“Of course we’re going to lead with the Playoff.”

Aw, isn’t this cute?  The 800-pound gorilla in the room has concerns ($$).

“It’s time to take a little reset as far as we’re concerned,” said Lee Fitting, ESPN’s senior vice president of production overseeing college football. “Obviously, the Playoff needs to remain a priority A) for the sport and B) for business. But at the same time, I’m worried that we’ve gone a little too far away from what makes college football great — and that is that there is something in every game for the fans out there. It’s not just the top four, five, six or seven teams who are playing for something.”

“If we just become too much about Playoff and you lose one game, and we’re saying, ‘Forget about them, they lost the game. They’re out. They’re done,’” Fitting said. “I hate that. I don’t want to hear that. ‘If Penn State loses in September, they’re out. They’re done.’ I mean, they’re Penn State. They have an enormous national following. They’re a huge part of the fabric of college football. They’re not done. They may be out of the Playoff race today. But their games are still relevant to their fan base and in the conference. They are a big part of the sport. So how do we continue to cover them properly?”

Gosh, however did that happen?

But first, [ESPN’s College GameDay] would talk about the College Football Playoff. Ohio State’s first mention came 40 seconds into the broadcast, with Clemson following just after the minute mark. Features and discussions regarding Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Notre Dame — the four teams that would make the Playoff in 2020 — combined for more than 45 minutes of the three-hour broadcast. When Jimbo Fisher popped on the screen for a pregame interview leading into Texas A&M’s game against Auburn, the first question posed to the Aggies’ head coach was about his fifth-ranked team’s Playoff positioning. The word “Playoff” appeared in a closed-captioning transcript of the episode (provided by college football archivist Tim Burke) 27 times. Only the championship weekend edition of GameDay on Dec. 19 had more Playoff mentions (35).

These people are so full of shit.

29 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs, ESPN Is The Devil

29 responses to ““Of course we’re going to lead with the Playoff.”

  1. College Gameday has become tedious. I watched the episode from Augusta National … that’s it.

    It’s all playoff, all the time. It’s all Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Notre Dame (you know they want Texas and USC in that conversation) all the time.

    It’s only going to get worse as we move into the brave new world that’s going to solve all of CFB’s problems.

    Liked by 2 people

    • The year before I watched the episode from the Magic Kingdom because my daughter was working that morning and I wanted to see if I could see her and parts of the episode from Athens just to see the crowd.

      Liked by 1 person

      • rickymcdurden

        I turn it on in the morning for the nostalgia hit from the intro and it will usually remain on as background noise until the Noon games start (whether at home or at our tailgate). I don’t think I’ve devoted time to actually listening to a single segment of that show in… 15 years?

        Like

    • Russ

      I try to forget the Gameday stain on ANGC. Those two things are at the opposite ends of the spectrum to me.

      Like

    • I turn it on at 11:55 to see the picks. I seriously haven’t watched more than that in years.

      Like

  2. RangerRuss

    Bluto, I appreciate that down to earth assessment. They are full of shit.

    Liked by 8 people

  3. ApalachDawg aux Bruxelles

    Espn is killing the thing that it is supposed to be enabling. They are the housing bubble of a housing bubble.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. The thing that gets even more tedious is when the announcers of a game not including a putative playoff contender ends up talking about the playoff for half the third quarter of a close game. I don’t care about Quint Kessenich’s take on the playoffs, or Dan Orlovsky’s reasoning why Texas A&M should be in over Oklahoma if I am watching Georgia v. Missouri or, for that matter, Tuesday night MACtion.

    I really don’t — and yet, that’s what they talk about. Nonstop.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I don’t care what Quint Kessenich or Dan Orlovsky has to say about anything. While I don’t love Scott Howard, I need to get the software that synchs the radio feed to the TV feed for this season.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Tony BarnFart

        Yes…. and / or are we sure it’s against ESPN et al’s business interest to offer a natural, stadium-sound only amplification to the broadcast ? Seems like the customers want it and Mickey could really cut some dead weight in the talking heads department. I know I can do a workaround but I’d need 5 pt surround sound to do it and I’m not really a super TV enthusiast anyway.

        About 10 years ago, the UGA-Tennessee broadcast from Athens had technical difficulties for about half of the game, resulting in only the field level microphones operating and the damn experience was glorious. I could hear Brook Whitmire as clear as if I had been in the stadium, the redcoat band, coaches barking, QB cadences…….dare to dream.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Morris Day

        ee, I have one of these, works well, has an auxiliary/headphone audio jack and it’s portable. https://www.sportsyncradio.com/

        Liked by 1 person

  5. TN Dawg

    It’s the same people that produce our news content.

    Like

    • Let’s not fucking go there, okay?

      I’m not in the mood to shut a comment thread down. Or you, for that matter.

      Like

      • TN Dawg

        Okay.

        Like

      • Down Island Way

        Senator, not wading into the news content issue, isn’t the 800 pounder in the room pushing the news content/narrative on cfp expansion and will continue to do so with every breath of every talking head on Mickeys payroll…not one to roll up the white flag, the extent that Mickeys tentacles reaches into row HD has shown me the door on expansion and any other nail they choose to drive into the coffin known as college football…

        Like

  6. Ran A

    Yup… Where you sit in play-off positions will drive who is on TV and who isn’t. Georgia will be fine, but if you are a middle of the road team, and not having a good year – – then you had better go to the game or enjoy your local broadcast.

    Like

  7. Spot on Senator. And what’s sad is that there is an easy solution to generate fan interest each week for all televised games ( which still equals more eyeballs = more $$$$).

    Celebrate the traditions. Focus on a key player or two to watch for each team. Get better game announcers who do their homework and can provide meaningful insights. Tell the on field reporters to skip cliches and interview interesting fans, sideline personnel, talk about unique traditions or stadium features, etc. In other words, make an effort to make each broadcast interesting with a focus on that particular game and not as just a piece of some type of playoff puzzle.

    But ESPN has become all about celebrating themselves and their role in the sports world. Gameday is all about the throng of announcers preening before the camera and little else (although a heavy dose of Maria Taylor is fine by me, but I digress).

    I could win an Emmy by just taking a camera and open mic while walking around the LSU campus before a game with Georgia. The sites, sounds, atmosphere, people, etc. are compelling. Same for Athens before Tech, Harvard before The Game, and on and on.

    Ahhh F it. Everybody get the hell of my lawn!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Russ

      I agree with you, but I fear a torrent of Tom Rinaldi tear jerker pieces instead of the fun things that make (made?) college football great.

      ESPN could screw up a one-car parade.

      Liked by 4 people

      • 79dawg

        Good news first: Tom Rinaldi is now at Fox!

        Bad news: there are probably a hundred minier-Rinaldi’s already at ESPN lined up to do the same crap (if not worse)…

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Greg

    BAH!!!….they don’t always get it wrong.

    Got to give them credit for Chris Fowler referring to Tennessee fans (’99??) as” Tennessee Trailer Trash”……they have that going for them.

    Heard that one live, bout spit in my beer…

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Ozam

    Calling them full of shit is an insult to all the good shit!😉

    Seriously…. Is like the kid who kills his parents and asks for compassion as an orphan.

    ESPN went from making sports great to utter trash. I’ll watch college football games and F1, but almost never randomly turn it on.

    Like

  10. californiadawg

    “I mean, they’re Penn State. They’re a huge part of the fabric of college football. They’re not done.”

    Not only are they done as a powerhouse (thank James Franklin for that) they should have been nuked out of existence post-Sandusky.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. PTC DAWG

    I’m digging the upgraded schedule….

    Like

  12. BuffaloSpringfield

    So how exactly is Mickey making money if we all deny that Game Day is not a staple of our Saturday’s. Small percentage here but as for me Sports Center was a thing till it became trash. Essentially ESPN is gonna do to CFP the same thing as they did to Sports Center. Go check to see baseball scores and there a tractor pull in Wyoming. Try and see some other college football updates while promos of the next pay per view fight keeps floating across the bottom, along with England vs. Spain soccer scores. There’s the old radio…..situational annalists abound.
    Can you see the resemblance between the Golf Channel/Sports Center since their deal with Viacom/CBS, Comcast/NBC Sports and wait for it Disney/ESPN + ? The PGA is starting their own format of NIL where it doesn’t mater if you win a tournament or not the top ten golfers will now split up a pot not on how well they played but how well their social media is portrayed.
    Everyone gets a trophy and gets paid. Problems exist, we are the payees.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. 81Dog

    The poor mouthing is simply a prelude to negotiating the price and terms to Disney. None of it happens without Disney, who has exclusive bargaining rights through (I think) 2025 or 26. ADs want the money now, Disney wants to avoid a bidding war. Too much cash for everyone to pass up making a deal now.

    Of course the media guys are being disingenuous about their interest. It’s a big part of what they do. “Dont look at us, think about how we just do it for you viewers!” If it’s good for fans, and I’m not saying it is, it’s only a byproduct of them getting what they want.

    Like