NBC Olympic CoverageI can’t help but get frustrated when I think about how NBC is letting down America with their coverage of the 2006 Torino Olympic Games. It has been anything but impressive.

A testament to this poor coverage is how few Americans are feeling a compulsive need to watch the games every night. In fact, this Olympics has one of the lowest television ratings, when compared to past Olympic coverages. I think there are certainly other factors involved, besides NBC, such as the other networks actually putting up a fight this year with American Idol and other shows, America hasn’t been winning as many high-profile medals as expected, plus I think as a nation we are feeling less patriotic these days. All valid reasons for not running to flip on the Olympics every night, but I’d like to place the crux of the blame on NBC.

Their coverage of the games has been boring to say the least. The commentary during events is shockingly unprofessional, the athlete interviews are wooden, the backstories – where they tell us about the athlete’s past – is more focused on which other athlete or celebrity they are currently dating, which other athlete they don’t get along with, their latest modeling shoot, and their partying habits, instead of informing us about their training since they were 8, their passion and drive to win gold, and family connections. NBC has turned the Olympics into a soap opera.

None of the reporters or analysts seem happy to be there. They don’t seem excited to be at the Olympic games. And that reflects on the American viewing audience. I WANT to be excited. I WANT to be cheering my country on.

I just wish NBC was covering the Olympics better. I think back to the 2000 games in Sydney, Australia. That coverage was amazing. People were running home every night to tune into the games, and screaming at their televisions as they cheered on their favorite athletes. And this rant is certainly not aimed at any one reporter or event, though I could write an entire blog on the reasons Robert Quinlan Costas should never be on television again…

After these games, NBC needs to sit down and rethink how they cover the Olympics. There was a very special ingrediant missing this year and I think because of this, they’ve let down their country.