It’s been almost a week since the only Spring Game in Nebraska football history was canceled, but we have some interesting news for you to get that critical football fix you were denied last weekend. On Monday, ESPN will announce that for the first time ever, the mega-sports network will film a College GameDay commercial on a university campus, and guess which team will be featured in that commercial?
Not so fast, my friends. The answer rests with you, Big Red fans, and just how active and interactive you can be with social media and participating in an ESPN fan voting contest that runs from Monday, April 23 (noon ET) through Wednesday, May 2(11:59 p.m. ET). Our advice is this: When the bell rings at noon Monday (ET), prepare to jump on your computer or pounce on your smartphone and vote for your favorite team in this unique promotion among 120 FBS football programs that agreed to be part of this campaign.
Please be an electonric catalyst. Make every connection you can with family, friends and fellow football fanatics and ask them to join you in voting once a day, every day, throughout this 10-day campaign. We list links at the bottom of this column, so you can help bring GameDay to Lincoln for what would be a first-of-its-kind ad spot that will be filmed this summer on the campus of whatever school wins the contest.
Fans Can Generate Exposure, Excitement
How cool would it be to see GameDay studio host Chris Fowlerand college football analysts Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corsoand Desmond Howardfilm a commercialon the Nebraska campus, home of the only stadium in the history of college football to sell out every home game for 50 consecutive years? Can you imagine Nebraska ... in the heat of the summer ... with real students, real fans and real cheerleaders playing There Is No Place Like Nebraska with real trombones and tubas for a national spot to promote College GameDay?
Think of the exposure, the excitement, the enthusiasm and electricity ... all kinds of elements that can tie back to excellence, even in terms of recruiting.This is one challenge clearly in the hands of Husker fans, not players nor coaches. It’s a chance for Big Red fans everywhere to shine, and the ESPN marketers behind this massive promotion will be surprised if Nebraska doesn’t live up to its rabid reputation when the chips are down.
“When I think Big Red fans, I think loyalty,” said Peter Mulally, a spokesperson for the ESPN College Gameday marketing team. “This contest is about communicating a larger message, and Husker fans are definitely up to that challenge.”
This Isn’t Nebraska’s First Online Rodeo
A year ago, Nebraska did not win a similar ESPN poll to select a favorite mascot. We did not win, but our Internet team has circled the wagons and honed in on a solid yet creative process that can take Nebraska from a 2011 finalist to a 2012 fan poll winner.
We based this optimism on Nebraska’s performance in previous national online polls. If I’ve learned one thing in five years here, Husker fans are proactive and relentless in their online voting. Proof in point: An ESPN online poll to determine the best college football teams in history and the prominence Nebraska’s 1971 and the 1995 Husker teams in that poll.
The Big Red fan base has a well-deserved reputation of rallying each other to support a belief-driven cause. Consider how Husker fans responded in online votes that helped Rex Burkhead winthe national Uplifting Athletes Award. We asked Mulally about who came up with ESPN’s latest campaign and how the network will promote it. We also asked him about the impact on social media and what he considers to be the most creative parts of GameDay. We’ll share those insights with you Monday morning before this campaign leaves the launching pad at noon.
Internet, Mobile, Facebook, Twitter Links
We know how eager Husker fans are. We know it’s difficult for you to read something and not have the links you need to do what you need to do before kickoff.
So here they are, locked and loaded for a Nebraska online sprint straight down the field: