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More Wrestling Media Coverage But,

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Only wrestling fans tune in. Nonwrestling sports fans have no clue and don’t know the difference between Zain and a pain.

 

We have to do everything we can to get marquee events on ESPN and NBC Sports, where they are accessible to everyone, instead of Flo, where only the die-hards pay for subscriptions. Start there!

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I'd be curious as to how many subscribers Flo has?  They offer a lot of content and constantly change it up.  Anyone have any ideas?

 

you'll never see a number.  not at least until the number even begins to justify the fact that they say they are going to "take on ESPN" right now they are so far from that if they actually told us how many subscribers they had, we'd laugh.

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We have to do everything we can to get marquee events on ESPN and NBC Sports, where they are accessible to everyone, instead of Flo, where only the die-hards pay for subscriptions. Start there!

FLO pays money for rights.  ESPN pays nothing and airs events as part of their NCAA championship deal.  So wrestling gets nothing but exposure when ESPN airs the NCAA tournament.  

 

If ESPN wants to pay for other media rights then I am all for them airing stuff.  If they want stuff free (the only way they've wanted wrestling) then it helps nobody in wrestling.  If NBC Sports wants to air more and pay for more media rights than they already have, that would be awesome.  

 

Wrestling has missed the boat on being a mainstream sport.  The sports market place is extremely crowded and nothing about our sport is going to force it's way into the national consciousness.   At this point the sport has a greater chance to survive by monetizing it's core than it does by growing into new markets.  The modern media is so widespread and allows for so much niche success via the internet, that if wrestling could monetize the half million or so fans it has, that would be way more valuable then dreaming of growing new fans from the non-wrestling world.

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brilliant observation.

 

so what do we do to change it?

You get a half dozen or more friends who are wrestling fans and start calling in to the sports talk shows and sports news shows and ask questions about wrestling. If you can vary the callers it will help as then it won't be "you same few guys", but more fans looking for discussion and coverage.

 

When visiting the show sponsors start mentioning any wrestling coverage that you heard. Word does filter back and if a sponsor gets customers because of discussion topics they will look for more of it.

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You get a half dozen or more friends who are wrestling fans and start calling in to the sports talk shows and sports news shows and ask questions about wrestling. If you can vary the callers it will help as then it won't be "you same few guys", but more fans looking for discussion and coverage.

 

When visiting the show sponsors start mentioning any wrestling coverage that you heard. Word does filter back and if a sponsor gets customers because of discussion topics they will look for more of it.

Oh, if only I didn't live in the college wrestling backwater of south Florida.

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More colleges opening/re opening programs will help. This is happening, but it needs to happen more on the D1 level. 

 

Duals do need to be a bigger deal. For the "casual" viewer this is the only way to go. I do not have the answer for this, but I am glad coaches/ wrestling admin understand that and are searching for he solution. 

 

I will get **** for this one, and that's okay. But I am a firm believer that switching to the two piece uniform (The compression top, and "fight" shorts) would help from the standpoint of increasing casual viewership. I get that not everyone sees it that way, and that's fine but I think it's something that could help as far as viewership goes. 

 

Changing the days of big duals could help as well. 

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NCAA wrestling needs to be marketed directly to MMA viewers.  Regardless of the stigma that some around here place on it, the MMA fan base is massive, and they're the most readily transferable potential viewers by a mile.  They have a basic understanding of the sport, and the UFC roster is littered with former AA's.  Give them a reason to watch, and an easily accessible platform (i.e. one of ESPN's secondary channels), and we might see some results. The Penn State / Ohio State dynamic this year is a good place to start.  Call it the NCAA tournament of the century... or the battle of two juggernauts... whatever, just get it out there.  

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I don't post here much, but to the topic:

 

I'm a BTS-Philly alum, and I wrote this article over the summer covering the changes coming in Women's Wrestling. The move from the West Coast to the Northeast is really helping out programs and it's been cool to watch and be a part of!

 

https://victorypress.org/2017/07/14/womens-wrestling-is-changing-wrestling-for-everyone/

 

I pitched this to Victory Press, which currently had no other amateur wrestling coverage going on, and surprisingly it was circulated quite a bit through. Not viral or anything, but enough to show that people outside of the wrestling community cares. When I'm out of school I'll be looking to do more free lance coverage of wrestling.

 

Maybe wrestling journalists, myself included, should be a bit more intersectional in their approach. Stuff like Flo does is amazing -- wrestling is cool and all, but it isn't what the wrestlers are doing that can bring everyone else in, it's who the wrestlers are. Non-football players are diving into coverage all the time because people know who the players are. I'm currently looking for a media outlet to pick me up on covering the PSU wrestling season this year by documenting what goes on outside of the dual meets and tournaments. Should be f*n!

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NCAA wrestling needs to be marketed directly to MMA viewers.  Regardless of the stigma that some around here place on it, the MMA fan base is massive, and they're the most readily transferable potential viewers by a mile.  They have a basic understanding of the sport, and the UFC roster is littered with former AA's.  Give them a reason to watch, and an easily accessible platform (i.e. one of ESPN's secondary channels), and we might see some results. The Penn State / Ohio State dynamic this year is a good place to start.  Call it the NCAA tournament of the century... or the battle of two juggernauts... whatever, just get it out there.  

  • Cain Velasquez - 877k followers
  • Chael Sonnen - 806.5k followers
  • Daniel Cormier - 509.6k followers
  • Jonny Hendricks - 284.4k followers
  • TJ Dillashaw - 178.5k followers
  • Stipe Miocic - 123.5k followers

If we can get these guys tweeting and talking about wrestling more, it can only help.  

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  • Cain Velasquez - 877k followers
  • Chael Sonnen - 806.5k followers
  • Daniel Cormier - 509.6k followers
  • Jonny Hendricks - 284.4k followers
  • TJ Dillashaw - 178.5k followers
  • Stipe Miocic - 123.5k followers

If we can get these guys tweeting and talking about wrestling more, it can only help.  

 

Yes and Yes.  

 

Yes pitch it to MMA viewers.  Yes have guys like these pitch it.  I'd add another.  Ask/Bribe/beg the big MMA journalists to come to NCAAs or a few other big duals.  Give them the red carpet treatment.  Send the journalists around backstage at OSU with Cormier, at ASU with Velasquez, at PSU with Davis, etc...  Get them all around Kyle Snyder.  Take them to a Jordan Burroughs match in Iran.  Those guys have a huge media reach compared to most wrestling journalists.  

 

Basically, while we are never going to break into the mainstream media to a major degree, we have a chance to expand our niche into an adjacent and much larger niche.  

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Only wrestling fans tune in. Nonwrestling sports fans have no clue and don’t know the difference between Zain and a pain.

 

I am a very avid wrestling fan and after watching the 149lber from PSU wrestle I dont think i know the difference between zain and pain...those two words are synonymous now. 

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More colleges opening/re opening programs will help. This is happening, but it needs to happen more on the D1 level. 

 

Duals do need to be a bigger deal. For the "casual" viewer this is the only way to go. I do not have the answer for this, but I am glad coaches/ wrestling admin understand that and are searching for he solution. 

 

I will get **** for this one, and that's okay. But I am a firm believer that switching to the two piece uniform (The compression top, and "fight" shorts) would help from the standpoint of increasing casual viewership. I get that not everyone sees it that way, and that's fine but I think it's something that could help as far as viewership goes. 

 

Changing the days of big duals could help as well. 

 

I've been, and remain, pretty indifferent about going to compression tops and fight shorts vs singlets, but I don't see how that would impact viewing numbers.  It isn't like there is a huge audience for no gi grappling, which already has that as a default uniform, that wrestling would be tapping in to.

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I've been, and remain, pretty indifferent about going to compression tops and fight shorts vs singlets, but I don't see how that would impact viewing numbers.  It isn't like there is a huge audience for no gi grappling, which already has that as a default uniform, that wrestling would be tapping in to.

 

I get what youre saying/where you're coming from. I guess my point is more of, it could only help, I'm not under any illusion that it would have a huge impact, but Its not like the uniform changing would hurt viewership numbers. I dont know, leave it the same for all I care (as far as myself watching goes), I'm watching either way, hah.   

Edited by iGranby

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Part of it is, we make no effort to connect our past with the modern.  I believe the industrial sports complex could give us about 30 seconds a night of highlights, and video clips of scoring highlights from the day/week.  Showing primarily scoring techniques that expose what amazing athletes these guys are...one minute at a time, we could educate the former wrestlers that have gotten away from the sport, the new rules and techniques, and present the changes as a positive. In fact those intricate scoring secrets in wrestling could be easily explained over a longer period of time.  Many former wrestlers have absolutely no idea the amazing technique and strategies they are watching now.  Most think these guys don't know how to shoot a double or single or how to get away or even stay off their belly.  If I hadn't stayed with the sport all these years, I would hate some of what I've grown to love.

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Part of it is, we make no effort to connect our past with the modern.  I believe the industrial sports complex could give us about 30 seconds a night of highlights, and video clips of scoring highlights from the day/week.  Showing primarily scoring techniques that expose what amazing athletes these guys are...one minute at a time, we could educate the former wrestlers that have gotten away from the sport, the new rules and techniques, and present the changes as a positive. In fact those intricate scoring secrets in wrestling could be easily explained over a longer period of time.  Many former wrestlers have absolutely no idea the amazing technique and strategies they are watching now.  Most think these guys don't know how to shoot a double or single or how to get away or even stay off their belly.  If I hadn't stayed with the sport all these years, I would hate some of what I've grown to love.

 

Highlight driven sports television is a dying breed.  The vast majority of sports highlights today are digested on social media platforms like Twitter, Reddit, YouTube, etc. If we're making a concerted effort anywhere, it should be there.  Flo does a decent job on social media, but the vast majority of their content is (understandably) designed to direct you to their website.  That's all good and well, but not really conducive to propelling the discussion and getting more eyeballs on it.  

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Highlight driven sports television is a dying breed.  The vast majority of sports highlights today are digested on social media platforms like Twitter, Reddit, YouTube, etc. If we're making a concerted effort anywhere, it should be there.  Flo does a decent job on social media, but the vast majority of their content is (understandably) designed to direct you to their website.  That's all good and well, but not really conducive to propelling the discussion and getting more eyeballs on it.  

Yep.  TV deals have peaked/are peaking, and in a decade they'll be declining.  Cable cords are being cut and TV is not where sports are going.  All the sports that rely on TV are already trying to shift an eye towards online pay broadcast so they can survive what's coming.  

 

The NFL is already banning teams from using their own highlights on social media because they want to own the social media rights as a league.  

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