On Tuesday Brian Kelly told the media that he and AD Jack Swarbrick had talked to NBC about its TV timeouts in relation to Notre Dame’s fast paced offense it will be running. By Tuesday night, reports surfaced that NBC would be altering it’s timeout structure for all Notre Dame home games.
Here’s what Kelly had to say about NBC a his style of play.
Certainly we’ve talked to NBC about the way we like to play the game versus how it was played in the past. Those conversations have taken place. There’s certainly a need for us to address it and I think we’re working with NBC to make certain that they get what they need from an advertising standpoint, but also, as the network that carries Notre Dame, that we’re able to do things as well.
The model out there has been ABC/ESPN for college football just because of the sheer volume of games they carry. There’s a model out there. All we’ve tried to do is address the model that we think would work well with us and there’s got to be a meeting somewhere halfway. I’m very confident we’re going to be able to do the things we want to do in terms of pushing the tempo without having to go to a commercial break.
That conversation’s taken place. Getting into the specifics, I’m not willing to do that, but I can tell you that that conversation between Jack (Swarbrick) and myself from Notre Dame along with the production people at NBC has taken place and I think we’re going to be able to meet somewhere in the middle.
According to USA Today, NBC listened and has decided to use the same ad model they use for their NFL games.
For this season’s Notre Dame game telecasts, NBC will switch to the NFL TV model of five shorter commercial breaks per quarter rather than four longer commercial breaks.
The total amount of advertising time will be the same. But the shorter breaks will run about 1 minute, 45 seconds this season compared to 2:30 last season.
“Over the years, we have reassessed the structure of our commercial breaks numerous times to improve the experience for our viewers and the fans in the stadium,” said NBC Sports spokesman Chris McCloskey in a statement Tuesday. “The commercial load this year will be identical to last year. The slight change to the commercial structure is the result of a number of factors done to improve the broadcast, not one single reason.”
Anyone who’s watched a Notre Dame game on NBC in the last few years knows how painful it is to sit through all of the commercials. Many times the afternoon games on ABC/ESPN that start later than Notre Dame games finish up about the same time or before.
Aside from going against the style of play Brian Kelly plans on installing, the long TV timeouts also really suck the life out of the crowd at times. Without video screens or a jumbotron of any kind, it’s tough to keep everyone’s attention during a two and a half minute break in the action. That long of break might not seem like much, but when there’s four of them every quarter, it adds up.
We’ll find out soon enough if the shorter breaks help the game atmosphere inside the stadium on gamedays, but if nothing else, it shows the attention to detail Kelly has had since coming to Notre Dame.