Friday, January 14, 2011

Ratings dissapoint for Kraft Bowl

One often overlooked asset of BC football is that we are a historically good TV draw. We have had high ratings on all ESPN platforms. Raycom usually jumps at the chance to broadcast our games. Up until this year our ability to spike TV ratings was the only silver lining to selecting BC in a bowl game. Maybe that isn't the case anymore. Ratings for the Kraft Bowl were down 65%. That is a huge drop. When you consider that the game was moved to January 9th and to a Sunday night the number should have been much better. Since BC was in both games, logic would point to the opponent as the driving force in the decline. USC is a great TV draw and Nevada, not so much. But if BC is going to take credit for the stellar ratings vs USC, than we have to take some of the blame for the stinker against Nevada.

The lack of Neilsen Eagle fans can be attributed to many things. I think the long layoff, the lack of storylines and the frustrating style of play turned off many casual BC fans. But there is also something to be said for how BC presents itself to its own fans. The constant lowering of expectations and playing up "the little engine that could" narrative grows stale or leaves BC fans wondering when are we ever going to get better. BC is quick to remind people of the turmoil of the Jags firing but like TOB touting the gambling scandal eventually it becomes a tired crutch. And a narrative, while important in selling a program to the media and recruits, doesn't make the product on the field any more exciting.

I think a new offensive coordinator and maturing team will win back some of BC's casual/TV only fans. But it is only a step. I think Gene needs to use his influence on Spaz to be more aggressive in his game management. Why should people watch if we keep playing it safe and not to lose. I also know it is hard for Spaz to be something he is not, but a little more optimism in his interviews would go a long way. His candid assessments at halftime would be charming if we were winning big. When you are barely over .500 they often come off as defeatist.

In the long run BC will always be a big market team that is an attractive TV partner. But I hope Gene works with ESPN and the ACC on how to make BC a better ratings generator. It our only hope to ever get into a decent bowl game.


mod34b said...

"I think a new offensive coordinator and maturing team will win back some of BC's casual/TV only fans. "

Let's hope. But not if it's Ryan Day. He has not shown he can get the offense going. In fact, we can't blame Tranq for everything. The receivers coach - Day - certainly did not do the job prepping his boys for the bowl.

Curious there is no announcement yet. If it was a done deal with Day one would think there would have been a quick announcement already. Maybe - just maybe - GDF and Spaz are really looking for a fresh face with new ideas for The offense.

blist said...

Agree Mod - I like the idea of RD, but the receivers didn't look very good this year. Swigert looked like he had The Thing's hands the last game.
I have come this year to look at watching BC games this way: at the holidays, do you want to get stuck with the relative who is Debbie Downer - always seeming so negative and woe-is-me? Why spend 4 hours with Spaz, who almost seems to say "How can I get a first down when I didn't even have a QB on the roster the start of last year?"
I hate to say, I decided catching up on sleep was much better than watching the second half of the Bowl (in fairness to me, I am sleep deprived) - Run run pass punt. Ugh.

mod34b said...

Off topic

I see UConn has hired former Syracuse coach Paul Pasqualoni....he is already talking about recruiting. Wonder if this will be problem for BC. Maybe now tougher to get Connecticut player s (all 2 of them)

"This was, for me, absolutely the right fit," he said. "It's about being comfortable and knowing the terrain. I sincerely feel we can go out and do a great job recruiting within a five-hour radius."

Big Jack Krack said...

BC Football is unwatchable to the casual BC fan. Only we diehards will watch the Spaz/Nyquil offense.

One brother from Massachusetts said that when BC played for the field goal after Kuechly's interception, he shut the game off.

"Are you kidding me", he said.

Hopefully this year was rock bottom for our offense.

bobble said...

I think you are reading into it too much. I believe the primary factor for the poor ratings was the time. 9 PM on the east coast, the game didn't end til 12:30. For us thats not a big deal because we obviously want to watch and see how this team had developed after 6 weeks. But for most people it is too late to be up on a Sunday night. Casual fans in the New England area aren't going to watch like they would if it was earlier. I know some alumni who didn't even watch the whole game.

Big Jack Krack said...

Also - by January 9th we were all "footballed out". This year was literally too much bowl football. I think the Auburn-Oregon game was even down - anti-climatic with all of the coverage. It was played late on a work night for the east coast, just like our game.

Even though it was a good game, it ended to late for many fans.

As for our game, Nevada had no buzz either, except to their fans - so they were in the same boat we were.

No buzz versus un-watchable = down 65%.

Joe said...

I'm with bobble and BJK. I'm a BC alum and love watching any game that's on t.v. But a 9 pm start with work early on Monday morning is tough. I made it to the 4th quarter before I fell asleep during a commercial. Also, I think the fact that the game was at the complete end of the Bowl season didn't help, and neither did the fact that the general football-watching public just got 3 great NFL playoff games over the past two days. Frankly, by 9 pm on Sunday, *I* was kind of tired of watching football, and I didn't even care about any of the NFL games.

Matt said...

Agreed. And honestly, I think I saw ONE commercial for our game (and I watch A LOT) of ESPN. All of the hype was for the BCS games, and by the time of our game it was as if no one cared for anything other than the national championship. Obviously understandable, but if ESPN wanted better ratings for our game they should have promoted it better for those casual fans out there.

But I agree...late start time and lots of NFL hype definitely infringed as well.

Deacon Drake said...

9 pm on a Sunday says it all... MLB took years to figure out why their ratings were down with the 8:45 world series start times.

It's acceptable on a Friday/Saturday, but even I was passed out shortly after the punt return.

Scott said...

BC was a boring team this year, so I'm not surprised we failed to pull our weight.

However, the Kraft Bowl also had a big hand by moving the game to 9:00pm ET. Kraft was clearly didn't expect an east coast team, which makes sense given that the Bowl was designed to pair a PAC 10 v. MWC team. Kraft assumed the bowl would only have west coast viewers and interest.

eagleboston said...

How about if we hire Mike Leach to run our offense? I'm only half-joking.

Bravesbill said...

More proof that BC relies more on its opponent to bring in the television viewing eyes.