Paying to ride the bandwagon
WHEN the list first came out, before this UH football season started, it was a little bit of a surprise. At New Mexico State (which just happens to be today's game)? On pay-per-view?
Well, now we see the strategy, the genius behind it all. It was a brilliant gamble. If Hawaii did well at Fresno State (and, at 68-37, at Fresno State, "well" is an understatement), then you'd surely get a few new walk-up, special-order customers who otherwise wouldn't have ordered the next game on pay-per-view. Brilliant.
If you look at it another way, though, I don't know if this was the best move.
Yes, with two big wins in a row, this team is starting to get a little momentum, has a shot to build a bandwagon buzz.
But -- sound of tires screeching -- this game isn't on free TV?
I'm not usually one to bash pay-per-view when it comes to hurting attendance because PPV was created in part to get something from those who weren't coming out to the game anyway (and pay-per-view is dropping, too).
But in the '80s UH built up its base and its buzz with free TV. It could have done the same today. UH needs to do everything it can, today.
Hey, Idaho comes to town next, and say what you will about the marquee value of Dennis Erickson (and the Vandals being in first place in the Western Athletic Conference standings heading into today's game, holy cow!), it's still Idaho. Idaho is generally not thought of as the kind of name brand that can get the gate over the big 3-0.
Attendance thus far this season has been -- well, what's a nice way of putting it? But all along people have been saying, "We'll see what it looks like if they come back 5-2." That would happen if UH wins today.
Winning certainly helps, but if winning were enough, people never would have left.
It's a delicate thing trying to bring back the fans. Every little thing counts.
Yes, win today and there'll be some bandwagon bounce. But now, just when momentum may be building, this game isn't live on KFVE. It's on pay-per-view.
Now, I know there's nothing they could have really done at this point in time -- these schedules are set months in advance. And yes, you'll get the free replay at 9:30 p.m. That's true. But this is bad timing. This is like when a team is starting to get rolling, and someone calls timeout. And everybody sits back down.
If the people are going to come back to Aloha Stadium, you need to show them why they should be excited about this team. This is a delicate process. If you're selling tickets next week you want as many people as possible watching this game today.