I Can’t Believe I Missed This…

Midnight Madness tips off tonight. Sadly, not at midnight, but around 7:00. For whatever reason the NCAA chose to move back the official midnight to “sometime that day.”

Yeah, I know why, and that’s the point. The homongenization of professional sports, one of the main reasons we all watch and love college basketball, is trickling down. And I hate that.

You get fined in the NFL if your sock doesn’t go all the way into your knee pad. The NBA has a dress code. Everything is orchestrated.

College basketball has storming the court. Football has tearing down of goalposts. Adam Morrison once had a nationally-famous moustache in college. Now, I couldn’t tell you if he played for Boston, LA, or anywhere in between.

Please, somebody, stop taking the color from the college game. I don’t need a luxury suite, and I don’t need some contrived loudspeaker music or Jumbotron telling me to cheer Dee-Fense. Give me a crappy-ass bleacher seat in Trask and I’ll take care of the rest.

(Side note: did you ever notice the only time you see that worn out, cut out, big “D” in one guy’s hand and a fence in the other guy’s hand is at a pro game?)

Ironically, that wasn’t even the point when I chose to check back in at 9:00 on a Thursday night. This is what I can’t believe I missed.

Thanks to my friends over at G:TB, I took the time to read Ms. Schreiber’s brilliantly insightful column. You should read the entire column as well, but also check out the G:TB take. Here’s why. Though she didn’t go down this path, she put a direct hit on why blogs are gaining more and more momentum.

What’s more, G:TB adds to the viewpoint, perfectly, that “The most poisonous aspect of the current sporting environment is that the games themselves don’t matter any more. Or, more accurately, they only serve as vehicles for whatever ratings-driven controversy ESPN and FOX and the rest choose to push this week.”

Another bullseye.

I may not be clear tonight because it’s getting late, and I’m tired. But here’s the point:

To fans, the games matter. They always do. In the MSM, “the show” has taken on its own life and become more important than what is ocurring on the field and in homes. Let’s get people talking about something–anything–as long as we’re creating some sort of controversy to get eyeballs on our station/site. Then we can charge a poopie-load for advertising.

I get it. That’s a sustainable model. Problem is, the content is no longer about quality, its about velocity. In 1990, that didn’t matter. Now, people have a choice. More and more, they are exercising that option.

The best example I can think of right now is the NFL. Remember when ESPNs NFL Primetime first came out? There was no way you’d miss that show. It was chock full of highlights and stats, with a modicum of opinion. Boomer and Tom Jackson had some fun, too. It was 30, then 60, great minutes.

Now, that model is flipped with every name and voice you can muster contributing. And there are 47 of those shows. I can’t take the volume.

Blogs–like G:TB, The Extrapolater, and even Fox’s Jeff Goodman–are the way people want to get their news and opinion. Give them facts. Give them quotes. Give them your interpretation of the facts and quotes. Have a little fun in the process. Treat them like people with their own opinion.

This isn’t really an MSM rant, though. Goodman, Katz, Whelliston, Parrish all do a good job. But their best work is always online. They don’t have to try to “stand out” there.

You don’t have to be first, nor do you have to be the loudest. Just be the best, and part of the best is delivering to your audience what they want to consume.

The MSMers that don’t get this are missing the point. I’m not ashamed to say it’s why blogs like mine, and the ones I’ve mentioned above, are successful. They are smarter. Better. And they don’t tell you what to think.

I reserve the right to rewrite this post in a more intelligent manner tomorrow. But I had to get hat off my chest.


~ by mglitos on October 12, 2007.

2 Responses to “I Can’t Believe I Missed This…”

  1. I couldn’t agree with you more – I used to watch pre-game shows and post-game shows all the time, but now you’d probably have to pay me to sit through one. I could blame that on the fact that I became a dad and don’t have all day to watch sports any more, but the fact is, even if I had time to watch those shows, I’d be surfing around for a rerun of Scrubs or watching one of my backlog of Daily Show episodes.

  2. Though maybe more because it hits home with me, I think you’d enjoy “The Show” on MojoHD. If you get that channel and like the game and the personal stories rather than the Fox and ESPN b.s., you’ll enjoy it (even though it’s slightly outdated now, seeing as how half of them are playing in the playoffs right now…).

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