For those of you who are unaware, Tim Tebow is a media savvy, good looking and very religious quarterback who plays for the New York Jets. He was a superstar in college but his performance in the NFL has been questionable, and although he had a good season with the Broncos last year, he was traded to the Jets after the Denver Broncos got their hands on Peyton Manning. Tim Tebow has barely touched a football this year, yet he has the highest ratio of airtime to game time in the history of the NFL.
Recently, ESPN President John Skipper made some very interesting comments about the way sports broadcasters are geared after he gave the order to ”dial back” the network’s coverage of the media phenomenon that is Tim Tebow.
”In some ways, the more difficult internal conflict is between long-term story telling and ratings,” Skipper said. ”We all know that if you focus on the Tebow story, for the next 10 minutes you’re going to do better. But the question is trying to take a long-term perspective and saying, ‘Guys, let’s not get over excited about one story and hyping it.”’
ESPN is one of the world leaders in sports journalism and with a president like John Skipper this comes as no surprise. It’s refreshing for a sports enthusiast like myself to know there’s a network that talks more sport and less crap! If I want a laugh, I will watch The Comedy Channel and if I want gossip I will flick over to E! News.
Sports journalism is deteriorating in countries like England, Australia and the United States where networks feel they have to entertain rather than cover sport. Broadcasters need to follow Skipper’s lead and start focusing on providing professional sports analyses so fans can get back to what really matters – the sports!