Saturday, December 5, 2009

Western Iowa loves the Falcons, and other thoughts...

At times when I'm really, really bored, I head over to Awful Announcing, a great blog on sports media, and stare at the broadcast maps, and ask pointless questions. These are maps that show which NFL games are broadcast by a particular network at a particular time...and they lead to strange thoughts. I'll borrow one to demonstrate:

RED: Washington Redskins @ Philadelphia Eagles (FOX, 1pm)
BLUE: Tampa Bay Bucs @ Atlanta Falcons (FOX, 1pm)
GREEN: Carolina Panthers @ NY Jets (FOX, 1pm)
YELLOW: Seattle Seahawks @ St. Louis Rams (FOX, 1pm)

Most of this makes sense...each team's metro area sees their game. There's a top-line match-up for most uninvolved media markets. This particular Sunday afternoon, it was Washington-Philadelphia.

But it's the weird little parts that confuse me. Why is a small chunk of New York prevented from seeing the Jets? Blackout rules can't really apply . Does Western Iowa really love the Falcons or Bucs that much, or is a local on one of the teams? Is there a knot of enthusiastic Panthers fans in Louisiana? Why can't Miami watch their division rivals, the Jets?

I'm sure there are perfectly good reasons for all these strange little oddities. I just have no idea what they are.


James Patrick Conway said...

A really wierd one:

Due an agreement with the NFL owners it is illegal to broadcast any football game in a city during the same time a home game is scheduled. I guess by blacking out other football games and forcing me to watch the one home game I am more likely to purchase a ticket to go see it? I really don't understand.

Living in Chocago I have noticed that typically CBS covers the Pats and Fox covers the NFC so I usually flip between the two, but when the local Fox station is covering a Bears home game, the CBS affiliate usually shows a replay of Cold Case. This is not true for Bears away games. The thing is if this was designed to force me to see the Bears game in person wouldn't it make more sense to blackout the Bears game? Also if the Bears game is sold out does the organization lose revenue if its not the only game on tv?

Also this is definitely not the case for the Pats.

Quriltai said...

The blackout rules are crazy. Nobody's gonna drop $80 because they can't see something for free. What I especially don't get, though, are these very isolated media markets showing certain games...