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SI article on sagging attendance
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Renandpat Offline
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Post: #21
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 01:16 PM)UTEPDallas Wrote:  If we were between the ages of 18 and 22 and attending a FBS school with a good football history which option sounds better? Being in a stadium for almost four hours with bad weather which could be from high temperatures and high humidity to heavy rain and cold temperatures or go to your buddy’s place, watch the game in a 65” 4K tv with plenty of food and drinks?

This is what changed with these mega tv deals. If you’re a student at a P5 school, the games will be on tv which is something that wasn’t an option 20 years ago when I was in college. It’s also a generational thing. If you were born after 1990, chances are you’re not as passionate like your predecessors were plus nobody is talking about the big elephant in the room: student loan debt which is taking away disposable income that could go for tickets and donations.
You also forgot something fairly important. More students have to go to work.
01-10-2020 06:16 PM
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Native Georgian Online
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Post: #22
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
Interesting thread. Thanks for posting.

As the writer for SI said, “it’s complicated”. I believe there really are a lot of moving pieces here, and there’s no one single piece (or even 2 or 4 pieces) that explain the whole process.

But just overall, I’d say the increased cost (compared to 20-30-40 years ago) of attending a game is a huge factor. The convenience of watching the games at home or at a bar figures into it. How long it takes for a game to be played — carving out 2.5-to-3 hours from your weekend is not the same as carving out 4 hours. Plus traffic.

And finally, kick-off times that are geared for media’s convenience, and not for fans in the stands. Tulane and Southern Miss just kicked-off a game at 10:30am local time a few days ago. We all know about the MAC games on Tuesday/Wednesday nights. And Mountain West games that kick-off at 8pm or even 8:30pm. Sure, the die-hards will put up with it. Not many others will.
(This post was last modified: 01-10-2020 06:41 PM by Native Georgian.)
01-10-2020 06:40 PM
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Wedge Offline
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Post: #23
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 06:40 PM)Native Georgian Wrote:  And finally, kick-off times that are geared for media’s convenience, and not for fans in the stands. Tulane and Southern Miss just kicked-off a game at 10:30am local time a few days ago. We all know about the MAC games on Tuesday/Wednesday nights. And Mountain West games that kick-off at 8pm or even 8:30pm. Sure, the die-hards will put up with it. Not many others will.

Related to what I said in the bowl attendance thread: The price of the exposure and money that the TV guys provide is that TV wants to treat the stadium like a TV studio at which the entertainment is performed before a live studio audience. Whether every seat in the studio audience is filled is not their first priority.

There are four TV "windows" for college football on Saturdays. If every game was started at the time that the fans in the stands most wanted it to be started, there would be lots and lots of games in the two middle windows, fewer games in the first window, and even fewer in the fourth. The games wouldn't be distributed so as to maximize TV viewership -- but distributing the games in a way that tries to maximize TV viewership is *exactly* what the TV networks are paying for.
01-10-2020 07:49 PM
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3BNole Offline
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Post: #24
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 02:27 PM)IWokeUpLikeThis Wrote:  I think chairbacks - or at least benchbacks - are becoming a must for stadiums. People aren't willing to shell out a fortune for their back to hurt and be packed in like sardines for 4 hours.

I can deal with tv timeouts as long as cellular service allows me to check scores. Back aches and claustrophobia are far more likely to signal leaving early.

I agree 100% with this. I literally live in Tallahassee, grew up an FSU fan and am an alumnus. I only go to 1-2 games a year (regardless of how good they are) because honestly when you add in the time it takes for the game and just to get there, the uncomfortable nature of the benches, the heat (in Florida), and the cost... well it generally isn’t worth it to me, unless they’re playing someone interesting that I haven’t seen before.
01-10-2020 08:46 PM
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oliveandblue Offline
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Post: #25
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
TV ratings are up across the board. CFB is becoming a TV show.
01-10-2020 08:49 PM
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Native Georgian Online
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Post: #26
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 07:49 PM)Wedge Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 06:40 PM)Native Georgian Wrote:  And finally, kick-off times that are geared for media’s convenience, and not for fans in the stands. Tulane and Southern Miss just kicked-off a game at 10:30am local time a few days ago. We all know about the MAC games on Tuesday/Wednesday nights. And Mountain West games that kick-off at 8pm or even 8:30pm. Sure, the die-hards will put up with it. Not many others will.

Related to what I said in the bowl attendance thread: The price of the exposure and money that the TV guys provide is that TV wants to treat the stadium like a TV studio at which the entertainment is performed before a live studio audience. Whether every seat in the studio audience is filled is not their first priority.

There are four TV "windows" for college football on Saturdays. If every game was started at the time that the fans in the stands most wanted it to be started, there would be lots and lots of games in the two middle windows, fewer games in the first window, and even fewer in the fourth. The games wouldn't be distributed so as to maximize TV viewership -- but distributing the games in a way that tries to maximize TV viewership is *exactly* what the TV networks are paying for.
All true, Wedge. I’m not trying to say there’s anything mysterious about this. It’s actually kind of obvious if you stop and think about what changes have occurred.
01-10-2020 09:29 PM
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Post: #27
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
I find the number of TV timeouts, reviews and numerous other stopping of play to be a huge drawback of attending games. Games are nearly 4 hours long nowadays, and an hour-plus is nothing but sitting and waiting for the guy in the red shirt to put his arm down when the commercials are over.
01-10-2020 09:40 PM
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Post: #28
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
I dont think its rocket science

Price to go to a game (ticket, parking, eating, travel) for both students and non students have gone up. The ability and quailty of watching and following a game outside of direct stadium attendance has also gone up.

Games are now like movie attendance. You are only going to get diehards who really like going to movies and those that are willing to pay top dollar for a big blockbuster. Like the movie industry, the big games do great, as do the big budget blockbuster movies, but everything else is struggling.

There is no incentive for schools to lower prices and attract more causal fans so those that are willing to pay whatever will pay more while being rewarded with a "better" in stadium experience

Personal example: For me to take my entire family of 4 to a UNCW basketball game, it would be $60 just to get a seat

Football is even more and non diehards just cant afford it
(This post was last modified: 01-10-2020 10:04 PM by solohawks.)
01-10-2020 10:00 PM
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Post: #29
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 08:49 PM)oliveandblue Wrote:  TV ratings are up across the board. CFB is becoming a TV show.
I'd much rather watch Maryland play on TV at a beach bar/restaurant in September and October than at Maryland stadium.
(This post was last modified: 01-10-2020 10:30 PM by NJ2MDTerp.)
01-10-2020 10:29 PM
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Post: #30
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 04:24 PM)Frank the Tank Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 03:34 PM)quo vadis Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 03:04 PM)Wedge Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 02:13 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 01:37 PM)Wedge Wrote:  No, they've just found a different golden goose.

Take any P5 team you like, and compare

(A) 1979 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

with

(B) 2019 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

Pretty sure that (B) will be a much larger number for all of those programs.


So they shouldn't complain about attendance. They have traded ticket money for TV money.

Short term, great. Long term - TBD

Might as well make money from media as much as possible. The long term trend for many things is rapidly going away from "being there". Restaurants have fewer people dining in and more people taking food to go or getting delivery. Pizza chains close locations with dining rooms to focus on locations that are exclusively for take out and delivery. Even some pricey restaurants have remodeled to shrink the size of their dining rooms and focus the kitchen on efficiently processing orders placed online or over the phone for take out and delivery. Ask people in their teens and 20s, they don't want to sit in restaurants.

Watching the games on TV is the equivalent of going through a drive-thru or using DoorDash, rather than eating at the restaurant.

One exception seems to be music concerts. Major music acts seem to be able to sell out arenas and stadiums very readily these days.

It's not so much that major music acts sell out arenas and stadiums better today. The number of "current" acts that could sell out an NFL stadium or NBA arena is lower today than a few decades ago. The list of the top tours through the middle of 2019 shows a disproportionate number of musicians who became famous in the 1960s and 1970s (headed by Elton John):

https://www.pollstar.com/Chart/2019/07/2...rs_747.pdf

However, you might be perceive that there are more big music tours because there are simply more music acts touring more often today. That's a result of how the Internet fundamentally changed how musicians make money. Musicians make very little from albums and recorded music today compared to the pre-Internet era. Streaming on Spotify and other services provide some revenue, but nowhere near what the old LP and later CD delivery mechanisms provided. In contrast, musicians largely get to keep their concert revenue all to themselves (and you inherently can't "pirate" a concert on the Internet in the way that you can freely pirate music files), which means that there's a huge financial incentive for them to continue going on the road.

Up until the year 2000, musicians went on tour in order to promote their new album. Today, musicians release a new album in order to promote their tour. The financial calculus for the music industry has completed shifted over the past 20 years due to the Internet (and it honestly happened a LOT quicker than changes to the television industry).

It really is amazing how the music industry was turned on its ear once Napster hit the scene. I think because music has always been youth and technology driven that was a factor. Also in the decade prior it had become popular to DJ music with hits for parties.

Back in the 70's it was album oriented. Small parties of a few couples playing cards listening to an album. There was no such thing as even a greatest hits album. That really began with the long term contracts musicians were signed to for say 5 records and releasing a greatest hits was a way to close out the contract.

The problem with TV was data streaming over the internet wasn't fast enough for video in the 90's. That technology was slow to develop. The internet for most people was a slow experience. You certainly didn't order a pizza through the internet as is done today. Google helped to develop the concept of account management across devices which needed to develop before TV steaming across devices could happen.

The price of an unlimited cellphone calling plan was so high as late as 10 years ago that people felt compelled to keep LAN lines. Now its a $5 a month feature. Improvements to cellular services tended to be in spurts.

TV with its slower development toward streaming gave the media companies time to get ahead of the curve. If music had gone that way the major record labels would have become internet channels that you pay 9.99 for to listen to just their artists. Capital Records, Epic, Geffen just like HBO, Showtime and Starz.
01-10-2020 10:57 PM
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Post: #31
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 09:40 PM)kurtrundell Wrote:  I find the number of TV timeouts, reviews and numerous other stopping of play to be a huge drawback of attending games. Games are nearly 4 hours long nowadays, and an hour-plus is nothing but sitting and waiting for the guy in the red shirt to put his arm down when the commercials are over.

They really kill the momentum and the action. And now you have extended instant replay.

I hate it when I realize a game is an SEC network game. We spend 5 minutes learning about 3 professors who won awards in the first quarter, the women's equestrian team in the 2nd quarter, the twirlers from 20 years ago in the 3rd quarter and student research awards in the 4th. Alright, most of those twirlers still look the part. But the other 3 quarters...04-cheers
01-10-2020 11:16 PM
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Post: #32
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 04:58 PM)NIU007 Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 01:37 PM)Wedge Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 01:02 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  So the killing of the Golden Goose many predicted with high ticket prices, mandatory "donations", etc is catching up.

No, they've just found a different golden goose.

Take any P5 team you like, and compare

(A) 1979 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

with

(B) 2019 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

Pretty sure that (B) will be a much larger number for all of those programs.

I think the new golden goose is already on its last legs. It's a bump that will only temporarily hide an overall shift away from watching college football games.

Yeah these big bets like the ABC is making with the SEC are counter to the overall trends. Subscriber loss for cable. More on demand viewing.

Football doesn't lend itself well to on demand as much as what fight sports do because even if you know the result it is still interesting to see how it went down. A lot of boxing/UFC you'll miss the first time around and don't feel its important enough to check the result for but you'll tune in on demand if you're bored. Very rarely have I felt this way about a FB game that I missed.
01-10-2020 11:30 PM
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Post: #33
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 01:37 PM)Wedge Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 01:02 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  So the killing of the Golden Goose many predicted with high ticket prices, mandatory "donations", etc is catching up.

No, they've just found a different golden goose.

Take any P5 team you like, and compare

(A) 1979 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

with

(B) 2019 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

Pretty sure that (B) will be a much larger number for all of those programs.

Couple years ago went searching about for images of old ticket stubs and compared to the cost via the school at the time. I'm sure no would be surprised to learn that adjusted for inflation the cheapest ticket offered at most schools is more expensive now than in the past or that a ticket requires a greater percentage of the median household income today than in the past.

That's not even taking into account mandatory donations.

On the "positive" side, games now take about 10% longer to play so in theory getting more for your money until you realize that the longer playing time primarily comes from halftime being 5 minutes longer and longer media breaks.

On the plus side, if the fans start getting excited and start up a cheer or the band starts playing something good then someone will make sure to play a loud commercial on the video board.

The upside of the longer halftime is it gives more time to go get that $7 polish sausage and $5 Coke (for those who don't have a Pepsi contract).

Friend is an infamous tightwad who gave up buying concessions because the local convenience store chain tend to run a 2 hot dog, bag of chips, and 20oz drink for $3.99 special and that includes smoked sausage, cheddar stuffed smoked sausage, and japaleno smoked sausage at that price with about 12 or 15 more fountain drink options. So he stops there, has a quasi-tailgate in the parking lot.

I blow my money on concessions. One, a local caterer makes kick ass barbecue and has a vendor slot and two, one of the side effects of my cancer treatment is it left me with dry mouth problems so I fork out $6 for two bottles of water to get through a game, otherwise I'd be too uncomfortable to make past the first quarter.

Going to a game takes a bigger investment in money and a bigger investment in time and the game day experience has changed. The bands have been minimized, the added noise of commercials and canned music means cheerleaders are seen but not heard, they've added a dance troupe which was a staple at hoops, but they end up doing their routine during a break in an end zone so most people are further from them at a football game than the people on the last row of the upper deck at hoops.

Used to be you could take your kid to a game and see the team dressed out in a manner very similar to what you saw when your parents took you to the game. Now you won't see them outfitted the same way for any two of the six or seven home games.

In general schools took a popular entertainment outlet and changed it all up because different has to be better and maybe that will make you feel like those big price increases are worth it.
01-11-2020 02:46 AM
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Post: #34
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 04:24 PM)Frank the Tank Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 03:34 PM)quo vadis Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 03:04 PM)Wedge Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 02:13 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 01:37 PM)Wedge Wrote:  No, they've just found a different golden goose.

Take any P5 team you like, and compare

(A) 1979 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

with

(B) 2019 football ticket and game-day revenue plus media revenue

Pretty sure that (B) will be a much larger number for all of those programs.


So they shouldn't complain about attendance. They have traded ticket money for TV money.

Short term, great. Long term - TBD

Might as well make money from media as much as possible. The long term trend for many things is rapidly going away from "being there". Restaurants have fewer people dining in and more people taking food to go or getting delivery. Pizza chains close locations with dining rooms to focus on locations that are exclusively for take out and delivery. Even some pricey restaurants have remodeled to shrink the size of their dining rooms and focus the kitchen on efficiently processing orders placed online or over the phone for take out and delivery. Ask people in their teens and 20s, they don't want to sit in restaurants.

Watching the games on TV is the equivalent of going through a drive-thru or using DoorDash, rather than eating at the restaurant.

One exception seems to be music concerts. Major music acts seem to be able to sell out arenas and stadiums very readily these days.

It's not so much that major music acts sell out arenas and stadiums better today. The number of "current" acts that could sell out an NFL stadium or NBA arena is lower today than a few decades ago. The list of the top tours through the middle of 2019 shows a disproportionate number of musicians who became famous in the 1960s and 1970s (headed by Elton John):

https://www.pollstar.com/Chart/2019/07/2...rs_747.pdf

However, you might be perceive that there are more big music tours because there are simply more music acts touring more often today. That's a result of how the Internet fundamentally changed how musicians make money. Musicians make very little from albums and recorded music today compared to the pre-Internet era. Streaming on Spotify and other services provide some revenue, but nowhere near what the old LP and later CD delivery mechanisms provided. In contrast, musicians largely get to keep their concert revenue all to themselves (and you inherently can't "pirate" a concert on the Internet in the way that you can freely pirate music files), which means that there's a huge financial incentive for them to continue going on the road.

Up until the year 2000, musicians went on tour in order to promote their new album. Today, musicians release a new album in order to promote their tour. The financial calculus for the music industry has completed shifted over the past 20 years due to the Internet (and it honestly happened a LOT quicker than changes to the television industry).

There are more people who like the acts of the 1960's and 70's because there were more people in the prime of listening to new music in that time period.

1954 to 1964 there were more than 4 million births per year in the US. 1952 and 1953 had just over 3.9 million each year. We wouldn't hit 3.9 million again until 1988 and a year later topped 4 million.

People generally stop listening to new music at age 33.
https://news.avclub.com/new-study-shows-...1798279117

The Boomers primary music discovery was radio and in any community a very finite number of stations strong enough to listen to. For on demand listening your choices were jukeboxes and buying music on physical media. Jukeboxes ranged from having 24 songs to 200 with the typical machine offering 50 selections because the larger capacity machines cost a good deal more and were more of a hassle to stock and keep running. First time I used a jukebox it was one song for 10 cents or three for a quarter then went up to one for a quarter or three for 50 cents. Otherwise you had to buy singles or albums. Depending on where you lived some genres wouldn't be available to you. Unless you lived near a university, you might not have access to jazz or classical. If you didn't have a significant African-American population then no soul or blues. Live in an urban area? You might not have had access to country music. Hard rock? Forget it if you lived in a rural area.

People in that era tended to listen to the same music as a large segment of the population.

The 20th most popular act of 1970 probably had more people interested in seeing them live than the 10th most popular act of 2020 will have because listening is spread out across so many genres and sub-genres.

The most popular acts of the 1960's and 1970's in addition to having big audiences, now have audiences most likely to have the disposable income to buy concert tickets.

Delivery methods have changed how music is consumed and made it harder for an act to have a huge audience.

Likewise, Millennials and Gen Z are used to watching short-form video with pre-roll ads, and breaks for ads during the video being a rarity. Surveys still say football is their most favorite sport but not at the rate of their elders, baseball is fading hard with them and hockey just holding its own. Soccer has grown dramatically with its few stoppages only one break for ads during a halftime that is 3 minutes longer than NFL but 5 minutes shorter than college football. From first kick to final whistle will come in under 120 minutes except in tournaments where ties must be broken. Long lasting golf and NASCAR telecasts basically don't register with them.

When the audience you need to attract thinks a 30 minute broadcast "feels long" keeping them interested in a 3:30 broadcast is going to be a challenge.
01-11-2020 03:41 AM
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Post: #35
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 02:27 PM)IWokeUpLikeThis Wrote:  I think chairbacks - or at least benchbacks - are becoming a must for stadiums. People aren't willing to shell out a fortune for their back to hurt and be packed in like sardines for 4 hours.

I can deal with tv timeouts as long as cellular service allows me to check scores. Back aches and claustrophobia are far more likely to signal leaving early.
I left a couple Alabama games early because the student section was hopelessly oversold, and that was two decades ago when I was a student.
01-11-2020 09:19 AM
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Post: #36
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-10-2020 10:57 PM)Kit-Cat Wrote:  Back in the 70's it was album oriented. Small parties of a few couples playing cards listening to an album. There was no such thing as even a greatest hits album.

I would beg to differ. To my recollection, the 1970s was the decade that pretty much invented the greatest hits album, and they were often released at the artist's peak, when they were still churning out hits. The Stones (1971), The Eagles GH (1975) and Steve Miller's GH (1978) come immediately to mind. Sly and the Family Stone, Al Green, and Marvin Gaye all had GH records in the 1970s as well. Donna Summer and the Bee Gees released GH albums in 1979 when hits from their then-current studio albums were still all over the radio. There are really too many to count.

Heck, some acts released "greatest hits" in the 1970s long before they actually made their biggest hits, such as Michael Jackson (1975) and ZZ Top (1977). And some big acts released two greatest hits records that decade, such as Elton John (1974 and 1977) and John Denver (1973 and 1977).

GH records proliferated in the 1970s.
(This post was last modified: 01-11-2020 09:30 AM by quo vadis.)
01-11-2020 09:28 AM
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Post: #37
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
Even before the 70’s, there were compilation albums made up of singles and B-sides, which is essentially a greatest hits album.

Anyhow, does anybody think the decrease in attendance has to do with weekday games, including Friday? That could simultaneously boost TV ratings and hurt attendance.
(This post was last modified: 01-11-2020 09:42 AM by esayem.)
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Post: #38
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-11-2020 09:28 AM)quo vadis Wrote:  
(01-10-2020 10:57 PM)Kit-Cat Wrote:  Back in the 70's it was album oriented. Small parties of a few couples playing cards listening to an album. There was no such thing as even a greatest hits album.

I would beg to differ. To my recollection, the 1970s was the decade that pretty much invented the greatest hits album, and they were often released at the artist's peak, when they were still churning out hits. The Stones (1971), The Eagles GH (1975) and Steve Miller's GH (1978) come immediately to mind. Sly and the Family Stone, Al Green, and Marvin Gaye all had GH records in the 1970s as well. Donna Summer and the Bee Gees released GH albums in 1979 when hits from their then-current studio albums were still all over the radio. There are really too many to count.

Heck, some acts released "greatest hits" in the 1970s long before they actually made their biggest hits, such as Michael Jackson (1975) and ZZ Top (1977). And some big acts released two greatest hits records that decade, such as Elton John (1974 and 1977) and John Denver (1973 and 1977).

GH records proliferated in the 1970s.


The Beach Boys probably benefited the most from a GH album. They released some very well received albums early in the decade, but it wasn't until Endless Summer was released in 1974 that they put themselves back on the map. They suddenly became one of the biggest touring acts in the country for the rest of the decade.

The band actually released it's first greatest hits album in 1966, and it didn't include Good Vibrations or anything from Pet Sounds.
01-11-2020 10:38 AM
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Post: #39
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
(01-11-2020 10:38 AM)The Big O Wrote:  The Beach Boys probably benefited the most from a GH album. They released some very well received albums early in the decade, but it wasn't until Endless Summer was released in 1974 that they put themselves back on the map. They suddenly became one of the biggest touring acts in the country for the rest of the decade.

That's the way it was with me. I was 10 years old in 1975 so wasn't around when they had all those hits in the mid-1960s. But I remember getting "Endless Summer", I recall buying it not in a record store but off a TV advertisement, like K-Tel used to do.

After much begging my mom sent off for it for me and I remember waiting weeks with anticipation until it finally arrived in the mail, COD, LOL.
(This post was last modified: 01-11-2020 11:07 AM by quo vadis.)
01-11-2020 11:06 AM
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usffan Offline
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Post: #40
RE: SI article on sagging attendance
Thanks - this has been an enjoyable thread to read, and I found myself a number of times agreeing out loud with what people wrote. I've used many of these same arguments to refute those who keep insisting that my alma mater (USF) needs to build an on campus stadium, since spending that kind of money on something that is undergoing such a drastic change would be folly.

One thing that I didn't see anybody mention was that another thing that has contributed to this has been schools/conferences being willing to hold kickoff times hostage for the "flex window" of broadcasting. It's hard to convince people to plan to attend a game when they don't know what time the game's going to kickoff until 13 (or, in many cases, 6) days beforehand. It dramatically impacts travel plans as well as other life events.

In many ways, we're seeing college football follow the path that MLB went down when RSN's first got full broadcast rights to games (especially home games). MLB is still making big money, but it's because of broadcasting, not because of people in the stands. For that matter, the same is becoming true of the NFL.

USFFan
01-11-2020 11:20 AM
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