Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Finally ABC Does It!

It may be a little too late, but at least the effort has been made. ABC will finally showcase a prime time college football game on weekly basis at 8pm ET. And it will be in high definition.

Brent Musburger will call the play-by-play and Bob Davie will be the color analyst. Kirk Herbstreit will join the crew on certain weekends, but where in the hell is Lee Corso? Lisa Salters will be the sideline reporter. I am guessing Herbie will join the crew when ESPN Gameday is at the site of the ABC prime time game, like ND-GT and OSU-Tex to start the year. ABC was smart to ditch Corso and Davie is decent choice, but he is no Gary Danielson.

I bought a HDTV last year and was disappointed ABC only broadcasted one regular season game in HD, Miami-Florida State. There might have been few more I missed but it was not like CBS and NBC where all the games were broadcast in HD. ESPN will still have their weekly prime time game and it will allow the Disney networks to showcase two games every week in prime time in HD.

It is a smart move by ABC, no one really watches network TV on a Saturday night. It is not like the 80s when I was a kid and couldn't wait to watch Diff'rent Strokes at 8pm. Why not showcase a college football game in the fall lineup? Well, the negative is most hardcore college football fans are used to tuning into ESPN/2 for their prime time football fix. Disney will be competing with itself for viewers. West Coast fans are either coming from or going to a college game around 5pm PT. Most people have satellite/cable TV and there are plenty of college games on in prime time with any of respective sport packages.

If ABC would have done this 15 years ago when ESPN was is its infancy, I believe the impact would have been bigger. Saturday nights have been a dog for the networks for a long time, I don't know why it took so freakin long to finally pull the trigger. The TV landscape has changed so much, and I wouldn't be surprised to see ABC pull the plug after this year if the ratings suck.

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