Are Thursday and Friday games really that good for BYU football?

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  • Samwise Eagle Mountain, UT
    April 14, 2014 5:43 p.m.

    As someone who is not only a BYU fan, but also a fan of college football in general, I love having BYU games on Thursday or Friday. That way on Thursday or Friday I can focus completely on the BYU game, and then on Saturday I can spend the whole day paying attention to multiple games at once. When BYU plays on Saturday, I focus almost completely on the BYU game when it is on (watching college football is a hobby, but watching BYU football is a passion), and sometimes miss parts of other good games that I otherwise would have caught. Non-Saturday games help me have a bigger overall college football experience those weeks. However, I am glad there are also BYU games on Saturdays and can usually catch the highlights of other good games online. It is a good balance.

  • Whoa Nellie American Fork, UT
    April 14, 2014 2:55 p.m.


    That's the point of Saturday games. You can use your whole day going to the game and not wasting time around the house doing things your wife wants done. You must be a newly-wed. Life is too short to spend time doing anything other than going to a college football game. Perspective my friend, perspective.

  • Steven S Jarvis Orem, UT
    April 14, 2014 7:28 a.m.

    I'd even enjoy the occasional Tuesday or Wednesday game that ESPN runs. As long as I could watch BYU football I am game.

    The thing I enjoy most about the non-Saturday games is that I can tune in and really pay attention. On Saturday I tend to keep updated on all the games going on so it is much harder to focus on just BYU when they do play Saturday. I have also noticed that the Saturday games tend to be scheduled VERY late in the evening. When I get done with the post game and head to bed its early morning. I would much prefer that happening on Friday night.

  • benjoginko Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 13, 2014 4:30 p.m.

    As a BYU fan I prefer the Thursday and Friday games. Saturday games eat up your entire Saturday and make it hard to do other things.

  • Ronald Uharriet SWun City, Ca.
    April 13, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    More important on which night of the week the game is being played, is the team that we are playing.

    A game vs. a team like Idaho State, Middle Tenn., or South Central Mid Main being played at Prime time ABC, CBS, NBC, or ESPN, on a Saturday, will not give the exposure that we could get playing any time of the day, any day of the week on any Nationally broadcasted network playing teams like Notre Dame, Texas, USC, Oregon, LSU, FLorida, Florida State or Oklahoma, especially when they are ranked.

    The difference is pride. If we are proud that our team is playing a top notch quality team, we may even leave a funeral to watch it. When we are not proud that we are playing a
    team, we may rather go to a funeral than waste our time watching a game when we know the outcome before the game is played.

  • Cougar 4 Life Provo, UT
    April 13, 2014 8:47 a.m.

    Anytime BYU can get on national television it is worthwhile! It gives more exposure to the university and to the church. It shoud (and probably does) translate to more young athletes in all sports seeing the exposure they can get by being on TV each week. As that continues some "unexpected" recruitable athletes will become aware of BYU and see the exposure that they can receive. It works the same way in all the other sports with the opportunity to be on BYU TV.

    Wearing a PAC 12 sticker on your jersey only caries so much weight if you are a crappy team in a prestigious conference. Kids want to be seen on TV and their parents and families want to be able to see them. The combination of independence, ESPN, and BYU TV is working and will only get better. As BYU recruits better athletes who will abide by the honor code, more Saturday ESPN games will come. For now, take the Thursday and Friday games and win!

  • FACTchequer Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2014 12:05 a.m.


    Many fans, myself included, prefer college football to pro football.

  • Coog Fan in Spokane Spokane, WA
    April 13, 2014 12:01 a.m.


    "CBS is now going to televise an NFL game every Thursday night this coming season. Not on their cable station but on the parent network. Good luck to anyone going up against an NFL game and you better believe the NFL will schedule an attractive contest."

    The NFL has had Thursday night games on cable for several years now. This is not new. The fact that it's on CBS network is irrelevant - you'd have to have cable to get ESPN games anyway. And yeah, I'm sure ESPN has to factor this into their broadcast decisions, but some viewers actually prefer college football over regular-season NFL.

    Coaches would strongly prefer Saturday games; my guess is players would as well. This is the downside to a deal directly with ESPN - they put your games at times when they can get the best financial result. Unfortunately, the 2014 scheduling is in direct correlation to the 2012 and 2013 performance on the field. Live in the Top 25, and you'll get better scheduling from ESPN.

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    April 12, 2014 10:04 p.m.

    CBS is now going to televise an NFL game every Thursday night this coming season. Not on their cable station but on the parent network. Good luck to anyone going up against an NFL game and you better believe the NFL will schedule an attractive contest.

  • JD Las Vegas, NV
    April 12, 2014 8:59 p.m.

    BYU is competing with high school football on Friday nights. Future students, athlete's and parents are at high school games, not watching BYU football LIVE. Yes, the game repeats can be watched and games can be recorded. But Saturday IS college football day, that is when the majority of games are played, if your not playing on Saturday, your not playing when the rest of the nation is paying attention. The sport tickers, game highlights, media conversations are all about the teams playing on Saturday, the early week games are somewhat lost and forgotten. It's really not any different than the old MWC days of being at the mercy of the networks with odd dates and times. Early week games are the appetizer, not the main course. With BYU desiring to be at the big boy table, they need to be playing when the big boys do! With almost half of the season scheduled games to be played on a Thursday or a Friday night does not put BYU on TV on the day that everyone is comparing and evaluating who is good and who great. What is more important: being relevant or ratings?

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    April 12, 2014 8:12 p.m.

    @ 4601

    Why? Michigan, Fresno, and ISU > BYU, USU, and Weber.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    April 12, 2014 7:08 p.m.

    These games are totally aweseom.
    this chart pretty much proves more peopel watch byu football the Noter Dame and Wisconsin combined! We have more fans that UW and ND! Utah fans cant match that.

  • 4601 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 12, 2014 5:44 p.m.

    Salt Lake City, UT
    BYU will survive very well without playing utah, but games with the Big 10, ND, competitive PAC 12 teams, which excludes utah, and others are always of interest. utah shot themselves in the foot by not scheduling BYU.

  • rhappahannock Washington, DC
    April 12, 2014 2:30 p.m.

    I think the Texas, Virginia, and GT games all show the importance of Network. Texas has one of the largest fan bases around, if not the largest. Since this was an away game and they were ranked, you would assume they would be even more likely to tune in. But, it looks like they didn't. Similarly, Virginia and GT have much more established names and fan bases than other programs such as Utah. However, they had almost the same viewership as the less established MTSU. It seems that network really does matter.

  • Rikitikitavi Cardston, Alberta
    April 12, 2014 2:07 p.m.

    Basketball attendance is down. Four reasons(there may be more) 1. late start times esp. on week nights 2. Games being televised so some watch at home 3. BYU is much more academically intense..gotta study 4. WCC conference teams have dismal following on the road. As regards football the first three reasons likely apply. Add into the mix "other" events competing for fans' attention, and some opponents since we went "indy" have dismal following on the road. I am quite sure our attendance will suffer on Thurs. and Fri.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    April 12, 2014 1:53 p.m.

    "dont forget that you live in a state that most East Coast people know next to nothing about."

    Weak smack. That says more about those East Coasters than it does about the state of Utah.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    April 12, 2014 11:30 a.m.

    Real Bass
    Idaho Falls, ID

    "Lots of people used to travel to Provo for games but with inferior completion and Thursday games a lot of people are staying home."

    Anecdotal statistic, but I believe the last time I watched a Provo non-Saturday game on TV, the announced attendance worked out to 92% of capacity. Thursday night in the snow, game is televised, and 92% still made it out.

    Wish our sacrament meeting attendance was so faithful.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    April 12, 2014 10:53 a.m.

    BYU Fan in DC:

    "If you want to elbow in Williams comment when he was 16 and in high school, dont forget that you live in a state that most East Coast people know next to nothing about."

    What does that have to do with Williams believing the Y was a D-II school? Jamaal isn't from the east coast. He's from San Bernardino County.

  • Texans for BYU Houston, TX
    April 12, 2014 10:32 a.m.

    It doesn't matter to me what night of the week BYU is playing. I love being able to tune in and support my team. If it was an afternoon game during the week I'd just TiVo the game and watch it when I got home from work.

    I feel sorry for the Utah fans in Texas... (are there any?) who can't watch all of their games. And I love that my team comes down here to play occasionally. Independence has many benefits.

    Go Cougars!

  • ClarkeinAK Anchorage, AK
    April 12, 2014 10:29 a.m.

    As a BYU fan in Alaska, having ESPN involved is a blessing in regard to the fact that I can watch more games. The drawback comes from BYU having a coach that doesn't seem to have a passion for winning, like a Nick Saban does, and it trickles down to the team. So, watching BYU get it's butt kicked on national TV isn't fun, entertaining or worthwhile and I, and many others, turn it off. Until the school and coach consider football as something other than a tool for exposure for the church, they will find more and more of their games on ESPNU or ESPN News and not on the main channels...and fewer people watching (which defeats the purpose, right?).

    Bronco still considers coaching a 9 to 5 job - until that changes, it doesn't matter what night BYU plays on, or its opponent...winning puts butts in the seats and eyes watching on TV.

  • Rose Bowl call yet? Salt Lake City, UT
    April 12, 2014 8:23 a.m.


    BYU's Thursday/Friday games will be on ESPN/ESPN2 competing against only one or two other games for national attention.

    Utah's Saturday morning/afternoon games will be on PAC net regional, lost in an avalanche of other games.

    Good luck even being able to watch the game without paying a premium price if you are a Utah fan living in Washington and Utah is playing in California or Arizona.

  • thebigsamoan Richmond, VA
    April 12, 2014 6:59 a.m.

    Just win games, all of them regardless of who the opponent is, and all else will fall in place. TV time slots and day of broadcast will take care of themselves which will result in more national exposure and more respect for the program. So until that happens on a consistent basis, it will be the "same old same old" story. Nothing will change!

    I know it's hard to attract the top athletes in the country to BYU but I keep hoping we'd somehow pulled a miracle with a bunch of walk ons and no name athletes. I always love a Cinderella story anyway! It happened once and I'm hoping it'll happen again.

    Go Cougars!

  • BYU Fan in DC Washington, DC
    April 12, 2014 1:20 a.m.

    Chris B... Can you find the article that talks about how many people tuned in to Utah vs. (fill in the blank) games? Since you constantly like to draw comparisons, dont forget this one.

    Oh, and dont forget that you cheer for a university that some NBA athletes have thought was a city (Dirk Nowitzki). If you want to elbow in Williams comment when he was 16 and in high school, dont forget that you live in a state that most East Coast people know next to nothing about.

  • Real Bass Idaho Falls, ID
    April 12, 2014 12:31 a.m.

    Sure, grab the dollars. Who even cares about attendance at games on thursday. Lots of people used to travel to Provo for games but with inferior completion and Thursday games a lot of people are staying home.

  • Floyd Johnson Broken Arrow, OK
    April 11, 2014 10:59 p.m.

    Many BYU fans do not live in Utah Valley. I appreciate the concern that it is difficult to pick up the kids from school and get them to a Thursday night game, but channel availability is important for those of us spread throughout the country.

    I am not particularly concerned if other people watch the games.

  • Darren Rowe Heber City, UT
    April 11, 2014 10:12 p.m.

    @My Perspective

    It's true that there are more viewers when we play good teams, but that is true for every team across the country. I'll bet Alabama vs. Auburn had a heck of a lot more viewers than Alabama vs. Eastern Tennessee Institute of the Arts or whoever they played early in the year.

    So yes, the opponent makes a difference, but that is true for any football game. Nobody wants to watch the best team if they are playing a bad opponent. It's much more interesting to watch BYU play Wisconsin than Idaho State.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 11, 2014 9:43 p.m.

    Games on Thur or Fri are absolutely great for BYU. There are far less options for football fans around the country to tune into which obviously gives BYU a better shot at a greater viewership.
    Put BYU mid-saturday and most of their games will go relatively unwatched outside of Provo. There are just far better games for the nation to switch to. Now if it's the occasional Wisconsin or Notre Dame game, that might be a different story, but we all know that has more to do with, well, Wisconsin and Notre Dame.

  • Vladhagen Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2014 9:02 p.m.

    @MyPerspective. I think that the opponent had something to do with why those games were on ESPN (or not). But, the much larger contributor to viewership comes from the channel the game was played on. If I had ESPNU, I would have tuned into every single one of those games. Those were radio games for me. Basic statistical practices tell us that in order to make such a conclusion as you have, the games would all need to be shown on the same channel.

  • LoveTheKittens Central, UT
    April 11, 2014 8:58 p.m.

    Any amount is worth it to be on ESPN. Independence is the ultimate acheivement, now if we could keep people from going to high school games on Fridays.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2014 8:11 p.m.

    Interesting. It appears that the underlying premise of the article is that people tune into to ESPN to watch byu. The graphic indicates that the highest viewership was games against BSU, Wisconsin, ND, Texas and Utah. Could it be that those games had the most viewers because of the other team and it had nothing to do with either byu or ESPN??

    Take a look at who byu's competition was for the games with the least number of viewers. None of them have strong fan bases.

  • Mister J Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2014 7:44 p.m.

    College Football on Thurs is good plus a decent alternative to Wrestling.

    I don't like the NFL on Thursday & NCAA games on Friday are pointless.

  • BlueHusky Mission Viejo, CA
    April 11, 2014 5:47 p.m.

    Losing to Boise 7-6, as I recall was two seasons ago, in the Riley Nelson broke-back year. Doman was OC.

    Last year, BYU had a brand new offense, new offensive coaches, a beat up OL, and whipped BSU, Texas, and Houston. Yes they did not beat Wisconsin, Notre Dame, Utah and Washington, but we're looking for improvement this year.

  • Wayne Rout El Paso, TX
    April 11, 2014 5:00 p.m.

    Since I have to fly to attend games, I certainly want all changes to be made as early as possible. There needs to be a time when no further changes will be made.

    Until BYU has some good teams for 5 or 6 years or joins a major conference they won't have much clout to get anything. Watching Bronco's BYU is boring football. If this tread continues we'll be lucky to get on TV any day of the week. Losing to Boise 7 to 6 is not why people watch BYU. I fear it will be some time before BYU has a real creative offense.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2014 4:25 p.m.

    Why doesn't ESPN just put the games on Saturdays?