I was thinking about this quote last night when I was watching yet another awful primetime football game. Mark Cuban back in March of 2014 perfectly predicting the future.
“I think the NFL is 10 years away from an implosion,” Cuban said Sunday evening when his pregame conversation with reporters, which covered a broad range of topics, swayed toward football. “I’m just telling you: Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered. And they’re getting hoggy.
“Just watch. Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered. When you try to take it too far, people turn the other way. I’m just telling you, when you’ve got a good thing and you get greedy, it always, always, always, always, always turns on you. That’s rule No. 1 of business.”
Cuban was specifically referring to the NFL’s recently expanding its television package. He considers it a poor business decision for the NFL, which consistently dominates TV ratings, to play games on days other than Sunday and Monday.
Has anyone been more right than this? Everyone is talking about NFL ratings being down and here is Mark Cuban over 2 years ago basically telling you what the future will look like. I remember the quote because at the time I think I even called Cuban an idiot, further proving why he’s the billionaire and I’m the fat blogger.
I wish I had read this back then, as this is something I have been worried and complaining about for quite some time. As a lifelong fan of both NFL and NCAA football, it’s been frustrating that the former has been working overtime to make me fall out of love with it. Commissioner Roger Goodell’s endless interference in the way the game is played is diluting the on-field product, but it’s his pursuit of televised ubiquity that may be his, and the league’s undoing.
To be sure, this season’s antics by some of the NFL players aren’t helping. That’s probably just accelerating a slide that had already started.
More from the Barstool Sports post:
The Quarterback play is awful, there are too many penalties, too many reviews, and way too many commercials. You can deal with it when there are 8 games on at one time but when it’s a stand alone it becomes borderline unbearable. It’s gotten so bad that even the announcers are admitting it live on air.
The TV revenue is what Goodell’s defenders (they still exist) like to point to, but those require a lot of advertising to finance, and as mentioned above, that’s just one of the many things making the games tedious.
For reasons that almost no American football can adequately explain, Goodell has been sending teams to London to play regular season games. He wants there to be a franchise in London. In fact, until this year, he was far more concerned that expatriates in the UK be able to see a game live than fans in Los Angeles. The teams hate the international travel, the fans hate the weird start time, and the games are almost always forgettable even while they’re happening.
NFL fans still love Sundays. If our teams are playing, we like Mondays. The Thursday thing has bugged me from the beginning. It does nothing to improve the game. I would much rather watch my favorite team (the Steelers) on Sunday than on a Thursday. In fact, I’m usually annoyed if they’re in the Thursday game. We’re years into this experiment and I still never think about the Thursday game until after it’s started. It is just more dilution, taking it too far, and facilitating the transition from pig to hog.
When the league isn’t watering down the game, it’s keeping its eye on the important stuff, like making sure a player isn’t creating “breast cancer awareness” during the wrong month. That’s right, in Roger Goodell’s NFL, cancer has commercial value.
This hog may not be in the slaughterhouse yet, but it is moving there as quickly as a hog can. Colin Kaepernick and Co. are pushing it from behind, but it is Roger Goodell who has a rope around its neck and is dragging it forward to an ignominious end.