What constitutes this week’s media sports column: The annual Dubious Dozen of the Sports Media. Sorry. It had to be done.
We came close to putting this thing out of its misery, pulling the plug in part because we aren’t sure what constitutes “dubious” much in these multi-media “fire, aim, ready” climate. Websites like Deadspin.com have become over diligent not at just compiling media faux pas almost as they happen, but also blowing them out of proportion.
Take the latest involving Peter King and his cellphone number getting out in a tweet unintentionally. Really?
We considered other mix-and-match muffs to include in this year’s list as well. There was a recent open-mike slip by ESPN’s Neil Everett. A meltdown by a reporter who got himself canned for being a little too honest in his assessment of his employers. A San Diego sportstalk host who was fired (not Lee Hamilton), and the San Diego columnist who was let go because he didn’t agree with the agenda of the new publishers. Terry Bradshaw made some mangled reference to fried chicken, Cris Carter was singled out for doing a lame “C’Mon Man” reference to the South Carolina kicker who wears glasses, Samantha Steele isn’t hiding a relationship with Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder, a bunch of websites perpetuated a typo about where the World Series was headed, HBO had to cancel its series “Luck” because of, well, some bad luck on the race track involving the star attractions, and a kid covering the University of Kansas football team was put into an awkward position to not ask questions at Charlie Weis’ weekly press conference.
And Lane Kiffin somehow had nothing to do with it.
Not to mention the KCAL-Channel 9 new sports anchor, Kristine Leahy, reading the story last month about the passing of promiment boxing trainer Emanuel Steward, noting that he was once connected with Oscar de la Renta. She did correct herself — it was Oscar De La Hoya.
So there it sits in a post-Thanksgiving seat of honor, as a reminder that credibility and reputation are things that too often get damaged in the pursuit of being first on a story, whether it’s one transmitted via Twitter, text, email, Facebook or whatever non-traditional forms are acceptable thse days.
And sorry if any of the links above were switched by accident with a recipe on how to properly roast acorn squash. Toggling between the two websites could have caused even more dubiousness in prepping for the Thanksgiving day dinner.
Meanwhile, the other media notes that are worth paying attention to:
== For the USC-Notre Dame game Saturday at the Coliseum, ESPN “College GameDay” launches as usual with a dramatic sunrise (6 a.m. on ESPNU, then moving to ESPN at 7 a.m.) with the usual cast of Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso, Desmond Howard, David Pollack, Samantha Steele and Tom Rinaldi. You’d think Erin Andrews couldn’t help herself but to pop by as well for old time’s sake.
ESPN says that since the first test-run in 2004, “GameDay” is making its ninth visit to USC, and the fifth time for a USC-Notre Dame meeting. The dates and scores from previous L.A. ventures:
Oct. 28, 2011 – No. 6 Stanford def. USC, 56-48
Oct. 30, 2010 – No. 2 Oregon def. USC, 53-32
Sept. 13, 2008 – No. 1 USC def. No. 5 Ohio State, 35-3
Sept. 16, 2006 – No. 4 USC def. No. 19 Nebraska, 28-10
Nov. 25, 2006 – No. 3 USC def. No. 6 Notre Dame, 44-24
Dec. 3, 2005 – No. 1 USC def. No. 11 UCLA, 66-19
Oct. 9, 2004 – No. 1 USC def. No. 7 Cal, 23-17
Nov. 27, 2004 – No. 1 USC def. Notre Dame, 41-10
Herbstreit hangs out in the GameDay bus and regroups with Brent Musburger and Heather Cox for the game broadcast (5 p.m., Channel 7).
== One more “GameDay” note, thanks to the Washington State sports information department: For the 130th consecutive appearance, the WSU flag will be somewhere in the background, going back to 2004. Two flags – Ol’ Crimson and Gray – have been flown in the background of the GameDay set by dozens of friends and alumni. WSU recognized the GameDay flag wavers in a pregame ceremony prior to the Montana State game in 2010. In addition to the flags that fly, there is a traveling flag signed by the holders after each episode. The traveling flag is retired after each season, the first of which is hanging in WSU’s Alumni Center.
== Gus Johnson, Charles Davis and Julie Alexandria have the UCLA-Stanford game (Saturday, 3:30 p.m., Channel 11, Rose Bowl). In addition to the KLAC-AM (570) radio call with Chris Roberts and Matt Stevens, the game produced by Dial Global Sports with John Tautges and former Bruin head coach Terry Donahue can be heard on Sirius (Ch. 139)/ XM (Ch. 194).
The rest of the Pac-12: Mike Morgan, J.C. Pearson and Laura McKeeman have Utah at Colorado (today, noon, FX); Craig Bolerjack, Joel Klatt and Petros Padapakis have the Apple Cup — Washington at Washington State (today, 12:30 p.m., Channel 11); Carter Blackburn, Rod Gilmore and Jemele Hill have Arizona State at Arizona (today, 7 p.m., ESPN) and Ted Robinson, Glenn Parker and Ryan Nece call the 116th Civil War — Oregon at Oregon State (Saturday, noon, Pac-12 Network).