Television ratings are all that matter to Pro Bowl


POSTED: Wednesday, March 03, 2010

At first I was surprised ... for about 2 seconds. Then I remembered.

It's all about the ratings. It's all about TV.

The NFL is staging the Pro Bowl before the Super Bowl once again for just one reason: When it did so for the first time this past season, viewership increased by 40 percent.

One of the highlights of the Pro Bowl experience in Hawaii was always the stars from the winning Super Bowl team arriving joyous and bleary-eyed during the middle of the week, having just been feted with a parade in their home city. No more of that, at least this time.

Most of us in Hawaii would like the Pro Bowl after the Super Bowl, not before it. It takes a lot of the allure out of the all-star game when it's missing the guys from the two best teams.

I guess we're supposed to be grateful we've got the game back at all.

Here's the positive of the situation for Hawaii: If the ratings are good again, that means added exposure for the islands during a time of frigid weather on the mainland. Free advertising (well, not really free, since funds from state tourism taxes pays $4 million in rights fees annually for the Pro Bowl in 2011 and 2012).

» Chad Ochocinco gets Ochenta y seis'd from Dancing With The Stars early on, unless Darrelle Revis is his partner. Judging from the Bengals-Jets games last season, the uber corner has 85's every move memorized.

As for the rest of the lineup, wow. Pam Anderson, Erin Andrews, Shannen Doherty and Honolulu-born part-Hawaiian Nicole Scherzinger. Make that quadruple wow. Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin must have gotten the invite for his experience around heavenly bodies.

» Early impressions of UH baseball:

Young arms coming along well. Pi'ikea Kitamura is smooth at third base and off to a decent start hitting as a freshman.

I really can't remember a more consistent defensive shortstop than Greg Garcia — which is interesting when you consider how wildly streaky he is as a hitter.

Team defense is good, but team baserunning still needs improvement.

» The Daniel Smith vs. University of Hawaii case will likely turn out to be a whole lot of nothing — unless a judge decides the entire system of college sports recruiting is messed up; then it could revolutionize the way schools procure student-athletes.

Smith is the football player who accused UH of rescinding a scholarship offer; something which is done on a regular basis by many schools.

Smith ended up at Portland State. His family contends he turned down other Division I opportunities because he thought his offer at UH was solid. UH coaches were deposed in the matter recently.

» My favorite quotes from last night's inductees to the Hawaii Sports Hall of Fame:

Waterman Richard “;Buffalo”; Keaulana, King of Makaha: “;Thank you for all the lei. I feel like one horse.”;

LGPA Tour winner Lenore Muraoka Rittenhouse, who was going to play basketball at UH before an injury: “;When I was a kid I wanted to throw a baseball like Sandy Koufax or shoot a basketball like Pete Maravich. My real shot came when I broke my foot.”;


Reach Star-Bulletin sports columnist Dave Reardon at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), his “;Quick Reads”; blog at, and