ESPN360.com and Verizon Join Forces to Crown The King of Fandom

The search
for the most passionate sports fan in the country was launched byESPN360.com
and Verizon, with the ultimate enthusiast to be crowned “King of Fandom.”

In a
unique national promotion, between now and Sept. 19, Verizon broadband
customers will be able to register for the King of Fandom competition in the
sports section of the VerizonSurround.com entertainment portal
(verizonsurround.com/sports) and take the daily three-question sports quiz. The
person with the highest total score at the end of the competition will be named
the ber fan – a live-game junkie who must watch games from beginning to end
and isn’t satisfied with just catching the highlights. The winner of the King
of Fandom will not only revel in the glory of the title, but will also win a
one-year lease on the ultimate tailgate vehicle — a customized Ford F-250
pickup truck — and $25,000 to indulge the definitive sports event road trip.

“This
promotion marries the two most important attributes of ESPN360.com – our
unmatched live event offering and our affiliated Internet service providers,”
said Matt Murphy, senior vice president, digital video distribution, ESPN. “We
expect to continue to build upon the growth and success of ESPN360.com in the
coming year, and Verizon FiOS and high speed internet customers will be able to
take full advantage of our increasingly robust live event schedule.”

ESPN360.com,
the company’s signature, next-generation broadband sports network, recently
launched a new user interface and adopted a new programming strategy. The
service will present more than 2,000 live sporting events in the next 12
months, delivering multiple live events at a time and spanning a global lineup,
including (but not limited to): college football and basketball; NBA games;
NASCAR Nextel and Busch Series races; International rugby; U.S. and
international soccer matches. ESPN360.com is free to fans and is currently
available in more than 17 million homes nationwide that receive their
high-speed Internet connection from an affiliated service provider such as
Verizon. ESPN360.com has more than doubled its distribution since August 2006.

“Our
Verizon Internet subscribers can now enjoy more live sports action than ever
before on their PCs and laptops, both at home and away from home,” said
Bill Heilig, Verizon vice president for broadband services. “ESPN360.com
already is a premier part of our online entertainment programming, and we’re
delighted to further enhance that experience. It demonstrates our commitment to
boosting the value of Verizon broadband and our new fiber-optic network for
Verizon customers, any of whom could be the next King of Fandom.”

The King
of Fandom competition will pose questions developed by Howie Schwab, sports
trivia
master and host of ESPN’s Stump the Schwab. The questions will test fans’
sports knowledge and highlight upcoming live sports programming on the newly
relaunched ESPN360.com. Fans may enter once per day throughout the promotional
time frame of Sept. 1-19 at the Verizon Surround website. The competitor with
the highest score will earn the national title and the rewards that go along
with the crown. An official coronation event will take place at the ESPN
Headquarters in

Bristol,
Conn., at the end of September. The winner
will be recognized by a member of ESPN’s on-air team and drive away in the
grand prize – The King of Fandom customized truck.

The
customized Ford F-250, designed with the ultimate fan in mind, includes a Dell
XPS M1710 laptop computer with a 17-inch screen and a free year of Verizon High
Speed Internet service. The truck features custom graphics, KVH Tracnet
internet connection, seven LCD panels, red LED underbody lighting, strobe
lighting, limousine tinting, tinted head and tail lights, sports tickers,
exterior (weatherproof) high-performance speakers, a stainless-steel serving
table modeled after ESPN’s SportsCenter desk, a grill-and-chill tailgating
system, custom bleacher seating, programmable remote control for the A/V system
and a custom awning for those sunny football weekends. The interior of the
truck includes Sirius XM radio, a bluetooth mobile hands-free system, rawhide
leather seating, custom stitching and embroidery, a top-of-the-line sound
system and a custom-built closet in the back seat to house the King of Fandom’s
most-prized team jerseys.

During the
promotion period, ESPN360.com branded teams will visit select markets to
conduct live demos to let customers see, touch and experience the new
ESPN360.com in action, and give local fans the chance to win the King of Fandom
crown through onsite entry.

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