January 30, 2011
NFL Pro-Bowl Weekend
After viewing the first half of the NFL Pro Bowl, you can see the various changes that FOX tried to envelop as apart of their Pro Bowl telecast. They clearly make the game act as a prelude to the Super Bowl with a litany of references to next week’s game. FOX tries to create more of an event rather than a football game as the Goo Goo Dolls performed for about 10-15 minutes before the game, which I enjoyed as it draws in viewers and at least gets you to watch the first bit of the game. But once the game begins, it becomes very similar to a normal Sunday football game on FOX, it becomes boring because clearly none of the players are giving all of their effort and they’re just trying not to get hurt before the off-season. Personally, I would love to see the NFL (and other leagues as well) move to the format that the NHL just went to with the Fantasy Draft idea. In all honesty, I am the farthest thing from a hockey fan; I can maybe name you ten total players in the NHL, yet, I was mesmerized by the fantasy draft show on Friday night. I ended up watching the entire draft on Versus and enjoyed every minute, it was engaging, exciting, and interesting and made the casual fan want to watch. The players were excited, the fans were excited, and you got to see the personality of each of these all-stars as they walked up on stage and received their new team jerseys. Again, I am NOT a hockey fan at all, yet, this captured my interest and not only did I watch the draft but I watched the skills competition and parts of the all-star game as well. The NFL consistently is looking for ways to make the Pro Bowl interesting and generate greater viewership. What a better way to enhance the greatest sport in America, than to take the one thing the NHL got right, and implement it into their all-star experience. I can guarantee you people will be tuning in to see when the respected captains of Team Brees and Team Manning draft Chad Ochocinco, Chris Johnson, and Darrell Revis. If the NFL wants to improve their product as the greatest sport in America, ironically enough it should be looking to the NHL for some ideas.
January 20, 2011
John Beilein Radio Show
After attending the John Beilein Show last night at Pizza House I realized the profound impact fan interaction could have on a radio broadcast. Traditionally, a radio broadcast is one, two, or three people talking into a mic for that community to hear. Yet, through this interesting experience where many of my classmates, including myself, were able to ask Coach Beilein questions as a bulk of the radio show, it brought a whole new and interesting dynamic to the show as a whole. By the fans asking questions, you could see Coach Beilein become much more engaged in the show while, I felt, giving very candid answers. He was interested in all of our questions and really tried to connect with each and every person as he gave direct eye contact and spoke to each person that asked a question. You could get a sense that the show, prior to fan involvement, was a fairly standard coaches show with a hometown radio personality throwing up easy/fluff questions to get the average UM basketball fan excited. Beilein gave his typical responses to questions about the past few games and the next few games but we really didn't get any great info through the first half of the show. You could see the people there were not fully interested in the show as many just ate their pizza and listened passively. However, once the students started to ask questions to coach Beilein you could tell the room perked up. Specifically, when I asked coach Beilein whether he had considered playing two of the three freshman big men on the team I thought he gave a very candid answer. I do not believe the host, Ira Weintraub, would have asked a question of that nature as it may sound that he is questioning the coaches decision, something you wouldn’t want the host of the John Beilein show doing. However, when you have a member of the audience asking a question you are sure to get more candid questions as well as potentially more candid responses. His answer to my question gave great insight into that issue and I can assume was an interesting answer for listeners to hear. By adding that fan interaction dynamic and getting the people at Pizza House involved it made for a MUCH better show in which Beilein was more interested and I can imagine, fans listening were more interested. When doing a show in a live setting with fans watching, media outlets should strongly consider bringing the fans into the show as it provides for great entertainment and a more engaging show for all.