PDA

View Full Version : NCAA Regionals - Time to Go Back to 2 Sites?



Pages : [1] 2 3 4 5 6 7

HockeyMan2000
03-27-2010, 10:36 AM
I've brought this up a few times in the last couple of years...and after looking at some of the poor attendance figures yesterday, it might be time for the NCAA to really look at this scenario for the future.

Having 2 "Super Regionals" in the East and West seems like it would solve issues involving seeding, would offer more hockey, more teams, more fans and, overall, be a more attractive event to attend than the current format.

Right now it seems like the 4-venue format just isn't appealing enough for a lot of fans, especially casual observers who may not have a team involved, but otherwise love college hockey. Just doesn't look like a lot of those types of fans (I count myself as one of them) are interested in going to a regional for 3 games when some of those fans might be going to the Frozen Four two weeks later (and who might've attended championships the week before). As an event, it's simply not compelling enough IMO, unless you've got, again, "your team" involved. Pumping it up by increasing the teams and games would go a long way to adding some energy and interest back into it...I can only think how "dead" the atmosphere is in these buildings that are not even half-full.

Granted there might be logistical issues involved, but I think it's worth investigating on a number of levels.

Thoughts?

REDMEN2002
03-27-2010, 10:48 AM
I've brought this up a few times in the last couple of years...and after looking at some of the poor attendance figures yesterday, it might be time for the NCAA to really look at this scenario for the future.

Having 2 "Super Regionals" in the East and West seems like it would solve issues involving seeding, would offer more hockey, more teams, more fans and, overall, be a more attractive event to attend than the current format.

Right now it seems like the 4-venue format just isn't appealing enough for a lot of fans, especially casual observers who may not have a team involved, but otherwise love college hockey. Just doesn't look like a lot of those types of fans (I count myself as one of them) are interested in going to a regional for 3 games when some of those fans might be going to the Frozen Four two weeks later (and who might've attended championships the week before). As an event, it's simply not compelling enough IMO, unless you've got, again, "your team" involved. Pumping it up by increasing the teams and games would go a long way to adding some energy and interest back into it...I can only think how "dead" the atmosphere is in these buildings that are not even half-full.

Granted there might be logistical issues involved, but I think it's worth investigating on a number of levels.

Thoughts?

It makes sense. I posted over at Eagle Action that I would much prefer going back to the days of the super regionals. Seeing four games in two days rather than three, I can then justify the 85 prices for the 2 day packages. In 2001 fans in Worcester were able to see Minnesota, Maine, North Dakota, Boston College, Colorado College and St. Lawrence. 3 western teams to mix it up and 3 eastern teams to boost attendance. That building was electric both nights.

thebrain
03-27-2010, 11:05 AM
I think two regionals would be better. Maybe St. Paul, Denver, Detroit, Omaha, or Milwaukee in the west and Boston, Pittsburgh, Albany, or Providence in the east.

Plus having six days to fly across the country to cities where flights can be more expensive keeps fans at home. Imagine having North Dakota, St. Cloud, Wisconsin, Bemidji State, Michigan, Miami, and UAH in St. Paul instead of spread out across the country. The regionals local awful on TV and people where wonder why ESPN doesn't show the games. They're too busy trying to find ESPN's errors.

They need to find a way to get butts in seats and look good on a national audience.

The Freds
03-27-2010, 11:20 AM
Attending in Albany this weekend I would have to agree. As a hockey fan, but not a follower of any of the four teams here, I would say that there just did not seem to be mcuh buzz last night. There were two good games, two upsets, and yet the arena felt rather empty. I talked to one guy who walked up yesterday and bought prime seats. I bought front row seats earlier this week.

Advance media coverage for this one was minimal. When I asked a photographer from the Albany Times-Union about it she replied that there was no coverage because there was no local angle. If there were 12,000 fans in town instead of maybe 3,000 it would be quite different.

The other alternative would be to choose smaller venues until it builds up. Trouble is its been this way for so many years now I am afraid it is what it is. And smaller venues will have trouble selling out.

I'm not sure whether any specific city makes a huge difference, although some do a better job than others.

Two eight team tournaments would be much more attractive for the money.

It is time.

bronconick
03-27-2010, 11:48 AM
The thing you're forgetting about the old super regional setup is that you were talking 6 teams per region. Now it would be 8. The ice is going to look like ****, and you're probably not going to really fix your attendance issues as far as how it looks in the stands. Let's use this year's Midwest and West regionals for example.

Miami
Alabama-Huntsville

Bemidji State
Michigan

Wisconsin
Vermont

St. Cloud
Northern Michigan

Option A is to play 4 games Saturday and 2 finals sunday. The ice will suck, and people forced to buy tickets for the entire event (You really think the NCAA is going to split up the ticket sales when they can jam 6 games down your throat for a $200 price?) aren't going to stick around from say, a 11am first game until a 9pm 4th game. God knows when it would have ended when you add in the SCSU-NMU 2ot game.

Option B is to play 2 Friday, have the final Saturday night after two semis in the afternoon with a final sunday. You then have a trip to the Frozen 4 played on ice that has seen at least 120 minutes of hockey already. Joy. Come Sunday, you may have a 70% empty arena as fans of 6 teams have bailed on the weekend.

Option C is to play two semis friday, two saturday and two finals sunday. Now you've got a bunch of people with a day in between. Doing that for the Frozen 4 is one thing. Doing it for a regional is another.

The only way you're going back to 2001 Super Regionals is if you go back to 12 teams first.

ck1969
03-27-2010, 12:00 PM
I think the regionals need to be moved to other venues (in the east anyway) besides the same ol Albany & Worcester. Manchester is OK. Portland Maine would make an awesome location. Close to the Boston fan base. Ton of bars, restaurants and hotels all within walking distance of the civic center. On the ocean. Something needs to be done. It looked like there were 2000 in Albany. Sad. Move it around and shake it up a little. I think that would help. Draw a little more interest traveling to a different place besides the same two cities every year.

thebrain
03-27-2010, 12:03 PM
The Minnesota High School hockey tournament has four games Wednesday and four on Thursday. Games start at 10 AM and go all day. Maybe if they sold 4 games for $50 more people would go. Also getting 10 AM games on ESPNU or other channels would be a lot easier than 7 PM.

What's happening now, for the most part, is not working.

aparch
03-27-2010, 12:11 PM
How about they quit charging bouncyball prices? I thought about making the drive to St. Paul but the sticker shock of buying two tickets for the weekend really soured me.

Priceless
03-27-2010, 12:51 PM
Option A is to play 4 games Saturday and 2 finals sunday. The ice will suck, and people forced to buy tickets for the entire event (You really think the NCAA is going to split up the ticket sales when they can jam 6 games down your throat for a $200 price?) aren't going to stick around from say, a 11am first game until a 9pm 4th game. God knows when it would have ended when you add in the SCSU-NMU 2ot game.



If Olympic hockey can be played like that, college hockey can. Not to mention the high school tournaments that play 4 in a day.

thebrain
03-27-2010, 12:52 PM
How about they quit charging bouncyball prices? I thought about making the drive to St. Paul but the sticker shock of buying two tickets for the weekend really soured me.

That wouldn't hurt at all.

Union93
03-27-2010, 01:03 PM
$84.00 to watch college pucks at a neutral sight is a very tough sell. Especially in the Albany market.

So, either lower prices or consolidate the regionals, or both.

This is a no brainer.

gfmorris
03-27-2010, 01:08 PM
I was appalled at the ticket prices here in FtW. I think they dropped them earlier this week to get more butts in the seats.

GFM

bronconick
03-27-2010, 01:17 PM
If Olympic hockey can be played like that, college hockey can. Not to mention the high school tournaments that play 4 in a day.

The Olympics this year only had 3 games per day at GM Place. The 4th game was played at UBC's arena. They also didn't have to worry about multiple OT games causing a serious backlog in the schedule. I'll take your word on high school because I live in a state where a high school title game ran past midnight and they ended the game and named both teams champion. :eek:

The NCAA overprices their tournament tickets, sells them in bunches instead of individual games, and doesn't market them well. Hell, look at the men's basketball tournament 1st two rounds last week. They run their silly little pod system to get more teams closer to home, and there are entire swaths of empty seats in the premier college sporting event....with 8 teams in each arena.

Priceless
03-27-2010, 01:25 PM
How's this format:

Friday in Worcester:
RS1: Denver vs RIT 4pm
RS2: Cornell vs UNH 7pm

Saturday in Worcester:
RS3: Boston College vs Alaska 1pm
RS4: North Dakota vs Yale 4pm

Sunday in Worcester:
RF1: RIT vs UNH 1pm
RF2: BC/UAF vs UND/Yale 4pm

Friday in St Paul:
RS1: Miami vs UAH 5pm
RS2: Bemidji vs Michigan 8pm

Saturday in St Paul:
RS3: Wisconsin vs Vermont 2pm
RS4: St Cloud vs NMU 5pm

Sunday in St Paul:
RF1: Miami/UAH vs BSU/UM 3pm
RF2: Wisconsin vs St Cloud 6pm

Priceless
03-27-2010, 01:27 PM
The NCAA overprices their tournament tickets, sells them in bunches instead of individual games, and doesn't market them well. Hell, look at the men's basketball tournament 1st two rounds last week. They run their silly little pod system to get more teams closer to home, and there are entire swaths of empty seats in the premier college sporting event....with 8 teams in each arena.

Remember that the NCAA got out of the ticket selling business in hockey - the venues market (and price) the tickets.

aparch
03-27-2010, 01:40 PM
Remember that the NCAA got out of the ticket selling business in hockey - the venues market (and price) the tickets.

But doesn't the NCAA set the guidelines for minimum and maximum ticket prices?

Priceless
03-27-2010, 01:56 PM
But doesn't the NCAA set the guidelines for minimum and maximum ticket prices?

No idea.

HockeyMan2000
03-27-2010, 02:03 PM
How's this format:

Friday in Worcester:
RS1: Denver vs RIT 4pm
RS2: Cornell vs UNH 7pm

Saturday in Worcester:
RS3: Boston College vs Alaska 1pm
RS4: North Dakota vs Yale 4pm

Sunday in Worcester:
RF1: RIT vs UNH 1pm
RF2: BC/UAF vs UND/Yale 4pm

Friday in St Paul:
RS1: Miami vs UAH 5pm
RS2: Bemidji vs Michigan 8pm

Saturday in St Paul:
RS3: Wisconsin vs Vermont 2pm
RS4: St Cloud vs NMU 5pm

Sunday in St Paul:
RF1: Miami/UAH vs BSU/UM 3pm
RF2: Wisconsin vs St Cloud 6pm

Yes, I was thinking more along the lines of a 3-day regional, obviously that creates a scenario where the "Day 1" teams gain an advantage over the "Day 2" teams -- presumably you'd put the #1/#2 seeds on the first day to give them an "advantage" for finishing higher, which isn't entirely fair BUT it eliminates the problem with 4 games in one day, OT's, etc.

Again, not "perfect," but much more attractive from a fan perspective...I second that the prices need to be lowered for the current format as well, would certainly help...but I think going back to 2 sites is really the way to go, however they can work it. The current "product" just isn't cutting it.

IrishHockeyFan
03-27-2010, 02:06 PM
Remember that the NCAA got out of the ticket selling business in hockey - the venues market (and price) the tickets.

Per the NCAA Division 1 championship handbook (http://web1.ncaa.org/web_files/champ_handbooks/ice_hockey/2010/10_1_m_icehockey.pdf) page 24, the NCAA sets the prices (this year a range of $75-90) and mandates they be sold only in all session packages until after the teams are placed in their regional sites. I'm not sure, but I don't believe any site was near the $75 dollar floor, and Fort Wayne was substantially higher.

gdart_s
03-27-2010, 02:08 PM
Has it ever been proposed to have the 1 seeds host the regionals? You completely eliminate travel costs for 4 teams, are more likely to have fanbases interested in paying for tickets, and eliminate issues of 2, 3, and 4 seeds having home ice advantage.

Could make life harder for TV, but they don't do the best job anyway. May end up in some smaller venues, but if the big ones aren't selling out anyway.