Why does Boise State football play so late?

Who decides what time the Broncos kick off?

Boise State football fans have been talking a lot about how BSU seems to always have late kickoffs, but is it intentional?

In short, yes.

Boise State actually doesn't get to decide what time their games kickoff, that decision is actually made by ESPN.

A lot of fans have been there, having to stay up late to see kickoff and staying up even later to watch through the end of the game. Last week’s game didn't end till after midnight, but Boise State President Dr. Bob Kustra says there is a good reason behind it.

MORE: Broncos fend off Cougars' fourth-quarter attack to beat WSU in home opener

The Broncos have a contract with ESPN to have their games on the main channels, ESPN and ESPN 2.   

The University could have the network move their games to an earlier kickoff, but that would mean BSU games would be streamed online instead of having them on TV, something a lot of fans agree wouldn't be their preference.

The truth is that Boise State is competing with power conference teams with large national followings for TV time, and ESPN has no problem letting Boise State walk away from the network if they wanted to take their business elsewhere.

President Kustra says being on ESPN, even if it's a little later than fans would like, is important because it helps grow the appeal of not just the athletics program, but the school as a whole.

"We understand what this is all about," said Kustra. "We understand that you do your recruiting from ESPN and the way you get on TV. We know that you build your enrollment from students across the west from that most important ESPN exposure."

President Kustra acknowledged reports of season tickets being down again this year. Although that is true, he points out that season ticket sales across college football are down. 

Boise State still would like to join a power conference in the future, which could help with TV flexibility, but they are in no rush to do anything. 

The ESPN-BSU contract runs through 2019. The only reason both parties wouldn’t resign is if Boise State did manage to join a power conference that has its own TV network, like the PAC-12. For now though, Kustra says the school is more than happy to just stick with ESPN.          

“The PAC-12 Network is doing very well right now, so I’m not so sure it would be a great advantage to deal with the PAC-12 Network at the moment,” said Kustra. “I think ESPN is a big driver of who watches college football on weekends. So whether it’s the PAC-12 or the Mountain West, I still think ESPN is going to be a major player in how Boise State builds its football program and builds out the entire university.

The Broncos have this weekend off but will travel to Corvallis, Oregon September 24 to play Oregon State. 

Bronco Roundup Game Day will air live on KTVB from 9 to 10 a.m. Saturday.


KTVB is celebrating 10 years as the official station for Bronco nation, by giving away tickets to every home game this season! 

Download the Bronco Roundup app and enter by Wednesday night to win a pair of season tickets.  If you already have the Bronco Roundup app, make sure you enter through the app to be eligible. 

Copyright 2016 KTVB


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment