They Leave The Empty Kegs On The Cutting Room Floor

Today’s Slate takes a look at the promotional ads colleges insert into football telecasts. If you’re a college football fan, no doubt you’ve seen these and had a good chuckle over them.

The ads typically run for 30 seconds during halftime. As state-school spokespersons are quick to point out, colleges don’t pay for the airtime—the slots are provided at no cost under most college-football television contracts.
The standard mise-en-scène of the institutional spot will be familiar to any dedicated college-sports watcher: campus greenery, one-on-one pedagogy, chemistry labs, black gowns and mortarboards, and laughing/hugging students of as many colors as possible.
The season’s most memorable institutional spot won’t be playing during a bowl game. Notre Dame will introduce a new ad for the Fiesta Bowl, but the school will have a tough time encapsulating the smug Golden Domer attitude any better than it does in “Candle.” A girl lights candles at her church, ostensibly for many years, until a thick letter arrives from the Notre Dame admissions office. A glance to the skies confirms just who’s responsible for her shot at a “higher education.” Prayer for personal triumph: It’s not just for end zone celebrations anymore.

I’m getting ready for the Sugar Bowl. Go Dawgs!

About Dan Goldgeier

Blogging on AdPulp since 2005, Dan Goldgeier is a Seattle-based freelance copywriter with experience at advertising agencies across the U.S. He is a graduate of the Creative Circus ad school, and currently teaches at Seattle's School of Visual Concepts. In addition, he is a regular columnist for Dan published the best of his columns in a book entitled View From The Cheap Seats: A Broader Look at Advertising, Marketing, Branding, Global Politics, Office Politics, Sexual Politics, and Getting Drunk During a Job Interview. Look for it on Amazon in paperback and e-book editions.


  1. Can you believe that ABC bought the fact that AJ Hawk is dating Brady Quinn’s sister, I heard they made it up as a publicity stunt!

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