Dear Mr. Yeager,
I’m writing today regarding an idea I’ve shared in jest with your second-in-command, the lovely and talented Ron Bertovich. However please consider this an official proposal into your office. I will gladly spend additional time and buy lunch should you desire more detail.
The concept is as simple as it is ground-breaking: The CAA Basketball New Year’s Bash.
Here’s the deal: the 18-game CAA schedule is daunting for many reasons, not the least of which is sheer logistics. You know as well as I do that the coaches hate the four-in-eight sprints, and that nagging December game.
Let’s alleviate that issue by playing a two games in four days, a season opening hoopapalooza that bridges New Year’s Eve. It brings every CAA team to a single venue to play its first two conference games, together.
Imagine the press. Imagine the parties! Imagine a quiet phone without coaches asking you to find a way around the four-in-eight.
Nobody has done this, and I think it’s high time we broke the mold in terms of scheduling. Look, the Dalai Lama spoke of impermanence a couple weeks ago on his visit to the United States. His lesson was that everything eventually changes in some form. College basketball is not immune to these forces. Who said scheduling has to be a straight SAT-WED-SAT format?
Groundbreaking, I tell you.
We’ll make it fair for the schools. Each team “gives up” one home and one away game. For fun, when the schedule is completed, take the December game and the Monday game in the four game week and put them in our event.
I know the ADs would lament the loss of a home game and its revenue, but let’s look at this from a practical perspective. Each school can offer its alumni and fans parties and events, growing their bases. The revenue from one game versus entrenching your alumni with a boondoggle holiday weekend where alums can entertain their own clients? Zillmer, Roby, and Selig have “Dr.” in their titles, and Teague and Bass surely understand the value of good money. Waddell is a marketing guy for crying out loud. I bet he’s on board within five minutes.
Heck, you can have some sort of recognition event for sponsors, and can you imagine the New Year’s Eve Party!?! You could even award the football champion its trophy at one of the parties (unless it’s, who currently plays in the Big East Conference. For now.)
But you win in other areas, too.
Let’s put the event into put an end, once and for all, to all this southern bias nonsense. Don’t you think Bill Coen would be extremely happy heading to Philly in late December instead of the Cable Car Classic?
The market will help with sponsorships. Atlantic City is struggling–what better opportunity than access to busloads of basketball fans? And there’s Comcast being somewhat based in Philly and all, but imagine the new opportunities with banks and other organizations with more money than brains. I could use a good cheesesteak at the CAA Bash. (Note to DACPack: isn’t Abner’s the best? Or worst?)
I will lend my significant sales weight to the cause. After all, since beginning CAAHoops in 2005 I’ve raked in enough sponsor dollars to finance last night’s Stella. Can you name another CAA basketball blog with that kind of revenue producing ability?
Speaking of Comcast, I know teevee rules the roost, but surely we can find a partner. As mentioned, Philly means Comcast. While it may be heresy on Patterson Avenue, we could surely trade a couple women’s games to get this, no? If not, ESPN3 is beginning to swell.
But here’s that answer: put a VCU/Mason matchup–you know, two Final Four teams–behind Drexel/Delaware for the marquee matchups. It helps embed Drexel in its own city and there’s the YouDee rivalry.
Surely a festive college basketball event trumps the Meineke Car Care Bowl any day. And ESPN somehow televised the GoDaddy.com Bowl last year, a scintillating matchup between Miami (OH) and Middle Tennessee. Really?
But all that pales in comparison to this: who else has done this?
We always hear the national guys bandy about the need for a “season opening event.” This is that deal, only better. It sets the CAA apart as willing to be experimental, to go a different route to engage its fan base like nobody else has done. So you’re tweeting nowadays. Big deal. As odd as this sounds, there’s nothing groundbreaking about Twitter anymore. It holds nothing to a four day EVENT.
Look, you’ve led this conference for about 348 years in a very distinguished manner. What better legacy to leave before you boat into thatfrom which it’s all vacation than to leave your successor in a position of buzzworthy?
I mean, you have more Final Four teams in the past five years than the Big 12. You going to let Beebe beat you to this idea?
So let’s recap:
- Each team plays two games in Philly, one designated as home and one as away.
- Lots of parties and celebration.
- Nobody has done this.
- Solidifies your legacy.
- Cures scheduling ills (zipping up coaches traps)
- More sponsor dollars, more teevee
I close with a statement I mean with all due respect to your tenure and accomplishments, which are unassailable: I need you to sell me on how this is not a good idea, as opposed to me selling you on its merits.
I’m just sayin’.