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Thursday Links

Back after being away from a computer for most of the morning. Let’s go into sports and the upfronts. Fox and the CW go today.

ESPN’s Suzy Kolber adds a new role to her resume. She’ll be host of the pre-race show, NASCAR Countdown. The sideline reporter for Monday Night Football will be double duty as she’ll host the pre-race show and also be on the sidelines. Brent Musburger will be in-race host. Whatever.

Houston Rockets coach (for now) Jeff Van Gundy will be doing some work for ESPN/ABC this weekend.

I saw a couple of blogs on this yesterday. ESPN employees were encouraged to wear Arena Football League t-shirts to work to welcome AFL officials to Bristol. The Minneapolis-St. Paul Star-Tribune calls the stunt a conflict of interest. I agree, but then again, ESPN is all-knowing and sets the sports agenda so what people see as a conflict of interest is a promotion opportunity for the Alleged Worldwide Leader.

The UConn Huskies have a new TV outlet for football and basketball.

CBS golf analyst David Feherty made an appearance at a Denver-area luncheon the other day.

Some St. Louis Cardinals fans don’t have access to an additional 20 games added to the Fox Sports Midwest schedule.

Jeffrey Flanagan of the Kansas City Star says the court decision against the NFL Network and for Comcast to put the channel on a sports tier will do nothing but help the cable industry.

To the upfronts.

Fox unveils its lineup today. It tries to come back to the sitcom genre which it did so well when it launched in the late 1980’s. One that has potential is “Back to You” which brings Kelsey Grammer and Patricia Heaton back to series television. Gary Levin of USA Today handicaps the Fox fall season.

The CW also takes the wraps off its lineup today at Madison Square Garden. Levin has his take on it.

Here’s the CW lineup:

CW’s fall lineup (new shows in bold; new time slots in italics).

8 p.m. -Everybody Hates Chris
8:30 – Aliens in America
9 – Girlfriends
9:30 – The Game

8 – Beauty and the Geek
9 – The Reaper

8 – America’s Next Top Model
9 – Gossip Girl

8 – Smallville
9 – Supernatural

8 WWE Smackdown

7 – CW Now
7:30 – Online Nation
8 – Life Is Wild
9 – America’s Next Top Model (repeat)

Michael Ausiello of TV Guide.com is blogging live from the CW Upfronts. And so is Virginia Heffernan of the New York Times.