The San Francisco 49ers announced on Tuesday the acquisition of the nation's most-watched high school sports television program, Cal-Hi Sports Bay Area. The show, which has been on air for the past 15 years and currently registers one million online views per year, has been re-branded to "49ers Cal-Hi Sports Report" and will continue to feature a wide variety of sports from the 175 high schools throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. The 49ers Cal-Hi Sports Report premieres on Sunday, August 27th at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. PT on NBC Sports California, 49ers.com, and the 49ers Cal-Hi Sports Report YouTube channel.
Current Cal-Hi Sports Bay Area executive producer and host Robert Braunstein will continue to bring positive attention to local Bay Area student-athletes with highlights, compelling feature stories, and interviews with various high school teams. Braunstein will be joined by co-host Marissa Lovus, who is in her seventh season with the program. Leveraging 49ers resources, such as the state-of-the-art NBC Sports Bay Area studios at Levi's® Stadium, and the awarding-winning production expertise of 49ers Studios, 49ers Cal-Hi Sports Report will build off of the program's previous success.
"The 49ers have a strong commitment to youth sports across the San Francisco Bay Area and that makes the launch of the 49ers Cal-Hi Sports Report so exciting for us as an organization," said 49ers President Al Guido. "Robert and his team have dedicated their careers to showcasing the talented high school student-athletes throughout the region and their excellence in positively promoting Bay Area high school sports was a natural fit for us."
"The purchase of our show by the 49ers is an affirmation of all the hard work my staff and I have put in over these past 15 years," said Braunstein. "It's an honor to be part of the 49ers, a team my dad introduced me to when I was a young boy. We would collect milk cartons for discounts to tickets at Kezar Stadium. I know my dad would be proud that my show is now part of this historic team."
Named the Pop Warner Little Scholars NFL Team of the Year in 2017 for its collective youth football efforts, the San Francisco 49ers have a large amount of programming centered on engaging youth through sports. Throughout the year the team celebrates grassroots football with free youth camps, a local Coach of the Year award, Player of the Week awards, and its USA Football partnership.
At the high school level, 49ers youth sports efforts include hosting the unique 43-year-old local prep football tradition known as the Charlie Wedemeyer All-Star Football Game and the annual Friday Night Lights double header at Levi's Stadium.
For the past two years the 49ers have hosted the Cal-Hi Sports Bay Area Awards banquet, which honors outstanding high school athletes all around the Bay Area. Over the past 15 years, athletes and coaches at the banquet have received nearly $500,000 in college scholarships and gifts to schools.
Also new for 2017 from the 49ers content factory is a behind-the-scenes three-part digital series that will be produced by 49ers Studios throughout the preseason titled, "Brick by Brick." The program will chronicle the nascent beginnings of a new era of 49ers football, led by general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan. The series will feature exclusive footage that will bring the Faithful closer to the team than ever before.