Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Class Free Zone

As stated here before gambling is to college football as prosituition is to sex. And here to prove than anology with all the class or a tarted-up harlet:

Wake Forest Demon Deacons versus Navy Midshipmen College Football Odds and Pick Gamblers Television

There is one benefit from watching these videos...you're too sick to pack on those holiday pounds.


Monday, December 22, 2008

The "Y" Bowls

Not every bowl game can have great teams, at a great time, at a great venue, in a great location. Here is a list of the “have not-iest” games:

EagleBank Bowl
Date Dec. 20
Teams Wake Forest vs. Navy

Venue RFK

Location Washington, D.C.

Other 11:00 a.m. kickoff

On the good side Navy got a real break on travel expenses. The minuses: bad stadium, temperatures in the high 30’s, and early kickoff (attendance: 28,777)

magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl
Date Dec. 20
Teams South Florida vs. Memphis

Venue Tropicana Field

Location St. Petersburg, FL

Other Isn’t Skype free

The Trop is bad baseball venue and even worse for football. The field looked like it had snow on it except where they covered up the baseball dirt area. On the positive side ESPN announcers said MagicJack more than the required number of times. (attendance: 25,205)

Emerald Bowl
Date Dec. 27 ESPN
Teams Miami vs. California

Venue AT&T Park

Location San Francisco, Calif.

Saturday by the bay but another of the baseball stadium game. AT&T park feature the endzone wall and the ever popular shared sideline.

Roady’s Humanitarian Bowl
Dec. 30
Teams Maryland vs. Nevada

Venue Bronco Stadium

Location Boise, ID

Other: High temperature of 40 with rain

Maryland fans are falling all over themselves to book airline tickets for a winter trip to land of the Smurf Turf. This game has been the boobie prize of the
ACC for several years now. Which is worse for Ralph and the boy: staying home for the holidays or seeing the sites in Boise.

Jan. 6
Teams Tulsa vs. Ball State

Venue Ladd-Peebles stadium

Location Mobile, AL

Other GMAC is in serious trouble

The only bowl game using Federal bailout money the only issue here is the late dat of this game. Yes, the hardcore college football fan will care but by January 6th most are looking forward to next fall.

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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Canary In the Mine

Is there such phenomenon as fan fatigue? Anyone who has taken an economics class is familiar with the concept of the law of diminishing return. At a certain point additional input will not result in additional output. A simple why to look at the issue is that you could put five grains of wheat in a pot and get five nice plants but would have little success if you put 500 or 5,000 grains in that limited space.

Much has been made this week of the prices that Orange Bowl tickets are selling for and more specifically the weak demand on the part of Virginia Tech fans. Usually VT fans are among the most loyal. Loyal in this case comes with the expectation that they will open their wallets and buy. Unfortunately fans cannot afford the show their passion with dollars becoming increasing limited. Looking at the rear view mirror, the ACC Championship Game and the lack of attendance may have been the canary in the mine telling us that all is not right in the land of college football. Further that the Orange Bowl may be a preview of a new reality where the ability of fans to fund ever more expensive programs.

There will be those that will look recession proof as the growing continue be it a greatly reduced pace. But give the grimness of the current economic landscape we could see first a reduction in the “ESPN-make a Bowl” games followed by programs having to do more with less and even some schools dropping out of the FBS group.

Link to video

Perhaps on the part of VT fans their may be some fatigue of making the trip to Miami for a second straight year coupled with the knowledge that they may not be the best team in the ACC (Georgia Tech is ranked much higher) and the they are played the very unsexy University of Cincinnati Beatcats. Bearcats fans are at least excited by the novelty of attending a BCS game but are still considered by footballs old money are unworthy of a serious bowl game.

Yes, Ohio, it’s not just the school in Columbus that can play its way into the Bowl Championship Series – and the Bearcats can’t wait to begin using that as a selling point to recruits. So sometime Friday, a box of Orange Bowl knickknacks will arrive in Cincinnati, visual evidence of the Bearcats’ breakout season that landed them in a BCS game for the first time.

For more information about bowl ticket prices check out the CNBC coverage.

People the current economic environment is uglier than anything since the 1970's (and into the early 80's), the readjustment in the larger economy will trickle down to college football. Where will your team be when the dust clears?

12/22--Addendum: as Scott Armstrong points out the ticket is the cheap part of the bowl experience.

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Sunday, December 07, 2008

Exacting Work

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.

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