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  • Re: Attendance at Regionals

    Originally posted by Fishman'81 View Post
    I've said it before, etc...

    The NCAA doesn't care about attendance much, as long as the TV money/national exposure exists. Witness all the empty seats at hoops Regionals (which I've seen first-hand a few times) , while the NCAA nevertheless rakes in the dough hand-over-fist via TV for that tournament as a whole.

    Same deal for hockey, albeit on a much smaller scale... As long as ESPN is paying to show the games, the gate is irrelevant to them, as it should be.

    In this age of all-encompassing media-coverage (watching games on your friggin' phone, for example), fannies in the seats mean less and less. The Super Bowl could be played in an empty stadium this year, and the NFL would still derive a billion bucks from it.

    Worrying about physical attendance is a little silly, in light of that fact... And gifting lower seeds home-ice is a worse idea than ever, all things considered. There is just no cogent reason for it.
    Glad you are not an athletics or TV administrator: "The NCAA doesn't care about attendance"; "As long as ESPN is paying to show the games, the gate is irrelevant to them, as it should be.
    "

    Good Luck with your career in marketing athletic administration and TV ratings

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    • Re: Attendance at Regionals

      Rover, I agree with almost everything you said. The only slight disagreement I have is that I think it should be the venue’s responsibility to get fans there, not the host school’s. The role of the host school is pretty limited; they just provide some logistical support. I think Holy Cross, not BU, has been sponsoring the last few Worcester regionals, and they certainly don’t expect to make the tournament often, and certainly can’t be expected to bring 5k fans to the event. The venues have the marketing expertise and they are the ones taking the risk.

      The reason that I like the current system is that home ice in a one game elimination is so critical. And I don’t like awarding so crucial an advantage based on a deeply flawed system (which, however flawed, is still better than the smoke filled room for determining the tournament field) that, even if it weren’t logically or statistically flawed, yields flawed results because of the insular and unbalanced home/away schedules teams have.

      But we’re both in the east, where the current setup works reasonably well from an attendance standpoint. And I recognize that my viewpoint, which favors neutral venues rather over “atmosphere” isn’t for everybody. There are some long time attendees and posters I respect, like pgb and Alton, for whom atmosphere is much more important, who care about the game, and who’ve actually attended some of those regionals, and whose enjoyment was affected by the crowds, or lack of them.

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      • Re: Attendance at Regionals

        I am willing to bet if they lower prices more people will go.
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        • Re: Attendance at Regionals

          Those of you wanting 30-45 minutes or whatever it is between games, that will never happen unless they change the rules pertaining to pregame time. Currently, pregame is 60 minutes, and they have it outlined to the minute when teams can take the ice for warm ups, when teams must leave the ice for warm ups, etc.

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          • Re: Attendance at Regionals

            [QUOTE=FredDavenport;5736013]Glad you are not an athletics or TV administrator: "The NCAA doesn't care about attendance"; "As long as ESPN is paying to show the games, the gate is irrelevant to them, as it should be.

            I have no interest in marketing anything... Marketing takes care of itself if the product holds water,and college hockey seems to have found its niche.

            I've been a fan of the sport for 35 years, and it's been a mere 10 years or so during which nearly every Regional game has been televised. That's a huge step-up from the many previous years, when all the nation got to see was the FF, or even only the NC game.

            Sorry to repeat myself on this point, but no one seems to be taking it seriously: March Madness Regionals are quite often played in half-empty venues, yet the tournamaent as a whole rakes in $2.75 gazillion each and every year... From any reasonable perspective, the TV money is the cat's meow.

            Just as an aside, Alton's suggestion that the four top seeds host on-campus works for me... But I sure as can be don't want to see lower seeds get the gift of playing at Yost/Mariucci, eg. just for the sake of a few more people showing-up. There is never any justification for siting games unfairly, just for the sake of the gate.
            Last edited by Fishman'81; 06-06-2013, 01:54 AM.

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            • Re: Attendance at Regionals

              Originally posted by Rover View Post
              I don't see the big problem here either. So of the 4 regionals 1 tends to not work too well. Because of that I'd rather not blow up the entire system. As you say, somebody's making money on this since the games are televised and arenas are bigging to host the events.

              My view is that the onus is on the host school to get their own fans to the venue. If you can't do that don't host the event. If that means extra costs of busing people there or purchasing tickets and then discounting them for your own fans so be it. You can have co-hosts if needed to better ensure at least one team with a local presence will make the tournament.

              Its similar to how football bowls work. Awhile back a local team that shall remain nameless (BC) was complaining about getting worse bowl bids than teams with lesser records. Their AD in a fit of honesty confessed that the problem was the fans don't travel. A good bowl required a 12K committment from a school, and for optics/concessions/economic impact they wanted actual butts in the seats. BC would only bring about 4K and had the $$$ to purchase the rest but it would have been 8,000 empty seats. Request denied.

              So with the regionals if Michigan wants to host Grand Rapids, BU in Worcester, Robert Morris on Pittsburgh, Denver in Denver, etc they should commit to bringing around 5K people to the game depending on the venue. No that won't fill up the arena and yes that will be problematic if no local schools make it but that's the chance you take. When I was a student the school would do a lot to get the fans out to the FF (hotel rooms, flights, tix, etc). By 2009 they did none of that and called me two days before the game to tell me they had tickets for me after all (I'd been a season ticket holder for 15 years at the time). That's not going to cut it, but this plan forces athletic departments to step up their game a little bit.
              I agree in principle, but those numbers just aren't realistic for most schools. There's no way UofM can get 5k to Grand Rapids unless UofM is playing. It's just not going to happen, even if the tickets are free. Fairfield is a co-host with Yale in Bridgeport again next year, and they don't even have a hockey team anymore, The bottom line is that hockey isn't football, and I don't think there's a college in the land that can sell 5k seats without their team being in it.

              As for Grand Rapids, yeah, it was a worst case scenario for them. On the other hand, they got the eventual national champion. Possibly next time more people will be interested on a whim, no matter who is playing.

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              • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                Originally posted by Fishman'81 View Post
                I've been a fan of the sport for 35 years, and it's been a mere 10 years or so during which nearly every Regional game has been televised. That's a huge step-up from the many previous years, when all the nation got to see was the FF, or even only the NC game.
                Yeah, makes for a great weekend, especially since you can DVR. I remember going to the regional in Albany in 2000 (the BU-St. Lawrence game) and trying to find out the results of the Western Regional (only one, this was still the 12 team tournament). It wasn't even in the Albany newspaper the next morning, let alone being televised live or on a few hour delay.

                Sorry to repeat myself on this point, but no one seems to be taking it seriously: March Madness Regionals are quite often played in half-empty venues, yet the tournamaent as a whole rakes in $2.75 gazillion each and every year... From any reasonable perspective, the TV money is the cat's meow.
                Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that the Men's Ice Hockey tournament (including the regionals) makes money for the NCAA, and is the only other tournament to do so. I believe that the NCAA would go to neutral sites for early round games in all sports, but can't afford to.

                Just as an aside, Alton's suggestion that the four top seeds host on-campus works for me... But I sure as can be don't want to see lower seeds get the gift of playing at Yost/Mariucci, eg. just for the sake of a few more people showing-up. There is never any justification for siting games unfairly, just for the sake of the gate.
                Do you mean higher seed getting the gift of playing at Yost/Mariucci? Alton's suggestion would place the game at the higher team's home rink, which would be Yost/Mariucci if Michigan/Minny were the higher seed. And Alton's suggestion would have the eight top seed hosting the first round.

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                • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                  Haven't read the whole thread, so forgive me if this has been discussed. But it seems to me the biggest opponents of the current system are the "Big Name" schools that as of late have had a hard time getting out of the regionals and moving onto the Frozen Four.

                  What would have been the uproar in 2010 if home teams hosted the first round? Bemidji State would have hosted Michigan (or Yale if they went by strict seeding) in the ~2400 seat John Glas Fieldhouse. Would have been an awesome atmosphere in Bemidji, but I can see a whole lot of complainers if that would have happened.
                  Last edited by beaverhockeyfan; 06-06-2013, 09:38 AM.
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                  • Originally posted by matt View Post
                    I agree in principle, but those numbers just aren't realistic for most schools. There's no way UofM can get 5k to Grand Rapids unless UofM is playing. It's just not going to happen, even if the tickets are free. Fairfield is a co-host with Yale in Bridgeport again next year, and they don't even have a hockey team anymore, The bottom line is that hockey isn't football, and I don't think there's a college in the land that can sell 5k seats without their team being in it.

                    As for Grand Rapids, yeah, it was a worst case scenario for them. On the other hand, they got the eventual national champion. Possibly next time more people will be interested on a whim, no matter who is playing.
                    What I envision particularly with the concept of co-hosts is that one of those schools will be represented in their regional. Perhaps even both. But yes in the event MU and MSU are hosting Grand Rapids and no Michigan team makes it you're going to have a problem.

                    However what I like is small schools are welcome to host provided they have a rabid fan base that shows up for games. That's the way it ought to be anyway. I have no idea why Holy Cross hosts events like this. They ought to put the time and effort into upgrading the program.

                    Finally, I think TV is a factor in that coverage got ahead of the growth in the game's popularity a little bit. I too remember the only way to see BU play in the regionals was to hop the fan bus out to Albany. No need for that anymore as I can watch it on the big screen TV with a few tasty beverages in my hand. In some sports the popularity is at a point where you have enough fans to go around between those who watch on TV and those who travel to the games. The FF has clearly reached that level. It seems to sell out even though its on ESPN every year. I think we need to give the regionals some time to catch up and perhaps a few tweaks will help.
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                    • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                      http://www.collegehockeynews.com/new...g_regional.php

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                      • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                        Originally posted by CLS View Post
                        Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that the Men's Ice Hockey tournament (including the regionals) makes money for the NCAA, and is the only other tournament to do so.
                        In Pittsburgh we were told that men's basketball, wrestling, and hockey are the only 3 tourney's that make money. This was by someone closely connected to the Frozen Four. Hard to believe but apparently true.
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                        • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                          Originally posted by MarkEagleUSA View Post
                          In Pittsburgh we were told that men's basketball, wrestling, and hockey are the only 3 tourney's that make money. This was by someone closely connected to the Frozen Four. Hard to believe but apparently true.
                          Not hard for me to believe. One of the beauties of wrestling is that is a very low expense sport. Appropriate sized venues should be easy to find, and the only equipment you need is a mat.

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                          • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                            Originally posted by MarkEagleUSA View Post
                            In Pittsburgh we were told that men's basketball, wrestling, and hockey are the only 3 tourney's that make money. This was by someone closely connected to the Frozen Four. Hard to believe but apparently true.
                            Hard to believe indeed. I wonder who is paying whom how much in cases where high seeds host regionals. The D-I FCS Football tournament draws well at the schools involved, so I don't see why that wouldn't make money. In that case, every game except for the championship is played at the higher seed's home stadium. I wonder what the deal is with the baseball tournament, too. I would have thought they'd make some profit off of that.

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                            • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                              Originally posted by beaverhockeyfan View Post
                              What would have been the uproar in 2010 if home teams hosted the first round? Bemidji State would have hosted Michigan (or Yale if they went by strict seeding) in the ~2400 seat John Glas Fieldhouse. Would have been an awesome atmosphere in Bemidji, but I can see a whole lot of complainers if that would have happened.
                              I can't imagine anybody complaining about that; if you know the system going in, and the system says that the top 8 seeds host first round games, than what would be the basis for complaint? The #9 seed in the lacrosse tournament doesn't get to complain that they have to go on the road. They might complain about being #9 instead of #8, but that's because lacrosse doesn't have anything like PWR (and the committee has some really messed up priorities for seeding, but that's a different story for a different sport).

                              If you have a strict system like hockey does, where the seedings are based on a mathematical system, however flawed, and you grant the top 8 teams home ice, there really isn't any room for anybody to complain without appearing ignorant. It's like fans who complain now when their team doesn't make the tournament: they are easily ignored, because the system in place, for better or worse, is non-arbitrary.

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                              • Re: Attendance at Regionals

                                Originally posted by WiscDC View Post
                                The D-I FCS Football tournament draws well at the schools involved, so I don't see why that wouldn't make money. In that case, every game except for the championship is played at the higher seed's home stadium.
                                I think in the case of FCS football, all of the travel expenses keep the tournament from making a profit. Every game has 75 or so players & coaches who have to travel (by plane if it's more than 400 miles) and spend 2 nights in hotel rooms. I would think that would eat in to any of the ticket and TV revenues that the tournament receives. Not to mention the fact that most of the schools who regularly make the tournament aren't exactly near a major airport--I'm sure that the cost of transporting 75 people from Missoula, Montana, to Boone, North Carolina, and back is pretty significant.

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                                --The Montreal Gazette, March 4, 1875.

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