Flashback: CBS Sports and the NCAA Tournament

Flashback | Gate 21

Yes, friends and neighbors the NCAA Tournament is upon us.  Thus, we all get ready for the mayhem that accompanies that grand old tradition.  For what seems like forever, that has included watching endless hours of basketball courtesy of CBS Sports.  Now, generally, I am a huge fan of CBS Sports, and I favor their web presence when it comes to sports content on the internet. **

All that said, last year’s NCAA tournament almost drove me mad.  Actually it wasn’t the tournament, but the way that CBS covered the tournament on television.  That led me to fire off at the mouth a bit.  Since it is that time again, I figured it would only be appropriate to take a stroll down memory lane and look back on what I had to say about CBS’s coverage.  I do this for two reasons.

First, this seems relevant as we all get ready to become couch potatoes for a month.  This may be minimized a little bit due to the fact that CBS will be broadcasting all games online free of charge once again, but the fact remains a big flat screen is infinitely better than even the best computer monitor.

Second, I have been so busy that I haven’t yet gotten a chance to finish up my thoughts on the Oklahoma State Cowboys…

Thus, without further adieu, we go back in time to my post entitled simply:

CBS = Complete Bull Sh*t


BANNER%20-%20RANTS

I intentionally waited a few days before airing this complaint, mainly because I didn’t want my vitriol to be mistaken as nothing more than “sour grapes” over the BasketVols loss to the Louisville Cardinals.

Trust me, this has nothing to do with Tennessee, Louisville, or any other specific team…

CBSFor the past … well, it seems like quite a long time, now … CBS has been the exclusive home of the NCAA Tournament. I vaguely remember ESPN covering first and second-round games during the 1990s, but CBS is all we have had for a while. Either way, CBS has held a stranglehold on the Final Four since Billy Packer conned James Naismith himself into signing over the rights some time during the 1920s — back when Billy Packer was in his 50s.

First of all, I do want to applaud CBS Sportsline — CBS Sports’ internet division — for their ambitious decision to broadcast every tournament game for free on the web. Similarly, the CBS “Game Center” on the internet for each game — displaying myriad stats and information in real time — is amazing. It is as artful as it is impressive. Any fan can get up-to-the-second information on every facet of the game — including points, fouls, assists, shooting trends, whether a player is taking bribes to throw the game, which boosters the cute little cheerleader next to the basket is sleeping with, and so much more — via one of the best interfaces I’ve ever seen for statistical information of that kind.

Despite the minor fact that the bandwidth draw for the “March Madness on Demand” service has been so obscenely high that it has — at times — nearly crashed massive trunk lines on the web, I salute these efforts of CBS’s internet division. For reasons which will become clear in a second, in the future I may choose this as the only way I’ll watch the tournament — even if it is in a 5″ x 5″ low resolution streaming window.

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**Disclosure: While lawvol is a voting member of the CBS Sports Football Blog Poll and the CBS Sports BasketBlog Poll, neither this site, its editor, nor publisher receives any payment or other compensation of any type or kind in return for participation. Furthermore, neither Gate 21 nor lawvol received any benefit of any kind for this article, which was neither requested nor solicited by CBS Sports. This article represents the actual opinion of the author (for what that is worth) and was in no way influenced by any other person(s).

About the Author: "Lawvol" -- I'm just a guy living in North Carolina who has an unnatural fascination with the color orange. Just because I'm a Tennessee alum and die-hard Volunteer fan doesn't mean that I can't poke a little fun at the Big Orange and anybody else for that matter. Feel free to complain all you want. >> Read more from this author

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5 Responses to “Flashback: CBS Sports and the NCAA Tournament”

  • hooperNo Gravatar says:

    My wish is that the CBS announcers would someday learn that there are more than 2 players on each team. Every year, that seems to be the maximum number of players they are capable of talking about.

    But what they lack in numbers, they make up for in hyperbole.

    Could I get just one game from CBS where I don’t come away believing that the announcers have boy band-esque posters in their bedrooms of a team’s “superstar”?

    /eyeroll

  • lawvolNo Gravatar says:

    Boy band-esque posters! I think you may be on to something. I think Verne has Justin Timberlake all over his walls…

  • Home Sweet HomeNo Gravatar says:

    Verne and Gary probably have Tebow posters on their walls, not sure it’s JT…

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