Tuesday, December 11, 2018

2018 MAC TV Facts & Figures

NOTE: For the purposes of these statistics, I counted the games that were played, with one exception that is noted below.  This also does not include the network placement of any conference championship game.

Here's the games that were counted


Some statistical notes
* Seven regular season games on ESPN2 ties the 2008 and 2016 seasons as the second highest number of games on that channel.  2005 had eight games on the channel.
* Buffalo's seven games on national linear TV is the most for any school since Western Michigan also appeared seven times during their Cotton Bowl season.
* For the two local TV games, the Buffalo at Toledo game aired outside the Toledo & Buffalo markets on ESPN+.  Cincinnati vs. Miami game aired on ESPN3 in markets where the game was not shown on local television.
* CBS Sports Network had six of their ten games chosen through the in-season selection process where they had a choice of more than one game, either as the first choice or in the case of Black Friday, the second choice after ESPNU.  In other words, I'm not including the situations where there were two games and ESPN took theirs first & left the latter to CBSSN.  For those six games, a game involving Buffalo was chosen three times.  Akron was involved in two of those games.  An interesting side note: two of those games involved Army, whose rights are owned by CBSSN.
* There were six situations where a pair of weeknight games were set aside and the network decision was made about 6-12 days in advance, either where both games were on ESPN platforms or one game was on an ESPN platform and one was set aside for CBSSN.  Western Michigan appeared in three of the games that were chosen by the network that is subscribed to in more homes or in one particular case, linear TV vs. ESPN+.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

2018 Conference USA TV Facts & Figures

NOTE: For the purposes of these statistics, I counted the games that were played, with one exception that is noted below.  This also does not include the network placement of any conference championship game.

Here's the games that were counted

TV = linear TV channel
FB = Facebook stream produced by CBS or Stadium


Conference USA has four primary partners so I've combined together the CBSSN games into one bucket, the Stadium games into a second and the ESPN digital games into a third.


Another way to uniquely slice Conference USA's data is linear TV vs. free digital streaming vs. pay digital streaming.  I believe ESPN3 is still included with a handful of telcos internet service independent of having ESPN as a linear TV channel, so I'm throwing those games under free streaming. 

Linear TV = CBSSN, Stadium or beIN Sports
Free streaming = Facebook exclusives (CBSSN or Stadium) or ESPN3
Pay streaming = ESPN+


Some statistical notes (maybe more commentary than notes)
* Data for C-USA is static throughout the season. All the network groups made their choices in the spring. So schools like UAB & Middle Tennessee making a combined six linear TV appearances while FAU appears in the same number of games isn't a surprise. They're just capitalizing on their 2017 success and what was expected in 2018. FAU & North Texas were the division winners in the preseason media poll.
* The number of regular season games that aired on linear TV nationally decreased from 35 in 2017 to 27 in 2018, while the number of Facebook exclusives increased from six in 2017 to ten in 2018. The addition of CBSSN produced Facebook games does impact that increase.
* Particularly with the selections CBS Sports Network produced for their Facebook games, it feels like they had at least the top 5-10 selections from the conference over the course of the season, particularly when you look over the choices they made for non-conference games.
* To my knowledge, the games that aired on ESPN digital platforms weren't selected by them. They were the inventory after the three linear TV partners made their choices. Where ESPN I believe had a some control was the decision to place a game on ESPN3 or ESPN+.
* This was beIN Sports final season of C-USA football under a three year agreement. I have no idea if the conference intends to continue with the network.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

2018 Big Ten TV Facts & Figures

NOTE: For the purposes of these statistics, I counted the games that were played, with one exception that is noted below.  This also does not include the network placement of any conference championship game.

Here's the games that were counted


With the Big Ten being a conference that has a pair of TV partners on relatively equal footing, I also broke down the conference's TV data by the network group and over-the-air broadcast vs. pay TV.  Pay TV for this discussion included ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and FS1 since BTN isn't as widely available as the other four.

Broadcast vs. Pay TV


ESPN vs. FOX Sports.  Both ESPN and FOX Sports have a maximum of 27 telecast windows.  BTN is covered under a separate TV deal, so even though it is majority owned by...New FOX? 21st Century? FOX FOX?....anyways, its not part of the same contract that FOX Sports has with the Big Ten.


Some statistical items
* Why does Nebraska have 13 appearances under the Big Ten deal when they only played 12 games?  The Akron game on FOX, unlike nearly all other weather cancellations, occurred during the telecast window.  FOX spent the time filling while waiting out storms that never stopped.  So I counted that as a Big Ten exposure for FOX and it looks like it was budgeted for in their final counts.  When Nebraska found Bethune-Cookman as a replacement opponent, that game was played on BTN.
* Half of the conference had their entire schedule controlled by the Big Ten's TV partners.  All 12 games for seven schools, which astounds me but at the same time feels like smart scheduling (EDIT: See the first user comment to this post as to why this occurred).
* The 45 games on BTN were played over 31 telecast windows.
* The combined number of regular season primetime games played or intended to air on broadcast television was five, down from seven in 2017.
* Over two seasons, Illinois is the only Big Ten school not to play on FOX.  All FOX Sports appearances have been on FS1.
* Rutgers had ten appearances on BTN for the 2nd straight year.  They have not appeared on an ESPN platform as part of the current contract structure.  Their last appearances on each ESPN channel:

  • ABC: vs. Ohio St., 10/24/15
  • ESPN: vs. Wisconsin, 11/1/14
  • ESPN2: vs. Michigan, 10/8/16
  • ESPNU: at Minnesota, 10/22/16
  • ESPNEWS: at Maryland, 11/24/16

* Number of regular season night games per network, including weeknight games.  6pm ET was used as the earliest start time for a night game:

  • ABC: 3
  • FOX: 2
    • Includes the Akron at Nebraska game.
  • ESPN: 3
  • FS1: 3
  • BTN: 9
    • 6 telecast windows

Thursday, November 29, 2018

2018 FBS TV Facts & Figures

For 2018, I'm releasing "Facts & Figures" posts by conference detailing TV appearance data for each conference.

ACC
American
Big 12
Big Ten
Conference USA
MAC
Mountain West
Pac-12
SEC
Sun Belt

I can't say that I'll do a post on independents this year.  The data is rather static since only BYU had their home TV appearances part of the in-season selection process.  Liberty could be part of this on a regular basis in the future.

I'll try to add a new conference each day for the next week.

2018 Big 12 TV Facts & Figures

NOTE: For the purposes of these statistics, I counted the games that were played.  Not the games that ended up being cancelled due to weather or other issues.  This also does not include the network placement of any conference championship game.

Here's the games that were counted, excluding the section labeled Member Retained Telecasts & Internet Exclusives.  The latter section's sole game includes Kansas St.'s member retained game.



With the Big 12 being a conference that has a pair of TV partners on relatively equal footing, I also broke down the conference's TV data by the network group and over-the-air broadcast vs. pay TV.  Pay TV for this discussion included ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and FS1 since FSN & Longhorn Network aren't as widely available.

Broadcast vs. Pay TV


ESPN vs. FOX Sports.  Note that ESPN's game count has a maximum of 23 games across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and Longhorn Network where FOX is not constrained.


Some statistical items
* Who appeared on over-the-air television the most as part of their conference's TV deal?  Oklahoma.  Their staggering 10 appearances on ABC and FOX eclipses all other FBS programs.   The only pay TV appearance they had as part of the Big 12 contract was the West Virginia game on Black Friday.
* How can Oklahoma make so many appearances on broadcast television?  To my knowledge, the Big 12 is one of the few conferences that doesn't have some sort of appearance limit when it comes to broadcast television or a limit that requires appearances on a conference TV network, which the Big 12 doesn't have.  Previously the conference had appearance limits attached to the ESPN side of the house (the limit was a relic from when ABC could only air Big 12 games), but those ended after 2015. 
* The only games West Virginia included as part of the Big 12 contract were their intraconference games.  The Mountaineers sole non-conference home game vs. Youngstown St. ended up being their member retained game.
* Broadcast network games increased from 12 in 2017 to 18 in 2018 and primetime appearances increased by one 6 in 2018.
* Each Big 12 school appeared at least once on ABC or FOX, a step up from 2017 when Baylor was the only school who missed out on a broadcast network appearance.  You'll find another statistical item about 2016 below.
* One of the anomalies that allowed Oklahoma to get so many broadcast network appearances was that all of their non-conference games were home games.  The Sooners, Kansas St. and Oklahoma St. had all of their games made available to the Big 12 pool after each school had their member retained game set aside.
* One constant on a year-to-year basis: After excluding member-retained games, if there's a Big 12 game on FSN, it is highly likely to involve Kansas or Iowa St.  Five of the six games distributed by FSN involved at least one of those two schools.
* Oklahoma St.'s non-member retained game vs. Kansas on 9/30 was their first non-member retained appearance since 2014 (9/13 vs. UTSA).  Their last appearance on FSN vs. another Big 12 school was a year prior vs. Iowa St.
* Kansas has made a single broadcast network appearance each of the last three years, with the last ABC appearance vs. Texas on 11/19/16.  Prior to this "streak", their last broadcast appearances were in 2009 when they made five appearances on ABC.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

2018 American Athletic TV Facts & Figures

NOTE: For the purposes of these statistics, I counted the games that were played.  Not the games that ended up being cancelled due to weather or other issues.  This also does not include the network placement of any conference championship game.  For the American, Navy home games were excluded from this count because they fell under a separate contact with CBS Sports that was signed while the academy was an independent.

Here's the games that were counted, excluding the section labeled Navy Telecasts.


Some statistical items
* The Cincinnati at UCF game marked the first matchup between schools in the currently constituted Group of 5 schools to play on ABC in primetime on a full national basis.
* The six games airing on ABC either full national or partially is the highest number of games to air on broadcast television from the conference, beating the previous high of four in 2015.  Of interest is that the conference had a rare split window where two of their games were distributed regionally at the same time on ABC with the other game on ESPN2, so they aired six games over five separate broadcast network windows.
* The four intraconference regular season games is by far the most the conference has had aired on ABC in a single season, beating the number from the past five seasons combined (3 from 2013-2017).
* As mentioned earlier, Navy's number is low due to the separation of their home games under a separate contract.  This is also why Houston, Temple and Tulsa did not reach double digits for appearances within the American's TV agreement.
* UCF, as pictured above, was the only school to make all of their linear TV appearances within the four primary TV networks for the conference.  No appearances on ESPNEWS or CBS Sports Network.
* UCF's game vs. Cincinnati was the first Saturday ABC regular season game for the Knights since 2013 when they hosted South Carolina.
* The number of games on ESPNEWS declined by one from 2017.
* ESPN3 and regional TV were lumped together since the majority of viewers outside of the areas watching it in linear TV may have viewed the games via ESPN3.  The same two schools who aired games on regional or local TV were the same who did it in 2017 (Connecticut & Memphis).
* Not included here is the Cincinnati vs. Miami (OH) game played at Paul Brown Stadium.  Three games from 2018-2026 will be played there and Miami (OH) was considered the home team, so the game is listed as a MAC controlled game.
* To see Cincinnati be skipped by ESPN and ESPN2 is a bit surprising, but the conference only had three games selected for those two networks during the season.  The number of Saturday & special date games to be selected to air on the four primary TV networks are as follows:

  • ABC: 4
    • National: 2
    • Reverse mirror: 2
  • ESPN: 1
  • ESPN2: 2
  • ESPNU: 15

Monday, November 26, 2018

2018 ACC TV Facts & Figures

NOTE: For the purposes of these statistics, I counted the games that were played.  Not the games that ended up being cancelled due to weather or other issues.  This also does not include the network placement of any conference championship game.

Here's the games that were counted


Some statistical items
* Clemson increased their ABC appearance count over 2017 by one.
* The number of ABC primetime games decreased by two from 2017.
* Twelve games on ABC is the lowest number of games from the conference since 2014 when just seven games appeared on the network.
* 2014 is the last year that North Carolina failed to register an ACC game on ABC.
* North Carolina's appearance count is lower than everyone else as they did not replace the home game vs. UCF that was lost to Hurricane Florence.
* 2013 was the last time Wake Forest was not shown on the Raycom Sports/ACC Network over the air package.
* If you are surprised that Virginia Tech wasn't shown on the RSN package, don't be.  Their last appearance on the RSNs was in 2015 vs. Pittsburgh and they've only appeared on the RSNs three times since the current contract started in 2011, with the other two appearances in that first year.