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Bill Cowher ‘Felt An Obligation’ To Speak Out On Jeff Saturday Situation

“I felt an obligation to speak on behalf of the coaching profession.”

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Many in the sports media landscape spent portions of last week discussing ESPN NFL analyst Jeff Saturday being hired as the interim head coach of the Indianapolis Colts. The NFL Today analyst Bill Cowher joined that group Sunday with an impassioned speech denouncing the move.

“I’m speaking on behalf of the coaching profession,” Cowher said. “I know for a fact Jeff Saturday was offered a position as an assistant coach with the Indianapolis Colts multiple times in the last four years. He declined, citing he had a TV job and wanted to spend more time with his family. I get it. Coaching is about commitment and it’s about sacrifice. It’s not just a job, it’s a lifestyle.”

The former Pittsburgh Steelers head coach continued by calling the situation “a disgrace” and “a travesty”.

“Jeff Saturday talked about how — in his press conference — he’s going to use this second half as an opportunity to build his resume and see whether or not he can coach in the future,” Cowher continued. “I say to that: what about the assistants on the staff right now? The guys that were there in training camp. The guys that were there early in the morning and late at night, the guys that have gone through the first six weeks in that building. Guys like Gus Bradley, Scottie Montgomery, John Fox. Don’t they deserve the opportunity?

“For an owner to hire a coach who has never been an assistant at the college level or the pro level, and overseeing — very much — a lot of candidates that are qualified for that job — as we see in Steve Wilks — an opportunity to build a resume, it’s a disgrace to the coaching profession. And regardless of this thing plays out, what happened in Indianapolis is a travesty.”

“It’s something that hits close to home, and I felt an obligation to speak on behalf of the coaching profession,” Cowher told The Athletic’s Richard Deitsch. “I felt I needed to make a statement.”

“The bottom line is, I’m the one coach that’s up here. I spent five years as a player, seven years as an assistant coach, and 15 years as a head coach. I have great respect for the coaching profession and understand all the things that go on when people lose their jobs. It’s never easy, but it’s part of a profession we get into. But there’s certain ways of doing certain things and commitments that people make that when things are not done properly, it needs to be pointed out.”

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Sports TV News

Greg Olsen Believes He and Kevin Burkhardt Can Handles Games ‘On Any Stage’

“Obviously, the bosses get paid a lot to make hard decisions. You have to obviously do what your bosses decide. We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”

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Greg Olsen

Kevin Burkhardt and Greg Olsen are on tap to call Super Bowl LVII in February, and Olsen told Front Office Sports he has the confidence to announce the game with no hesitations.

“If you’re asking me, I think Kevin and I have shown that we can handle a game on any stage – on any day. We just did it on Thanksgiving. We’ll do it again around Christmas. And obviously throughout the [NFL] Playoffs,” said Olsen. “So whatever decision they make. Obviously, the bosses get paid a lot to make hard decisions. You have to obviously do what your bosses decide. We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.

“But as of now, I anticipate Kevin and I, the two of us, with Erin and Tom down on the sidelines, the four of us, broadcasting the Super Bowl in February in Arizona. Until I’m told otherwise, that’s how we’re proceeding.”

Olsen also told FOS he has negotiated a new contract with FOX Sports, but declined to share details. He is slated to be replaced on the top broadcast crew once Tom Brady ends his playing career. Brady will then begin a 10-year, $375 million contract to serve as the network’s top NFL game analyst and brand ambassador.

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Sports TV News

St. Louis Cardinals Announcer Dan McLaughlin Charged With Third DWI

It is the third time McLaughlin has been charged with DWI. He was charged with the offense twice within 13 months in 2010 and 2011.

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Dan McLaughlin

St. Louis Cardinals television play-by-play announcer Dan McLaughlin has been charged with DWI after being arrested on Sunday in Creve Coeur, Missouri.

According to a report from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, police received at least two phone calls from concerned drivers that a white BMW was driving erratically, with one caller saying it was driving into oncoming traffic.

It is the third time McLaughlin has been charged with DWI. He was charged with the offense twice within 13 months in 2010 and 2011.

Bally Sports Midwest and the released a joint statement Monday.

“We have been made aware that Dan McLaughlin was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated on Sunday night.. We are very disappointed to hear this, and are working to gather additional information before offering further comment.”

McLaughlin, 48, has served as the voice of the Cardinals for 24 years.

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Sports TV News

NFL Flex Scheduling Forces ESPN To Change Bowl Schedule

Jordan Bondurant

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The NFL flex scheduling an upcoming Las Vegas Radiers game out of Sunday Night Football on December 18 has forced ESPN to make a slight adjustment with its college bowl season schedule. But the change was something the worldwide leader was prepared to make.

The Raiders were originally scheduled to play the New England Patriots in the primetime window a week before Christmas, but with both teams losing ground in terms of the AFC playoff picture, NBC opted to go with a different game that night instead. Now fans will be tuning in to see the rematch between the New York Giants and the Washington Commanders.

The shift out of the Sunday night window for the Raiders forced ESPN to swap kickoff times for the Las Vegas Bowl and the New Mexico Bowl the day before on December 17. Florida and Oregon State will play in Vegas at 2:30 p.m. eastern, with BYU and SMU facing off in Albuquerque at 7:30 p.m.

The switch allows workers at Allegiant Stadium in Vegas enough time to switch the venue over from college bowl game to Raiders home game.

“We are accustomed to flexibility and we anticipated having to maneuver our event schedules based on the possibility of the Raiders game being flexed,” said ESPN Events vice president Clint Overby.

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