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Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN?

Posted: 8/17/2014 8:50 AM

Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


My best guess is the SEC Network will not have the same level of success that has been achieved by the BTN.  Here's why:

1.  An unofficial SEC Network has existed for a number of years with ESPNU, ESPN and ESPN2 for football and to a lesser extent for baseball.  Why pay for what one gets for free?

2.  Interest in the SEC is heavily into one sport: football. Football is not enough to sustain a network for 12 months.   

3.  Most SEC schools have fewer teams [hockey, wrestling, volleyball, etc.],  making coverage the other eight months of the year likely to be less successful.   

Your thoughts?
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Posted: 8/17/2014 9:24 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


Responding to your points:

1. No one has to "pay" for the SEC Network.  It will eventually be added to basic cable or an added "sports tier" just like BTN.  

2. While the notion that the SEC only cares about football is true for the most part (exceptions: Kentucky, Florida), I'm fairly certain the SEC Network could air voluntary weight training sessions in March and people from the south would watch.  

3. BTN is what it is because of football and basketball.  The other sports (with the exception of hockey) are just filler.  I don't know anyone outside of family of student athletes that tune into an afternoon gymnastics meet.

Long story short, the SEC has the most football crazy fans of any conference in the country - by a huge margin.  That alone is enough to carry the network.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 12:10 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


It was already added to my Comcast service at no charge. They play good baseball and it's popular. But football will carry it just fine.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 2:14 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


SEC Network will do just fine.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 3:24 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


The SEC network will make a ton of money and be a big success, but I'm guessing it will fall a little short of BTN numbers for the simple reason the Big Ten has more fans and a larger population base.  While SEC fans are passionate, they just don't have the same number of fans as the Big Ten.  

I believe the author John Bacon (a walvy slappy, but pretty smart) claimed Ohio State, Umich and Penn State have the 3 largest fan bases in the nation.  So it's not just the mass numbers of alumni and geographical advantage of the Big Ten, it's the number of fans, too.

This is also why Delaney will probably snatch up UVA and UNC before he kicks the bucket.

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  • kowitzc
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Posted: 8/17/2014 3:30 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



Badger1964 wrote:
1.  An unofficial SEC Network has existed for a number of years with ESPNU, ESPN and ESPN2 for football and to a lesser extent for baseball.  Why pay for what one gets for free?

Because that unofficial SEC Network will cease to exist. If you want any of the content that aired with the unofficial SEC Network now, you are going to have to pay for it now.
SRS80 wrote: Arizona outclassing Wisconsin. Better athletes. Bo is losing his cool and so is the team. Zona should be up 10 at least. They will win by a comfortable margin though.

Said during Elite Eight Game UW won 64-63.
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  • travrest
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Posted: 8/17/2014 4:26 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


If you drive through an SEC state, such as Tennessee, and listen to the local sports talk shows, you will hear SEC football discussed even in February and June. Whether its recruiting or off season drills, its discussed. They find a way. It may be doing an interview with an assistant coach from another team, but they talk SEC football in some fashion.

Sort of similar to when a Packer has a hangnail on his left pinky, it becomes big news in July. The Green Bay, Appleton, Oshkosh, and Milwaukee (and even Madison) markets find a way to target it as a big news flash.

No one watches the BTN to see what the volleyball or soccer team is doing. That's correct. Its for football and then basketball, in that order. The SEC interest in football can carry the same weight as the two sports in our conference. They will be fine. They just have to talk SEC football all year 'round. And they will find a way, just as our state sports outlets find a way to market the Packers in the middle of a basebal penant race.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 5:15 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



travrest wrote: If you drive through an SEC state, such as Tennessee, and listen to the local sports talk shows, you will hear SEC football discussed even in February and June. Whether its recruiting or off season drills, its discussed. They find a way. It may be doing an interview with an assistant coach from another team, but they talk SEC football in some fashion.

Sort of similar to when a Packer has a hangnail on his left pinky, it becomes big news in July. The Green Bay, Appleton, Oshkosh, and Milwaukee (and even Madison) markets find a way to target it as a big news flash.

No one watches the BTN to see what the volleyball or soccer team is doing. That's correct. Its for football and then basketball, in that order. The SEC interest in football can carry the same weight as the two sports in our conference. They will be fine. They just have to talk SEC football all year 'round. And they will find a way, just as our state sports outlets find a way to market the Packers in the middle of a basebal penant race.
A former co-worker who spent time in the Omaha area made a similar comment about Nebraska football. Husker football was in the news/sports in one form or another EVERY SINGLE DAY!

I wasn't born in Wisconsin, but I got here as soon as I could.

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Posted: 8/17/2014 6:02 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 





---------------------------------------------
--- BadgerFan81 wrote:

Responding to your points:

1. No one has to "pay" for the SEC Network.  It will eventually be added to basic cable or an added "sports tier" just like BTN.  

2. While the notion that the SEC only cares about football is true for the most part (exceptions: Kentucky, Florida), I'm fairly certain the SEC Network could air voluntary weight training sessions in March and people from the south would watch.  

3. BTN is what it is because of football and basketball.  The other sports (with the exception of hockey) are just filler.  I don't know anyone outside of family of student athletes that tune into an afternoon gymnastics meet.

Long story short, the SEC has the most football crazy fans of any conference in the country - by a huge margin.  That alone is enough to carry the network.

---------------------------------------------
They may add Nascar and WWF for filler, SUDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY, after church on Sundays there is nothing
Going on in the south, most people there can't spell GOLF.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 6:46 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


The SEC network will do just fine. With the marketing clout of partner ESPN, it has a leg up on the BTN when it was starting up. They have carriage on nearly every major cable and satellite system. The only downside for the SEC in comparison to the BTN is the market size. The BTN is the sole college network in four of the top 20 markets, Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and Cleveland. It shares markets like Washingfton, Philly and Pittsburgh with the ACC and probably has more penetration of the New York market than any other network. The SEC has to share all of its top 20 markets, including Atlanta, Houston and DFW. Success of these networks is about eyeballs. The SEC doesn't have as many in its core market.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 6:48 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



Badger1964 wrote: My best guess is the SEC Network will not have the same level of success that has been achieved by the BTN.  Here's why:

1.  An unofficial SEC Network has existed for a number of years with ESPNU, ESPN and ESPN2 for football and to a lesser extent for baseball.  Why pay for what one gets for free?


Your thoughts?
I'm curious about how much basketball coverage you think the ESPN networks give to the SEC compared to the Big Ten, ACC and Big 12?  I'm not talking about just top ranked programs, I'm looking at overall coverage of the conference?
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Posted: 8/17/2014 6:59 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


My thoughts? You're dreaming , amigo.

Football is huge in the SEC for sure. Bigger than anywhere. But it does not mean that other sports are ignored. Not by a long shot. The SEC is a major player in basketball, baseball, and track and field and local interest is high as evidence by so many basketball and baseball games being televised by the schools own networks that have been around for 30 years (now put out of business by the SEC network).

The Big 10 sponsors 28 sports and the SEC sponsors 21. The sports that the SEC does not sponsor are very minor sports like lacrosse, wrestling, rowing, etc. Many SEC schools have these varsity sports, they just don't compete in the SEC. Hockey is the major sport that the SEC doesn't have but Hockey is only popular where the pond freeze in the winter.

So no hockey in the football off season. On the other hand, some SEC teams will seat 80,000 people for the spring football game, which will definitely be televised. And SEC baseball is very big. 10 SEC teams have won the College World Series since 1990. The Big 10 hasn't won since 1964. Basketball? Kentucky alone has won more national championships than Indiana and Michigan State combined. Track? The SEC has won 19 of the 24 mens outdoor championships since 1990 and 17 of the women's. The Big 10? Zero and one respectively.

The SEC network will make a ton of money or ESPN would not have coughed up the cash that they have.
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Posted: 8/17/2014 8:01 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


I wonder if the SEC network will try different approaches than BTN or will closely follow the BTN pattern. 

For example they might try to be more regionally oriented within their coverage than BTN. For example, playing a Georgia - South Carolina tilt in the East and a Missouri - lSU match-up in the West. 

The SEC network is going to thrive.  Will it surpass the BTN in revenues?  

The partnership with ABC-ESPN is a strong one. Certainly stronger than BTN's with FSN.   The viewing base is smaller, but more dedicated. Will Texas A&M be enough for the SEC Network to significantly penetrate the Texas market with the largest population in the region?  

I think the growth curve for the SEC Network will be steeper than the BTN's since the BTN has already shown it's possible.

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Posted: 8/17/2014 9:43 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


The B1G, PAC, and SEC all have networks, but with three very different models. The B1G has a 49 percent equity interest in the BTN, while the PAC owns its networks outright, and the SEC simply sold its third-tier rights to ESPN. (The PAC has seven networks: one national and six "regionals" for each pair of schools in its footprint.) The B12 doesn't have a network because of Texas and the LHN, but the Oklahoma and Kansas schools have their own "regional" networks. The ACC actually has had a regional network based on syndication for years, originally through Jefferson-Pilot, and now Raycom; but they're hoping ESPN will build them a national network.

There's no reason why the SEC and PAC networks wouldn't be successful, nor why the B12 and ACC couldn't. There is a huge appetite for college sports, and its just about the last DVR-proof programming; that and the audience demographics (basically young males) are what make these networks so attractive to advertisers. The great thing is that the success of each of these networks doesn't detract from the success of the others because they're targeting different audiences. It's great for fans who are unable to see their own teams live.
These ARE the Good Old Days.

Last edited 8/17/2014 9:45 PM by OlBadger

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Posted: 8/17/2014 10:20 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



Fairway2 wrote:


---------------------------------------------
--- BadgerFan81 wrote:

Responding to your points:

1. No one has to "pay" for the SEC Network.  It will eventually be added to basic cable or an added "sports tier" just like BTN.  

2. While the notion that the SEC only cares about football is true for the most part (exceptions: Kentucky, Florida), I'm fairly certain the SEC Network could air voluntary weight training sessions in March and people from the south would watch.  

3. BTN is what it is because of football and basketball.  The other sports (with the exception of hockey) are just filler.  I don't know anyone outside of family of student athletes that tune into an afternoon gymnastics meet.

Long story short, the SEC has the most football crazy fans of any conference in the country - by a huge margin.  That alone is enough to carry the network.

---------------------------------------------
They may add Nascar and WWF for filler, SUDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY, after church on Sundays there is nothing
Going on in the south, most people there can't spell GOLF.
Is the men's team (of the sport I can't spell ) at your school, the two time defending NCAA National Champion? No, because  that would be my school, and we will watch it whether we can spell it or not.
***Winner- 2012 SEC Preseason Challenge***
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Posted: 8/17/2014 10:27 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



red55 wrote: My thoughts? You're dreaming , amigo.

Football is huge in the SEC for sure. Bigger than anywhere. But it does not mean that other sports are ignored. Not by a long shot. The SEC is a major player in basketball, baseball, and track and field and local interest is high as evidence by so many basketball and baseball games being televised by the schools own networks that have been around for 30 years (now put out of business by the SEC network).

The Big 10 sponsors 28 sports and the SEC sponsors 21. The sports that the SEC does not sponsor are very minor sports like lacrosse, wrestling, rowing, etc. Many SEC schools have these varsity sports, they just don't compete in the SEC. Hockey is the major sport that the SEC doesn't have but Hockey is only popular where the pond freeze in the winter.

So no hockey in the football off season. On the other hand, some SEC teams will seat 80,000 people for the spring football game, which will definitely be televised. And SEC baseball is very big. 10 SEC teams have won the College World Series since 1990. The Big 10 hasn't won since 1964. Basketball? Kentucky alone has won more national championships than Indiana and Michigan State combined. Track? The SEC has won 19 of the 24 mens outdoor championships since 1990 and 17 of the women's. The Big 10? Zero and one respectively.

The SEC network will make a ton of money or ESPN would not have coughed up the cash that they have.
You can add Softball and Women's Gymnastics to those as well. Men's Tennis? Enough interest that two current SEC schools have hosted the NCAA Championships THIRTY times since 1977. UGA-27 and TAMU-3. Big Ten during that time? ONE. At Illinois.
***Winner- 2012 SEC Preseason Challenge***
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Posted: 8/18/2014 7:01 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


Zero SEC teams seat 80,000 for the spring games.

Red, you say the sports that the SEC does not sponsor certain sports that the B1G does and proceed to call said sports 'very minor.'  This ALA character chimes in with softball, women's gymnastics and men's tennis? Please. Those three sports are the definition of 'very minor' in the public eye.

During the 2013 college basketball season, the top four teams in TV ratings all hailed from the B1G (Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, MSU). College basketball in the SEC wanes in comparison to the B1G. While the SEC leans heavily on Kentucky and Florida, the B1G currently has Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Illinois to generate widespread viewership.

The B1G pumps out more alumni than any conference in the nation. This base spans into three of the top four television markets (New York, Chicago, Philadelphia) this country has to offer.

I think the SEC Network will do just fine. Though from television markets to sheer population numbers, I find it very debatable that SEC Network will actually do better than BTN.

Last edited 8/18/2014 7:51 AM by hoopsgalore

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Posted: 8/18/2014 7:15 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


1. SECN has already launched in more households than BTN started with, although we really aren't competing with the BTN so it doesn't matter

2. This isn't true, SEC wins national titles in several sports, and has fanbases that love certain sports (track, softball, womens bball, mens bball, baseball, tennis, golf, volleyball. gymnastics, etc)

3. See #2
Badger1964 wrote: My best guess is the SEC Network will not have the same level of success that has been achieved by the BTN.  Here's why:

1.  An unofficial SEC Network has existed for a number of years with ESPNU, ESPN and ESPN2 for football and to a lesser extent for baseball.  Why pay for what one gets for free?

2.  Interest in the SEC is heavily into one sport: football. Football is not enough to sustain a network for 12 months.   

3.  Most SEC schools have fewer teams [hockey, wrestling, volleyball, etc.],  making coverage the other eight months of the year likely to be less successful.   

Your thoughts?
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Posted: 8/18/2014 8:45 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



hoopsgalore wrote: Zero SEC teams seat 80,000 for the spring games.
In the last three seasons Alabama has seated 92,31091,312, and 84,050 for the spring game. 
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Posted: 8/18/2014 8:49 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


I think there is more interest in SEC basketball than outsiders want to acknowledge. Of course Kent and Fla garner most of the attention but there are several programs in the conference that are competitive with those two. The SEC only got 3 invites to the tournament last season, I think they should have gotten more.

The thing that is totally unknown right now is what kind of ratings will the network deliver? Ratings will determine advertising rates which affect several things.


The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.

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Posted: 8/18/2014 9:03 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



red55 wrote:
hoopsgalore wrote: Zero SEC teams seat 80,000 for the spring games.
In the last three seasons Alabama has seated 92,31091,312, and 84,050 for the spring game. 
http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2014/4/7/5590714/spring-game-attendance-numbers-2014

That's 2014.

http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2013/4/21/4248898/spring-football-game-attendance-2013-auburn

This is 2013.  

I did not feel like going back further.  Alabama did not claim to have 80,000+ in either of those years.  I do stand corrected, though, as Auburn claimed to exceed 80,000.

Edit:  I decided to look at 2012, too.  Multiple publications listed Alabama just above 78,000.  This no doubt is an impressive number, but certainly shy of 80,000 and your numbers.

Last edited 8/18/2014 9:05 AM by hoopsgalore

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Posted: 8/18/2014 9:36 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



hoopsgalore wrote:
red55 wrote:
hoopsgalore wrote: Zero SEC teams seat 80,000 for the spring games.
In the last three seasons Alabama has seated 92,31091,312, and 84,050 for the spring game. 
http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2014/4/7/5590714/spring-game-attendance-numbers-2014

That's 2014.

http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2013/4/21/4248898/spring-football-game-attendance-2013-auburn

This is 2013.  

I did not feel like going back further.  Alabama did not claim to have 80,000+ in either of those years.  I do stand corrected, though, as Auburn claimed to exceed 80,000.

Edit:  I decided to look at 2012, too.  Multiple publications listed Alabama just above 78,000.  This no doubt is an impressive number, but certainly shy of 80,000 and your numbers.
You are right, those numbers are from 2009, 2010, and 2011.

http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Issues/2011/05/04/Research-and-Ratings/Spring-games.aspx
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Posted: 8/18/2014 9:43 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


Considering the partnership with ESPN (Sportscenter / Gameday is going to be an even bigger never ending SEC circle jerk) and the general level of sports obsessed (truly obsessed) SEC fans, I have no doubt in the slightest that the SEC network will do very well.
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Posted: 8/18/2014 9:57 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



ALA2262 wrote:
Fairway2 wrote:


---------------------------------------------
--- BadgerFan81 wrote:

Responding to your points:

1. No one has to "pay" for the SEC Network.  It will eventually be added to basic cable or an added "sports tier" just like BTN.  

2. While the notion that the SEC only cares about football is true for the most part (exceptions: Kentucky, Florida), I'm fairly certain the SEC Network could air voluntary weight training sessions in March and people from the south would watch.  

3. BTN is what it is because of football and basketball.  The other sports (with the exception of hockey) are just filler.  I don't know anyone outside of family of student athletes that tune into an afternoon gymnastics meet.

Long story short, the SEC has the most football crazy fans of any conference in the country - by a huge margin.  That alone is enough to carry the network.

---------------------------------------------
They may add Nascar and WWF for filler, SUDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY, after church on Sundays there is nothing
Going on in the south, most people there can't spell GOLF.
Is the men's team (of the sport I can't spell ) at your school, the two time defending NCAA National Champion? No, because  that would be my school, and we will watch it whether we can spell it or not.
With players from other states i.e. Justin Thomas.
But the TJ Trial is exceptional as is the Capstone club course.
The tooth brush was invented in Alabama, anywhere else it would have been called a teeth brush!

Last edited 8/18/2014 9:58 AM by Fairway2

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Posted: 8/18/2014 9:58 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


If you question the SEC network, you really haven't paid attention to college sports.

It will do very well.
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Posted: 8/18/2014 10:06 AM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


Once the SEC introduces some academic reforms, I'll care. Otherwise, BFD.
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  • kjim73
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Posted: 8/18/2014 1:02 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


With ESPN marketing it, the SEC network will get ratings.

The question is, will their business model deliver the money like the B1G network?
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Posted: 8/18/2014 3:57 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


The SEC Network will do very well, and will be successful. But, it may not get the same ad revenue that the B1G does for the simple reason that there are not enough SEC fans compared to B1G fans who watch games on television in the country.

See this famous article in 2011 from Nate Silver, which does an excellent job of explaining it.

B1G fans are simply more numerous, and more prosperous, than SEC fans. Now, the SEC will probably attract (at least in the near term) more neutral football fans just because of the quality of play in the SEC. But, I think the competitive balance issue between the conferences is starting to close.

Last edited 8/20/2014 9:02 AM by George2k5

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  • travrest
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Posted: 8/18/2014 4:59 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 



hoopsgalore wrote:
red55 wrote:
hoopsgalore wrote: Zero SEC teams seat 80,000 for the spring games.
In the last three seasons Alabama has seated 92,31091,312, and 84,050 for the spring game. 
http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2014/4/7/5590714/spring-game-attendance-numbers-2014

That's 2014.

http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2013/4/21/4248898/spring-football-game-attendance-2013-auburn

This is 2013.  

I did not feel like going back further.  Alabama did not claim to have 80,000+ in either of those years.  I do stand corrected, though, as Auburn claimed to exceed 80,000.

Edit:  I decided to look at 2012, too.  Multiple publications listed Alabama just above 78,000.  This no doubt is an impressive number, but certainly shy of 80,000 and your numbers.
OK, split the hairs between 70,000 or 80,000 for a spring game, while we get 8,000 - 10,000 or so. Meanwhile, the Packers get near 70,000 for a family night.

No, the SEC doesn't have fandom bragging rights over Ohio State, Michigan, or Nebraska. But many of their school's fan bases beat the snot out of Illinois, Minnesota, Purdue, Indiana, and even Wisconsin (which is the best of the rest) when it comes to fan interest. 

There is no comparison. On ESPN Wisconsin today, the question of the day was whether or not the guy who interviewed the Packers Eddie Lacy actually didn't know who the TV show "Family Guy" was. That was the question of the day. How much deeper can you go to get a Packers related topic? My goodness gracious. The guys who listen to this crap must be the rednecks of the north. There is a baseball pennant race going on. The Badgers are playing LSU and have a QB decision to make. But no. It has to be about some guy who interviewed an Alabama player who was hired in Green Bay.

Let's pull within 10,000 of what the average upper level SEC team does in the spring game, and we will have a leg to stand on.
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Posted: 8/18/2014 5:37 PM

Re: Will the SEC Network have the same success as the BTN? 


That article was written before Texas A&M and Missouri joined the SEC. That brings in one of the biggest fan bases in the nation in Texas A&M, and the second most populous state (Texas) as well as major sports markets --St. Louis, Kansas City, Houston, Dallas, Austin, and Fort Worth to join Atlanta, Miami, New Orleans, Orlando, Tampa, Nashville, Louisville, Jacksonville, Memphis, and Birmingham -- all with over a million people. Knoxville, Baton Rouge, Shreveport and Little Rock are not far behind.

The populations in the SEC footprint are not insignificant and neither are they less prosperous.


George2k5 wrote: The SEC Network will do very well, and will be successful. But, it may not get the same ad revenue that the B1G does for the simple reason that there are not enough SEC fans compared to B1G fans who watch games on television in the country.

See this famous article in 2011 from Nate Silver, which does an excellent job of explaining it.

B1G fans are simply more numerous, and more prosperous, than SEC fans. Now, the SEC will probably attract (at least in the near term) more neutral football fans just because of the quality of play than the SEC. But, I think the competitive balance issue between the conferences is starting to close.

Last edited 8/19/2014 9:20 AM by red55

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