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The Biggest Surprises So Far From The College Football Season

By Jay Rumph

There is much to talk about when it comes to college football. This season has been filled with plenty of excitement and drama. As the season moves closer to the College Football Playoffs, we watch as teams compete for one of those four playoff spots. Almost halfway through the season, we give you our biggest surprises thus far.

Upsets, Upsets, Upsets

Upset after upset, many of the top teams were tested early in the season. This year’s season featured many unexpected results. Some greats teams dropped out of the playoff picture after taking some early losses.

Ole Miss upset Alabama in a week 3 matchup, knocking them out of the top ten. But Alabama then quickly bounced back with a big win at Georgia in week 5. Georgia then suffered their second lost this past weekend to an unranked Tennessee team.

USC has lost two games this season- against Stanford and Washington, both were unranked opponents. These loses ended their playoff chances, and the era of coach Steve Sarkisian, who was fired early Monday afternoon.

An unranked Texas team upset Oklahoma over the weekend, stunning the Sooners at home. Oregon also lost early to an undefeated Michigan State team, which ended any hopes of a return to the National Championship game in 2015.

SEC

The SEC is college football’s powerhouse conference. This year SEC features a couple ranked football programs including #6 LSU, #8 Florida, and #9 Texas A&M, they all remain undefeated after week 6. While #10 Alabama and #13 Ole Miss are one loss teams, both of which were suffered to an SEC team. LSU is the best team in the conference and they look to continue their hot start.

Florida will look for backup QB Treon Harris to take control of their offense. Their quarterback Will Grier was suspended by the NCAA for violating the policy on banned enhancing drugs earlier today.

Auburn cannot seem to get anything going this season and are still without a starting quarterback. Kentucky will take control of second place in the SEC East with a 4-1 record, and Georgia losing this past weekend. South Carolina will lose their long time coach Steve Spurrier, after reports that the coach will retire from coaching.

Heisman

Almost halfway through the season there are many players showing their ability to impact games. Every year the Heisman trophy is given to the best player in college football.

Leonard Fournette, running back at LSU, sits at the top of the Heisman voting after racking up 1,000 rushing yards in just five games. TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin isn’t far behind in voting after his huge performance against Kansas State.

They sit at the top with the most votes followed by FSU running back Dalvin Cook, Baylor WR Corey Coleman, and Utah RB Devontae Booker. Georgia running back Nick Chubb is out indefinitely after a season ending knee injury sustained in their last game against Tennessee. The Hesiman race is up for grabs still only midway through the season.

Who’s 1?

There are many good teams this year that have a chance to make the National Championship. According to the most recent AP college football poll, Ohio State remains no. 1 after six weeks of football. They look poised on both offense and defense behind players like Ezekeil Elliot and Braxton Miller.

Urban Meyer decided to leave Cordale Jones at quarterback, and use J.T. Barrett as a fill in QB who can give the offense different looks from time to time. The two-quarterback system has not been set in stone, but the results look promising.

The Buckeyes are currently 6-0 so far and they hope to remain unbeaten throughout the remainder of the year. But they’ve struggled at times and have had uneven production on the offensive side. When the Buckeyes take on Penn State next weekend; they will look to build on their already great season with a win over the Nittany Lions. Can they remain number 1?

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Cover Photo Credit: Lauren Nelson/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Florida Gators QB Will Grier Suspended For Season After PED Use

The Florida Gators have lost their weapon at quarterback for the season after the team announced that Will Grier was suspended for failing a test for performance enhancement drug use.

According to multiple media reports, Grier received an automatic one year ban from the NCAA after failing the test for PEDs.

According to ESPN, Grier failed the test after taking an over the counter drug that was not approved by team trainers. It is not clear what he took that would have triggered a failing test result.

The news was first reported by gridironnow.com

Grier is a freshman from North Carolina who has taken the league by storm after leading the Gators to a perfect 6-0 record.

Florida will play undefeated LSU in Baton Rouge on Saturday.

The Internet reacts:

Read More: The Florida Gators Will Shock The College Football World This Year

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Photo Credit: arctic_whirlwind/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

The Florida Gators Will Shock The College Football World This Year

This piece was originally published on RiseMiamiNews.com on July 27, 2015.

By Jose Lavergne

I BELIEVE THAT WE WILL WIN!

That popular chant has come to prominence during the United States 2014 World Cup run. But the chant is my response to questions about how the University of Florida football will fare this season.

Simply put, the team is being treated as an underdog because everyone expects it to be a rebuilding season. I’m in complete disagreement.

If you take away special teams, there are only two main sides to a football game, the defense and the offense. Defensively, we have a squad that are in line to continue to be ranked in the top 10 in every category imaginable. That gets rid of half of the concern.

Then we move to the offensive side, where you bring in two offensive coordinators who worked under Nick Saban and are in complete agreement on what style offense they are ready to bring to Gainesville. Sadly, in the past four years we had to deal with three different offensive coordinators who brought their own approaches.

Coach McElwain would be the first to tell you that there is a lot of talent but they are meant for different offensive plays, a land of misfit toys. Now we have the ability to have consistency in the offensive side , which brings me back to being confused on why some Gator fans are already throwing away our hopes for a successful season.

Yes there are obvious concerns over the inexperience on the Offensive Line but If I told you that you would have a 6’6, 350 man playing left tackle, who was the second highest rated player in his position when he came out of high school, and then potentially on the right side you would be playing the highest ranked offensive linemen of 2015 class on your right side, would you consider that a bad thing?

That is actually a reality at Florida with David Sharpe and Martez Ivey. Add a fifth year senior in Trip Thurman playing center, a two time All-American in the FCS by the name of Mason Halter, redshirt sophomore Antonio Riles at guard, as a starting line up, that sounds like a pretty great O-Line to me.

Then you have four quality running backs in Kelvin Taylor, Adam Lane, Jordan Scarlett, and Jordan Cronkite being a part of the rotation, that is depth at this particular position that the team hasn’t seen in the last couple of years.

You add to the passing game two special wide receivers in Demarcus Robinson and Brandon Powell, with tight ends that actually have played tight end (the last couple of years the Gators were transforming defensive ends into tight end), I see a very special team  that would just need a quarterback that only needs to be concerned with managing rather than winning the game. It’s actually very similar to the Alabama style of quarterback play.

Let’s be optimistic about this team.

Maybe it’s just me wanting to enjoy my last fall football season as an undergraduate at the University of Florida, but I  can see that there is something different about this team. They are following a coach that has a simple and straightforward message and has faced adversity through an arduous road to have the opportunity to coach a nationally recognized program.

I’m excited for this season and expect a resounding shock throughout the country when the Florida Gators go back to its old tradition of success. It couldn’t have arrived any sooner.

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Why Josh Donaldson Should Totally Be The AL MVP

The Major League Baseball regular season is about a week away from wrapping up. With just a few regular season games left before the playoffs start, certain players look to end the season in strong fashion as they make their final statements in order to be recognized as the most deserving players for the season awards.

These awards include the Most Valuable Player Award for each league, Cy Young Award which is given to one pitcher of each league, and the Rookie Of The Year Award for each league.

Here’s our best guess as to who will win the top awards:

American League Most Valuable Player (MVP): Josh Donaldson

In his first season with the Toronto Blue Jays, since being traded by the Oakland A’s, Josh Donaldson has been arguably the best player in the American League since the beginning of the season. Donaldson and the Blue Jays are in first place in the American League East, and he has been the leader of the MLB’s top offense. He has a batting average of .299 and has slugged 41 home runs, which is good for third in the American League. The third baseman also leads the American League with 122 runs batted in. Donaldson made the All Star team this season and has been the one player who has consistently been the most valuable for his team. The two time All Star should be a lock to win the AL MVP Award and he has already won it in the hearts of many fans.

Photo Credit: Keith Allison/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Photo Credit: Keith Allison/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

National League Most Valuable Player (MVP): Bryce Harper

The Washington Nationals star Bryce Harper is only 22 years old and has had one of the best seasons ever by a player of his age. Harper, who was an All Star this season, leads the National League in the chase for the batting title, which is given to the player with the league’s highest batting average. The young star has a batting average of .336. He is tied for first in the National League in home runs with 41 and has 96 RBI’s which is fifth in the league. Although his team has fallen to second place in the National League East, Harper is the main reason the Nats stayed in the hunt for the playoffs late into the season. Although his team will not make the playoffs, it is very likely that Harper will win the NL MVP Award.

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/Flick (CC By 2.0)

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/Flick (CC By 2.0)

American League Cy Young Award: David Price

The 2012 Cy Young Award winner David Price has a good chance of winning the award for the second time in his career. Price, who began the season as the ace for the Detroit Tigers, has since become the ace for the first place Toronto Blue Jays after being acquired in a trade. The hard throwing lefty has a record of 18 wins and only 5 losses. The 18 wins put him second in the American League. Price leads the AL starting pitchers with an earned run average (era) of 2.45. He is also fourth in the league in strikeouts with 225. Since being acquired by the Blue Jays at the trade deadline Price has 9 wins and only 1 loss with an era. of 2.30. He has been everything that the Blue Jays hoped he would be when they traded for him.

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

National League Cy Young Award: Zack Greinke

In 2009 Zack Greinke was the Cy Young Award winner in the American League for the Kansas City Royals. In 2015 the Los Angeles Dodger’s star should win the Cy Young Award, but this time in the National League. Greinke has had an overall better season this year than he had in 2009. He has 18 wins and only 3 losses. His 18 wins this season is good for second place in the National League. The All Star righty leads all starting pitchers in the MLB with a 1.65 era. Greinke has pitched over 200 innings this season for the Dodgers and has struck out 185 batters. He has been the most consistent Dodger’s starting pitcher all year and has helped the team maintain a first place lead in the National League West throughout the season. This season for Greinke has been a pretty historic one for a starting pitcher, which is why he should be the NL Cy Young Award winner when the season comes to an end.

American League Rookie Of The Year: Carlos Correa

As a 20-year-old this season, Carlos Correa was promoted to the MLB by the Houston Astros. The rookie shortstop has since turned 21 years of age and has been a huge factor in the success of the Astros this season. He is one of the keys of why the Astros could in fact make the playoffs this season in the American League. Correa is batting .282 with 21 home runs and 61 rbi in just 93 games played this season. His 21 home runs lead all rookies in the American League. His 61 rbi is good enough for second place among all rookies in the American League. He plays the most important position on the field, and the impact that he’s made on his team’s success should be the reason why he wins the American League Rookie Of The Year Award.

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

National League Rookie Of The Year: Kris Bryant

Kris Bryant of the Chicago Cubs has been one of the more popular players talked about throughout the 2015 season. As a rookie this season, Bryant was selected as a reserve to his first All Star Game. The rookie sensation has been a big reason for the Chicago Cubs resurgence in 2015. He is hitting .282 with 26 home runs and 99 rbi. His 26 home runs put him first among all Major League rookies. His 99 rbi leads all Major League rookies as well. He’s helped the Chicago Cubs make it back to the playoffs after years of disappointment. The overall good season that the All Star has had should be good enough for him to win the NL Rookie Of The Year Award.

The 2015 MLB season has been a very exciting one. A lot of players have made a positive impact for their teams this season, but only a few guys have made a big enough impact to be considered for these awards.

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Cover Photo Credit: Keith Allison/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Why We Should Embrace Sports Gambling

By Sean Moran

Now that football is back, we can expect to see several things this fall: the enormous amount of tailgating before the games, grown men using Twitter to bash analysts who criticize their team and now, the embracement of gambling and fantasy sports.

It’s hard to watch a football game on TV without seeing commercials for daily fantasy sports sites, or DFS’s, such as FanDuel and Draftkings. These sites offer competitors the chance to win millions of dollars by playing weekly fantasy sports. The premise is simple: place a small deposit online (sometimes as little as $3), join a contest and use a generated salary cap to select players who you think will perform well. Your players score points based on their individual performances in stats such as reception/rushing/passing yards and number of touchdowns scored. The player with the highest team score then collects his winnings.

On September 14, New Jersey Congressman Frank Pallone Jr. (D), the ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, asked that the legal status of fantasy sports for the professional leagues be re-evaluated. “These sites are enormously popular, arguably central to the fans’ experience, and professional leagues are seeing the enormous benefits as a result,” Pallone said in a statement.

Pallone said he would like to see an amendment to the 2006 Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act that currently has a “fantasy carve out” that allows wagers to be placed as long as fantasy teams do not reflect actual team rosters. Essentially this means that fantasy players are choosing and betting on specific players rather than teams. In addition to closing this loophole, Pallone Jr. would also like for all sports gambling to be legalized and regulated.

It doesn’t appear that Pallone is alone either. Back in April while talking on the Boomer and Carton radio show, NBA commissioner Adam Silver expressed support for legalizing sports gambling, saying “it’s good for business.” Silver believes that legalizing sports betting would allow the leagues to monitor “irregular activity…like insider trading on the stock market.”

Even if pro sports betting were legalized, where would that leave college athletics? For the first time, ESPN had its College GameDay crew pick football games against the spread during opening weekend. This was accompanied by special “cover alerts” that notified viewers of spread beating scores. ESPN has since dropped these features, but their use has raised questions about the relationship between the sports giant and DraftKings.

College athletes are still considered amateurs and would be unable to reap any of the benefits from legalized sports betting. Recognizing this, the PAC-12 Network has reportedly refused to further air commercials for DFS giants Fanduel and DraftKings (per SportingNews). The NCAA has also chimed in on the debate, saying that student-athletes who participate in daily fantasy sports will automatically receive a one-year ban from competition. Whether this policy is fair or not is another debate.

Right now, the sports world faces a serious dilemma. What was once seen as one of the greatest threats to sports, gambling is now embraced. In the past, gambling was dismissed as a moral issue. As societal norms have changed, gambling is now an exciting way to enhance the social culture of sports.

People are beginning to notice how much revenue legalized sports gambling could generate for local communities and governments. Unlike Deflategate, daily fantasy sports and sports betting are serious issues that ought to be dealt with sooner rather than later.

Cover Photo Credit: Moazzam Brohi/Flickr (CC by 2.0)

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Four Good Reasons To Keep Watching The Miami Marlins This Year

By Eric Quinones

The 2015 season for the Miami Marlins has been a long one to say the least. It’s been a season filled with disappointment as the team has the 5th worst record in the Major Leagues.

Injuries have been a big factor as to why the team has struggled so much this season, but with the final month of the season upon us here are a few reasons to keep watching the Marlins through their final game.

Reason #1: Dee Gordon
Although the Marlins may be out of the playoff picture and don’t have much to play for but their pride, Dee Gordon is in a battle to try and win the National League batting title.

Gordon came into play today hitting .328, which puts him second in the league behind the Washington National’s slugger Bryce Harper who is hitting .336. Although Gordon has some ground to make up and needs Harper to fall off a bit, it will be fun to watch each one of Gordon’s at-bats through the end of the season.

Reason #2: The return of Giancarlo Stanton
The return of Giancarlo Stanton, one of the best players in the Major Leagues, is right around the corner and something that Fish fans should be excited about. Stanton has been on the disabled list for the last two months with a broken bone in his left hand. Stanton is due back in mid-September with an eye on finishing the season in strong fashion.

Stanton, the most prolific power hitter in all of baseball, was leading the MLB in homeruns with 27 at the time that he broke the bone in his left hand. He’s one of the most exciting players to watch play, especially when he’s up to bat. Earlier this season, Stanton hit a homerun literally out of Dodger Stadium. That’s an example of why he is considered the most powerful hitter in the Major Leagues.

Reason #3: The return of Jose Fernandez
Jose Fernandez will have a few more starts for the Fish. Fernandez, who came back this season from Tommy John surgery was 4 – 0 with a 2.30 ERA., before being put back on the disabled list with a right biceps strain. Fernandez looks to join the starting rotation once again on September 19th against the Washington Nationals .

Every time Fernandez pitches, especially at the home ballpark, he seems to lift his team to a high level of play. His teammates feed off of his energy, and he always puts fans in the stands. If everything goes as planned, Fernandez should be the Marlins ace going into the 2016 season.

Reason #4: Getting a closer look at Nicolino and Conley
As the Marlins look to close out their 2015 season on a high note, starting pitchers Justin Nicolino and Adam Conley look to show the Marlins why each of them should be considered for the Marlins’ starting rotation for the 2016 season. Both left-handed pitchers were two of the team’s top pitching prospects coming up from the minor leagues this season. Nicolino has been the more consistent of the two. He is 3 – 2 with a 3.07 era. Conley on the other hand has struggled a bit more in his stint with the Fish. He is 3 – 1, but his ERA is 5.02. With that being said, both have shown promise and have also shown that if they can consistently command their pitches they will have a good shot at being considered for the team’s rotation next season.

The 2015 season hasn’t always been fun to watch. The team has struggled throughout the year, but that doesn’t mean that fans should give up on watching this team until the very end. Although they won’t be making the playoffs, there are still players to watch that could impact the team next season.

Photo Credit: Arturo Pardavila III/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

New Professional Club, Miami FC Announces Plan to Enhance South Florida Soccer

By Abel Iraola

While Miamians continue to be kept in the dark about David Beckham’s upcoming Major League Soccer club, a local team in the second-tier is hitting the ground running.

The Miami Football Club Miami FC was announced in May, already making strides to begin playing next April. The ownership group, led by legendary Italian defender Paolo Maldini and sports media rights mogul Riccardo Silva, have made major moves to ensure success for the new club.

Last week, Miami FC announced the hiring of Alessandro Nesta as the club’s first head coach. Nesta, a renowned Italian defender like Maldini, made his name as a key player for Serie A giants Lazio and Milan before heading to Montreal for MLS. They also hired Cesar Velasco to manage the team. Velasco comes with extensive experience in sports management, serving as director of communications, marketing and community relations for Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, Toronto FC and most recently, FC Dallas.

On Wednesday afternoon, Velasco held a Q&A on the club’s Facebook page to address supporters directly for the first time.

 

Although no major announcements came from the event, the general manager hinted that the new organization is aiming to make an impact in the often sports-averse Miami scene. The club hopes to avoid some of the pitfalls of running a second-tier club in a country not yet used to following teams below the major leagues.

Issues that have troubled other teams, including broadcast rights, stadium deals and player quality and development, were addressed during the hour-long question session.

Velasco said that that the club is currently in talks with broadcasters. The “goal is to have all Miami FC matches available for our fans,” Velasco said. It is still unknown where the club will play, but they are in negotiations and expect to make an announcement in four to six weeks. FIU Stadium has been rumored to be the preferred site, and it was confirmed on Wednesday that it is among the locations currently under consideration.

Looking ahead to on-the-pitch decisions, Velasco deferred to Nesta when questioned about the expected style of play, paraphrasing the coach’s recent response to a similar question, which indicated that he prefers an attacking style, however: “As an ex defender he will make sure he will have a strong defense,” Velasco said.

The club is looking at players both at home and abroad, and plans to make its first announcements within the next few weeks. They will also hold tryouts for local footballers in November.

Maldini, Silva and Velasco are intent on not only creating a successful club, but promoting the sport of soccer in South Florida.

Velasco said that a player development system is “a key objective.” However, he did not indicate whether that means they would follow an academy model.

Asked about Beckham’s MLS side, Velasco reiterated Miami FC’s support for Maldini’s former teammate.

“We support the project of the Beckham United Group to bring a team to Miami,” Velasco said. “This is great for soccer and all fans in South Florida.”

The front office remain confident that the club will succeed, drawing fans in Miami and across South Florida by building a championship-winning team. They plan to go full-strength into the NASL season as well as the U.S. Open Cup, the country’s domestic cup competition that spans all levels of American soccer.

“We believe in Miami and we believe in Miami soccer fans. We are building a club for Miami fans to call their own and be an active part of, hence ‘one club one voice’. We are working hard to build a championship caliber team for our city.”

The NASL’s spring season begins in April 2016.

Cover Photo Credit: miamifc.com

Fear The Cowbell: Mississippi State Fan Proclaims That “Davis Wade Stadium Is The New Death Valley” In Rant Video

Paul Finebaum, the popular radio talk show host attracts some pretty interesting fans- and that’s being nice.

But in monitoring the Finebaum base, sometimes you come across some real gems. This is one of those moments.

Youtube user Stingray 26 is one bad man who loves his MSU Bulldogs.

Let’s just say I wouldn’t want to be stuck in a Starkville alleyway with this guy at night. It’s the mustache man.

Yeah, probably not. #SEC

H/T to Derek Ponamsky

In 2010 Interview With High School Student, Dan Le Batard Predicted What It Would Take To Go National. It Actually Happened.

This story was originally published in 2015. 

Dan Le Batard has swiftly become one of the best known figures in sports media- and that’s a surprise for the unabashedly provincial man who claims to have never loved a place as much as Miami, Florida.

Today Le Batard’s ESPN radio show moves to one of it’s prime time slots – 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The slot was previously held by Colin Cowherd.

The time shift is just the latest peak in the fast growth of Le Batard’s empire. He also hosts a daily television show on ESPN with Bomani Jones and Gonzalo “Papi” Le Batard (his father) called Highly Questionable.

His radio program is also simulcast on Fusion, the Miami-based cable television network geared towards millennials.

Only a few years ago, things were pretty different for Le Batard. Back in February of 2010, I was a junior in high school and a writer for my school’s paper.

While brainstorming in the office of the Lions’ Print- really just a computer lab on the second floor of Chaminade-Madonna College Prep in Hollywood, Florida, I pitched the idea of interviewing Le Batard.

He was one of the best known alums of the school despite being a bit of a mystery to the folks in the development office (They didn’t understand why he wasn’t more involved in the school’s culture.)

Le Batard and his artist brother David (better known as LEBO) were well remembered by some faculty at the school, but few students, outside of the hardcore sports fans had ever heard of Dan.

2010 Question: Would you ever want to have your own TV show?

Le Batard: maybe….eventually….if they let me do it the way we do radio, which is sloppy and would be anti-tv

I was a huge fan of Le Batard and his local radio program, and had been since it came on the air in 2004.

Le Batard and his cohost Jon “Stugotz” Weiner were unique, and even the 12 year-old-sports fan in me could appreciate that.

Over the next six years, I spent hundreds of hours listening to the show, and it helped push me to be a broadcaster and a journalist.

Many other young people in South Florida had a similar experience.

Miami sports talk had been stale and old and musty and angry for decades.

Then, seemingly out of the blue, one Miami homer and another recovering New York sports cliché machine entered the scene and changed the game forever.

Fast forward back to 2010.

After months of searching, I was finally able to find an email that reached him (I’m not sure how much of this had to do with my inexperience in my fledgling journalistic career.)

We started a short email correspondence – he was short but pleasant and willing to answer a few questions.

What follows is that original email chain, unedited.

I find it interesting anyway, because it highlights how quickly things can change in life.

Q) Where were you born and raised, and did your early years have an affect on why you became a journalist/radio host? 

Le Batard: Born in Jersey City, NJ…Came here at four….Growing up here made me want to become, from a very early age, South Florida’s sports voice….I had no national aspirations….I just wanted to talk about sports in our market

Q) You went to Chaminade High School, so why did you go there, and what were you involved in as a student? (Clubs, etc..)

Le Batard: Key Club….Speech Club…..High school newspaper….So long ago….Hard to remember….Was more involved in my church youth group…..

Q) You also went to the University of Miami and wrote for the “Miami Hurricane” during the time when Miami was really the swaggering, non apologetic, badasses that we all love. Why do you think that period and those teams where so important for the city? What is your fondest memory of this time?

Le Batard: They didn’t lose a home game the entire time I was in school….I just loved being that close to something so edgy….You could feel at the time that those teams were doing something different….I was very lucky to have UM get relevant and controversial in football when I started there….

Q)After UM, where did you work? 

Le Batard: Worked at The Herald and interned at the LA Times

Q) What is the worst story that you had to cover as a “grunt” at the Herald? 

Le Batard: Starting out, before The Herald, I had to cover city-council meetings about sewage for The River Cities Gazette, a community weekly….

Q) How did you get into radio? 

Le Batard: was a guest on espn radio every sunday….then they gave me the show….so i was doing national radio from my house, with my dog barking on sunday mornings, on an isdn line….funny….more than 200 radio stations….then they called locally from 790, and it made sense and sounded fun as a career transition

Q) How did the “Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz” come about?

Le Batard: Stugotz called and asked if I wanted to do shows with Boog Sciambi….Boog couldn’t do it right away….So I did it with Stugotz….It was truly terrible….But we figured it out….Now it is slightly less terrible

Q) Why do you hate standard sports talk radio, with clichés and all?

Le Batard: Just boring to me….Outgrew it….And very little truth in most of what I hear….Too much is just uninformed, dataless gibberish

Q) Who is the most fascinating person that you have met or interviewed? 

Le Batard: Such a hard question….The most consistently introspective and interesting is Pat Riley….That’s in sports, and doesn’t include Muhammad Ali, who had lost most of his ability to speak by the time I met him…..You asking me for most consistently interesting person or most interesting journey/story?…..Because I gravitate toward the ones close to my heart (Cuban) and the different guys (Ricky Williams, John Amaechi, Terrell Owens, Barry Bonds, Trace Armstrong)

Q) Your show is very funny. Is this by design or is it a by product of the fact that you just hate the norms of how radio has been done? 

Le Batard: There is very little design with our show….Nothing worse than trying to be funny and failing so we don’t try to be funny….I like to laugh, and I think a million things that happen in sports are laughable….But all I’m trying to do is entertain myself…..

Q) How did you become a personality on ESPN?

Le Batard: ESPN realized early that sportswriters make cheap programming….That we are informed, because we learned as reporters, not just as gasbags (we became gasbags later in life, with the help of TV)….We had to ask questions and be curious and inform ourselves, and we had opinions that were informed when asked difficult questions on the spot….So when that movement started, in the 1990s, I was one of the guys who was known in writing circles as having opinions, and ESPN wanted me also to write for their magazine, which was starting, so we merged the two….they gave me tv, and i gave them writing

Q) Really, the only show on ESPN that seems to be similar to you in your beliefs and outlook is “Pardon the Interruption.” Is this a coincidence? 

Le Batard: Not at all….They started it….I followed….they taught me to mock myself….and i loved what they had behind the scenes there, a bunch of friends helping each other and laughing….when i got back from washington, i said i wanted something like that for myself in miami….so we created the radio show, working with and for my friends

Q) Would you ever want to have your own TV show?

Le Batard: maybe….eventually….if they let me do it the way we do radio, which is sloppy and would be anti-tv

Q) Why do you stay in the Miami/South Florida Market? You would never do a national show?

Le Batard: family here….this is only place that matters to me….that’s why i haven’t done in national tv on my own yet….every offer wants me in la or nyc and i’m not leaving here

Q) Why do you think people pretend to be outraged by the whole steroids scandal?

Le Batard: i don’t think they are anymore….i think they are numb….the media keeps it an issue, too late, but i’ve never seen more of a disconnect between a story the media thinks is important and fans really don’t….

Q) Would you be surprised if anyone in baseball today was doing steroids? Take Derek Jeter or Cal Ripen Jr. for example.

Le Batard: never mind baseball….i wouldn’t be surprised by anyone in sports doing it…..it helps heal….and they all need healing

Q) Who is your favorite journalist or radio host?

Le Batard: i like so many…..gary smith of sports illustrated…..scott price……michael lewis…..scott raab of esquire….charles pierce….too many to name

Q) If you weren’t in media, what would you be doing?

Le Batard: I’d be a psychologist or therapist

Q) Who or whom do you attribute your success to? 

Le Batard: Parents….Dad gave me work ethic and Mom gave me everything else

Q) Is Bristol Connecticut really that bad?

Le Batard: yes

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Watch: Senator Tried To Use Connection To FPL Lobbyist To Get Power On For Her Family Post Irma 

BREAKING: Tom Brady Wins Deflategate Appeal, Will Play Start Of Season

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10:38 AM- According to court documents released today, NFL spent $3 million on investigation of Brady and the New England Patriots. Only to have the star quarterback face no loss of play.

10:33 AM- Click here to read U.S. District Court Judge Richard Berman decision on Deflategate.

10:27 AM- Tom Brady will not miss the first four games of the NFL season according to multiple media reports after a district court judge overturned his league imposed suspension.

This is a developing story and we will update this post frequently.

 

 

Cover Photo Credit: Keith Allison/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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