The Problem with ESPN…

By Justin Seibert| 3 Min Read | October 19, 2006

Note: Although the specific articles are pretty clean, the links below point to sites that may contain some questionable language (people are pretty passionate about sports). Please do not click on them if you will be offended. You’ll still understand the point of this entry regardless.

With the World Series finally ready to go, I began fondly reminiscing yesteryear and all the great sports that used to be available for public consumption via basic cable. When I was in college last decade, I enjoyed one of the greatest runs of television history – ESPN Sportscenter.

But Sportscenter is still on sayeth you. Technically you’re correct, but any avid sports fan in their mid-20s or older will tell you that it’s a mere shadow of its former self. Think Mike Tyson during his first title run and Mike Tyson now. Before he was the baddest man in all the land and now he’s a side show, saying that he might both fight women on tour and service them at Heidi Fleiss’ planned male brothel.

In the 90’s, Sportscenter actually gave you complete box scores and – gasp! – coverage of games no matter how bad the two teams were and what the major American sport was.

Now? As long as you’re a fan of the Yankees, Red Sox, Patriots, USC, or Notre Dame, Sportscenter still works for you. For the rest of the population, forget it. And they repeat the same shows over and over again each night. It’s not like they don’t have the time.

I’m not writing this to point out how bad ESPN was and how much I wish they had competition so they’d be forced to go back to their old ways. Well, not completely.
Think of Old Sportscenter (BSS – Before Sean Salisbury) as a buffet. You might be stuck in line having to wait through clips of burnt tater tots before you get to highlights of fresh fruit salad. But you will eventually get to the fresh fruit salad.

New Sportscenter (EHE – ESPN Hollywood Era) gives you plenty of chicken cordon blue, liver, and mushroom popovers, and a very limited amount of fresh fruit salad. If you like that style of chicken, liver, and mushroom treats, you’re in hog heaven. If you don’t, you may still stick around because there are no other buffets in town, it’s cheap, and you’re hoping to get to the fruit salad before it runs out (i.e. you fall asleep or your spouse asks you to take out the trash).

If you’re a Pittsburgh Pirates fan like some people who own Direct Online Marketing, you have plenty of problems, so maybe you shouldn’t even be worried about EHE. But if you’re an Oakland A’s fan, you should be really upset as your team tears through the American League West better than almost any team in the league through the second half of the season and you get nary a mention.

If Sportscenter were like Search Engine Marketing, it would be even better than BSS – it would be On Demand FPV (free per view) Sportscenter, allowing you to search for any team whose games you would like to see clips of. You could even catch a hockey clip.

It would almost be like a free Mobile ESPN unit. I think. I’ve seen 5,000 commercials for it just like you, but also just like you, I don’t know anyone who bought one before it finally admitted defeat.

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