ABC Gets a Kick Out of Bowls

Jan 5, 2004  •  Post A Comment

Whether or not you agree with the BCS choice of the national champion of college football, there is one thing everyone can agree on-the Bowl Championship Series was a bonanza for ABC. In the wake of the controversy, which allowed the Alphabet Network to raise its Nielsen household rating guarantee for the Rose Bowl 2 points to a 14.2 rating, overall advertising revenues increased an estimated 15 percent for the college football series. Even before the increases, national advertisers such as Nokia, AFLAC, Home Depot and Citibank paid as much as $1.6 million for a strip of four spots that ran in each of the four bowls: Sugar, Rose, Fiesta and Orange. Advertisers were promised a 48 cume household rating for all four games. Considering the high rates, Ed Erhardt, president of ESPN/ABC Customer Marketing and Sales, said BCS has become, like the Super Bowl, a showcase for advertisers launching new creative for their commercials.