President Trump has no problem expressing his opinion on any matter, particularly when it is a popular opinion in a part of the country where he is popular. That is why it shouldn’t be a surprise that the 45th President of the United States was quick to endorse the #WeWantToPlay movement started by several high-profile college football players in response to rumors that Power 5 FBS conferences were meeting to discuss canceling the 2020 season amid Covid-19 fears.
The tweet earned the President an invitation to join Clay Travis on FOX Sports Radio’s Outkick the Coverage. Trump accepted and on Wednesday morning, the two spoke for more than 20 minutes.
President Trump shared his thoughts on multiple sports before eventually discussing college football. Travis asked him how confident he was that given the mystery surrounding college football, how confident is he that we will see an NFL season.
“Well, they want to open and they want to open badly, and they are working with government,” he said before segueing into his personal red meat, players kneeling during the national anthem. “I will say this. If they don’t stand for the national anthem, I hope they don’t open. But other than that I want to see them open and we are doing everything possible for getting them open.”
He says leagues need to consider what fans want more than what players demand. Fans aren’t going to watch something they are offended by.
“I think it has been horrible. Look at the basketball ratings. They are down to very very low numbers. They don’t realize that people are very very angry about it.”
When the conversation finally turned to college football, Trump had trouble putting into words why the issue was important to him. His answer for supporting #WeWantToPlay and more to do with the people around the sport he has met.
“The people in that sport, it’s like incredible people, and you know like some of the coaches like Nick Saban and Coach O. How about Coach O? He’s central casting right? You’re doing a football movie. You’ve gotta pick him as your coach, right and put him in the movie. And uh, Lou Holtz is just a fantastic guy, a friend of mine. He’s been a supporter from the beginning. They’re just great people and they want to play football and they know better than anybody else.”
“They know better than anybody else” probably isn’t accurate when it comes to discussing the realities of Covid-19, but the President didn’t really go into any particulars. He did tell Travis and his audience that he spoke with “one of the great doctors” who swore there was virtually no risk of players getting sick.
Trump repeated a statement about only the elderly being at risk that even members of his own Coronavirus Task Force have said is incorrect.
“It just attacks old people, especially old people with a bad heart, diabetes, or some physical problem or a weight problem,” he said and then joked “Isn’t it wonderful that I am such a perfect physical specimen? It’s so great.”
The President is smart enough to know he couldn’t guarantee that everything would be okay if there were a season. He also did not say exactly what he could do to ensure teams did play. He did say though that he found it hard to believe that college athletes would face dire consequences even if they did contract the coronavirus.
“These football players are very young, strong people, physically. I mean physically they are in extraordinary shape. So they’re not gonna have a problem. You’re not gonna see people, could there be? Could it happen? But I doubt it. You’re not going to see people dying.”
Tony Bruno Relives Favorite Moments With Angelo Cataldi on 94 WIP
“I loved every day. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that.”
Tony Bruno has been a staple of the sports radio business for decades. Bruno is from Philadelphia and was teamed up in the early nineties with a duo still dominating the local airwaves there today, Angelo Cataldi and Al Morganti. The three reunited Thursday morning on 94 WIP to remember the glory days of their partnership and friendship.
One of the first moments Cataldi asked Bruno if he remembered was the update he did from a tree outside of their studio and the answer was an emphatic yes.
“Absolutely, it’s one of the highlights of my life – other than interviewing four Presidents and every sports athlete in history – there’s no bigger moment than me climbing up in the tree, which was obstructing our view of William Penn and the city skyline. That’s what I do, I was a man of action. I’m not one of these guys that talks the talk, I climb the tree to do whatever is necessary.”
More frivolity followed when Cataldi harkened back to a segment of ‘Damsels in Distress’ and a time in which Bruno was sent on the street during a snowstorm to help shovel people out of their driveways. Bruno quickly recalled, “Man of the people. I should run for – I should of run for Governor of Pennsylvania or Senate or something.”
Bruno added that his favorite rant (and one that Cataldi loved too) wasn’t about the Cowboys or sports at all. “My favorite was my Infinity Broadcasting rant where I went on one day and even ripped our bosses, all the way up to the top of Infinity Broadcasting.” Cataldi cackled and praised Bruno’s rants more before being interrupted by Bruno saying, “yeah, my only regret is I never really ripped Al (Morganti) the way I should have ripped him. I let him of the hook so many times.”
An insightful moment came at the end of the call when Cataldi asked rhetorically if Bruno ever thought they (Cataldi & Morganti) would still be doing this thirty years later and then asked if Tony ever regretted leaving.
“It was a tough decision, Ang,” Bruno answered. “I was given an ultimatum. When I came to work with you guys, I loved every day. Every day we had fun. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that. It wasn’t one of those, ‘oh I got to go; I’m too big for these guys’. I even turned the ESPN job down a couple of times.
“My kids were still younger then, I didn’t want to move. I didn’t have to move. They said just come up here on weekends and that’s how ESPN Radio started. So I was doing weekends and Tom Bigby (Program Director) didn’t like that either, told me it wasn’t going to work. It was a philosophical thing. When he told me, ‘you should go because we are not going to pay you what they’re paying you,’ I said ok.
Cataldi began to sign off with Bruno with genuine thanks: “I got to tell you something Tone, we are indebted to you for the rest of our lives because we both learned so much from you and you are one of the great talents that radio has ever had.”
Dodgers Temporarily Pull Broadcasters Off Road
“If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road.”
When the Los Angeles Dodgers visit the East Coast later this week, the men that call the action on TV and radio will not be with them. The games will instead be broadcast on AM570 LA Sports and SportsNet LA from their respective studios.
“Due to a few members of the Dodgers’ broadcast team having recently tested positive for COVID-19, and out of an abundance of caution, the Dodgers have decided to not travel their broadcasters to upcoming games in Philadelphia and Washington,” the Dodgers announced in a statement. Similar to the 2020 and 2021 MLB seasons, the games will be broadcast from Los Angeles,” reads a statement on the team’s Twitter account.
No further details are available, so the severity and the number of cases remain unknown.
Last September, both members of the Dodgers’ television play-by-play crew were forced into quarantine. Joe Davis was the first to test positive, followed later that month by Orel Hershiser.
On Wednesday, manager Dave Roberts told the media that the Dodgers’ roster and coaching staff are not effected.
“There’s there’s no symptoms in the clubhouse. I think that as far as the upstairs, as an organization, we’re all just trying to be very cautious. But as far as in the clubhouse, coaches, training staff, nothing like that.”
If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road. 2022 was supposed to be a return to normal for the Dodgers and many other teams after not letting broadcasters travel in 2020 and 2021.
Pat McAfee: ‘No One Will Disrespect Jim Rome On My Show’
“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle.”
Jim Rome is a sports radio icon and Pat McAfee recognizes that.
On The Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday, McAfee was talking to co-host A.J. Hawk about how Rome trended recently on Twitter.
This happened after news of Tom Brady’s FOX Sports deal surfaced, and a list of the top paid sports media personalities was compiled. Rome came in behind Brady at number two making a reported $30 million a year, and many were surprised by that number. McAfee wasn’t.
“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle,” he said. “I have nothing but respect for Jim Rome.”
McAfee gave props to Rome, 57, saying he’s been doing sports talk probably longer than anyone. He’s one of the most widely distributed hosts in the country. Pat said he won’t tolerate anyone talking smack about the Smack-Off King.
“No disrespect will be said on this show of Jim Rome, ever,” he said. “Love that man.”