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Outback Bowl Makes Record Payout To Schools, $28 Million ImpactJune 23, 1999
Tampa, FL -- With all the numbers in and the evaluations done, bowl officials learned what they already suspected, the 1999 Outback Bowl was the most successful in the game's thirteen year history. That reality was further supported recently when the bowl issued payouts to the Big Ten and Southeastern Conferences totaling more than $4 million, and calculated it's economic impact on the Tampa Bay area to be approximately $28 million.
The payouts, which are distributed to the participating teams (Penn State & Kentucky) and their other conference member schools, were a record for the bowl. In order to make these payouts the non-profit bowl realized record local support and sold-out 66,000 seat Raymond James Stadium producing the bowl's second largest crowd.
The economic impact of the bowl was estimated using information from fan surveys and other available spending data. More than 45,000 out-of-market visitors accounted for about 39,000 room nights in Hillsborough & Pinellas County hotels. Over 89% of visitors rated their experience "very good" or "excellent" and 88% of fans surveyed said they plan to return to Tampa Bay within one year.
In addition, the international exposure surrounding the bowl game telecast and a half-hour TV special (aired nationally on ESPN) benefitted the local tourism industry. The Outback Bowl received a 4.8 national TV rating on ESPN, was heard on 200 radio affiliates nationwide and distributed a record 592 media credentials for the game. TV affiliates from four cities alone (two in each team market) produced about 200 news segments on the bowl and surrounding events. "At least three stations did live TV specials from Ybor City on New Year's Eve," notes Mike Schulze, Director of Communications for the bowl. "There is no question this was a tremendous year overall," notes Outback Bowl President & CEO Jim McVay. "Obviously our tie-in with the Big Ten and SEC, and bringing in Penn State and Kentucky generated a lot of excitement in this community."
Bowl officials are currently busy making plans for the upcoming year. Outback Bowl 2000 will be the first sporting event of the new millennium with a 11 A.M. kickoff on New Year's Day.
Bowl sponsors received plenty of recognition. Leading the way was title sponsor Outback Steakhouse whose logo/name along with the Outback Bowl logo was seen a total of 286 times during the international ESPN game telecast. for a combined 15:45 of air time (excluding commercials) worth $945,000. Other bowl sponsor logos were seen 101 times for a combined 3:25 of air time valued at $205,000.