Those who have attended past Letter of Intent parties may recall that Boise State Coaches provide insight in regard to the day’s signees. It is an event that many who follow recruiting cherish. This years event however, comes with a change.
The change in radio stations last year left some doubt surrounding the 2009 event. Bronco Sports released a statement on January 16th regarding the event. Most recently the event was held at the venue formally known as the Big Easy, with no cost of admission. Of course food and beverages were available for purchase. The Blue and Orange Store and the Bronco Shop were amongst the venders present during the show.
Last year, with the permission of KTIK I was allowed to stream live video over the Internet for fans outside the Boise area. Though I was more than happy and willing to do so again, KIDO has yet to return a single phone call or email regarding this as a possibility in 2009. Update, I will provide streaming video of KTIK’s LOI event at the Buffalo Wild Wings in Meridian, Idaho.
The 2009 event with the Coaches and signees will cost Bronco Fans Event $30 per person, which includes a Football Tailgate Style Buffet and a Bronco Football Souvenir Gift. The event will be held at the Stueckle Sky Center on Wednesday February 4th, starting at 3:00 p.m.. KIDO will be broadcasting the event live on AM 580 locally. No word on a video stream of the show from Bronco Sports. Bronco Vision will be broadcasting the event, but at a price of a Year or Monthly Package.
Not to break with tradition KTIK will produce its 12th Annual show live from the recently opened Buffalo Wild Wings in Eagle Meridian, Idaho. They will have the usual cast of characters, but for obvious reasons this years show by KTIK will lack Boise State Coaches and the signees.
The change in venues should not come as a surprise to Bronco Fans as the change in the radio contract with Boise State has brought about many changes. Despite not having broadcast rights to games, KBOI continued to provide a pre and post game broadcast. Paul J Snider, who broadcast games for 35 years was replaced by Bob Behler. Fan loyalty has been split as a result and this final change may be hard for many hardcore Bronco Fans to swallow.
These changes are a result in Boise State Athletics asserting more of a role how Boise State Football is covered. Post 2007 Fiesta Bowl, Boise State has gone as far as to shutdown media access to practices. Limit attendance to practices fans and family of the players. In 2006 during the Blue & Orange game Boise State held a post game autograph session, however since that year no such session has been held.
It would seem as the Broncos have become more of a “Big Time” program, Boise State is taking advantage of each and every money making opportunity. This past year Boise State began to charge fans $5.00 for game programs. The LOI event is another such opportunity:
“This is something we’ve had in the works about Boise State Football being the beneficiary of the Letter of Intent party”
“Our goal with the $30 is to make it affordable for fans, but show the value of the event,”
“you’d probably get to spend $20 to $25 at another establishment anyway.” Says Brad Lorrando.
Seating for the event should gross Boise State $12,000. Without knowing the cost of food and labor it is safe to say Boise State should add a few thousand to the bottom line.
Most fans I have spoken to are indifferent regarding the cost of entry to the LOI event. I personally don’t see a $30 ticket price as a deterrent for hardcore Bronco Fans. The location is a definite upgrade over previous years. On the flip side the change in venue, radio station and ticket price may leave fans feeling Boise State is becoming a little less “blue collar”, I being one of them.
Credit J Bates of KBCI for quotes.