NBC's Al Michaels gets fed up with NFL referees, asks question everyone is thinking.
1. Another weekend of football, another weekend of referees showing their complete ineptitude. It's one thing to miss a call on a bang-bang play, but the continuing trend of getting calls wrong AFTER instant replay is just baffling. And it seems to happen in every game.
Things are made even worse for viewers at home because each of the networks think they need a former ref to be part of the broadcast so they can explain things to us, but they're often wrong, too, so what's the point?
NBC's Al Michaels was fed up with it all during Sunday's Eagles-Bears game and couldn't hold back any longer. When you're 74 years old, a legend and the play-by-play person for the best game each week, you can pretty much do what you want, so Al asked the question all fans have wondered about the refs at some point: "They’re not making this up on the fly, are they?"
Not many announcers could get away with this line without hearing from a network executive and/or the NFL. And Al might hear something this week, but he doesn't care. That's the perk of being the best in the business.
2. Speaking of announcers, we're thinking about rescinding our "Broadcast Team of the Year" award to Joe Buck and Troy Aikman after Buck mispronounced Mark-Paul Gosselaar's name on Saturday night while reading a promo. If you don't know the name of the man who portrayed one of the greatest characters in TV history in Zack Morris, we can't sing your praises. At least some funny tweets came from Buck saying, "Goss-EL-aar."
Dammit Joe Buck. You really just pronounced in Mark Paul Gas-ee-lar. You don't disrespect Zack Morris like that.— Andy Pacconi (@andypacconi) January 6, 2019
A disgusting act by Joe Buck attempting to pronounce Mark-Paul Gosselaar's name.— Ethan Booker (@Ethan_Booker) January 6, 2019
I didn't know that was Zack Morris in the new show The Passage until I heard Joe Buck say his name all weird during the Cowboys game. Mark Paul Goss Sell Ar— Shonuts Cheliboos (@ShogunChelios) January 6, 2019
Has Joe Buck never watched Saved By the Bell? Mark Paul Gas A Lar?— Jumsy (@Jumsy81) January 6, 2019
3. Hot on the heels of the political controversy surrounding a congresswoman calling Donald Trump a motherf---er, the sports world now has its own kerfluffle over salty languague.
Tony Romo just said “Rivers is pissed.” I didn’t realize such language was appropriate on national television.— Ed Werder (@EdwerderRFA) January 6, 2019
If you want to laugh, I highly recommed you read the replies to Werder's tweet.
4. Twitter never ceases to amaze. The show Surviving R. Kelly generated lots of talk since it began airing a few days ago. One viewer somehow made the connection between R. Kelly's abhorent and vile behavior and the Bears' loss since Kelly is from Chicago.
Until R Kelly go to jail Chicago ain’t winning NOTHING.— Boobie The Great (@BuddyNoLove) January 7, 2019
5. Niners teamates Jimmy Garoppolo, Richard Sherman and George Kittle partied together in Vegas over the weekend and joined Nelly on stage for a spirited version of Montell Jordan's classic "This Is How We Do It". Keep an eye on Kittle in the background. A strong effort all around by him.
6. The latest SI Media Podcast features a roundtable discussion about The Office. Rolling Stone chief TV critic Alan Sepinwall and former MLB pitcher Dan Haren joined me for a fun, passionate conversation on everything Office. The biggest takeaway from listeners was Haren's bombshell confession that Kevin Malone is the show's worst character. You can listen to the podcast below or download it on iTunes.
7. RANDOM YOUTUBE VIDEO OF THE DAY: If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I spent the weekend watching The Sopranos marathon running on HBO2 in between watching the NFL playoffs. This scene of HBO worlds colliding always kills me.
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IN CLOSING: I'm going with Clemson +5.5 over Alabama tonight.