In addition to obsessing over MMA, I am also a huge fan of the Chicago Cubs and the teams of my alma mater, the University of Missouri. Imagine my dismay when I looked at the television schedules for this weekend.
9:00 p.m. ET, CBS: Elite XC Saturday Nights Fights
9:00 p.m. ET, ESPN: Missouri at Nebraska
10:00 p.m. ET, TBS: Chicago Cubs at Los Angeles Dodgers
Though that spells a lot of DVRing and catching things online for me, it could spell trouble for Elite XC's ratings. They have championed the idea of bringing MMA to the casual fans, but casual fans tune in when they're not interested in watching something else. The first fight night on CBS had very little competition from the sports world -- just one hockey playoff game, and baseball early enough in the season that the games aren't must-watch -- and that contributed to its success.
This Saturday, Elite XC has top-notch competition. The Cubs in the playoffs are ratings gold on their own. Add in a beloved franchise from the second largest market in the country, and baseball will likely pull in huge numbers. Missouri football is ranked third or fourth, depending on the poll, has a Heisman trophy candidate in Chase Daniel, and has a high-scoring, fun-to-watch offense. ABC, ESPN2 and Fox Sports will also have Saturday night college football games. That's quite a few different sports offerings that will siphon off casual fans from Elite XC. Here is where they will find out if their PR blitz over the past few weeks worked.