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Andy Staples Joining On3 for Daily Video Show

“His authenticity, likeability, and passion for college sports makes him the perfect candidate to lead and anchor a flagship daily show for On3.”

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Andy Staples
(Photo: Hayes Fawcett)

Longtime college football writer and podcast host Andy Staples has announced he’s joining digital outlet On3.

Staples announced his departure from The Athletic in late May and shared that he would On3 over the weekend.

“College football is the best, most fun, craziest, sometimes dumbest sport on Earth. And On3 covers it better than anybody. Think about this: There’s a college football team out there that runs a live bison across the field before every home game, and oh by the way, that team is now coached by Deion Sanders. That’s college football in a nutshell. It is a crazy sport. We’re gonna have so much to talk about.”

Staples was host of the popular The Andy Staples Show podcast while at The Athletic. He shared the he’ll be producing video content on YouTube for On3, which will also be available in podcast form and in clips on social media.

“Andy is one of the most respected and well-liked professionals in college sports media,” said On3 Founder and CEO Shannon Terry. “His authenticity, likeability, and passion for college sports makes him the perfect candidate to lead and anchor a flagship daily show for On3.”

On3 was founded in 2021 and is the latest venture by Terry, who previously founded 247Sports and Rivals.

Staples spent four years at The Athletic after working at Sports Illustrated and The Tampa Tribune, among other stops.

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Foul Territory Adds Two New Shows to Its Network

“We’re extremely excited to join Foul Territory’s fast-growing network.”

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Foul Territory Logo
Courtesy: Make Plays Media

Make Plays Media has announced that it is adding two new shows within its expanding Foul Territory Network, providing fans with more localized coverage pertaining to their favorite Major League Baseball teams. In addition to Dodgers Territory, which launched earlier in the regular season, the platform will introduce North Side Territory and Hammer Territory. The Foul Territory program debuted last March and features its signature program hosted by Scott Braun with a roster of former players who convey their perspectives of the game. These personalities include A.J. Pierzynski, Erik Kratz, Todd Frazier and Adam Jones among others. Moreover, MLB insider Ken Rosenthal frequently contributes to the show, which also contains guest appearances from active major-league players.

The North Side Territory program will focus on the Chicago Cubs and will be hosted by Patrick Mooney and Sahadev Sharma, both of whom cover the team for The Athletic. The debut episode of the program has been released, beginning its cycle of releasing shows three times per week during the season.

“We’re extremely excited to join Foul Territory’s fast-growing network,” Mooney said in a statement. “We’ve enjoyed appearing on the main show and thought this platform would be great for a Chicago-centric, Cubs podcast. We appreciate the way that the Foul Territory crew covers the game with authenticity and authority, giving fans the type of information and perspective they want. With their help, we plan to do the same thing with North Side Territory, and amplify our work at The Athletic.”

“I’m so excited to serve passionate Cubs fans and get back to podcasting with my partner on the Cubs beat at The Athletic,” Sharma said in a statement. “To do so with Foul Territory, an exciting venture that has quickly established itself as an authority in this medium, is truly a great opportunity. We’re hoping North Side Territory becomes fans’ go-to podcast for all things Cubs.”

Earlier in the month, Foul Territory released the Hammer Territory podcast centered on the latest news and analysis surrounding the Atlanta Braves. The program debuted at No. 3 on the Spotify U.S. charts for all sports podcasts and first on the Chartable U.S. rankings on Apple’s podcasting platform. Members of the show include former SB Nation Battery Power professionals Brad Rowland, Scott Coleman, Stephen Tolbert and Shawn Coleman. New episodes are released four times per week across all podcasting distribution platforms.

“We are so excited and thankful to connect with the folks from Foul Territory and be part of the network,” Rowland said in a statement. “It’s an amazing opportunity to connect with Braves fans from all over the country and the globe, and the support has been tremendous. We look forward to a fruitful partnership for a long time.”

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Report: MLB Commissioner, Some Owners Discussing Potential of Nationalizing TV Rights

“As the local media situation evolves, we will continue to evaluate the best model for us moving forward.”

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Major League Baseball
Courtesy: Major League Baseball

With uncertainty looming surrounding the future of Major League Baseball on regional sports networks, there is reportedly discussion taking place about nationalizing the television rights for the league. MLB Commissioner Robert D. Manfred Jr. and some owners around the league are discussing the possibility of nationalizing the league’s television rights, according to a new report from Evan Drellich of The Athletic. The conversation is reportedly borne out of concerns towards cord cutting, the situation surrounding RSNs and the augmenting presence of live sports in an environment with more reliance on streaming.

Some of the owners and executives within baseball, largely in the smaller markets, believe that the best way to bolster media revenues over time is by centralizing deal-making. This could result in selling all of the regular-season broadcasts for the 30 teams across the league within a singular streaming package. Conversely, those who attain larger profits are believed to be against the plan and do not want to forsake such power.

“As the local media situation evolves, we will continue to evaluate the best model for us moving forward,” Manfred said in a statement to The Athletic. “Our course of action will be determined by the clubs, who are the ultimate decision makers under our constitution.”

Major League Baseball currently has national media deals with The Walt Disney Company, FOX Corporation and Warner Bros. Discovery; however, the teams themselves have typically controlled a large portion of the inventory. The league office controls the out-of-market rights for the teams, which gives fans the ability to watch games from around the league using MLB.tv. Major League Baseball, along with the NBA and NHL, argued in court last week about the viability of Diamond Sports Group as it is entrenched in Ch. 11 bankruptcy and at a carriage impasse with Comcast.

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Dan Le Batard: ESPN Game 7 Coverage of Knicks-Pacers ‘Was Disrespectful’

“It was very celebrating all things New York the same way that the big networks celebrate the Cowboys and the things that get ratings.”

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Dan Le Batard
Courtesy: Jason Koerner, Getty Images

While the season ended for the New York Knicks on Sunday night in a series-deciding Game 7 against the Indiana Pacers, the basketball world has taken notice of what has occurred with the team over the last several years. Led by the play of superstar guard Jalen Brunson, the Knicks defied the odds and secured the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference, going on to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers in a six-game series. Although the team’s championship aspirations were not realized this year, the team is widely regarded as a success story with a bright future ahead. A problem, however, that viewers had with coverage of the game on ESPN was in its discussion about the New York Knicks, specifically the quantity of that thereof. The matter led to a debate on The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz, beginning with discourse about purported East Coast bias.

Before the contest, NBA Countdown took the air featuring analyst Stephen A. Smith broadcasting live from Madison Square Garden. The rest of the studio team was in Los Angeles, Calif. in the studio while Smith was courtside at the game with players taking warmups in the background. Smith has an affinity for the Knicks that he has divulged publicly and discusses across programming on the network, and he tried to encourage the team while appearing on the show. Spike Lee also took the air and showcased his enthusiasm ahead of the pivotal contest with Smith. Although Le Batard does not have a vested rooting interest in either team, he can understand how basketball fans feel after watching the coverage.

“It was very celebrating all things New York the same way that the big networks celebrate the Cowboys and the things that get ratings,” Le Batard said. “But to me if I’m a Pacers fan, the part that pisses me off is the last four minutes of that game – a historic game for the Pacers – only [Mike] Breen every once in a while would bring it back to the Pacers. It was the Knicks that they were talking about the whole time, and if I were a Pacers fan, I’d be mad at how slanted that coverage was.”

Jon “Stugotz” Weiner, who is from the New York area, expressed that the Knicks represented the story to discuss on the air yesterday and believes that ESPN did the right thing. At the same time, he thinks that Pacers fans have ultimately received the last laugh in advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals. Moreover, he does not think people genuinely care about ESPN covering the Pacers in the game and articulated that the storyline changed once the game began.

“Stugotz, when you say, ‘Who cares?,’ sports fans care about perceived disrespect, and this was disrespectful,” Le Batard replied. “I’m not a fan of either of the teams I’m watching. I see one winning, the other losing, and the one that’s being talked about is the losers as if they’re the winners when they sh** the bed at home, although there were valid reasons.”

One example that was presented on the show was NBA Countdown analyst Bob Myers being asked about the Pacers and bringing his answer to talk about Knicks forward OG Anunoby. Le Batard is cognizant of how Pacers fans may feel when it is the third different roster that has made the Eastern Conference Finals for the team. The Knicks have not made the NBA Conference Finals since the 1999-00 season, a 24-year run that ranks as the third-longest drought in the NBA.

“One thing that definitely rates for the NBA is the New York Knicks, and ESPN now is a propaganda machine for the broadcast they own the rights to,” producer Mike Ryan said. “What is getting people in – they see the metrics. I guarantee you they’re going to talk Dallas Cowboys today on First Take because they have the metrics to support they need to be talking Dallas Cowboys every day.”

Ahead of the Eastern Conference Finals, Weiner asserted that the storyline is going to be about the Boston Celtics regardless of the result. The Celtics finished the NBA regular season with the best record in the league and play in the eighth-largest designated market area in the United States, according to Nielsen Media Research.

“Nobody cares what those people think about the coverage,” Weiner said, referring to fans living in Indiana. “They are moving on to the Eastern Conference Finals. That’s it – that’s enough for them. ESPN did the right thing. They covered the right team, the right city because that was the story headed into the game.”

The Pacers ended the game shooting 67.1% from the field, which is the highest field goal percentage in any playoff game in the history of the NBA. Le Batard did not comprehend the Knicks to have played poorly; rather, the team was the subject of a historic performance from a young, dynamic Pacers team. Yet he felt that triumph was being ignored because of the conversation surrounding the injuries of the Knicks, including star guard Jalen Brunson fracturing his left hand during the game.

At the same time though, The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz had New York-centric segments and rebranded itself as WFAT several times over the last few weeks. Le Batard wanted to make sure that the audience knew that engaging in that tactic was to make sure that the program could reach the day where the Knicks were officially eliminated.

“I knew I was going to get there somehow; I was going to get this day,” Le Batard said. “There was no chance all the other teams could be as injured as the Knicks, and the Knicks were not going to have a day where I was going to eat it at the end. That’s not what was going to happen. The whole of that was strategic. We turned into WFAT – we got bloated.”

“Fire Tom Thibodeau – trade OG [Anunoby], get rid of him, don’t re-sign him. Isaiah [Hartenstein] as well,” Weiner added. “Just light up the phone lines today boys and enjoy your 20 share.”

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