Revisiting the Kobe car jump — it was not the episode when ‘Sport Science’ jumped the shark

Because we spent the afternoon yesterday with John Brenkus, the creator of “Sport Science” for ESPN’s programming, and we see that the episode he did a couple of years ago for Fox Sports Net trying to prove (or disprove) that Kobe Bryant could actually jump over a speeding Aston Martin, we thought it worth a revisit.

And not just to see Rony Turiaf get another laugh out of it.

After the Bryant Nike commercial went viral in April, 2008, Brenkus’ “Sport Science” team tried to replicate it. Were they successful, or did they trick the audience?

“The way we played it was we pretended that (our test athlete) made it, then we pulled back the curtain and showed everyone, this is how we did it (by hooking him up to cables for his own safety),” said Brenkus.

“In the Kobe example, there was probably no cables at all – just have him jump and make it composite of the car driving by, it’s very simple. We didn’t have to have cables here, but we wanted to take it to the next level.

“He absolutely could have done it. Kobe could have done it. Our athlete (a Hollywood stunt man) could have done it. But the timing is so improbable, literally one hundreth of a second margin of error. It’s extraordinary unlikely to do.”

So why risk someone’s life for the sake of proving something on TV?

Find the episode today if you have the package of FSN channels — it’s on at different times on different parts of the country. FSW plans to reair it Saturday at 4 p.m.

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