Autumn is America is dominated by football. Between the NCAA and NFL football dominates the sports scene throughout the autumn. There are other sports going on but the best they can hope for is to be second fiddle to football. So which sports organization stands to gain the most should the NFL lockout extend well into the autumn.
The obvious answer would seem to be the NCAA. The schools and conferences (who do the actual scheduling) are smart enough to set start times to TBA. Which means it would be easy for a few schools to move some games to Sunday to capitalize on the lack of NFL games. Still though, NCAA football is already close to its saturation point. While they will benefit there are those who can benefit more.
The NHL will get some traction with the NFL lockout. Their regular season starts in October. Lack of NFL games will give them more attention from the national and various local sports media outlets. I think though the NHL has more to gain from the inevitable NBA lockout. The NHL is a 30 team league that plays 80 regular season games and lets 16 teams (over half) into the playoffs. Early season games are hard to get up for unless you are a hardcore obsessed hockey fan.
There are touring sports like PGA golf and NASCAR which can benefit. The big golf tournaments are pretty much done by autumn which will make it hard for them to get a lot more attention. NASCAR should do pretty good with an NFL lockout. The "Chase For the Cup" will be going on in NASCAR during the autumn. Still though, there is one organization which can benefit more.
For year the MLB (Major League Baseball) playoffs have been overshadowed by early regular season NFL. Unless you live in New York or a city with a team in the MLB playoffs there is very little interest. Even in many cities the NFL gets more attention than a local baseball team in the playoffs. Without the NFL to compete with the 2011 MLB playoffs could be the most watched in a generation.