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Peter King: Every Baseball Writer I Knew Was Divorced, So I Went to Football

“I just decided that even though my sporting preference was baseball, I decided to go into a more sane lifestyle job and they had an opening to cover the Bengals in 1984.”

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Plenty of sports radio shows and podcasts have been wrapping up the 2021-22 NFL season since Super Bowl LVI ended with the Los Angeles Rams winning.

There may be no better guest to look back at the past season and look ahead to both the offseason and next season than NBC’s Peter King. The Football Night in America columnist was a guest on Sports Talk Chicago/WCKG with host Jon Zaghloul this week.

Naturally, since the show is based in Chicago, the two discussed the Bears hiring new coach Matt Eberflus and general manager Ryan Poles. But the Rams’ Super Bowl win and the Hall of Fame chances for Aaron Donald and Matthew Stafford were also part of the conversation.

But from a sports media standpoint, Zaghloul also asked King about his long career covering the NFL and how his sportswriting career began. It may surprise some to know that King didn’t intend to cover sports when he studied journalism and preferred to cover baseball as a sportswriter.

How King eventually took the football beat, rather than baseball, made for an amusing and enlightening story. As he explained to Zaghloul, football — in this case, covering the Bengals for the Cincinnati Enquirer — came down to what he could see was a better work/life balance situation.

“When I started at the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1980, I was the back-up beat writer on the Cincinnati Reds,” King explained. “And at the time, they had four daily writers — the Dayton Daily News, the Dayton Journal-Herald, the Cincinnati Post, and the Cincinnati Enquirer.”

“So I became friends with all those guys, and every one of them was divorced,” he continued. “I was married, we were planning a family, we were thinking about it, and I just said, OK, it’s one thing to be the back-up guy on a team and you go for one 10-day road trip a year. It’s another to be gone for half of seven months every year. So I just decided that even though my sporting preference was baseball, I decided to go into a more sane lifestyle job and they had an opening to cover the Bengals in 1984.”

No one would dispute that King made the correct decision, considering where his career has gone covering the NFL. Yet it’s sobering to hear that quality of life and the ability to build a family factored in so early on for him. Work/life balance is something so many struggle with to this day, regardless of profession. Several baseball writers may hear King’s remarks and nod knowingly, even if they love covering the sport.

The entire conversation between King and Zaghloul is worth listening to. King has so much to say on both the NFL, covering the sport (including some insight into the Hall of Fame voting process), and the journalism profession overall.

You can listen to the Sports Talk Chicago podcast at the show’s website or on apps including Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Sports Online

Dave Portnoy Tells Business Insider CEO He Is ‘Piece Of S*** Coward’

“Despite objections from the moderator, Dave Portnoy got out his entire question before his mic was muted.”

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Dave Portnoy is not going to move on from his hate of Business Insider. The Barstool founder joined a Twitter Spaces session on Thursday night where the public had a chance to talk to Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget.

The event was hosted by the New York Times. Blodget was part of a panel discussing issues facing the business community.

“So yeah, I saw that piece of shit Henry Blodget’s on there,” Portnoy said when his mic went live. “My first question’s why would a piece of shit who’s been banned by the SEC from talking about stocks be on there. My second question is hey Henry, you f***ing coward, you know everything you wrote about me was bullshit. Why don’t you ever sit down with me you f***ing piece of shit coward. That’s my question.”

Despite objections from the moderator, Dave Portnoy got out his entire question before his mic was muted. No answer came. The moderator apologized to Blodget and ended the event.

The accusations of Blodget being banned by the SEC from discussing financial advice are true. Portnoy was referncing fraud charges that Blodget settled in 2003 when he was a Wall Street analyst.

Business Insider has ran a salacious piece about Portnoy’s sex life in November. It included accusations of misconduct from three women that claimed consensual sexual encounters with Portnoy took a dark turn without their consent.

Dave Portnoy has maintained the story is not true. He has also threatened to sue Blodget, Business Insider and the story’s author Julia Black.

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Mile High Sports Acquires Colorado Preps

“Mile High Sports adds Colorado Preps to a portfolio that includes a radio brand broadcasting on 98.1 FM and 107.5 FM HD-3 in Denver, a magazine, and MileHighSports.com.”

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Mile High Sports has acquired the Colorado Preps brand, including ColoradoPreps.com and the company’s radio and podcast networks. The deal is effective immediately.

“I am proud of what we’ve accomplished through 19 years of the Colorado Preps Network and very excited about the future with Mile High Sports,” said Kevin Shaffer, owner and founder of Colorado Preps. “The MHS crew is poised to bring additional and expanded coverage to high school sports across the state and we’re honored to stay involved with the network and help its growth.”

He will remain on the staff and continue hosting and producing radio and digital shows.

“With the elimination of the Rocky Mountain News, and shrinking budgets across most news outlets, local high school sports coverage has often and unfortunately become the casualty,” said Mile High Sports Editor-in-Chief Doug Ottewill. “But there will always be kids playing sports and parents wanting to read about those kids playing sports. I think ColoradoPreps.com fills a need and a niche that will never go away, no matter what’s happening on the bigger sports landscape in Colorado.”

Mile High Sports adds Colorado Preps to a portfolio that includes a radio brand broadcasting on 98.1 FM and 107.5 FM HD-3 in Denver, a magazine, and MileHighSports.com.

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Barstool Sports To Eliminate Some Podcasts

“We almost created a model where we started with all the resources, we didn’t start with the idea or the people and as a result, we have a lot of things that weren’t necessarily going in the right places.”

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Barstool Sports is doing some internal re-organizing. As a result, some shows are being cancelled.

Talking on her podcast Token CEO, Barstool Sports CEO Erika Nardini said the company has looked under the hood the past few months and are trying to clean things up.

Nardini also stated that the company’s spending needs to be reined in. She feels like too much has been invested in content that hasn’t been delivered, and creative freedom has become more of a curse than a blessing.

“We almost created a model where we started with all the resources, we didn’t start with the idea or the people and as a result, we have a lot of things that weren’t necessarily going in the right places,” she said.

In the podcast space, Barstool has 94 different offerings to choose from. Nardini said it’s just become too much, and they’re going to have to scale things back.

“No company of our size should have 94 shows,” she said. “What was my mistake and our mistake? We treated all 94 shows equal.”

Nardini realizes that means tough decisions are going to have to be made. Good, talented people will either have to move on or their jobs will be re-purposed.

“I’m bummed that it impacts people’s jobs,” she said. “I think that is a really, really serious thing when a role gets impacted and things change. You have to take that with a little bit of a heavy heart.”

Erika didn’t specify which shows, in particular, would be getting the ax, but it’s believed that the show Podfathers will be among them.

Show co-hosts Michael McCarthy aka “Large” and Justin Clemenza aka “Clem” took to Twitter and to the Barstool blog to announce the parenting podcast was no more.

Jordan Demcher aka “Jordie” tweeted a couple of thoughts on the situation but then clarified his podcast would carry on.

Keep your eyes on social media over the next few days for more details on this situation from Barstool’s personalities.

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