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Fowler on GameDay's Location Decision for This Week

Chris Fowler in his column today touched on ESPN's decision to send College GameDay to Los Angeles, when clearly there are better games in Auburn and Notre Dame on Saturday. It seems he is just as disappointed in the decision as I am:

For 13 seasons, the locations of the GameDay road shows have been editorial decisions based on the college football landscape. The basic principle was to (almost) always come from the site of the "biggest game," or occasionally, "the best story."...

Now, the philosophy has been rethought by upper management. For the first time, the competitive landscape of football programming is a frequent consideration. Serving the needs of ABC's new prime-time package of games is often a priority. The decision on GameDay's site is less a clear-cut "best game" philosophy now and is more complicated, made on a landscape where terms like "synergy" and "branding" live.

Please know this: Lee, Kirk and I have no say in decisions on GameDay's location. But as host of the show for 17 years, I am mainly concerned with the show's specific legacy, not the global college football landscape.

Let's hope that ESPN can get it right in the future. It reflects poorly on ESPN to only showcase ABC's games. Hey, I know there's a game on ABC on Saturday night. You don't need to hold a two-hour-long show at the game's site to inform me. Go to the site of the best game!

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I agree that ABC really missed the boat on this one. In Fowler's letter, which I found to be refreshingly open, he indicated a desire for regional balance along with promoting ABC games. What does that say about ABC's view of the PAC-Ten and the conference's ability to produce a legitimate Game of the Week? more...

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