Can't Please All of the NFL Fans All the Time

By: Roger Sheppard
By: Roger Sheppard

With three regional teams and three networks, it's still a toss-up as to which games we will air from TheNewsCenter

Even with three television stations here, we still can’t please all the people, all the time. I’m finding that out through phone calls and e-mails I’m getting from folks, upset that we’re not showing more Cleveland Browns games. I thought I’d take a minute and share with you what we can…and what we can’t do. What we CAN do is this: Each year, we get a chance to tell our networks – NBC, CBS, and FOX – which teams we’d most like to carry in football and in baseball. We always say the top three teams we want to show are (alphabetically) Cincinnati, Cleveland and Pittsburgh. Until he joined the Cleveland Indians last winter, we’d also add whatever team Nick Swisher was playing for. The networks have their rules and agreements that they go through, to determine which games they can show on which stations in what areas. We only had a couple of Indians games slated early this season on FOX Parkersburg. When I contacted FOX about that, they said it was because the team was so bad last year. Hopefully, with the success they had this year, we’ll be able to offer more Indians games next year. If we were located in Huntington, we would probably show more Cincinnati games. If we were located in Clarksburg, we’d probably get more Pittsburgh games. If we were located in Cambridge, we’d probably get more Cleveland games. As it is, we’re about equal distances from each of those three cities, so it’s always going to be a toss up as to which games we get. We can lobby the networks as to which games we’d like. But it’s ultimately their decision. We can’t force them to carry only the games we and our viewers want. Like the networks, we want to show the games that are likely to attract the most viewers, whether they involve regional teams or the teams locked in tight battles for playoff berths. But with so many teams playing at the same times, we can’t show them all. We usually show three or four NFL games each Sunday on our NBC, FOX and CBS stations. I hope at least one of them will be to your liking.

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