Sport The three-year timeslot viewership high for Washington State-Oregon adds to criticism of ESPN’s production truck there
Viewing Picks for November 9, 2021
All Times Eastern Boxing WBA/WBC/WBO Super Middleweight Title, MGM Grand Garden Arena, MGM Grand Hotel, Las Vegas, NV Saul Álvarez vs. Caleb Plant — Pay per view, 9 p.m. Bundesliga Matchday 11 Bayern München vs. SC Freiburg — ESPN+, 10:20 a.m. VfB Stuttgart vs. DSC Arminia Bielefeld — ESPN+, 10:20 a.m. Vfl Bochum 1848 vs. Read more The post Viewing Picks for November 9, 2021 appeared first on Awful Announcing.
A recurring college football storyline this year has been complaints about video quality on particular game broadcasts, often of Pac-12 games. Most of the complaints there have been about ESPN broadcasts (including our coverage of the Stanford-Oregon complaints), but some have been about FS1 broadcasts. But ESPN after John Canzano of The Oregonian the long-running Twitter and website complaints (and the specific complaints for Washington State-Oregon this week, seen above) and got camera operators and other broadcast staffers to weigh in, significantly diminishing the predictable ESPN PR “This is normal” response; in fact, Canzano’s column even appears to have led to some tangible changes for upcoming games, as he detailed in Monday. But further Saturday viewership numbers that came out Tuesday helped further illustrate how foolish it was for the much-criticized “E” truck to be on this game in the first place:
Viewing Picks for November 11, 2021
All Times Eastern College Basketball Men’s Air Force vs. South Dakota (at Sanford Pentagon, Sioux Falls, SD) — ESPN+, 2:30 p.m. Vermont at Northern Iowa — ESPN+, 6 p.m. George Washington at Maryland — Big Ten Network, 6:30 p.m. Brevard at North Carolina-Asheville — ESPN+, 6:30 p.m. Sacred Heart at Providence — FS1, 6:30 p.m. Read more The post Viewing Picks for November 11, 2021 appeared first on Awful Announcing.
Washington State at Oregon (1,991,000 viewers): Most-viewed game starting after 10 p.m. ET on any network since Sept. 8, 2018 (Michigan State-Arizona State), per ESPN.
Just imagine if it wasn't shot via a Kinetoscope.
— James Crepea (@JamesCrepea)
On Saturday, Jon Wilner (of the San Jose Mercury News) helped illustrate just how dramatically different this Washington State-Oregon broadcast looked with a side-by-side (the Washington State-Oregon image there is also shown at the top of this post) comparing it to the Pac-12 Networks’ picture quality for Colorado-UCLA:
Here are P12 Network and ESPN pictures side by side
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All Times Eastern College Basketball Men’s Gavitt Tipoff Games (Big East vs. Big Ten) Creighton at Nebraska — FS1, 7 p.m. Seton Hall at Michigan — FS1, 9 p.m. FS1 College Hoops Extra — FS1, 11 p.m. Hall of Fame Showcase Day One, Mohegan Sun Arena, Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino, Uncasville, CT UMass-Lowell vs. Read more The post Viewing Picks for November 16, 2021 appeared first on Awful Announcing.
— Jon Wilner (@wilnerhotline)
It’s somewhat understandable that different broadcasts are going to come with different levels of staffing, and with different levels of video quality. At ESPN alone, there are a whole lot of ESPN+-only events that never would have been shown on a linear channel in the old days, and the expectations for the broadcast quality there are understandably lower. But it’s less understandable whylooked like this, even if it started at 10:30 p.m. Eastern. And the Wilner tweet is particularly notable for illustrating how much better of a broadcast came on a ( !) conference network in the same timeslot.
And the audience numbers help reinforce what a poor decision that was for ESPN. There were clearly a ton of people who wanted to see this game (involving CFP rankings #3 Oregon), and they were treated to an obviously subpar broadcast. And this part offeels particularly notable:
Viewing Picks for November 17, 2021
All Times Eastern Boxing Top Rank Boxing Press Conference: Crawford vs. Porter — ESPN2, 5 p.m. Max on Boxing: Crawford vs. Porter Preview — ESPN2, 5:30 p.m. Blood, Sweat & Tears: Crawford vs. Porter, Part 2 — ESPN2, 10 p.m. College Basketball Men’s Hall of Fame Showcase Day 2, Mohegan Sun Arena, Mohegan Sun Resort Read more The post Viewing Picks for November 17, 2021 appeared first on Awful Announcing.
I asked [camera operator Bill] Rice about the absence of a set day on a broadcast and he said, “In my 30 years it was the first time ever for me representing Disney that we didn’t have a set day.”
That dovetails with the narrative I’ve heard in the last 24 hours from other ESPN/ABC contractors working sporting events. They believe Disney is hyper-focused on cost cutting and is especially aggressive with low-priority events. Saturday’s game at Autzen Stadium didn’t utilize a stage manager, for example. It also used a back-up spotter. The spokesperson pushed back at that “low budget broadcast” comment, but that’s a logical conclusion for any of us to make when we tune in and see an underwhelming broadcast.
goes on to note that ESPN said they’re “providing the ‘E crew’ new equipment this week,” so maybe that helps fix this. However, it’s notable that “E” does not denote the last game ESPN is televising that week, though; they televise many more games than that, as show, with three games on ESPN proper ahead of this, two on ABC, three on ESPN2, and many more on ESPNEWS, ESPN3, and ESPN+. And that’s a big part of this; none of those other games on less-prominent cable networks or streaming-only platforms wound up with anywhere near the picture-quality backlash of this game on the main ESPN network. So that at the very least brings up some resource-allocation questions.
Your 2021 college football Week 12 announcing schedule
Friday, November 19 8 PM- Southern Miss at Louisiana Tech CBSSN: Chris Lewis, Corey Chavous 9 PM- Memphis at Houston ESPN2: Jason Benetti, Andre Ware, Paul Carcaterra 9 PM- Air Force at Nevada FS1: Alex Faust, Petros Papadakis 9 PM- Arizona at Washington State P12, P12 AZ, P12 WA: J.B. Long, Maurice Jones-Drew 11:30 PM- Read more The post Your 2021 college football Week 12 announcing schedule appeared first on Awful Announcing.
And that speaks to what the key issue is here. It’s not just that ESPN delivered a subpar broadcast of a game, it’s that they delivered a subpar broadcast of a game on the main ESPN network, and one involving the #3 CFP-ranked team, and one that drew the most viewers in that timeslot since 2018. That raises a whole lot of questions about their priorities, especially when they relate to the Pac-12; this was one of the few cases in recent years where a late Pac-12 game carried significant national interest, and yet, that didn’t get it better equipment. And it’s worth wondering why ESPN thought using a poor truck for this game would somehow escape notice. In the end, it clearly did not fly under the radar.
[; photo via Jon Wilner ]
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Viewing Picks for November 28, 2021 .
All Times Eastern Bundesliga Matchday 13 Eintracht Frankfurt vs. 1. FC Union Berlin — ESPN+, 9:20 a.m. Red Bull Leipzig vs. Bayer 04 Leverkusen — ESPN+, 11:20 a.m. Canadian Football League Playoffs Eastern Semi-Final, Tim Hortons Field, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada Montreal Alouettes at Hamilton Tiger-Cats — TSN1/TSN4/ESPN2, 1 p.m. Western Semi-Final, Mosaic Stadium, Regina, Saskatchewan, Read more The post Viewing Picks for November 28, 2021 appeared first on Awful Announcing.