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Football

Bill Belichick's Entire 2009 Season Miked Up For NFL Films Series

Bill Belichick is a complicated man, perceived as the ultimate winner by some, and by others as the type who’d sell their own mother to win. He’s been the mastermind behind three Super Bowl titles with the Patriots, and before that was the defensive coordinator for two Giants title runs. He was also the villain in SpyGate, and the man who unabashedly wears hoodies for all occasions. David Halberstam‘s wonderful book, The Education of a Coach, peeled back some of the layers on the multifaceted Belichick, and a new NFL Films series promises to do the same. The two-part series, which airs Thursday Sept. 15, at 9 p.m. ET and Thursday, Sept. 22 at 10 p.m. ET, is the product of a yearlong project set in 2009, when Belichick agreed to let NFL Films put a microphone on him around the clock. We get a full portrait of the coach as he fishes off Nantucket in the preseason, goes through training camp, returns to Giant Stadium before it gets demolished, and handles coaching decisions including the infamous LateGate, when Randy Moss and others showed up late to practice during a storm storm.

“Bill Belichick doesn’t only make history – he studies it; he understands his place in it; and he appreciates our desire to capture it,” said NFL Films President Steve Sabol. “Like Vince Lombardi‘s Packers in 1967, Belichick and the Patriots gave us access to his football life and what we created is a portrait of the coach, the father, the taskmaster – and most importantly – the man.”

Here’s the trailer on NFL.com.

For those who say Belichick is a bloodless automaton, he does get choked up when discussing the destruction of Giants Stadium. So never let it be said he doesn’t have feelings towards public buildings.

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Bomani Jones' Farewell From The Morning Jones

Tuesday morning marks the final day of The Morning Jones on The Score Sirius 158.

Hosted by Bomani Jones, the sports radio host and Around the Horn regular shared his thoughts on the end of a successful 18-month run:

“On a personal level, it’s hard for me to be terribly sad. That’s largely because I know, when things are right, I’ll be able to work with everyone again. And, if things go as I hope they will eventually, we’ll be able to do the same thing we’ve been doing, just better.

The guys at Serious Sports, whom I’ve worked on videos with for the last two years, are still in Raleigh and still ready to work together. Shannon Penn and I can’t get together every Saturday morning, but we figured out how to get together to make those mockumentaries work. I’ll still hit Petey Green up for beats. Corey will one day be a big famous boxing commentator, and I’ll hope to still be relevant enough to, at the very least, book him as a guest. And Mike will still run the streets of Chicago.

Sacha, of course, will always be the kaaaaang. There’s always room for royalty. Read more

NFL Network Moving Eisen Off 'Total Access'

Fans of Rich Eisen‘s podcast will be happy to learn the NFL Network is moving the popular personality off the Total Access weeknight show to focus more on his podcast, which is also now televised. Eisen only hosted Total Access once a week last year, so it’s not a huge shake-up, though the show will now be co-hosted by a rotation of analysts including Michael Irvin and Brian Billick.

Eisen will continue his game-day duties as host of the pregame and postgame shows for the network’s Thursday night games, and continue with his Sunday pregame duties and Sunday highlights.

Ric Flair Threatens Lawsuit Against Grantland.com

Shane Ryan of Grantland.com wrote a depressing piece on legendary wrestler Ric Flair that detailed his long list of legal and financial woes.

While Flair (born Richard Fliehr) can’t argue a majority of the story because it’s based on court documents, his camp took exception to one line that Ryan wrote:

That’s what he’s called on the paychecks from Total Nonstop Action, a second-tier outfit where he’s still compelled to perform despite suffering from alcoholic cardiomyopathy, and where almost everything he earns goes toward old debts: lawyers, ex-wives, the IRS, former business partners, and anyone who made the mistake of lending him money. Read more

Cubes: An Inside Look at JWT

In the latest episode of “Cubes,” we tour the New York headquarters of JWT, one of the largest ad agencies in the country. The office features a game room, animation studios, tent-inspired meeting areas, a bar, and much, much more.

For more videos, check out Mediabistro.tv, and be sure to follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV

All Mike Vick, All The Time In ESPN The Magazine

Michael Vick is the sole focus in the latest issue of ESPN The Magazine , which hits newsstands Friday.

In the first ever issue committed exclusively to one athlete, ESPN The Magazine‘s 360 degree look at Vick is detailed in a four-chapter series: “Welcome to the Revolution,” “The View From Within,” “Zero-Sum Game,” and “The Dog in the Room.”

Quite the turn around for Vick in two years after settling for his third choice in the Philadelphia Eagles.

 

 

Dickerson and James Create 'Pony Express Award' for Nation's Best Tandem

ESPN college football commentator Craig James has paired up with former college football teammate Eric Dickerson to create The Pony Express Award, which will be given to college football’s best tandem. The name of the award is a nod to the nickname given to SMU’s backfield in the 1980s, when James and Dickerson led the Mustangs’ vaunted rushing attack.

The award will be voted on by a panel of experts, who will look at two- and three-player tandems, honoring the combination whose work ethic, desire, on- and off-field leadership and playmaking ability best fuel their team, according to the award’s website.

“Eric and I were able to complement each other on the field in such a way that together we formed a much more potent weapon than even our individual talents would have suggested,” said James. “We have remained life-long friends, and each season we have always had fun talking about the great tandems that were making an imprint on the game that season. We decided someone should recognize these great combinations, and that really became the genesis of the Pony Express Award.”

No word on whether James and Dickerson will also be creating a Death Penalty Award, though that’d be fitting, since SMU was given the NCAA’s harshest penalty in the late 1980s after the program was proven to be wildly corrupt. The University of Miami would be a frontrunner to win such an award this year.

Only Shaquille O'Neal Would Blame President Obama For Rajon Rondo Coming Up Short Last Season

Any basketball fan can tell you Rajon Rondo is a poor shooter.

Even President Barack Obama is well aware of Rondo’s flaws.

According to Shaquille O’Neal‘s new book, Shaq Uncut (in stores Nov. 15), President Obama might have rattled the Boston Celtics point guard without even knowing it last season:

“In early March some of the guys went to the museum of Fine Arts for a fund-raiser and got to hang with President Barack Obama. Everyone was a little bit in awe. The President turns to Ray, points at Rondo, and says, “Hey, Ray, why don’t you teach this kid how to shoot?” Everyone starts laughing.

KG told me he saw the look on Rondo’s face and the kid was devastated, embarrassed. Dissed by the President, even though I’m sure Obama didn’t mean any harm. Rondo smiled and went along with all of it, but KG told me he could see it in his eyes. It bothered Rondo. It killed him. Read more

Video: Erin Andrews Fills in on Regis & Kelly

ESPN personality Erin Andrews filled in for a vacationing Kelly Ripa on today’s Regis & Kelly show. Here’s a clip of the show’s introduction, during which Regis refers to the 5-10 Andrews as “one big hunk of woman.” Some good repartee going on here, and indicative of why Andrews has become such a popular media figure.

(H/T to Sportsgrid)

Sports Authority Interested in Naming Rights for Broncos' Stadium

Sports Authority is reportedly interested in assuming the naming rights agreement that Invesco has with the Denver Broncos for the team’s home field. The sporting goods company is based in Englewood, Colorado, making them a good fit, the team said.

“We believe the public will embrace this in a huge way,” said Mac Freeman, the Denver Broncos’ senior vice president of business development.

If the deal is approves during a public meeting on Tuesday, Sports Authority will pay $150 million over the next 25 years for the right to have its name on the Broncos’ stadium. Invesco is willing to move on because the company has changed its business model in recent years: Instead of selling directly to consumers, where advertising can pay dividends, the Denver-based mutual fund’s focus is now on pitching to financial advisers, where signage has less sway.

Invesco’s 20-year, $120 million deal for naming rights was set to expire in 2020. In that deal, 50 percent of revenue goes to the Metropolitan Football Stadium District and 50 percent goes to the Broncos — a scenario that would be retained in the proposed deal with Sports Authority.

So, Sports Authority at Mile High — a slightly better name than Invesco Field at Mile High. Slightly.

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