Connect with us

BSM Writers

Tom Brady Quieted an Age-Old Sports Talk Radio Debate

Tom Brady shut us up, and he did so in glorious fashion. Brady doesn’t just have some records; he basically owns all of them.



Retirement or no retirement, Tom Brady has done something that no other team-sport superstar we cover has done before him. He’s shut up sports talk radio hosts and has completely put an end to our favorite debate: Who is the greatest quarterback of all time?

Of course, this thought comes on the heels of the clumsy reporting from ESPN about his potential retirement. Adam Schefter and Jeff Darlington co-reported the following on Saturday:

“Sources said that Brady’s decision to retire is based on several factors, including family and health. Although it’s less significant, Brady also recognizes that the Buccaneers are likely to undergo significant roster turnover.”

This report was then followed by questions of whether or not the team knew. NFL reporter Albert Breer said that he sent a text to Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians asking if Brady was indeed retiring and if Tom had informed the team. Bruce responded with a simple “No, he hasn’t.”

As if that didn’t layer in enough confusion, Brady’s own father felt the need to chime in, stating that the rumors of his retirement were “unsubstantiated” and further claiming that Brady hasn’t yet made up his mind.

So whatever the finality to that story becomes, my point remains the same. Brady shut us up, and he did so in glorious fashion. Tom Brady doesn’t just have some records; he basically owns all of them.

Brady is the league leader in wins for regular and postseason play. He has the most passing yards in NFL history (regular and postseason), most touchdowns in NFL history (regular and postseason), most Super Bowl wins in NFL history. He became the first player in NFL history to win a championship in three separate decades, the first player to win a Super Bowl as a starting QB for a team from both the AFC and NFC, and the first player to win multiple championships past the age of 40.

Tom Brady’s records and statistics are so mind-blowingly impressive, you could conceivably chop his career into thirds and all three slices would be Hall of Famers. Brady’s success is so unrivaled in the sport, it almost doesn’t seem real.

As great as Michael Jordan was, there are still those who can carry a pretty strong debate about Kareem Abdul-Jabbar or LeBron James as the greatest players who ever played the game of basketball. Tiger Woods is the greatest golfer in recent history, but Jack Nicklaus still lays claim to the most major titles in PGA history. Barry Bonds has the stats to back up being the greatest baseball player of all time, but steroids sort of smear that discussion.

Then there’s Wayne Gretzky, probably the closest in the realm of major team sports to being the undisputed G.O.A.T. of his sport. But he played hockey and that sport just doesn’t occupy space in our minds as a collective American sports fan the way football does. I don’t see NHL GOAT talk leading the A-Block on ESPN’s First Take anytime soon.

Tom Brady has done something that really shouldn’t be possible these days, given all the platforms, personalities, and division amongst people who cover sports. Think about it: In today’s day and age, is there anything that we can’t debate? Yet somehow, we have found something we can all agree on: Tom Brady is the greatest quarterback who has ever lived.

Very few are willing to debate it and for good reason. The debate would be short-lived. You would sound ridiculous making a claim for anyone else. Its nearly impossible to make a reasonable argument for any other quarterback as the greatest of all time, and that’s why you won’t hear it on sports talk shows after his retirement becomes official, whenever that might be. You may hear discussions about Brady as the GOAT of all athletes, but not a whisper about him vs. any other NFL legends.

And in that way, Brady has accomplished yet another feat in his storied 22-year career: He found a way to shut us up.

BSM Writers

Asking The Right Questions Helps Create Interesting Content

Asking questions that can get a subject to talk about their feelings is a much better way to get an interesting answer.



USA Today

When ESPN’s Mike Greenberg interviewed Paolo Banchero in the lead-up to the NBA lottery on Tuesday, he asked what I’ve concluded is the single most maddening question that can be asked of any athlete preparing for any draft.

“Why do you believe you should be No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft?” Greenberg said.

Before I point out exactly why I have such a visceral reaction to such a harmless question, I want to point out the positives because Greenberg’s question avoids some of the most common pitfalls:

1) It is an actual question. That’s not as automatic as you think given the number of poor souls who are handed a microphone and say to their subject, “Talk about (whatever issue they want a quote or a sound bite on).” This is the mark of an amateur, creating the opening for an uncooperative subject to slam the door by saying, “What do you want me to say?”

2) Greenberg’s question can not be answered with a yes or a no. Questions that start with the word “Can you …” or “Did you …” may sound like they’re tough questions for the subject, but they’re actually fairly easy if the subject wants to offer an answer. Now, most interview subjects won’t take that one-word exit, but some will in a touchy situation.

The problem with Greenberg’s question has to do with the result. Why do we ask questions of the athletes we cover? Seriously. That’s not rhetorical. What’s the goal? It’s to get interesting answers. At least that’s the hope whether it’s for a quote that will be included in a story, a sound bite to be replayed later or — like in this situation — during an interview that is airing live. The question should be engineered to elicit interesting content, and there was very little chance that the question Greenberg asked Banchero was going to produce anything close to that.

I know that because I have heard some version of this question asked hundreds of times. That’s not an exaggeration. I attended the NFL scouting combine annually for a number of years, and if a player wasn’t asked why he should be the first overall pick, he’d get asked why he should be a first-round pick or why he should be one of the first players chosen at his position. Never — in all that time — have I ever heard what would be considered an interesting or informative answer. In my experience, players tend to talk in incredibly general terms about their own abilities and then seek to compliment their peers in an effort to avoid coming off as cocky.

Here’s how Banchero answered Greenberg’s question: “Yeah, thank you all for having me, first off., I feel like I’m the number one pick in the draft because I’m the best overall player. I feel like I check all the boxes whether it’s being a great teammate, being the star player or doing whatever the coach needs. I’ve been a winner my whole life. Won everywhere I’ve went, and when I get to the NBA, that’s going to be the same goal for me. So just combining all those things, and knowing what I have to work on to be better is a formula for me.”

There’s nothing wrong with answer just as there was nothing wrong with the question. It’s just that both are really, really forgettable. ESPN did put a clip on YouTube with the headline “Paolo Banchero: I’m the best overall player in the NBA Draft | NBA Countdown” but I think I’m the only who will remember it and that’s only because I’m flapping my arms and squawking not because there was anything bad per se, but because there was nothing really good, either.

First of all, I’m not sure why it matters if Banchero thinks he should be the number one overall pick. He’s not going to be making that decision. The team that holds the top draft pick — in this case Orlando — is. Here’s a much better question: “How important is it for you to be the number one overall pick?” This would actually give an idea of the stakes for Banchero. What does this actually mean to him? Asking him why he should go number one is asking Banchero to tell us how others should see him. Asking Banchero how important it would be go number one is asking him to tell us about his feelings, something that’s much more likely to produce an interesting answer.

The point here isn’t to question Greenberg’s overall competence because I don’t. He’s as versatile a host as there is in the game, and anyone else in the industry has something to learn from the way he teases ahead to content. What I want to point out not just how we fail to maximize opportunities to generate interesting content, but why. Interviews are a staple of the sports-media industry. We rely on these interviews as both primary content that will be consumed directly, and as the genesis for our own opinions and reaction yet for all that importance we spend very little time thinking about the kind of answer this question is likely to produce.

Continue Reading

BSM Writers

The Client Just Said YES, Now What?

We should spend as much time on what we will do after the client says YES.



One of the most significant moments in radio sales is when the client agrees to your proposal and says YES. But, when they do say YES, do you know what’s next? We better have an answer!

We spend a lot of time getting ready for clients with research, spec spots (thank you, radio sales trainer Chris Lytle-go to 22:30), proposals, and meetings. All of our focus is on getting the client to say YES. We should spend as much time on what we will do after the client says YES. For example, getting newer sales reps to sell annual advertising contracts would be ideal for building a list. They would have less pressure, more job security, and could spend more time making the advertising work for their clients. But, since most newer reps don’t know the business yet, they don’t bite off more than they can chew and sell a package of the month.

When a client says yes to the weight loss promotion, it’s pretty clear how to write the ads, what the promos will say, etc. BUT, if a newer sales rep starts selling annual contracts to a direct local client who needs a resource, how will that work? Let’s make sure we paint the picture right upfront. More experienced reps know that they need to assume the client will say YES to the weight loss promo and have a plan accordingly.

They have the next steps to building copy and promos, a credit app or credit card payment form, and any other detail the client must provide. But, when we ask a direct local client for an annual advertising contract, watch out! You have just made a partnership. Why not lay out, upfront, what that will look like. And I understand not every local client needs the same level of service.

A car dealer has the factories pushing quarterly promotions, agencies producing ads, and in-house marketing directors pulling it all together sometimes. Other clients need your help in promotions, copywriting, or idea generation. Make a plan upfront with your client about when you will meet to discuss the next quarter’s ad program. Include your station’s promotions or inventory for football and basketball season, a summer NTR event, digital testimonials with on-air talent, etc., in your annual proposal. Go out as far as you can and show what you have to offer to the client and how you can execute it. This exercise is good for you and, once mastered, guides the client on how you will take care of them after the sale. It also opens your eyes to what it takes to have a successful client partnership inside and outside the station.

Continue Reading

BSM Writers

Media Noise – Episode 74



This week, Demetri is joined by Ian Casselberry and Ryan Brown. Demetri talks about the NBA Draft getting an ABC simulcast, Ian talks about Patrick Beverley’s breakout week on TV, and Ryan reminds us that Tom Brady may be the star, but Kevin Burkhardt is the story we shouldn’t forget.

Continue Reading


Copyright © 2021 Barrett Media.