NCAA tourney viewer's guide, Barkley's odd CBS relationship, more

Monday March 17th, 2014

TNT's NBA crew, Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley, will lead the Turner's NCAA coverage.
Reid B. Kelley/NBAE /Getty Images

Welcome to the salad days for March Madness broadcasting. Last year's Division I men's basketball tournament across CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV was the most-watched NCAA tournament in 19 years. Tournament games averaged 10.7 million viewers, the highest average for the tournament since it averaged 11.2 million viewers in 1994. The title game between Louisville and Michigan drew 23.4 million viewers, up 12 percent from the previous year. These are the kinds of numbers that keep the champagne on ice at the executive offices of CBS Sports and Turner Sports

While CBS/Turner kept the changes to a minimum last year, this year's NCAA tournament offers mega-alterations for viewers, including a brave new way to watch the national semifinal games. To help guide you through the changes, here is a Q&A primer on viewing this year's television madness.

How many games will each network broadcast?

CBS Sports and Turner Sports will provide live coverage of all 67 games of the tournament across four networks -- TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV. CBS will air 22 games, including the title game, Elite Eight, Sweet 16 and second- and third-round games. TBS will televise 20 games, including the Final Four (we'll explain this in full below), Elite Eight, Sweet 16 and second- and third-round games. TruTV, will air 14 games, including the First Four, second and third rounds and the Final Four. TNT will televise 13 games, including second- and third-round games and the Final Four.

Which broadcasters will be calling the tournament?

Here are the broadcast teams that you'll see prior to the Final Four:

• Jim Nantz (play-by-play), Greg Anthony (analyst) and Tracy Wolfson (sideline).
• Marv Albert (play-by-play), Steve Kerr (analyst) and Craig Sager (sideline).
• Verne Lundquist (play-by-play), Bill Raftery (analyst), and Allie LaForce (sideline).
• Kevin Harlan (play-by-play), Reggie Miller (analyst), Len Elmore (analyst), and Rachel Nichols (sideline).
• Ian Eagle (play-by-play), Jim Spanarkel (analyst), and Lewis Johnson (sideline).
• Brian Anderson (play-by-play), Dan Bonner (analyst), and Kristine Leahy (sideline).
• Spero Dedes (play-by-play), Doug Gottlieb (analyst), and Jaime Maggio (sideline).
• Andrew Catalon (play-by-play); Mike Gminski (analyst); Otis Livingston (sideline).

What about the studio coverage?

Much different from last year. Ernie Johnson is the lead studio host for the Final Four and he'll work out of New York City with analysts Charles Barkley, Clark Kellogg and Kenny Smith. That group also will be on-site at the Final Four. Others who will float through the main studio set at the Final Four include Gumbel, Gottlieb, analysts Seth Davis and Grant Hill, and various college coaches. Matt Winer will anchor the Atlanta studio with analysts Davis, Hill and Steve Smith. Gottlieb will contribute from Atlanta, beginning with regional semifinal action. There will be a three-hour live, on-site pregame show airing on TBS prior to the national semifinals.

So who will call the national semifinals on April 5 and championship game on April 7?

The finals will be called by Nantz, Anthony and Kerr on CBS -- and the opening tip time has been moved up to 9:10 p.m. ET, 13 minutes earlier from last year. CBS will also air a full 30-minute pregame show prior to the title game starting at 8:30 p.m.

What about the semifinals?

Relax. We'll get to the semis in a moment.

This isn't the same broadcast and studio lineup as last year, right?

Correct. Anthony replaced Kellogg on the Final Four broadcast crew while Kellogg is now one of the main studio analysts. Johnson, the ringleader of the Inside The NBA circus, has moved up to the lead host of the studio for the national semifinals and championship game. Two-time NCAA champion Hill is a rookie studio analyst. Catalon is a new play-by-play announcer, partnering with Gminski. Tim Brando, sadly, will not call games this year as he has left CBS.

So what's the deal for the national semifinals on April 5?

For starters, TBS will televise both national semifinal games, the first time in tournament history the semifinal games will be televised on a cable network. But here's an even bigger nod toward the cable side of the partnership: The semifinals will air across three cable networks this year -- TBS, TNT and truTV. TBS will air the traditional Final Four broadcast -- aiming for neutrality -- with Nantz, Anthony and Kerr. But here's where it gets interesting: The telecasts on TNT and truTV will be team-specific broadcasts where a separate play-by-play announcer, analyst and sideline reporter (Turner and CBS will start negotiating with potential broadcasters after the Sweet 16) will be encouraged to call the game with as much homerism as their pom-poms can muster. The "Teamcast" productions will have separate production crews, a custom halftime show, and custom graphics and stats geared toward each team. Commercials will be the same for all three telecasts. The title game will air on CBS two nights later.

Isn't this copying what ESPN did with its "Megacast" for the college football title game?

The Turner Sports brass says nyet. "We made that announcement prior to them doing the national championship game and it is going to be a lot different than what they did," said Turner Broadcasting president David Levy. "They didn't televise three different ways, so it's a very different direction. The ultimate thing is how we are doing storytelling for these games."

Who will be the announcers for these team-specific broadcasts?

That won't be decided until after the Sweet 16. Turner Sports senior vice president Craig Barry said he has a spreadsheet in his Atlanta office with a list of 120 potential announcers depending on the teams that advance. Ideally, Barry said he wants broadcasters with a level of professional experience who have called games in some form for those schools. It's not inconceivable a team's radio broadcasters would freelance for Turner Sports for the day. "If we can create an extended experience that really generates a lot of excitement and differentiates itself from our national telecast, then we have done our job," Barry said.

Is this a good idea?

Absolutely. Why? Because it offers viewers more options. Whether the teamcasts come off as Wayne World is anyone's guess. "I want to see how it works," Barkley said. "It's going to be very interesting. Some of those local guys are such homers. You have to be careful. Some of these guys are ridiculous, it makes you laugh sometimes."

When does the basketball start and who will broadcast the First Four games on Tuesday and Wednesday?

The games will air on truTV, with pregame coverage starting at 6:00 p.m. ET and the tip coming about 40 minutes later. Anderson, Bonner, and Leahy will work Albany-Mount St. Mary (6:40 p.m. ET) and NC State-Xavier. Harlan, Elmore, Miller and Nichols will be the crew on Wednesday for Iowa-Tennessee (6:40 p.m.) and Cal Poly-Texas Southern. Studio coverage for the First Four will originate from Atlanta with Winer and analysts Davis, Hill and Steve Smith.

Any other production elements of note?

Indeed. Deb Gelman will co-produce CBS's studio coverage from New York, the first woman assigned to produce the Tournament studio show in the network's history.

What changes will we see with the NCAA March Madness Live app?

There are a host of new features, including a new bracket layout, a redesigned GameCenter experience, a fresh Bracket Challenge game and enhanced social features. The app will be available to consumers for the first time on the Windows Store, as well as the App Store and Google Play. Viewers will have direct access to live radio broadcasts, courtesy of Westwood One, for all 67 games across the collection of digital products. Games broadcast on CBS are free on NCAA March Madness Live. TBS, TNT and truTV games require viewers to login to NCAA March Madness Live using their pay TV provider information. The March Madness Live App will have all three semifinals broadcasts available for viewing.

What happens if you are in your car during games?

Westwood One owns the free radio broadcast of the tournament. SiriusXM will air live play-by-play of every game on Sirius channels 91, 85, 86, 92, 93 and 94 and XM channels 91, 86, 190, 191, 192 and 193. The hosts and analysts for the tournament on SiriusXM College Sports Nation include former coaches Bobby Cremins, Tom Brennan, Steve Lappas and Bruce Pearl, former Final Four MOPs Mateen Cleaves and Miles Simon, as well as Tim Brando, Mark Packer, Chris Childers and Jason Horowitz.

Did anything strike you from the mouths of one of the analysts that will help me with my brackets?

First, Kellogg said to keep an eye on Mercer as a sleeper for brackets. He was all over FGCU early last year, so his track record with sleepers is good. Kellogg also talked about the impact of Kansas losing freshman center Joel Embiid for the opening round games. "First, he's a rim protector and it seems like he's gotten better within games and not just game to game," Kellogg said. "Two, when you lose time, you have no idea how you will come back if you even will come back. It's easy to lose 30 to 40 percent of your conditioning when you have to take off a week. That's a significant blow. Bill Self is a Hall of Fame coach and he has really good talent. They will find a way to compete but it changes them dramatically."

Any predictions?

Here's how the CBS Selection Show studio crew sees the Final Four and title game.

The Noise Report

Charles Barkley feels the tension he felt from some at CBS at last year's tourney has eased this year.
Brett Davis/USA Today Sports examines some of the more notable sports media stories of the past week

1. Though he would not name specific colleagues, Barkley said Turner's NBA announcers were given the cold shoulder from CBS's on-air college basketball staffers at the beginning of the CBS/Turner partnership. "Some of these guys are jerk---s," he said, refusing to name names when pressed. "They didn't treat us very well because they thought we were trying to take their jobs. You could just tell there was a little tension in the beginning. 'Dude, I'm not trying to take your job. I'm not even sure we want to do this.' But Dan Bonner was great to me and called me and said here's my number and anytime you want to talk about players or teams. He was a great resource. Some of these guys were a little distant. I should not call them jerk---s. But they were a little distant. They looked at it like a competition. I mean, dude, we're not trying to take your job. Relax. They have gotten a lot better, because I think they realize, number one, they didn't lose their job. We are in this together. And we are going to do this during March Madness. I think the tension has eased and we've done a lot better, but the first time we got together they weren't very friendly."

1a. If Barkley were NBA commissioner, he would make one immediate change: No player can enter the NBA draft until the completion of his sophomore year of college. Here's some other Chuckster thoughts on the Knicks and Phil Jackson.

1b. ESPN recorded its most-viewed college basketball regular season this year, averaging 1,454,000 viewers. For the season, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU combined to televise 586 games exclusively and averaged 501,000 viewers across those platforms.

1c. The most-viewed ESPN college basketball game this season came on Feb. 1 when Syracuse defeated Duke 91-89 in overtime. The game averaged 4,745,000 viewers, the network's third most-viewed regular-season men's college basketball game on record (since 1991-92 season). ESPN's most-watched game was March 8, 2008, when North Carolina at Duke drew 5,612,000 viewers.

1d. For the 12th consecutive year, Louisville was the highest-rated local market for ESPN's regular-season telecasts. Greensboro, N.C., Kansas City and Raleigh-Durham finished tied for second. The remaining top 10: Memphis, Columbus, Cincinnati, Knoxville, Dayton, and Indianapolis.

1e. If you want an example of how tough it is to defeat ESPN for fledgling networks: Fox Sports 1 televised 145 college basketball games this season, averaging 75,000 viewers. ESPN aired 117 games, and averaged 1.1 million viewers.

1f. CBS Sports producer Charlie Bloom consistently does exceptional work. Here's his piece on the charity work of Marquette basketball coach Buzz Williams.

1g. Nantz missed the Big Ten tournament to be with his wife, Courtney, who gave birth to a baby girl.

2. Trading emails with ... Adam Schefter, after one of the best weeks of his career: What kind of hours did you put in last week?

Schefter: On free agency or this questionnaire? I actually sat down to do this at 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday afternoon and just as I started, Ben Tate landed a two-year, $7 million deal in Cleveland. And then, when I got back to the questionnaire, Julian Edelman re-upped with New England. Back to the questionnaire, and former Saints safety Roman Harper landed a two-year deal in the NFC South with the Carolina Panthers. And then, an hour later, I was back to doing this questionnaire. That's a long way of saying that it never stopped all week. Every night last week that I went back to the Bristol hotel, I thought and hoped maybe this will be the night I get some rest. One night was Jonathan Martin, Aqib Talib, Austin Howard and DeMarcus Ware traveling to Denver. The next night it was Darrelle Revis reaching agreement with New England, Rodger Saffold flunking his physical in Oakland and heading back to St. Louis while Eric Decker was re-signing with the Jets. Basically, when it comes to the NFL, but especially in weeks of firings and hirings, free agency and the draft, there is no punching out on the clock. How competitive are you with other NFL news outlets on such a week?

Schefter: You're aware of them, of course, but you're just trying to dig in and do the best job that you can. We have such a great and deep team with so many people chipping in on a week like this. From the day I got to ESPN, nobody has been more welcoming and gracious than Mort (NFL reporter Chris Mortensen) and I can't imagine covering the league without him. I respect and love him. Josina Anderson distinguished herself last week, nailing the Julius Peppers-to-the-Packers story. Adam Caplan is a grinder who had the Zane Beadles deal to Jacksonville. Ed Werder reported Dallas finally had cut DeMarcus Ware. If all of our people are doing their job as well as they do, I'm confident we'll get more than our fair share of the news.

Believe it or not, what drives me is my boss, Seth Markman. He knows how to push my buttons. Before free agency every year, he gives me a list of players and the stories he wants me to get. This year he dubbed it "The Markman 50." He promised me $1 -- very Trading Places-ish -- for each name I got. Maybe I shouldn't admit this, but I was obsessed with landing every player I could on The Markman 50. It had nothing to do with the dollar, and everything with the competition with him. We would argue about whether guys belonged, where the credit should be. Even when a player like Ravens linebacker and Markman 50er member Daryl Smith re-signed, it brought me far more gratification than it should. When Seth first sent me this year's list, he wrote he expected 45 of the 50 stories. So considerate of him to leave such a wide margin of error. All week I felt like I was competing to get as many players as possible on The Markman 50. I told him he's driving me like a mule. He offered not to do it next year. I told him it's like going through boot camp; you're better for having gone through it. Out of all the stories you reported this past week, was there one news break that stood out above the rest on process, and if so, why?

Schefter: Interestingly enough, the one story that stands out came Wednesday night, as my producer Ashoka Moore -- who did a great job this week handling all the ESPN show requests -- was dropping me off back at my hotel. Before I got out of the car, he told me that in the nine years he has worked at ESPN, he never had as much fun as he did the past two days, which were Tuesday and Wednesday. We were working in the ESPN green room, grinding away, digging up stories, putting them out, and repeating the cycle. A bunch of guys like Tedy Bruschi, Mark Schlereth, Ryan Clark, Herm Edwards, Bill Polian and Ashoka were all hanging out in the green room, talking about all the moves. They were watching me, making fun of me, laughing at me because I'm in my own world at a time like that, where nothing else in the world matters. Most of those guys also commented about how much fun they had those two days; Ryan Clark loved it. When your co-workers are enjoying all the things that we're doing as a team, and they tell you that they never had that much fun in all their time there, that's more memorable than any story that week. How often do you feel other places do not accurately cite your reporting?

Schefter: Really don't worry about it too much. What irks me is how much criticism ESPN gets for that when I believe we do a better job of any media outlet crediting the outlets that break the news. ESPN has worked hard to craft a crediting policy, spent a lot of time on it, and while it's not perfect, this I know: It's better than the way most places credit. Then again, what does it really matter? The public just wants NFL information as fast as it can get it. We had a fun and memorable week trying to make it happy. I'm just glad it slowed down enough Saturday afternoon to finally get done this questionnaire.

3. Last Wednesday the official word came down that Brent Musburger will no longer call ABC's Saturday Night Football package or the national title game. Instead, Musburger and Jesse Palmer will serve as the lead broadcast team for the upcoming SEC Network when it launches in August. The new team will debut on Aug. 28, when the Aggies visit the Gamecocks. Musburger, who turns 75 in May, said in an interview with on Thursday that he was told that he would not call next season's national championship in the press box prior to the BCS title game in January by ESPN president John Skipper and ESPN executive vice president for programming and production John Wildhack. He did have advance warning where management was heading that day, given his brother and agent, Todd, had asked ESPN management what direction they were going in with the Saturday Night package and title games.

On merit, as far as I'm concerned, Musburger should still have his job. But ESPN also needs a successor for a 70-something broadcaster, and the candidates for the job had both the skill sets and contractual leverage. Musburger, in an interview with, took the high road. "I'm enthused about doing SEC games," he said. "This is not, 'Oh my goodness, I'm not doing the national championship game.' I'm going to spend that night, in fact, with my wife and sons in Montana. We'll sell (betting) squares, and have a great time. I'm in a very good place. I'm an old guy with a three-year contract and I can afford to buy my own beer." You can read the rest of the Musburger interview here.

4. The winner of Musburger sweepstakes? Chris Fowler. The longtime ESPN standout will be Musburger's play-by-play replacement for ABC's Saturday Night Football package. Fowler will work with analyst Kirk Herbstreit and sideline reporter Heather Cox on the assignment, as well as become the voice of the college football playoff, including the national championship game. Also important to college football fans, Fowler will continue to host College GameDay, a position he has held since 1990. The 51-year old will also remain a commentator on ESPN's tennis coverage, which includes the Australian Open, French Open, U.S. Open and Wimbledon. James Andrew Miller, who wrote a best-selling book on the history of ESPN, tweeted that Fowler's new contract (which runs through 2023) is worth $35 million with a yearly average in the mid-$3 million range. Here's the story on Fowler getting the job.

5. The next talent domino for ESPN management to address is Rece Davis, a standout studio and game performer whose contract is coming up. Davis was also interested in becoming Musburger's replacement, and currently calls ESPN's Thursday Night college football package, along with hosting college football and college basketball studio shows. "We love Rece Davis," Wildhack said in an interview last Thursday. "We love the work he does for us. Rece is a very important and valued contributor to what we do in the college space. I would like to see him remain in that position for years to come. We want him for a long, long time."

6. ESPN NFL analyst Chris Mortensen was noticeably absent during last week's free-agency frenzy reporting. Said an ESPN spokesperson: "Nothing to it. He played a big role for us at the Combine and you will see him lots next week at the NFL owners meetings, when NFL Insiders will be live from Orlando. We are fortunate to have Adam Schefter and a deep roster. Mort's one of our top guys. Nothing's changed there."

7. Sports pieces of note:

Boston Globe reporter Bob Hohler on 'When Goodfellas collided with BC basketball.'

• Richard Sandomir on ESPN anchor Stuart Scott's approach to cancer.

USA Today sports staffer Mike Foss on the death of his best friend.

• Former NBA and Kentucky basketball player Rex Chapman on being stalked by a fan.

Akron Beacon Journal Cavaliers writer Jason Lloyd had a really thoughtful piece on what happens when sports news breaks at odd hours.

Seattle Times reporter Jayson Jenks on what killed former Seahawk Grant Feasel.

Plenty of non-sports pieces of note:

• Cannot encourage you enough to read and share this Ron Suskind piece on reaching his autistic son through Disney.

• This is a great Wall Street Journal column on attempting to decipher your boss's email -- a place we've all been.

• Via The Atlantic: "My Life As A Retail Worker."

The Economist explains what doxxing is, and why it matters.

Why Aren't Doctors Drug Tested?

• One of the great personalized obituaries.

• Bloomberg News created a map of the 83 large aircraft that have disappeared since 1948.

• Putin On The Couch. America's leading Putinologists to get inside the head of the Kremlin strongman.

Why Black Women Die of Cancer.

• Kevin Lincoln on the death of the bargain bin.

• Just another day in the life of BBC News camerawoman Rachel Price.

If you are under 35, you'll have thoughts on this piece.

• Anna Hiatt examines the future of digital longform.

The Washington Post on what happens if Hillary Clinton does not run in 2016.

After writing for ESPN's website since 2008, Rick Reilly will now focus on his TV role with the network.
Elsa/Getty Images

8. In a carefully choreographed release for the best front-facing look, Rick Reilly will depart from on July 1 and concentrate solely on television. Those TV duties include features for ESPN's Monday Night Countdown and essays for SportsCenter and Sunday NFL Countdown.

"I've been writing sports for a living, non-stop, since I was 20," said Reilly, in a statement. "I figured out recently that I've published over two million words, all on sports. I'm ready to try something new."

Reilly began writing for in 2008 and his exit frees up some valuable home page real estate for Nate Silver's Five Thirty Eight site and the other digital projects coming down the Bristol pipeline. Reilly's missteps at ESPN have been chronicled far and wide and that always comes with the territory as a high-profile sports media member.

Had I one wish for Reilly, outside of his doing some long-form work at ESPN to remind readers the kind of reporter he once was, it would have been to use his massive weight when he came to ESPN in 2008 to build something entrepreneurial as Simmons did. I'm certain ESPN would have ponied up the money for a Reilly project given the network's executive editor for procurement John Walsh crowed far and wide at the coup of swiping Reilly from SI, a move as much to bolster ESPN at the time as it was to cripple SI. (The lights are still on here, thankfully.) Josh Levin wrote a piece in Slate around the thesis that Reilly became adrift in a world of brand builders such as Simmons and Nate Silver. Here's that piece, and along the same lines, read this James Wolcott piece in Vanity Fair on the branding of journalists in the social media age.

9. Those cheeky kids at Awful Announcing have constructed a March Madness-style bracket using ESPN personalities.

For fun, here's the top four seeds from yours truly and James Andrew Miller (who wrote the best-selling book on the history of ESPN) for the same concept, but including management and talent. (The most important factors for me were strength of schedule and quality wins.)

No. 1 seeds:


John Skipper (ESPN president)
Bill Simmons (Grantland boss)
Nate Silver (Five Thirty Eight czar)
John Wildhack (EVP programming and production)


John Skipper
Bill Simmons
John Wildhack
Marie Donoghue (oversees ESPN Films, Grantland and FiveThirtyEight)

No. 2 seeds:


Sean Bratches (EVP sales and marketing)
Burke Magnus (SVP programming acquisitions)
Chris Fowler (Host, CollegeGameDay and ABC's Saturday Night Football and national title game-caller)
Rob King (SVP SportsCenter and news)


John Kosner (General manager of ESPN Digital)

No. 3 seeds:


Mike Tirico (Monday Night Football play by play announcer)
Kirk Herbstreit (College football analyst)
Rece Davis (college basketball and college football host; CFB game-caller)


Connor Schell (ESPN Films executive producer)
Jay Bilas (ESPN college basketball analyst)

No. 4 seeds:


Chris Berman (Sunday NFL Countdown host)
Ed Durso (executive vice president, administration)
Jon Gruden (ESPN Monday Night Football analyst)


Chris Berman
Rosalyn Durant (Vice President of College Sports Programming)
Jamie Horowitz (vice president, original programming and production)
Colin Cowherd (ESPN Radio host)

9a. The contract of the versatile ESPN anchor Dari Nowkhah is coming up. Here's hoping ESPN management recognizes the value of those who provide professionalism every time they are on camera. I'd bet on Bristol making the right call.

10. Gerry Sandusky, the longtime radio voice of the Ravens and the son of John Sandusky, who coached under Don Shula in Baltimore and Miami, has written a book on football and fathers called Forgotten Sundays.

10a. MLB Network will broadcast live from Australia next week when the Dodgers and Diamondbacks play in the MLB Opening Series Sydney. Matt Vasgersian and John Smoltz will call the first game on Saturday from the Sydney Cricket Ground at 4:00 am ET (with a replay at 7:30 a.m. ET). The second game airs at 10:00 pm ET. The game marks the 100th anniversary of an exhibition played by the Chicago White Sox and the New York Giants at the same sports venue. The White Sox defeated the Giants, 5-4, before 10,000 fans on Jan. 3, 1914.

10b. Anchorboy: True Tales From The World of Sportscasting, a book written by Fox Sports 1 co-anchor and Canadian sex symbol Jay Onrait, hits American shelves on May 6. The first chapter focuses on NBC Sports PR being annoyed with Onrait's antics; the afterward deals (in part) with masturbation. I'm not sure there has ever been a better book by a Fox Sports 1 anchor.

10c. Scott Harves, one of ESPN's talented producers, produced an SC Featured piece on Mendota (Calif.) High School football, whose players work in agricultural fields and then practice at night. This is really worth your time.

10d. Not a good Friday night for Fox Sports 1 in Omaha, as fans watching Creighton-Xavier on Cox Cable were inadvertently switched to a Pac-12 semifinal. "Our plan was to take the state of California to the start of the Stanford-UCLA game on Fox Sports 1 if the Xavier-Creighton game ran long," said a Fox Sports 1 spokesperson. "When the switch was made, it seems that Cox Cable in Omaha inadvertently switched to the Pac-12 game as well. We don't know why or how, and we're investigating. In order to get Omaha back to the Xavier-Creighton game as quickly as possible, we had to take all those seeing Stanford-UCLA back to the remainder of Xavier-Creighton. We apologize to all those affected."

10e. Every session and match of the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships will air on ESPN, with ESPN televising the semifinals and finals, and ESPNU airing the first and second sessions, the quarterfinals and medal round. ESPN3 will have individual mat feeds throughout the entire tournament.

10f. If you had Patriots cornerback Brandon Browner as the catalyst for a sports media tussle, give yourself a pat on the back: Behold, Mike Florio vs. Ian Rapoport (and NFL Network PR).

10g. Chad Millman, a former SI staffer and the author of some enjoyable books including They Call Me Baba Booey, is now the Editor-in-Chief of both ESPN The Magazine and Alison Overholt has also been named the new Editor-in-Chief of espnW, where she will work with three of ESPN's best -- Kate Fagan, Johnette Howard and Jane McManus. Some additional in-house ESPN moves can be found here.

10h. ESPN host Michelle Beadle will attend the high school prom as the date of Jack Jablonski, a Minnesota high schooler and hockey radio host. Head to the 23-minute mark for the live prom-ask.

10i. Barcelona's victory over Manchester City last Wednesday drew 420,000 viewers, the most-watched soccer match in Fox Sports 1 history.

10j. Check out this postgame interview with Wofford basketball's Aerris Smith. It's off-the-charts awesome. Start at 1:00 mark.

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