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CBS Will Do Final Four in 3D

NEW YORK: CBS will do a 3D telecast of the NCAA Final Four, the network said this week, marking the network’s first sporting event in the format. The network did a clip during the Grammys in 3D, but has otherwise waited as Fox and the NFL experimented with several football and basketball games.

Now, CBS Sports, along with LG Electronics and Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp., will broadcast the 2010 NCAA Men’s Final Four semifinal and national championship games in 3D. The feed will be displayed at 100 specially equipped theaters around the country. NEP will provide the production trucks for the events, and 3D pioneering camera developer Vince Pace will participate in the coverage.

The games on Saturday, April 3, 6-11 p.m. ET, and Monday, April 5, 9-11 p.m. ET, will be “fully produced,” CBS said, with Dave Ryan and Steve Lappas announcing. LG is sponsoring the tourney broadcasts, and Cinedigm is providing the theaters. Cinedigm, along with Sensio, provided theaters and technology for the 2009 BCS Championship and the 2009 NBA All-Star Saturday Night events.

Cinedigm has not yet listed specific locations for the Final Four games, but is taking requests for ZIP Code-related notifications. Among those chains listed as “Cinedigm Certified” are Atlas, Allen, Carmlike, Celebration!, Galaxy, MJR, Neighborhood, Rave, Showplace, Great Escape, Georgia Theatre Co., Emagine, Marquee, Krikorian and UltraStar.

LG, which introduced 3D LCD sets in Korea last year, will be rolling out 3D-capable, LED HDTV sets and Blu-ray players in the United States in May. Other brands are already hitting the market. Panasonic 3D home theater systems are going on sale today at Best Buys; Samsung 3D sets are available now online. Sony is taking pre-orders for 3D Bravias. (See “3DTVs Hit the Market.”)

LG will have its new 3D sets on site in Indianapolis during the tourney at Lucas Oil Stadium, and at the NCAA’s interactive fan event, “Bracket Town.” -- Deborah D. McAdams

(Scoreboard image by Alicia Griffin)