Ever watch the two line judges come running in to stop the ball? When it is your team their judgment is often too short and too long for the other team. Then when the precise location has been determined the chains are brought out only to tell us that it is now fourth and three links. While the outcome of the game may depends upon the officials flawed estimations, generally the placement is close enough to the casual view without his hopes and dreams of vicarious glory invested the final score.
Yesterday's ACC Championship game had announced attendance of 53,927. Anyone watching the game could see that this number and the visuals did not add up. For those that did not see the event, this was not a fill just the lower deck event. There were not enough fans filling seats that anything would make this stadium look full.
Yet there was the ever present spin:
Tampa Bay Sports Commission executive director Rob Higgins said. "I'm confident we can look in the mirror and say we did absolutely everything we could to try to create the best atmosphere."
Look in the mirror has to look better than the video tape. And they were really looking for that quite open atmosphere.
Higgins said his group distributed returned tickets to more than 80 local charities and groups.
Could not give ticket away.
He wouldn't say if the low ticket sale would mean a financial loss and there still were associated events, including a concert and high school all-star game, then a youth football gala today.
The losses are too ugly for a family newspaper.
"As a whole, I'd say we're pleased on so many things," Kelly said, referring to creating a 48-hour celebration of ACC football, "but we have to get better in terms of reaching our (attendance) goal."
Missing quote, "And now I need to go back to my Sit and Spin from the nice people at Kenner."
The change in venue from Jacksonville to Tampa was designed to fix the attendance problem but as this fiasco shows the issue is with the product, ACC football. Both the SEC and Big 12 (at least filling the lower deck) had fans in the stands for their games so blaming the economy does not hold water. The problem here is the product and the lack of customers willing to pony up.
A real suggestion for the ACC is to schedule their football game around basketball games to be played in Tampa that weekend. Invite six ACC schools to play games OOC games over the same weekend in Tampa with two games on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Sadly, resorting to adding basketball to the ACC Championship game mix would be an admission the Atlantic Coast (is still a basketball) Conference.
The officials have measured and it is now 3rd and 16.
Mr. Kelly in an earlier interview about the game.
Video from the endzone--fuzzy and jiggly.