• The House That The NCAA Built?

    Posted by on September 15th, 2009 · Comments (26)

    First we found out that Yankee Stadium would reprise its role as the venue for the historic Notre Dame-Army football games.  Then, today we hear that there may be something called the “Yankee Bowl” where a Big East team and a Big 12 team will do battle in a post-season football game.

    I guess I’m a little surprised that there would be a clamor to play a bowl game in the inclement New York weather in mid- to late-December.  Given that bowl games are now big business for corporate sponsors and the universities that play in them, making fans sit in crappy weather seems a bit odd when you can send your fans and corporate sponsors to Honolulu, New Orleans, Orlando, San Diego or Tempe.  Then again, there are few places more enjoyable than New York around the holidays…

    As an aside, there is now talk to bring boxing back to the Bronx.  What’s next, the circus?

    -Posted by MJ

    Comments on The House That The NCAA Built?

    1. Corey
      September 15th, 2009 | 12:37 pm

      Do college bowls mean anything anymore? I feel like there’s about a thousand of those. (I’m not a football fan, college or pro)

    2. YankCrank
      September 15th, 2009 | 12:42 pm

      I love this. Spread the Yankee brand along different sports, bring some things back (football, boxing) that made the previous park great, and keep it going with hockey in the winter as well.

      I may be alone, but i’d love to go see a boxing match, hockey or football game at Yankee Stadium.

    3. Corey
      September 15th, 2009 | 12:47 pm

      I’m not much for boxing hockey or football, so something like that wouldn’t interest me that much…but if it means more revenue for the team, which keeps the payroll going, I’m all for it. If they were to do some concerts, however, that could entice me.

    4. September 15th, 2009 | 1:07 pm

      I think this is pretty funny. When I did the tour of the old Stadium, they made a huge deal about stepping on the grass. They said that the Pope was the only non-player or team official who was allowed to step on the grass, in years. And, basically, they said, if you try and step on the grass, we’ll haul your ass off the tour and have you boiled in oil. But, now, for the power of the all mighty dollar, they’re willing to play football, etc., on the holy Yankee Stadium grass…

      …what’s next tractor pulls and Sunday flea markets?

    5. MJ
      September 15th, 2009 | 1:10 pm

      @ Corey:
      You’re right that there are about a thousand college bowls these days and, in truth, most of them don’t mean squat. The caliber of teams we’re talking about bringing to the Bronx for the so-called Yankee Bowl don’t really matter in the bigger picture of college football and, as such, the Yankee Bowl will be no different than any of the other crappy college bowls that litter the college football landscape.

      @ YankCrank:
      Having said all that (to Corey), I agree with you that I love the idea of re-branding Yankee Stadium back to its roots as the center of the sports world for all events, not just baseball. Gene Tunney, Joe Louis, Rocky Graziano, and G.O.A.T. (Muhammad Ali) all fought there and we all know about the 1958 NFL Championship Game between the Giants and Colts (aka “The Greatest Game Ever Played”). I may not be interested in hockey (I hate it with a passion at this point) but I’m in favor of having an outdoor game there as well.

      In short, if it means more money for the team and more exposure and positive attention for the stadium, I’m all for it.

    6. MJ
      September 15th, 2009 | 1:13 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      They said that the Pope was the only non-player or team official who was allowed to step on the grass, in years.

      That’s all selective marketing. Billy Joel and Pink Floyd played concerts there and Nelson Mandela — as important a figure as he might be — isn’t exactly the Pope and he was there too.

      Didn’t Billy Graham do one of his giant televised crusade things there in the 60′s? The Yanks aren’t pandering to “the power of the all mighty dollar” today any more than they did 50 years ago in a ballpark far more “special” and “holy” than this one is.

    7. Raf
      September 15th, 2009 | 5:02 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      But, now, for the power of the all mighty dollar, they’re willing to play football, etc., on the holy Yankee Stadium grass…

      Different stadiums, different grass, different times? :)

    8. #15
      September 15th, 2009 | 5:16 pm

      As long as they use some of the money to improve the view of the monuments… Go for it.

    9. Tresh Fan
      September 15th, 2009 | 5:36 pm

      I think this is pretty funny. When I did the tour of the old Stadium, they made a huge deal about stepping on the grass. They said that the Pope was the only non-player or team official who was allowed to step on the grass, in years. And, basically, they said, if you try and step on the grass, we’ll haul your ass off the tour and have you boiled in oil. But, now, for the power of the all mighty dollar, they’re willing to play football, etc., on the holy Yankee Stadium grass…
      …what’s next tractor pulls and Sunday flea markets?

      The Oprah Show.

    10. ken
      September 15th, 2009 | 5:52 pm

      I guess that The Old Man is not running the team any more.

    11. September 16th, 2009 | 12:08 am

      The Bowl game seems a little odd, but midseason games like ND-Army and such, maybe someday Army-Navy seem like a perfect fit.

      As for boxing, as a fight fan, put me down as an emphatic HELL YES. To big time boxing matches in the Stadium.

      Given the Stadium’s history with boxing, and the potential big big fights coming up next year (a potential PacMan-Mayweather bout, or even something like Cotto-Marquez or maybe a Ricky Hatton tilt) would be immensely entertaining.

    12. MJ
      September 16th, 2009 | 6:22 am

      @ sean mcnally:
      I agree completely on all counts. Traditional college football matchups (ND-Army, ND-Navy, Army-Navy) would be great fun for Yankee Stadium, given the ballpark’s historic connection to those teams.

      I love boxing and would love to see a big fight at Yankee Stadium. The only catch is that those fights would have to be in-season since it’s way too cold for fighters during baseball’s offseason.

    13. September 16th, 2009 | 11:50 am

      @ MJ:
      If I were a promoter, well first I’d be the sleaziest person anybody I’ve ever known has ever met.

      But second, I’d work out the mechanics of big-time fight card to start at 8pm July 14.

      Why July 14? Because its the Wednesday of the All-Star break next year. It’s a guaranteed dark day in the Stadium and its a dead day for sports across the country. A Yankee Stadium fight, particularly with popular fighters, would blow the hype charts out of the water – enough to get significant PPV buys midweek.

      Then again, if I were a promoter, I’d eschew the PPV model and try to go on regular network or cable (ESPN/CBS/ABC or something). PPV killed (along with the multiple sanctioning bodies) boxing as a mainstream sport.

      My other super-awesome date would be Aug. 28. The Yankees are on the road in Chicago and its Travers Stakes weekend. A big-time horse race and fight in New York, along with mid-summer baseball. It’d be like the 1950s all over again!

    14. Corey
      September 16th, 2009 | 11:56 am

      sean mcnally wrote:

      PPV killed (along with the multiple sanctioning bodies) boxing as a mainstream sport.

      i disagree, MMA killed boxing. Interestingly enough, I don’t like boxing but I love MMA…go figure.

    15. MJ
      September 16th, 2009 | 1:45 pm

      @ sean mcnally:
      I’m liking your 7/14/09 and 8/28/09 fight date ideas. Seriously, that’s brilliant and hopefully Golden Boy or Don King gets a fight card together for one of those dates.

      @ Corey:
      MMA was only able to maximize its opportunity well after boxing had peaked as a mainstream sport specifically due to the reasons Sean mentioned. PPV and multible sanctioning bodies killed the sport in the mid-1990′s, before MMA had achieved mainstream status.

      Trust me on this one, I’ve been following both closely and it took a full decace for MMA to get to the levels that Tyson-Holyfield II pulled in.

    16. MJ
      September 16th, 2009 | 1:46 pm

      *decace = decade

    17. Corey
      September 16th, 2009 | 2:07 pm

      @ MJ:
      then why hasn’t MMA suffered the same fate? They rely on PPV and sanctioning bodies the same way.

    18. Corey
      September 16th, 2009 | 2:08 pm

      @ Corey:
      and, they only had Spike TV recently…they started as PPV only

    19. September 16th, 2009 | 3:19 pm

      Corey wrote:

      i disagree, MMA killed boxing. Interestingly enough, I don’t like boxing but I love MMA…go figure.

      Boxing’s been in a slow decline since the late 1980s, once big fights moved off of things like Wide World of Sports and into the Don King-styled world of PPV.

      As I understand it (I’m not an MMA guy, mostly because it just looks like brawling, I enjoy the optics of a well-defended boxing match), MMA in the U.S. is essentially Dana White’s UFC and then a whole bunch of minor leaguers.

      In boxing, you have the WBO, IBF, WBA, WBC and WBF at least. That’s a whole lotta belts.

      I think it could be argued that MMA has really only achieved “mainstream” status, insofar as it is a rival to boxing in the niche since it went on the air with Spike.

      As for a midsummer card, the winners of the Cotto-Pacquiao and the Mayweather-Marquez fight would be the ideal headliner (with my mancrush Matvey Korobov in the undercard somewhere) would draw huge – in person numbers and on TV.

    20. Raf
      September 16th, 2009 | 3:46 pm

      sean mcnally wrote:

      Boxing’s been in a slow decline since the late 1980s, once big fights moved off of things like Wide World of Sports and into the Don King-styled world of PPV.

      That and we have a hard time acknowledging any division other than the heavyweight division.

    21. Corey
      September 16th, 2009 | 3:55 pm

      (I’m not an MMA guy, mostly because it just looks like brawling, I enjoy the optics of a well-defended boxing match
      ——
      i HIGHLY recommend MMA, to me, actually, there’s a lot more strategy in MMA than in boxing because there are so many different martial arts..you have to be able to defend against everything.

      if you want to see the best pound for pound fighter in the world, he is currently in UFC. His name is Anderson Silva, I recommend looking him up…he’s amazing to watch.

    22. MJ
      September 16th, 2009 | 3:56 pm

      @ Corey:
      MMA built its business on PPV alone. Boxing took a readily-available sport that everyone followed and moved it behind the PPV curtain. You can grow your business if it’s always on PPV and basic cable TV but boxing did the opposite.

      Toss in the multiple sanctioning bodies — many of which don’t recognize the other’s champions — and you have a recipe for disaster. And that doesn’t even address the perceived “slime” factor regarding Don King and the Duvas who, for better or worse, controlled big-time boxing and squeezed the life out of it over the past 20 years.

      Also, as Raf pointed out, the death of the heavyweight division in the post-Tyson/Holyfield (and to a certain extent Lennox Lewis) world ended boxing’s following.

      It’s not fair to guys like Mayweather, Pacquiao and others but the truth is we’ve always been more interested in the heavyweight division.

      Think of it this way: if MLB or NFL showed their product on regular TV for eons and then suddenly took everything away, it would be very hard to continue to grow those sports. That’s what boxing did.

    23. MJ
      September 16th, 2009 | 3:59 pm

      @ sean mcnally:
      @ Corey:
      I’m a fan of both so I can appreciate the skills on both sides. I don’t think one sport or another can lay exclusive claim to “strategery” (I’ve always wanted to use that word in a sentence…). Corey’s right that multiple disciplines give MMA fighters a more broad base of skills to defend against but I think Sean’s right that the “anything goes” mentality of MMA takes out some of the “sweet science” of boxing.

    24. September 16th, 2009 | 4:20 pm

      @ Raf:
      Sigh. Ain’t that the truth. Its a shame too, even good heavyweight fights can’t hold a candle to the excitement of a welterweight or middleweight fight where the guys are just much more active, rather than headhunting. All of the best fights I can remember are smaller guys (see Gatti-Ward, pick a number).

      The heavyweight division has also been hurt lately by the dearth of good big fighters in the Western Hemisphere. The Klitchkos may be great fighters (but dull as dirt to watch), but they don’t have a natural constituency here in the States, making them a tough sell.

    25. Raf
      September 16th, 2009 | 4:28 pm

      @ sean mcnally:

      To be fair, they tried with Roy Jones Jr & Naseem Hamed (remember him? hahahahaha!) but it just didn’t happen.

    26. Corey
      September 16th, 2009 | 4:30 pm

      MJ wrote:

      Think of it this way: if MLB or NFL showed their product on regular TV for eons and then suddenly took everything away, it would be very hard to continue to grow those sports. That’s what boxing did.

      i got ya. I understand sometimes in MMA the anything goes attitude works out, (ala Brock Lesnar’s last few fights), but 8 times out of 10 the “science” and strategy of MMA wins out. For everytime you see Brock Lesnar pummel the crap out of Frank Mir purely with brute force, you’ll see 5 times where Frank Mir gets Lesnar to tap out because he weathered the storm and found a leg to put in a leg bar(granted it happened once, there are countless other examples).

      Heck, Anderson Silva’s last fight was against a guy a weight class up and made him look silly, and not cause he just used brute force. Definitely look him up on youtube, watching that guy fight is a think of beauty.

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