Category Archives: ESPN Is The Devil

Mark May lives to fight another day.

Although it’ll be on ABC instead of ESPN.

The ABC and ESPN studios will also see changes for 2015. John Saunders will continue to anchor Saturday’s ABC studio coverage, along with second-year analyst Mack Brown and 10-year ESPN analyst Mark May, who will make the switch from ESPN’s studio.

Enjoy that, Mack.

Meanwhile it looks like ESPN’s already groomed its next Mark May.

ESPN’s new studio trio features host Adnan Virk with analysts Joey Galloway and Danny Kanell, who will handle pre-game, halftime and post-game reporting on Thursday, Friday and Saturday during the season.

Oh, goody.  I look forward to another season of SEC trolling/bashing by Kanell.  Well, I would if I actually watched ESPN in the studio.

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Filed under ESPN Is The Devil

“I think eventually ESPN becomes a business that is sold directly to the consumers.”

Mickey is clearly warning its broadcast partners that the times, they are a-changin’.  Think they’re paying attention?

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More proof that FPI is the new QBR

The Football Power Index (FPI) is a measure of team strength that is meant to be the best predictor of a team’s performance going forward for the rest of the season. FPI represents how many points above or below average a team is. Projected results are based on 10,000 simulations of the rest of the season using FPI, results to date, and the remaining schedule. Ratings and projections update daily.”

So obviously, we can take this bad boy to the bank.

I guess ESPN was really impressed with G-Day.

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Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

First, they came for Keith Olbermann.

You may have heard recently that ESPN is cutting the cords with some of its high-priced talent, like Keith Olbermann and Bill Simmons.  It’s not because the WWL has a problem with their work.

It’s just the result of some good old-fashioned cost cutting.  There’s a piece up at the Wall Street Journal about ESPN’s bottom line, and while I don’t subscribe to the WSJ, I did run across a couple of tweets that get the message across.

That tension between on-line video service and cable broadcast service ain’t going away, and you can see how ESPN is rapidly moving to a spot twixt a rock and a hard place.  How rapidly? Well…

That’s not a positive trend.  And it shouldn’t be too hard to figure out what’ll eventually come if ESPN keeps taking the hit.

You may not care about the loss of Olbermann or Simmons.  (I don’t.)  But you are kidding yourself if you think it stops there.  If enough bleeding occurs, sooner or later that will impact rights fees.

Nobody – at least nobody dependent on conference broadcast network revenues – is going to like it when the 800-pound gorilla goes on a diet.  But I’m sure Greg Sankey is on the mother as I type this.

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UPDATE:  Speaking of Sankey, David Wunderlich sees one silver lining for the SEC in the approaching dark cloud.

If traditional pay TV collapses in the future, the SEC won’t be stuck with expensive studios and broadcast equipment to liquidate and contracts with talent to buy out. Its institutions will have to deal with a loss of revenue, but so will everyone else, and the conference won’t have to worry about writing off the considerable losses that winding down a TV network would mean. I’m sure that Greg Sankey is a good person to be running an athletic conference, but I don’t see anything in his background that suggests he’s the person to figure out the future of broadcasting where to date all others have failed.

That’s a fair point.  It’s also worth pondering whether further conference expansion is such a great idea right now.  We’ll see how pleased Jim Delany is with Rutgers and Maryland if the BTN business model falls apart.

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Now they’re worried about tradition.

Chris Low, I presume you mean well with this post, but the concept of the entity whose spending has done more to disrupt the face of college football over the last decade being concerned about preserving its traditions strikes me as one of the more ironic, horse-out-of-the-barn notions Mickey’s minions could offer these days.

Thanks for the chuckle, though.

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Filed under College Football, ESPN Is The Devil

They gave you the best years of their lives, Mickey.

Brian Cook looks at my recent post about ESPN’s future in an unbundled world, takes an inferred point from my post and makes it quite specific:

ESPN is currently subsidized by a lot of people who do not care about sports. When the internet is television, that goes away—and it does not necessarily get replaced one for one.

This is why adding Maryland and especially Rutgers was folly. In the near future the only people who get the Big Ten Network are going to be people interested in the Big Ten. They will no longer be able to snatch a dollar from the pocket of every cable subscriber in New Jersey who is a Tulane man. This is going to happen in ten years, at which point whatever short-term revenue gain will be spent, Jim Delany will have his bonus, and the Big Ten will be stuck with a couple of teams nobody cares about.

It’s not just the Big Ten, and it’s not just being stuck with the aftermath of making questionable expansion decisions.  Every P5 conference is guilty of the latter and the Pac-12 is even more heavily invested in its broadcast network than Delany’s conference is.  What do these guys prepare for when their business model is blown to the skies?

Judging from their track record, we won’t find out the answer to that question until it’s already happened.

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Filed under College Football, ESPN Is The Devil, It's Just Bidness

From the people who brought you QBR…

… comes preseason FPI.

I have no idea how the math works, but I can tell you that Georgia’s ranking went up three spots since March “after gaining a starter”.  Take that for what it’s worth.

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Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, Stats Geek!