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tec87

Finals Format Change

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I liken it to the "TV timeout" in other sports. It may not be the sport in it's purest form since I can't imagine football was designed to be played over 3-4 hours, but it's necessary for viewership. I know I'm old as dirt but we wrestled the first ever same-day tape delay finals on ESPN in 2000. It was a big deal, and we started the medal rounds at like 8:00am and the finals at 2:00pm in order to get the finals on the same day (ESPN2, not ESPN, at like 6:00pm). Was it ideal? No. In fact, it sucked. But just think if that hadn't been done; if no one had ever tested the waters to push the envelope and increase awareness of this event. Now, we have every dang session covered live, including the finals in primetime, and ESPN making suggestions as to how to make it better!!!

 

And for the guy who thinks this isn't going to affect ESPN viewership, I guess I've never seen people leave the arena/turn off the TV before the HWTS finish. Oh wait, I've done that myself.

 

There's ideality and then there's reality, and they often conflict.

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As a competitor, this would've bothered me.

As a TWO TIME NCAA DI finalist, it doesn't look like it would have bothered Tirapell (Adam Tirapelle).

 

I respect Adam Tirapelle's wrestling achievements, but if he's a big fan of Duck Dynasty, I don't immediately head home to dvr it.

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As a competitor, this would've bothered me.

As a TWO TIME NCAA DI finalist, it doesn't look like it would have bothered Tirapell (Adam Tirapelle).

 

I respect Adam Tirapelle's wrestling achievements, but if he's a big fan of Duck Dynasty, I don't immediately head home to dvr it.

 

Rest assured, I'm not a fan. :D

 

Guys, I post here as a fan, not as someone above the fray. Take my experience for what it's worth. But I sincerely believe in growing the sport and stepping outside the box when necessary. Anything that increases the sport's awareness and potentially popularity has to be a pretty awful idea to not at least attempt once.

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Great idea but it seems premature to announce it before the tournament. I know it's very unlikely that Dake gets knocked off before the final but what if he does? Why couldn't the announcement wait until after the semis?

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Because now we have two weeks to anticipate this match up and possibly quit complaining about it long enough to tell some of your friends, since it seems a ton of fans will be shut out of the tournament in person, what about actually (I cannot believe I am suggesting this) going to a social event, or a bar like Buffalo Wild Wings, and when Duke is routing IUPUI you slip the bar tender a cool Dollar Bill to put the main screen on the NCAA finals.

 

This is plenty of time to get a lot of hype machines going, and in reality those of us that will not be in Iowa have a chance to make an impact.

 

Or we can complain and ask why.

 

I will not turn the tides, but if ESPN doesn't muck this up there is plenty of time to craft a story line heading into the finals.

 

Dake and Taylor's Friendship, the rivalry, the history, the questionable calls at the Scuffle, the pressure of Taylor holding it together and overcome Dake and possibly propelling PSU to a 3rd straight title.

 

If I am in charge of programming for the NCAA tournament I had John Irving writing about this last night and have a published piece ready to go by THIS weekend.

 

Or we can complain and ask why. And yes I am well aware I wrote this twice.

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Tirepell, you might see yourself as being "not above the fray", but it is very comforting that I am not the only one who has turned the TV off before the HWT finals are finished. And it's even more comforting to know that other person was a 2x NCAA D1 finalist.

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I'm not "asking why"... I'm saying it's not a good idea.

Trust me, if there's ever a chance to increase wrestling's popularity, I'm all for it, but not at the expense of years of tradition and disrespecting 18 of our country's best wrestlers.

 

This isn't anywhere near a "tv timeout"

 

I understand tirapelle's position, I'm very qualified in making my comments too.

 

I would love to hear how telling someone about Kyle Dake and David Taylor is going to make them a fan and they will rush home to set their DVR-- no, not gonna happen. I've tried this on my wife, she doesn't care, she will tolerate it and wouldn't notice the matches were out of order. This little stunt will not raise the ratings a bit. Why weren't these same fans tipping the bartender every other year to turn it to ESPN for the finals?

 

Who would notice is the same fans that will be watching anyway. How bout the other 31 165#'s ? Ya this is a perfect message to send to everyone, Dake Taylor above all else.

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I'm not "asking why"... I'm saying it's not a good idea.

Trust me, if there's ever a chance to increase wrestling's popularity, I'm all for it, but not at the expense of years of tradition and disrespecting 18 of our country's best wrestlers.

 

This isn't anywhere near a "tv timeout"

 

I understand tirapelle's position, I'm very qualified in making my comments too.

 

I would love to hear how telling someone about Kyle Dake and David Taylor is going to make them a fan and they will rush home to set their DVR-- no, not gonna happen. I've tried this on my wife, she doesn't care, she will tolerate it and wouldn't notice the matches were out of order. This little stunt will not raise the ratings a bit. Why weren't these same fans tipping the bartender every other year to turn it to ESPN for the finals?

 

Who would notice is the same fans that will be watching anyway. How bout the other 31 165#'s ? Ya this is a perfect message to send to everyone, Dake Taylor above all else.

You are missing the point, at least partly. This isn't disrespecting anybody, in fact some weights like heavy and 197 will benefit from people not changing the channel. To me this is more about Dake than Taylor also. If there is a story, it's going to be of a senior going to accomplish what nobody else has. With a great wrestler standing in his way.

No disrespect, the other weights just don't have that story. There are others, just not as good imo.

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Tirepell, you might see yourself as being "not above the fray", but it is very comforting that I am not the only one who has turned the TV off before the HWT finals are finished. And it's even more comforting to know that other person was a 2x NCAA D1 finalist.

Other than Kerry McCoy's finals, I think I've seen one heavyweight title match to completion and that was Konrad/Mocco.

 

I can't remember why I didn't see Konrad/Anspach.

 

I think it's because I turned away for a second and then it was over :D

 

As a Penn Stater, the only time I'll make a concerted effort to watch the heavies is if a Nittany Lion is in the match. And sometimes that doesn't even help.

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The fact that Semis are Friday night allows for more media "hype" around matches in the finals because the media can take hold of a big story (with more time to prepare something) and maybe just maybe more people watch and in regards Dake Taylor if it happens is as big as it gets this year. Changing it around seems to be fine in this regard. In fact, I think naming th finals in an order of best finals is perfectly OK as well. At the Doc Buchannan you guys do this right Tirapell? I had my team there a couple of years back and it made for great finals. I know HS is not college but this highlights certain matches and can also make it more exciting if you choose the finals in order and team points are taken into consideration. That makes for higher ratings and those ratings make for more TV in the future possibly which is good for the sport. I remember waiting for the Joey Davis v Nevells (sp?) final that year as my kid wrestled in the middle. I think it is a good thing and a change that is not overly drastic. Not an expert just my two cents. I think this is wrestling making a small change to try and do more for the sport. We could see ratings be the same...I suppose we will wait and see.

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Is the uproar because the format is being changed, or because it's being announced this far in advance?

 

I don't have a problem with it, but perhaps it would have been better to wait until Friday night after the finals matchups were decided to make the announcement.

 

And if you do wait until Friday night, why not go nuts and decide on a specific order for all 10, taking into account matchups, storylines, and team race?

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I'm not "asking why"... I'm saying it's not a good idea.

Trust me, if there's ever a chance to increase wrestling's popularity, I'm all for it, but not at the expense of years of tradition and disrespecting 18 of our country's best wrestlers.

 

This isn't anywhere near a "tv timeout"

 

I understand tirapelle's position, I'm very qualified in making my comments too.

 

I would love to hear how telling someone about Kyle Dake and David Taylor is going to make them a fan and they will rush home to set their DVR-- no, not gonna happen. I've tried this on my wife, she doesn't care, she will tolerate it and wouldn't notice the matches were out of order. This little stunt will not raise the ratings a bit. Why weren't these same fans tipping the bartender every other year to turn it to ESPN for the finals?

 

Who would notice is the same fans that will be watching anyway. How bout the other 31 165#'s ? Ya this is a perfect message to send to everyone, Dake Taylor above all else.

You are missing the point, at least partly. This isn't disrespecting anybody, in fact some weights like heavy and 197 will benefit from people not changing the channel. To me this is more about Dake than Taylor also. If there is a story, it's going to be of a senior going to accomplish what nobody else has. With a great wrestler standing in his way.

No disrespect, the other weights just don't have that story. There are others, just not as good imo.

 

Who is changing the channel?!

What wrestling fan is going to turn the channel on the national finals.

And if there are new fans watching, wouldn't they have been hooked during the first 8 matches anyway, or during the 165 match?

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And if you do wait until Friday night, why not go nuts and decide on a specific order for all 10, taking into account matchups, storylines, and team race?

 

I agree. But typically these things go in steps. Similar to my story about the same-day tape delay finals, they aren't going to go right to live primetime coverage. If this is successful, I could see them going to staged-order finals.

 

I too would like to see more of a 'bout card' type finals with the most anticipated matches being last. This would be very easy to script as the semifinals are completed on Friday night and there is nearly 24 hours before the finals.

 

The best finals I've ever been a part of have the most intense, most anticipated matches last and you leave the event wanting more, not nodding off. It's why they don't do the undercards after the main event. I'm glad we (wrestling) are starting to catch on.

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Have you read these replies? Many people leave early and change channels. At most events, after or during 197 a lot of people head for the doors, and yes even at nationals where the traffic is the worst.

It's about the Hype, and what they can sell. Maybe there won't be new fans, maybe more old ones are watching than ever. Maybe they watch longer. This allows ESPN to sell more ads, which makes wrestling more attractive.

 

Plus we all leave at the peak.

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ISU:

 

And if you do wait until Friday night, why not go nuts and decide on a specific order for all 10, taking into account matchups, storylines, and team race?

 

 

this is what I was trying to get at in my post, that could be a very cool deal for educated fans that know what is going on, but putting a possible 4Xer at the end also makes it good for the occasional fan or the uneducated fan to have something to look forward to. Regardless of sport followed by folks they all understand how extraordinary the feat of 4X champ is. If the team points come down to that match that place will be even more nuts, but not sure that happens....in fact I am pretty sure it will not.

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Don't know how much chance there is the big matchup won't occur, but I would have thought it wise to simply announce today that the order of matches in the finals could be adjusted for marketing purposes or whatever. BUT wait until after the semis, or actually until Saturday morning weigh-in to make sure you will have the climactic matchup you were building up.

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In 1987 at Maryland, I believe, they used a somewhat random order of finals. Bill Kelly of Iowa State pinned Brad Penright of Iowa at 126 and helped spur the Cyclones to the title, snapping Iowa's 9-year streak. I think that's right. Coulda been 1988 at Ames when they changed the order. If you were there, lemme know if I'm okay or messed up!

 

JCG, I was there (1987 at U Md) for that one - the order of the finals was indeed juggled a bit that year. I'm not sure if this was the sole intent, but the result was that they ended the tourney with the 177 lb. final match between local favorite Rico Chiapparelli (AKA the Baltimore Butcher) and Daryl Pope. That match did not disappoint, and ended with an incredible scramble, with Chip coming out on top. And the crowd went wild! 8-)

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The success of boxing and then MMA with the "uneducated viewer" should tell us wrestling folks something.

 

People like stories, build-ups, and "main events." And people like to anticipate such main events. There are entire TV series devoted to the stories and even the rather boring training (yes, the workouts themselves, somewhat glorified for TV) of top athletes leading up to event day.

 

You don't even have to go as far as other combat sports. Similar promotional strategies are used for many sports leading up to the Olympics or other high-profile athletic events. I remember seeing stories about weightlifters, not exactly the most popular athletes even compared to the relatively unpopular wrestlers.

 

Making a big deal out of a historic, highly likely potential event to promote nationals and try to increase interest can only be good for our sport. It's not like they're promoting a raffle after the last match to keep people in their seats. They're using a time-tested strategy that has worked for other sports. Why is that not a great idea worth one try?

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The success of boxing and then MMA with the "uneducated viewer" should tell us wrestling folks something.

 

People like stories, build-ups, and "main events." And people like to anticipate such main events. There are entire TV series devoted to the stories and even the rather boring training (yes, the workouts themselves, somewhat glorified for TV) of top athletes leading up to event day.

 

You don't even have to go as far as other combat sports. Similar promotional strategies are used for many sports leading up to the Olympics or other high-profile athletic events. I remember seeing stories about weightlifters, not exactly the most popular athletes even compared to the relatively unpopular wrestlers.

 

Making a big deal out of a historic, highly likely potential event to promote nationals and try to increase interest can only be good for our sport. It's not like they're promoting a raffle after the last match to keep people in their seats. They're using a time-tested strategy that has worked for other sports. Why is that not a great idea worth one try?

THIS.

 

PLUS. Regardless of the outcome of this main event, people on one side or the other will need an excuse like this!

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The success of boxing and then MMA with the "uneducated viewer" should tell us wrestling folks something.

 

People like stories, build-ups, and "main events." And people like to anticipate such main events. There are entire TV series devoted to the stories and even the rather boring training (yes, the workouts themselves, somewhat glorified for TV) of top athletes leading up to event day.

 

You don't even have to go as far as other combat sports. Similar promotional strategies are used for many sports leading up to the Olympics or other high-profile athletic events. I remember seeing stories about weightlifters, not exactly the most popular athletes even compared to the relatively unpopular wrestlers.

 

Making a big deal out of a historic, highly likely potential event to promote nationals and try to increase interest can only be good for our sport. It's not like they're promoting a raffle after the last match to keep people in their seats. They're using a time-tested strategy that has worked for other sports. Why is that not a great idea worth one try?

 

Exactly. Well put.

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The thought that building towards the most exciting final needs to coincide with announcing the order 2 weeks out is silly, to me. They could accomplish the very same thing by promoting the possible match ups (Dake-Taylor! Stieber-Maple! Stieber-Ramos! 125 Four Man Round Robin! 174 Thirty-Seven Man Round Robin!) and note that the lineup of the FInals will be determined after the Semifinals are completed. You can still promote the match up without locking yourself into 165 going last. This gives you a ton of flexibility and minimizes the chance of a letdown last match.

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GREAT idea, but as others have stated, probably could have waited until Friday night to announce it, and then gone wild with mixing up the order. Although it's very unlikely to happen, imagine the letdown for everyone involved if the finals involves Dake or Taylor wrestling some guy not named Dake or Taylor. Bummer. Although it would be comical if both Dake and Taylor lost and we had a marquee match with two "other guys".

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GREAT idea, but as others have stated, probably could have waited until Friday night to announce it, and then gone wild with mixing up the order. Although it's very unlikely to happen, imagine the letdown for everyone involved if the finals involves Dake or Taylor wrestling some guy not named Dake or Taylor. Bummer. Although it would be comical if both Dake and Taylor lost and we had a marquee match with two "other guys".

I agree that we should have waited until Friday night to announce this, and then gone wild juggling up the order, but you definitely don't want all of the matches at the back end. Say, if there's four big matches, or matches that will affect the team race, and you put them all right at the end, you kill the ratings for 6:30-8:30 (or whatever the first two hours of the broadcast are). If you put them, say, first, fourth, seventh, and last, then you've kept the ratings for the entire night, and, of course, you hopefully get to end with Kyle going for his fourth title, which should keep the ratings up straight through to the nighttime SportsCenter!

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Marketing is important for any "product". Marketing drives advertising, which generates money, which leads to more coverage. Lets take advantage of it. In light of the recent IOC announcement, every avenue should be used to promote the sport. I see it as Dake attempting history- 4 timer at 4 weights- rather than Kyle vs. David. Dodge trucks could cash in on the "4 x 4" promo, and the match could be billed "David and Goliath". o.k. i'll shut the he** up.

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