The visionaries have thrown in the towel.
If I had $35M to lose and lost it, I guess I would throw in the towel as well. I've pissed away $3500 dollars in my life, and I still feel lousy about it.
In their respective sendoffs, NBC "higher-up" Dick Ebersol and WWFE CEO Vince McMahon, Jr. had nothing but complimentary things to say about each other. Both NBC and WWFE should feel comfortable that their monetary losses will be shared between the large corporations.
The great philosophers, Albert Einstein and Jesus Christ were all scoffed at for having something to offer that was so great, that they were treated with skepticism and scoffing by people too stuck in their tradition to try something new. The XFL tried to innovate, but encountered skepticism and negativity from media that had a vested interest in the NFL. How would this media have covered the NFL when it first hit the scene? Possibly with a lot of skepticism and negativity. It is pathetic to hear sports talk radio hosts regurgitate over the airwaves any edict ESPN lays on their audio-visual mantle, rather than actually watch the games an form an opinion for themselves.
With a low salary cap, this league still encountered losses of $35M. The XFL will not sue the NFL for impeding their progress. Maybe this league should sue ESPN, Fox and Sporting News Radio. The damage has already been done, and the WWF never gets press unless it's negative press. To me, if you can't cover something positively and negatively, then don't bother covering it at all! If there is a law suit, it won't work unless both NBC and WWFE team up in the litigation.
It is safe to say that this may NOT be my last rant. I intend to maintain this site as a tribute site. To the webmaster of the USFL site: If you don't want to run your site anymore, I am interested in being the webmaster. email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(BTW, he is still running his site.)
"I dare you to knock this battery off my shoulder!"
Famous words during late 70s/early 80s pop culture uttered by Robert Conrad, star of NBC's "Baa Baa Black Sheep". The famous quote was actually during a commercial for Eveready batteries.
I liken Vince McMahon to Conrad. The fact that he bucked a tradition by starting his own football league whose game premise is a lot more exciting than the NFL. Then holders of membership in the good-ole-boys club, ABC/ESPN have looked at the league as merely a threat to their own interests, as preferred to something to cover without bias.
ESPN, ABC and even 1wrestling.com have reported on the doom and gloom of the XFL ratings situation on NBC. NBC had a coup de gras in week 1 with a double-digit rating, but since they've averaged a two. TNN and UPN go between 0.5 and 1.0.
ESPN is a top ten cable network with an overall 1.4 rating. It doesn't make sense for ESPN to throw stones at the XFL with their own ratings below what the XFL does in prime time.
Don't get me wrong, NBC's numbers are bad considering the playing field of prime time network television. I would prefer a move of the telecast to Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. ET, where their ratings could actaully increase. If the rating is in the 2.5-3.2 range, that is a good rating for that time slot, even though not even half of CBS' 7.8 for "The Masters" over the weekend (Last year, it was a 5.9). Let's face it, the XFL's target demo may be home on Monday night, but not Saturday.
The league needs hype, why not an XFL pre-game show. The best thing about the NFL is usually FOX NFL Sunday. The XFL could do a show that could top it. Have a live studio audience. If everyone who watches the show sees the hype for teams and players in an environment in addition to the WWF and XFL games themselves, it would add credibility and word-of-mouth for the league.
I don't see major problems with the announcing. What some of these guys don't have in announcing skills they make up for in being straight shooters on the game. "JR" Jim Ross has actually done football before (Atlanta Falcons radio) and he is the best play-by-play guy the league has, yet has been relegated to the Saturday night "B" game, because of his association with the WWF. That is sad that Vince caved into pressure. It's the typical "amount of fans vs. advertiser demands" tug of war. I worked with it in small market radio and it sucks. But being studio host would be the perfect vehicle for JR to show his credibility in balancing his knowledge of football and sports entertainment.
As far as the other announcers are concerned, I like the pairing of Chris Marlowe and Brian Bosworth. They make the UPN broadcast entertaining.
Give Mike Adamle the promotion to main "A" play-by-play guy with Ventura. He's good on the sidelines and brings a lot of enthusiasm, but in the role he's in now, he takes away Jesse Ventura and that is not good. Let Ventura shoot more, when he speaks his mind, he the exact definition of what an XFL color guy is supposed to be, whether we agree with him or not!
What would your suggestions be on who should be in an "XFL Today" show with "JR"?