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"FTS" Greatest Hits, Volume 1
"FTS" Greatest Hits, Volume 1
Published by Swampy Meadows
"FTS" Greatest Hits, Volume 1

WEST BLOOMFIELD (MI) -- August 30, 1995 was a memorable day at CNN, where I happened to be working at the time. On that date Ted Turner’s global cable news network launched its interactive website, CNN.com. Here is what the home page looked like when it premiered:


None of us in CNN Sales quite knew what to make of our new website. It was definitely cool, but how would we sell it? Who was gonna visit it? Would it eventually make CNN the cable channel obsolete?

It didn’t take long to have our questions answered. I sold the first automotive advertiser on CNN.com, Lincoln Mercury, a web campaign for the launch of the Mercury Mountaineer. They bought banners on two sections of CNN.com—World News and US News. We guaranteed them something like 500,000 page views over the course of their one month buy. They ended up getting five times that many, as two major news stories brought visitors to the site in droves.

The beauty of interactive advertising is that it is trackable. With TV and radio buys, clients never knew who, if anyone, was actually watching their ads. On the web, we could tell them with precision.

Roughly five years later, Greg Bilotta and Joe Lombardi, who at the time ran the old FlyerHoops.com website, sweet talked me into penning a semi-regular blog for their website. I think Lombardi was the one who came up with “From the Swamp” as its title. A couple of years later, FlyerHoops.com went bye-bye (later to be revived by Matt Schwade as FlyerHoops.net) and Chris invited me to bring my little blog over here to UD Pride.

All of this is a roundabout way of introducing you to the “FTS” version of summer reruns -- “FTS" Greatest Hits, Volume 1. Volume 2 will come later, as will some other compilations.

So how does one determine what constitutes the “FTS" Greatest Hits? The same way Mercury did—by how many people clicked on various columns. Y’all voted with your eyeballs over the last 10 years, people. Unfortunately, the UD Pride archives only go back to 2007, so some of the earlier entries are literally lost in space.

Without further ado, let’s get to it!

#10 Here We Go; There We Went
Date published: March 30, 2014
Views: 7,908
Link: http://www.udpride.com/forums/showthread.php?t=25312
Synopsis: This is the gameday column from the Elite Eight tilt vs. Florida that the Elder Swampette and I attended in Memphis. Oddly enuf, as I write this I am wearing my Sweet Sixteen t-shirt from that season. What a great atmosphere, not just in the FedEx Forum, but all over Memphis. UD fans were loud and proud. UD Pride has probably never had as much traffic as it did during those two magical weeks. We need to do this again and soon!

#9 T minus 6:00
Date published: March 26, 2014
Views: 8,257
Link: http://www.udpride.com/forums/showthread.php?t=25231
Synopsis: See what I mean? This piece was written only 4 days earlier, prior to the Sweet Sixteen contest with Stanford, which was also played in Memphis. I apologize in advance, because I’m sure many of the links contained within have expired, but you get the picture -- UD was on the national stage and couldn’t get out of the way of the positive press.

#8 Hoops ‘R’ Us
Date published: June 24, 2008
Views: 8,910
Link: http://www.udpride.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5292
Synopsis: Quite frankly, this one is a bit of a head-scratcher. An off-season piece with nothing of any particular importance gets almost 9,000 page views? Go figure.

#7 Should He Stay or Should He Go?
Date Published: January 29, 2010
Views: 9,817
Link: http://www.udpride.com/forums/showthread.php?t=12740
Synopsis: This one concerns the debate over whether then rising-senior Chris Wright should forego his last year and head to the NBA or stay at UD. Unlike a lot of my other writings, this one has zero links in it. It’s akin to the reliable decision-making process of taking a sheet of paper and writing “pros” on one side and “cons” on the other and listing your thoughts. If you scroll down, there are a variety of comments from UD Pride posters on the subject. Obviously, CW came back and while he has had a cup of coffee or two in The League, he’s still pursuing that NBA dream.

#6 That’s a Fact, Jack
Date Published: January 10, 2008
Views: 10,149
Link: http://www.udpride.com/forums/showth...9680#post29680
Synopsis: Half of those page views were probably from Xavier fans because the primary topic in this one was their boy Brad Redford. And yes, I was dead wrong -- he did win Mr. Basketball in Michigan that year. It happens.

“FTS" Greatest Hits, Volume 2 in a week or two.

That’s it “From the Swamp.”
You can email me at: swampy@udpride.com
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