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ABC / ESPN Football Coverage. . .wow, Just Wow!

+21 HS
sullie's picture
October 24, 2018 at 9:31am

This isn't about the loss on Saturday, honest to God, it has absolutely nothing to do with that.  In fact, I wanted to wait and watch Monday Night Football last night to see if it was just me being upset about the game or if there was more to it.

There was a posting last month after the PSU game about the horrible game coverage but that focused on announcing.  I agree 100% with that, Fowler was particularly fowl that game and well Herbie gonna Herbie with his big boy pants on. . . in space. . .with moxie. . .and with tempo. . . having his ears pinned back of course. . . but I digress.  I noticed, in that specific game, I was really frustrated with the camera work but I thought "maybe I was pissed about poor game play and my frustration was manifested in the camera coverage?"

No, this isn't about that and it's not about the announcing, this is just about the game and camera coverage.  I don't know nor do I understand why they INSIST upon messing with the game coverage.  How many times did we miss part of a play (or all of it in at least one or two instances) while they were showing a replay?   And this always happens when we're doing hurry up, they show the replay and you'll miss the play that just happened.  And it's not like split screen technology is analogous to split atom technology here, it's been around for decades.  You know the offense is running hurry up, they've been running hurry up, either do a split screen or wait until the game is not in progress. . .please!  That's a huge annoyance that you would think could be easily fixed but it happened during the PSU game as well.

To piggyback onto that whole "missing the game" theme, why do they do these STUPID random close up shots while the teams are lining up?  I don't want to see a close up of overweight, attention seeking, overly decked out (whose names shall remain nameless) fans, nor of "funny" banners, band members, coaches picking their noses, etc.  I WANT TO SEE THE GAME!  I want to see the teams lining up. Conversely, how many times does a play happen and they don't show the replay?  Instead, you see a human interest story, a non-informational sideline cut, a meaningless trivia question, a meaningless "Heisman watch" stat comparison board, stats from when the teams met 10 years ago, etc.  Again, all that stuff is fine but I don't want to watch that instead of the game you know?

And while it came up I want to touch on these human interest stories DURING THE GAME.  So you miss 1, 2 or more plays while they recap some human interest story.  And I'm not talking about Tyler Trent because I'm well aware of him as I live in Indiana and I've heard about Tyler for quite a while now.  My heart goes out to his family, that did not bother me in the least, in fact that put the loss in perspective more than anything else.  And I said this during the game and I'll repeat it, to me, if we had to lose a game then I'm okay losing that game on that night just to just see a smile on that young man's face, just for him and his family to have that special moment, that's  priceless, I'm happy for them and so no I'm not talking about that.  

No, I'm talking about the puff pieces the sideline cubby reporters do EVERY SINGLE GAME.  I didn't tune in to see that.  It may be more important the stupid football game (a lot of times, not always) but my GOD I need an escape!  I just need a few hours away from death, taxes, bills, work problems, co-workers, the boss, destruction, mayhem, politics, from the real world.  Am I really a selfish prick to just have a couple of beers and a pizza with my brother and son while we forget about our real life worries and pretend Ohio State football games are the most important thing on the planet for a few hours while we watch a football game?   Am I asking for too much here?

I'll give you a montage moment from the Monday night game.  From the beginning of that game until the end, almost EVERY time the Giants touched the ball they talked about Odell, Eli, Pat Shurmur (head coach) and all the drama in New York.  Anyway, it's the Giants at the Falcons, the Giants have the ball and they're on offense.  Instead of being able to watch the teams huddle up, break from the huddle and line up on each side of the ball you get the following :  1.) 5 second close up of Giants coach Pat Shurmur's head.  2.) 5 second EXTREME close up of Eli Manning's face, he always looks constipated.  3.) Weird overhead angle shot from the camera on a wire thingy in from a really awkward, overhead angle which shows Barkley jogging up to the huddle.   4.) Random crowd shot. 5.) Manning's face again. . . .EXTREME CLOSE UP.  6.) Shurmur's face again. 6,) Close up of Odell and ANOTHER mention of the drama in New York. 7.) Boom, the play happens but you just had a brief glimpse of the formations and you don't really get time to process what formations the offense and defense were in.

And this happens ALL GAME LONG this whole bizarre dance, this weird ballet of random close ups  and human interest stories and this odd camera angle meandering, pseudo generated (for camera) drama that's completely unnecessary all woven together with a tapestry of non-speak and cliche's from the announcers.  Honestly, I love football, the game has enough drama in it, this other drama just isn't interesting (to me) or necessary, THE GAME has built in drama.  Like Monday night's game wasn't a great game but it was good and even though you kind of knew the Falcons would win, it was close.  And if you had FF players going, at least that part was exciting but my point is, the manufactured drama just isn't necessary and the camera distraction/direction shouldn't be the focus.  I feel like the game has gotten to be frustrating to watch with the piss poor production work.

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