Oh, Duke’s sorry … step away from the friendly fire


So we’re all prone to boners. Or, mistakes, if you will.

Like the guy who found this crumbled $20 in his pocket and made a scene about it.

There’s a new episode of the “Sarah Silverman Show” on Comedy Central, where she thinks she sees Osama Bin Laden walking down the street and runs over him with her car. And she does it a second time when she finds out the first really wasn’t him. And she chases another down on her bike when she finds out the first two weren’t really him…

Wait, that’s a comedy show. Scripted. Intentional humor.

Oh, stop. You’re killing me.

Today, it was about 9:20 a.m. this morning, when Dan Davis, aka “The Duke,” did his update on ESPN Radio’s Colin Cowherd show. He closed with repeating a story he reported on earlier — that Miami Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga was trying to expediate the sale of the team so he could avoid capital-gains taxes if Barack Obama is elected president (story linked here).

Davis said that he made a mistake in pronouncing Obama’s name, “it was unintentional and I apologize.”

An ESPN spokesman later confirmed that Davis said “Osama” instead of “Obama.”

Davis isn’t the first and probably won’t be the last. But at least it was caught, dealt with and let go. Or, there will be some who won’t let it go.

Like the story about the absentee ballots in New York that were actually printed with the name “Osama” instead of “Obama” (linked here).
It led to Conan O’Brien making the joke: “Today they apologized and printed new ballots that say ‘Barack Hussein Osama.'”

As long as they’re sorry and fixed it ,we’re good.

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Fox’s spin on Game 4 1/2: You saw history, dude!


This is the latest ratings release from Fox Sports, without any editing:

Baseball history was made last night when severe weather conditions in Philadelphia forced World Series Game 5 to be suspended. It is the first time a World Series game has been suspended in-progress, forcing it to be concluded on a different day. Game 5 is scheduled to resume Wednesday night at 8:30 PM ET with the Phillies coming to bat in the bottom of the sixth with the score tied 2-2.

FOX earned an 8.2/12 household rating/share (13.2 million viewers) last night for the first five-and-a-half innings of Game 5. Comparisons to all previous World Series games are irrelevant due to the unprecedented suspension. When Game 5 is completed, Nielsen will issue a separate rating for the second portion of the game, and under Nielsen rules the two segments can not be officially combined into one rating.


– Last night’s pre-game show (4.1/7) and the completed portion of the game combined to average a 7.5/11 in prime time and a 3.7 among Adults 18-49. FOX ranked first for the night in prime among Adults 18-49, Adults 18-34 (3.1), in every significant male demo and second among households. Among both Households and Adults 18-49, last night rates as FOX’s top Monday night in 23 weeks.

– The audience for Game 5 was growing as the evening progressed. It posted a 6.5/10 at 8:30 and a 6.7/10 at 9:00, surged to 8.8/13 at 9:30, 9.6/15 at 10:00. The final quarter-hour of the broadcast earned a 10.4/16 as the decision was made to halt the game.

– The last World Series Game 5 posted a 10.3/18 (16.3 million viewers) for the decisive game of the 2006 World Series between the Cardinals and the Tigers. To this point, the 2008 World Series has averaged an 8.1/14 (13.1 million), down -24% in rating compared to last year’s 10.6/18 (17.1 million) for Boston’s four-game sweep over Colorado. The ’08 series is off 20% in rating and -17% in rating and audience, respectively compared to the five-game ’06 World Series featuring the Cardinals and Tigers (10.1/17, 15.8 million).

– Philadelphia posted a stratospheric 45.2/60 last night for what could have been – and could still be – the decisive game of the Series. That 45.2/60 tops all games of the 2001 NBA Finals with the Sixers. Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg delivered a 28.1/40, a slight improvement over its Game 4 rating (27.5/41). Florida markets Orlando (12.2), West Palm Beach (12.0) and Ft. Myers (11.4) followed and other markets posting above average viewership for the first part of Game 5 include Minneapolis (11.0), Baltimore (10.0), Milwaukee (9.9) and Phoenix (9.5).

And the Los Angeles market on KTTV Channel 11: A 7.4 rating (from 5:30 to 7:45 p.m.), tied with that baseball bastion of Buffalo for No. 29 of the 56 metered markets. With 4 1/2 games in the books, L.A. has an 8.1 rating for the series, which ranks 23rd.

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Who’s to blame, aside from Mother Nature? Oh, how about Fox?


(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Stopping by Dodger Stadium this morning on some business, we couldn’t help but imagine what it would be like to have a World Series game staged there right about now. The sun was out, it was a pleasant 70-plus degrees. No rain. No sleet. No gloom of the pending nightfall.

No Fox forcast needed by Jillian Whatshername. No Selig slush surfacing anytime soon.


Just a bunch of crew members dressing up the field and rearranging the outfield walls in preparation for a “All The Way” Mae Mordabito — aka Madonna — who’ll be hitting to all fields during her concert on Nov. 6.

In sharp contract, all the way around, to the handwringing going on in Philadelphia right now, where the commissioner is trying to twist the rules of what makes a regulation game into a mini-series, and all the sports-talk show hosts this morning calling a “worst-case scenario” and a “complete nightmare.”

Some are even blaming Fox for the whole quagmire.

It’s an easy target, one taken frequently in mediaville a time or two.

Continue reading “Who’s to blame, aside from Mother Nature? Oh, how about Fox?” »

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L.A.’s college football TV Week 10: Much ado about Texas


By the time W. finishes clearing out some brush from the Crawford ranch on Saturday, he’ll take off them Texas Highway Patrol glasses, set his 10-gallon hat down on the deer antler rack and settle in for another round of Texas football, BCS style.

Then, he’ll turn his attention to when he has to clean out his West Wing gun closet, ’cause on Tuesday, a new White House tennant will be determined. But enough of that distraction.

The University of Texas has faced a ranked team in each of the last three weeks, and won, rising to No. 1 in the polls and in the BCS standings. Another ranked foe, Texas Tech, coming in at No. 7 in the BCS and vauling past USC in all of the human polls, could be the last regular-season test for them Longhorns.

USC fans will be watching that one after the Trojans veto another rival with a Washington agenda — the 0-7 Huskies, who announced they’ve dumped their coach at the end of this season — at the Coliseum in another FSN cable special. Before that, Florida faces Georgia in a game where the winner is likely to vault past USC in the BCS standings into the No. 5 spot.
UCLA has it easy: No BCS worries, and the week off:


==3:30 p.m, FSN West: Washington at No. 5 USC (with Barry Tompkins, Petros Papadakis and Jim Watson).

Continue reading “L.A.’s college football TV Week 10: Much ado about Texas” »

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Skater chick, you’re equal now with biker dude


After all those ESPN “SportsCenter” stories year after year publicizing how the men and women championships weren’t paid the same at Wimbledon … And the importance of Title X. … And showing as many women’s basketball games as the men (OK, that’ll never happen).

Little did we know that the men and women winners at the X Games were equally inequitably compensated. Until it was revealed today to us by …


“ESPN is proud to announce that the X Games and Winter X Games will feature equal prize money for both men and women in 2009,” came the announcement out of the blue by John Skipper, network exec VP in charge of content (but not payroll).

“ESPN has been a leader in promoting and programming women’s athletics, and this recent action sports prize purse increase is the latest example. This past summer saw the X Games feature women’s motocross for the first time, and the upcoming Winter X Games will feature a host of female Olympic medalists from several different countries. Starting with Winter X Games 13 in January, 2009, men and women athletes at all X Games events will compete for equal cash awards.”

That’s the second revelation included in this announcement.

We always assumed every winner was paid in cases of Mountain Dew.

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