By Ryan Berenz
Much has been made of President Obama’s address on Thursday (7pm ET) falling just before the NFL season kickoff game between the Green Bay Packers and the New Orleans Saints (8:30pm ET). As much as I would love to spread the idea that Bears’ fan Obama is just trying to stick it to the Packers, that doesn’t seem to be the case.
Now word comes from NBCUniversal that four of their national cable networks — Versus, USA Network, Syfy and G4 — and NFL Network will carry all 90 minutes of the NFL Kickoff 2011 Presented by EA Sports beginning Thursday at 7pm ET. NBC will join NFL Kickoff 2011 in progress when the president’s speech is over, and NBCU’s cable networks will resume their regularly scheduled programming. The Kickoff pregame programming includes musical performances from Kid Rock, Lady Antebellum and Maroon 5. (Deadspin called it the “worst concert of all time.”)
The NBC affiliate here in Milwaukee, WTMJ4, won’t even carry Obama’s speech, knowing that there are plenty of other places to watch the president. And besides, in Wisconsin, people care more about football than the economic future of America.
NBCUniversal’s NFL Kickoff Programming Schedule
Thursday, September 8 (all times ET)
NFL Kickoff 2011
VERSUS, USA, Syfy, G4 and NFL Network
NBC (in progress following speech coverage)
Saints @ Packers
Saturday, September 10
Sunday, September 11
Football Night in America
Sunday Night Football – Cowboys @ Jets