It’s Not Just the Economy, Stupid

No wonder the capacity of Neyland Stadium is shrinking...

“There are so many decent games on tv (and the tv pictures are so clear) that the average SEC fan will have little motivation to go see his team, if its record and performance are mediocre. It’s a lot easier to recline on a couch with a cold beer and watch several decent games than it is to drive to a stadium and endure the game day hassle.”

This is a recent comment to a post on Outer Monvolia, an online forum all things Tennessee Vols. Tom Mattingly who writes a blog at KNS, called “The Vol Historian,” posted a link to that post, and thus here I am posting about the post that Mattingly posted about…

Tennessee is one of those programs that draws from a large geographic area — it can hardly depend on patrons from the Knoxville metropolitan area alone. All it would take would be a relative handful (say 5,000) of people to want to sit on the couch with the family and watch the game at home on the HDTV instead of making the trek that invariably takes all day, or more, to make a noticeable dent.

This situation doesn’t apply to me personally, but I know that if I was driving from Nashville, the Tri-Cities, Chattanooga, or from some other point of origin that caused every home game to be a day-long marathon affair, and every one of those games was broadcast on HDTV (and yes, commenter, those TV pictures are so clear), I’d think twice, too. Or, perhaps not at all.

Perhaps it’s too early to tell if it is the HDTV that’s the reason — or it is the product on the field and/or the sheer hassle of the journey, or the economy/price of gasoline/price of donation and tickets — but I’m willing to bet that some of the fans are lured to stay home solely by the fact that you can now see the individual blades of grass on the screen.

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