Spanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sports media…
Charles Barkley: Matt Yoder of Awful Announcing writes that Barkley says he never will work at ESPN. Until, of course, he does. From an interview with Dan Patrick.
On whether ESPN has ever offered him a job…
“They call me every year, but I would never go there. Number one they work their guys too hard, but also I think they manufacture stories. They manufacture controversies.”
On Dan Patrick joking that he could channel Skip Bayless…
“The next sound you’ll hear is me killing myself.”
Fox Sport 1: John Ourand of Sports Business Daily reports Fox Sports execs like the trends for the new network, although there’s still a long, long way to go.
Six months later, though, it’s clear that Fox Sports 1 isn’t ESPN — not
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Chuck Garfien had a surprise for me during Comcast SportsNet Chicago’s Sports Talk Live Thursday. While discussing my new book, Babe Ruth’s Called: The Myth and Mystery Behind Baseball’s Greatest Home Run, he showed a clip of Frank Thomas’ recent visit to Coopertown.
Lo and behold, there was the new Hall of Famer looking at Ruth’s actual bat from the Called Shot. Then donning white gloves, he swung another one of Ruth’s bats. It had notches in it from Ruth recording his homers. Very cool.
Here is the link to the video.
Also, while on the publicity front, here is a link to my interview with Corey McPherrin at Fox 32 this week.
And many thanks to Ron Kaplan of the Baseball Bookshelf for doing a podcast on my book.
In the intro, Kaplan writes:
Forgive me if I
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Earlier this week, I did a USA Today story on 70-plus announcers/analysts who still are thriving in the business. Naturally a main focus was on Dick Vitale, 74 going on 17.
While talking to Vitale, he told a great tale on how he reluctantly got into broadcasting after being fired from the Detroit Pistons. It turns out a couple legends helped plant the seeds.
Here is video of that first ESPN game, DePaul-Wisconsin in 1979.
Here’s Dickie V on how he wound up behind the microphone.
The last game I coached (for Detroit) was in Lexington. We were playing Michigan (in the NCAA Sweet 16). We had a good team.
We’re at practice and there are three guys in the stands. Two of them are Curt Gowdy and John Wooden. I’m saying, “What is this?”
The third guy comes … Continue Reading
During my many years covering golf, it always was a thrill to know I was sharing the press room with Dan Jenkins. I know many of my colleagues felt the same way.
Looking forward to reading the great one’s new book, His Ownself. In a review, Dwight Garner of the New York Times writes that Jenkins was entertaining as always.
I woke up with a smile on my face every morning during the two or three days I spent reading “His Ownself.” It’s a casual and sly sportswriter’s memoir, albeit with a few egregious missteps that I’ll get to, one of those books that reminds you that good stories happen only to people who can tell them.
Mr. Jenkins has had, in his recounting, a busy, lucky and friend-filled life. If he tends to boil everything and everyone down
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Chris Russo will be coming to your television five days a week courtesy of MLB Network.
Here is the official rundown:
This spring MLB Network will launch a brand new weekday studio program as Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo, one of the most accomplished sports radio voices in the country, hosts his first TV-based baseball talk show, High Heat with Christopher Russo. Starting on Opening Day, March 31 at 12:00 p.m. ET, Russo will bring his passionate opinions and energetic delivery to MLB Network for a one-hour live program every weekday with discussion on all 30 MLB clubs and interviews with players and club personnel.
Each show will begin with “The Brushback,” Russo’s opening monologue on the day’s biggest headlines, followed by “Coast to Coast,” a fast-paced look at the top news around the league with a roster … Continue Reading
Tuesday, I did a long story in USA Today about the significant number of announcers/analysts still going strong in their 70s, and even 80s, in TV sports at the national and local levels. It is unprecedented.
The list includes Vin Scully, Dick Vitale, Marv Albert, Verne Lundquist, Lee Corso, among others.
I talked to several of the prominent names, except one: Brent Musburger, still going strong at 74.
A little background: My connection with Musburger goes deep into my sports roots. Prior to becoming a big national star at CBS, he was the local sports anchor for WBBM-Ch. 2 during the 70s in Chicago. In the days before ESPN and the Internet, I grew up getting my sports news from Musburger. He was tremendous back then, and it didn’t take long before CBS Sports gave him the keys to the … Continue Reading
According to Variety, Susan Fornoff’s book, Lady in the Locker Room, is going to be made into a movie.
I knew Fornoff way back when she was covering the Oakland A’s for the Sacramento Bee. Unfortunately, she found herself in the news when Dave Kingman, one of the all-time idiots, sent her a rat for reasons only he can explain.
I’m sure that episode will find the way into the film. Hopefully, the filmmakers will find a good actor who knows how to play a boorish oaf.
Also, they will make a good movie in keeping with last year’s Let Them Wear Towels documentary about women sportswriters on ESPN.
Tatiana Siegel reports in Variety:
CBS Films and Last Vegas helmer Jon Turteltaub are reteaming for a period film about one of the first female sports reporters to break the
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It is award season for APSE. Judging for this year’s contest is taking place at the National Sports Journalism Center at Indiana in Indianapolis.
The finalists for APSE’s biggest honor, the Red Smith Award, have been announced. They include some big writing names and some editors who have contributed to APSE, including my former boss at the Chicago Tribune, Dan McGrath.
It is interesting to note Wendell Smith is on this list. Given the history he made in pushing for the first African-American player in the baseball; covering Jackie Robinson’s historical first year; and becoming the first African-American to join the Baseball Writer’s Association of America, it seems like a special award should be named in his honor.
In fact, I’m sure Red Smith wouldn’t mind if the APSE renamed it the Red Smith-Wendell Smith Award. Just a thought.… Continue Reading
My latest column for the National Sports Journalism Center at Indiana University is on a career transition for Bonnie Bernstein. After more than two decades as an on-air personality, she is relishing her new behind-the-scenes role in shaping Campus Insiders.
From the column:
The calendar is turned, and Bonnie Bernstein is gearing up for a busy March. That’s nothing new for the long-time sideline reporter for CBS and ESPN.
Yet this won’t be the usual routine for Bernstein. She is taking a different view these days of “March Madness” and college sports.
Bernstein is an integral part of Campus Insiders. It is a new high-tech, high volume college sports site. Campus Insiders is a big money initiative of IMG and Silver Chalice, a business division of the Chicago White Sox. It has contributing reporters on virtually every campus; … Continue Reading
Ultimately, Fox decided it would take two men, Harold Reynolds and Tom Verducci, to replace Tim McCarver with its A baseball team.
Why the threesome with Joe Buck navigating extra traffic? The principles explained yesterday in a teleconference.
From Richard Deitsch at SI.com:
Fox Sports management said it has known that Buck, Reynolds and Verducci would be its lead MLB team for a couple of months after the three had a practice broadcast together in St. Louis late last year. Rehearsal games often do not go well in sports broadcasting, but management said it was particularly impressed by the chemistry between the three men. Said Shanks: “The thing you look for in television is, do the guys like each other? Do they respect each other? Do they work hard to make the guy next to them look good? That’s what
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