New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

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New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Rogobob77 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:04 am

Changes to the 2019 Horizon League basketball tournaments, for men’s and women’s:

* Only top eight seeds (out of 10 teams) make the tournament.
* Quarterfinals will be on campus sites (high seed hosts), March 5-6.
* Semifinals, finals will be at Little Caesars Arena, March 11-12.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Tacitus651 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:41 am

Crazy to think that our season could be over by March 2. I like the new format, though. The tournament byes were stupid. Maybe it makes sense for bigger leagues to find a way for every team to play, but for a small league I won’t be crying for the 9 and 10 seed teams that don’t make it. I realize some low seeds had some good runs in HL as of late, but this new format is fair and I think overall good for fans.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby titanmac » Tue Sep 11, 2018 12:27 pm

good chance we don't make it this year.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby cjmcgow35 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 12:40 pm

https://www.detroitnews.com/story/sport ... 265958002/

Here's Tony Paul's article. Looks like this is the last year of the current deal.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Anthony G. Sahadi » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:09 pm

I believe this is a good change. In my opinion, it keeps the "college aspect" in place by allowing teams to still have home games. Plus, more competitive with 8 teams rather than 10.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Rogobob77 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:13 pm

Here’s the press release from the Horizon League:

http://www.horizonleague.org/news/2018/ ... dness.aspx
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Tacitus651 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 3:55 pm

After reading the Tony Paul article and the release from the HL, it’s hard to imagine this tourney is in Detroit in 2020. It’s a shame it never quite worked out, and a real shame we never capitalized on the proximity.

Should be interesting if another city hosts the tourney in the future or if we revert back to campus sites for all games.

I could see Indy being a destination. I don’t think any city can have great success with a HL tourney so long as the final game is on a weekday.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby ptctitan » Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:57 am

The format is an attempt to make sure that the best team gets the bid. Milwaukee would not have made the finals in 2016-17. It's also an indication of how far the HL has declined in recent years under LeCrone. The performance of some of the worst teams in the last two tournaments also shows how little separates the top teams from the bottom teams in the HL. It is not even a league of have's and have-not's. In the other topic on predictions, one reason why Oakland gets a top-tier predicted finish relates to its competition in the HL. Under LeCrone, it's become a league of different degrees of mediocrity. Our program is partly to blame for this situation. So, let's all get behind Davis and win our way to success. We can't control what LeCrone does and does not do. But we can control our future; and, blaze our own trail.

Step 1: Build the winning culture. The new coaching staff expansion is one indication that the school is making the effort to build a winning men's BB team. A permanent video coordinator instead of using a grad assistant. A special assistant's position and bringing in the electric Eric Devendorf from Syracuse for that role. Adding Tracy Dildy and his Chicago connections. Assistant Coach LeGree attending the UD Jesuit open practice yesterday. Lots of offers already to good players in 2019 from various parts of the nation. And a head coach with a passion for breaking down video, coaching to his players' talents, and consistent success at every level of D-1.

We need to stop fixating on the past and focus on the current efforts to build a successful future for Men's BB. We may find new doors open for us once we create a consistent winning culture on the court and in the stands.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby ExcitedTitan » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:27 am

Tacitus651 wrote:I could see Indy being a destination.

Indy would probably be the best choice so long as we play downtown. Downtown Indy is great for tournaments because a lot of fans can stay within walking distance of the arena and there are plenty of bars, hotels and restaurants. I have been to a number of MCC/HL, Big 10, and NCAA tournament games there and the city is made for tournaments. Its not people driving in for the game then leaving.

Tacitus651 wrote:I don’t think any city can have great success with a HL tourney so long as the final game is on a weekday.
If we can find a time slot on ESPN on the weekend. It may have to be a 10:00am final or have the game on the Ocho.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Rogobob77 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:26 am

cjmcgow35 wrote:https://www.detroitnews.com/story/sports/college/2018/09/11/horizon-league-basketball-tournament-staying-detroit-under-condensed-schedule/1265958002/

Here's Tony Paul's article. Looks like this is the last year of the current deal.

On a media note, I for one appreciate that the Detroit News has assigned Tony Paul to cover the Horizon League and the two metro Detroit members of the conference. On the other hand, the Detroit Free Press devoted zero coverage to yesterday’s story, on par for how they generally pay attention to area college sports outside of the two Michigan Big Ten teams.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Titans03 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:40 am

Rogobob77 wrote:
cjmcgow35 wrote:https://www.detroitnews.com/story/sports/college/2018/09/11/horizon-league-basketball-tournament-staying-detroit-under-condensed-schedule/1265958002/

Here's Tony Paul's article. Looks like this is the last year of the current deal.

On a media note, I for one appreciate that the Detroit News has assigned Tony Paul to cover the Horizon League and the two metro Detroit members of the conference. On the other hand, the Detroit Free Press devoted zero coverage to yesterday’s story, on par for how they generally pay attention to area college sports outside of the two Michigan Big Ten teams.

+1 We always hate onTony Paul (and sometimes rightfully so) but he is at least trying to cover UDM/OU/EMU/CMU/WMU.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Big Chuck » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:48 am

I am sorry, but I think the desperation of the league to keep even a little event at LCA leads to another defeat for HL fans. Apparently all we are worth to LCA is a Monday and Tuesday date. I don't blame LCA, they certainly did not get what they hoped for in the tourney. After the Pistons came to town, it was obvious that they had no room for the long HL Tournaments. The league has known this for almost two years.

I have always been a huge fan of the multi-day one location tournament. I recall the years that were so much fun even when we lost them all. I think that format this year should have been sent back to a campus site rather than the schedule we have been given. THERE ARE NO WEEKEND GAMES for the fans! I understand the sellout to ESPN for the TV final, but at what point does it really matter? Can someone tell me how many recruits the league has gotten because of that game? I could live with a Tuesday Championship game anywhere, but it is unconscionable that fans have not one game on a weekend when they can travel far easier and cheaper than during the business week..

I'm retired and can afford to travel anytime, but I am not the future of the HL. How will we ever make ourselves desirable to a location if we schedule our tournament when it is so hard for fans to travel out of town to attend? Better to retreat to campus sites with weekend quarters and semis, build the league tourney game attendance and market to a smaller market in a couple of year. Dayton, Grand Rapids and Fort Wayne come to mind.

This league has many challenges. This tournament format is going to solve none of them.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Tacitus651 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:01 am

The whole Kowtow to ESPN needs to be analyzed. Sure, it’s nice to be on ESPN for the final game. But, if the final game could be broadcast on a Saturday or Sunday on ESPN2, I’d argue that’s just as good these days. Most bars broadcast both. Most people with cable watch both and seemlessly press one button to go back and forth. For cord cutters like me on things like Roku, it’s becomimg less and less relevant which “channel” you are on every passing year.

And, let’s be real. The HL isn’t gaining fans or recruits because the game is on ESPN. Being on ESPN is a sign of respect for the league I suppose, but how much respect can we get when the final game has no one in the stands and the announcers are talking about how the winner will be a 16? I say make the final games over a weekend and settle for ESPN2.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Big Chuck » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:21 am

I am sure that if they could have gotten an ESPN2 weekend commitment they would have jumped at it. I think you overestimate the product.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Commissioner » Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:21 am

The league needs to decide if it wants to be on ESPN, or wants a live fan "event." If it wants to be on ESPN, it should probably play the games on campus sites unless it can get ESPN 2 on a weekend (and I think Chuck is right, it probably can't). If it wants an event, it needs to say screw you to ESPN and have a Fri-Sun event, with the Sunday final ideally early enough for fans to return home and be at work on Monday. My guess is it could arrange a decent TV package with some other network. Which is a better way to go I don't know, but the HL doesn't have the power to demand ESPN show its championship game on Sunday, and it doesn't have the cache or fan numbers to get enough fans to take 3 days off work to attend games at a central location to make it worthwhile.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby ptctitan » Wed Sep 12, 2018 3:01 pm

As each year passes, the need to be on the main ESPN network declines because the TV model is changing to a disaggregated or a la carte model. That's what ESPN+ is all about.

The problem is that I have no confidence in LeCrone's ability to see this trend.
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Re: New format for Horizon League basketball tournaments

Postby Tacitus651 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:07 pm

ptctitan wrote:As each year passes, the need to be on the main ESPN network declines because the TV model is changing to a disaggregated or a la carte model. That's what ESPN+ is all about.

The problem is that I have no confidence in LeCrone's ability to see this trend.


Really, though, you need to get in front of the trend. I don’t think most people know where sports entertainment is going (I sure don’t). Admittedly, no one should have confidence in LeCrone figuring that out and executing a strategy.

It’s worth questioning if ESPN+ works out. Are people willing to shell out an extra $5 per month for offbeat sports, mediocre college athletics, and old 30 for 30 episodes? My guess is, generally, no. People will only pay for so many things and in a world where most people have Netflix and maybe HBO GO, Prime, or Hulu to go with it, they’re tapped out. If you’re paying for cable and now ESPN wants to charge you more for the content you used to get for free on ESPN3, it’s annoying as hell. They might as well have actually called ESPN+ The Ocho.

I don’t know what will happen, but I wouldn’t be surprised if free content becomes more accessible. If you have an internet connection and a Roku you can watch PlutoTV and see a wide variety of sports for free. Big Sky Conference had the initiative to be a part of it: http://pluto.tv/guide/sports

I don’t know the financial specifics of Big Sky being on Pluto, but I’m impressed by it. It makes tuning in very easy, as Pluto is very intuitive and works without any technical problems. The bottom line is that if you’re a mid major conference, there’s not a ton of viewers or “would be viewers if we just got on ESPN.” Barriers (subscription fees, crappy technical abilities) will probably just end up costing the loyal fans those leagues already have.
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