We're going to be on the air on Thursday night and we have a pretty exciting show in store for you. We'll have Matt Williamson from Scouts Inc., Brad Johansen and the guys from BehindTheSteelCurtain.com on the show. But before we get too far ahead of ourselves, let's take a look back at last week's interview with Scott and Roger from BengalsBlackoutLifters.com.
Jason: Why did you guys start the site?
BBL: I'm sitting in my office the week before the Colts game, and I'm thinking I have to work this coming sunday, by the way, I'm a season ticket holder and I have been for 23 years, and I'm thinking how can I watch this game at work even though it's going to be blacked out? I have NFL Sunday Ticket at home, I have NFL Sunday Ticket To-Go, which means you're supposed to be able to watch it on your PC or your iPad, so I was thinking maybe I could get around the blackout that way, but that doesn't work either. So, I thought it was frustrating. I wanted to watch the game, I was willing to pay money to watch it but it can't be done. So I thought that if I was willing to do that, maybe there would be other Bengals fans out there that didn't want to pay $75 or $80 to go to the game that would be willing to pay something to watch the games at home.
Jason: How much response have you guys gotten since the site went up?
BBL: We've had just over 2,000 hits, I believe, at this point. I think the email confirmation is at 110. So we're not getting the masses to respond at this point.
Jason: Have there been any sizable donations by any companies, individuals or any sports bars at this point?
BBL: Not at this point. I do have one contact with a large bank that's very interested. We feel like we need Channel 12 and Channel 19, who are the TV channels that would benefit from having the Bengals blackouts lifted. We hope to try to contact them. We're really at a point of seeing how much fan interest there is out there because we feel like those are the kinds of numbers that cooperate sponsors are interested in as well.
Dave: What kind of timeline are you thinking about? Are you hoping to have something in place for this season or are you thinking this is a more long-tern project?
BBL: I think it's going to be interesting to see what happens in about three weeks, when we're looking at a blacked out Cleveland Browns game. I have a contact at the Bengals and he's told me that the Pittsburgh game is all but sold out. But the week of Thanksgiving, I think that will be when we start to hear a lot about the blackouts again. I think depending how big of a response we get that week will kind of dictate how quickly we can get something like this in place. So we're looking at it like let's start it, let's build it. If it happens this year, that's great. If it happens next year, that's good too. We feel that as long as the NFL blackouts are in place, we have a purpose here.
Anthony: How hard are you pushing the league, or have you contacted anybody in the NFL office, about the blackout rule being removed? Have you made any attempts there?
BBL: We have not at this point. Basically we've been on some sports shows, we've been interviewed by the newspaper. Tonight I was contacted by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, where a guy there is doing a story on NFL blackouts. I know this is an issue in other cities, but we haven't had any contact with the NFL. We expect that maybe one day the NFL will get rid of this rule and we won't be needed. Maybe the games can go to pay-per-view through cable or through the NFL Sunday Ticket, but in the meanwhile, we're just trying to pull something together to see if we can make something happen.