Yesterday after(in most places) the early NFL game on Fox there was the debut of UFC on Fox Primetime. It had a lead in from Fox's post game show "The OT." I thought this was cool when it was first announced until the week got closer and I realized what it was going against.
Patriots vs. Steelers was the biggest game of the weekend and is one of the biggest games of the season. It was also CBS' "Game of the Week" so it was shown to most of the country. For all of those reasons most people switched off from their early game to this and the lead in did nothing. The ratings seem to bare that out since the part of the game that shows up in the primetime ratings had 25 million people watching. I haven't seen the ratings for the UFC on Fox Primetime(I did search), but It couldn't have been good. I would be shocked if more than 2 million people watched it.
So if it does tank I want to let everyone know not to freak out. It would have likely failed at it's plan to drum up some interest, because November 12th is a hell of a date.
Quick Sidenote: Look at how the pregame show for the Sunday Night game gets 15 million viewers and we all get excited if a Prelim gets 2 million people to watch. The NFL is a beast.
If the fight was next weekend it would be be even more terrible. I'm assuming they, and the promoters of Pacquiao-Marquez III, scheduled around it for another big game:
#1 LSU vs. #2 Alabama will be next Saturday and the entire sports world will be focused on that game all this week and that night. For those not familiar with college football it is gonna be the biggest college game of the year besides the National Championship. These are the top two teams in the country and both belong to the most prestigious conference in college football. They both have destroyed top ten teams on the road in front of 80,000-100,000 opposing fans booing them. These two teams also have players that any coach in the country would kill for. Over half of the players on the field will end up in the NFL. With most teams they're happy if they got 3-5 future pros.
On top of his glorious cake of awesomeness there is a rivalry built in because of the coach of Alabama left LSU after winning a National Title to go to the NFL. Les Miles was his replacement, and won a National Title with "Saban's team." Eventually Saban came back to college after Alabama threw a boatload of money at him(and he was failing with the Dolphins). He came back to Alabama and won a National Championship for them a couple years ago. So this game has EVERYTHING that you'd want in a big time college football game.
November 12th is different however. Here is what the the fight will be going against:
6:00 PM ET San Diego State at Colorado State
7:30 PM ET Maryland vs. Notre Dame* NBC
8:00 PM ET Western Kentucky at No. 1 LSU
8:00 PM ET Fresno State at New Mexico State
8:00 PM ET UCF at Southern Miss
8:00 PM ET East Carolina at UTEP
10:00 PM ET UNLV at New Mexico
10:15 PM ET Hawaii at Nevada
In simple terms not a goddamn thing. There is also no baseball, no NASCAR, and most importantly no NFL. The only interesting things happening that night is UFC on Fox and the Pacquiao-Marquez III fight and the UFC isn't competing with that. So all Fox has to do is get everyone to remember that it is coming on that night and it should get a monster rating. Unfortunately Fox doesn't run NCAA games so they can't hype it all day like they've been doing with their other properties.
So if the Primetime show tanks then don't worry about the actual event. Fox has been doing a fantastic job promoting it and Cain and Junior seem to be going completely unopposed that night. If they're smart, and they aren't, then ESPN will be hyping that night as a "fight night" hyping both sports up.