Sports


Golf pro and ESPN analyst Paul Azinger has run afoul of the network’s social media policy after he tweeted about President Obama playing golf on Martha’s Vineyard.

Facts: Potus has played more golf than I have.  I have created more jobs this month than he has.

USA Today reported that ESPN wasn’t too happy about Azinger’s tweet:

“Paul’s tweet was not consistent with our social media policy, and he has been reminded that political commentary is best left to those in that field,” spokesman Andy Hall told Game On! in a statement.

Asked if Azinger, who won the 1993 PGA Championship, will be reprimanded, suspended or fired, Hall said Sunday: “He will not be fired – he was reminded about ESPN’s social media policy, and we’re all moving on.”

Azinger declined an interview request after the public rebuke from ESPN. Azinger sent off two tweets Friday, both about Tiger Woods, then went silent on Twitter Saturday. The 12-time PGA tour winner joined ESPN in 2010.

 

While Azinger was called on the carpet for hitting on Obama ESPN didn’t feel the same about Kenny Mayne’s anti-Palin tweet just two months ago.

This had less to do with violating the network’s social media policy than Azinger getting on the wrong side of the political spectrum and exposes the politically correct atmosphere that not only pervades the mainstream media but has also found it’s way into sports journalism as well.

Is nothing sacred anymore?

 

 

 

 

Cincinnati Bengals star receiver Chad Ochocinco who has become more notorious for his tweets than his play on the gridiron raised the ire of many of his fans when he tweeted on Saturday that he was reading conservative radio talk show host Glenn Beck’s book Broke.

As Ochocinco told his fans after they fired off a barrage of unhappy tweets he isn’t a conservative but he wanted to see what all the fuss was about regarding Beck.

I’m not sure how fast a reader Ochocinco is but as long as the NFL lockout continues he’ll have plenty of time to finish reading Beck’s book.

Read the story here.

 

Growing up as a child I can remember sitting by my transistor radio (remember them) listening faithfully to my beloved but hapless Washington Senators.  Those were the days of Dick Bosman, Eddie Brinkman, Toby Harrah and local hero and fan favorite Frank Howard who was the Senators version of Harmon Killebrew without the patience at the plate.

Every July I would look forward to baseball’s mid-summer classic the All-Star game where I could watch the true stars of the game play for bragging rights as to which league had the superior talent.

Back then the stars were selected by players and managers and the system worked well and television ratings were solid as cable television and the internet didn’t exist to coax viewers away.

Gradually MLB gave fans some say in the game by allowing fans to vote their favorites in changing the game from one where the best players of the year were selected to one where popularity mattered more than statistics.  And that was all well and fine since if that’s who the fans want to watch then they should be able to.  Then they made another change requiring that every team have at least one representative further diluting the worth of a selection to the team.  However this year so many players that were voted in opted out of playing due to injury or other reasons that the game became a farce.

Predictably then without Derek Jeter and other big name stars playing the ratings sank to an all-time low.

As someone who throughout my childhood and teenage years who rarely missed an All-Star game I pretty much forgot about it and only checked the score a couple of times on the internet.

If baseball wants to revive fan interest in the game they need to let the fans both the best players in, drop the one representative per team requirement and limit the number of substitutes if a player is injured and can’t play.  Since the game has little significance except to gain home field advantage in the World Series (another dumb idea) who cares if the team has a full roster?  Just set a maximum number of players per team of 30 and let the chips fall where they may.

The current system cheapens the value of an All-Star selection and is more about being politically correct than promoting the national pastime and it’s time to put an end to this folly.

Without using the R word Minnesota Twins second baseman Orlando Hudson made a veiled accusation that teams in Major League Baseball are guilty of racism for not signing older black players to contracts this year.

Specifically Hudson referred to 36 year-old Jermaine Dye and 41 year-old Gary Sheffield who remain unsigned as the season begins.

But is racism the reason that Dye and Sheffield aren’t playing baseball this season.  Dye who hit 27 home runs for the Chicago White Sox reportedly had offers from both the Washington Nationals which could use another power hitter and the Chicago Cubs but turned them down since they offered far less than the $11.5 million he made in 2009.

Sheffield who has bounced around baseball and has hit 509 home runs in a 21-year career has seen his productivity drop considerably in the last three years.  Once a reliable 20 plus  a year home run guy he managed to hit just 10 last year in 100 games with the New York Mets and has lost some foot speed as well. He too has apparently turned down offers.

Hudson though ignores the fact that Dye has offers but would rather not play than accept a lower salary, and that Sheffield’s is not the player he once was.

In order to support his bogus claim he cites the salaries given to some white ballplayers whose production has sagged recently as evidence of racism.  What Hudson fails to note is that those players are signing for far less money that Dye made last year and apparently was willing to accept.

It’s not racism it’s economics.  Thanks to the recession which has reduced gate receipts owners for the first time are beginning to treat their teams more like a business which means that they should only pay a player what they think he is worth or what the market will bear.  For Dye and Sheffield it isn’t $10 plus million a year.

Hudson needs to remove the chip off his shoulder and just concentrate on playing baseball.  If Dye and Sheffield really want to play this year then she should accept salaries that are more commensurate with the market and not let someone like Hudson whine and try to play the race card.

Political correctness has no place in sports and those that try to change the game to reflect their views should either keep them to themselves or get out.

ESPN’s blonde bombshell sideline reporter Erin Andrews has certainly been receiving plenty of shall I say exposure lately over a video psoted recently on the internet where she is seen prancing nude in her hotel room.

The video was apparently shot using some type of peephole camera and was clearly a violation of Andrews’ privacy and while she is probably a heck of a lot more popular than before the video release she is also that much more embarrassed.

The worst part about this though is that the media actually considers this news.  And it is their voyeurism that has pushed this story to the front of the sports pages as well as spreading like wildfire through the internet.

Why should we care what someone does in their hotel room?  Would this be a story if Al Michaels was filmed doing the same thing?  Not that anybody would want to watch that but I think you get the point.

For me this is much ado about nothing but for Andrews it could ultimately derail her career and that would be a shame.

Normally I wouldn’t spend any time writing about sports, but with the BCS championship game taking place tonight and the fact that the national champion will emerge with having lost one game this year I thought I’d throw my two cents into the ring.

Actually the main reason I feel the need to comment is that Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff is investigating whether or not the BCS system violates anti-trust provisions which will prevent Utah from being crowned the national champion.

This is ridiculous! My father was born in Utah and attended the U in the1940’s.  I have cousins and other relatives to attend various Utah colleges and universities and my own children attend BYU.  Yet despite my obvious ties to Utah, I think Shurtleff is off his rocker.  What is a politician doing wading into the business of college football?

Everyone knows that teh BCS system is flawed, and this year the flaws were particularly acute as one team after another ascended to the No. 1 position during the season only to lose  and hope that they would be given a second chance.  Utah never reached the pinnacle in the polls , but fought well and hard to gain their top 10 and well deserved ranking.  They did bolster their case by thoroughly beating Alabama last month in the Sugar Bowl but that was just one game where top teams often falter against lesser opponents for some reason and isn’t a fair test of how good a team is. After all it has always been referred to as a mythical championship since it based on one game with teams selected by a system few people understand.

The BCS system has now taken what was once an enjoyable bowl season and turned it into a very dull affair.  I normally would have watched part or all of the major bowl games, but between the lackluster matchups and a schedule that defied all reason I saw only a few games and I don’t feel like I missed anything.

To be fair, Utah deserves to be rated in the top 5 when the final polls come out, but until they play the likes of Texas, Florida, Oklahoma or USC we really won’t know how good the team is or could have been.