Part of Danny White's vision for UB Athletics is a desire to "Build The Next Big College Brand" here in Buffalo. Over the past year the director has been busy at work promoting the school by it's more formal and official name, "The State University of New York at Buffalo".
The move is bold and has drawn both cheers and jeers from various bodies withing the community of UB Students, Alumni, and fans. Despite some resistance the department has proceeded to put this mark on uniforms, the basketball court, and now the football field.
All of the work that has been done seems to be nothing but the foundation of what White is trying to build. The new mark is not on the floor of Alumni because it looks sharp, it's there to send a message to people who see a UB football or basketball game.
|Sat, Sept 6||@||Army||12:00 PM||CBS SN|
|Fri, Sept 12||vs||Baylor||8:30 PM||ESPN|
|Wed, Nov 5||@||Ohio||8:00 PM||ESPN2/U|
|Tue, Nov 11||vs||Akron||8:00 PM||ESPN2/U|
|Wed, Nov 19||vs||Kent State||8:00 PM||ESPN2/U|
|Fri, Nov 28||@||Massachusetts||TBD||ESPNU/3|
This year there will be opportunities for people nationwide to see the mark on UB's field than ever before. The Bulls have seven home games and a total of six games on television. One of those games, Baylor, will be nationally televised on ESPN from UB Stadium.
The other six games will likely end up on ESPN3 or the MAC Digitial Network.
I am still holding out hope, however faint, that WGRZ will pick up the Norfolk game for a local broadcast.
Section 1.2 of the agreement between UB Athletics and WGRZ state that the school is to produce two "football or basketball" games per year for transmission over WGRZ-TV (Channel 2 TV) and 10 games for transmission over WGRZ-D2 (The WGRZ-WX or WGRZ-AT digital sub channels).
I can not emphasize strongly enough my belief that a game on WGRZ on a lazy September Saturday evening will help brand awareness for UB Athletics in the local community more than playing on the road against Army on CBS Sports Network.
But whether or not Buffalo has another game picked up their six scheduled TV appearances is tied for second in the conference and a far cry from the days when "WECKING it" was the only option for people out of town.
2014 Mid-American Conference Football TV Schedule - Hustle Belt
Toledo leads the way, thanks to a tough non-conference schedule, with seven televised games this fall. Bowling Green and Buffalo are right behind with six. Akron (4), Ball State (4), Eastern Michigan (2) Kent State (4), UMass (4), Northern Illinois (4) and Ohio (5) all also make multiple appearances on television. Central Michigan, Miami and Western Michigan each make one appearance on television this fall.
Five of these games are winnable, not a sure thing but definitely winnable. Could this be the season UB starts to make the new brand mean something? How many highlights can they generate which will include the big "New York" at the 50 yard line?
It's going to be fun to watch for those of us who are out of town. For the people in town though it will be way better to be there in person, so get your tickets!