What became the topic of this week’s sports media column linked here:
In 1994, there were two NFL teams in L.A. Then there were none. But the network that moved into the neighborhood that same year — Fox Sports — has not only stayed and keep its roots planted.
We look at the 20th anniversary of the birth of Fox Sports, how it has not only stayed true to its “attitude” but kept building upon it even as some longtimers are getting a little more gray. We talk to Fox Sports boss Eric Shanks, “NFL on Fox” studio stalwart Howie Long, his partner Jimmy Johnson, and No. 1 game analyst Troy Aikman.
What else could have been in the column but will have to be happy staying right here:
== Terry Bradshaw submits himself to being a guest on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on Friday night/Saturday morning at 12:30 p.m. on Channel 7. There’s another indication about how influential Fox Sports has been the last 20 years — Kimmel has his own show? Still?
= We asked Aikman and Johnson about how ironic it remains that Fox may still have its sports beachhead in L.A. but the NFL doesn’t:
Aikman: “I was a big Rams fan growing up in Southern California. Then along came the raiders. Not having a team in L.A., from someone like me who spent so much time there, is disappointing. Everyone wants a team there. Maybe the West Coast feels like being without a team the last 19 years is fine. We’ve been talking about this for such a long time I’m surprised it hasn’t happened yet. The 49ers have their new stadium. The Raiders clearly need a new one and maybe they’ll do a deal to move in with the 49ers. Even in San Diego, they’re trying to get a new stadium. I don’t know how much longer Dean Spanos can stay. I know I’d sure like to be going out West for more NFL games, so hopefully we’ll get a team there, and it’ll be an NFC team.”
Johnson: “People in L.A. may be getting by with seeing a lot more football on TV, but there’s nothing like seeing it in person, and having your own team. There needs to be a team in Los Angeles, but the league wants to make sure whatever team it is, it will succeed.”
== Week 1 of the NFL broadcast teams for L.A.:
= Sunday at 10 a.m.: Oakland at N.Y. Jets, Channel 2, with Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson
= Sunday at 10 a.m.: New Orleans at Atlanta, Channel 11, with Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch, Pam Oliver
= Sunday at 1:30 p.m.: San Francisco at Dallas, Channel 11, with Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews
= Sunday at 5:30 p.m.: Denver at Indianapolis, Channel 4, with Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya
== Week 2 of college football broadcasts of note for L.A.:
= The locals:
= USC at Stanford: Saturday at 12:30 p.m., Channel 7, with Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit and Heather Cox (this, after ESPN’s “College GameDay” is from Eugene, Oregon, from 6-to-9 a.m.)
= UCLA vs. Memphis at the Rose Bowl: Saturday at 7 p.m., Pac-12 Network, with Ted Robinson, Glenn Parker, Jill Savage
= The rest of the country:
= Friday at 4 p.m.: Pittsburgh at Boston College, ESPN, 4 p.m., with Dave Flemming, Danny Kanell, Allison Williams
= Saturday at 3:30 p.m.: Michigan State at Oregon, Channel 11, with Gus Johnson, Charles Davis, Molly McGrath
= Saturday at 4:30 p.m.: Michigan at Notre Dame, Channel 4, with Dan Hicks, Mike Mayock, Kathryn Tappen
= Saturday at 4:30 p.m.: BYU at Texas, FS1, with Joe Davis, Joey Harrington, Kris Budden
== Thankfully, Steve Harvey’s “Bottom Ten” returns, with UCLA’s offense making it into the No. 9 spot.
== Ryan Ruocco, Rebecca Lobo and Holly Rowe are on the WNBA Finals, starting Sunday with Game 1 between Phoenix and Chicago on Channel 7 at 12:30 p.m.