
‘Yankee Maven’ is part of Sports Illustrated’s new model of team-specific verticals designed to boost local coverage and maximize content production. Goodman is responsible for reporting, publishing, and putting out a range of articles, videos, and podcasts.
SEC Nation host Laura Rutledge has signed a multi-year extension with ESPN that will see her roles at the network expanded. Rutledge will remain the host of ‘SEC Nation’ but will also become a permanent contributor on ‘Get Up’, where she has been a weekly correspondent. She will also continue her regular appearances on a number of other ESPN studio shows, including anchoring ‘SportsCenter,’ hosting ‘College Football Live,’ and reporting from the College Football Playoff.
Rutledge has been with ESPN since 2014 and has covered a wide range of sports as both a reporter and a play-by-play commentator. Rutledge’s profile at the company has risen over the past few years, with recent roles as the red carpet host at the Home Depot College Football Awards and the ESPYS.
Katherine Prchlik will be joining the University of Nebraska in the coming weeks. On November 19th, the Michigan alum and current Utah State University marketer will be making her return to the Big Ten as part of the marketing and fan experience team. Prchlik has been at Utah State for more than 3 years and is currently assistant director of marketing and promotions. In her role, Prchlik is the marketing lead and social media manager for men’s and women’s track, soccer, and tennis teams, in addition to women’s basketball.
It is unclear what exactly Prchlik’s role will be within the Nebraska marketing and fan experience team. Prchlik holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications Studies and History from the University of Michigan, and prior to her time at Utah State she was a marketing assistant at McNeer State University in Louisiana.
Esports organization Dignitas have added John Spiher as Director of Partnerships, after Spiher spent nearly a year serving the same role for the Houston Outlaws of the Overwatch League. Spiher, an Eastern Michigan University graduate, was the co-founder and senior VP of Triggerfish, the sponsorship sales arm of Infinite Esports & Entertainment, until he left the company for the position with the Outlaws. Spiher is a strong believer in the importance and impact of esports – he sits on the board of Anxiety Gaming, a non-profit focused on mental health in the gaming community. Additionally, he is program director for Gamers Outreach, another esports charity organization that works to use the power of gaming to positively impact the lives of others.
Twitch continues to grow and expand into the esports market with the hiring of Lou Garate as the first Global Head of Sponsorship Sales. Garate is a seasoned partnerships vet, coming to Twitch after 12 years as senior VP of sponsorship marketing at NASCAR where he oversaw partnerships with brands in consumer packaged foods, fuel, automotive, and financial services. Before his tenure at NASCAR, Garate was Managing Director at Ryan Partnership, where he consulted on sports sponsorships for brands including Nestle and Heineken.
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