While the sports world was on pause, one popular debate amongst sports media and sports talk radio was whether or not asterisks should be put on championships that are played in bubbles or have seasons shortened due to COVID-19. In college football, only three of the five power conferences are in action as of right now, but it seems it has a chance to change.
On College Gameday on Saturday, Pat McAfee made his first appearance of the 2020 season. In addition to the humor McAfee brings to the show as he had a TV showing an image of books behind him and wearing shorts with a suit jacket, Kirk Herbstreit asked the former NFL punter whether or not an asterisk should be placed on this season.
McAfee believes that everything will have an asterisk on it in 2020 and that is not necessarily a bad thing.
“An asterisk is hey, look at the bottom of this page because we are going to further detail what has happened here. If at the asterisk, you look at the bottom of the page and it says, listen, in 2020 there was a worldwide pandemic, the sport stopped completely, teams had no idea whether or not they were going to play just months before the season started.
“Although there will be an asterisk like everything else in 2020, I think that asterisk will actually lead to people having a lot more respect and appreciation for the players, coaches, athletic trainers, equipment staff, everyone involved buying in and getting a season off the ground to begin with.”
McAfee also offered a players’ perspective on the question. He imagined a scenario where players were given championship rings with asterisks on them.
“If I got a national championship ring and it had an asterisk on it, a big ass asterisk on it, I would wear that thing anywhere and I would not give a single damn about it.”
For the sake of this argument, it was interesting to see McAfee take a different approach with the asterisk. Most of the time, you see it as a negative association that the title would not have the same meaning as any other year. However, McAfee completely dismissed the need for a symbol like an asterisk to mean anything.
Cris Collinsworth Wonders If Tom Brady Knows Broadcasting Is a Hard Job
“It’s a seven day a week job. For somebody that has reached where he’s reached in the NFL and made that kind of money, I’m honestly really surprised.”
Many in the sports media industry were surprised by the news that Tom Brady will join FOX Sports as the lead NFL analyst when he eventually decides to end his playing career. That includes the current lead analyst of NBC’s Sunday Night Football telecasts, Cris Collinsworth.
“I’m a little surprised,” he said on the latest episode of The Cris Collinsworth Podcast. “There’s no amount of money they could throw at him that would have influenced him. He’s going to still be working weekends for half the year no matter what it is.”
Collinsworth mentioned that he hears from most people and they ask him what the TV life is like when they are thinking about getting into the industry. Tom Brady was not one of those people. He hopes the GOAT knows what he is in for.
“It’s hard. I’m working on the airplane when I’m flying home from the other game. I’m working on the next game. It’s a seven day a week job. For somebody that has reached where he’s reached in the NFL and made that kind of money, I’m honestly really surprised. I guess the money now has gotten to the point where it’s of interest to everybody.”
While some might be unsure about how Brady will do in the FOX NFL booth with Kevin Burkhardt, count Collinsworth in as one of those people who think Brady will do a great job.
“I think he’ll be fantastic. Every conversation I have ever had with him about the game of football, you always go oh, I didn’t know. He’s always been pretty open and honest with us. He has a real personal side to the game…He’s got it all, but I’ve got to say I am surprised.”
Sunday Night Baseball Viewership Up On ESPN
“Telecasts are averaging 1.73 million viewers.”
The first month of the 2022 MLB regular season has concluded and ESPN is celebrating an uptick in viewership for Sunday Night Baseball.
The network announced on Tuesday that viewership for Sunday Night Baseball is up 4% compared to this time last year. In addition to that, compared to the 2020 full season average, ratings are up 40%.
Telecasts are averaging 1.73 million viewers. The Dodgers/Cubs game on May 8 averaged 1.781 million and peaked at over 2.1 million viewers during the 8-8:15 p.m. window.
Karl Ravech, Eduardo Perez and David Cone comprise the Sunday Night Baseball broadcast booth, with Buster Olney contributing reports.
Nickelodeon Gets Christmas Day NFL Game
“This will be the network’s first regular season game.”
The NFL’s Christmas triple header will include a little slime this year. The afternoon game between the Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams and Denver Broncos will be simulcast on CBS and Nickelodeon.
Nickelodeon has ramped up its NFL presence each year since 2020. The network has aired a kid-friendly broadcast of a Wild Card Round playoff game each of the last two seasons. Last year’s tile between the 49ers and Cowboys drew an audience of 41 million.
Before the start of last season, the studio show NFL Slimetime debuted. This will be the network’s first regular season game.
Kickoff is set for 4:30 pm Eastern on Christmas Day. No details of what Nickelodeon’s coverage may include are available yet. Nate Burleson, Noah Eagle and Nickelodeon star Gabrielle Nevaeh Green have been on the call of the network’s previous NFL broadcasts.