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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 5:26 pm 
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Having grwon up in football-crazy SW Pennsylvania, I can firmly assert that interest there (and coverage in the Pittsburgh media) ranks as follows:
1) Pitt
VERY CLOSELY FOLLOWED BY 1a) Penn State and 1b) WVU (order varies, depending upon who is having the better year).
Morgantown, WV is a short drive from Pittsburgh and recruits heavily in SW Pa.

Other schools getting significant media attention -
1) Notre Dame
2) Schools that have a local connection (i.e. star player from the SW Pa area).


I have no doubt that the above is true. But then PA isn't simply SW Pennsylvania. With the biggest DMAs being Philly by a landslide followed by Pitt (at #22 nationally) and then Harrisburg-Lancaster-York in the 40s and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton area in the 50s. If memory serves me correct, you have to go all the way to the high 90s before you get to Johnstown-Altoona.

Cheers,
Neil



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 9:27 am 
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Neil -

Not sure what a DMA is...
You are correct that most of PA is dominated by PSU. Interesting that you mentioned Johnstown-Altoona.
Johnstown has a Pitt branch campus, and seems to be the eastern edge of the Pitt sphere of influence. Altoona has a PSU branch campus and is clearly Penn State country. Those towns had major contributions to Paterno's undefeated 68-69 teams...
I think Mike Reid was from Altoona and Steve Smear was from Johnstown. (they formed the pnemonic defensive tackle combination of "Reid and Smear" - I always loved that).
Jack Ham was from somewhere in the Johnstown area.

PSU recruits heavily from New York State. I'm not sure where in PA that Syracuse and Ohio State get a lot of publicity, but I can believe Syracuse might up in NE PA near Scranton-Wilkes Barre, and OSU near the Ohio line, especially towarrd Erie.

I think when Penn State joined the Big Ten, it was thought that they would become rivals with Ohio State (their nearest conf. opponent), but I don't think it's taken off that much (certainly nowhere near the extent of the OSU-Michigan rivalry). Maybe that's just a matter of happenstance that OSU and Michigan seem to have "up years" coinciding more with each other, and PSU hasn't exactly dominated in FB since joining the Big Eleven, save an awesome season in 1994 (?) and a very good one in 2005.

Philly is something like twice the population of Pittsburgh (comparing greater metropitan areas), although I doubt that scholastic athletics is so dominated by football in Philly. I would think a blue chip prospect from Eastern Pa would lean strongly toward PSU. There was a time when Temple might have attracted some attention before their program became a joke. Rutgers has gone in the opposite direction and now may be a recruiting force there, along with the ACC schools and ND being able to command some attention. Pitt is no factor there, in fact I think Pitt makes NO EFFORT to recruit in Eastern Pa, they feel their energy is better spent in Florida.

Cheers.


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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2007 7:46 am 
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Not sure what a DMA is...


DMA is 'direct market advertisizing'.

http://www.nielsenmedia.com/nc/portal/site/Public/menuitem.d7deb7344c5a8ffe818e6c1047a062a0/?vgnextoid=9f7e1ba363df4010VgnVCM100000880a260aRCRD

DMA maps provide a complete geographical break down of Nielsen Media Research's 210 Designated Market Areas. A DMA consists of those counties whose largest share of viewing is to stations located in that same market area. Non-overlapping DMAs cover the entire continental United States, Hawaii and parts of Alaska. DMAs are used to identify specific media markets for those interested in buying and selling television, advertising and programming. This CD contains many different file formats of the DMA map. Those who need to alter specific regions of the U.S. will find the Quark Formats of the 1-color, 2-color and 3-color map useful. If you require only a graphic of the U.S. map, there are a variety of 1-color formats available.



Essentially DMA measure of market size. NYC is #1, LA, #2, Chicago #3, etc.

The major media centers in the NE really do not follow college sports in general compared to other regions of the country.


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Pitt is no factor there, in fact I think Pitt makes NO EFFORT to recruit in Eastern Pa, they feel their energy is better spent in Florida.


Wannstedt is trying to change that. Just take a look at how many recruits were brought in this past year from central and eastern PA. Pitt is also deemphasizing Florida (still going there but not as many people) and using those resources on the DC/Maryland/Northern Virginia instead..



Last edited by panthersc97 on Wed May 16, 2007 7:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2007 8:34 am 
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Neil, the basic premise of your theory seems to be that the ultimate target of the ACC expansion was Notre Dame & that the conference was willing to go beyond 12 members to get them. Is this supposition/speculation on your part or do you have any actual knowledge to support this? Publicly available or personal contacts, either is okay.


Not quite. The pro-expansion faction in the ACC wanted to -

1) make the ACC a true all-sports conference with a reputation in football to at least challenge the SEC and the Big 10

2) get to a football championship game by expanding to at least 12 teams

3) secure additional markets for the league

So, Miami was the obvious choice for #10.

What drove the discussion fors #s 11 and 12?

In a 'dream' scenario, ND and Penn State would be the ideal candidates for those two slots. But what were the likelihood of either going to what was essentially an SEC-lite conference?

When 2 members of the pro-expansion faction (GT President Clough and Clemson President Barker) have shown some support for the G5 plan (the power conferences back-up plan of splitting away from the NCAAs and forming 5 super-conferences with 16 teams each - if the NCAA should start going in directions the super-conferences deem against their best interests) the thoughts turn to what will the college football landscape look like 5-10-15 years down the road?

So you choose two teams you know will secure Miami, increase your market size, and give the conference a chance (not saying anyone thought it would be a certainty, but at least give the ACC a chance) of wooing ND and Penn State 5-10 years down the road.



But the migration patterns are North to South and Midwest to West Coast or East Coast - not South to North. So the pro-sports mentality of the Northeast and the major industrial cities of the Midwest are not being impacted by the migration patterns you site.

The futility of some of the pro-franchises in the midwest however, is leading to an increase in the popularity of college sports in that region.




Actually the first half of the century was dominated by professional baseball - which is why it became America's pasttime. All other sports, whether pro or college, simply were insignificant.

One of the first rules of statistics is don't bother with insignificance. ;)




True, but for the most part, pro-sports continues to lag behind in the south in comparison with college sports (particularly college football).

Which has the greater following - the Vols or the Titans? the Dawgs or the Falcons? the Tigers or the Saints?

Now name a college football team in the NYC area that has greater fan appeal than the Giants or the Jets? in the Washington DC area than the Redskins? the Boston/Hartford/Providence area than the Patriots? the Baltimore area than the Ravens?

Now can college sports have an impact on the northeast to the point it can at least challenge pro-sports, particularly football? Sure, it has begun to do so in the Midwest. But what is basically different about the Midwest college institutions versus the northeast institutions? In the Midwest, the state universities are the principle and peak institutions of those states.

This is not the case in the northeast, where the private schools are more prominent than the public state universities - thanks in large part due to the Ivy League.

Rutgers and Connecticut have a chance to overcome that hurdle, but it will be easier, imho, for UConn to accomplish this than Rutgers because at least the name of the state is prominently on display with the Huskies whereas it is not with the Scarlet Knights.

Still, neither the state of New Jersey nor the state of Connecticut are major states in the northeast - both needing to feed off the major metropolitan areas of states surrounding them rather than those located within their own borders.



But where are the northeast people migrating to? They are heading to cities like Charlotte, Atlanta, Tampa, and Miami. So naturally pro franchises have sprung up in these areas.

Yet even with the transplanted northeasterners these major metropolitan areas of the south are experiencing difficulty supporting pro-franchises in their cities other than football.



Nothing is immutable, but even changes in trends need to be analyzed for why certain trends are occuring in some instances but not others.



While they may have the potential to do so, neither team has accomplished it yet. It would be like saying that California provides a more solid fan base UCLA than Michigan does for the Wolverines. Well that may be true, but the Bruins have yet to come close to getting the fan support that the Wolverines do.

Since neither Rutgers nor UConn has yet to definitely surpass either Miami or BC in terms of local fan support it is difficult to assert that they will - which is what you are presupposing in this thread.

Is it Rutgers reputation for losing that is holding them back? If it is, how much 'winning' do they need to accomplish to get them to exceed Miami? Is it UConn's relative newness to 1-A that is holding them back in relationship to BC? They drew even with them this year, but it was a year in which UConn also lost fan interest. And was BC's drop the result of New Englanders not supporting the Eagles? Not caring much for the new rivalries with southern teams? More the result of ACC team fans not traveling to their games in Boston because they were farther away than the visiting fans from the northeastern teams BC used to play? A combination of all three?


Quote:
I think that the ACC miscalculated. It wouldn't surprise me at all if Miami made the move to the ACC because they were sick & tired of catering to their football program. When they were independent & when they were in the Big East, they had to because dollars followed their program only if it was successful. In contrast, ACC dollars are guaranteed. It wouldn't surpise me at all to see Miami crack down on their program & in the wake of that, to see the program decline. My guess is that in 20 years, we'll all look back at a record of mediocrity at Miami with no NCs & a string of bowl losses the same way we now look at the past 20 years of Notre Dame football. In contrast, I believe that UConn will remain a power house in basketball & Rutgers will continue to grow into the same in football.

Of course, I may be wrong. ;)


As may I. ;) None of us are perfect.

Cheers,
Neil


Neil, I'll respond in detail when I have more time, but there are a couple of glaring inaccuracies in your post.

1. College football was not irrelevant in the first half of the 20th century. Yale was playing before 70,000 in the Yale Bowl. Harvard, Penn, & Princeton were all playing before crowds of about 50,000 plus or minus on campus. Army, NYU, & Fordham were regularly selling out Yankee Stadium & the Polo Grounds in New York. Other college football games were being played in Ebbetts' Field. Notre Dame developed its "subway alumni" football following in New York by regularly playing in The City before sell out crowds in Yankee Stadium & to a lesser extent the Polo grounds. Even by today's standards the attendance at these games was big time. This is just off the top of my head. Maybe Pitt fans can chime in because they were big time back then & I imagine they had big crowds as well. I'm sure that there were others as well. Don't forget that back then the World Series was over by the first week in October. The NFL was insignificant, so college football dominated the sporst pages in October & November.

2. The Rutgers name is not an impediment to developing a fan following in New Jersey. You don't need to have the sate name in the university name to be recognizable. If you did, Purdue wouldn't have a bigger football following in Indiana than the sate university. Same for the ability of Auburn in Alabama & Clemson in South Carolina to compete with the state university. Rutgers doesn't even have competition from a team with "New Jersey" in its university title the way those 3 do. The residents of New Jersey have no problem knowing who their state university is.

The idea of New Jersey being nothing but an apendage to New York & Philly is beyond my comprehension. Greater New York is a megalopolis with varying commuter patterns, employment centers, population hubs, etc. New Jersey has enormous in-state employment & numerous corporate headquarters. Newark is a large city in its own right that is going through a renaissance. there are plenty of people who live & workd exclusively in New Jersey. The state has its own newspapers & media outlets. The people of New Jersey know where they live & where their loyalties lie. IMO, they have significantly more potential than UConn. Regardless of New York, it's not like there's any competition form a NYC university for those who do commute to NYC.

3. UConn already has an established fan base for men's & women's basketball, both of which give them an enormous state-wide presence. In their first year as a Big East member in football, they were selling out a 40,000 seat stadium. BC cannot compare with UConn in basketball attendance. Any difference in football attendance is negligible despite BC's tradition. UConn has infiinitely more growth potential than BC. I live in CT & am a BC parent. I've attended games at both universities.


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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2007 2:36 pm 
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Here I am defending some ACC decisions, quiet ironic really.

Contrary to posts here, FSU & Miami, I repeat, are not falling apart. Decline? From what? The very top?

FSU & Miami won their bowl games last season; granted, they were not the very top. Who beat UCLA who had beaten USC who had beaten Notre Dame......get the picture?

FSU had a top recruiting class (again) with a new offensive coordinator. Miami has a new fb coach. Miami recruited well by all reports. The available recruits in middle & south Florida have not dried up. No reports on Donna Shalala cutting back....... As Clemson spends, the others will try to be in the ballpark.

Tobacco Road is 1/3 the ACC now, not 1/2. If the former was still the case (or inbetween at the time), there would have been no expansion. Sure remnants still exist with Duke & UNC bb officiating & Greensboro viewed as a world capital, but that is getting moderated as well. South Carolina left the ACC when they had no or unassertive allies to fix it decades ago.

On expansion, Wake & NC State broke with Duke & UNC. The ACC Commisioner is a UNC guy who pushed expansion.

The east is shared by the Big East and the ACC? Oh please, exactly what conference is the east's most prominent? Penn State -- Big Ten & none of this nonsense about cow pastures in central PA.

The Big East was vulnerable to an ACC raid. Think WVU would not have turned down an ACC invitation?

The Big East is safe for now cause their BCS neighbors got done picking. If there indeed ever becomes 5 "16" mega conferences the Big East will get absorbed...maybe a couple or three left out.

In the football world, DePaul, Providence, St. Johns, etc. shall not be in the picture. That is not demeaning them, it is the reality of non'"all sports" being in the minority (as to fb interests) as like kinds may further bond.

Of course Louisville, Rutgers, and West Virginia had fine seasons in fb and the BE has been able to offer good BCS representatives after the initial year beyond the Miami departure. They are good schools along with the rest. There is also nothing particular superior to those schools as compared to the elite in other BCS conferences. 8 is still less than 10 which less than 11 which is less than 12. 16 in bb does not fix that.


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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2007 12:06 pm 
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Interesting post, SEC03. :) Just a couple of comments.


Quote:
The east is shared by the Big East and the ACC? Oh please, exactly what conference is the east's most prominent? Penn State -- Big Ten & none of this nonsense about cow pastures in central PA.


Penn State is the East's most prominent football school - & is completely irrelevant in basketball. It is one of the best examples that football success can't buy success in both sports. Its cow pasture location is precisely the reason why it is not a factor in basketball. People can drive there for Saturday afternoon football, but they can't go to a basketball game after work on a week night. So, they are a one trick pony. That pony has the most important trick - football - but they are limited to that & it's why the Big East was not interested in them in the '80s when they were not a football conference.

The cow pasture is an interesting issue. ESPN is moving increasingly in the direction of week night football. It is rapidly becoming the Big East's bread & butter. Week night football presents the same issues as week night basketball: you have to be able to attend games after work & get home in time to get up for work the next day. Even Saturday night football is a problem because you can't drive 4-6 hours to get home to Philly after a game & must stay overnight. Schools must be loscated in employment/residential areas to make this feasible - as all current Big East members are. It's probably the biggest thing the UCF has going for it as a potential 9th Big East football member.


Quote:
The Big East was vulnerable to an ACC raid. Think WVU would not have turned down an ACC invitation?


Of course you're right on this point. The question is whether in retrospect those who chose to leave have benefitted as much as they thought they woule & whether those left behind are as bad off as predicted.

A big motivator for any of the schools to leave was the fear that the Big East would lose its BCS bid. It didn't. That changes the whole conversation.

West Virginia would certainly have left. They have been an SEC wannabe for a long, long time with the ACC as a second best choice for them. However, if the Big East splits in 2010 & adds a 9th member while programs at Rutgers, USF & others continue to thrive & flourish, the point may well come down the road where they be much happier where they are.


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The Big East is safe for now cause their BCS neighbors got done picking. If there indeed ever becomes 5 "16" mega conferences the Big East will get absorbed...maybe a couple or three left out.


No one will be left out. The power conferences are being careful to be more inclusive, not less. IMO, the 5-megaconference idea is one that people will forget was ever broached if asked 10 years from now. The train is moving much faster down the track in the direction of a playoff with the SEC leading the charge. A playoff will not lead to bigger conferences. If anything we may see the breakup of 12-team conferences as members realize that it reduces their chances to get to a BCS game.


Quote:
Of course Louisville, Rutgers, and West Virginia had fine seasons in fb and the BE has been able to offer good BCS representatives after the initial year beyond the Miami departure. They are good schools along with the rest. There is also nothing particular superior to those schools as compared to the elite in other BCS conferences. 8 is still less than 10 which less than 11 which is less than 12. 16 in bb does not fix that.


My guess is that the 16-team Big East will become a thing of the past within the next 5 years - either in 2010 or at the end of the current TV deal. However, the idea that 8 is worse than 10 or 12 is a mistake in my opinion. An $18.4 million BCS payout is $2.3 million for a member of an 8-team conference, but only $1.5 million for a member of a 12-team conference. Chances of getting to a BCS game are reduced by 50% when a conference goes from 8 to 12. There are obvious scheduling reasons for the Big East to go from 8 to 9, but I don't see any incentive for them to go to 10 or 12. Every additional member becomes another mouth to feed unless they can enhance revenues. This is the very reason why the Pac Ten has steadfastly refused to move from 10 to 12.

There are further problems with a 12-team conference in loss of rivalries & scheduling issues that prevent all members from playing each other. If 16 is a bad idea, why would 12 be a good idea? It brings many of the same problems. Again, the Pac Ten example. Every member of their conference plays every other member in football & plays everyone else home & home in basketball. Ten is about as big as you can get & still do that.

Cheers


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 4:57 pm 
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Neil, I'll respond in detail when I have more time, but there are a couple of glaring inaccuracies in your post.

1. College football was not irrelevant in the first half of the 20th century. Yale was playing before 70,000 in the Yale Bowl. Harvard, Penn, & Princeton were all playing before crowds of about 50,000 plus or minus on campus. Army, NYU, & Fordham were regularly selling out Yankee Stadium & the Polo Grounds in New York. Other college football games were being played in Ebbetts' Field. Notre Dame developed its "subway alumni" football following in New York by regularly playing in The City before sell out crowds in Yankee Stadium & to a lesser extent the Polo grounds. Even by today's standards the attendance at these games was big time. This is just off the top of my head. Maybe Pitt fans can chime in because they were big time back then & I imagine they had big crowds as well. I'm sure that there were others as well. Don't forget that back then the World Series was over by the first week in October. The NFL was insignificant, so college football dominated the sporst pages in October & November.


I said it with a "smiley", so it was basically half in jest. But the above by you is also an overexaggeration in the reverse. The Yale Bowl has only achieved full capacity (or beyond) on 20 occasions in its history for Yale football. Two of those occasions were in the 1980s (the 100th game between Yale and Harvard being one of those two). The other 18 took place between 1914 and 1931 - which means basically, on average, Yale football drew those type of crowds once a year - usually for Harvard or Army.

Princeton played in Palmer Stadium in those days with a seating capacity of about 45K, while Harvard played in Harvard stadium with a capacity of 37K. So no, these Ivy league schools did not routinely play in front of crowds of 50K, except perhaps when they played each other or Army or Navy. But you know, and I know, when they played the likes of Maine, Holy Cross, Dartmouth, Tufts, Brown, etc. the stadiums were not reaching full capacity for those games particularly when the teams were not doing well.

And these were amongst the biggest stadiums in the northeast at the time with virtually all of Yale, Harvard, and Princeton's games being played at home except against each other and Army and Navy when they would alternate home and away.

But I am willing to concede that college football was not 'insignificant' (since as I said, it was written half-in-jest anyway), but I maintain it had nowhere near the significance you want to give it either.




Quote:
2. The Rutgers name is not an impediment to developing a fan following in New Jersey. You don't need to have the sate name in the university name to be recognizable. If you did, Purdue wouldn't have a bigger football following in Indiana than the sate university. Same for the ability of Auburn in Alabama & Clemson in South Carolina to compete with the state university. Rutgers doesn't even have competition from a team with "New Jersey" in its university title the way those 3 do. The residents of New Jersey have no problem knowing who their state university is.


First, I said it will be tougher for them to do than UConn, I never said it couldn't be done.

But again, I think you have tried to make an analogy (of where you see that it has been done) where there is no real analogy. Purdue's situation is unique in that Indiana did not have an NFL team and the premiere university of the state, Indiana, has rarely been good. This allowed for the Boilermakers to come in and stake that claim prior to the Colts and prior to the Hoosiers ever developing a contender (assuming that someday they might).

Auburn's following resulted specifically from its rivalry with Alabama, which has been an extremely competitive rivalry from the get-go with Auburn actually leading the series until the Bryant era.

As for Clemson, you do realize that Clemson draws almost half of its fans from 'southern North Carolina' and is often ridiculed by many residents of South Carolina as being an out-of-state rivalry with the Gamethingys? Of course, I'm sure that is only Gamethingy fans that say that, but since the Gamethingys are the favorite college team of that state (I seem to recall something like 75% or higher of the college football fans of the state preferring the Gamethingys over the Tigers when SI did their state by state poll a few years back), maybe it was just Gamethingys fans that say that. ;)

Rutgers situation doesn't really parallel any of the above.

Princeton was New Jersey's team for the first half of the century with Rutgers being their main whipping boy right up until 1967 with a record of 45-9 against the Scarlet Knights.

Then the Giants, and eventually the Jets moved in to fill the void while Rutgers continued on with their losing ways.

Meanwhile, many residents of New Jersey don't see themselves as Jerseyites. This is not to say that everyone feels that way, but many simply don't have any state loyalty. So the only way Rutgers will win their hearts is by 'winning', not by being the state school.

However, for those that do have state loyalty, the fact that Rutgers does not have New Jersey prominently in their name leads to proposed state legislation that tries to ensure that it will (proposed legislation which will likely be voted down simply because not enough people in New Jersey care - including Rutgers fans).

All of the above are hurdles and circumstances which are different from the supposedly analagous situations you cite.


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The idea of New Jersey being nothing but an apendage to New York & Philly is beyond my comprehension. Greater New York is a megalopolis with varying commuter patterns, employment centers, population hubs, etc. New Jersey has enormous in-state employment & numerous corporate headquarters. Newark is a large city in its own right that is going through a renaissance. there are plenty of people who live & workd exclusively in New Jersey. The state has its own newspapers & media outlets. The people of New Jersey know where they live & where their loyalties lie.


This, to me, is beyond my comprehension. I think it best we agree to disagree on this point before either of us says something that is likely to be considered bannable. ;)



Quote:
Regardless of New York, it's not like there's any competition form a NYC university for those who do commute to NYC.


And this goes on the assumption that New Yorkers care about any college university. If Rutgers continues to win, they will eventually find many from NYC supporting them. But once they start to lose, they will abandon them. It is the fickle nature of New York City residents for anything not considered 'their own' - Yankees, Giants, etc.

Syracuse, which is a 4 hour drive from NYC, when winning, captured enough of the NYC residents fancy to make it a team that TV wanted with ratings consistently in the 3 range (nationally) and above. Once the Orange started to lose, they lost them. The same thing will occur with the Scarlet Knights, even though they are closer.


Quote:
3. UConn already has an established fan base for men's & women's basketball, both of which give them an enormous state-wide presence. In their first year as a Big East member in football, they were selling out a 40,000 seat stadium. BC cannot compare with UConn in basketball attendance. Any difference in football attendance is negligible despite BC's tradition. UConn has infiinitely more growth potential than BC. I live in CT & am a BC parent. I've attended games at both universities.


Again, as Philly residents like to say, 'potential' means you ain't done it yet.

But of the two, Rutgers and UConn, I'd lay my money on the Huskies having the best chance of reaching that potential, mainly because they have shown that they can - with men's and women's basketball. Football is a slightly different animal though, so all we can do is wait and see.

Here's hoping both reach their potential but not at the expense of my Orange.

Cheers,
Neil


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 5:17 pm 
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Essentially DMA measure of market size. NYC is #1, LA, #2, Chicago #3, etc.

The major media centers in the NE really do not follow college sports in general compared to other regions of the country.


Agreed. But I can't help but wonder if the reasons for this are that the majority of the colleges these major media centers in the NE would follow are spread out in three different conferences (with one playing football as an independent) and therefore do not play each other enough to generate the interest.

It's a shame that there wasn't a man who combined JoePa's vision and Dave Gavitt's people skills around in the early 80s to get it done.

Ah, what might have been.

Cheers,
Neil


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 6:09 pm 
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Contrary to posts here, FSU & Miami, I repeat, are not falling apart. Decline? From what? The very top?


Someone begs to differe with you. ;)

Read down in the article to the section on "5 programs in decline."

www.sportsline.com/collegefootball/story/10187491


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 9:20 am 
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Interesting post, SEC03. :) Just a couple of comments.


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The east is shared by the Big East and the ACC? Oh please, exactly what conference is the east's most prominent? Penn State -- Big Ten & none of this nonsense about cow pastures in central PA.


Penn State is the East's most prominent football school - & is completely irrelevant in basketball. It is one of the best examples that football success can't buy success in both sports. Its cow pasture location is precisely the reason why it is not a factor in basketball. People can drive there for Saturday afternoon football, but they can't go to a basketball game after work on a week night. So, they are a one trick pony. That pony has the most important trick - football - but they are limited to that & it's why the Big East was not interested in them in the '80s when they were not a football conference.


I understand, and mostly agree with the point you are making, but they are mostly irrelevant in basketball because they can't 'win'. While their location may hurt their recruiting efforts, it's not as though Morgantown or Blacksburg are major metro areas either- and both of those programs seem to be doing alright in terms of winning.

If Penn State ever gets a coach like Beilein or Greenburg, I think the support the Nits would get for a 'winning team' (defined as a team likely to compete for the NCAAs) might surprise you. In years the team has been competitive for the NIT their attendance has been good enough to match the Eers and surpass the Hokies.


Quote:
The cow pasture is an interesting issue. ESPN is moving increasingly in the direction of week night football. It is rapidly becoming the Big East's bread & butter. Week night football presents the same issues as week night basketball: you have to be able to attend games after work & get home in time to get up for work the next day. Even Saturday night football is a problem because you can't drive 4-6 hours to get home to Philly after a game & must stay overnight. Schools must be loscated in employment/residential areas to make this feasible - as all current Big East members are. It's probably the biggest thing the UCF has going for it as a potential 9th Big East football member.


While the trend is toward week night football, keep in mind the trend is being made mostly by non-BCS conferences and the two BCS conferences supplying such match-ups are the ACC and the Big East. The SEC and the Big 10 rarely have these match-ups because they command the Saturday time slots.

UCF would likely be a disastrous choice for #9 at this point in time, but that is a different thread. ;)


Quote:
My guess is that the 16-team Big East will become a thing of the past within the next 5 years - either in 2010 or at the end of the current TV deal. However, the idea that 8 is worse than 10 or 12 is a mistake in my opinion. An $18.4 million BCS payout is $2.3 million for a member of an 8-team conference, but only $1.5 million for a member of a 12-team conference. Chances of getting to a BCS game are reduced by 50% when a conference goes from 8 to 12.


I've seen this statistic quoted before by other posters and I always shake my head with amusement when I see it. In an 8-team conference with no divisions and no championship game (and, of course, an auto-BCS bid), a team has a 1 in 8 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 7 teams in their conference.

In a 12-team conference with two divisions and a championship game, a team has a 1 in 6 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 5 teams in their division and the champion of the other conference.

Statistically speaking, a team has a better chance of getting to a BCS Bowl game in a 12-team conference with divisions and a championship game than they do in a 8-team conference.

Cheers,
Neil


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 9:44 am 
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Princeton played in Palmer Stadium in those days with a seating capacity of about 45K, while Harvard played in Harvard stadium with a capacity of 37K.


Neil, I'll concede the fact that I may have overstated the point. You make a lot of good points & have good information. Thanks.

Let me just correct your info about Ivy League Stadiums if I may. When Ivy League football was in its hay day, Harvard's stadium had a capacity of 57,000 - not 37,000. Penn's had a capacity of 52,000. Yes, Palmer Field was 45,000 & change. I was referring to the range of 45- 57 when I said 50 +/-. Just as the Palaestra is used by other schools today, Penn's stadium was used at times by Penn State as well. Before the automobile was in common use, very few people were travelling to Happy Valley for a football game, which was a major excursion by train. So, PSU brought the games to the people - which was Philly. You're also ignoring the prominence of college football in New York City in those days. NYU & Fordham played their games in Yankee Stadium & the Polo Grounds because they needed the capacity. I'm not saying that they consistently sold out, but they played before very large crowds. Just as PSU brought their games to Philly, Army & Notre Dame also were frequent guests at Yankee Stadium & the Polo Grounds. I'm basing a lot of my comments about stories my father used to tell me about attending games at these stadiums as well as at Ebbetts Fielsd in Brooklyn where the Dodgers played when he went to college.

Remember that the point of this whole thing was to address the question of whether New York could ever be a college football town or whether it is so wedded to pro sports that it could never have any interest in college football. My point in bringing up the pre-1950s era is that New York was in fact a hot bed of interest in college football for half a century. Even the Army-Navy game was played mostly in New York during the teens, '20s, & into the early '30s before they settled on Philadelphia as a more or less permanent home. They wouldn't have done that & created the longer trip for Navy that if there wasn't interest in college football in New York - more interest than Philly or anywhere else that made sense for the 2 academies.


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Rutgers situation doesn't really parallel any of the above.


Your points are all well taken. I live in Connecticut & we have a lot of families here who send their kids to Clemson & the College of Charleston, so I'm well aware that Clemson is not regarded as the state standard bearer in the way that USC is. I really wasn't trying to draw any kind of direct analogy between Rutgers & the other three. I'm just saying that you don't have to have the state's name in your university's name to build a successful program with an in-state following & I used those schools as examples. While the nuances of each situation are different, the biggest thing that Rutgers has going for it is that it has no competition from any other in-state college - public or private. Purdue, Auburn, & Clemson have created successful programs with enough of an in-state program despite the fact that someone else is clearly the state standard bearer. If they can do it, I see no reason why Rutgers can't. They just have never tried with a serious effort the way they are now.


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Princeton was New Jersey's team for the first half of the century with Rutgers being their main whipping boy right up until 1967 with a record of 45-9 against the Scarlet Knights.


True & it was even considered as a candidate for state university status. For most of its history, its name was in fact the College of New Jersey so there was a lot of affinity for Princeton within the state for a long time & for many people it was New Jersey's premier school with the local priide that went along with that - regardless of whether it was state funded.


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Then the Giants, and eventually the Jets moved in to fill the void while Rutgers continued on with their losing ways.


It wasn't just a matter of losing ways. Rutgers didn't even consistently play Div. I football until after WW II.


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Meanwhile, many residents of New Jersey don't see themselves as Jerseyites. This is not to say that everyone feels that way, but many simply don't have any state loyalty. So the only way Rutgers will win their hearts is by 'winning', not by being the state school.


In today's mobile society, New Jersey isn't unique in this regard. This is a reality in every state. The real question is whether there are college football fans in the state who want to go to a football game on a Saturday afternoon for fun & entertainment. If you can't go back home to the alma mater, can you adopt the local school while still maintaining loyalties to your alma mater from a distance? Not to mention the fact that many Rutgers' alums who no longer live in-state are close by in New York, Connecticut, or Pennsylvania & can easily get back for a game.

Here in Connecticut, there are certainly plenty of fans who have adopted UConn even though they never went there.


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However, for those that do have state loyalty, the fact that Rutgers does not have New Jersey prominently in their name leads to proposed state legislation that tries to ensure that it will (proposed legislation which will likely be voted down simply because not enough people in New Jersey care - including Rutgers fans).

All of the above are hurdles and circumstances which are different from the supposedly analagous situations you cite.



This, to me, is beyond my comprehension. I think it best we agree to disagree on this point before either of us says something that is likely to be considered bannable. ;)


Fair enough. :)





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And this goes on the assumption that New Yorkers care about any college university. If Rutgers continues to win, they will eventually find many from NYC supporting them. But once they start to lose, they will abandon them. It is the fickle nature of New York City residents for anything not considered 'their own' - Yankees, Giants, etc.


Any program has to win often enough to be considered a contender or it will lose fans. Indiana, for example, is never a contender in the Big Ten & their attendance reflects the fact - not much difference than Rutgers was prior to the past couple of years.


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3. UConn already has an established fan base for men's & women's basketball, both of which give them an enormous state-wide presence. In their first year as a Big East member in football, they were selling out a 40,000 seat stadium. BC cannot compare with UConn in basketball attendance. Any difference in football attendance is negligible despite BC's tradition. UConn has infiinitely more growth potential than BC. I live in CT & am a BC parent. I've attended games at both universities.


Again, as Philly residents like to say, 'potential' means you ain't done it yet.[/quote]

Actually UConn is doing it in terms of football attendance as compared to BC. Even with little tradition & even less winning, UConn's attendance is very comparable to BC's. It's a no brainer that they will surpass BC. The UConn stadium was built to be expanded. BC has no thoughts of stadium expansion & frankly no room to do so.


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But of the two, Rutgers and UConn, I'd lay my money on the Huskies having the best chance of reaching that potential, mainly because they have shown that they can - with men's and women's basketball. Football is a slightly different animal though, so all we can do is wait and see.


Even if half the people in New Jerey don't see themselves as Jerseyites & would never give a sniff to the interests of the state univerity or its athletic teams, half of New Jersey is still substantilly larger than the entire population of Connecticut. And don't forget that southwestern Connecticut with about 1/4 of the state's population is very much like New Jersey with a population from somewhere else & with little loyalty to the state's university.

Because of its head start in basketball, Connecticut is a couple of steps ahead of Rutgers in terms of developing a loyal fan base. So, your point is well taken in that regard. But New Jersey has a population 2 1/2 the size of Connecticut & better high school football for recruiting. Those are enormous advantages.


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Here's hoping both reach their potential but not at the expense of my Orange.

Cheers,
Neil


I hope that all of the Big East schools reach their potential. Everyone benefits by a higher level of competition & improved rivalries. :)

Trivia fact for the day: Syracuse's 2003 NCAA championship was its third national championship in basketball. 8-)

Cheers,
Bill


Last edited by friarfan on Sun May 20, 2007 11:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 11:23 am 
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Contrary to posts here, FSU & Miami, I repeat, are not falling apart. Decline? From what? The very top?


Someone begs to differe with you. ;)

Read down in the article to the section on "5 programs in decline."

www.sportsline.com/collegefootball/story/10187491


Would someone who is anti-split, over-stating Big East statue, & still bitter over departures to the ACC, make such claims?


Last edited by sec03 on Sun May 20, 2007 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 11:37 am 
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Interesting post, SEC03. :) Just a couple of comments.



Penn State is the East's most prominent football school - & is completely irrelevant in basketball. It is one of the best examples that football success can't buy success in both sports. Its cow pasture location is precisely the reason why it is not a factor in basketball. People can drive there for Saturday afternoon football, but they can't go to a basketball game after work on a week night. So, they are a one trick pony. That pony has the most important trick - football - but they are limited to that & it's why the Big East was not interested in them in the '80s when they were not a football conference.


I understand, and mostly agree with the point you are making, but they are mostly irrelevant in basketball because they can't 'win'. While their location may hurt their recruiting efforts, it's not as though Morgantown or Blacksburg are major metro areas either- and both of those programs seem to be doing alright in terms of winning.

If Penn State ever gets a coach like Beilein or Greenburg, I think the support the Nits would get for a 'winning team' (defined as a team likely to compete for the NCAAs) might surprise you. In years the team has been competitive for the NIT their attendance has been good enough to match the Eers and surpass the Hokies.



While the trend is toward week night football, keep in mind the trend is being made mostly by non-BCS conferences and the two BCS conferences supplying such match-ups are the ACC and the Big East. The SEC and the Big 10 rarely have these match-ups because they command the Saturday time slots.

UCF would likely be a disastrous choice for #9 at this point in time, but that is a different thread. ;)


Quote:
My guess is that the 16-team Big East will become a thing of the past within the next 5 years - either in 2010 or at the end of the current TV deal. However, the idea that 8 is worse than 10 or 12 is a mistake in my opinion. An $18.4 million BCS payout is $2.3 million for a member of an 8-team conference, but only $1.5 million for a member of a 12-team conference. Chances of getting to a BCS game are reduced by 50% when a conference goes from 8 to 12.


I've seen this statistic quoted before by other posters and I always shake my head with amusement when I see it. In an 8-team conference with no divisions and no championship game (and, of course, an auto-BCS bid), a team has a 1 in 8 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 7 teams in their conference.

In a 12-team conference with two divisions and a championship game, a team has a 1 in 6 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 5 teams in their division and the champion of the other conference.

Statistically speaking, a team has a better chance of getting to a BCS Bowl game in a 12-team conference with divisions and a championship game than they do in a 8-team conference.

Cheers,
Neil


Penn State has 45,000 plus students & the Bryce-Jordan Center is not shabby. There's a lot of cow pastures around several Big Ten Schools. Maybe if Penn State was in the urban blight, then Big East partisans could have clinged to something, but that wasn't the point.


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 11:41 am 
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It's a shame that there wasn't a man who combined JoePa's vision and Dave Gavitt's people skills around in the early 80s to get it done.

Ah, what might have been.

Cheers,
Neil


Neil, I agree that Joe Pa was the wrong man for the job, but even if someone else had been there & had pulled it off, I still think that Penn State would have left for the Big Ten. The good news is that they would have left behind a very good Eastern football conference. The bad news for us here in Connecticut, is that we would probably neve would have been part of it. Big East basketball built our program & the guaranty of football membership was the catalyst for our fb program to take the next step to move up a level. We weren't even a very good I-AA football program. UMass today is far better than we ever were.

It's interesting to speculate what might have been under a Gavitt-like leader at Penn State. The best timing would have been before the Big East was formed. A visionary in the late '70s might well have looked at the following schools for conference membership:

Penn State
Syracuse
Pitt
Boston College
Rutgers
Temple
West Virginia

Six members were al that were needed in those days to establish a conference. But a real visionary might have seen the potential for tying together big markets & for brining northern & southern schools together on the East Coast. This would have meant adding the following independents:

Florida State
Georgia Tech
South Carolina

Timing would have been everything because the ACC got Georgia Tech in 1979, the same year the Big East formed. After 1979, the obstacles against formation of a football-based conference increased.

Miami didn't have basketball from 1971-85, so they really weren't a candidate for an all-sports conference. Therefore, Virginia Tech may well have been added to the ACC back in 1979 instead of Georgia Tech.

Despite their distaste for the Miami program, the ACC would probably would have been forced to look to them for salvation for their football aspirations instead of Florida State back in 1991.

The other question that emerges is whether such a conference could have withstood the expansion plans of the Big Ten & the SEC. I'm convinced that Penn State would have left for the Big Ten regardless. Penn State accepted mebership in the Big Ten in the spring of 1990 even though they didn't begin competition until the fall of 1992. So, this Atlantic Ten could have found itself in a battle with the ACC for Miami in 1991, looking to Miami as a replacement for Penn State.

South Carolina or another southern member would eventually have gone to the SEC. Would this erosion of membership - Penn State & then USC or other - have set up a psychological insecrity that would have left such an Atlantic Ten in the same vulnerable state by the late '90s that it was in anyway. A battle for members between this Atlantic Ten & the ACC would probably have ensued anyway aome time after 2000. The only good news would have been if Penn State's original presence could have pried Maryland away from the ACC back in the '80s. Even without the southern tier, a "Big East" with Maryland as an anchor could probably have withstood even the loss of Penn State & still have thrived - perhaps even forcing an SEC raid of the the ACC for a 12th member.

If such an Atlantic Ten did lose membership & was seeking replacements, I chuckle to think that we at UConn may have come to be discussed in the same terms as UMass is today - a I-AA school with I-A potential if we want to step up to fill a slot in a big time conference.


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 11:50 am 
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Someone begs to differe with you. ;)

Read down in the article to the section on "5 programs in decline."

www.sportsline.com/collegefootball/story/10187491


Would someone who is anti-split, over-stating Big East statue, & still bitter over departures to the ACC, make such claims?


Are you referring to me or Doyel?

Just for the record, I am pro-split. :)

If it's Doyel, I wasn't aware that he was a Big East partisan. What's his background?


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