Carol Biliczky

The University of Akron once again will be in the Super Bowl spotlight with a new commercial.

UA’s 30-second “Connected Knowledge” spot will be broadcast before, during and after Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday to Channel 19 WOIO’s regional audience in Northeast Ohio.

WOIO is the Cleveland affiliate of CBS, which is airing the game.

UA traditionally has been the only tax-supported university in Ohio to run a Super Bowl ad. President Luis Proenza is the star once again of the 15th annual commercial.

Wayne Hill, UA associate vice president of marketing, said the university has taken a “multi-channel approach” to driving home its message.

“We’ll use as many outlets as we can to help people understand what ‘connected knowledge’ is,” he said. “The ad captures the creation of knowledge — the working with business and industry that is one of the hallmarks of the university.”

The national cost for 30 seconds of airtime during the game is about $3.8 million this year, up 7 percent from last year. The sports event is expected to reach more than 100 million football (and commercial) fans.

UA’s purchase of airtime in Northeast Ohio will be more modest.

It will spend $31,900 for seven 30-second spots shown before, during and after the game Sunday and for 31 other airings over the next couple of weeks on WOIO.

Another $93,500 will be spent to air the spot on other broadcast stations (WKYC, WEWS and WJW) and a mix of cable programming in the region, as well as DirecTV.

The total number of spots will be 1,069.

The university also will spend another $30,535 for associated print and online commercials.

That is on top of the $85,000 cost of producing the commercial, written at the university and filmed and produced by Be Productions in Columbus.

That brings the total cost to $248,600.

Hill said the university is looking at hiring an outside researcher to help evaluate how the Super Bowl helps to improve awareness and positive perceptions of the university. That has been done in the past, he said.

Like many advertisers, UA is releasing its ad early. Visit for a sneak peek.

Carol Biliczky can be reached at or 330-996-3729.