Ryan Teeples: Ziggy Ansah's story priceless, evidence BYU football independence is working

Published: Thursday, May 16 2013 9:30 a.m. MDT

First off, it would be foolhardy to believe ESPN would have gone to the same lengths it did to tell Ansah’s story had the school and the network not had an exclusive TV agreement. The Mothership knows a call to BYU sports information can quickly result in a high-production-quality live interview from BYUtv’s state-of-the-art facility.

ESPN also knows by putting the oval navy blue Y logo on the screen repeatedly it’s creating demand for a brand to which it owns the media rights.

If you believe ESPN would have given the Ansah story the same airtime were BYU still playing games in anonymity on a crummy low-def network based in Colorado, Craig Thompson has a bridge to sell you in Laramie.

But again, the question: Can you put a dollar figure on this kind of exposure?

Certainly not unequivocally. But we can surmise what it would cost BYU to pay for attention like this.

Television ad rates can be confusing and complicated. So for argument’s sake here, let’s use some straight-line simplification.

ESPN earns about $2 billion a year in advertising revenue. Divide that by the number of minutes in a year and a single minute on ESPN costs a bit under $4,000 on average.

But that’s on average. Keep in mind, there’s a lot of remnant time at night where washed up bands are buying time at highly discounted rates to sell bad, over-produced albums.

During prime time, the ESPN network gets around $37,000 for each 30-second ad spot. So a minute will cost you north of $70K.

If the LDS Church wanted to buy an hour of air time during the day on the major cable network to showcase the work of its missionary program and educational institutions, it would cost somewhere between $1 million and $5 million.

It got way more than an hour from Ziggy-mania.

The value that exposure delivers to BYU, the LDS Church and its unique mission is immeasurable — it's certainly strong evidence that independence is working better than anyone at BYU could have dreamed.

Ryan Teeples, twitter.com/SportsGuyUtah, is a marketing and technology expert, full-time sports fan and owner of Ryan Teeples Consulting Inc. RyanTeeples.com

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