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Posted on Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 5:57 a.m.

'60 Minutes' segment featuring U-M football in Ann Arbor airs Sunday night

By Cindy Heflin


The Michigan football team takes the field before the game against Northwestern on Nov.10.

Daniel Brenner |

University of Michigan football fans will want to tune into the CBS News program “60 Minutes” Sunday.

Tonight's the night the program will air a segment featuring the Wolverines and possibly scenes from Ann Arbor.

Crews from the program were in Ann Arbor in August and for the first two home games of the year filming for a segment on the business of college football that’s scheduled to air Sunday, said David Ablauf, Associate Athletic Director, Media and Public Relations for the University of Michigan.

A crew also went to U-M’s high-profile, season-opening game against Alabama in Dallas.

"They saw what we do here at Michigan and what our game day experience is like and what we have to offer … and the different things we do to make football an experience that people enjoy,” Ablauf said.

In an article about the segment on the program’s website, University of Michigan Athletic Director Dave Brandon says the school has to more than rely on its reputation:

“If you don't keep pace, if you don't stay competitive, you're going to have a problem," he says. “…We're going to accomplish all the goals that we need to accomplish to keep this department moving ahead.”

Besides Brandon football coach Brady Hoke, quarterback Denard Robinson and safety Jordan Kovacs were also interviewed for the segment, U-M said.Alabama head football coach Nick Saban and the Towson University football program are also featured.

The article notes football programs play an important public relations role for universities, calling them “critical tools in a race to raise revenues, bolster images and ultimately, win bowl games and championships that will attract more students and better players next year.”

Ablauf said the “60 Minutes” crew also got a taste of other sports on campus and other parts of Ann Arbor.

“The got some footage of some of our Olympic sports. … They made some other stops along the way to get some footage of Ann Arbor.”

Among those stops was Zingerman’s Delicatessen. “I think they ate there a few times,” Ablauf said.

The program is scheduled to air at 7:30 p.m. You can watch a preview featuring Towson below:

Cindy Heflin is associate news director for Contact her at 734-623-2572 or or follow her on Twitter.



Mon, Nov 19, 2012 : 5:35 a.m.

Even Brandon said the model is broken. I graduated from Purdue. Even if we were able to compete with Michigan and fill our 62,000 seat stadium, we are still about 50,000 short of Michigan's average gate. And guess where that money goes? Facilities, recruiting, etc. Purdue has beat Michigan about 5 times since Canham hired Bo. To fix college sports (D-I football and basketball) you need a level playing field like the NFL, meaning a draft, total revenue sharing and payment of the players. Like major league baseball, you give each drafted player a scholarship to use when he wants, where he wants and provided he gets accepted under normal academic standards, when his playing commitment is through. That eliminates all the cheating in recruiting and all the tawdry aspects of college sports. I would also advocate licensing out the name, logo, etc. and leasing the facilities to a separate ownership group of alums, much like the Green Packers are owned by the community. Of course the Michigans and Notre Dames of the world and their fans would never accept the above because they are the "haves." When I was in college in the early 70's an article appeared in the newspaper about the unchanging nature of the top 15-20 schools. It noted they were the same as 20 years ago (1953-55). The names? Michigan, Ohio State, Alabama, Texas, Notre Dame, USC, Oklahoma, Nebraska, etc. Sound vaguely familiar? BTW, Purdue athletics is one of six programs that were PROFITABLE in 2010 and which did not receive a subsidy from the University (in fact, they paid $3mm of their Big Ten contract revenue to the University). Of course that means that we have a much smaller budget, sponsor fewer sports and pay our coaches about half what Michigan can afford to pay theirs.


Mon, Nov 19, 2012 : 5:23 a.m.

The Towson St. guy was a buffoon. Does he really think the people who tune in to watch LSU are going to want to go to Towson? By his reasoning, Christianity got popular because they were facing off against the Lions and got great pub. Somehow Chicago, Washington University, MIT, Cal Tech, Emory and many other schools became well known and do just fine without big time college football. When it comes to donations, people like winners and not losers. No one gave Towson a dime for that moral victory over LSU. This is an old issue. Google Robert M. Hutchins and Sports Illustrated to read his essay on why Chicago dropped out of football when he was President. The same issues apply today as when he wrote the essay - in 1954!

David Briegel

Mon, Nov 19, 2012 : 2:12 a.m.

Nice puff piece for Dave Brandon.


Mon, Nov 19, 2012 : 1:59 a.m.

The story about the baby being born and seeing the "M Go Blue" banner was pretty good.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 5:01 p.m.

Universities exist to educate tomorrow's leaders, not to train the next generation of NFL players. I am deeply saddened when i see so much emphasis on football and so little on what really matters - academic achievement. I strongly suspect that most of us would be horrified to learn about the post-college lives of the 90+% of the graduating senior football players who do not make it to the NFL. Given the amount of time they will have devoted to 'play', they probably lack a meaningful education and probably do quite poorly in life.


Mon, Nov 19, 2012 : 12:43 a.m.

So personal experience is a substitute for statistics. Okay, I can play that game too. None of the former football players I have "interacted with" played in the NFL. They all went to graduate school. The NFL is not the only goal for most of these players. Even if it is, the ones that I have "interacted with" had other plans as well.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 9:54 p.m.

@dairy6...Let's get a couple things straight. First, I am not your bro. Second, you want data go find it. I have interacted with and know many current and former student athletes and their success makes people like you jealous.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 8:32 p.m.

Football is not just for the football players. There is a lot of competition for students across the country. A successful football program promotes awareness. It also contributes to a good student life experience.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 7:57 p.m.

Please provide data to back up your blanket assertion about the success of players. If you present an argument you need facts to back it up. Thats college 101 bro.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 6:13 p.m.

Pretty narrow to assume all college football players are only interested in making it to the NFL. People that know anything about college football or know the players would not be horrified to learn about their post-college lives. I would bet their success rate in the given profession they choose is as good or better than the general student population. Most of these student athletes bust their butts on the field and off it in the classroom.

Steve Krause

Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 2:03 p.m.

Good for U of M and the 25 or fewer big-time college football programs that either make money or break even. But I hope this story tonight also points out the downside of places like EMU (where I work) throwing good money after bad year after year after year.


Mon, Nov 19, 2012 : 2:08 a.m.

Oh, it points out the downside, Steve. But you'll never get a serious discussion about this at EMU. That team can go 2-10 every year for all eternity, and they'll still be giving away cars to get people to attend. It's a senseless tax on the students and on Michigan taxpayers.

Craig Lounsbury

Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 11:30 p.m.

actually there are about 100 plus "prime examples" of schools that don't operate in the black.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 2:09 p.m.

Good post. If a school cannot be financially self sufficient with their sports programs, then those schools have no business playing Division 1 sports. EMU is a prime example.