February 25th, 2014 10:31 AM║ Posted By: John Pennington ║ Permalink
║ Schools: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt
Tags: ACC, HDTV, recruiting, SEC
Over the past couple of seasons a number of college football stadiums have cut down on in-game band performances in order to crank up rock, rap and country music during timeouts. Not all fans have been fond of the move to bring in gameday DJs.
Those fans won’t be happy about a change that will lead to more piped in music this fall.
According to Georgia AD Greg McGarity, the Southeastern Conference has decided to relax its rules regarding sound and music being played in between plays:
“If you need to get people revved up for a big third-down play, you can do that. You could always do it with your band, but now you can do it any way you want to. You still have to stop once the quarterback gets over the ball, gets under the center or in the shotgun…
They were able to do things in the ACC that we were not in the SEC. The rules have changed now for 2014 where we’re able to utilize songs and music up until the point when the quarterback gets over the ball. That’s a big change in the in-game atmosphere.”
So what was behind this move? Well, McGarity is on an SEC panel charged with improving the gameday atmosphere for fans… in order to fend off the attendance declines experienced nationwide since the advent of HDTV and the explosion in the number of televised games. ”Those of us who saw what it did at Clemson, it energized their fanbase with certain songs.”
We believe there’s another angle at play here, too — recruiting. Each year, more schools are tossing out tradition in favor of mix-and-match uniforms that utilize black, gray, all-white and pink color schemes, to name a few. Teenagers like bizarro uniforms, so coaches and schools trot out bizarro uniforms. Now what do you think teenaged recruits would prefer on gameday — a fight song played by a live band or a blaring hip-hop beat or a heavy metal riff? Our money’s on the beat or the riff.
For SEC traditionalists — meaning: older fans — the news that piped-in music will be used in between plays likely won’t be met with much joy. But if the changes help to lure in recruits and fill the student sections once more — areas that are home to tomorrow’s donors and boosters — the old-timers will just have to hold their ears.
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