With the preliminary round of the 2010 NCAA Championships only two days away, school allegiances and rivalries are at an all-time high. Will the Jayhawks stay at number one in the Midwest? Will they square off against Duke in the semi-finals? I sure hope so. Both teams, who enter the tournament holding the top spots in their conferences, proudly hold three championship titles. But that is nothing compared to the University of Kentucky Wildcats, a team with a very respectable seven wins under their belt.
I’ll be watching to see if the Wildcats come out on top again this year but even if you aren’t a basketball fan or your team just didn’t make it this year (Ohio State’s 69-68 victory last week over Michigan in the quarterfinals of the 2010 Big Ten Conference Tournament was heartbreaking to many in the Midwest), there are plenty of other reasons to tune into the NCAA basketball tournament. The tournament- more commonly referred to as the Final Four or March Madness- isn’t just about basketball.
The Super Bowl is the sporting event traditionally associated with buzz-worthy commercials, but March Madness isn’t far behind. In 2008, 19.5 million viewers tuned in to watch the final game between the University of Kansas and the University of Memphis. Advertisers do not want to miss out on an opportunity to target this audience- generally composed of men ages 18-40 with large disposable incomes- and thus they spend a lot of time and money trying to capture viewers attentions. Over the past few years, advertisers have spent an estimated $643.2 million on the men’s tournament, according to sources at the WSJ online.
Team spirit is another great reason to watch the Final Four. Whether you are rooting for your college team wearing sports themed promotional products or simply like to see other people dressed from head to toe with body paint and imprinted apparel, the enthusiasm and intensity is addicting. Not to mention the bragging rights (and cash) that fans of the winning team receive.
Who do you think will go all the way? Fill out a printable bracket or let me know @pinnaclepromos.
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