Free Bobblehead Doll, tie-ins, MLB, LOL, WSJ.com: I’d go for a bobblehead doll. 🙂
Roughly 2.7 million bobbleheads will be handed out at Major League Baseball games by season’s end. Fans have been treated to 110 different variations of the ubiquitous collector’s dolls—the expected (Miguel Cabrera), the vintage (Ozzie Smith), the quirky (announcer Vin Scully) and the downright odd (Mr. Met knitting a scarf bobblehead?). One thing is certain: Fans can expect even more next season.
Looking back through stadium promotions this year, the Count found that a bobblehead giveaway increases a team’s attendance by an average of 4.8% over what the team draws each day of the week (i.e., Mondays compared with other Mondays). To be sure, there are other factors at play here—such as weather, that day’s opponent and who is pitching—but there is enough evidence to suggest the prospect of a free bobblehead will drive a fan to the park.
No doll had a bigger impact than that of former Seattle great Ken Griffey Jr. The Mariners saw 46,027 fans vie to get their hands on one of 20,000 Junior dolls on Aug. 10. This was up almost 50% from the typical Saturday at Safeco Field.
Davidson basketball, Coach Bob McKillop, lists: No surprise!
We’ve already polled college basketball coaches for the most feared recruiters, both assistants and head coaches.
But now it’s time to look at the top X’s and O’s guys in the country, regardless of level. The coaches who scare their counterparts with their ability to diagram plays and have their players carry out those plays.
We polled about two-thirds (around 250) of the Division I head coaches, and some opted to vote more than once. There were more than 300 total votes cast and there was a clear separation at the top.
Michigan State’s Tom Izzo was the runaway winner, with one of his Big Ten rivals finishing in second. Brad Stevens still received plenty of votes (14 in total) despite the fact that he’s now in the NBA, and former UCLA head man Ben Howland also got his share (four votes) even though he’s unemployed.
Izzo is known for his preparation and ability to get his players to execute. He recruits at a high level, but it’s not as though his program has produced a ton of high-level NBA players. He has won a national title and taken the Spartans to a half-dozen Final Four appearances. He’s 30-4 as the higher-seeded team in the NCAA tournament and 18-3 in the second game of a weekend NCAA contest.
Here are the top 25 X’s and O’s head coaches in college basketball (according to the head coaches), with a supporting quote from a peer for each.
5. Bob McKillop, Davidson Wildcats (16)
Record: 452-279 (24 seasons)
NCAA tournament record: 3-7
“He was a smart, crafty, tough player. He coaches the same way. He’s an exceptional situational practice coach.” — Fordham coach Tom Pecora