What’s new with Rick Neuheisel? Not the same old tune at CBS with the SEC


On the first episode of CBS’ new “College Football Today” studio show, Rick Neuheisel was apparently expected to grip it and rip it. With his analysis as well as with his guitar.
So he did. And very acutely acoustically with both tasks, we should add.
Ripped away from the Pac-12 Network as its featured studio analyst, the former UCLA quarterback and head coach has already set the bar high for those who expect a song-and-dance man to summarize the SEC coverage that CBS is locked into these days.
(See the clip above: He also managed to find a way to get “CBS” in as the last rhyme. His next appearance is on Saturday’s pregame before Georgia-Vanderbilt at noon on Channel 2).
“I like goofing around with the guitar, but on a much smaller scale,” Neuheisel said this morning. “Give me a verse and I’ll sound clever and half-way entertaining. These ensemble pieces are going to out me as a clear amateur in the ways of music. Hopefully we can reduce it so it still catches the listener by surprise and they don’t realize I’m really tone deaf.
“I’m just a guy who can play 30 percent of every song, but it’s really much better if you’ve had a lot to drink.”
Having decided that he’s so committed to this new CBS gig that he actually relocated to New York and is putting his Manhattan Beach place up for rent, Neuheisel explained some of the transition involved in this latest media-related career move, which includes doing a daily show called “Full Ride” from 7-to-10 a.m. PT on Sirius XM College Sports Nation Channel 84 with partner Chris Childers:

engineer_dorm_room1Q: This isn’t just a weekend gig for CBS that involves flying up to San Francisco, doing a few studio shows and then relaxing at the beach? You’ve really had to do a lifestyle change for this?

A: I feel like I’ve gone away to college again and I’m staying in my dorm room. Swear to goodness. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches all over again. I’m in constant contact with college football, whether it’s TV or talking on the radio or doing interviews. I do feel like a coach again. I look forward to having my wife finally able to join me here in the Big Apple. This really is a leap of faith, taking a swing at network TV. I loved working for the Pac-12 Network and especially with the people there.

Q: But now you have to become an expert in the SEC, because that’s CBS’ baby, and that must be something of a culture shock as well?

A: I gotta tell you, I went on my own private tour to all 14 SEC schools. Took my wife and got in the car and did the whole Grizwolds thing. I even stopped at the Mississippi River as we were going to Memphis and Knoxville and I did the whole Clark Grizwold line about the ‘Old Miss …’ It was my own ‘Vacation’ movie.
I had been to Georgia before, because we played there when I was UCLA. Tennessee, I had coached there. Texas A&M and Missouri I had seen. But never had I been to the other places, and to go to these little college towns like Auburn and Fayetteville … I get it now. I don’t mean to any abandonment of the Pac-12, but I get the media attention to this conference. They have this beacon on the hill as a stadium and the towns revolve around it. It’s really charming. It’s just a completely different take on the game than anywhere else.

Q: So all the way back in New York, were they talking about Josh Rosen’s first game at UCLA? Were some there calling it the best performance by a true freshman — ever — as many in the media were going off? Continue reading

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Weekly media notes version 09.11.15: Funny you should ask, Rob Riggle …

Rob Riggle co-stars in a “Key & Peele” piece for Comedy Central. Remember who gets a bagel, and who doesn’t, OK?

What’s likely coming up Sunday:

Did the NFL provide comedian Rob Riggle with enough material this off season so that going to work on his first “Fox NFL Sunday” show was merely just picking and choosing what to satirize now and what to save for later?
Yeah, pretty much.
This morning, we caught up with “The Daily Show” and “Saturday Night Live” veteran as he was in the make-up chair, and he made up some nifty answers to questions we had about what’s going this season.
We couldn’t get a good read on exactly what he intends to do for Sunday’s first show, but only wish he was given more than just two minutes.
Remember how in Week 2 of last season he was already in “Fantasy Owner Rehab?”

A sample of our Q-and-A with Riggle:

Q: Did you learn much from “The Daily Show” and “Saturday Night Live” that you can apply to sports comedy, taking real events and finding the not-so-subtle satire in them?
I think there are elements to that. But I don’t focus on trying to present news or educating anybody. I’ve only got two minutes each week to write a sketch and entertain people. And do this and that. I’m not really trying to present any news stories. I got from ‘SNL and The Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in doing improv and sketch comedy, because that’s really what this is. That’s me. Frank Caliendo did crazy impersonations in a monologue, and that was great. Jimmy Kimmel did things his way.

Q: Where does Tim Tebow land in the comedy spectrum of what you might tackle?

A: (Laughing). I like Tim personally. He’s a really nice guy. I got to meet him when I hosted the ESPYs and he played along with some of the bits we did, so I appreciated that. Yeah, he’s on the receiving end on this show. It comes down to, I guess, what the lead is. Right now, his not making the Eagles isn’t necessarily the lead.

What we think is worth dropping in today: Continue reading

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Your L.A.-based NFL Week 1 TV lineup: 7 games, but that includes Chargers baggage

watching-football-on-tv-625x300There are a lot of lines to read between as we assess how the L.A. market gets assigned NFL games going forward on CBS and Fox.
Aside from tonight’s NBC coverage of New England hosting Pittsburgh (5:30 p.m., Channel 4, with Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth), the other six games in the L.A.-based NFL Week 1 lineup for those without access to DirecTV’s “Sunday Ticket:”
= Of the five Fox games to pick from during the entire day, we get sucked into San Diego hosting Detroit (1 p.m., with Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis and Tony Siragusa, instead of New Orleans-Arizona at the same time, and none of the early window selections Green Bay-Chicago with Joe Buck and Troy Aikman, Seattle-St. Louis or Carolina-Jacksonville).
= The CBS doubleheader — because there’s no more conflicts from U.S. Open tennis coverage — sends us Kansas City-Houston in the 10 a.m. window (with Kevin Harlan and Rich Gannon, instead of Miami-Washington, Cleveland-N.Y. Jets and Indianapolis-Buffalo). |
In the 1:25 p.m. window, it’s the Chargers’ alternative of Baltimore-Denver (with Jim Nantz and Phil Simms, instead of Cincinnati-Oakland and Tennessee-Tampa Bay).
FYI: San Diego market now does not get to see Baltimore-Denver because it competes with SD-Detroit.
= The NBC Sunday night game: N.Y. Giants-Dallas at 5:30 p.m. (with Michaels and  Colinsworth).
= The two ESPN Monday night games: Philadelphia-Atlanta at 3:55 p.m. (with Mike Tirico and Jon Gruden) and Minnesota-San Francisco at 7:15 p.m. (with Chris Berman and Trent Dilfer).

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Play It Forward Sept. 7-13: The NFL decides its time to air it out, without Goodell in New England

Details/TV: Thursday at 5:30 p.m., Channel 4
Details/TV: Sunday at 10 a.m.
Details/TV: Sunday at 1:05 p.m.
Details/TV: Sunday at 1:25 p.m.
Details/TV: Sunday at 5:30 p.m., Channel 4:

How you know it’s NFL season?
When the covers of Rolling Stone and the Sports Illustrated league preview issue are put side by side, and you’re not sure which is which.
20150826wilsoncover-780x1060When a biography of Rob Gronkowski comes out – published by Derek Jeter.
And when seemingly everyone from Rachel Ray to “Ray Donovan” is making references to whether Tom Brady got the wrong end of a Roger Goodell suspension, and whether the appeals process vindicated him so he can now suit up for the Thursday night opener at home when the Patriots’ championship banner is raised.
This is also the time when we try to gauge which horse to pick in the race to L.A. – should we follow the Rams, Raiders or Chargers? What happened to the Jaguars, Vikings and Panthers? Do the networks start airing those team’s games to Southern California to whet the appetites?
What else to look for – A new female sideline referee. More cameras in the pylons as the TV networks look for better angles of breaking the plane of the goal. Point-after-touchdown kicks move from the 2-yard back to the 15, more games will stream online, and the Vegas odds for the Patriots to repeat may flex by the minute.

Details/TV: At Angel Stadium, Monday-Wednesday, Fox Sports West, SportsNet L.A.:

Mike Trout singles off Clayton Kershaw during a 2014 meeting. (Photo by John McCoy Daily News)"

Mike Trout singles off Clayton Kershaw during a 2014 meeting. (Photo by John McCoy Daily News)”

As long as the Dodgers are in the neighbor and won’t get in trouble from some umpire, why not detour into American League territory for these Freeway Series non-exhibitions. The Dodgers’ sweep of the visiting Angels at the start of August included wins posted by Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw, and a two-run walk-off homer in the 10th by Andre Ethier in the finale. Greinke and Kershaw draw the first two starts of this series as well. The Angels’ Mike Trout is 5-for-10 lifetime against Greinke and 2-fot-6 against Kershaw, with no homers against either. For the record, since 2005 when the Angels changed their name from “Anaheim” to “Los Angeles,” they’ve won 34 of the 59 regular-season meetings. But the Dodgers have taken eight of the last 11.
Monday’s game is 6 p.m., with Tuesday and Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Also this week:  Dodgers at Arizona, Friday-Sunday, SportsNet L.A.
Angels vs. Houston at Angel Stadium, Friday-Sunday, FSW

The 135th U.S. Open works its way to the women’s final (Saturday, noon, ESPN) that includes Serena Williams facing sister Venus Williams in the Tuesday quarterfinals, and  the men’s final (Sunday, 1 p.m., ESPN) …  Floyd Mayweather says his fight Saturday in Vegas against Andre Berto will be his last (pay-per-view, $74.99) … UCLA will also be in Vegas that night, facing UNLV (7:30 p.m., CBS SportsNet) while USC stays home against Idaho (Coliseum, 5 p.m., Pac-12 Net) … Del Mar finishes its summer season, the Galaxy resumes MLS play (Saturday, StubHub Center vs. Montreal), and the Basketball Hall of Fame decides it’s time to induct Lisa Leslie (Friday, 3:30 p.m., NBA TV) … Find more at this link.

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It’s Out of the Question: What are USC’s environment-friendly speed dating policies?

southern-caliLet’s start here: Arkansas State? And Idaho?
USC is in the process of educating its football fans on how to achieve a “zero waste” status at the Coliseum this season. Starting with Saturday’s 2015 opener, it’s all about reclaim, repurpose and recycle.
But a compost heap for visiting players may also come in play. The Trojans’ carbon footprints are going to be all over them.
You feel you’ve been bushwhacked into paying $60 for a game ticket, and USC’s Office of Sustainability is only concerned with leaving the crumbling landmark in better shape than when you arrived.
Meanwhile, USC’s athletic department is behind sustaining a schedule that is about “going green” in other ways.
Read more at this link …

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