There are only 23 days until the first Saturday of college football. It is almost my official favorite time of year. To me, the season starting is comparable to how a child feels on Christmas Eve waiting to see what presents Santa leaves under the tree. I cannot wait to see who upsets who, who wins this week, who loses the next. The ups and downs are what make college football so great.
 
Some might say that I am TOO much of a fan…I would disagree with that assumption. To be fair though, I will watch any game.  First and foremost I am a SEC fan (Roll Tide), however if there is a Thursday night game between two mid-major teams on TV, I will watch it. I just love college football.
 
As someone who also works closely with colleges and universities on a variety of communications projects, one of the tangential things that I love about watching college football is seeing the promotional commercials that play during breaks. It’s always interesting to see what angles and messages institutions choose to promote.
 
These promotional spots offer a great chance to tell part of an institutional story to audiences that might not be reached otherwise. Granted, most last 30 seconds at most so the space is limited. And the subject matter of these commercials can be as varied as the University of Oregon’s uniform combinations (that’s a lot for anyone who doesn’t get the reference). And honestly, that’s okay.
 
As someone who also loves the feeling of being on a university campus, I find that these commercials allow me to see what other campuses look like (albeit the prettiest spots on campus). As an outsider to most, I love that. I am allowed to get a glimpse of the institutions playing through a lens greater than just the football field on which the game is being played.
 
What’s the point of this post? I’m not 100% sure there is one. However, maybe if you’re a rabid college football fan like me you will start paying more attention to the commercials each school chooses to air. And if you already do pay attention to these ads, think through what your institution chooses to promote externally and how it compares to what you see during those long time out breaks.
 
And with that, I close with two of my favorite commercials from my Alma Mater, the University of Alabama.