Behind the Scenes @ FOX19 News - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

February 5, 2008

Behind the Scenes @ FOX19 News

Steven Ackermann, News Director Steven Ackermann, News Director

TELEVISION HISTORY--Sunday night's SuperBowl was bound to make the record books one way or another.  A Boston win would have shattered the Dolphin's  old record for the longest undefeated NFL season, but the New York win managed to beat the old record for the most television viewers.  Nielsen estimates the audience at 97.5 million or about 3 million more than the 1996 game when Dallas beat Pittsburgh.  That will translate into something between 42-44 rating points. Here in Cincinnati, the game averaged a 42.9 rating which is about two-thirds of all of the people who were watching TV.

It is still not the most-watched television show in history.  The final episode of M*A*S*H in 1983 holds that record.

Allow me a personal footnote:  My mom is the biggest football fan in the family.  For her, there could be no better ending than Eli Manning's final drive to the endzone.  You see, her loyalties are pretty simple:  If there is a Manning in the game, she's going to root for his team.  You ask why a Cincinnatian would be so loyal to two quarterbacks?  Well, the three of them all graduated from Isidore Newman School in New Orleans.  Of course, not quite at the same time. My Mom graduated with the class of 1927!

The Manning saga extends beyond Eli and his older brother Payton for folks like my Mom.  Archie Manning played virtually his entire NFL career for the New Orleans Saints.  It's never been easy to be a Saints fan (remember the ‘aints?) and was particularly difficult through the Manning years.  With all of that, the Saints have a couple entries in the NFL record book.  They are the only team to score a touchdown before ever executing a regular season play (John Gilliam ran the regular season opening kickoff back for a touchdown) and I think the  Saints still hold the record for the longest field goal (John Dempsey's 63-yard field goal to beat the Detroit Lions in 1970).

My only disappointment last night was Bill Belichick's decision to leave the field before the clock officially ran out.  Oh well. 

GADGETS AND GIZMOS: You will be seeing a lot in the coming months about something we are calling The Big Switch.  If you are not sure what I am talking about, it's the transition to digital television in the United States. Calling it a transition is not quite accurate because all of your favorite (and your not-so-favorite) television stations are already broadcasting a digital channel.  A year from now, we're all going to turn off our old transmitters. 

                                                                   

The new channels already offer a clearer picture and have the ability to deliver the truly spectacular HD pictures that you've been reading about.  Unfortunately, most people are still watching the old channel.  We have a whole page on our website devoted to explaining all of this. 

And, the federal government has an elaborate program to help viewers pay for what they will need.  If you haven't already applied for your converter, here is a link to the website where you can apply.

ELECTION NIGHT: We'll be on TV tonight with results from 20+ states in what amounts to a national primary.  The national cable networks are all advertising "hours and hours" of coverage.  I'm a political junkie, but I am not sure anyone needs "hours and hours" of coverage.    If you would prefer, we'll have American Idol and a brand new episode of House leading up to The Ten O'clock News

Jack and Tricia will have all of the results from "Super Tuesday" and I promise we'll do it all in a one hour show!

LATER THIS WEEK: Tricia takes our All Access Pass up to Dayton and the Air Force Museum on Wednesday night.  And, Thursday night, Jack profiles Buddy LaRosa in this week's Success Story.

Let us know what's on your mind by clicking here.  And, thank you for reading along.

Steve

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