Football season is back for another run and wearing more than ever more bling. Can football, as we know and appreciate it, hold up under the weight competing networks have piled on the backs of the game’s periphery? Follow the bouncing ball (pun intended).
Friday nights were for high school games, almost like a religion in some parts, while Saturdays were looked forward to because it was college football time. Sundays were special because we knew it was time for the best of the best, pro football.
Now it’s becoming something of a blur, watered down almost. The networks have taken advantage of the huge appeal of football and milked it for every edge they can get to capture each other’s viewers. Nothing wrong with that; after all, this is the USA and we have the best business model in the known world and the smartest people to run it.
Or do we? This first week saw the colleges on TV Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The NFL will be on Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays this season as always. Our high schools are holding on in spite of the greediness of the networks.
The NFL has pre-game shows that are redundant at best. Hours of nonsense from an assortment of experts shouting over each other.
Of course we don’t have to subject ourselves to it, which I don’t, but that’s my choice.
Putting up with challenges and 16 momentum-killing commercial breaks is part of the reason behind the slide in attendance and ratings. Now we have the 15-watt bulbs disrespecting the flag grabbing attention. Add in a few bad calls and inept officials trying to interpret rule changes meant to aid offenses and the whole scene can be likened to a Hollywood special effects dud.
How will the NFL react to their game imploding? It’s not much of a stretch to imagine stadiums full of fans watching through virtual reality glasses. The next logical step will be virtual reality viewing in your living room.
How about artificial intelligence calling both offense and defense plays and schemes? Millennials won’t need to adapt since they’re already in that zone, and it’s the Millennials who will eventually take over.
Oh, and there will also be some football along with everything else piled on the game. Take care, and pass the Windex. Scotty.