As it prepares to kick off its fourth straight year of Saturday college football coverage, Fox Sports is calling on a triumvirate of higher powers to promote its broadcast slate.
Beginning Monday, Fox will roll out its new "Honor Thy Saturday" campaign, a $10 million initiative that includes buys on national cable networks and a number of high-profile digital outlets.
At the heart of the promotional effort is a series of 30-second spots from Pereira & O'Dell featuring the Football Gods, a fearsome threesome of former gridiron greats Eric Dickerson, William "The Refrigerator" Perry and Brian Bosworth.
WATCH: "Honor Thy Saturday" (Piñata)
WATCH: "Honor Thy Saturday" (Pool)
Perched at the peak of a smashmouth Mount Olympus, the three legends render judgment upon hapless fans who fail to observe the college football Sabbath, as it were. The wrath of the Gods is a sight to behold: A suburban dad who erroneously informs his pals at a backyard kids' party that "the game's not on yet" is transformed into a piñata -- whereupon he is immediately set upon by a husky lad wielding a baseball bat. In another spot, a bewildered mortal who accidentally blows off football to help his wife arrange a yard sale is turned into one of those disconcerting cymbal-clicking stuffed monkeys.
A third spot features a football-denying dilettante in a hotel pool who feels the burn (literally) after the deities have had their way with him.The spots are being positioned as a jocular reminder that the Fox broadcast net and its cable sports channel FS1 carry a 14-week lineup of Saturday Pac-12, Big 12 and Conference USA games -- a fact that may be lost on viewers who've grown accustomed to flipping between ABC, CBS, ESPN, NBC and various regional sports nets and conference-affiliated channels.
The "Honor Thy Saturday" spots are set to roll out just days before Fox gets its season started with the opening game of the Jim Harbaugh Era at Michigan. The former All-American quarterback returned to his alma mater in December; his first challenge as head coach is to lead his charges past Utah in Salt Lake City. The Big Ten-Pac-12 showdown kicks off Thursday night at 8:30 p.m. EDT on FS1.