LOS ANGELES and CHICAGO – The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) and FOX Sports today announced a multi-year, multi-platform agreement making FOX Sports the new television partner for the Go Bowling! PBA Tour starting in 2019. The package will bring a substantial schedule of live PBA events to television, including prime time events and a new bracket-style, multi-week PBA Playoffs tournament that concludes with a unique PBA championship finale. The announcement was made by PBA CEO and Commissioner Tom Clark and William Wanger, FOX Sports EVP of Programming, Live Operations and Research.
“The PBA has been searching for the best possible broadcast partner to serve our fans, players and the bowling industry, and we have determined that partner is FOX Sports,” Clark said. “We are particularly excited that the PBA Tour returns to broadcast television, where it started 56 years ago, with shows on FOX next year.”
In 2019, FOX Sports will televise four PBA Tour shows on FOX and 25 on FS1 in a series of two-hour telecasts. All programs will also be streamed on FOX Sports GO. Details pertaining to the FOX Sports-PBA package regarding PBA Tour locations, dates and times, and the television announcing team will be released at a later date.
“FOX Sports is thrilled to add the highly rated PBA Tour to our extensive lineup, joining other sport partners including the NFL, the FIFA World Cup, MLB, NASCAR, MLS, UFC, NHRA, Supercross, USGA, college football and basketball, and others,” said Wanger. “We believe that adding a FOX Sports look and feel to bowling will help bring the sport to a whole new level.”
The agreement between FOX Sports and the PBA extends a non-stop television presence for professional bowling that began in 1962 with ABC Television’s 36 years of continuous coverage of the Pro Bowlers Tour and 38 consecutive years of coverage on ESPN, beginning with ESPN’s formation in 1979.
Both parties plan to supplement the broadcast and cable coverage of the PBA Tour’s premier events with live-streaming of preliminary rounds by PBA’s Xtra Frame online bowling channel as well as extensive use of the FOX Sports and PBA Network outlets including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and their respective websites.