ESPN, XXIII Olympic Winter Games on NBC Lead 40th-Annual Sports Emmy Nominations

Crowded Wensel Award race celebrates 5G, HDR with Dolby Atmos, and much more

On Wednesday, The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) unveiled its nominees for the 40th Annual Sports Emmy Awards.

Topping the list of network groups, ESPN (which includes ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPN+, ABC, ESPN Deportes, ESPNews, SEC Network, and WatchESPN) tallied an impressive 56 nominations, with NBC Sports (NBC, NBCSN, Golf Channel, Telemundo, CNBC, MSNBC, NBCOlympics.com, The Olympic Channel, and USA) raking in 38 nominations of its own. CBS Sports (CBS, CBS Sports Network) with 27 noms, Fox (Fox, FS1, and FoxSports.com) with 25, and HBO Sports with 16 wrapped up the top five.

The XXIII Winter Olympics is the most celebrated individual event heading into this year’s Sports Emmys. The NBC family pulled in 12 nominations for its various efforts around the Games from PyeongChang, South Korea. Super Bowl LIII also brought eight nominations to CBS, and the 2018 FIFA World Cup, Fox’s first men’s FIFA World Cup, earned the network five noms.

Some familiar faces will battle it out to take home the biggest award of the night: the Sports Emmy for Outstanding Live Sports Special. NBC/Golf Channel’s coverage of the 2018 Tour Championship, ESPN’s efforts at the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship, Fox’s production of the 114th World Series, NBC’s operation at the 150th Belmont Stakes, and CBS’s Super Bowl LIII coverage are all in the running for this year’s statue.

The race for the coveted George Wensel Technical Achievement Award is an intriguing — and crowded — one as well. The line-to-gain pylon cam deployed by ESPN College Football, a single-stream HDR with Dolby Atmos from a Notre Dame football game produced by NBC, a 5G workflow for U.S. Open golf by Fox, K Zone 3D on ESPN MLB coverage, the ESPN ACES system used by ESPN for the US Open tennis tournament, and the Raptor Smartglasses deployed by NBC at the Tour de France are all deserving nominations recognizing innovative efforts that advanced the industry technologically this year.

The Sports Emmys award ceremony will take place at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall in New York City on May 20. Until then, you can take a look at the complete list of all the nominees of the 40th-Annual Sports Emmy Awards, but here’s a few of the major awards honoring some of the best in operations, production, and digital innovation:

THE GEORGE WENSEL TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
ESPN College Football: Line-to-Gain Pylon Cam (ESPN/ABC/SEC Network)
Major League Baseball on ESPN: K Zone 3D (ESPN/WatchESPN)
Notre Dame Football: Single-Stream HDR with Atmos (NBC)
Tour de France: Raptor Smartglasses (NBC/NBCSN)
US Open Tennis Championships: ESPN ACES System (ESPN/ESPN2/ESPN3)
USGA on Fox: U.S. Open 5G (Fox/FS1)

OUTSTANDING LIVE SPORTS SPECIAL
2018 PGA Tour: 2018 Tour Championship (NBC/Golf Channel)
2019 College Football Playoff National Championship: Clemson Tigers vs. Alabama Crimson Tide (ESPN)
The 114th World Series: Boston Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Dodgers (FOX)
The 150th Belmont Stakes (NBC)
Super Bowl LIII: New England Patriots vs. Los Angeles Rams (CBS)

OUTSTANDING LIVE SPORTS SERIES
Golf Channel on NBC (NBC)
Major League Baseball on ESPN (ESPN)
NFL on CBS (CBS)
SEC on CBS (CBS)
Sunday Night Football (NBC)

OUTSTANDING LIVE SPORTS COVERAGE IN SPANISH
2018 Copa Mundial de la FIFA (Telemundo)
2018 MLS Cup: Atlanta United vs. Portland Timbers (UniMas)
2018 NBA Finals: Golden State Warriors vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (ESPN Deportes)
Copa Libertadores 2018 Final: River Plate vs. Boca Juniors (Telemundo)
Liga MX — La Gran Final Torneo Apertura: Cruz Azul vs. América (Univision/Univision Deportes)

OUTSTANDING PLAYOFF COVERAGE
2018 FIFA World Cup on Fox (Fox/FS1)
AFC Championship: New England Patriots vs. Kansas City Chiefs (CBS)
NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament (tbs/CBS/TNT/truTV)
NCAA Women’s Basketball Final Four: Louisville vs. Mississippi St and Notre Dame vs. Connecticut (ESPN2)
SEC Championship Game: Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Georgia Bulldogs (CBS)

OUTSTANDING TECHNICAL TEAM REMOTE
2018 College Football Playoff National Championship (ESPN)
The 100th PGA Championship (CBS/CBS Sports Network)
Super Bowl LIII (CBS)
US Open Tennis Championship (ESPN)
XXIII Olympic Winter Games (NBC/NBCSN/CNBC/USA)

OUTSTANDING TECHNICAL TEAM STUDIO
2018 FIFA World Cup on Fox (Fox/FS1)
College GameDay (ESPN)
MLB Tonight (MLB Network)
Super Bowl LIII (NFL Network)
XXIII Olympic Winter Games (NBC/NBCSN/CNBC/USA)

OUTSTANDING CAMERA WORK
Being Serena (HBO [Endeavor Content])
Hard Knocks: Training Camp With the Cleveland Browns (HBO [NFL Films])
North of Nightfall (DirecTV [Red Bull Media House/Freeride Entertainment])
XXIII Olympic Winter Games: Always Start With the Dreams (NBC)
Zion (Netflix [Bindery Films])

OUTSTANDING LIVE EVENT AUDIO/SOUND
The 102nd Indianapolis 500 (ABC)
MLB on Fox (Fox/FS1)
NASCAR on Fox (Fox/FS1)
NFL on CBS (CBS)
Sunday Night Baseball (ESPN)
XXIII Olympic Winter Games (NBC)

OUTSTANDING LIVE GRAPHIC DESIGN
2018 FIFA World Cup on Fox (Fox/FS1)
Major League Baseball on ESPN (ESPN)
NFL Draft (ESPN/ABC)
The Super Bowl Today/Super Bowl LIII (CBS)
XXIII Olympic Winter Games (NBC/NBCSN/CNBC/USA/MSNBC)

OUTSTANDING TRANS-MEDIA SPORTS COVERAGE
2018 FIFA World Cup on Fox (Fox/FS1/FoxSports.com)
Premier League (NBC/NBCSN)
The 100th PGA Championship (PGA.com)
The Match: Tiger vs. Phil (B/R Live)
XXIII Olympic Winter Games (NBC/NBCSN/CNBC/USA/ NBCOlympics.com)

OUTSTANDING DIGITAL INNOVATION
Ashe ’68: 360-Degree Sand Animation (SI TV [Custom Reality Services/Lumen Animae/ Rexpix Media/Get Lifted Film Co./ Oak Street Pictures/Legend 3D])
Home Run Derby Virtual Reality (Twitch/Facebook/YouTube/ MLB.com/ESPN [MLB Games/Engine Shot])
MLB Tonight: Diamond Demo 360 (MLB Network)
NBA Desktop (The Ringer)
NBA in VR (NBA League Pass [Next VR])

For the complete list of all nominees of the 40th Annual Sports Emmy Awards, CLICK HERE

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