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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Late TV starts for Big Monday not ideal, but mostly unavoidable

Kansas players Marcus Morris (22), Sherron Collins (4) and Cole Aldrich (45) meet with head coach Bill Self during a timeout in the second half, Monday, Feb. 15, 2010 at Reed Arena in College Station, Texas.

Kansas players Marcus Morris (22), Sherron Collins (4) and Cole Aldrich (45) meet with head coach Bill Self during a timeout in the second half, Monday, Feb. 15, 2010 at Reed Arena in College Station, Texas.

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At 8 p.m. Monday, when viewers turned on ESPN to watch Kansas University’s basketball team take on Texas A&M, they had no choice but to watch the conclusion of the game between Connecticut and Villanova.

Each Monday, a 6 p.m. Big East game precedes an 8 p.m. Big 12 battle as part of ESPN’s Big Monday lineup.

After Connecticut knocked off No. 3 Villanova, the KU-A&M game didn’t reach a national TV audience until 8:17 p.m., when 13:52 remained in the first half and the Aggies led, 12-10.

Big 12 senior associate commissioner Tim Allen said he understood the point of view of frustrated fans who missed the first 6:08, but he suggested the scenario was as unavoidable as undesirable.

“Do we want them to get to our games on time? Absolutely,” said Allen, who oversees the league’s scheduling. “Do we have games in other windows where (a Big 12) game runs long and cuts into games of other conferences? Absolutely. Do we like that scenario, and do other conferences like that scenario? The answer is no, but there’s other things that play into the TV schedule as well.”

In the case of Big Monday, the primary factor is “SportsCenter.” It’s easy to suggest starting the Big East game earlier, or tipping off the Big 12 game later. Only problem is, “SportsCenter” airs 5-6 p.m. and 10-11 p.m. Considering the popularity of the show — more than 30,000 episodes have aired since 1979 — it seems unlikely the schedule will change.

“There are a lot of factors to consider. Not every game goes long,” ESPN spokesperson Mike Humes said. “And it’s not just us saying we want the game to start at X time. It’s the schools. It’s the conferences. It’s not just ESPN saying, ‘We’re going to televise the game (at 6 and 8 p.m. for Big Monday).’”

The Big 12 and ESPN are in the second year of an eight-year contract for Big Monday.

In the event of a blowout, ESPN will switch from the Big East game to the Big 12 game in the local market of the two Big 12 teams. That wasn’t possible Monday, however, since the Big East game was still a two-possession game with 1:15 left.

The Big 12 isn’t the only conference on the back end of back-to-back scheduling. For instance, an SEC hoops game will follow a Big Ten game as part of ESPN’s Super Tuesday lineup at 6 and 8 p.m.

“It’s just the nature of the business,” Allen said. “We’d all like basketball games wrapped in that neat little package. This is not a new occurrence. Games from a tough, physical league (Big East) are going to take longer than a finesse league (Big 12) because there’s more fouling and more stoppage time.”

Allen estimated of the six Big Monday games this season, about four Big 12 games reached the TV audience late. ESPN has the option each Monday of delaying the start of the Big 12 game by five minutes if it thinks the Big East game could go late, but that decision must be made an hour before the late game tips off.

There are alternatives for Big 12 fans.

ESPN displayed the option Monday, for instance, of watching the KU-A&M game online on ESPN360.com in the closing minutes of the Big East game.

Airing the start of the KU-A&M game on ESPN2 wouldn’t have worked Monday because a live Big 12 women’s game was taking place at that time. Allen said there had been discussions of moving the start of Big 12 games to ESPN Classic in the event of a late Big East game, but contractual commitments have prohibited that as an option.

“The thing we have to do a better job of with holding ESPN’s feet to the fire is switching to the next game in local markets (in the event of a blowout),” Allen said. “ESPN makes every effort to try to take the two home markets of the teams to their game. However, your definition of a blowout and the network’s may be different. The (UConn-Villanova) game got cut to two baskets (Monday), and that wasn’t big enough to take the game away.

“This is not a Big Monday deal, or a Big 12 deal. It happens with all of basketball.”

Kansas is scheduled to face Oklahoma on ESPN for the next Big Monday game at 8 p.m. in Allen Fieldhouse.

Comments

CaramelMacchMan 4 years, 5 months ago

"tough, physical league(Big East)" <----- HUH??

How do you conclude that mr. Allen.

Off subject: I also had problem when i was watching Duke at Miami. "there are only two coaches in ACC (Coach K and Coach Williams) who has winning record in ACC on the road. wow talk about the touch ACC league. man it is really hard to win on the road in ACC." - Hubert Davis.

Well.. its simple Hubert Davis.. it s because the other coaches suck. Its not because ACC is tough league.

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Edward Daub 4 years, 5 months ago

Unavoidable? Make Changes to Shorten the Length of the Games! Especially the Boring Big East. Cut Half Time from 15 Minutes to 10 Minutes! Eliminate at least 1 Coaches Time Out, (They get 5?) plus all the TV time outs and cut the Time Out time by 50%. Tell the Zebras to keep the Game moving , too much free throw loitering.

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lawrencian1991 4 years, 5 months ago

Of the 6 games that were delayed Im fair sure that 3 or 4 were more than two possession games and they still didn't switch them over until after the coaches and players shook hands. So that is a BS excuse nice try though espn you have a love affair with the east coast so there is no point in hiding it, but thank you for ruining my day by starting the KU game late.

Also, i read during the live feed of the a&m game that espn360 wasnt working that well during the game.

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Alohahawk 4 years, 5 months ago

West Virginia - Agree, That would speed up the process, but it will NEVER happen. You're asking ESPN to cut commercial time and therefore, PROFITS. As logical as your thoughts are, ESPN and East coast mentality wouldn't even consider doing that for the ACC or other East coast conferences. As for TV coverage, you ought to try living in Honolulu. With ESPN, at least we get a number of games to watch, even if we do miss the first few (?) minutes. It's CBS that I get ticked at. They broadcast what THEY feel the local/regional market wants to watch, and sometimes doesn't announce which game it will be until broadcast time. Then, if they do air the KU game, and KU is blowing out the competion, they cut to a different game. So, you wait to find out if the game is on, then, lose the end if it is a blowout. They did that to the Missouri game last year!!! To me, it's no different than watching a movie, or any program being aired, and having it switched to something else halfway through!!

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Alohahawk 4 years, 5 months ago

West Virginia - Agree, That would speed up the process, but it will NEVER happen. You're asking ESPN to cut commercial time and therefore, PROFITS. As logical as your thoughts are, ESPN and East coast mentality wouldn't even consider doing that for the ACC or other East coast conferences. As for TV coverage, you ought to try living in Honolulu. With ESPN, at least we get a number of games to watch, even if we do miss the first few (?) minutes. It's CBS that I get ticked at. They broadcast what THEY feel the local/regional market wants to watch, and sometimes doesn't announce which game it will be until broadcast time. Then, if they do air the KU game, and KU is blowing out the competion, they cut to a different game. So, you wait to find out if the game is on, then, lose the end if it is a blowout. They did that to the Missouri game last year!!! To me, it's no different than watching a movie, or any program being aired, and having it switched to something else halfway through!!

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Alohahawk 4 years, 5 months ago

West Virginia - Agree, That would speed up the process, but it will NEVER happen. You're asking ESPN to cut commercial time and therefore, PROFITS. As logical as your thoughts are, ESPN and East coast mentality wouldn't even consider doing that for the ACC or other East coast conferences. As for TV coverage, you ought to try living in Honolulu. With ESPN, at least we get a number of games to watch, even if we do miss the first few (?) minutes. It's CBS that I get ticked at. They broadcast what THEY feel the local/regional market wants to watch, and sometimes doesn't announce which game it will be until broadcast time. Then, if they do air the KU game, and KU is blowing out the competion, they cut to a different game. So, you wait to find out if the game is on, then, lose the end if it is a blowout. They did that to the Missouri game last year!!! To me, it's no different than watching a movie, or any program being aired, and having it switched to something else halfway through!!

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Alohahawk 4 years, 5 months ago

This is my first day posting and I don't know how the above ended up in triplicate. Sorry.

Just wanted to add: When KU played Cornell, it wasn't on ESPN, but the Duke game was. I was following the KU - Cornell score at the bottom of the screen when they cut to the final minutes of KU's game, probably because ESPN thought KU was about to lose their first game. Duke fans must have been ticked at that.

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cre017 4 years, 5 months ago

2 words, split screen. They do it for a few seconds then cut away, it's BS.

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Ben Kane 4 years, 5 months ago

well it's good to see the LJW is on the pulse of the fans.

this is still inexcusable. I don't get espn360 and i believe many others don't as well. what i'd really like back is the internet radio audio which went into blackout mode in the middle of the season. It used to be the perfect option to hear play by play until ESPN picked up.

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minnhawk84 4 years, 5 months ago

Any hope for the Colorado game to be on satellite this saturday? I don't have a chance at the Big XII Network up here in Big 10(11) country. FSN or somone? My Internet provider doesn't support ESPN 360........

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Lindsey Buscher 4 years, 5 months ago

Don't eliminate a coach's timeout but DEFINITELY get rid of one tv timeout per half. it breaks the game up waaaaay too much.

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Lindsey Buscher 4 years, 5 months ago

Don't eliminate a coach's timeout but DEFINITELY get rid of one tv timeout per half. it breaks the game up waaaaay too much.

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86finalfour 4 years, 5 months ago

anyone know how to listen to davis and piper over the internet during the game? I want to delay my DVR and listen to them simultaneously. Thanks in advance.

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docileboy 4 years, 5 months ago

That may be the whole idea, trying to make everyone subscribe to ESPN 360.

I'm with you on how they drag those free throws out, it is almost like another time out.

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keith horinek 4 years, 5 months ago

With all the technology we have today, why can't they switch to the big 12 games in the midwest only. leave the east games on for the east and cut away to the midwest games for the midwest. I don't think very many big 12 fans want to watch a east game and vice versa. split the country up.

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Aligned 4 years, 5 months ago

Upon reading Tim Allen’s moronic comments, I’d have to say there is little hope of getting this issue resolved. Seriously, is this the best they can do for Senior Associate Commissioner? Tim, why don’t you grow a pair and start dictating Big 12 requirements to ESPN, rather than just serving as their apologist? Who do you work for anyway?

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jaybate 4 years, 5 months ago

"Television and the Need for a Three Time Zone Conference:"

} "Games from a tough, physical league (Big East) are going to take longer than a finesse league (Big 12) because there’s more fouling and more stoppage time.”--Tim "Living in the Past" Allen

If Tim Allen is living this far in the past, it is no wonder that the Big Ten is about to strip MU and Texas from the Big 12. There isn't a team left in the Big East that plays rougher than the Big 12. Good lord! Doesn't he watch his own conference play?

} Perhaps it is time for the Big 12 to try to merge into the first three time-zone super conference before the East Coast telemarketing advantage of the early game phenomenon marginalizes midwest and west coast teams too much more. The Big 12 needs to merge with one of the Atlantic 10, Big East, or the ACC plus the Pac 10 into the Big 30. Each merged, former conference would be a division. Inter-division games would be scheduled through out the season to ensure the Big 30 gets a significant share of the "early" games on Big Monday, as well as a share of the "late" games on Big Mondays, and on any other days of the week. The Atlantic 10, say, would merge for sure to leverage itself up and not continue as the poor step sister of the Big East. The ACC might consider joining, because ACC basketball is sliding downward, in part, because the Big East's dominance of media markets and ever increasing dominance of the Bo-Wash corridor recruiting market is slowly but inexorably cutting the ACC off from both its drawing power on the east coast and from its talent base in the Bo-Wash Corridor. The Big 12 and Pac Ten should join to quit being relegated to the late game and eventually marginalized entirely in the media and recruiting wars. Complaints that a lot of teams in the Atlantic 10 are not big names is a form of snobbery that cannot be afforded. In the digital age, the world is flat in the long term and creating the broadest footprint possible on that flat map is the surest way to survive. Once no would have believed that good basketball programs could begin to flourish in all the Texas schools, but TV and TV revenues, and the chance to play a schedule of schools that did play good basketball turned the Texas programs around in 15 years. Something similar would occur with a merger with the Atlantic Ten. Of course it would be a quicker path to power to join with the ACC and Pac Ten (because of greater mutual football benefits, also), but one or the other should be pursued ASAP. The Big 12 is in peril, when MU and UT are being cherry picked, and one should never overlook the long term eroding effects of always being second banana in the television scheduling game.

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areyouserious 4 years, 5 months ago

cre017- you nailed it.........split screen is the answer. No excuses for not doing it. I love sports and sportscenter, but i am tired of the controlling monopoly that ESPN is......similar to Sunflower Broadband!

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jakzhumans 4 years, 5 months ago

"The thing we have to do a better job of with holding ESPN’s feet to the fire is switching to the next game in local markets (in the event of a blowout),” Allen said. “ESPN makes every effort to try to take the two home markets of the teams to their game..."

Two thoughts:

First, this is a bald-faced lie. We have all been forced to suffer through the end of Big East games where one team had a lead of 8+ points with under a minute to play and was being fouled on every trip down the floor, dragging that last seconds out to fifteen minutes or more in real time. Do any research on leads in basketball games and you'll find that the overwhelming majority of games that fit that description are OVER for all intents and purposes, so there is no reason to keep showing them. Yet that's precisely what ESPN regularly does, so spare me the "ESPN makes every effort" BS.

Second, echoing the point Solomon made above, forget the score or teams involved in the early game, there isn't a basketball game in the world that local markets would prefer to watch over their local teams. With the possible exception of markets with terrible teams (which, to be honest, aren't on TV all that much anyway), if you have the technology to send local markets to their local game, do it EVERY time. Forget just KU and A&M fans this past Monday, are there any MU or KSU fans in the area who really wanted to see the end of Nova-UConn instead of A&M giving KU everything they could handle? Of course not, and to argue otherwise is inane. Why hinge the decision to cut away on whether or not the early game is a blowout? How many Nova or UConn fans are there in College Station or Lawrence that would pitch a fit? Certainly a few thousand fewer than the A&M and KU fans who are directly affected, or the UT, OU, MU, KSU fans that are infinitely more interested in a good Big 12 matchup, even if it doesn't involve their own school.

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Aligned 4 years, 5 months ago

I I can’t speak for anyone else, but personally, I find Tim Allen’s position on this problem to be more disturbing than the issue itself! Where did they find this guy?

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jaybate 4 years, 5 months ago

Aligned,

Mr. Allen, like a lot of persons in college basketball, receives a paycheck from a conference, or school, but most of the money for that paycheck actually comes from ESPN. Follow the money and you will always know who works for who, regardless of their nominal employer.

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stravinsky 4 years, 5 months ago

“ESPN makes every effort to try to take the two home markets of the teams to their game..." -- I have to agree with several of you that this is bull. Anyone remember the West Virginia-Nova game? While I suppose not a 'blowout,' they ended up losing by 7 or whatever, this game was over and WV was fouling with about 2 minutes left. Ended up cutting into the Big 12 game by a while.

I want to see my mighty Jayhawks at tipoff. Not 15 minutes later.

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Ryan2845 4 years, 5 months ago

Last night ESPN put the MU/UT game on the SD version of espn for Kansas City while the HD version still showed Louisville/ND which went to overtime. Why can't they do that every week for KU? They just proved they have the ability.

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jayhawkjoe98 4 years, 5 months ago

I would certainly like to know what constitutes a "blow out," because there have been a handful of instances when the 6:00 game was well out of hand and ESPN did not switch to the 8:00 game.

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Aligned 4 years, 5 months ago

Jaybate,

Thanks for bringing that point to light. I certainly wasn't aware of it, but anyone with an I.Q. higher than that of celery can see you're correct after reading the above article.

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Foster Coburn 4 years, 5 months ago

This whole problem could be resolved if the Big 12 would actually want to get it resolved.

Why can't the Big East game tip even five minutes earlier? My guess is that it tips at 7 to 10 minutes after the hour. Of course the talking heads wouldn't be able to hype the game, but we certainly don't get to hear them hype the Big 12 game. Then start the Big 12 game five minutes later. Having a total of ten extra minutes to settle the Big East free throw shooting contests should at least get to most of our games on time.

ESPN is clearly out of touch with reality if it thinks ESPN360 is the answer. I live in the Phoenix metro area and have only ONE choice for Internet provider (unless I want dial up). It is a small company and it will never have ESPN360. Now I do pay for ESPN Full Court every year to get the extremely low quality (picture wise) Jayhawk/Big12 Network games. They can't at least show the games on one of those channels? Remember I'm PAYING for the ability to see those games.

Tim Allen clearly has his head buried if he thinks the Big East games are always two possession games. There was a Marquette games a few weeks back that was a ten point game and it took forever to get through all the stupid free throws. And why can't ESPN show a split screen? They did that for the tip on Monday and then immediately went back to show us an exciting time out huddle followed by free throws.

The Big 12 office better wake up. They are going to pay dearly if they don't resolve this and other TV problems.

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jayhwk5288 4 years, 5 months ago

Games from a tough, physical league (Big East) are going to take longer than a finesse league (Big 12) because there’s more fouling and more stoppage time.”

whats the tool man smoking?

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jaybate 4 years, 5 months ago

"In which NU hangs 87 on KSU"

KSU escaped NU by the dermis of its molars. How does this happen? KSU seemed like a pretty good defensive team.

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Aligned 4 years, 5 months ago

To anyone who may be doubting that there is a fix to this chronic problem, think about this: If the situation could somehow be reversed, that is, if the east coast markets were continually forced to watch a Big 12 free-throw shooting contest in lieu of the first five minutes of the game they tuned in to watch, how long do you think it would take for ESPN to be forced into action? And upon being confronted by numerous, irate Big East fans, would their commissioners respond with inane comments like “it happens with all of basketball”?

The first issue is to remove Tim Allen from his position. The second is to hire someone willing to represent the Big 12.

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jakzhumans 4 years, 5 months ago

Statistical proof that Allen is talking out of his posterior:

This season, Big 12 teams have averaged 23.8 free throw attempts per game. Big East teams average 21.9.

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Glen Darge 4 years, 5 months ago

I don't believe that crap about the time involved in finishing a game on t/v It's just that espn thinks everyone wants to wants to watch the east teams. B---S---! Thats one reason I dissconnected my cable and went to watchint Big 12 games on local t/v only and listening to the rest of the games on the radio. espn and cox won't get rich off me while they expect me to take their S---!

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Steve Brown 4 years, 5 months ago

Here's the solution for our house: We DVR the game 8-11pm. and delay turning it on at tip.

Approx. 30 minutes into the game we start DVR at the beginning and fast forward right past the end of the Big East game. This avoids the frustration of when that darn game will end. Sure, like you I've missed the beginning and I"m a little behind real time, but we fast forward past all the TV timeouts and commercials and end the game about the same time with tons less frustrations and no commercials.

Given what we have it works, except we no longer listen on radio while watching, until someone figures out how to DVR the radio I can't sink it.....

so my game ends about the same time as yours with none of the frustrations.

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Christopher Hauser 4 years, 5 months ago

Sign the petition under "fans blog" entitled "Fans Unhappy With ESPN's Treatment of the Big 12." I put it up a couple of days before they posted this article. Fescoe from 610 AM sports in KC the petition. I have seen many games that should have been switched over but were not. This crap is just plain old East Coast biased in my opinion. I have been putting up with this since I was a kid and nothing has ever changed.

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KANSTUCKY 4 years, 5 months ago

minnhawk84, I show the game on Dish Network Altitude channel 410. I don't see it on ESPN Full Court. (Why did I buy this package) It is on ESPN360.com if your broadband provider subscribes. Justintv.com is your only other hope. Good luck.

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Pharm_Girl 4 years, 5 months ago

Schedule ALL televised games 2.5 hours apart, rather than 2 hours apart.

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kufankam 4 years, 5 months ago

RockchalkUnleashed-

YOU NAILED IT!!! They can do a little cut in to the 6 o'clock game (as a segment of sports center) and hype the game for about 3 minutes. Then, right as SC is ending (which is easily in their control!), go to commercial and then directly to the SMALL EAST game with the players on the floor ready to tip (at 6:00 or 6:02). Then, start the BIG12 game a few minutes later. Just go right into the game with ready for the tip. Honestly, I could care less to even have the BIG12 game hyped. I am normally MORE than ready to just see the blasted game!!

So they say they are doing everything they can, when in reality.... They just want to show their little video montage and voiceover to hype their games. It is stupid. Just show us the game!

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Aligned 4 years, 5 months ago

I think many people error in trying to identify solutions to this long-standing problem. There are many, many possible solutions. The real problem is an unwillingness of the Big 12 Conference administration staff to address the issue in a meaningful way. A good idea is only an idea if there’s no interest in getting it implemented.

The Big 12 Conference employees a large staff to handle things like this:

http://www.big12sports.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=10410&KEY=&ATCLID=1514843

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Steve Brown 4 years, 5 months ago

petitions are meaningless........

Follow the $$$$.

They have it the way they want it.

A higher audience rating for end of Big East games means higher revenues hence higher profits. You goons turning into ESPN at 8pm to see end of Big East games = they can charge more from advertisers.

Today audience ratings are done digitally from your cable box, not from Aunt Betty calling you to see what you are watching. At 8pm ratings spike.

If you want to affect change, get 20 million pals to turn off, not turn on ESPN at tip off and it will change in a week.

Tim Allen is a tool, but by design, a tool for the guy that sends him the check, ESPN not the teams fans. As fans you are not the customer but in a group you are the product and they have you doing what they want..........turning in so they capture multiple markets for one game.

Follow the $$$$.

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BCRavenJHawkfan 4 years, 5 months ago

SORRY TIMMY! Your answer just doesn't hold water. Sportscenter can air ealier, it's been done before. The truth is ESPN has every conference hostage when it comes to scheduling tip times on these games. Another reason this "policy" doesn't ring true is last nights example compared to Monday's. Last night on ESPN2 ND and Louisville reach Over Time and coverage was shifted, all of a sudden I'm watching Texas and Missouri. If these conference administrators would just own up and be truthful about how the pecking order really is we will all be better off. It's no wonder ND formed their own TV network and hatched an exclusive deal with NBC for the football program.

Now, if I were outragously rich I would put money into launching my own satellite for TV broadcasting. I would make every channel offering an ala cart deal, I don't need Home Shopping crap. So, if you want all sports stations you got it. If you want nothing more than talking heads politics idiots, you got it. And, I would make things specific to regions and time zones.

The only thing in ESPN's defense, they are not CBS!

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Mike Kendall 4 years, 5 months ago

Aligned--- I wanted to say what you said earlier. What if the Big 12 games started first instead of the Big East? Let's say the Big 12 game is lasting longer than the allotted time and spilled into the Big East contest? Ohhhhh, my god, all hell would break out!!!!! The Big East would be ranted and raving, that's for sure! Seems like ESPN has too much power and is too chicken __ to make a decision to switch over to the Big XII game!!!!

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BCRavenJHawkfan 4 years, 5 months ago

Someone please tell me what happens on this site to cause parts of postings to switch from upper case to lower case when posted? In my ealier post I purposely put some things in upper case for emphasis and it came thru in lower case.

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Christopher Hauser 4 years, 5 months ago

lighthawk-

However meaningless petitions may be, they are still more constructive than us sitting and complaining on this board.

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quigley 4 years, 5 months ago

"Games from a tough, physical league (Big East) are going to take longer than a finesse league (Big 12) because there’s more fouling and more stoppage time.”

Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait,...........WHAT???

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youowethehawks 4 years, 5 months ago

The only thing tough about the Big East is Onuaku. I hope we get a bracket full of teams from the Big 16 and have the opportunity to back-hand smack them with our "finesse."

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WilburNether 4 years, 5 months ago

The KU Athletic Department and the rest of NCAA Division I have sold their souls to television for the money. They are perfectly willing to screw the fans who attend games and create the great atmosphere if absurdly late game times bring in more TV $$$.

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slowplay 4 years, 5 months ago

There is this new technology called "radio". It broadcasts voice over the airwaves. It's pretty cool. You can even receive it in your car. I've been listening to KU games on this little box in my living room and the games are always broadcast on time. In fact, I like it so much, I don't even turn on the sound on my TV. Also, for XM subscribers the game will be on channel 143.

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JayhawkRock 4 years, 5 months ago

I realize that some games dont go the full 2 hours but every Big East game that I have watched this year has gone at least two hours and fifteen minutes. Sportscenter could afford to end the show 17 minutes early at 5:43 central time to get the first game started early. That way you have cushion for when Depaul decides to foul down ten points with a minute left.

Either way, ESPN has to get this fixed. Last night I wanted to watch the Mizzou-UT game and we missed almost the entire first half. Now, granted the Louisville-ND game went to two OTs but we wouldnt have caught the beginning of the game anyways. Trying to fit a Big East game ahead of a Big 12 game or the other way around just doesnt work. I dont even like playing on Big Monday because sometimes we have to play on the road on Saturday or that Monday and we dont get any rest or time to prepare in between games.

Listening to the radio is an alternative but its not the same as actually seeing whats going on. I think ESPN should show a split screen of the games simultaneously if say the Big East game is out of reach. That way you keep the Big East fans happy by showing the end of their game and you keep us happy by showing the beginning of our game.

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Steve Gantz 4 years, 5 months ago

As a Bears fan living in Packers country I was often frustrated with not seeing the Bears. Several times the Bears had the early game and it went late and Fox switched to the Packers game. Once the Bears were driving to the game winning TD and they still switched. If Fox can do it, surely ESPN can too.

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jaybate 4 years, 5 months ago

lighthawk,

You make excellent point explicit by noting the ratings are taken at the cable box now.

The difficulty of getting 20 million fans to wait to switch on is partly why I suggested a super conference solution.

At the same time, I do think the sudden feedback of ratings taken at the cable box make it feasible to begin organized, surgical, ratings resistance to certain asymmetries in broadcast distribution.

It might not be very difficult to organize one or two commercial break boycotts by disgruntled fans in central, mountain and pacific time zones at 8pm central time, until ESPN agrees to appropriately serve fans in the midwest, mountain and west time zones, rather than serve ESPN's short-sighted bottom line. Put another way, perhaps fans in three of the four time zones can rather suddenly and sharply raise the cost to ESPN of indulging in its bottom line at our expenses.

How to do this? Simple. Begin circulating requests on fan websites like this one for fans in midwest, mountain and pacific time zones to participate in a one or two commercial break boycott. Beautiful.

They are to tune in 5 minutes after 8pm central time, or 10 minutes after 8pm central time, until ESPN agrees to stop carrying the eastern game past 8 pm in the three western time zones.

But doesn't this punish fans on the games where the east game does not run late?

Not very much, because:

a) fans are already suffering (so its substituted suffering, not additive suffering); and

b) fans participating in the surgical boycott would be advised to check espn's own web site (or perhaps CBS's to eliminate click benefits to espn) via internet to see if the early Big Monday game is still on, without tuning into ESPN on cable first.

The algorithm is easy to communicate:

If internet indicates early game finishes on time, tune in on television and enjoy your game, else boycott ten minutes, then tune in.

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jaybate 4 years, 5 months ago

Doing the above in any significant numbers at all, especially around sweeps times, would instantly cost ESPN significant advertising money. What advertiser wants to advertise nationally in a time slot where sets are not being tuned into across three quarters of the time zones in normal numbers? And the intense self interest of the advertiser is the real beauty of a surgical boycott. The boycott would be a successful if only a small percentage of TV sets ceased to tune in for 10 minutes, because the advertisers are seeking maximum penetration, not diluted penetration. Advertisers would look at the slot and say, "Why advertise in the boycotted slot, when 10 percent fewer viewers are watching, when I could advertise on either side of that slot and get maximum viewers. The result is that even with only a small percentage of the viewers boycotting, the intrinsic dynamics of advertising will make the advertisers themselves begin to boycott the time slot the fans are boycotting surgically.

Are there counter-strategies for ESPN? Sure, if surgical boycotts were a regular thing, then ESPN would begin to impose ad packages on advertisers that forced them to take the boycotted slot along with others, or it might tack on arbitrary "fees" on top of ratings to compensate, because it is essentially a monopolist on week night college basketball product and so can do this sort of thing. But, it would incur a lot of grief from advertisers and some lost revenue along the way and for what?

ESPN would respond to the boycott of three time zones as surely as networks have responded to all statistically significant special interest groups boycotting content and timing of it in the past.

As I understand it, ESPN is in it for the money, or this would not be a problem. :-)

Now sing with me, people...

"We shall over come Sooooome daaay" :-)

Rock chalk!

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kuclay 4 years, 5 months ago

For being such a high ranking BIg XII official, its downright frightening how out of touch the tool-man is with his conference. Maybe he was on sick leave during the hirings of Bill Self, Mike Anderson, Frank Martin, and Mark Turgeon. I'm not sure any of these guys (especially Mike Anderson) even know the meaning of "finesse" basketball.

Memo to Mr. Allen: Roy Williams left KU 7 years ago and went to the ACC. If you want to see a finesse league, maybe you check you should check them out.

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kerbyd 4 years, 5 months ago

Can you imagine how much trouble the "tool man" would have with scheduling in the Western Athletic conference? The league stretches from Louisiana Tech which may be in the Eastern time zone to Hawaii which is on Hawaii-Aleutian Standard time!!!

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TtownHawk 4 years, 5 months ago

"In the event of a blowout, ESPN will switch from the Big East game to the Big 12 game in the local market of the two Big 12 teams."

This is a load of bull, there have been many times a team is up 10 or more with a minute or so left and they NEVER switch over to the KU game.

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Kusportsshould Notrequirethis 4 years, 5 months ago

ESPN. SPLIT-SCREEN!!!!

LJW. Please never again print anything Mr. Allen says. If you want made up facts or out of touch opinions let me know. I'll be happy to provide you a load of crap.

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FairgroveJayhawk 4 years, 5 months ago

BCRavenJHawkfan - I have no idea and run into the same problem... DAMN IT.

cre017 - Two Words ....... RIGHT ON!!

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FairgroveJayhawk 4 years, 5 months ago

'right on' was supposed to be capitalized as well. Only limited shouting allowed I suppose.

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justanotherfan 4 years, 5 months ago

There were only a few minutes left in the first half of last nights MU-Texas game because the Notre Dame - Louisville game (a game between two probable NIT teams) ran into double OT while two tournament teams were pushed to ESPN360. And while ESPN did eventually switch Missouri, Texas and the KC area to the MU-Texas game, those outside KC or in another Big XII state were subjected to the end of the Big East clash rather than a game of more interest to them. I am a huge basketball fan, but I would much rather watch tournament teams than NIT bound squads.

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Milhawkee 4 years, 5 months ago

One thing about having the game run over is that ESPN doesn't have to make a package hyping the Big 12 game before it starts. Or do they and no one sees it unless it's replayed on ESPN Classic? Or if it turns out to be a good game then they make a package for it. Hmm...

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tobyfoo 4 years, 5 months ago

There is a petition to stop the cut ins. I would like to watch the entire kansas game, but ESPN doesn't care. sign the petition to limit the cut ins. We can complain or we can try to do something about it. Go sign. http://www.petitiononline.com/BIG12ESP/petition.html

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NH_JHawk 4 years, 5 months ago

So let me get this straight: The "alternative" to ESPN is ESPN 360? Sounds like a monopoly to me, if you can even get ESPN 360. Pathetic.

To be sure, KUAD shares some of the blame here. They have completely alienated their own fan base that lives outside the terrestrial radio signal (free) by charging for the internet radio stream. Again, pathetic.

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Eurekahwk 4 years, 5 months ago

For 39 minutes, Big East refs let the players murder eachother. Then in the last minute, the loser starts touch fouling the the other team every time they get the ball. Sometimes, they start with two minutes left. It is much worse when the team is down by 20, but they do it anyway. If it is completely mathematically impossible that you can comeback, just stop. Let them run the clock out, and be done with it.

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labbadabba 4 years, 5 months ago

it wouldn't be so bad if I could stream the audio online. I'd even pay for it. But KU, the NCAA, the Big XII, Sweet Lew, someone in there has blacked out any internet radio broadcast of the game. I live in NY and I'd really like to catch the game on radio if its not on the tube.

Not sure why they do this. Not even the money-grubbing NFL does that.

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ku2004daniel 4 years, 5 months ago

ESPN-

how hard is it to switch the KU viewing area of espn to the KU game when it begins? regardless of a blowout

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CrodieBroyle 4 years, 5 months ago

Finesse? That's is not how i would describe the Big 12.

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zealand 4 years, 5 months ago

I live in New Zealand and the blackout of the internet radio coverage when the KU game is on ESPN is downright mean and nasty, and shows it is all about the money. Until very recently, one could still find live radio coverage on ESPN games, but no more. There is an ESPN bar code on the backs of Allen and the rest of the athletic hierarchy, who obviously don't care about the Big 12 and KU fans across the world!

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txron 4 years, 5 months ago

TAILFEATHERS ESPN BIG EAST TRYS TO PROMOTE IT SELF AS THE TOUGHEST CONFERENCE IN THE COUNTRY ! WAIT UNITLE MARCH AND SEE WHO HEADLINES ON D!

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Jack Wilson 4 years, 5 months ago

I'm sorry, I didn't read everyone's posts. But why can't they put a little box in a corner, like picture in picture, so we can see the action while the other game finishes? My problem with ESPN is that when we finally get to our game, they don't provide extensive highlights updating us on the points scored, etc. It seems easy to do.

And if they switched to our game regionally, they could do the box thing on the prior game so those that want to, could see that. Not hard.

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jaybate 4 years, 5 months ago

Petitions miss the point.

Losing money from losing eyeballs is what motivates ESPN.

Boycotts of advertising slots is a currency ESPN respects.

If ESPN measures a significant decline in TV sets for the ten minutes after it fails to shift to a midwestern game, then ESPN will announce a "fan sensitive" policy to shift to games at tip off in the midwest, mountain and pacific time zones.

Then while we are getting to see our games from whistle to whistle, key schools in the Atlantic Ten, Big Twelve, and Pac Ten need to form the Big 30 spanning 4 time zones and schedule across time zones through out the season.

Oh, I said that once already today. :-)

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kmatlage 4 years, 5 months ago

lighthawk and jaybate:

"Today audience ratings are done digitally from your cable box, not from Aunt Betty calling you to see what you are watching. At 8pm ratings spike.

If you want to affect change, get 20 million pals to turn off, not turn on ESPN at tip off and it will change in a week."

This is partly true. Ratings are mostly collected digitally for overnight ratings, but not at everyone's cable box. Nielson ratings are only collected by roughly 20,000 Nielson boxes nationally for overnight ratings (you need a special Nielson box in addition to your cable box). Us all individually turning off our TVs has absolutely no effect on ratings unless some of the people participating happen to be Nielson viewers. It is all based on statistical sampling. (There are still the old sweeps diaries obviously for a couple sweeps periods throughout the year, but these matter a lot more to local markets/programs than to national advertising)

In addition, most advertising is sold almost exclusively based on a show's 18-49 demo ratings. While half-hour and sometimes quarter-hour ratings are available, that is not really what's used to sell ad time to advertisers. Advertisers generally buy time based on the average demo numbers for an entire program (based on past results), not the ratings of individual slots. While a few Big 12 viewers not tuning in at 8 would probably lower the ratings a little bit assuming some of them were Nielson viewers, it wouldn't be enough to significantly affect the overall ratings of a 2-hour program that still hasn't lost any of its Big East viewers.

A slightly more effective (though still not great) strategy would be to boycott the actual products that are advertised and try to get some media attention. They probably wouldn't notice that small a number of people not buying their products, but if you get enough exposure that they /know/ the reason some people aren't buying their products is because of this issue, then they might be willing to complain to ESPN. See the 'Chuck' TV show Subway campaign from last year for a similar type of situation, but in reverse (buying lots of subs so that Subway would be a little bit more interested in buying ad time for the next season). Anyway, I'm not sure you could really get enough exposure for this to matter and I doubt it is worth the effort.

Sorry to go off on a tangent, but this is something that I follow a decent amount, so I figured I should set a couple things straight before you guys wasted your time and energy trying to organize something. If you're interested in more information, http://tvbythenumbers.com/ is a pretty decent resource.

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Mark Wooden 4 years, 5 months ago

Why is this an issue now? It happens every week since Big Monday started.

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Rodney Stice 4 years, 5 months ago

I read thru many articles today about the lack of airtime for the start of games.

Cox cable here in the valley has interactive commercials with our cable box. When a certain commercial is aired, you can push one of three buttons to get prompts and info mailed to your home (the address to where the bill is received). How come ESPN could not have a comparible computer program installed to give the veiwer a choice to continue to watch the current game or switch to the new game? CBS could also benifit from this technology, remember the KU v. Mizzou game last year.

I say give the choice to the individual veiwer and see how the rating fare.

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SC0VILLE 4 years, 5 months ago

Thanks kmatlage,

Your viewing habits do not matter unless you are one of the Nielsen households. Their sample size not big enough to really calculate true ratings, so the system is antiquated and inaccurate. As long as advertisers rely on this system, there's not a whole lot we can do.

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DocBean 4 years, 5 months ago

We don't need to see the players shaking hands after their game is over! That is NOT UNAVOIDABLE, it's UNACCEPTABLE.

I want to see the #1 team in the country, playing in the best basketball conference in the country. Get it right ESPN.

And officials need to stop calling fouls when one team is up by 7 with 2 seconds left on the clock. I couldn't be more upset when they called one with .9 seconds left. - However, that's the idiot Villinova players' faults for fouling when the game is over.

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Tyler Bruce 4 years, 5 months ago

What is this talk about it being a blowout? Why does it have to be a blowout? NEWSFLASH: in Big XII country we dont care about the Big East! Especially here in KS where KU is king! I agree that it was the Nova player's fault for fouling that guy with .9 seconds but how stupid do the refs have to be there to call it? It's not like the game wasn't over! Which leads me to my next point.. THE GAME WAS OVER!! Who cares about the last second of the game if the outcome CAN'T change? It's the same thing as a blowout to me! Especially when the free throws are going to take 3 minutes by the time they get everybody down there and lined up, substitutions, delay between shots.... it's RIDICULOUS!!

And my last point (and most likely most fair).. Instead of watching the losing team discussing strategy during one of the endless timeouts they have, how about ESPN switch to the other game so we can watch it for a minute?? March Madness does it ALL the time! It doesn't take brain surgery to figure it out! It's just toggling between games!! Its ludacris that we "get" to watch the tip and in no way, shape, or form can we see another second of it until the 13:52 mark? Get over the east coast bias and into the real world! Again.. WE DONT CARE ABOUT THE OVERRATED BIG EAST!! I guarantee if the problem were reversed it would have happened one time only!

And this article made stupid points all together.. ESPN can't change their scheduling? They do it every monday during football season! And ESPN360 isn't available everywhere, stupid!!

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TreHawks 4 years, 5 months ago

Hey Eric S,

I met your father today at our office in downtown Los Angeles. He saw my Jayhawks banner and introduced himself.

Very nice man.

I enjoy your articles and will certainly pay closer attention to them now!

TreHawk

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paulhawk 4 years, 5 months ago

i get so freaken tired of watching the end of big east games. please make it stop!

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SC0VILLE 4 years, 5 months ago

I was thinking about the whole ratings thing today while watching the CU game on ESPN360. While our tv viewing habits won't make any difference if we're not a Neilsen household, maybe our viewing of espn360 could make a difference.

I'm not saying that ESPN does take that into account, but they could and should. Not only can they track numbers of viewers online, but they can also track where those viewers are watching from. If they're smart, they are doing that.

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Eric Sorrentino 4 years, 5 months ago

Hey TreHawks, thanks for the comment. My dad told me about that. That's awesome. Small world, right? If you're ever back in Lawrence for a game or anything, let me know. Again, thanks for posting!

-Eric

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