Tag Archive | "Tiger Woods"

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Rice, Suggs In Running For Madden 13 Cover

Posted on 08 March 2012 by WNST Staff


This Year’s Campaign Expands to 64 Players – With Play-In Round Featuring Two Athletes

From Each NFL Team Represented in Head-to-Head Matchups

March 7, 2012 – EA SPORTS™ and ESPN announced today the return of the award-winning Madden NFL Cover Vote campaign, where fans can cast their vote for the next athlete to grace the cover of one of the highest-selling videogame franchises in North America. Last year, nearly 13 million votes were cast through ESPNSportsNation.com and ESPN mobile in both companies’ most successful cross-platform activation. Tenth-seeded Cleveland Browns running back, Peyton Hillis, trucked through the six week competition all the way to the ultimate end zone – the Madden NFL 12 cover.

This year’s competition will incorporate more athletes and more chances to vote as the field has been expanded to 64 NFL players, putting even more control in the hands of the fans. Beginning today through March 21, fans can visit the SportsNation Facebook page to choose among the 64 candidates in a play-in round (each matchup features two players from the same NFL team) to advance to the official 32-player, seeded tournament.  The winners of the play-in round will be unveiled with the official seeded, 32-player bracket on March 21 on ESPN’s “Madden Cover Vote Special” from 5-6p.m. EST.  To ensure their favorite player advances to the next round, fans are encouraged to vote daily and tweet their picks using #MyMaddenCoverVote on Twitter.  Every Wednesday between March 21 and April 25, fans can tune into SportsNation on ESPN2at 5p.m. EST to check out the latest Madden NFL 13 Cover Vote standings.

In addition to the SportsNation Facebook page, fans will be able to vote in the play-in round via the open Web through widgets embedded on blogs, websites and more.  Each widget features an individual match-up for each of the 32 total teams in the league.  For the cover vote from March 21-April 25, all voting must be cast at ESPN.com/MaddenVote.

The star-studded list of candidates participating in the play-in round features past Super Bowl winners, perennial Pro Bowlers and some of the most popular players in the NFL including Drew Brees, Arian Foster and Rob Gronkowski. The full list of matchups featured in the play-in round are:


Ravens Terrell Suggs vs. Ray Rice Jets Mark Sanchez vs. Darrelle Revis
Steelers Troy Polamalu vs. Ben Roethlisberger Bills Stevie Johnson vs. Ryan Fitzpatrick
Browns Joe Thomas vs. Joe Haden Dolphins Reggie Bush vs. Brandon Marshall
Bengals Andy Dalton vs. AJ Green Patriots Wes Welker vs. Rob Gronkowski
Texans Arian Foster vs. Andre Johnson Chargers Phillip Rivers vs. Antonio Gates
Colts Dwight Freeney vs. Robert Mathis Broncos Tim Tebow vs. Von Miller
Jaguars Maurice Jones-Drew vs. Blaine Gabbert Chiefs Dwayne Bowe vs. Derrick Johnson
Titans Jake Locker vs. Chris Johnson Raiders Sebastian Janikowski vs. Shane Lechler


Bears Jay Cutler vs. Matt Forte Rams Chris Long vs. Brandon Lloyd
Lions Calvin Johnson vs. Matt Stafford 49ers Vernon Davis vs. Patrick Willis
Vikings Percy Harvin vs. Jared Allen Seahawks Marshawn Lynch vs. Earl Thomas
Packers Aaron Rodgers vs. Clay Matthews Cardinals Larry Fitzgerald vs. Patrick Peterson
Falcons Matt Ryan vs. Julio Jones Eagles Michael Vick vs. LeSean McCoy
Saints Drew Brees vs. Jimmy Graham Giants Victor Cruz vs. Jason Pierre-Paul
Panthers Cam Newton vs. Steve Smith Cowboys Jason Witten vs. DeMarcus Ware
Buccaneers Josh Freeman vs. LeGarrette Blount Redskins Brian Orakpo vs. Ryan Kerrigan

The Madden NFL 13 cover vote marks the third-consecutive year that EA SPORTS has asked fans to help shape the face of the Madden NFL franchise through a cover athlete voting campaign.  It also marks the second year of its collaboration with ESPN’s SportsNation.

Madden NFL 13 is developed in Orlando, Florida by EA Tiburon.  For more information about Madden NFL 13, please visit: http://www.ea.com/madden-nfl. To download assets pertaining to the Madden NFL 13 please visit http://maddennfl13.newslinevine.com.

All player participation has been facilitated by National Football League Players Incorporated, the licensing and marketing subsidiary of the NFL Players Association.

EA SPORTS™ is one of the leading sports entertainment brands in the world, with top-selling videogame franchises, award-winning interactive technology, global videogame competitions and breakthrough digital experiences. EA SPORTS delivers experiences that ignite the emotions of sport through industry-leading sports simulation videogames, including Madden NFL football, FIFA Soccer, NHL® hockey, NBA basketball, NCAA® Football, Fight Night boxing, EA SPORTS MMA and Tiger Woods PGA TOUR® golf, and EA SPORTS Active.

For more information about EA SPORTS, including news, video, blogs, forums and game apps, please visit www.easports.com to connect, share and compete.

About Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) is a global leader in digital interactive entertainment. The Company’s game franchises are offered as both packaged goods products and online services delivered through Internet-connected consoles, personal computers, mobile phones and tablets. EA has more than 100 million registered players and operates in 75 countries.

In fiscal 2011, EA posted GAAP net revenue of $3.6 billion. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, EA is recognized for critically acclaimed, high-quality blockbuster franchises such as The Sims™, Madden NFL, FIFA Soccer, Need for Speed™, Battlefield™, and Mass Effect™. More information about EA is available at http://info.ea.com.

EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS Active, The Sims and Need for Speed are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. Mass Effect is a trademark of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd.  Battlefield is a trademark of EA Digital Illusions CE AB.  John Madden, NFL, FIFA, NHL, NBA, NCAA, Tiger Woods, and PGA TOUR are trademarks of their respective owners and used with permission.  Twitter is a registered trademark of Twitter, Inc.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Officially Licensed Product of National Football League Players Incorporated.

About SportsNation

SportsNation is a live sports television show born from the Internet, fueled by fan interaction and focused on fun.  The show, which has the youngest and most male audience on the ESPN network, features discussions of the day’s hottest sports topics but also smaller stories that generate buzz on the Web but are overlooked by other shows.  Feeding off the theory that if two heads are better than one, 200,000 heads are better than two, SportsNation engages hundreds of thousands of sports fans across the country via ESPN.com’s SportsNation page (http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/).

About ESPN Games and EA

ESPN’s long-standing relationship with EA produces deep brand integrations into console gaming titles such as EA SPORTS NCAA Football 12 and Fight Night Champion.  Additionally, the relationship in 2011 produced the biggest ESPN poll vote ever for the Madden NFL 12 cover vote, logging nearly 13 million votes, the most ESPN votes ever for a joint collaboration.  The Emmy award-winning EA Virtual Playbook also most recently extended to boxing and golf in 2011.



Thanks for your interest in SportsNation’s Madden NFL 13 Cover Vote.

EA Sports and ESPN’s SportsNation have chosen two players from each NFL team to be included in a social play-in round for the Madden NFL 13 cover.

Starting March 7th on SportsNation’s Facebook page and on voting matchups called ‘sapplets’ or ‘widgets’ embedded across open web (info below), fans will be able to vote on matchups from each NFL team to send one representative into the final bracket of 32 players at ESPN.com/MaddenVote on March 21st.

If you choose to embed one of the 32 individual voting ‘sapplets’, you can use the next page that includes all 32 embed codes for all 32 NFL teams. They post to your site much like a YouTube clip and can increase time spent on your site as well as traffic by generating debate about matchups.

The social Play-in vote launches on Wednesday, March 7th and closes two week later on Wednesday, March 21st. The Facebook tab and voting ‘sapplets’ will be live during those two weeks.



  • Go to page 2. Find your team.
  • Copy the embed code.
  • Paste the embed code onto your website where you would embed a YouTube clip.
  • The voting platform is ready and interactive on your page!
  • Please Note: do NOT embed on Tumblr and do NOT change the height & width


NEW embed Code

49ers Vote

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Chiefs Vote

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Broncos Vote

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Chargers Vote

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Raiders Vote

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Cardinals Vote

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Rams Vote

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Seahawks Vote

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Dolphins Vote

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Jets Vote

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Bills Vote

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Patriots Vote

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Giants Vote

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Redskins Vote

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Eagles Vote

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Cowboys Vote

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Texans Vote

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Colts Vote

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Titans Vote

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Jaguars Vote

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Falcons Vote

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Panthers Vote

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Buccaneers Vote

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Saints Vote

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Browns Vote

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Ravens Vote

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Bengals Vote

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Steelers Vote

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Vikings Vote

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Lions Vote

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Bears Vote

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Packers Vote

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Rice, Suggs Make Bloomberg List of Most Powerful Athletes

Posted on 25 January 2012 by WNST Staff

New York, NY, January 25, 2012– The New Orleans Saints’ Drew Brees (No. 1), Green Bay Packers’ Aaron Rodgers (No. 2) and New England Patriots’ Tom Brady (No. 3) top the Bloomberg Businessweek/Horrow Sports Ventures 2012 Power 100 ranking of the most powerful professional athletes in the U.S. To determine who the 100 most powerful athletes are on- and off-the-field going into 2012, Bloomberg Businessweek teamed up with Rick Horrow, host of Bloomberg TV “Sportfolio,” and CEO of Horrow Sports Ventures; CSE, a leading integrated marketing agency that created the Power 100 list for the third consecutive year using proprietary methodology; and the Nielsen/E-Poll N-Score.

As the business of sports continues to grow, endorsement contracts increasingly impact players, teams, and the industry. These contracts take into consideration many of the same factors as the Power 100 ranking – performance, name awareness, appeal, influence, trustworthiness and overall popularity, among other things. Social media, for example, played a role in boosting the rankings of such athletes as LeBron James (No. 4) and Shaquille O’Neal (No.7).  The Power 100 rankings are based 50 percent on these on “off-field” measurements, and 50 percent on “on-field” performance using a variety of industry statistics.

The most notable drops this year include injury-plagued Peyton Manning dropping from No. 1 to No. 51 and golfer Phil Mickelson dropping from No. 4 to No. 18. Due to the individual dominance of its top athletes, tennis commands ten percent of the spots on this year’s list, with the top female athlete on the list being American tennis stalwart Serena Williams (No. 25).

In addition, this year’s Power 100 rankings also emphasize the importance of team sports, with the NFL dominating the list with 26 players ranked in the top 100. The National Basketball Association came in second with the most athletes on the Power 100, with 20, followed by MLB baseball (16), tennis (10), golf (8), NASCAR (6), Olympics (4), soccer (4), hockey (3), boxing/MMA (2), and action sports (1).

“This is the third year of the Power 100, and it continues to be a cutting-edge tool to measure the power and value of athletes,” says Horrow, who will devote an entire “Sportfolio” episode to the special report on January 25.  “CSE’s consistent methodology provides the industry’s only analytics to provide integrated on field and off field attributes.”

Top 20:

1-Drew Brees-Football

2-Aaron Rodgers-Football

3-Tom Brady-Football

4-LeBron James-Basketball

5-Rafael Nadal- Tennis

6-Roger Federer-Tennis

7-Shaquille O’Neal-Basketball

8-Shaun White-Action Sports

9-Novak Djokovic-Tennis

10-Calvin Johnson-Football

11-Luke Donald-Golf

12-Tiger Woods-Golf

13-Kobe Bryant-Basketball

14-Dwight Howard-Basketball

15-Eli Manning-Football

16-Dwyane Wade-Basketball

17-Kevin Durant-Basketball

18-Phil Mickelson-Golf

19-Lee Westwood-Golf

20-Troy Polamalu-Football

All NFL players on list:


Athlete Sport

Pro Team / Hometown


Brees, Drew Football

New Orleans Saints


Rodgers, Aaron Football

Green Bay Packers


Brady, Tom Football

New England Patriots


Johnson, Calvin Football

Detroit Lions


Manning, Eli Football

New York Giants


Polamalu, Troy Football

Pittsburgh Steelers


Foster, Arian Football

Houston Texans


Peterson, Adrian Football

Minnesota Vikings


Turner, Michael Football

Atlanta Falcons


Jones-Drew, Maurice Football

Jacksonville Jaguars


Fitzgerald, Larry Football

Arizona Cardinals


Stafford, Matthew Football

Detroit Lions


Rice, Ray Football

Baltimore Ravens


Woodson, Charles Football

Green Bay Packers


Ryan, Matt Football

Atlanta Falcons


Manning, Peyton Football

Indianapolis Colts


Willis, Patrick Football

San Francisco 49ers


McCoy, LeSean Football

Philadelphia Eagles


Allen, Jared Football

Minnesota Vikings


Rivers, Philip Football

San Diego Chargers


Matthews, Clay Football

Green Bay Packers


Gronkowski, Rob Football

New England Patriots


Suggs, Terrell Football

Baltimore Ravens


Welker, Wes Football

New England Patriots


Anderson, James Football

Carolina Panthers


Wallace, Mike Football

Pittsburgh Steelers


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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7: Most Entertaining Sports Figures I’ve Ever Watched

Posted on 02 August 2011 by Luke Jones

In honor of the great Deion Sanders being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton this weekend, today’s Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 was “The 7 Most Entertaining Sports Figures I’ve Ever Seen.”

With Glenn Clark filling in on The Afternoon Drive this week, Drew Forrester kindly included me in the weekly spot.

Remember you can hear our explanations for our Top 7 lists in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault right here.

Luke Jones’ list…

7. Bo Jackson

6. Ray Lewis

5. Randy Moss

4. Tiger Woods

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Paint me as a redneck; golf etiquette is for snobs

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Paint me as a redneck; golf etiquette is for snobs

Posted on 08 April 2011 by WNST Interns

I have thought of countless ways to begin this strongly opinionated rant, and I have concluded that its best to just be blunt; I think some of golf’s deeply rooted traditions are way too drab for the common sports fan’s liking.

This is not a recent awakening for me, by any means. I have felt this way for a long time, but I’m not a close observer of the sport and I have never felt comfortable in writing about the competitive balance or respective performances impacting the pro game.

However, given this is MASTERS WEEKEND, I figure this is as fitting time as any to reveal my informal and personal impressions of the culture surrounding this “gentleman’s game”. Of course, some of my rambling will be meant with jest, while other portions will be from the heart.

Indeed, I’m one of the guys who never really paid the PGA much notice until Eldrick Tont Woods arrived on the scene. Yup, I’m part of that HUGE viewing demographic that will watch portions of the late rounds on Sunday, if Tiger is in the hunt.

All of my additional observations, Thursday thru Saturday, are simply by coincidence …. or if I’m deliberately searching for a soothing voice – such as a golf commentator – to lull me into a Saturday afternoon nap.

I suppose the primary question to consider is “could the PGA do anything to further enhance and solicit the interest of myself and millions of others?” Frankly, I don’t know that answer …. but, I suspect the overall response would be a resounding MAYBE.

I think the PGA is too deeply entrenched in the heritage and rituals of the game. I find some of these rules, regulations and customs to be antiquated, if not silly. But, that’s just my opinion …..

In regard to criticism, I usually confront those who spew confrontational rhetoric with a challenge of suggesting improvements, rather than simply lobbing digs with no useful purpose for building a discussion.

You wanna take shots at the way something is done? Fine, but point out the ways to enhance the same process or product.

Today, I will answer my own challenge and point out what BORES or OFFENDS me about golf’s unique customs, and how I think the PGA could “modernize” its platform, in an effort to be more appealing to the mass audience.

I’m going to point out five particular rule/etiquette changes I would embrace, with overriding objectives of becoming more casual, informal and downright embraceable. In other words, my emphasis would be in conveying the following message to the PGA:


Enough with the rambling, below find my five proposed rule changes:

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If you can't beat 'em .... steal their idea !!!!

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If you can’t beat ’em …. steal their idea !!!!

Posted on 16 March 2011 by WNST Interns


Hey, it’s made more than one career, right?  Don’t invent your own wheel, just take your neighbor’s, when he’s not looking …. smear a little paint or touch-up on it and of course, make it even better.


When I walked into the WNST studios, yesterday, I looked at Ryan Chell and suggested that we add our own selections to the Morning Reaction’s “Tuesday Top-7” theme of the day.  I found it thought provoking, as usual, and I had my own list to share.


However, the Afternoon Drive’s format dictated a little more diligence and we weren’t able to squeeze in our picks for “ESPN Documentaries We Would Like To Make” …..


But, it was after I arrived home for the evening and enjoyed a couple tall glasses of Cherry Vodka and Diet Coke, that a quite original idea crossed my mind.  Funny how that happens, huh? 


Why add to Drew and Glenn’s List? 


Let’s just take it – make it better and give it a different name.  After all, Drew is ALWAYS gonna be hung up on Tiger Woods and Atlanta Braves pitchers.  Glenn, on the other hand, loves Andy Roddick and I’m pretty sure he knows Juan Dixon’s birthday and favorite ice cream flavor.


No surprises, right?  Well, I would imagine that restraining order precluded any Gary Williams mentions for hopeful documentaries …..


I figured my selections would be a little more zany or unpredictable.  But, I need a name for the general concept and subsequent blogs.  How about the “Wednesday Wish List?”  I won’t even need to come up with a weekly idea – I’ll just wait for the sun to set on Tuesday and steal the morning show’s idea.


Without further delay, here’s my WISH LIST for “ESPN Documentaries I would Like To Make” …..





The former Cy Young Award winner has re-invented the pitching motion, in an effort to eliminate the very injury leading to Tommy John surgery.  Today, he is Dr. Mike Marshall, an esteemed graduate of Michigan State University, with a doctorate degree in kinesiology.


He has built a distinguishable track record in developing young pitchers who thrive on his prescribed motion, while minimizing arm injuries.  Marshall suffered serious arm injuries and upon developing his technique rebounded and thrived in the game.  He appeared in a record setting 106 games (with 208 innings amassed) in 1974, all in relief.


Yet, he is shunned by Major League Baseball executives.  He can’t crack any organization, nor the league’s administration, itself.  Why is that?  He would like to know, and I would too …..





If you’re thinking I want to make a documentary based on who the next WWE Champion will be, you’re mistaken.  But, I would like to take a look inside this world of choreographed sports entertainment.  From storyline development to the actual casting of characters, I think it’s a fascinating product.


Yeah, Vince McMahon has hands of gold when emptying the pockets of a certain demographic when it comes to the WWE’s consumers.  But, he employs some of the shrewdest and innovative minds when it comes to development of his shows.  It’s high-tech theatrics blended with physical abilities.


The world of rasslin’ is a soap opera of sorts, but they’ve found a way to get millions of viewers to watch every second of it.  I want to see the product from behind those curtains …..





He’s the ultimate split personality, right?  I’m not so interested in how Chad develops his ideas and ploys for public relevance.  But, I would be interested in taking a look back at his life to see where the narcissism originated.


We know the deal …. he’s an immense talent, purveyor of self-importance and social media star.  But, he’s not a champion, nor has he ever really achieved his potential as a winner.  There must be a reason behind his overachievement in image, while underachieving in on-field success.


What leads a guy to change his name?  What compels a man to latch onto the moments of others?  What causes the outbursts of negativity toward teammates, followed by multiple acts of generosity for complete strangers.  Damn, I’d like to know …..





Yeah, you’re right, I’m not ready to let this go.  Ever since Brandon Davies was dismissed from the BYU basketball team, I’ve cast a discerning eye toward that program.  Something is not adding up and this is probably a storyline to be covered on an upcoming edition of 60 Minutes or Dateline NBC.


The common rationale by American sports consumers is “he agreed to certain rules when he accepted the scholarship.”  For me, that’s a weak way of looking at it.  The BYU “Honor Code” reaches beyond sexual activity, to include caffeine abstinence and use of profanity.

It applies to everyone – not just scholar athletes.  Fair enough – but give me a Friday night in the BYU social circles and I’d be willing to bet I could uncover some cans of Pepsi along with a few slurred bad words.  Hey, it’s against the “Honor Code”.


In fact, I have no doubt that I could walk around the BYU dorms for an isolated hour and profile likely residents who would flunk the ‘ole code if their rooms were searched.  I would love to see a documentary that sheds some transparency on the BYU institution …..





He is without a doubt one of the most polarizing individuals in the pro sports world.  Distinct opinions abound when it comes to Bill Belichick; cheater, champion, aloof, fortunate, gambler.  You name it ….


I think one of the most compelling characteristics about Bill Belichick is he doesn’t give a damn what anybody thinks about him.  He’s probably the complete opposite personality from a Chad Ochocinco.  But, he’s powerful – and he knows it.


Detractors will say Belichick’s success is directly hitched to Tom Brady, because “he stunk” without the Hall of Fame quarterback.  While his early head coaching resume’ is not as polished as this past decade, he did convert a kid who had never taken an NFL snap into an 11 game winner, in 2008.


I think a documentary about Bill Belichick would answer many of the queries posed of him.  Personally, I think he is a GENIUS and I will always be upfront about it …..

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Valentines Special – a few things I don’t LOVE about sports ….

Posted on 14 February 2011 by WNST Interns

I’m guessing the typical Valentines-themed blogs are devoted to expressing LOVE for lists of favorite people, places or things. If you have seen just one “Why I LOVE Baseball” blog, you’ve seen them all, right?

So, leave it to me with breaking traditions and venturing outside the box …..

Today, I’m going to point out a few things I don’t LOVE about sports. I suppose it’s my way of suggesting the world of sports could be more enjoyable for some, and less stressful for others. Without further delay, here ya go …..


I see that Tiger Woods is taking a beating over his “raucous behavior” during this past weekend’s tournament, in Dubai. Are you ready for the awful sin? That’s right, he SPIT while on the golf course.

And, according to published reports, he could be heard “working it up” before allowing the saliva projectile to fly.

For years, Tiger has been scrutinized for his conduct during tournament play. He supposedly uses profanity when upset with himself. Wow …. the nerve of this dude !!!!

It’s a true blessing I’m so polished at this radio gig. God knows if I had to make a living playing golf, I would lose plenty of money to paying fines for cursing, spitting and anything else regarding poor personal decorum.

I wouldn’t wear pants during most tournaments, especially if it’s hot on the course. The same can be said for the boring collared-shirt look. And, I would incite my fans to start making NOISE when my opponent is getting ready to swing.

If you think about it, Tiger Woods is still the only guy people tune in to watch …. if they watch golf. If I was in his shoes, I would just rebel against the establishment …..

I would show up for the opening round in a pair of checkered shorts, Van Halen t-shirt and floppy hat. I would chew tobacco and spit more often than John Kruk. I would have fun with fans and rag my paired partner. I would use profanity if the situation called for it.

Would such conduct lead to Tiger’s dismissal from the PGA Tour? Maybe …..

And, if so, there would be plenty of tycoons ready to fund the new “Checkered Shorts Tour …. featuring Tiger Woods.”

Golfing etiquette is antiquated. The game could be much more fun …..


There was a time when I thought getting updates on the thoughts and ideas of Chad Ocho Cinco would be an insightful event.

I was wrong.

If you’re a follower of Chad, on Twitter, you’re pretty much subjected to his bragging about the luxuries of wealth. I don’t envy him, but I also don’t care about his new sports car, vacation splurges or toys of the week.

I think he’s a hilarious and engaging character, when he speaks. I think he’s a bit of a narcissist when he tweets.

That said, I would suggest following the likes of Ray Rice (RayRice27) and Ozzie Guillen (OzzieGuillen). They’re fun loving, humble and opinionated. What more could you want?


Perhaps, this one is kinda tied to GOLFING ETIQUETTE. After all, it regards a bunch of wealthy guys overdressing for a sporting event, right?

I will never understand why the owner of a National Football League team or Major League Baseball franchise wears a jacket and tie to see his team play a game.

We are led to believe that owners who buy franchises were FANS first. We also think they have the same interest and devotions of the people filling the seats; they want the team to win.

Why wear the formal stuff? Better yet, why not wear the very articles of clothing that define the spirit of the team?

If you were the owner of a pro sports franchise, what would you wear to see your team play?

I would wear whatever I felt like wearing. But, it definitely would not be a jacket and tie. Trust me, I’m not opposed to getting dressed up. I will be wearing a suit to a funeral tomorrow.

But, a baseball or football game? Nah ……

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ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 19: Quarterback Donovan McNabb  of the Washington Redskins on the sidelines against play against the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

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The “Most Disappointing Performers” of 2010 …..

Posted on 22 December 2010 by WNST Interns

A week ago, I introduced my first LIST chronicling sports and events, in 2010. At the time, I guaranteed variations of such rankings, including the GOOD, BAD and downright PATHETIC. For some odd reason, developing this year’s lists has not been an easy endeavor. Hence, the delay in posting …..

Today’s list regards the “MOST DISAPPOINTING PERFORMERS OF 2010”. The criteria are simple; the list applies exclusively to professional athletes and the 2010 year. As always, I look forward to your thoughts and suggestions …..

10) Donovan McNabb – while he certainly maintains a healthy core of supporters, it’s pretty difficult to blindly overlook McNabb’s tumultuous, yet brief stint in the nation’s capital. He’s grinding thru a tough season that has yielded the fewest touchdown passes (14) and most interceptions (15) of his 10 seasons as a starting quarterback.

ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 19: Quarterback Donovan McNabb  of the Washington Redskins on the sidelines against play against the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

It’s become quite obvious that McNabb and Mike Shanahan are not on the same page, as two benchings would certainly indicate. The Redskins are mired in another losing season, and regardless of a potential Hall of Fame career, McNabb must accept a great deal of accountability for a lackluster offensive attack.

Hmmm …. do you think they’re smiling up in Philly?

9) Alex Rodriguez – I never thought this name would appear on such a list; well, not in 2010, anyway. However, I think it’s pretty fair to say A’Rod easily suffered through the worst season of his career as a starting 3rd baseman/shortstop.

Aug. 11, 2010 - Arlington, Texas, USA - August 11, 2010. Yankees third baseman ALEX RODRIGUEZ in the dugout as The New York Yankees played the Texas Rangers in a Major League Baseball game at the Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.

While the Orioles (and a few other teams) would gladly receive a 3rd baseman who hits for a .270 clip, with 30 homers and 125 RBI, the New York Yankees expect much more production. And, when they’re paying that player an annual salary of $33 million, I’d say such demands are warranted.

The 2010 season was a downer for A’Rod, as he’s still counted as a true five-tool player. At 34, his best days are assuredly in the rear view mirror …. but, I’m sure the Steinbrenner’s still expect a batting average in the vicinity of .300, with 35 homers, 30 doubles, 10 steals and 125 RBI.

And, for the money they’re spending …. I don’t blame them.

#8) Chris Johnson – I think everybody remembers Johnson’s season of domination, in 2009, right? He became the sixth player to rush for 2,000+ yards, in NFL history. He basked in the spotlight and became the top pick in most 2010 Fantasy Football Drafts.

JACKSONVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 18: Running back Chris Johnson  of the Tennessee Titans warms up prior to the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on October 18, 2010 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)

Of course, Johnson fed the adoration and suspense by predicting he would rush for 2,500 yards, in this 2010 season. It was a ludicrous goal to set and an even crazier hope for a growing collection of fans. With a couple games remaining, Johnson finds himself with 1,267 rushing yards.

Not a bad year, huh? By most accounts, it wouldn’t be a disappointing season …. but, even Johnson expected and guaranteed more.

7) A.J. Burnett – here’s the one guy who justifies Andy MacPhail’s reluctance to overpay free agents, huh? Just a couple years ago, A.J. Burnett shared prospective shopping lists with Mark Teixeira. As we know, the Orioles made token offers and both players ended up in pinstripes.

New York Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett throws a pitch in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Yankee Stadium in New York City on April 17, 2010.  UPI/John Angelillo Photo via Newscom

While Teixeira has produced at an expected level, Burnett has struggled to achieve the lofty statistics that rendered him one of the most coveted pitchers in the 2008 shopping market. And, 2010 was simply a season to forget, as Burnett produced a 5.26 ERA and 1.51 WHIP, while finding a way to lose more games than he won.

Perhaps, A.J. Burnett is on the shortest leash, heading into 2011. The Yankees are a team that can withstand bad contracts, and unless he recaptures some dominance, Burnett might find himself pitching in Kansas City or Baltimore …. sooner rather than later.

6) Dale Earnhardt Jr. – I have never maintained the belief that Earnhardt was among the very best talents in NASCAR, let alone comparable to the legend of his father. However, I also never foresaw him performing this badly, either.

CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 14: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the  AMP Energy/National Guard Chevrolet, stands in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on October 14, 2010 in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)

We’re approaching three years since Earnhardt won his last race, and he’s finished outside the Top-20 in season standings for two straight years. On a weekly basis, he’s being viewed as just part of the field, rather than a threat win any particular race.

Still, Dale Earnhardt Jr. remains NASCAR’S most popular competitor and he easily earns more money than any fellow driver (and most ballplayers) on an annual basis. Only in America, huh? What’s the incentive to win? Perhaps, Earnhardt’s popularity really is undermining any hunger to win …..

5) Greg Oden – as he’s shelved in his fourth season as a pro basketball player, Oden stands to potentially become one of the biggest BUSTS in NBA history. To date, the former #1 overall pick has earned almost $20 million, while playing in just 82 career games.

ATLANTA - MARCH 30:  Greg Oden #20 of the Ohio State Buckeyes warms up during practice for the NCAA Men's Final Four at the Georgia Dome on March 30, 2007 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Hmmm …. my calculator says that’s about $230,000, per game. Not bad for a night’s work, huh? In 2010, the figures are even uglier – Oden hasn’t played a single game, this year. But, he’s being paid $4.3 million for such services.

To suggest Greg Oden has been a disappointment, in 2010, is an absolute understatement. Then, again, maybe the Trailblazers don’t expect anything from him – which is exactly what he’s giving them.

4) Randy Moss – how about a standing ovation and resounding applause for the first dude who makes both of my BAD lists, in 2010. As the 2010 season winds down, Randy Moss finds himself making no real contribution to the Tennessee Titans offense.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 11: Randy Moss  of the Minnesota Vikings looks on against the New York Jets at New Meadowlands Stadium on October 11, 2010 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Jets won 29-20. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Ironically, the same can pretty much be said for his brief stint, in Minnesota, as well. That’s right, it’s been a couple months since Moss forced his way out of New England – where they’re readying to seize the top seed in the AFC playoff picture.

He entered the 2010 season as one of the most legitimate receivers in the NFL. Yet, thru 14 games, Moss has just 5 touchdowns and 27 receptions. Of the 5 scores, he has only two over the last couple months. Is he disappointment? Yes, very much so …..

3) Lebron James – you can call him King James, All Star or Chosen One …. just don’t call him a WINNER. While his 2010 has been the tale of two cities and teams, Lebron James has failed to establish himself as the driving force behind a corps capable of winning BIG GAMES.

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James stands on the court during the fourth quarter against the Chicago Bulls in game 3 of the first round of the NBA Playoffs at the United Center in Chicago on April 22, 2010. The Bulls won 108-106 and trail the Cavliers 2-1 in the best of seven series.  UPI/Brian Kersey Photo via Newscom

He packed it in against the Celtics, back in May. He chose to flee a team he commanded for a team where he’s surrounded. Leaders don’t need such security – just see Jordan, Magic or Bird.

The story of the 2010-2011 Miami Heat has not been written. They’re winning regular season contests, but will they win the postseason games, where leadership is a MUST? Based on his past, it’s pretty safe to assume Lebron cannot be counted upon when it matters most – and such a reality defines disappointment.

2) Brett Favre – if he just had a crystal ball, huh? In some distinct ways, I feel badly for Favre. He obviously plays the game with a sheer love for the competition, and a legend of his stature should not walk away in such a beaten state.

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - DECEMBER 05: Brett Favre  of the Minnesota Vikings leaves the field after defeating the Buffalo Bills at the Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome on December 5, 2010 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

But, Brett Favre gambled on one season too many. Buoyed by last January’s NFC Championship Game …. and near miss, he caved to pressure from the Vikings and returned for another season and shot at the Super Bowl.

It has proven to be a mistake. Favre wasn’t healthy when the season began and he should’ve been smart enough to realize and accept it. Of course, America’s favorite bimbo, Jenn Sterger, has only added to the dysfunction of this disastrous season.

In the words of the great Clint Eastwood, “a man must know his limitations.” Unfortunately, Brett Favre did not recognize his limitations, as 2010 became his worst season, ever.

#1) Tiger Woods – well, could it really be anyone else? As the entire world knows, Tiger’s life unraveled into a sordid, corrupt mess, in 2010. From adulterous affairs, to domestic discord and lost sponsorships, Tiger lost an awful lot …..

Tiger Woods waits to hit off of the 11th tee box during the first round of the Quail Hollow Tournament in Charlotte, North Carolina on April 29, 2010.  UPI/Kevin Dietsch Photo via Newscom

The losing also carried onto the golf course. He played the worst golf of his professional career and looked totally lost, at times. From the hecklers speckled in the galleries, to the gaudy airplane banners soaring overhead, Tiger’s presence at a golf tournament became very “tabloid-ish”.

However, I think Tiger Woods is the MOST DISAPPOINTING PERFORMER of 2010, because we expect such greatness from him. He is easily the most dominant athlete of the last decade. And, to see his game struggle due to something other than the natural progressions of age or injury is very sad, indeed.

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Are they going to destroy all of our heros?

Posted on 15 October 2010 by WNST Interns

I liked Brett Favre for most of his career, and I still think he’s one of the greatest quarterbacks in history. However I soured on him in recent years when he forced us to go through this will he or won’t he play charade. Step up, make a decision, and stand behind it like a man. However now he has himself in some deeper water than just fence-sitting on whether or not he’s going to play. We all know what’s going on, so I’m not going to re-hash the entire story. But as the title suggests, are they really going to take down every hero we’ve ever had in America…?

…first off, who’s they? The media? The law? The government? Perhaps a bit everything mixed together. There’s no question that we now live in a different world than we did even a decade ago. IF Brett Favre did what he’s being acussed of doing, it was wrong. Not only was it inappropriate for an employee of the New York Jets to do what he did (to a fellow employee), but it was wrong more importantly by his wife. I firmly believe in the institution of marriage, and if I were lucky enough at this stage of my life to have someone with whom I wanted to spend the rest of my days, I can guarantee that I would never cheat on her. (As a single guy that struggles to meet women, I deeply resent people that find someone and then stray.) With that said, I don’t think that what Favre is acussed of doing is unlike things that have happened in any other professional locker room since the beginning of professional sports. Everytime an athlete such as Favre or Tiger Woods is found with his hand in the cookie jar, the powers-that-be seem to take an attitude of we got the dirty fool. We then seem to act as if the person involved is the worst human being on the planet; the hidden message is often that this guy is the only one to have done something like this. Again, are they going to destroy all of our heros?

We’d all be lying to ourselves if we thought that the athletes/celebrities that were caught doing this kind of thing were the only ones to have ever done it. However when someone is caught doing this, we also see media and in some cases the law working almost endlessly to “cover” the story. In some cases the translation of that is that they work endlessly to rip the person to shreds. Again, I have little to no sympathy for any person that cheats on his wife. However I also recognize that one spouse being unfaithful is a situation that should be handled by and between the couple and not in the media. I suppose that if you live in the public eye and you get caught doing something inappropriate you have to expect a certain amount of media scrutiny. However…are they really going to destroy all of our heros?

In my opinion this trend began in 1998-’99 when President Bill Clinton got caught with Monica Lewinsky. That situation seemingly changed all of the rules with regard to how this kind of thing was handled by the media, as well as the law. Without getting specific, enemies of one man (President Clinton) used technicalities in the law to turn cheating on your wife into a federal case. And the media played right along. Many other Presidents had done the exact same thing, but the media granted an executive priviledge so to speak, and never reported it. However once even the President’s sex life was fair game, that changed things for the rest of us as well. And again, if you’re in the group with Tiger Woods and Brett Favre and you live your life in the public eye, you can expect that you’ll have every part of your life scrutinized.

I don’t want to go overboard with this, because I also recognize that the media and the law have a job to do. And I’m not even saying that the law shouldn’t be involved when athletes/public figures screw up. If they do something that’s blatantly illegal, they need to be prosecuted. But we’re not talking about a crime in the case of Brett Favre. And incidentally, I’m not necessarily talking about “mainstream media” such as ESPN, MASN, CNN, CBS, etc. I’m talkng about outlets such as Deadspin, TMZ, etc; the modern day paparazzi. At the end of the day we end up with a “hero” like Brett Favre or Tiger Woods who’s been dragged through the mud to the point that we almost forget all of the good things that he’s done in his sports career. To use a more local example, people have almost ceased to remember what a great basketball player Gilbert Arenas can be due to his off-the-court problems. Furthermore, it’s almost as if his numerous charitable acts in the area were forgotten…because he brought a weapon into a locker room. (I’m not saying that what he did was right, but let’s be fair…)

Ultimately, any person (athletes or otherwise) that makes a mistake should have to attest for it. However I would say that you shouldn’t have to attest for it in an overwhelming manner and in public at that. Did Tiger Woods really need to come before TV cameras and appologize for cheating on his wife? The way I see things he owed a major appology to his wife (and obviously they’re now divorced), but not to the public. The same is true for Brett Favre, IF he did what he’s accused of doing. Cheater or not, Favre should still be considered one of the greatest QB’s of all time. He’s a guy that presumably made a mistake, and will have to attest to it with his wife. And that’s the only person with whom he should attest to it. However again, are they going to destroy all of our heros?

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The Dirty Half-Dozen .....

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The Dirty Half-Dozen …..

Posted on 16 September 2010 by WNST Interns

During yesterday’s AFTERNOON DRIVE, I came across a list of “Most Disliked Athletes In America,” as reported by CNBC. The list was actually compiled through a public survey by the Q Scores Company (www.qscores.com); a firm that conducts a variety of different consumer studies.

I considered broaching the topic during yesterday’s show. However, I was uncomfortable with the list, because it only contained the TOP-6 most disliked athletes and I noticed an immediate distinguishing theme …..






Hmmm ….. do you notice any similar visual characteristics? Without really looking at the featured “bad guys”, I wasn’t going to broach the topic with my audience. I have a responsibility to myself and YOU when it comes to talking about a subject from an informed viewpoint.

That said, I’m really wrestling with the notion that the half dozen most despised athletes are all African American. And, if the survey is accurate, does racial makeup play a part in it?

Of this group, 4 of the 6 have never been charged with a criminal offense. So, that can’t be a social discriminative factor. While some of these players have an animated streak to their personality, none of them are known for being “dirty” competitors on the field, nor have they been censured for performance enhancing drug usage.

So, what makes them so hated? Is it their flamboyance or self indulgent ways? All of them have egos; some have huge egos. But, an overwhelming amount of pro athletes have egos.

Are they selfish toward fans or charitable causes? I don’t see that, either. Perhaps, it’s their wealth? Nah …. once again, most pro athletes are wealthy.

Hmmm ….. all of them are or were at the top of their respective games within the past decade. Maybe that’s it. However, if that’s the case, how does top billing of the infamous not include Peyton Manning, Albert Pujols, Jimmie Johnson, Alex Ovechkin and Drew Brees?

I’m just asking …..

I’ve taken the time to really think about the athletes who are disliked in our sports society. Of course, I’m relying on personal conversations, negative publicity, public perceptions and simple common sense. I came up with this group …..

Ben Roethlisberger – I guess women weren’t surveyed? Maybe, the study was done a year ago? Roethlisberger is universally disliked in our sports society, and his infamy really has nothing to do with his play on the field – outside of Baltimore.

Jeff Gordon – If you’ve never attended a NASCAR event, you’ll simply need to trust me on this one. Jeff Gordon gets bombarded with the most resounding course of BOOS I’ve ever witnessed at a sporting event. And, it happens every single week. He’s never done anything to anyone. He was an “outsider” and he dominated an era. Those days are over, but the HATE lingers on.

Alex Rodriguez – He, too, was disliked for being the greatest of his generation. But, when the steroid allegations became truth, A’Rod’s popularity among most baseball enthusiasts sank below the Mendoza line. He’s brash, conceited and surly, at times. He’s a guy that opposing fans love to taunt.

Tom Brady – Here’s a guy who is HATED and we all know it. Is it the envy? He’s done it all …. Super Bowls, movie star looks, smokin’ hot wife. Yet, fans outside of Beantown hate Tom Brady. How do I know? Well, I’ve always liked him. But, if I mention his name on-air or in conversation, the hate starts pouring out of people.
I suppose these lists can really be taken as pure subjective matter. We see a few of them, annually. Such studies are compiled and released by Forbes, GQ, Mens Daily and others. However, this is my first experience in seeing a list unanimously devoted to one race.

Believe me, I’m not one who hypes bias of any kind, to include racial considerations. When race is arbitrarily injected into issues or recklessly expolited by persons who just want to provide a convenient excuse, people become divided. That’s not my intent.

However, I do think the Q Scores list is questionable and I just felt compelled to write about it.

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Born, Died & The Dirt .....

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Born, Died & The Dirt …..

Posted on 30 June 2010 by WNST Interns

If you’ve listened to the afternoon show, you’re probably familiar with the NEWS segments @ 4pm. Along with breaking sports stories, we’ve also devoted time to birthdays, deathdays and a salacious story, or two.

Today, I’ll change it up a bit and give you a sampling of such historic events and storylines for your daily reading. We’ll still mention a few of these things during the ‘NST NEWS @ 4pm. However, the NEWS will now become more condensed and emphasized on the day’s breaking sports topics. We’ll still include an “On This Day” feature on the back end, and fit a birth and death in there ….

Born Today





Died Today


I guess it should come as no surprise that Tiger Woods headlines our inaugural edition of THE DIRT. Well, he sorta headlines it …..

One of Tiger’s shag-dolls has a new movie coming out. Of course, that would mean it’s Jocelyn James ….as she’s trying to CASH IN on her tie to Tiger, once again. This girl makes Glenn Close’s character in “Fatal Attraction” look like Mother Teresa. To date, James’ digs at making a few bucks off Tiger have been pretty lame. However, she’s finally hit a funny note …..

Her newest pornographic flick, THE 11th HOLE, is being released and the promotions trailer/images are finally out …..

I can’t admit to finding much humor in the whole Tiger debacle. That said, the above promo photo is HILARIOUS !!!!

Have a GREAT DAY – we’ll chat with ya 2pm !!!!

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