Down With CBS Sports

Steve Novick

Forget about Democratic sellouts, Republican obstructionists, and anyone else you might be angry at right now, and start figuring out how to take revenge against the worst people in the world: Whoever has been in charge at CBS Sports this weekend.

Yesterday I watched almost every minute of Washington blowing out New Mexico - a welcome sight, to be sure, but rather dull - while Northern Iowa was pulling off a spectacular upset of Kansas. CBS showed a grand total of about three minutes of the Northern Iowa-Kansas second half. At one point, CBS switched to that game in time for us to see Johnny Moran's three-pointer that put NI ahead 59-53 with 4:07 left, then went BACK to the blowout, only returning in the final minute!

Today, CBS showed exactly ZERO seconds of the second half of 12th-seeded Cornell stunning upset of 4th-seeded Wisconsin. Granted, it was a blowout - but the FACT that it was a blowout was amazing. They bounced around between three other games; they couldn't even give us a TASTE of what my kid brother described as the Battle of the Frozen Liberal College Towns? CORNELL, for goodness' sake! In the SWEET SIXTEEN!

Corporate greed is bad enough; corporate incompetence of this magnitude is inexcusable. Fans of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but Greg Gumbel!

Comments

  • Bill McDonald (unverified)
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    Steve, All the games are on your computer at CBS. Man, you are you having a bad stretch here. I watched Northern Iowa on the computer and it was great. This would be perfect for you. You can switch to another game at any time...if you suddenly change your mind.

  • Bill McDonald (unverified)
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    cbssports.com

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    I was out trying to simultaneously support the local economy and enjoy the tourney and even the Huskies fan at our table was annoyed by CBS. Boo, hiss.

  • TroyB (unverified)
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    Steve, I agree. Rather than watching on a big screen TV, we were forced to watch the end of the Kansas upset on a tiny laptop screen. CBS Sucks.

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    I agree, Steve. I watched the coverage today and found the switching back and forth to be very, very, very irritating. I too wanted to see the second half of the Cornell/Wisconsin. But even lacking that... if they'd just switched to A FRIGGIN' GAME and stayed with it then I wouldn't have been as disgusted as I ended up being.

    Switching back and forth between games like that in a sports bar could get one lynched. Why CBS thought it'd be acceptable is a complete mystery to me.

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    It's 'Gumbel' - not 'Gumble', my Ivy League Harvard Law School graduate friend...

  • steve Novick (unverified)
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    Alcatross - my mistake! how embarrassing!

  • Nic (unverified)
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    Steve you hit the nail on the head and read my mind. NCAA has the opportunity to opt out of the CBS contract after this year. While watching the Washington blowout I was forced to hurl expletives at the tv and take out all my frustration and anger on Brian Gumble...I mean Gumbel.

  • Kurt Hagadakis (unverified)
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    The important final four this week-end was the American College Cricket Championships in Ft. Lauderdale! Replays still available .

    Watching that really inspired me about what sport could look like in the 21st century. As always, I think its about consumers and producers. Steve's ire is piqued, ultimately, by his plight as a consumer.

    There were maybe 20 fans at the cricket. About 250 online. But we were able to put together our own tourney and distribute it world wide for next to nothing. Wouldn't that be great for Americans, if people were actively involved in that kind of sport, as producers, rather than consumers? Wouldn't March Madness be awesome as hundreds of small regional tournies, and let the viewer choose what they're interested in?

    This mentality that you have to pay someone 10x more because they can do something 1/10 second faster becomes a vicious cycle. Just like politics the money becomes the end, not the means. Everyplace I've ever lived, people that really love a sport are interested in watching less than the zenith of performance, because they love the activity. One can argue that T20 cricket is "cricket for people that don't like cricket". I think that's the error. Sports moguls think more about attracting a new 5% more than satisfying the existing fan base. You end up with something that's overblown and overpolished because it's geared to people that wouldn't otherwise be watching! Call it the Las Vegas effect. "Color commentary" has to be the worst example of blatantly presenting something other than the sport, because you're so sensitive to the reactions of people that don't particularly care to be watching.

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    The link is http://mmod.ncaa.com/

    Still agree though, wish they would show the good games on live tv when the game with the local team is less exciting. But at least it's easy to watch them online, and free.

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    Posted by: Kurt Hagadakis | Mar 22, 2010 4:11:38 AM

    The difference is that the NCAA's $6 billion contract with CBS for the D1 Men's Basketball Tournament is what pays for every other tournament that they put on. There may be a lot of commercialization and spectacle these days with D1 Football and Basketball, but not so much with sports like Field Hockey, or Water Polo, or even the D2 Basketball tournament. It costs money to put on those tournaments, and they wouldn't happen were it not for the CBS contract.

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    I suspect this has more to do with network television contractural obligations than stupidity by CBS Sports. Just like we all out here have to watch the Seahawks @ Raiders on over-the-air CBS despite the fact the Colts are playing the Steelers in Pittsburgh at the same time, there may be similar requirements that certain games MUST be aired in markets within X miles of a team participating in an NCAA tourney game.

    After all, the mommies/daddies and fans that have supported/followed their local Podunk U teams for years through thick and thin want to watch their sons/daughters and neighbors' kids play in what for many of them will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity - just participating in the tournament, win or lose, may be the fulfillment of a dream and many years of hard work/sacrifice on the part of both the kids and the parents. Don't they deserve some consideration?

    So Steve, now that we're down to just 16 teams, it's less likely you'll be inconvenienced by having to watch a local team participate in a blow-out either way instead of another game you'd prefer to watch. But for that one weekend of the year, think of the mommies/daddies and fans of the local Podunk U teams and spare us these tirades... if you're a huge fan of a particular team or want to watch or even just listen (the radio feeds are also available) to a particular game, tune it in on your computer. My internet connection isn't fast enough to support the video feeds, but I personally listened to 2 or 3 games in their entirety that weren't 'feature' games on broadcast radio/TV out here. And if you're still wondering what you missed, you can go back and watch full replays of each and every game - they're all archived.

  • Bill Mcdonald (unverified)
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    I'm a Philadelphia Eagles fan, and since the NFL only shows all the games on satellite I end up monitoring a little statistical display on the NFL site. You can tell who has the ball, who scored, but it's total crap and it hurts your eyes. I saw Northern Iowa was doing pretty well in the first half and I went to the CBS Sports site and got the game. I blew up the picture and it was great. I have highspeed Internet. The moment I sensed we were in a Brave New World was when the local TV switched over to the Northern Iowa game. It was a second or two ahead, but then it went to commercial. The commercials on the computer were different from the commercials on the TV. It was a little unsettling as I contemplated a vast world out there, each receiving different batches of commercials during the breaks. But I got over that and felt great about having a game on with no chance of them switching away. Compare that to the NFL nightmare and these complaints are misguided and petty. I mean just look at this sentence: "Rather than watching on a big screen TV, we were forced to watch the end of the Kansas upset on a tiny laptop screen." That's why they hate us.

  • Just Saying (unverified)
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    It should be DOWN with KGW and the Blazers. The Blazer game Sunday evening ran half an hour into the next scheduled program, The Apprentice. By the time KGW picked up what they called “regular programming already in progress”, or something to that effect, half the show and the assigned task or game shall we call it was over. The winner was being announced in the board room. For everyone who could care less about the Blazers, KGW should have had a delayed broadcast airing of the Apprentice show in its entirety starting at 10:30, and done a delayed news cast at 11:30 instead of 11:00.

    Shame on you KGW! How would Blazer fans like it if the entire telecast of the game was only declaring the winner and what is next? KGW can and needs to do a much better job of handling their programming. Their continued approach calls changing the channel and for a boycott of watching what airs on KGW.

  • Kurt Chapman (unverified)
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    Steve, it will be alright. Some have still not forgiven NBC for the Heidi game back in 1968.

    Would you want THEM delivering the NCAA March Madness?

  • Kurt Hagadakis (unverified)
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    Some have still not forgiven NBC for the Heidi game back in 1968.

    I still remember that one. I howled with delight...and then dodged lots of flying beer cans!

  • j. loewen (unverified)
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    <h2>Compared to health care the NCAA is just a diversion. There will always be another tournament next year</h2>

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