A lost art: ‘Talk about so-so…’ is not a question

Want to share an excellent column by my old pal, Malcolm Moran. The director of the National Sports Journalism Center at Indiana offers a lesson for sports journalists, young and old.

He begins:

Can we talk about an epidemic?

Less than a month ago, in the days leading to the Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game, Jameis Winston, the Florida State quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner, heard a media member say, “Talk about the preparation you’ve had out here.”

His teammate, running back Devonta Freeman, who had overcome challenging circumstances during his adolescence, listened to a reporter say, “Can you talk about your childhood? Was it just you and your mom?”

Their head coach, Jimbo Fisher, delivered lengthy opening remarks at a press conference, which were followed by this: “Coach, can you talk a little bit about the focus?”


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Podcasts with your truly: Talking Called Shot book, Super Bowl, Deadspin with Awful Announcing, Sports-Casters

Many thanks to Matt Yoder of Awful Announcing and Steve Bennett of Sports-Casters for featuring me on their podcasts this week.

Point of fact, Tommy Craggs, it was Yoder who brought up Deadspin. Here’s the rundown from my AA podcast:

-His glorious feud with Deadspin and how it all started.
-How being called every four letter word by Tommy Craggs has helped his internet profile.
-Fox’s grade for the Super Bowl broadcast and why it’s an incomplete.
-Best & Worst elements of Fox’s Super Bowl pregame coverage.
-Are we getting saturated with too much pregame?
-The firestorm surrounding Erin Andrews and all the unfair criticisms flung her way.
-No noticeable Super Bowl bump for Fox Sports 1.
-Ed’s new book on Babe Ruth’s Called Shot. Is it fact or fiction?
-Why Babe Ruth himself made the most convincing argument that … Continue Reading

Albert, Reilly named to NSSA Hall of Fame; Mike Emrick, Peter King also bag big awards

Kudos to Marv Albert and Rick Reilly. And good to see “Doc” get a well-deserved honor.

The official release from the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association:


Marv Albert and Rick Reilly have been elected to the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association Hall of Fame, executive director Dave Goren announced today. Albert, a longtime network play-by-play announcer, and Reilly, who spent the bulk of his career at Sports Illustrated before moving to ESPN, will be honored during the 55th Annual NSSA Awards Weekend, June 7-9 in Salisbury, NC.

NBC’s Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick has been elected 2013 National Sportscaster of the Year and Sports Illustrated NFL writer Peter King has won his third National Sportswriter of the Year Award in the last four years.

In addition, state sportscasters and sportswriters of the year have been elected by their peers … Continue Reading

Happy New Year: Frozen, but back in saddle and ready to go for 2014

Happy New Year to all from the Sherman Report.

After a two-week break for the holiday, I’m refreshed and ready to go for 2014. Well, sort of.

The temperature says it is 54 degrees at Sherman Report. That’s inside my office, where I have some heat issues.

Outside in Chicago, the nasty thermometer says -15. This is stupid cold. Then again, I’m the stupid one for choosing to live here.

I could be in Los Angeles, where I spent New Year’s Day at the Rose Bowl with my brother, Steve (left), and two boys, Matt and Sam. It truly was a bucket-list experience for this longtime sportswriter. Of all the events I have covered through the years, I never did the big game in Pasadena.

For a child of the Midwest, the Rose Bowl always represented the pinnacle for the … Continue Reading

Podcasting: Yours truly on Sports Media Weekly; ESPN’s BCS plans, NBC’s Olympics plans, and farewell to Keith Thibault

Many thanks to Keith Thibault and Ken Fang for having me on this week.

Here’s a link to the podcast and the rundown from Ken:

*The FCC announcing it is looking into eliminating sports blackouts and how it could or could not affect the National Football League.

*ESPN unveiling its six channel “Megacast” for the BCS National Championship Game.

*NBC telling the world of its coverage plans for the 2014 Sochi Olympics and the amount of hours both online and on television.

*ESPN’s Outside the Lines winning a prestigious award despite being buried on Sunday mornings and on weekday afternoons.

*Also the lack of promotion for the new ESPN book “League of Denial” while Colin Cowherd’s book has become a bestseller.


Also, earlier this week, Keith announced that he will shut down his Sports Media Journal blog on Jan. … Continue Reading

The year in sports media: Incomplete for Fox Sports 1; Up for Olbermann, down for Beadle

My latest column for the National Sports Journalism Center at Indiana University reviews the year in sports media. It never was dull.


Wow, that was fast. At this time a year ago, we had no idea Manti Te’o was mourning a fake girlfriend; that Keith Olbermann would be in again at ESPN and Michelle Beadle out at NBC; and that a new sports cable network would trot out an 81-year-old Regis Philbin as an example of new and innovative programming.

Yes, 2013 has been quite a year for sports media. Some ups, more than a few downs, and many in-betweens. Here’s my review.

Fox Sports 1: Easily, the biggest story of the year in sports media, and it figures to have an effect on the landscape for many years to come. As you would expect, Fox came out blazing … Continue Reading

Romenesko: For the ultimate insights and updates on media

If you’ve paid close attention to my site lately (and who hasn’t?), I have an ad in the right rail linking to JimRomenesko.com.

It’s truly an honor to have Romenesko’s presence on my site. Many of you already know what he does. The mere mention of “Romenesko” connotes a complete report on the media and then some. Quite simply, it is the place where journalists get their news.

If you look at his site, there’s an ad for Sherman Report on it. Needless to say, I’m thrilled. I’m certainly getting the better end of this deal.

Thanks, Jim.


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Jerry Reinsdorf on Jim Corno: ‘He truly changed sports on TV’

My Chicago Tribune obit on Jim Corno, one of the good guys, make that great, who had a profound impact on how you watch sports not only in Chicago, but in the entire country.

From the story.


Few sports fans knew his name and even fewer would be able to identify a picture of him. Yet White Sox and Bulls Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf noted nobody had more of an impact on the Chicago sports fan over the last 30 years more than Jim Corno.

“He truly changed sports on TV in Chicago,” Reinsdorf said.

Corno, the president of Comcast SportsNet Chicago, died Tuesday after a long battle with cancer. He was 66.

Born April 5, 1947, Corno ushered in an era that saw sports on television migrate from free over-the-networks such as WGN-Ch. 9 to major regional sports outlets … Continue Reading

Jim Corno, 1947-2013: Profound impact on regional sports TV programming in Chicago and beyond

No matter where you are, when you watch your favorite team on your regional sports network, you should think of Jim Corno.

Corno, the president of Comcast SportsNet Chicago who died Tuesday at the age of 66, was a true pioneer in local sports TV. When he joined SportsVision in Chicago in 1984, it was a struggling pay network that reached few homes. He transformed the station into a huge outlet that eventually became the template for regional sports networks throughout the country.

White Sox and Bulls chairman Jerry Reinsdorf knew how much Corno meant to him. He summed up his impact on sports TV:

“How do you best remember someone like Jim Corno?  The average fan may not immediately recognize Jim’s name, but I think perhaps no one else in this city has done more over the past four … Continue Reading