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Mike Greenberg Says Chris Berman Helped Keep Him At ESPN

Greeny called Berman “one of the most important sports announcers in the industry’s history because of what ESPN was when he started and what ESPN became and the enormous role he played in that.”

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On the latest episode of his I’m Interested podcast, Mike Greenberg was joined by one of the legends in the sports broadcasting industry, Chris Berman. For Greeny, this was a special interview for him to do considering how important Berman was to him in his career. 

Greeny called Berman “one of the most important sports announcers in the industry’s history because of what ESPN was when he started and what ESPN became and the enormous role he played in that.” He would go on to tell a personal story about how Berman helped him when he started at ESPN.

“When I first came to ESPN (end of August 1996). When I moved to Bristol from Chicago where I had been working, I left behind my girlfriend then, Stacey, and it was difficult to do. As a consequence of that, I worked weekends at ESPN for about the first year. I wanted to fly to Chicago as often as I could to see my girlfriend.

“For a period of time, I questioned whether or not I was doing the right thing. One day that I will never forget, I had just landed in Providence and raced towards the studios at ESPN. I’m in the men’s room and I am shaving in the sink in the bathroom with no shirt. The door opens and here comes Chris Berman.” 

Later on in the bathroom, Berman goes to him and says “how are you doing, Greeny.” After Greenberg explains his situation to him, Berman said “Well, welcome home.” It was at that moment, Greenberg mentioned, that ESPN felt like his home and where he should be.

Berman gave some great stories during this podcast, including the one on the first time that he gave his signature play-on-words after players’ names during a broadcast, which he has become famous for until this day: 

“In those early days, there might be 5 games that were on TV. Here was the rest of the games and here was the score panel. You are not as much entertaining people, but you are trying to give a little flair or color and describe the game. One night, working at 2:30 in the morning, I had done these nicknames in college out of the box score and 1 or 2 of them came out. This was not a plan…People seem to really respond.”

One interesting question Greeny asked Berman during this fun podcast of looking back at old memories of when ESPN first started and famous moments in his career was Berman’s thought on the role ESPN has had on sports in America.

“In some ways, we were a microcosm of the growth of cable in the 1980s. Therefore, we helped connect sports to fans by showing as much as was out there or if someone was traveling, we were like your home radio station. I think we, in a very good and positive way, kind of brought some folks together, including those in the games, not even necessarily the players. We helped people see what was going on. In our own way, we have our own sense of community. What I never knew when I signed up for the job was that sports would be such a melting pot. I believe certainly in this day and age, we can use a little something that is common ground.” 

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Media Reacts To Nick Saban’s Comments On Texas A&M, Jackson State

“Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.”

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Nick Saban had some choice words about recruiting in the NIL era on Wednesday night. The Alabama head coach didn’t just voice frustrations with the process. He called out three schools specifically for using Name, Image and Likeness payments to create an advantage for themselves in recruiting.

He said that Texas A&M, which signed the top-ranked recruiting class in 2022 according to a number of outlets “bought every player on their team.”

He said that Jackson State gave a player $1 million to come to the school. “It was in the paper,” he said. “They bragged about it! Nobody did anything about it.”

It is likely that he was talking about defensive back Travis Hunter, widely regarded as one of the five best players in the class of 2022. It should be noted that Jackson State Coach Deion Sanders has been adamant that Hunter did not receive a dime from the school or anyone else.

The comments created plenty of content on sports radio on Thursday.

Jimbo Fischer, the head coach of Texas A&M took the story to a new level with a press conference of his own in which he cryptically encouraged people to “dig into” Saban’s career history.

The commentary in the sports media came in all kinds of forms. Plenty took to Twitter to express an opinion.

Others used the feud to create comedy.

Finally, others did actual reporting. they made phone calls to get context and further the story.

The coaches may be relatively quiet in public for a while. That doesn’t mean the stories and reactions are going away. Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.

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Bleav Announces Partnership With SiriusXM

“The Bleav podcasts come with some serious star power. Each show features a former player paired with a host to discuss the latest news about their team. In adding Bleav, SiriusXM adds the likes of Eric Davis, Lorenzo Neal, Adam “Pac Man” Jones and others to its roster.”

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A new partnership will see content from the Bleav Podcast Network come under the SiriusXM umbrella. All 32 of the network’s NFL team-specific podcasts will now be available on the SXM app. The satellite radio company will also have the ability to air Bleav content on its sports channels.

“SiriusXM is a leader in content. We’re very happy to be a part of their programming and continue to amplify the voice of our talent,” Bleav CEO Bron Heussenstamm said in a press release. “SiriusXM listeners will be able to regularly hear from athletes that played for their team, bringing fans insight and access that only a player can.”

The Bleav podcasts come with some serious star power. Each show features a former player paired with a host to discuss the latest news about their team. In adding Bleav, SiriusXM adds the likes of Eric Davis, Lorenzo Neal, Adam “Pac Man” Jones and others to its roster.

The deal will also lead to more content in the future. The companies expect to add to the Bleav content available on the SXM App, including shows focused on other professional and college sports. 

“Bleav’s team-focused programming, hosted by many former stars from the league, give fans a unique and experienced perspective into their favorite players and franchises,” said Steve Cohen, SiriusXM’s SVP of Sports Programming and Podcasts.  “Bleav’s network of shows deliver valuable insight for fans of every NFL team.  They are a great addition to the selection of sports podcasts available on the SXM App and we look forward to adding other shows, focused on other sports, from the Bleav network to SiriusXM in the future.” 

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Dave Portnoy Offers Pat Beverley ‘Blank Check’ To Join Barstool

“Just say how many zeros and guarantee us once a week, you are hired.”

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Minnesota Timberwolves player Pat Beverley turned heads with his comments about Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul after the Suns were eliminated from the NBA Playoffs.

Beverley told Mike Greenberg and Stephen A. Smith on Monday that he thinks Paul is a “traffic cone,” due to his poor defense and that on nights he knows he’s playing Paul he’ll have a nice steak dinner and wine the night before. He said he’s in bed by 8 p.m. and doesn’t want to hear from his mom or girlfriend if he’s playing Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors.

Pat’s comments got the attention of Barstool Sports president Dave Portnoy. Portnoy said Monday he liked Beverley so much that he would hire him to do a podcast for Barstool.

“If Pat Beverley is a Barstool fan and he’s watching this, he has a blank check. You name your price for a podcast, and we will hire you — no questions asked,” Portnoy said. “Just say how many zeros and guarantee us once a week, you are hired.”

Portnoy made the push to sign Beverley to a podcast deal as the company seeks to scale back the number of podcasts it produces. Barstool CEO Erika Nardini announced the decision to cut shows last week.

No word if Beverley has responded to Portnoy’s offer.

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