Yet again, the most wonderful time of year is upon us. College football has returned! With the first weekend of games in the book, the preseason polls have already been shifted to reflect how teams looked playing in actual games, not just speculation. With that said, there wasn’t much difference between the preseason poll and the week two poll, and at this point in the season who can ever say which team is best…but I digress. My team—the Alabama Crimson Tide—moved up a spot to second in the nation, so I’m happy.
A couple years ago before the start of football season I wrote a blog post about the promotional videos universities choose to run during football games every fall. I also shared two of my favorite TV spots from my alma mater, which have both since been retired from airing on TV. Much like ranking teams in the preseason, determining what aspects of a university to feature in a commercial is an inexact science.
Who exactly is the audience? What messages do you want to convey? Which scenery on campus should you showcase? Is an effective commercial simply one that’s memorable? All questions that can be asked about the wonderful 30-second glimpses we get into campuses across the U.S. every year.
With that in mind I decided to have a little fun to see which commercials were, historically, the most popular (based on which had the most views on YouTube when searching “[university] commercial”) for the top five teams in the current AP poll. It was a perfect inexact searching mechanism for an equally inexact pursuit. Ideally, I would have done this for the top ten or more, but I decided that would take too long.
The current top five ranked teams in the AP Poll are: 1) Ohio State University, 2) University of Alabama, 3) Texas Christian University, 4) Baylor University, and 5) Michigan State University. And without further ado, here are the most popular institutional commercials for each, according to YouTube:
Ohio State University

University of Alabama

Texas Christian University

Baylor University

Michigan State University