DAVE BRANDON HAS THE ANSWER!
Everyday I like msu more and more. At this rate, given my extreme hatred towards them, I won't be a fan for about 10,000 years, but this upcoming season, I am afraid, is going to see the attendance record drop under 100,000 an after that, what will we have?
and we are installing Wi-Fi in stadiums across the country - professional and NCAA. The demand is there and teams are creating apps for their fans. We did the whole campus for Stanford, including the iCardinal app.
Sprint installed Wi-Fi at NASCAR stadiums, but you have to have a Sprint device to use it. Fans are not happy if they have service from another carrier. Most stadium Wi-Fi services are open to any device.
There will be a segment of the Michigan in-stadium fans that will like this added feature. However, the a portion of ticket price from non-Wi-Fi users will be used to pay for this service.
This is very disturbing.
When Fielding Yost designed Michigan Stadium, he just wasn’t thinking about the Internet and bandwidth,” Brandon said. “We know that what our customers want is the ability to be able to sit there and be able to surf the web and call up replays and do all of the things they can do in their armchair at home
No, Dave. Nobody gives a shit about replays. Nobody cares about donuts, piped-in music, Kraft noodles or the WOW factor. People care about winning football games.
I don't want customers in Michigan Stadium. I want fans.
Not hard to see how this guy ran a pizza company.......into the ground.
I'm pretty sure we've been customers since the Big House was built in 1927. It wasn't until recently that we realized we're customers.
Said something to the effect that 90,000 people paid $X for their seats. And that the best part was that they left their seats behind when they exited the stadium.
Michigan Stadium has always had customers.
are priceless. If you always look at them as customers--the corporate POV--you risk losing them as fans. Making them fans is sometimes the work of generations. Treating them as mere customers risks losing them very quickly.
Looking at every single feature of human life through an economic prism is a relatively recent development. A tragic one.
I logged in to upvote you. I have worked in mental health facilities for the past 12 years. The focused used to be on patient care. Now the focus is on maximizing revenue streams. I understand that money makes the world go round, but it seems that business interests trump all other interests these days. It is sad.
desperate people to keep away from suicide; they just keep going up. His company provides a function that the state once did. They recently told him he can no longer bring clients a cup of coffee when they're upset--cost-cutting measure.
A random note (downvote me if you must for going off-topic), but in regards to sammylittle's comment on patients on healthcare facilities, I strongly recommend one watches the new HBO show "Getting On". One of the main themes is the Supervising Nurse treats as patients as "customers" and obviously a lot of the nurses rightfully dislike that. I also may mention it is a hilarious show and I am usually very picky with comedies.
As a Michigan MBA . . . I still agree with you. Not everything should be a business transaction. There is an appropriate time and place.
Do our linebackers veiw everyone they see as somebody to be tackled?
to upvote you as well.
Recently I have been wondering if maybe this signals the beginning of the dystpoian futures we have all read about over the years. Perhaps it's not the computers becoming self aware, or actually taking over, but since we can now quantify millions of data points, see everything on a spreadsheet and sqeeze every last nickel out of everything from football fans to employees, we are basically being "optimized" for someone else's benefit.
Or, I may just have too much free time.
and the ironic part about it, is that if you treat customers/fans with respect and don't treat them that way, they'll be more loyal with you in the long-term and spend more money in subsequent seasons. The problem with Brandon sometimes is that (as with many business owners) their thoughts are only on the short term.
...with your point. I was simply noting that there has always been a significant financial motivation to Michigan football. The issue, as you rightly note, is that we appear to have crossed the line from "great thing I'm happy to support financially and that I have sincere and longstanding emotional ties to" to "mediocre, commoditized marketing blitz wrapped around that thing I love like a throbbing leech." I still love that thing I love, but I desperately want to remove the leech.
I'm a fifth generation grad with a family that has owned tickets in Michigan Stadium every year it has been open. Literally.
Both my grandfathers and my dad were varsity athletes at Michigan. One of those grandfathers made at least 1 home game at UM every year from 1918-2008 (age 6 to age 96).
I attended my first UM football game at age 2.5, and attended religiously until I moved a long plane flight away, and even then, I made at least 2 games per year, even when I lived in London.
I guess what I'm saying is that our family reasonably qualifies as "fans" rather than simply customers.
That said, I have to agree with your point re the corporate POV costing you "customers," if my own family is any indication over the past 2 years:
1. I've personally had season tickets since 2000 (5 years out of undergrad, when I finally got off the waitlist - that thing that no longer exists), and in the past 2 seasons, cut my season ticket purchase from 6 to 2.
2. My brother gave up his 2 season tickets.
3. My dad cut his season tickets from 2 to 4.
All told, our family went from 12 to 4 tickets in 2013.
Our development officer in the athletic department called us 24 hours after the deadline to ask what was up, and we gave him an earful about value for money, gouging the ticketholders and the "brand experience" destroying the uniqueness of attending a Michigan football game. It feels more contrived and less authentic every year.
We then turned around and gave our PSD money to (1) the Engineering school (Dad's degrees); (2) the Ed School (mom's 2nd degree); (3) LS&A (my BA, mom's BA, brother's BA); (4) the business school (my MBA); and (5) the debate program.
We made quite clear that our money (beyond our remaining 4 tix) isn't coming back to the AD until they stop gouging for inferior experience. Said we'd be quite happy spending our money on the secondary market to acquire tickets for games we'd actually like to see, but that, in essence, our loyalty to Michigan football was being commoditized, exploited, and taken for granted.
I have 3 kids. I would love for them to grow up with the same sort of Michigan athletics experience I had as a kid, but it doesn't really exist anymore.
is way too vague of a term when dealing with a topic this complex.
You'll also notice he never mentioned "X number of wins" as being paramount to the experience.
I'm one of the biggest Dave Brandon supporters on here.
What he's done for the other sports far outweighs the bad he's done here. This athletic campus is going to be just.....I mean, something that I've been raving about for months. It's like we're seeing the building of a nation or something. Absolutely incredible to the point where Michigan will be a national contender yearly in every sport. Simply too good to say no to.
What I don't understand is the athletic department trying to make every football game "a mini Super Bowl". The WOW factor. All this stuff is not needed.
I guess I'm just too simple for this day and age. All I want is to have a couple of normal priced hotdogs & drinks and watch the game.
In the era of high-def TV and 24-hour coverage, the athletic department feels that they have to provide more than the game itself, in order to compete for viewers. In other words, what can they do to make sure that going to the game itself is better than staying at home and watching it there?
Maybe it's a necessary line of thought and maybe it's not, but the fact is that all over the country student sections are getting emptier and emptier, far too much to be an outlier. If you're an AD executive, that's a worrying trend, and you start trying things to reverse it.
...it's all about creating an experience that brings casual fans - the family of four from Grand Rapids - to Ann Arbor for the game.
I always thought the big selling point of watching Michigan football in Michigan Stadium was watching Michigan play football in Michigan Stadium. Perhaps Dave Brandon's concern is that watching Michigan play football in Michigan Stadium these days is not a very rewarding experience.
My oldest child (the 2 younger ones are not quite ready for football) does not require a mascot, a noodle, WiFi, Special K, etc. to love Michigan football, and neither did the last generation.
I don't think anyone minds the idea of wifi in the stadium. I think they're pissed because Brandon thinks that's THE reason ticket demand is down, not the increased prices, lame schedule or lack of success on the field. If he said, "fans aren't buying tickets until we win more games," I bet the board would be more likely to agree with him.
I know that I like having replays and so does my family. I am short, so sometimes I miss what happened and they don't replay everything in the staduim. We had a fan vision, but they stopped supporting it last season. It was great, you could get replays, stats, great plays from other games.
So, I guess DB is doing this for me.
Calm down Beavis!
You, my friend, need to get out more ... enjoy your youth, run, play, try to get laid -- take it from someone who knows, it is VERY fleeting. Reading your posts is not only depressing, but it saddens me to know that you're nothing but a young buck and you have so much worry and angst stemming from Michigan football.
What's going to happen to you when you're 40 with a wife, kids, mortgage, two car payments, health insurance, etc.?
Maybe it's time to find something else of which to be a devotee, ya think?
"What's going to happen to you when you're 40 with a wife, kids, mortgage, two car payments, health insurance, etc.?"
I think he turns into me. That should scare some perspective back into him.
This is very similar to the difference between leadership and management. They aren't the same thing and being good at one doesn't mean you're good at the other. Dave seems to be a good manager (arguable, I'm sure) but very poor at leadership.
I wish they treated us more like customers. Customers patronize businesses until they feel like they get better value elsewhere and leave. Loyalty generally goes as far as it is earned. Fans, on the other hand, are fiercely loyal and often line up at the trough no matter how badly a team treats them.
Not every revenue source needs to be tapped, especially when it's almost always at the burden of your greatest resource, your fans.
Having said all that, improving internet access is a big deal and will improve the experience of attending most games, particularly the shit games where you'd almost rather be at home watching a more interesting game.
I have many issues with DB, not the least of which is manifest here. Because of my job I have been involved with making decisions that would impact a great deal of people. This ususally comes during the development of policy and procedures that will have to be carried out by other people and adherence to those polices/procedures is imperative.
When you are in a position where success is dependent upon numerous stakeholders, you get input from those stakeholders during the developmental stages. If you fail to do this, you put the success of the project in jeopardy.
What I have seen from DB since he walked on campus those years ago is a guy who "knows best". No one can tell him anything and he's shown that he doesn't value the opinion or desires of the fans whatsoever. In each and every email I have seen, he has responded to fans in a condescending way, basically asking how dare they question his decision making.
If he really cared about this program and it's fans he would have sought the input of the fans. whether that be through questionnaires or some other medium, there are plenty of very quick and easy methods of gathering information that he could have utilized. Instead what does he do? Make changes he feels are appropriate with no attempt to determine what people reallly want.
The problem with this is DB doesn't really represnt the average UM fan. This means he may sometimes get things right (like in this instance, it certainly seems like people would enjoy having this), but many times he'll miss the mark. Heck, given the choice many would probably live without wi-fi if they had a choice between that and lower ticket price. But how could anyone actually know that??? Oh yeah right....ask them.
Dan Brandon: The Man Who Knows Something, what exactly that something is remains to be seen.
Bo said Mr. Brandon should run for governor , I agree. Get the fuck out of the AD's office Dave.
He just needs to start working on the bag man network. than we can worry about internet
If he ran for governor and lost it would make me one of the happiest people out there.
Meaning the majority of this board is not going to read because we do not give clicks to that site.
Feel free to summarize and then seperate your opinion paragraph from the link because right now it looks like you're summarizing the link --- but you're not.
No one understands your rant if they don't read your link...but people will read your rant thinking it's a summary of the link. When they realize that it's not they will be frustrated and downvote you.
You may also want to go as far as to say FREEP: (Title of the article)....because your current title tells you nothing about the article and then when you click it, you tell us nothing about the article in your rant. Plenty of people will want to know what the answer that Brandon has, but there is no way of finding out without clicking the link....that many people don't want to click.
Just a heads up. #MGoBlog
It's pretty hard to avoid if it's your local paper. Detroit News is okay, but I found the Free Press' bankruptcy coverage to be more up todate, more informative and they did a ton of digging for for information. Really a great job.
The title is trolling for clicks...and it really does go against board rules.
I'm not a native Michigander, and am not too familiar with newspapers in Detroit. What's the story on the Free Press? Why don't people here read it?
I don't see the issue here. The OP is sort of mixing 2 issues. People want broadband at the stadium for the cell phones if we played Bama, FSU, USC, and Stanford, or if we played a bunch of...well next year's schedule. The schedule issue and price issue are their own situations. If the bad schedule drives the athl dept to do the broadband quicker, then I guess it's a tiny silver lining. They have not had to worry about these things for decades since they always sell out and have 10s of thousands on the waiting list. Based on Brian's story last week they had 8% (or slightly less) non renewals which I found a staggering figure and eventually you run out of waiting list. So the fire is lit I am sure under everyone's seat, including Brandon.
I do agree with WolDevotee above on the word customers - sounds bad. How about our fans or our fanbase Dave? I mean it *is* all about branding.
And bottom line if we went 12-0 with a typical Wisconsin schedule people wouldnt complain about the schedule THAT much. The fact we are mediocre for quite a few years now is exposing a lot of other fissures.
so i can finally get around to watching Treme
Some people (a lot of people, let's be honest) could never really get into Treme. I wasn't one of them. If you have love for New Orleans and/or music, you'll love it. If you like interesting stories, you'll merely like it and watch all of its episodes. Underrated show, IMO.
and then i can dive in to like 5 straight episodes.
People would complain less but it wouldn't go away. OSU's schedule was a joke last year and while they were winning everything their fans were still not happy about ticket prices vs schedule quality.
If I am a customer let me just say that the athletic department has terrible customer service then...Boom! Roasted!
You know I think the best thing about the Michigan Stadium experience the last few years has been the lack of "lol Michigan" texts you can receive there.
for the liveblog if this happens??
Freep article. Dave Brandon. Two week old quotes. Should make for an entertaining morning.
They are daring you to bring out your unicorn...
Wait this isn't the Wolverine Liberation Army?
I know of a place where Dave can put an antenna.
WHERE?! I DON'T GET IT. EXPLAIN IT TO ME LIKE I'M 5.
We can put a man on the moon, but we can't put wifi in the big house?
nor can we build ships with 16" guns or 12 inch armor plate anymore.
I read somewhere that the race to the moon cost us 5% of the US government budget for much of the 60's. Of course we did get tang and space food sticks out of it.
To paraphrase JFK:
We choose wifi. Why go to the moon? Why does Michigan play App State. We choose wifi in this decade and the other things not because they are easy, but because they are hard!
What Brandon says is probably true. At the end of the season, all of the season ticket holders take a survey to say what they want to see improved as part of the stadium experience, and I'm guessing WiFi availability was very high on the list.
Do we really have to complain about everything Brandon does? Maybe the students aren't showing up early because once they get in the stadium, they won't be able to share selfies on facebook?
Is this like a multiple choice what would you like to see improved: A) Nothing; B) wifi; C) More Piped in Music.
I just don't ever remember wanting to check my phone during a game.
but I'm betting there are plenty of people who do.
Aren't they worried that people checking their phone will dampen the atmosphere and allow for people to be less enthused about the game in front of them?
I don't know how serious these comments are but (and I say this as a middle aged man now) there seems to be a major disconnect between generations. The typical 13 to 28 year old (I don't know the exact ages) has their cell phone as an extension of their hand. Flipping through apps during a football game would be second nature - these are people who can text without looking at the phone and will send messages to people 5 feet away rather than walking over to talk to them. I am sure they are doing other things on those phones that I have no idea about as well.
People make it sounds like old foggies (in this case 29 years old and above) stare straight ahead in rapt attention for 3 hours without swiveling their head other than to watch the band. Being "mobile" for that age group is like "talking" for us "old" folks. So what is immaterial to X age group is probably pretty vital to a group that has only known life with mobile electronics being second nature to their breathing.
Sometimes I wonder if the people complaining about WiFi in the stadium also want the live blogs on this site shut down. After all, if you're typing something in or reading other posts, you aren't paying full attention to the game!
When the commercial breaks are 6 minutes a pop, they want to do something.
Actually something like that. The survey basically asked about it in 2 ways. The first, they basically ask you how strongly you agree with a statement like "WiFi access is very important to my gameday experience." The second, they will list like 10 topics, plus an area to add "Other", and then ask you to rank them in order of importance to you. It actually does include things like "Music selection" and "Concessions".
that we can field an offensive line that isn't such a f*cking sieve.
We also need to collectively remember that we (read: rabid fans) aren't necessarily a perfect cross section of Michigan's total fan base. For every one of us that wants to listen only to the band and the sound of our offensive line literally running over an Ohio player, there are 10 freshmen who really couldn't care less.
This seems like a way to keep the majority of those who purchase tickets happy and also to appease the students (future season ticket buyers) who have been none too impressed with the football experience and AD in recent years.
I hate him as AD. He was a really good pizza CEO. Engineered their massive turnaround.
Not really... the new stuff at Domino's sort of came after he left.
Not to nitpick but from a capital return perspective Dave did poorly - the stock came IPO in 2004 at $14 - when he left in 2009/2010 stock was $10ish. That's not good. It did get as high as the $30s in 2007 before crashing, and got as low as I think $3 at the nadir of the financial crisis. It is now near $80 for perspective.
I guess one could in theory argue that developments after he left in 2011-2012 were due to groundwork he laid but it would be a reach. The next CEO brought out a lot of ideas outside of 'branding'.
Ok in that case, good on him - its a shame he didnt do these things 5 years earlier when he could have benefited and looked a lot better to his shareholder base, because the timing of these initiatives to the public came around the time of the new CEO. Anyhow let's just say there was alot of stagnation at Domino's for the majority of Brandon's 11 years. From the story I linked re: the IPO the business was stagnant/shrinking 5 year into his watch:
Domino's reported net income of $39 million on sales of $1.33 billion in 2003, a 36% decline from net income of $60.5 million on sales of $1.28 billion in 2002. First-quarter 2004 net income was $18.4 million, nearly half of Domino's total for all of 2003.
I think this was already covered, but he led that turnaround and only left for Michigan after it was well underway. I think he was even in some of the earily ads?
Yeah it was stagnant, but you can say that about a lot of businesses that have a decent market share and then sit on what they have (cough cough GM) while the competition gets better.
What I do not get...... is how this accomplished business person totally does not understand Michigan, the sport, or the fans.
Having worked in public companies and exposed to upper management and having worked with (and being an entrepreneur) I think the term business person can mean very different things and people too easily interchange various personality types/strengths/weaknesses under a broad title.
Taking over Exxon Mobile which is going to do better if oil is $110 a barrel versus $85 no matter what the hell you do, is very different than trying to say grow Chipotle's as a concept 8 years ago. Or even your local mom and pop. A Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, or Steve Jobs is a very different type of CEO than a Brandon or 100s of other similar Fortune 500 type CEOs are like. And frankly CEOs are just like the rest of us - there is a bell curve; there are great, good, average, poor, and plain awful ones.
So what you're saying is that Dominos won with Dave Brandon's players after he left?
After he engineered the long decline. He was the CEO for at least ten years before the "we're sorry our pizza sucks" campaign.
Damn....every time football is brought up I cant help but think "Wow. we are in the shitter". And now, we dont even have basketball anymore.
Oh hush. Basketball will be just fine. Every year there are questions and every year Beilein has answered them. With banners!
PEOPLE WANT TO BE ABLE TO EXPERIENCE THE STADIUM/GAME WITHOUT ALL THE EXCESS BULLSHIT YOU TRY TO PUT IN THE WAY OF FANS ENJOYING THE GAME.
GOOD TEAM ON FIELD
MORE BAND LESS SPECIAL K
NOT GETTING PRICE GOUGED
(it seemed like this post really required all caps)
I feel like it's only a mattter of time before we have to give up the "no advertisements" thing. Judging by the sluggish ticket sales, I think that the amount of money that can be milked out of fans without advertising has probably peaked, and costs will continue to go up.
My opposition to advertising is based on the fact that I don't trust the AD to do advertising well. I'm worried that it will turn into a minor league baseball environment rather quickly.
You mean we could get a puffy taco kicking field goals !?!?! That would be awesome!
Don't be silly
It will be a stuffed pizza.
I wouldn't trust Brandon, but I think that it has been done in other college stadiums OK. I have been to OSU and LSU games and they have had advertisements for a while, and the atmosphere and experience don't seem to suffer.
May be in the minority but i really like Dave Brandon as AD. He doesn't do everything i would like but i can appreciate an AD that wants UM to win and do it with a little style and swagger.
I personally am neutral on him but I do see a lot of dislike of him here. But this is a different crowd than "random UM fan". Things like skywriting over a rival's stadium when you have lost to them 4 out of 5 years (hey maybe we save that for a period where we can score a TD on their defense more than once every three years?), and not sending the band to Dallas until the public outcry became enormous are just bad optics. I am sure he does some good and bad things - like any AD. And if the football team was in competition for Big 10 championships annually he'd look like a genius due to RR / Hoke / Beilein. In that world, he could do his cute branding stuff in the corner out of the spotlight.
But football is what drives the athletic dept, perception and dollars.
Besides the skywriting, I don't mind anything else.
1. He also stupidly scheduled a rematch of the Appalachian State game, which will give us at least a week of embarrassing PR, and nothing else. He probably did that out of some airheaded belief that we would benefit from the "hype".
2. He let the program twist in the wind between the 2010 OSU game and the few days after the bowl game, during which the 2011 recruiting class came apart at the seams. It was widely perceived at the time that the reason why there appeared to be no public coaching search was because we had inked some sort secret backroom deal for Harbaugh. This perception was largely the result of the belief that no athletic director could possibly be stupid enough to not be looking for a coach at the time. Turns out, Dave Brandon really is that stupid. Dave Brandon's "process" was utterly moronic. People have forgotten about this -- specifically, how the lack of public action was perceived as a sign that we had Harbaugh in the bag, because the alternative was unthinkable.
3. When the UM-OSU game was being seriously talked about being moved to October, my memory of that time is that Brandon was surpringly indifferent to it.
4. He let the program get fucked over by making us play at MSU two years in a row. My guess is that he didn't offer a peep of protest over it. I guarantee you no other major athletic director would ever let this happen.
5. I think that it was maybe a few years ago that he also publicly expressed a desire to have a mascot so that little kids would be interested.
That is just what I can think of off the top of my head.
Using the timetable established by his Dominos tenure, he'll start the "We're sorry our athletic department sucks" campaign in 2010.
Don't forget the student seating debacle last football season or the PSL system (I don't understand what a PSL is but ppl seem to be upset by it).
Does this mean I can fire up my twitter account again just to hashtag #FireBrandon? #FireBorges seemed to work.
I like it the way the rest of the board like GoT.... House of Cards is pretty good as well.
edit... Sorry.... was trying to respond to Mr. Wellborne above.
Exactly what i expected from this board. In the past, there have been complaints from Brian and many others about the lack of connectivity in the stadium making it impossible to post or follow the game on twitter, to get more information when a confusing play happens, etc. So an article appears with Brandon recognizing the issue and saying they are trying to address it...and instead of agreeing the people on board attack him as with everything. Picking apart his quote in order to make it sound like he thinks wifi is the only thing Michigan fans want is dishonest and pathetic..but not surprising from the board. It seems like there is competition to who can slam Brandon the most. At least the athletes (especially non-revenue sports) love him for all the improvements and facility upgrades he has been moving forward.
The original poster exemplifies this the best..the title "DAVE BRANDON HAS THE ANSWER"...the premise about how this shows how much he is out of touch with reality...Huh? Because Dave Brandon is trying to fix something that his customers have identified as an issue, that makes him out of touch with reality???
Seems like every place one goes anymore there is someone bitching about the poor wifi service to the hapless waiter/bartender/hair dresser/auto mechanic/etc
I can see it now in the football stadium, one hundred thousand people groaning at the same time because the internet is down. But what a rush when they all cheer at it's return!
Went to my sons ball game this past weekend. 2 observations. Only one other parent besides myself offered to help and the rest of them were on their phones the whole time. I said "you know your kids are playing right". I am now the bad guy for speaking up.
At my daughter's preschool, parents have to volunteer a couple times a month to assist in the classroom. About a month ago, the school sent out an email asking assist parents to please stop using phones while assisting. I couldn't believe the parents needed to be told, please interact with the kids while you are there to interact with the kids. Amazing.
So the ''Oh stop being an old fart! People these days are just different!'' crowd really are wrong huh? Thought so. People have no idea how to socialize anymore and it IS because of unlimited texting and the fact that cell phones are now small computers. I hate it. For the record I'm only 20.
From the comment section in Freep article:
Well, we have heard constant complaining about the $295 price for student tickets. For 7 games, that makes it $42.15 per ticket so for a section of the crowd that probably really cares about the WIFI, it does exist.
I'm glad they are finally working on this. I try to use my phone often while in the stadium and it's useless. I used to think they purposely blocked the signal to prevent any terrorist attack
I just want to be able to afford tickets and not see the seats in the row next to mine go for sometimes 50% of what I paid. DB can take his dynamic pricing and PSL's and shove it up his anus.
haven't Ace and Brian bitched about the poor Wi-Fi in the stadium? Now everyone is pissed because Brandon is trying to fix that. Whatever. If Rich Rod was flying in from Arizona to install the antennae, everyone here would fucking nut themselves with joy.
If Dave Brandon wants to refer to us as his "customers" then he better be working his ass off to improve the product.
Night games are cool, fireworks are neat, laser light shows are fun, etc. but at the end of the day it comes down to winning football games, as it always has.
To him the only thing that matters is $$$$$$. Just read that every seat in the stadium will have a small sponsor on it
Man, Dave Brandon can't win with you people. All he is doing here is providing a solution to a problem that has been identified by the average fan (even Brian has commented on lack of connectivity in the stadium). Do I feel the need to be connected 24/7? No, but I can certainly see how this could improve the gameday experience for others while not being detrimental to my own. This is a no lose proposition and is met with mostly venom. It's beginning to feel like Brandon could host a group of cancer survivors on the field at halftime and the response here would be "Fuck Dave Brandon! This won't make our O-line any better, he is just pushing the brand somemore!" BTW, Dave Brandon is 0% responsible for our bad O-line.
Do I agree with everything Brandon has done? Certainly not, I don't like the slow march towards commercials in the stadium and the Dallas-band fiasco was embarassing. I wish he were more hands off with the football team, because it does feel like he's more of a head hancho than Hoke. I am concerned about the high prices. I don't blame him for trying to maximize profits, this is a capitalist country after all. However, I think he (and most of college football) are sitting squarely on a bubble that is one economic downturn or another bad season away from collapsing. He is already seeing that with the slow student sales and lower season ticket renewal rate. These are legitimate concerns but I'm capable of having them without reacting to literally everything Brandon does with "Fuck Dave Brandon!"
Isn't that people don't want WiFi. They do. I know I'd enjoy it. Ths issue is is that WiFi is a small item on peoples' wish lists.
If you do a poll asking people "would you like free guac on your burritos," 96% would say "of course I want free guac" (the other 4% are immediately deported as communists/terrorist/commuterrorists). But if you ask them to name the BIGGEST issues facing the country, very few would name "lack of complimentary guac."
Pretty much everyone would like WiFi. But it seems like a fix to something other than then primary problems.
Well, for starters I love guacamole but not on my burrito.
Secondly, people are bitching about the price and the product. Brandon can't really do much about the team. The price, maybe it can be lowered a bit. I don't know -- the money is going back into the athletic programs and school -- it's not like it's going to faceless shareholders.
it's not like it's going to faceless shareholders.
True, but a large part of it is going to faceless bureaucrats dedicated to insuring their own job security.
As C. Northcote Parkinson noted -
"in bureaucratic organizations, the number of people required to do the work will continually rise whether the actual volume of work stays the same, increases, decreases or disappears."
Well given the plans in place for the athletic campus as a whole, I'd say they're doing a pretty good job, don't you think?
My problem in a nutshell is that Brandon is a meddler.
The guy presides over a world class/world famous athletic dept., one of the few that are easily in the black, with a mind numbingly large budget . . . and he can't fucking leave it alone.
Seriously, this a place where your uber rich alumni are donating business schools, indoor fieldhouses, quarter of a BILLION dollar stadium renovations, and he's fucking around with curly fries and macaroni noodles?! WTF?!
Schmooze your big donors, count your cash like scrooge mcDuck and call it a day.
By all accounts Dave Brandon does a great job keeping the Bill Martin $ train rolling along, and that's got to be at least 1/3 of your job. Make some good coaching hires, and build some facilities when needed and thats it. End of job description.
I might be wrong in my estimates, but I would think that TV contracts, Alumni donations, athletic apparel agreements & PSD/ticket sales are probably at least 90% of your budget income. Other than ego, why is Dave Brandon messing aroiund with small-time fringe advertising, mascots, skywriting, dicking around with the band & other traditions?
Because he's a meddler; an egotistical meddler that tripled his marketing budget & staff immediatley after becoming AD and now they are in a desperate search for a WOW experience to justify it all.
What I find so laughable, is that he seems to be trying to create a sterile bland, NFL-like game day experince, while simultaneously employing minor league baseball-like tactics and gimmicks. That disconnect, coupled with the endless PR speak comes off as pretty sleazy sometimes. Michigan just doesn't need these tactics, $ arms race or not.
You can be a good CEO and a "shitty pizza salesman" at the same time.
Honestly, free WIFI is great, it's just about 10 years late and with everything going on with the program right now seems like little more than an itty bitty bandaid applied to a bloody stump.
Well given the plans in place for the athletic campus as a whole, I'd say they're doing a pretty good job, don't you think?
The Crisler upgrade was necessary.
The stadium upgrade should have never featured boxes.
The Indoor Track Building upgrade is necessary - but the moving of the track complex and the paving over of Ferry Field for more parking lot is a travesty.
...and as they've increased AD staffing, net operating revenue has been stagnant to slightly reduced.
There's only one problem that needs to be addressed and that is what the brand is, which is great football, supported by the winged helmets, block M, and maize and blue. Nothing else matters. And because Dave Brandon seems to have little control over the product on the field, he has to try to affect those things that he does have control over because he's not going to sit there and do nothing. That's marketing/advertising 101. Products come out all the time that are genuinely shitty, but that doesn't stop the companies from marketing the heck out of them with huge ad dollars and multi-media platforms. People may buy a shitty product once, but no amount of great advertising, coupons, or enticing in-store promotions can get someone to come back if the product disappoints.
As hard as he may try, Dave Brandon cannot market his way out of this problem. That said, I do appreciate the wifi.
Not the biggest issue facing the country? Says you, Mister. Are you aware that there is, evidently, an avocado shortage because of the drought in California? I'd say that's damned urgent right there.
I understand what you're saying BiSB, but what baffles me is that this relatively minor (and positive) announcement has lead to yet another AD bashing thread. This news has no relation to how good the team will be in the fall or how high ticket prices will be, which are 2 biggest problems for most people. The appropriate response should be either "That's nice, now I can check my phone during games" or "Couldn't care less." Instead, its mostly "AHH, Dave Brandon said something! Let me remind everyone how much I hate him!"
I think my general distaste for what Brandon is doing here is acting like these are the major issues for the gameday experience. If we lose every game, not even lightening fast wifi will want to make me pay for tickets.
What do you see as the primary problems they should be fixing? Not trying to be difficult, I'm genuinely curious.
Thank you. It's like DB can't do anything right on this board. I defend him a ton on here (and I don't always agree 100% with what he's done, but I generally like the guy).
You're the one out of touch. In the last year I've gotten 3 surveys on football tickets, their prices and what I want in my Michigan football experience. They're not pulling these ideas out of their asses. They've done legitimate market research and know what will bring more people to games. If Brandon thinks that more wi-fi will get more fans in the stands then it's because there's substantial evidence that says it will. But then there's little you sitting in front of his computer, never having taken an econometrics, statistics or economics course in his life and thinking he knows better than much more substantially paid people with MBAs.
I'll take his thoughts over yours
Mascot in waiting
Will that work?
and all I can say is man, you guys complain a lot.
The team just needs to win games. That's on Hoke, not Brandon. I don't think these gimmicks are necessary (I don't care about wifi). The only thing that should drive you to watching at home on TV is increased prices for a mediocre product.
Hey Dave Brandon
Where is Dave Brandon selling $65 tickets?!
Enjoy it. It's what you chose.
Enjoy it. It's what you chose.