Commercial breaks crimping college basketball

The growing number of commercials during college basketball games has become a major pain.

Especially annoying are the commercial breaks that occur in quick succession. The network and/or the local station airs two or three commercials, returns to the game announcer, and then it’s right back to two or three more commercials.

Have to agree with those who say three media breaks each half are affecting the pace of the game, negating the advantage of better-conditioned teams. The day when teams averaged 80 points or better per game are a thing of the past. Players get far more rest on defense than they used to, leading to many more low-scoring games.

The commercial breaks often come at inopportune times, sometime killing the momentum of a team on a roll.

Commercial timeouts are scheduled to occur at the first dead ball (game stoppage) after four-minute intervals (beyond the 16:00, 12:00, 8:00 and 4:00 minute mark of each half). If no dead balls occur, the commercial breaks sometimes occur within a couple of minutes of each other. Additionally, the first 30-second team timeout in the second half is expanded to a television timeout. If free throws are to be shot, a timeout will usually be taken first.

Teams can get up to five timeouts each per game, so there’s a potential for a minimum of 14 timeouts per game.

Some commercial breaks are at least two minutes long. With 3:18 to go in the Louisville-Syracuse game Saturday, the CBS break included commercials for at least five different products, including Coca-Cola, Reese’s Cup, Dodge Dart, HP Notebook, a movie and the network’s March Madness web site.

Between the whistles, there was a total of 51 of them for 44 different products, including seven placements for the CBS site. The total doesn’t even include the TV advertising during the halftime intermission.

More than one fourth of the commercials — 16 of them —  were aired during the last 5:35 minutes, and almost half of those were squeezed into the final one minute and 38 seconds.

This fan in particular probably complains as much about all the advertising as he does about the quality of the officiating during TV games.

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Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

6 thoughts on “Commercial breaks crimping college basketball

  • March 3, 2013 at 6:10 pm
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    Is it just me or is anyone else bothered by the insane graphics that go around and around and pile on colors and lines and circles, ad infinitum? Enough already! Go Cards

  • March 4, 2013 at 6:26 pm
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    Unfortunately, that’s the price we pay for the outrageous rights fees that the NCAA, conferences and individual teams collect in exchange for us getting to watch virtually every game, home and away, from the comfort of our recliners.

  • March 4, 2013 at 6:40 pm
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    I generally do an exceptional job of ignoring the commercials, this mention of their intrusion raises the likelihood that I will notice them again. Lol.

    bcs, do you mean the crawler that constantly informs us of all those impossibly pertinent updates? It makes me want to tape a blinder across the bottom of my screen.

    I showed up for the game. let me watch the game already. 🙂 Go Cards!

  • March 5, 2013 at 11:13 am
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    anyone of you cards fans ever get royally pissed that chane behannan dogs it so much?? i mean i noticed in the cincy game last night he basically once again did nothing all night, and sure enuff i go look at the box score and see he didnt even record a rebound all night… yes sir 28 minutes playes 4 pts 0 rebounds… the guy is a waste, hes a no energy guy who is very overated

  • March 5, 2013 at 11:15 am
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    i am a indiana fan by the way and like louisvilles team, but just cant stand chane behannan because almost every game he just dogs it… how can a division 1 power forward plat on espn vs cincy and play almost 30 minutes and not get any rebounds?? i checked 3 different sites and everyone of them had him 4 pts 0 reb …. he will never be a nba player, too small anyway

    • March 6, 2013 at 8:11 pm
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      We’ll let him know how you feel and I’m certain he will then immediately retire from the game.

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