1. Chris Almighty
Host Chris Fowler is the patriarch of ESPN College GameDay (born on Nov. 13, 1993, for all intents and purposes, in the second floor foyer of the Joyce Athletic & Convocation Center at Notre Dame; Notre Dame 31, Florida State 24).
Broadcaster Brent Musburger is the most enjoyable listen in sports (at least for me) and he has more years left in the tank than, say, Kobe has with the Lakers.
But Fowler’s contract is up, the SEC Network is launching, and he wanted to deploy his leverage. Can’t blame him for that. So Fowler, 51, wins while Musburger, 75, loses.
I suppose Brent can blame this on Jesse Palmer.
As Jason McIntyre writes, and I second, Fowler is born for the job he does on Saturday mornings. But, as a presence in the booth, he is coolly professional. He’s never going to be Brent or Vin Scully or even Joe Tessitore and if you’ve spent any time around Chris –and, trust me, I have — he’s very polished and prepared but he is also very guarded (you probably didn’t even know that he is married to a former ESPN Body Shaper, do you?). He likes to look good, both physically and image-wise.
The best thing about this is that Fowler and Herbie have been partners in crime for more than 15 years. They’re close friends. The rapport will be natural.
The three worst things: 1) the fallout for Rece Davis, as Fowler not only keeps the Saturday a.m. gig but adds Saturday night. I’m one of those who’d rather see Rece get at least one of those gigs. He’s dynamite. 2) What happens if there’s heavy weather and ESPN does Game Day 1,500 miles or so from its prime-time game (or will that practice end)? 3) the interviews with Marshall Mathers will not be as colorful.
2. Do That Again?
I cannot even stand up on a board, so I’m no judge of the magnificence of surfing tricks. But this has all the elements of gnarl. The executor of said trick is John John Florence, 20, of Hawaii, though it was performed in Bali.
3. The Los Angeles Blakers
The Los Angeles Clippers have won nine in a row. Listening to ESPN Radio in LA this a.m. and the past hour has been devoted exclusively to Kobe’s presser yesterday and what the Lakers should do (lure Melo [Car, not Fab]? Fire D’Antoni? Add more Laker Girls?) for 2014-15. For me, Kobe’s annoyance at the team’s prospects begins and ends with the two-year, $48 million contract he signed earlier this year.
Sure, if Jim Buss wants to go Teddy KGB (“Pay that man his money”) on Kobe, fine. But that certainly limits the Lakers’ chances of building a team around him next season. Oh, and as long as you can only play with one basketball per possession, why would LA want Melo? Dwight Howard was actually a terrific complement; it’s just that he was miserable.
What we love about Kobe –and what makes him great –his alpha doggyness, his insatiable appetite for competition — is what will also prevent him from matching Michael Jordan’s sum of six rings. There’s a team in L.A. that could win the NBA Finals in the next three years–but it’s not the Lakers.
Oops, I just did the same thing: mentioned the Clips and then bloviated on and on about the Lakers. Sorry.
4. Virile Videos
So, we love lists, you love lists, and Esquire has released its list of “75 Movies Every Man Should See.”
Sure, I’ll watch. Will you run all of them on the Esquire Network marathon?
I’ll label this a “Ridiculist.” Why? Because how can you devise a list of films every man should see and not include these 20 films…
1. Apocalypse Now
2. The Shawshank Redemption.
4. Pulp Fiction
7. After Hours
8. Saving Private Ryan
10. Animal House
11. A Few Good Men
12. Nobody’s Fool
13. Almost Famous
14. High Noon
15. Point Break
17. Mr. Roberts
18. Groundhog Day
19. Good Will Hunting
20. The Godfather II
Hey, there are some wonderful choices on the list: “Blazing Saddles”, “The Conversation” and “Broadcast News” to name a few. Also, I realize that they often tried to cover multiple bases with one film, so only one James Bond film, only one Godfather, etc. But I’d have put, minimum, six of the above on the list. And I understand that some of the choices are obvious; there’s a reason for that.
5. Leave it to a Stanford Undergrad…
…To come up with the most plausible theory thus far on why Flight 370 went missing and remains missing. He could be a Hersman Trophy winner for Aviation, or at least an early leading candidate.
Andrew Aude is the Cardinal who proposed the theory, which has gone viral. Aude then turned down an offer of $3 billion from some V.C. sharks simply out of force of habit.