Baylor hasn’t seen anything like the Moonlight Madness event happening at the Ferrell Center this Friday since 2003. It should be fun for spectators and athletes alike, and it will give the university more national television exposure.
The problem is that you didn’t hear anything about it until last Wednesday.
Since last Wednesday, Baylor Athletics have attempted to advertise Moonlight Madness, a one-hour program hosted by the men’s basketball team beginning at 7 p.m. Friday at the Ferrell Center.
Festivities include a dunk contest and a 3-point shootout, the latter of which will also include four students working with the players.
Footage from Baylor’s Moonlight Madness will also be included in ESPNU’s “Midnight Madness,” a four-hour program that will feature analysts talking about the upcoming men’s college basketball season. On-site analysts will record segments from 11 schools; ESPN’s Fran Fraschilla will broadcast from the Ferrell Center.
The recording from the Ferrell Center won’t be shown on live television, as Midnight Madness doesn’t start until 8 p.m. CDT on Friday, but it will be incorporated into the program. In other words, Baylor will be showcased on national television with a handful of other teams.
It’s commendable that Baylor is regarded highly enough to earn an appearance on this nationally televised program. Efforts to further integrate students, like the contest that will allow four students to play in the 3-point shootout, are also great ideas from Baylor athletics.
Unfortunately, it might be too little too late.
Moonlight Madness occurs the Friday of fall break. This wasn’t so much a choice by Baylor as it was ESPN’s scheduling, so we cannot criticize the timing of the event.
It would have made sense, however, to get the word out sooner about the event, even if the exact date wasn’t yet set.
One Baylor basketball player tweeted on Sept. 25, “We have a midnight madness this year…#winning.” Obviously Baylor knew about plans to host a men’s basketball event at least a week and a half before officially announcing it.
It is understandable not to have had the logistics determined until Oct. 5, but Baylor missed an opportunity to get excitement generated earlier. Even if it were advertised as “Time to be announced,” it would have given students additional time to consider attending Moonlight Madness.
Of course avid supporters of Baylor athletics have no problem shuffling around plans to be at the Ferrell Center on Friday. But for casual fans, changing fall break plans with a week and a half’s notice is difficult.
Timing aside, Baylor has done a poor job of making Moonlight Madness’ presence known on campus.
There are no posters, and all the student body has received is four emails from the Baylor marketing staff about the 3-point contest.
Baylor athletics’ e-mail newsletter, The Growler, also failed to mention Moonlight Madness in its Oct. 5 edition, the same day Moonlight Madness was announced.
If Baylor wants more students to buy into supporting its teams, it has to reach out to those students. It is not getting the job done for Moonlight Madness.