The 2012-2013 bowl schedule has been released (below) and once again the B1G has scheduled 4 bowl games at the same time on New Years Day. WHY? The conference wants to own New Years Day. Okay? The B1G has the Rose Bowl at 4 p.m. and wants to lead-in with another big-time bowl game. But why schedule 4 games in that time-slot? There are not enough TV channels to broadcast them all simultaneously and as a result the TicketCity Bowl gets relegated to ESPNU. Theoretically, Ohio State, Michigan, Nebraska, and Wisconsin could all be competing against one another in the same time-slot. Why does the B1G continue to schedule this?
You cannot watch four games at one time. Even with home entertainment advances such as picture in picture it is not possible to watch four games at once. I’m not a channel-flipper. However, I have been around channel-flippers enough to know even a channel flipper cannot successfully follow the narrative of four games at once. It is possible to follow two games. I concede that it might possibly be conceivable to successfully follow the narrative of three games simultaneously. (This should only be attempted by professionals in a controlled laboratory settings) However, even in a Buffalo Wild Wings or BWW-esque facility the human brain does not contain the requisite neuro-pathways to watch four games at once. Typically, DVRs (the greatest thing since sliced bread) do not have the capability to record for channels at once meaning a college-bowl-viewer is unable to watch all four B1G bowl games at once.
Bowl games are season ending showcases for the teams that qualify. As a football fan I like to watch the teams I follow throughout the regular season. In general B1G fans want to watch B1G teams. However when the B1G schedules four games at once B1G fans cannot watch all four B1G bowls at once. The B1G bottleneck of games scheduled at the 12-1 New Year’s Day time-slot does not adequately showcase the B1G teams playing at that time. In fact, it seems detrimental to their showcase.
I understand there is a perceived prestige to a New Year’s Day bowl game. Many of the better bowl games are scheduled for New Year’s Day and have been for years. Typically, people are on vacation for New Years and are able to travel to a bowl location and/or tune into a 12:00 kickoff time during a weekday. The more people available to watch a bowl game the more prestigious the bowl game. However, by cramming that time-slot stuffed full of B1G games you devalue the prestige of the event. The more games played at the same time the fewer eyes can watch each game.
Monetarily it makes little
cents sense for the B1G to cock-block themselves schedule-wise. Football games are television shows. Television shows make their money from commercials. Advertisers pay television show to produce audiences that will watch their commercials. Event programming like football games bring in big advertising dollars because people prefer to watch sporting event on live TV. In conclusion the larger a television audience a B1G bowl can accumulate the more they can sell their commercials for and the more money they can make. Here, the B1G diminishes it’s audience by having four bowl games compete against themselves for B1G viewership (as does the SEC because three of the games involve southerners). In theory, by playing four bowl games at the same time on New Year’s Day the B1G is costing itself money. I don’t understand it.
THE B1G BOWL SCHEDULE
Little Caesars Pizza Bowl: Dec. 26, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, B1G vs. Mid-American Conference
Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas: Dec. 28, 9 p.m. ET, ESPN, B1G vs. Big 12
Valley of the Sun Bowl (formerly known as the Insight Bowl): Dec. 29, 10:15 p.m. ET, ESPN, B1G vs. Big 12
TicketCity: Jan. 1, noon ET, ESPNU, B1G vs. Conference USA
TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl: Jan. 1, noon ET, ESPN2, B1G vs. SEC
Capital One Bowl: Jan. 1, 1 p.m. ET, TV plans TBA, B1G vs. SEC
Outback Bowl: Jan. 1, 1 p.m. ET, TV plans TBA, B1G vs. SEC
Rose Bowl Game presented by VIZO: Jan. 1, 4 p.m. ET, ESPN, BCS vs. BCS (most likely B1G vs. Pac-12)
The rest of the 2012-2013 college bowl schedule can be found here.