Exclusive: Biden campaign to air ad aimed at Black voters during college football game

Jacob Snow/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

(WASHINGTON) -- President Joe Biden's re-election campaign is kicking off a new TV advertisement in the heat of the college football season, with the ad set to air during the University of Colorado Buffaloes and University of Southern California Trojans game Saturday.

First shared with ABC News, the TV spot zeroes in on the Biden White House's investments into racial and economic equity for Black Americans.

"Getting ahead means getting the same chance to succeed as everyone else. It's why on his first day, President Biden signed an executive order to address racial inequity, working to narrow the racial wealth gap by creating millions of new, good paying jobs and more funding for black businesses," a narrator says.

The narrator continues: "But it's also lowering the cost of living, including health premiums, prescription drugs, and the cost of insulin. Getting ahead with the president, Joe Biden, who is putting in the work for black America."

The 30-second ad, titled "Get Ahead," is part of the campaign's big ticket $25 million investment, which includes the largest and earliest re-election ad-buy any campaign has placed in Hispanic and African American media outlets. A source familiar with planning tells ABC News the Biden campaign intends to pepper those advertisements throughout news, entertainment and sports adjacent programming, including the NFL, NBA and NCAA programming in select markets.

The campaign targeting high-viewership sporting events was first put into practice during the NFL season opener earlier this month. These various ad placements are part of their broader plan to aggressively invest in battleground states like Arizona, Nevada, Michigan, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Georgia.

The ad will air in the Atlanta market, one of the largest African American media markets in the country, in efforts to reach Black fans who are tuning into Colorado games at high margins. That spiked viewership comes thanks, in part, to the popularity of University of Colorado's newest football coach Deion Sanders.

The University of Colorado's first three games of the season rated 77% higher among Black viewers, making up 23% of the audience for those games, compared to 15% for non-Colorado games, per ESPN research -- a figure that doesn't go unnoticed by Biden's re-election campaign. The number of African American viewers tuning in from the Atlanta area is helping to drive viewership numbers two-to-three times larger than a typical high profile college football game when Colorado is playing, according to data from the Biden campaign.

"The Coach Prime phenomenon reaches well beyond Boulder, CO and well beyond the traditional college football fanbase. It just so happens that many among the millions of fans tuning in every Saturday to watch Colorado football represent the core coalition of voters who were so integral to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris's victory in 2020," Biden for President communications director Michael Tyler said in a statement to ABC News.

"So as millions more tune in Saturday afternoon, we're making sure that we're tapping into moments like these and presenting audiences with President Biden's historic record of accomplishment for Black families," he added.

After the Buffaloes' first win of the season last September, Sanders spoke candidly about the racism he -- and his team -- are up against.

"We're doing things that have never been done, and that makes people uncomfortable," Sanders said. "When you see a confident Black man sitting up here talking his talk, walking his walk, coaching 75% African Americans in the locker room, that's kind of threatening. 'Oh, they don't like that.' But guess what? We're going to consistently do what we do. Because I'm here and 'ain't going nowhere."

Only 14 black coaches currently head NCAA Division I football teams.

Black voters were critical in Biden's victory over former President Donald Trump in 2020, supporting him in overwhelming margins, 87%-12% per ABC News exit polls. Maintaining that coalition will be critical to his re-election efforts, too. A New York Times/Siena Poll conducted in July, still shows that 60% of Black Americans currently approve of Biden's job performance.

ABC News' Fritz Farrow contributed to this report.

Friday, September 29, 2023 at 4:09PM by Brittany Shepherd, ABC News Permalink