The book on everything ESPN, and an ombudsman finally speaks
The two previously collaborated on
"I love sports and I love television so I wanted to tackle this," said Miller.
Shales and Miller first met with ESPN executives nearly two years ago; the network told them they would not participate in the project. "We asked for their cooperation and they were very kind with their response, but they said we don't want to participate," Miller said. In fact, Miller said he was initially not allowed on ESPN's Bristol campus for onsite research and interviews despite repeated requests for access.That nine-month "ban" from the beginning of the project through last spring has since been lifted (he has made a dozen trips to Bristol during the course of research, which has included watching shows from the set and various interviews).
Why did ESPN decide not to formally cooperate with the authors? "Two primary reasons," said
LaPlaca added that ESPN initially opted not to give on-campus access to Miller because "we just thought it would be less of a distraction for our people if interviews were done off campus."
Miller had only complimentary things to say about his dealings with the network's communication department. The author said he is 95 percent done with interviews of ESPN employees, but there will be more fact-checking conversations. His total interviews (including multiple interviews with the same subject) has passed 500. "We have left the decision on whether or not to be interviewed up to individuals," LaPlaca said. "In each case, it was a personal decision with no pressure either way from the company."
The groundwork for the book (you can follow the book
"ESPN is obviously a huge success story and we are trying to trace the pedigree of that success," Miller said. "It's not enough just to say look how big they are. It's trying to understand how they got to this position and what were the important moments along the way that enabled them to be in this position. There are real tipping points. It didn't happen by accident. There are a couple of times if something had not happened or somebody else had done something at a certain time, it would not be what it is right now. "
Jones-Drew said he will give as much fantasy information as possible but won't reveal his own team's injuries. Nor will he start any player who is playing against the Jaguars that week.
As to why a fantasy sports radio channel might be successful,
As for the piece itself, it was Ohlmeyer's most thoughtful and powerful yet, and the existence of it (even late) helps save the credibility of the position. The major omission was not hearing from
These are important and powerful words and they carry significance because of Ohlmeyer's position. The ombudsman also called out the network to establish formal journalistic guidelines, which might be an impossible exercise at a place with as many tentacles as ESPN, but good of him to illuminate it. Since it's always fun to offer suggestions for ESPN, especially because the odds of them taking me up on them are about the same as a
Even a brief comment on "The Decision" within the first 48 hours, with a note saying more would be coming in the days ahead, would have aided Ohlmeyer greatly. Instead, his delayed response became part of the story. Much like "The Decision," here's hoping that doesn't happen again.
In the annals of spectacular sports media falls,
During Sirius's press outing on Wednesday, SI.com spoke with Phillips, 47, about his life since his public fall. Newsday's
Last week the noted sportswriter
"I felt compelled to say something," Kindred said. "I wanted to narrow the argument to what I thought the argument was. I hold journalists and myself to a high standard. I think we can't make up stuff. I think we can't assume stuff. I don't think we can print stuff that we don't know has happened. So I held that strike against Mitch. His body of work certainly has been outstanding, but for me on this one issue, I have always voted for other people. When I saw Mitch won, I thought I should say why I had not voted for him."
(For a recap of the journalistic transgression by Albom referenced by Kindred,
Kindred said he has not heard from Albom nor does he expect he will. (Kindred will also be busy over the next couple of weeks promoting his new book,