ESPN Announces Airdates for 9-Ball

Colorado Springs, Colorado: The Billiard Congress of America [BCA] recently received word from program managers at ESPN, confirming July 9 and 16, 2006 for debut airings of the taped semi- and final rounds of the 9-Ball Championships, from the Riviera Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. That event is scheduled to take place May 14-20, with broadcast tapings set for Friday and Saturday evening of that week.

As more broadcasts are scheduled, show updates will appear regularly on the website, and the preliminary lineup is as follows:

  • Sunday July 9 @ 2:30 pm, Men's Semifinal
  • Sunday July 9 @ 3:30 pm, Men's Final
  • Sunday July 16 @ 3:00 pm, Women's Semifinal
  • Sunday July 16 @ 4:00 pm, Women's Final

Since the first taping in 1999, viewer ratings have ranged from a .29 average rating (253,469 households) for the debut of all four rounds, to a peak of .49 (431,161) for a single showing of the men's final. ESPN's benchmark rating average for all taped sporting events is .20, making billiards a market standout for both the channel and official BCA sponsors, who win big with a high return on their ad investment. Although guaranteeing only four hours of air time by contract, ESPN has responded to audience demand by exceeding that number — at least six times over — each year.

Throughout the televised rounds, rotating arena banners will reach millions of billiard fans on ESPN and ESPN2, promoting the official 2006 sponsors, which include: American Poolplayers Association (arena), Brunswick (furniture), Imperial International - Aramith (balls), Iwan Simonis (cloth), McDermott Custom Cues (cue), Olhausen Billiard Mfg., Inc. (table), Original Italian Slate (arena), (closed caption & arena), Sardo Tight Rack (rack), and Tweeten Fibre Co., Inc. (chalk).