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Charissa Thompson Tells Jalen Rose How FOX Helped Her During Photo Scandal

“On this week’s Renaissance Man podcast with Jalen Rose, Thompson said her sense of humor helps her deal with the people that still post comments on her social media and how her bosses at FOX helped her feel better during a difficult time by including her in an event that she wasn’t even working.”

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Whatever career you decide to go into, but especially in sports media, it is important to be authentic to who you are even when a bad situation happens to you. That was the case for FOX Sports analyst Charissa Thompson. Back in January 2018, private photos of Thompson were stolen off of her iCloud account and leaked to the public. 

On this week’s Renaissance Man podcast with Jalen Rose, Thompson said her sense of humor helps her deal with the people that still post comments on her social media and how her bosses at FOX helped her feel better during a difficult time by including her in an event that she wasn’t even working.

“My employer, this is where FOX is so incredible. When all that happened to me, my bosses put me on a plane to the NFC Championship Game to Philadelphia to be with all the guys because they were like hey, this bad thing happened to you, but we want you to be with your family. I flew there and I wasn’t even working and they were so wonderful to me. My employer wrapped their arms around me and they were like we got you. It’s about remaining authentic even when a crappy thing happens.” 

For Thompson, the goal for her in her career was to always do something that put her closer to her dream job. Since she was in Seattle and ESPN is on the other side of the country, she looked to get into FOX Sports in Los Angeles when she got out of college. Thompson took the unconventional route to get her foot in the door and then had to be sneaky to grow her career.

“I took the only job that was available in that building, which was Human Resources. In that job, I would sneak up to the highlights department at night and would log tapes. The path for me was do anything, do any job, don’t be above it. Be willing to go to a small market.”

Thompson and Rose used to work together at ESPN from 2011-2013. She even said that she wanted to name her first child Jalen because of how much of a fan she was of him growing up. 

In fact, Thompson thanks Rose for some advice that she gave her when she got to ESPN about always looking ahead to the future while still taking time to appreciate where you are in the present moment.

“I remember I got there and I was so excited and you said to me, appreciate your position, but plan your promotion. It has always stuck with me. Everyone is like just be happy where you are and I am, but I am always thinking about what’s next, trying to maximize the opportunity and potential in this window.”

Thompson, who also hosts the Calm Down podcast with Erin Andrews, says the podcast has come at a good time in her and Erin’s life because “It’s an opportunity to be real” and a “great forum for us to just talk.” 

Sports TV News

AEW Dynamite Moving To TBS

“Wrestling hasn’t been seen on TBS since the network cancelled WCW Thunder in March of 2001.”

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Hockey is coming to TNT. That means wrestling is moving to TBS. The network will be the new home of AEW: Dynamite starting in January.

AEW’s original TV show airs on Wednesdays. That will be the spotlight day of the TNT NHL package. The network will present hockey doubleheaders every Wednesday, leaving no room for wrestling.

TNT won’t be completely out of the AEW business. In a press release, WarnerMedia announced that Friday will still see AEW: Rampage airing on the network. The press release pointed out that Rampage has gotten off to a very hot start for TNT.

“Since its August 13 debut, AEW: Rampage has ranked as one of the top cable programs on Friday night. The second week of the show featuring the debut of CM Punk delivered the strongest ratings for the AEW franchise since the premiere of AEW: Dynamite.”

Wrestling hasn’t been seen on TBS since the network cancelled WCW Thunder in March of 2001. That changes on January 5.

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Sports TV News

Louis Riddick Explains How MNF Production Meetings Work

“Riddick expounded more on the production meetings with coaches, including one with a particular Bay Area play-caller.”

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Courtesy: ESPN Images

The Monday Night Football campaign is in full swing, and The Athletic’s Robert Mays had MNF analyst Louis Riddick on The Athletic Football Show to discuss his weekly routine for putting on a top-notch broadcast.

Riddick dove into the process each week and discussed which coach has impressed him the most during his time in the booth. Tuesdays are a rest and recovery day after traveling home — then the process starts on Wednesday.

“We kinda have a, from a booth perspective, between Steve Levy, Brian Griese, myself, and then Phil Dean the producer and Jimmy Platt, the director. Us five get together and just discuss the previous week’s game and whatever we want to bring up that is positive or negative,” Riddick described to Mays on the show.

The brain trust discusses play breakdowns, production, and situations that popped up during the game. Next up is choosing the important voices for the next game that they want to speak to.

“We give Phil the list of coaches and players that we think are important to talk to,” Riddick said. “He sends that into that team’s PR department, and then usually they say yay or no. Most teams are very, very good with giving us the players that we want because it’s better for them. They know the more we highlight them, the better it is for them.”

Riddick expounded more on the production meetings with coaches, including one with a particular Bay Area play-caller.

“I would say our meeting with [San Francisco 49ers head coach] Kyle Shanahan,” Riddick answered. “Before we did the Bills game down in Arizona because they had to move from Santa Clara because of what was happening was some of the best football conversations I’ve ever had in my life, quite honestly. From team building, coach-player relationships, X’s and O’s, the opponent, what he learned from his father, what he feels specifically that running backs need to have and why… It was fricken incredible, incredible.”

Riddick can be seen on Monday Night Football breaking down all the action throughout the 2021 NFL season. Listen to the full episode here.

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Sports TV News

Women in Sports Media Celebrate Kate Scott Joining 76ers

“The west coast native is heading east to continue pursuing her dreams, and she received a ton of support from the women throughout sports media this week.”

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Courtesy: NBC Sports Philadelphia

Kate Scott is breaking new ground, and the sports broadcasting community took notice.

Scott joined Lisa Byington as the only full-time female voices of NBA franchises when the Philadelphia 76ers announced her addition this week. She replaces longtime TV play-by-play voice Marc Zumoff.

“Being the voice of the 76ers is a dream come true,” Scott said to NBC Sports Philadelphia. “As a kid playing hoops alone in my driveway, I actually used to imagine I was Allen Iverson; the clock would wind down in my head, people would scream, ‘You’re too small! You don’t belong!’ But I’d fade away, hit the shot, and the crowd in my mind would go wild.

“To now get the opportunity to be the voice of that team is incredible, and I look forward to earning the respect and trust of the phenomenal city of Philadelphia, and 76ers fans everywhere, one call and one game at a time.”

Scott seemingly busts down barriers every year. She recently became the first woman to call Olympic men’s basketball as part of NBC Sports’ coverage of Tokyo 2020, where she covered both men’s and women’s games.

“Kate’s energy, passion, and tremendous knowledge of the game of basketball made her the ideal candidate to usher in a new era of 76ers basketball on NBC Sports Philadelphia,” Philadelphia 76ers President of Business Operations Chris Heck said. “We’re thrilled that she’ll call our city home and look forward to the lasting connections and memories she’ll make with the best fans in sports. Kate and Alaa [Abdelnaby] are a dynamic broadcast pairing that 76ers fans will enjoy watching on the call this season and beyond.”

The west coast native is heading east to continue pursuing her dreams, and she received a ton of support from women throughout sports media this week.

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