If desperate times truly do call for desperate measures, then FOX Sports made some pretty hires to try to compete in a college football world that is usually dominated by ESPN. The only problem is the announcement is completely underwhelming.
If you are a football fan, you know all about ESPN’s College GameDay. Host Rece Davis and football analysts Lee Corso, Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and David Pollack bring it each and every Saturday morning in the fall to provide in-depth coverage and pregame hype leading up to the biggest games in the country. FOX Sports is apparently looking to challenge the World Wide Leader in Sports with a new college football pregame show of their own.
On Monday, FOX Sports announced its plans for the new show, which will be hosted by Rob Stone. It will also feature former Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer, former USC star teammates Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart, and former Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn.
If this sounds incredibly mediocre, don’t worry. It most certainly is.
There is definitely some shock value with this show. Having Urban Meyer is an interesting play, especially with how crazy last season was with he Buckeyes. So is having Reggie Bush, who is more known for having to forfeit his Heisman Trophy than anything these days. Add in Leinart and Quinn and, well, it just doesn’t scream must-see television, although FOX makes it sound like they just got the Dream Team of college football analysts.
“With a head coach that won three national titles in 10 years, two of the most successful college quarterbacks in recent memory and one of the sport’s most electric running backs, our new college football pregame show has the game covered from all angles,” Silverman said. “Not only will this all-star cast resonate with viewers because of their recent on-field accomplishments, but this group is going to have a lot of fun discussing the games each week… Urban and Reggie will make fantastic additions to our already impressive college football roster, and we’re looking forward to seeing Brady shine in his new role,” Silverman added. “We think that this entire lineup will educate and entertain viewers with the unique FOX attitude that viewers are familiar with.”
— FOX Sports National Networks President Mark Silverman
The show is only going to be an hour long, which is two hours less than every ESPN College GameDay. It just doesn’t feature many strong personalities.
Meyer is not necessarily made for TV, but he cannot seem to want to retire. Not to mention, he isn’t exactly the most popular guy around. Bush has done fairly well on the NFL Network, but it seems like this is more of a last-ditch effort to stay completely relevant. Leinart and Quinn are solid at their current jobs, but, again, not incredibly electric.
The balance between football and personalty is what makes College GameDay thrive on a weekly basis. It’s a phenomenal mix. This is not the same.
Perhaps this show will do well and all five guys will be great at talking football, but judging by the additions of Meyer and Bush, College GameDay really won’t have to worry too much about their ratings dropping next season and moving forward.