It can’t be easy to jump between three games, while all are under a minute left to play, but that’s exactly what CBS has had to do multiple times in the Tournament so far. For the most part, they’ve been doing a splendid job, but there have two specific incidents that caused an uproar. The first one came on Friday, as a potential buzzer beater by Wisconsin was switched away from in mid-air, and the second was a change away from the supposed “constant feed” in Louisville during their game against Siena.
Well today, CBS Sports Exec VP/Programming Mike Aresco apologized for the problems, and explained that one was a control room error, and one was just a bad idea. Via SBD….
“We always plan on staying with a constant. In some situations, and we’ve done it over the years, we’ll try to get to just a buzzer-beater and get right back to the constant. In this particular case we had an unusual situation that developed. You had two exciting potential buzzer-beaters at the same time. We’re trying to what we call ping-pong back and forth and then there were some bizarre circumstances in those games and we did use commercials as best we could. When games were stopped we would go back but in this particular case, yeah, we didn’t get back fast enough and things were happening quickly and it happens.” Aresco said CBS “in this particular case” made a mistake. Aresco: “I think in this particular case we probably needed to get back a little quicker.” Meanwhile, Aresco described the network cutting away from Friday night’s Wisconsin-Florida State game while the final shot was in mid-air as a “control room error”
While I was one of forty people yelling at a bar during the Wisconsin-FSU one, I could understand the slip up, as both games were extremely close in the last minute of play. The whole constant thing in Louisville is only really an issue because they were trailing Siena by two at the time. Had they been up, no one would have complained about missing just a minute of action.
I think CBS does an amazing job of switching between the games, but it might be time to go with a split-screen if they can. That way they cover all of their bases.
Bait and Switch (Sports Business Daily – $)