The ACC and ABC/ESPN are moving the ACC Championship Game to prime time
. The hope is that the new time slot improves ratings and attendance. TV ratings will certainly improve, but does anyone really think the evening kickoff will improve attendance? I don't think BC would have brought anymore fans if the past two ACCCGs had been in prime time. I also don't think a night game will generate any more interest among the locals. The key will always be the matchup. If a Florida team is involved or Clemson, then you will get a crowd. Otherwise, there will be plenty of empty seats.
Expectations are rising for next season's basketball team. (Thanks to Tom for the link.)
I didn't note that HD ranked Castonzo as the 23rd best player in the ACC. It will be interesting to see if any other Eagles make the list. I actually think Tennant should be ranked higher.
Athlon ranked BC No. 48 in their preview countdown.
The locals want more details on BC's campus expansion plans.
Jon Loyte is breaking into lower-level Arena football.
The larger problem with the ACCCGs aren't the teams and their draws, but the location of the games. Jacksonville in December is redolent of Hartford in April-not exactly a destination you'd want to build a weekend around. Tampa? Well, OK, it's a little warmer, but not a whole lot to do there, either.
Why not rotate between Orlando and (don't laugh) Yankee Stadium every year? These are destinations that alumni and fans can rationalize spending money on as a vacation for their whole family, undergrads will actually want to party in, and ensures that the game is within (almost) a day's drive of a majority of the campuses in the conference every other year. The advantages of Orlando are pretty obvious (has it really never been seriously considered by the ACC?), while the Yankee Stadium games would:
1)probably have a decent walk-up gate even if they failed to sell out in advance. A football configuration for YS would probably hold about 50,000- much easier to fill in a metro area like NYC than with the barns like the stadia in Tampa or Jax with their much smaller populations.
2)generate buzz for the conference in the nation's biggest media market- a market that it lacks a direct or even tangential presence in, and
3)create some credible new football tradition and legends in an elegiac sports setting for a basketball-oriented conference sorely in need of them.
If the Yankees are seriously considering opening up their park to one or two games a year, it seems that this would be as or more lucrative than ND-Army, which is a nothing more than another creampuff nc game for the Irish masquerading as an homage to football tradition. Once the novelty wears out after the first game, I'm not sure that would be a decent draw, especially with ND playing Rutgers and UConn in the Meadowlands for the next decade.
Besides, what's the point of a night game in Tampa if you have to miss the early-bird stripper specials at the, um, gentleman's clubs by the airport?
ATL - I'm one of those fans that may have benefitted from a later start time for the ACCCG. Sadly I couldn't make either, due to a Saturday morning standardized test and late Friday night classes the night before, respectively. A later start would have opened the window for at least the possibility of me making a last minute appearance in FL. I'm sure I'm more of the exception than the rule, just wanted to let you know there are some out here.
Crimson: Having been to football games in dedicated baseball-first stadia, there is no way I'd support the ACCCG in New Yankee. The sight lines are weird in baseball stadia and I just felt out of place. I don't get the NYS fixation. If you want to have it in New York (which makes sense to me, even with the weather), you have the Meadowlands and soon enough you'll have the new stadium.
There will be more fans in Charlotte as it's close enough to the Triangle that NCSU and UNC fans will show up even if their team isn't there. This isn't even to mention Clemson, MD, VT and UVa fans. Honestly, for the league to garner more respect, either FSU or Miami is going to have to step up. That is just the bottom line.
NYC is too far from the southern teams and way too expensive to host the ACCCG.
I don't dispute that it's a marginal improvement, but moving the ACCCG to nighttime is still an improvement. A late start now makes it feasible for people to travel on Saturday and arrive for the game, and that will help attendance (albeit slightly). For BC fans, it expands the number of flights one can take to arrive in the host city before the game begins-- i.e., one can leave Friday or Saturday. It also could mean not having to miss work/school on Friday to travel to the game, and that could mean a few extra fans.
The bottom line, though, is that it's more fun. It's great having all day to get ready for a big game...
I think NYC is too far for 11 other ACC schools.
Yes, you could make it from the deep southeast to NYC in a day, but just because NYC falls along the Atlantic Ocean does not mean it is ACC country. I think the name of the league is the tricky part: the ACC's relationship to the east coast is different from the Pac Ten's relationship to the west coast. The Pac Ten covers the whole coast, while the ACC really just covers the mid-to-bottom half of the east coast. The Big East shares the upper geographic half.
Also, I would love some of what Crimsoneagle is smoking if he doesn't think Notre Dame can sell out NY/NJ.
I think Crimson makes a good larger point about the ACCCG, even if I don't agree that NYC is the place to host it. Plus, he used "elegiac" and referenced "early-bird stripper specials," which both get my heart aflutter.
I do think that the game itself is about the teams AND the location--let's face it, Wake, BC, GT, Duke (if they still play football), etc. ain't exactly packing the house...we can't even sell out basketball games on campus, even during the promising years (like this past one). The conference has taken a beating largely because Miami and FSU have been down, true, but also because the conference has a bad record in BCS bowls. Unless and until that point changes, then it won't matter who represents the ACC in the Orange Bowl and probably won't matter where the game is played, so far as it aids in exposure (in say, the basketball-focused northeast).
If BC really looks to increasing its brand into the south, the game must be played in or near recruiting hotspots, if only for media coverage and name saturation. I'm sorry, but NYC and the rest of the northeast doesn't cut it. You must come south. The game must be played down here. If it's about accommodating BC alumni, then spots further north make sense, but at the expense of all the other schools as well as regional investment in the game. Plus, the only way to get BC fans to travel en masse would be to host the game in Alumni Stadium or Gillette. Even then...
ND can sell-out NYC b/c, well, they're Knute Rockne and all that. It helps them recruit NJ and PA. BC needs to stay south if they are serious about recruiting the south, even if it exacerbates our rather (deservedly) poor travel reputation. I have a feeling that wherever the game is held, outside of the northeast, you're looking at about 5,000-7,000 BC fans at the most anyway, so perhaps we should cede that in order to keep the BC brand in an ostensibly "real" football area.
Let's face it. The conference is struggling to legitimize this game. Site changes, time changes...all of this will matter not if it's Miami and FSU, both Top 5 teams again, playing for national championships. Or, until BC starts a run on dominating the conference and getting heavy into the national scene and beating big-time competition in big-time bowls.
Guess which one will probably happen first?
But I do commend the outside-the-box thinking. Especially about the early-bird specials.
I think this is just a wait and see kind of thing. The ACC writ large (expanded), and BC in the south, are just such new concepts that it may take awhile to get this game figured out.
Charlotte - Charlotte - Charlotte!!!!!
Post a Comment