Sunday media: Deb Antonelli isn’t the story on the NCAA hoops tournament, and that’s part of the story

Debbie Antonelli, left, fist bumps a cameraman before the start of the women’s basketball game between Duke and Notre Dame at the ACC tournament championship on March 5. (AP Photo/Mic Smith)

The story that doesn’t need to be a story leading into the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament involves the hiring of the first female game analyst in more than two decades.
Deb Antonelli, whose resume speaks more than for itself, including the last six years of doing ACC men’s games for ESPN, is “well spoken, says things that are well thought out, has a good depth of knowledge on the men’s and women’s games, does great analytic work and it’s really a case that this is a good fit,” said Howard Bryant, CBS Sports executive producer and senior VP of production.
Her broadcast team will be very familiar — Carter Blackburn and Mike Gminski, her current ACC partners – and also feels very caught up on teams from the Big Ten, Big 12 and SEC because of studio work every Tuesday on ESPNU.
If timing is everything, Antonelli, who has also been with CBS for this event as a sideline reporter and been working for years on women’s games for CBS Sports Net, should have been on the network’s radar long ago. She’s thankful the call has come now, because it’s not something she’s been lobbying for.
More at this link ...
Also: A similar take by the New York Times

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It’s Out of the Question: To Ball or not to Ball? That’s our reaction to the LaVar Variety Show

Lace yourself up in Lonzo Ball’s multi-colored sneakers for a bright shining moment.
Your puffed-up pops seemed to be everywhere and beyond, rhapsodizing about your incredible upside to every bemused media outlet, but like a Kars4Kids ad, walking that very fine line between having his words speak louder than your actions.
You deal with it how?
More motivated or mortified?
Extra energy or excessive embarrassment?
Admit to acting humbled or humiliated?
Who’s the adult in the room?
More at this link. ….

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Weekly sports media notes version 03.08.17: Set the clocks ahead, then cut off a half-hour, for CBS’ NCAA bracket reveal

Charles Barkley, left, struggles with the touch-screen technology during last year’s NCAA Tournament bracket announcement show on CBS.

In addition to the news posted online about the 10-game Dodgers schedule on KTLA-Channel 5 becoming official, and how CBS plans to tweak Sunday’s NCAA men’s tournament bracket show from two hours to a 90-minute format to avoid last year’s problems, here are more things worth getting circulated:

== Less than two months after Brent Musburger retired from his ESPN broadcasting career to help his family start a Las Vegas-based sports gambling media company, ESPN has managed to bring him back as a betting expert as part of what it calls a 24-hour Tournament Challenge Marathon spanning Monday afternoon to Tuesday evening.
Is that really the look ESPN wants to bring to this event coverage?
The progression of shows related to college basketball tournament bracket picking starts with with the NCAA women’s tournament selection show at 4 p.m. (Maria Taylor, ANdy Landers, Kara Lawson, Rebecca Lobo) and it runs until 7 p.m. Tuesday with a variety of shows that rotate from Bristol, Conn., L.A. Live and Las Vegas. Rece Davis hosts, it with Jay Bilas, Seth Greenberg and Jay Williams appearing as often as possible.
“For that two-day span leading up to the First Four, all people want to talk about is who did you take in your bracket, and we will give great insight on how to fill it out,” said Davis in a press release. “It will be a great challenge to keep Jay, Seth and Jay, who are cranky enough when well-rested, on point when they are sleep deprived. But it’s for a good cause – helping people win their group in the Tournament Challenge.”
Jalen Rose and David Jacoby will take the midnight-to-3 a.m. slot from the LA Live studios on Tuesday to keep the chain of shows continuous.
The Vegas element will include a set on the rooftop of the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and include Musburger, who, according to ESPN’s press release, “will offer his Vegas betting insight.” Dick Vitale and Kenny Mayne will also be in Vegas.
Even the 10 a.m. episode of “Outside the Lines” with Bob Ley on Tuesday will be tournament focused with Bilas, Greenberg and Williams incorporated.

== For what it’s worth: ESPN’s Sunday episode of “SC Featured” has Scoop Jackson taking a “full-access look” at Lonzo Ball and family — yes, including his father, LaVar and mother Tina — that airs in the 7 a.m. SportsCenter and repeats throughout the day. Continue reading “Weekly sports media notes version 03.08.17: Set the clocks ahead, then cut off a half-hour, for CBS’ NCAA bracket reveal” »

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Sunday media: Run, Rich. Really. Run …

These are the kinds of things that actually happen this time of year:

As a TV event, the NFL Combine may combine boredom with vicarious exercise, both amounting to nothing productive from achieving a personal best.
But the one element that may not get so tedious: Measuring yourself against NFL Network anchor host Rich Eisen in his own 40-yard sprint.
Just when you think this thing has run its course …
In 2012, Gregg Rosenthal of ProFootballTalk wrote: “We’ve read a few suggestions in the Twitterverse that NFL Network’s Rich Eisen’s annual forty-yard dash has grown overhyped. Like the Combine itself. My response: People will complain about anything. Relax.
“The glory of a man trying to beat six seconds while sprinting in a suit replete with a pocket square cannot be denied. There is no game film with which to evaluate Eisen. It’s all about the 40.
“Eisen’s annual trot marks the entire beginning and end of the athletic season, like a Super Bowl title being decided on the season’s opening kickoff.”
Eisen will try to top a person best of 5.94 set last year, in Year 12 of doing this, when he gets on the field in suit and tie again Sunday.
The NFL Network will air it Monday.
As has been the case in recent years, there is also a charity component to this for the St. Jude Children’s Hospital.
Read more at the official #RunRichRun site here. And at this press release about the run.
And here is the Sunday Media column about the run and how it has come to this point.

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The art of Hollywood movie sports trading cards with Cuyler Smith

A display of the very cool Hollywood sports-related illustrations by Irvine-based graphic artist Cuyler Smith remains at the Gallery 1988 showroom (7021 Melrose Ave in L.A.) through Saturday. The pieces are available for purchase — and if you do a little research, they would make an outstanding unique gift for anyone on any occasion.
Smith’s work caught the eye this week of the Kansas City Star’s Pete Grathoff in a piece he posted Monday, which highlights some of Smith’s creative takes on how stars in sports-based movies might look if they were portrayed on trading cards.
Smith explained to Grathoff that the first card he created was on the Tom Hanks’ Jimmy Duggan character from “A League Of Their Own” for a Hanks-themed gallery show, and the portrait seemed to lend itself nicely as a baseball card. The response was great, so he kept doing it.
“Each card in the series is special to me, so it’s really hard to choose a favorite,” Smith told us Tuesday. “I have had ‘The Sandlot’ set planned for awhile if that helps. I am a huge movie fan especially sports films. ‘The Mighty Ducks’ movies even inspired me to play ice hockey when I was younger.
“The series has been a blast to work on. There are a few collectors that have every card I have ever made including my first which only had an edition of 20. I collected baseball cards as a child and it is amazing to see the series take off and gain a following.”
Smith said several of the new cards are very close to selling out at the Gallery as well. There some complete sets of the show still available as well as packs that include a special card or a previously sold out artist proof from last year’s show.
He said he has plans to continue the series but it’s “nothing that I can announce just yet. I would also like to thank the entire crew at Gallery1988 for all of their help and support with my work.”
Smith got his Bachelor of Fine Arts in animation from Laguna College of Art and Design and his masters in illustration from Cal State Fullerton.
For more info, find Smith on Twitter or Instagram as well as his website, where the artwork continues to be for sale.
Just our luck this Roy Hobbs card is already sold out.

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