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   Welcome to TSLMail #148 - Friday, October 22, 2004    
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TV Coverage: The ACC versus the Big East
by Chris James, TechSideline.com

Back when rumors of the ACC expansion were just beginning, the phrase that resonated the most in newspapers and on internet message boards was "TV markets". The two major players in the conference realignment were the ACC, obviously, and the Big East. You know the story by now. The ACC wanted Miami to join the conference, and the other top contenders were Syracuse and Boston College because of television exposure that the ACC would receive in the north, especially with the Boston market. To make a long story short, instead of Syracuse, the ACC got Virginia Tech.

By taking the top two programs from the Big East in Miami and Virginia Tech, the ACC went a long way in strengthening its own attractiveness to the networks, while at the same time effectively putting a major competing conference out of commission, as far as television exposure goes. Need proof? Take a look at the following table, which lists the number of television games that each conference has had, or is scheduled to have, on the major networks in 2004. (Note: Conference Games of the Week, which are shown on ESPN Regional for the Big East, and Jefferson Pilot Sports for the ACC, are not included)

Televised Games, 2004

ABC

ESPN

ESPN2

NBC

TBS

Total

Big East

4

5

8

2

0

19

ACC

12

11

8

0

1

32

Big difference, huh? Three times as many ACC games shown on ABC as Big East games, and over twice as many on ESPN. A grand total of 32 televised games for the ACC, and 19 for the Big East. And that doesnít include empty television slots in the coming weeks that have not been handed out yet. Expect the advantage for the ACC to keep growing as the season moves forward.

But that only scratches the surface. Letís move along and take a look at the list of televised games thus far, for both the Big East and ACC. First for the Big East:

Big East Televised Games Through 10/21/04

Game

Date

Network

Virginia at Temple

Sat. Sept. 4

ESPN2

Michigan St. at Rutgers

Sat. Sept. 4

ABC

Syracuse at Purdue

Sun.Sept. 5

ABC

Pittsburgh at South Florida

Mon. Sept. 6

ESPN

Penn St. at Boston College

Sat. Sept. 11

ABC

UConn at Boston College

Fri. Sept. 17

ESPN2

Nebraska at Pittsburgh

Sat. Sept. 18

ABC

Maryland at West Virginia

Sat. Sept. 18

ESPN2

Boston College at Wake Forest

Sat. Sept. 25

ESPN2

Pittsburgh at UConn

Thur. Sept. 30

ESPN2

West Virginia at Virginia Tech

Sat. Oct. 2

ESPN

Florida St. at Syracuse

Sat. Oct. 9

ESPN2

West Virginia at UConn

Wed. Oct. 13

ESPN

Boston College at Pittsburgh

Sat. Oct. 15

ESPN2

Syracuse at West Virginia

Thur. Oct. 21

ESPN

And now for the ACC:

Televised Games for the ACC Through 10/21/04

Game

Date

Network

USC vs. Virginia Tech

Sat. Aug. 28

ESPN

Virginia at Temple

Sat. Sept. 4

ESPN2

Wake Forest at Clemson

Sat. Sept. 4

ABC

Florida St. at Miami

Fri. Sept. 10

ABC

Georgia Tech at Clemson

Sat. Sept. 11

ABC

North Carolina at Virginia

Sat. Sept. 11

ABC

Maryland at West Virginia

Sat. Sept. 18

ESPN2

UAB at Florida St.

Sat. Sept. 18

ESPN2

Clemson at Texas A&M

Sat. Sept. 18

TBS

Ohio St. at NC State

Sat. Sept. 18

ABC

Miami at Houston

Thur. Sept. 23

ESPN

Boston College at Wake Forest

Sat. Sept. 25

ESPN2

NC State at Virginia Tech

Sat. Sept. 25

ESPN

Clemson at Florida St.

Sat. Sept. 25

ABC

North Carolina at Florida St.

Sat. Oct. 2

ESPN2

West Virginia at Virginia Tech

Sat. Oct. 2

ESPN

Miami at Georgia Tech

Sat. Oct. 2

ABC

Clemson at Virginia

Thur. Oct. 7

ESPN

Florida St. at Syracuse

Sat. Oct. 9

ESPN2

Georgia Tech at Maryland

Sat. Oct. 9

ABC

Louisville at Miami

Thur. Oct. 14

ESPN

Virginia at Florida St.

Sat. Oct. 16

ESPN

NC State at Maryland

Sat. Oct. 16

ABC

The first comparison between the two conferences is the number of ABC games. The Big East has been featured in 4 ABC games, and each one of those games has been a Big East team taking on a high profile out of conference opponent. There have been a grand total of zero Big East Conference matchups on ABC this season. Rutgers, Syracuse, Boston College and Pittsburgh. How many viewers are going to tune in just to watch those teams play? Very few, especially Rutgers. But when matched up with Michigan St., Purdue, Penn St. and Nebraska, those games have a much greater national appeal. Point being, it is very difficult to find a conference game in the Big East this year worthy of putting on ABC over games from the ACC and SEC. ABC is fulfilling their contractual obligations to the Big East by matching up Big East teams with high profile out of conference opponents. There just arenít any Big East games that are very interesting this season. Iím not trying to be critical of our former conference mates, but thatís just the way it is. Back when CBS had the Big East contract, they used to do exactly the same thing with Miami and Virginia Tech in the Big East.

The ACC has fared much better with regards to ACC games. Each week of the season there has been an ACC conference game on ABC, with the exception of September 18, which featured Ohio St. at NC State. There are so many teams with good talent in the ACC this year, and it is a very intriguing race from top to bottom. The ACC has always had a lot of games on ABC, and with the addition of Miami and Virginia Tech there will be even more. Even though the Hokies havenít played on ABC yet this season, it is still interesting and fun to watch these ACC games on ABC and realize that the outcomes have an effect on Tech.

Moving along, letís take a look at the remaining Big East and ACC games that are scheduled to appear on television. Starting with the Big East:

Remaining Big East TV Schedule

Game

Date

Network

Boston College at Notre Dame

Sat. Oct. 23

NBC

Pittsburgh at Notre Dame

Sat. Nov. 13

NBC

UConn at Rutgers

Thur. Nov. 25

ESPN2

West Virginia at Pittsburgh

Thur. Nov. 25

ESPN

Wow. Part of October left, and all of November, and just 4 Big East games scheduled to be televised. Of those 4 games, 2 are on NBC because Boston College and Pittsburgh are playing the Irish on the road. Donít forget Thanksgiving Day though. Itís all Big East, all the time on the ESPN networks, beginning with a 10:00am matchup of annual titans UConn and Rutgers. 10am? And we complain about the lack of tailgating time at the noon games at Lane! Anybody want to go back to the Big East? I didnít think so.

Now for the remaining ACC television schedule:

Remaining ACC TV Schedule

Game

Date

Network

Miami at NC State

Sat. Oct. 23

ESPN

Florida St. at Wake Forest

Sat. Oct. 23

ABC

Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech

Thur. Oct. 28

ESPN

NC State at Clemson

Sat. Oct. 30

ESPN2

Miami at UNC

Sat. Oct. 30

ESPN2

Florida St. at Maryland

Sat. Oct. 30

ABC

Florida St. at NC State

Thur. Nov. 11

ESPN

Maryland at Virginia Tech

Thur. Nov. 18

ESPN

Virginia Tech at Miami

Sat. Dec. 4

ABC

Yet again, the trend continues. For the next two weeks, ACC conference games will be featured on ABC. ABC has not picked their games past Oct. 30th, so the Hokies still have a chance to be featured in ABC regional action against North Carolina and/or Virginia. Also, it is interesting to note that ABCís first big national television game of the year was Florida St. at Miami. ABC will also show Virginia Tech at Miami on Dec. 4th, the last day of the regular season. So ABC began the year with a big, nationally televised ACC matchup, and will end the season with the same.

In conclusion, Virginia Tech has two remaining games that have not been picked up by television as of yet: at North Carolina on November 6th, and home against Virginia on November 27th. Both of those games will be televised, itís just a question of by whom and at what time. Games competing with the Hokies and North Carolina on November 6th will be Clemson at Miami, Duke at Florida St., Maryland at Virginia and Georgia Tech at NC State. Games competing with Tech and UVA on Nov. 27th are Wake Forest at Maryland, and East Carolina vs. NC State in Charlotte. Right now it would appear that the Virginia Tech/UNC game would be televised by either ESPN, ESPN2 or Jefferson Pilot Sports, while the Virginia Tech/Virginia game would be aired on ABC.

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   TechSideline.com Updates From the Past Week


2004-05 VT Men's Basketball Preview
by Elijah Kyle, 10/21/04, 11:40 pm
After all the talk about what admission to the Atlantic Coast Conference will mean to the menís basketball program at Virginia Tech, the time has arrived to kick off a season that will always serve as a historical perspective, and hopefully catalyst, in the renewed interest of a program that has been dormant for far too long.
in TSL Pass

TechSideline.com Recruiting Report Archive, 10/20/04 (Audio)
by TechSideline.com, 10/21/04, 2:35 pm
This week, Will shows up late, and Mike makes him pay for it with about 7 extra minutes on the air. Mike and Will crack a few jokes about baseball and then transition on to other topics, including Xavier Adibi's return, the ACC bowl race, and a look back at the 2001 recruiting class. Click here to access a list of 2001 signees, and keep it handy for reference when listening to this archive. (Time: 31:31).
in TSL Pass

So What Are We Supposed To Do This Saturday?
by Jim Alderson, 10/21/04, 11:05 am
The 2004 Virginia Tech football season has been an ACC block party, with five home games out of seven and trips no further away than DC and Winston-Salem. The result has been that I and a bunch of other Hokies have attended seven Virginia Tech football games over the last eight weeks, including the last six weeks in a row. With the fortnight or so before we journey down that inter-coastal waterway known as I-85 to play a divisional rival in the ACCís first multi-Tech game, we find ourselves with what has been a rarity this year, an open date. We are at loose ends.
in TSL Pass

VT Olympic Sports Holding Their Own in ACC
by Chris James, 10/20/04, 4:25 pm
When Virginia Tech joined the ACC, pundits noted that while the Hokies would bring a solid football team and a rabid football fan base to the conference, the strong Olympic sports programs of the other ACC teams would greatly overshadow those of Tech. The fall sports still have a long way to go before we see how the Hokies finish in the standings, but one thing is for certainÖfor the most part, the critics were wrong.
in TSL Pass

Tech Talk Tuesday (Audio) for 10/19/04
by TechSideline.com, 10/20/04, 3:00 pm
The TTT gang takes a look at the season thus far and also talks about men's soccer. Guests include Voice of the Hokies Bill Roth, VT soccer coach Oliver Weiss, and TechSideline.com's Will Stewart.
in TSL Pass

Hokie Hotline Notes for 10/18/04
by Wayne Clevenger, 10/20/04, 11:55 am
Bryan Stinespring, Jim Weaver, Billy Hite, and Lorenzo Ward go over VT's hard-fought victory of FAMU, breaking down their strategy and the twists and turns in the game.  Okay, maybe not, but they do agree that the game against Georgia Tech next week is going to be a tough one.
in Hotline Notes

Football Notes: Hokies Schedule Syracuse, ACC Unveils Division Names and New Logo, and Other News
by Stefan Adams, TechSideline.com, 10/20/04, 10:45 am
Virginia Tech announced two future football matchups against former Big East opponent Syracuse. The two games will be played in 2010 and 2011. The first game of the series will be played in the Orangeís Carrier Dome on September 25, 2010 with the rematch nearly a year later on September 16, 2011 in Lane Stadium.
in News and Notes

VT 2005 Recruiting War Room #7
by Chris Horne, 10/19/04, 11:00 am
Since the last war room update, Virginia Tech has received commitments from Phoebus teammates Elan Lewis and Steven Friday. The Hokies have to feel good about their positioning with many recruits. Many of the targets in our latest war room have taken, set, or are seriously considering setting official visits to Tech. Now the Hokies just need to close the deal on some of these prospects.
in TSL Pass

Hokies Crack the Rankings After Long Absence
by Will Stewart, TechSideline.com, 10/18/04, 12:40 am
Virginia Tech football is back where it used to be, breaking into both the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN polls. The Hokies were ranked #23 by the AP and #22 by the coaches. The rankings end a string of 11 straight polls in which VT was unranked.
in News and Notes

Virginia Tech 62, Florida A&M 0
Hokies Mow Over Outmanned Rattlers

by Will Stewart, TechSideline.com, 10/17/04, 12:40 am
Blacksburg, VA -- Virginia Tech scored 62 points in the first 35 minutes of the game and then coasted to victory, pounding a severely overmatched Florida A&M team on the way to the Hokies' second shutout of the season. VT turned five FAMU turnovers into touchdowns, and Bryan Randall threw four first-half touchdown passes before giving way to backup Sean Glennon.
in Football

Wide Right: Randoms
by Jeff Cockey, 10/15/04, 11:45 pm
Anyone else freaked out by that Burger King commercial where the dude wakes up in the morning to find that giant, plastic-headed King guy with the permanent psychotic smile, in bed with him. FREAKS me out! Like that clown in Poltergeist. I know I am not alone here. Sleeping with the lights on tonight, for sure.
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Keys to the Season
by Raleigh Hokie, 10/15/04, 4:00 pm
The Hokies started the 2004 campaign with many questions on both sides of the ball and now at the midway point, some of those questions have been answered, while many others remain.  For this week's "Keys to the Game", let's revisit those factors on offense and defense that have been key to Tech's season to date and what to look for from each for the rest of the season.
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Gym Rat's Notebook: Hanging With the Big Boys
by Elijah Kyle, 10/15/04, 12:45 pm
After a solid recruiting effort last year that saw his program bring in the first Virginia Mr. Basketball since 1982 (Marquie Cooke), along with three other prospects, Seth Greenberg knows that there is no time to rest on the laurels from last year, and for many people it is all about what have you done for me lately.
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