Barry Switzer’s backyard cabana has inspired a business venture that enters its second college football season. Watching a ballgame, digitally, with a famous coach.
Coaches Cabana opens its second season with 14 coaches set to view every game of the school for whom they’re most associated.
The premise: While watching games on television, fans can tune in online to interact with iconic coaches.
Switzer, along with Sports Animal host Mark Rodgers, will be viewing OU games from his backyard cabana.
Pat Jones, along with retired Tulsa World columnist Dave Sittler, will be viewing OSU games from the Hideaway Pizza in Tulsa.
Last season, the Coaches Cabana launched for seven OU games at Switzer’s house, plus Switzer and Jackie Sherrill were together in Jerry Jones’ suite at the Cotton Bowl for the OU-Texas A&M game.
“The key thing, emails and tweets are sent in,” Switzer said. “We answer those things right there.”
Switzer said he got communication from the 45th Infantry Division in Afghanistan. “Hell, I don’t know what damn time in the morning over there, they’d tweet us, email us,” Switzer said. “We’d monitor, talk back to ‘em.
“Sitting there in my cabana, like watching a game with the coach. One camera on everyone in the room. Me and Mark carrying on , banter about the game.”
The webcast is a few seconds difference from the television, which Switzer said makes no difference. “We don’t have to stay at the pace the game is played at,” Switzer said.
The coaches signed up, with their twitter handles:
• Barry Switzer (Oklahoma), @Barry_Switzer
• Pat Jones (Oklahoma State), @CoachPatJones
• Jackie Sherrill (Texas A&M), @jackiesherrill
• Fred Akers (Texas), @Coach_Akers
• John Fourcade (LSU), @John_Fourcade
• Johnny Majors (Tennessee), @Coach_Majors
• Ray Goff (Georgia), @Coach_RayGoff
• Galen Hall (Florida), @CoachGalenHall
• Danny Ford (Clemson), @CoachDannyFord
• Milt Tenopir (Nebraska), @NUPipeline
• Max Howell (Mississippi), @CoachMaxHowell
• Jay Paterno (Penn State), @JayPaterno
• Bill Oliver (Alabama), @CoachOliver1
• Jack Crowe (Auburn), @CoachJackCrowe
Coaches Cabana has teamed with Comcast and yahoo.com. Find coaches cabana on yahoo.com, and the portal appears with 14 icons of games and times.
Rivals.com will be doing a halftime show for each cabana webcast, focused on recruiting.
Switzer said that last season, he had guests pop in – Brian Bosworth, Billy Sims, Joe Washington.
“I have ‘em sit down in the chair, it’s like watching the game at my house,” Switzer said. “That type of conversation. We carry on with whoever comes in. Still talk about the game and what’s happening.
“Makes it more interesting. If the game gets out of hand, we make it fun, then get into other things. I tell stories, recruiting stories, get into the tweets and emails.
“It’s an interactivity, watch the game with the old coach.”