Houston Texans offensive tackle Eric Winston is a funny and insightful guy who is a regular on local and national sports talk shows as well as a very good follow on Twitter. Tonight, he launches a Monday Night Football commentary show called Not Your Ordinary Sports Show (NYOSS) with Sports Radio 610 Sports Director Robert Henslee that will broadcast live on YouTube.
The show, the brainchild of Winston and business partner Sean Bouley, is described as part Real Time with Bill Maher, part Best Damn Sports Show Period and part Mystery Science Theater 3000. Winston, Henslee and guests will watch Monday Night Football and comment live during the game on a video stream, currently set to be filmed at the local CBS Radio studios. Though certainly the game will be discussed in detail, the show aims to be more casual and drift through a variety of topics as they come up just as people would while watching at a sports bar.
"You're not only talking about the game," Henslee told Hair Balls. "You might be talking about movies, women, politics, whatever."
In fact, NYOSS cannot broadcast the game or even do play-by-play coverage, which are both prohibited by the NFL. It remains unclear just how close this will come to violating league policies relating to broadcast of the games, but, for now, they are moving ahead with what appears to be a carefully crafted approach to sports talk.
Winston and Bouley did their homework after coming up with the idea last year. They've met with numerous tech companies and PR firms (as well as attorneys) in an effort to figure out if a show like this will work and how to make it successful. YouTube donated the bandwidth for the show as they continue to ramp up their network for more live programming, and CBS Radio, home to Henslee's KILT, has agreed to provide the facilities.
Having facilities and a place to broadcast a live stream are huge supports for a fledgling show. It has been reported for some time now that YouTube and iTunes, among others, have been angling for more live streaming of performances, which makes sense given they already have the networks and bandwidth to support them.
In addition to YouTube, the show creators hope to capitalize on the fact that people love to Twitter during games and other live events. They will leverage Twitter and other social networking mediums like Facebook to add to the show's content.
"While people are watching a game, they are on Twitter or Facebook and communicating with their friends," Henslee said. "We are inviting people to watch the game with us."
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Admittedly, no one knows if people will tune into a video feed during a game to simulcast a show of this nature, but with all the success people have live-Tweeting and live blogging events, it makes sense this could be another option.
To enhance the shows, they hope to have a varied guest list each week. This week's panel includes PGA tour golfer Steve Elkington, Olympic medal winner Chad Hedrick and NASA astronaut Scott Kelly, which they hope will spur conversation not only related to football or even sports. Winston often discusses politics, world affairs and other sports during his radio appearances. "He's the anti-dumb jock," Henslee said.
The show is just the first of what THEBUS Entertainment (Bouley and Winston's company) hopes will be many similar shows. They hope to eventually have a bus that can be driven to various events -- Monday Night Football sites to start -- and all broadcasts be done from the bus. It's an ambitious plan and one that Winston no doubt sees as part of his future after the NFL, but they are starting with NYOSS tonight.
You can stream the live broadcast tonight during the game at http://www.youtube.com/thebus.