ESPN hasn't stabbed anyone in the back. Sega approached ESPN for the name deal and paid them a huge wad of cash to get the liscense. ESPN has nothing to do with the game. They seem smart to me, they're milking both cows at the same time and all the milk is green.
Here is the blurb from Gamespot and how they descibe it.
Under the current partnership's terms, Sega agreed to brand its sports games "ESPN Videogames," and ESPN was to maximize the "on-air integration of ESPN Videogames with ESPN programming or through promotional and event tie-ins."
ESPN Videogames is supported by an advertising campaign that airs commercials on the network.
However, there is no contractual agreement that prevents video games from publishers other than Sega from being featured in commercial ads on ESPN.