Despite a high scoring, record-setting game that saw a combined 108 points between Alcorn State and North Carolina A&T, television ratings for the fifth installment of the Celebration Bowl did not reflect the excitement and big plays on the field.
Viewership for the Aggies 64-44 win over the Braves last Saturday in Atlanta was down 25 percent and 23 percent in total viewership on ABC, with 1.8 million viewers, according to Nielsen estimates from ShowBuzz Daily.
Through Monday, seven of the eight bowl games to start the bowl season have declined from last year, with six, according to Sports Media Watch, reached historic lows.
The New Orleans Bowl dropped 25 percent; New Mexico Bowl slid 28 percent; Camellia Bowl fell 28 percent and the Gasparilla Bowl dipped by 34 percent.
The inaugural Celebration Bowl in 2015 between Alcorn State and North Carolina A&T drew a 1.9 overnight rating.
Like someone said, it is hard when the NFL is on the same day. But it did not matter for me, watched and for those who did not, missed one of the best ever!
That’s not surprising. Remember the Heritage Bowl in the 1990s? Five straight seasons the Heritage Bowl had super ratings. The second half of the decade ratings fell immensely. Bad attendance and the loss of corporate sponsor all but doomed the HBCU postseason bowl.
Next year is the last of the six year of existence of the Celebration Bowl. If ratings dip another 25% or worse,it will be the last time we watch the Celebration Bowl.
And the advertisers did what to really promote the game? Yeah. I heard a few radio ads, but I live in Atlanta, I should have. We’re there ANY television commercials? How about that flood of promotions a couple of weeks before the event, did that happen? NOPE! Folks need to work ahead of the curve. If you know the weekend it is played and not the teams, start promoting that. Put it in our minds that the game will be that weekend,. Get us hyped! Advertise “Will your team be there? Promote the city, the festivities, the parties, the celebrities. The schools need to challenge each other, Make it Pop! Boom, we already thinking and planning on how to be a part of it. Essence fest don’t even have there acts pinned down, but they start that Hype a month after Festival. People get hyped and start saving money. Step the game up!