Mike Francesa Sic'ed By Former Partner "Mad Dog" Russo On Radio Row

No, you're not seeing - or hearing - things: Mike Francesa was joined by his old on-air companion of twenty years, Chris "Mad Dog" Russo, for a colorful discussion today on Francesa's WFAN radio/YES Network television show. Francesa later returned the favor on Russo's "Mad Dog Unleashed" program on Sirius XM's "Mad Dog Radio" channel.

“Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand, good afternoon, everybody!”

That was the popular greeting on New York sports radio for two decades by Chris Russo on the “Mike And The Mad Dog” program. Of course, Russo left WFAN for a new challnge at Sirius XM Satellite Radio, in which he is now in his fourth year as host at the “Mad Dog Radio” channel. Since then, Mike Francesa had sailed solo on WFAN, with a show renamed “Mike’d Up” for about four years, and now “Mike’s On” for about four months.

With both Russo’s “Mad Dog Unleashed” show and Francesa’s “Mike’s On” on location in Indianapolis for Super Bowl Week – WFAN is the flagship station of the New York Giants, who are in this year’s big game – there were rumors early on that the two would get together and do a segment.

And so, for the first time in over two years, since both of their respective shows crossed paths at Yankee Stadium, Francesa and Russo were together again, in person (Russo phoned into Francesa’s show in 2010 after the San Francisco Giants, Russo’s favorite baseball team, won the World Series; that was the last time both have talked to each other, at least with millions listening in).

There were a few exchanges during the fifteen-minute conversation (click here to watch video in a new window) that were amusing. One started with Francesa invoking an ugly ordeal involving Russo last year: he had went to Port Charlotte, Florida for an interview with Yankees skipper Joe Girardi, but Girardi was a no-show. “Are you going to spring training this year, and then blame us for not getting into the building?”, Francesa asked Russo. “I’m getting blamed for you being in spring training… I didn’t even know you were in Florida!”

Russo responded by telling listeners (and viewers on YES Network): “It wasn’t Mike’s fault.” And he’s right. True, in the past, Francesa’s employer had issued a mandate that Russo may not broadcast his show live from Yankee Stadium or the Mets’ ballpark, CitiField. But Francesa had absolutely nothing to do with Girardi blowing off Russo in Florida last year.

The Mets also came up in conversation, as well. “You have a good job,” Russo told Francesa, “[but] you have nothing with the Mets now, you’re dead.” WFAN is also the flagship station of Mets baseball, and has been well before “Mike And The Mad Dog” went on the air (and there’s a possibility that the relationship may come to an end after the 2012 season).

“The Mets,” Francesa opined, “you feel bad for them… I wish something would happen.”

Russo also asked Francesa about Kim Jones, a WFAN contributor who just recently parted ways with YES Network as the pregame, postgame, and in-game reporter for Yankees games. “[New York Daily News sports media columnist Bob] Raissman wrote [about Jones leaving], didn’t he?”, Francesa asked Russo. “You probably gave it to him… if you don’t talk to Raissman, he’s got nothing!” Russo: “I dig that one… Funny!”

The top of the 2 PM (ET) hour was approaching, which meant Russo’s “Unleashed” show for the day would begin, so it was time for the Francesa/Russo reunion to come to an end – though Francesa would appear hours later on Russo’s radio show as soon as he finished up his WFAN/YES business.

“Dog has his show now,” Francesa told listeners/viewers, “but he don’t care, he’ll stay here.”

An animated Russo shot back: “I got some calls!”

To which Francesa, painting a picture of the demographic that calls Russo’s Sirius XM show, replied: “We’ll get one from the Eastern time zone.”

Parting in such sweet sorrow.

Ain’t that right, Mikey?

What a “good afternoon” for New York sports radio.

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NASCAR Restructures A Tangled Turner Web

NASCAR has restructured and extended their partnership with Turner Sports, who had been managing NASCAR's digital and social media platforms since 2001. NASCAR will take full editorial control of these avenues starting next year.

For over a decade, NASCAR’s collection of digital media platforms, notably NASCAR.com, as well as their social media platforms, have been controlled by Turner Sports.

Looks like things are about to take a “turn” for the better, not just for NASCAR, but for fans of the sport.

Today, NASCAR and Turner have announced “a restructuring and extension of their long-standing digital partnership,” according to a news release. Effective as early as 2013, NASCAR will take full editorial and business control of its digital and social media properties; Turner will continue managing advertising and sponsorship duties.

The new agreement also doubles as an extension of the two parties’ partnership through 2016.

SBNation’s Jeff Gluck does a great job in illustrating how much of a boon this NASCAR/Turner restructuring will be for fans; his piece can be read here.

In addition to their online work for NASCAR’s many platforms, Turner’s TNT also carries six NASCAR races annually.

Time will tell if this new deal will make Turner a “better partner” – much like the chairman of NASCAR wishes for ESPN to be.

In The Wake Of Misreporting Joe Paterno's Death, CBS Sports Blogger Blogs Off

CBS Sports blogger Adam Jacobi pays the price for his role in their website prematurely reporting Joe Paterno's death, as he had parted ways with CBS on Friday. Paterno, the longtime Penn State football coach, died last Sunday.

Last Sunday morning, Joe Paterno had died.

Last Saturday night, however, a couple of notable news sources had mistakenly buried him alive.

Onward State, the Penn State newspaper, had erroneously reported that Paterno had died at around 9 PM (ET) on January 21. CBSSports.com had picked up Onward State’s story and posted it on the front page of their website. Only after Paterno family members had began refuting reports of his death, and Onward State had retracted their report, did CBS Sports credit Onward State with the false scoop. The person who had posted the Paterno death story on CBSSports.com was Adam Jacobi.

Before January 21 had turned to January 22, the managing editor of Onward State at the time, Devon Edwards, abruptly resigned. At that point, I had speculated that somebody at CBS would be terminated over this ordeal, most likely Jacobi, a college football blogger on CBSSports.com.

Well, it appears that the other shoe has dropped. CBS did indeed fire Jacobi on Friday for his role in the misreporting of Paterno’s death on the CBS Sports website.

“CBS had to let me go for the Paterno story going out the way it did, and I understand completely,” Jacobi had tweeted on Friday afternoon. He also apologized to “everyone, most importantly the Paterno family” for how his “awesome 17 months with CBSSports.com” had come to a screeching halt.

Look – I never exhibit any glee when somebody loses their job. Because I could easily end up in the same predicament one day. (Disclosure: This blog of mine is not my proverbial “bread and butter”.) In this case, however, CBS Sports had to sever ties with at least one person who was responsible for how the Paterno death story was originally handled – and it was Jacobi. For not only was sheer sports media recklessness on display under his watch that Saturday night, but an utter disrespect for the website’s readers, as well.

Quite frankly, I’m surprised Jacobi lasted another week with CBS Sports. He should have echoed Devon Edwards and stepped down that Saturday night.

An Anom-Eli: Giants' Manning Among Notable Super Bowl XLVI Players Missing From NFL's "Top 100"

Eli Manning will be playing for his second Super Bowl victory. Not bad for a player who didn't even make the "Top 100 Players" list that came out the year before. In fairness, Tom Brady was ranked No. 1 overall on the list, which was also turned into a ten-hour event on NFL Network last year.

We are at the dawning of what is known as Super Bowl Week – the six-and-a-half-day pre-game to the Big Game, where any and all amounts of parallels are made for the teams contending in the Super Bowl, as well as their players, amid the large amounts of hype being dished out to hungry sports media scribes.

You’ve been hearing about the usual Super Bowl XLII comparisons.

You’ve been hearing about how Eli Manning could win his second Super Bowl championship, which would give him twice as many titles as his big brother, Peyton.

And you’ve been hearing about how Eli could be taking care of business at the site of this year’s Super Bowl, Lucas Oil Field – which just so happens to be the home football stadium of his big brother, Peyton (although Peyton’s renewal of that lease is currently up in the air at the moment – possibly about three months’ worth of moments – thereby creating another subplot for this year’s Super Bowl).

But because there can be no shortage of talking points for Super Bowl Week, allow me to throw another slab of red meat into the mix – by reverting to the “Top 100 Players Of 2011” list. You remember this list: It was compiled based on votes from actual NFL players, and doubled as a ten-hour event on NFL Network airing in the spring of 2011, culminating on Fourth of July Weekend – and had an NFL lockout continued, no doubt would have been repeated dozens upon dozens of times this past fall.

Of the top 100 players voted by their peers, 12 of them were quarterbacks, and of these dozen QB’s, only half of their respective teams qualified for the 2011-12 NFL playoffs.

Of course, Tom Brady was ranked number one; he was among five Patriots players (defensive tackle Vince Wilfork, 35; guard Logan Mankins, 39; wide receiver Wes Welker, 50; linebacker Jerod Mayo, 62) that made the list. And there were only three Giants players that qualified for the list, and all of them were ranked in the bottom half of the Top 100 (defensive end Justin Tuck, 60; safety Antrel Rolle, 68; guard Chris Snee, 77).

That’s not a misprint. Eli Manning, who owns more Lombardi trophies than over half of the other quarterbacks that made the Top 100 list, and is about to embark on his quest for yet another one, is absent from this list.

Granted, “The Top 100 Players Of 2011,” as its title indicates, is based on the performance of the previous season by players on the list therein: the 10-6 Giants, for which Eli Manning had a touchdown-interception radio of 31:25, failed to make the playoffs; meanwhile, quarterbacks representing four of the teams that qualified for the 2010-11 NFL playoffs – Bears, Chiefs and Seahawks, all of whom won their respective divisions, as well as the other NFL franchise in New York, the Jets – didn’t make the cut.

Heck, if you wanted any indication that this Top 100 list wasn’t based on this year, I can sum it up in two words: Donovan McNabb. Yep, when this list was compiled, he had come off of his lone season with the Washington Redskins – a season in which he had more interceptions (15) than touchdowns (14). Yet, he just cracked the list, coming in at number 100.

McNabb wouldn’t even complete 100 passes (94) in his short tenure with the Minnesota Vikings the following season.

Now, some have argued whether or not any of the canonical list of Top 10 lists and Top 100 lists and Top 500 lists compiled over the years, in fields ranging from sports to spores, render any value whatsoever.

However, to say that this “Top 100 Players Of 2011” list is meaningless, especially vis a vis the results and ensuing Super Bowl matchup of the 2011-12 season, would be an insult to the NFL players whose input made this list possible in the first place.

I mean, you can’t blame the NFL players for not foreseeing that just six of the twelve quarterbacks they decided on (Brady; Drew Brees, 9; Aaron Rodgers, 11; Ben Roethlisberger, 41; Matt Ryan, 52; Joe Flacco, 90) would advance to the playoffs the following year, let alone one of the three quarterbacks in the top ten (that would be Peyton Manning, ranked second overall) not even playing a single snap. Or that Michael Vick (number 20 on the list), Philip Rivers (26) and Tony Romo (72) would just miss the playoffs. Or that the Buccaneers, led by Josh Freeman (86), would end the 2011 campaign on a ten-game losing streak. Or that McNabb would have an even worse season that the year before.

This much is certain: Regardless of the outcome of Super Bowl XLVI, Eli Manning will be a lock to make the top 20, when the NFL players put together their “Top 100 Players Of 2012” list, should one be compiled.

You can also figure twice as many Giants players that made the list in 2011, would factor into the 2012 version.

And you can bet that when these players are asked to come up with those worthy of making the 2012 Top 100 list, and such lists for years to come, Donovan McNabb will not even cross any of their minds.

Oh, and you can also guarantee that Tim Tebow will be ranked pretty high on the list, as well.

Though, give the players credit: one of the quarterbacks playing in this year’s Super Bowl just happened to be named the number one player on the “Top 100 Players Of 2011” list. Not too shabby.

The other quarterback? Nowhere to be found.

And if said other quarterback wins Super Bowl XLVI? Well, forget about Peyton Manning and the future of the Indianapolis Colts – it’s time to flip the script on these lists.

Suzy Kolber Breaks Her Silence About Joe Namath's Infamous Advance

 

Suzy Kolber recalls being on the other end of a bizarre interview with former Jets quarterback Joe Namath. "I felt like, 'uh-oh'... Get him off the air as quickly as possible." The documentary "Namath" premieres on HBO Saturday at 8 PM ET.

December 20, 2003. A night that shall live in infamy.

The New York Jets hosted the division rival New England Patriots in a game that Chad Pennington (remember him? He’s actually a regional color analyst for the NFL on Fox these days) and “Gang Green” would lose to Tom Brady and company, 21-16.

But there would be no catch that stood out during this game. Not even a tuck rule.

For this Saturday night game, with the ESPN “Sunday Night Football” crew in tow (there was no NFL Network back in 2003), would be overshadowed not by a play during the game – but, rather, a pass.

It’s just after the two-minute warning in the second quarter when Suzy Kolber was interviewing Joe Namath, the former quarterback who led the Jets to their only Lombardi trophy thus far (much to Rex Ryan’s chagrin), and who would be honored in mere moments during a halftime ceremony recognizing the Jets’ “four-decade team”.

Kolber starts by asking Namath to comment on Pennington, the current quarterback of a Jets team who had been 6-8 coming into the game, and who had been picked off by Willie McGinest for an interception return touchdown.

Namath: “I believe everything that anyone else has watched, ugh, Chad play… impresses me, the same thing impresses them. He’s a quality, classy quarterback, who has a touch on the football. He’s not a thrower, he’s a passer…”

Kind comments from one Jets quarterback to another. But there was a mysterious presentation of those comments by Broadway Joe, that Kolber certainly recognized.

“I felt like, uh-oh, Joe is in trouble here,” Kolber disclosed in an interview in USA Today, in recalling that interesting exchange with the Hall of Famer. “Let’s get him out of it… Get him off the air as quickly as possible,” was what she was thinking as she solicited Namath’s thoughts on Chad Pennington.

But the pro that she is, Kolber tried to make some sense out of it.

“When we first started talking and he was slow and deliberate and in his speech, what was going through my head was, ‘Maybe it’s just really cold.’ And none of the executives in the truck were alarmed either because nobody said (to) stop.” In fact, it was right around the time Namath opined Pennington was a “passer” and not a “thrower” – is there a difference, really? – that “the direction in my earpiece was, ‘keep going.'”

That, she did, right after a Curtis Martin draw play.

“Joe, it’s been a tough season for Jets fans. What does it mean to you now that the team is struggling?”

To Namath’s credit, he did provide a multi-faceted answer to Kolber’s question, reminding her that Pennington had actually missed six games at the start of the season (they would go 2-4 in that stretch) and the team had the potential to be better next season.

Unfortunately, those insights played second fiddle to his Casanova act.

Namath: “I wanna kiss you. I couldn’t care less about the team struggling. What we know is we can improve. Chad Pennington, our quarterback, missed the first part of the season, and we struggled. We’re looking to next season, we’re looking to make a noise now and… I wanna kiss you!”

At that point, Kolber could have responded six ways from Sunday. (Or Saturday, considering it was a Saturday night game.) But rather than get caught up in Namath’s advances, she looks at the big picture.

“I think the way I felt about it at the time was that he’s a really good guy having a bad moment that happened to be captured on national television,” Kolber told USA Today.

Indeed, Kolber told Namath that his penchant for puckering up with her was “a huge compliment.” She then mentioned Namath would be honored at halftime, as Namath could be heard behind her exclaiming, “Yeah!”

“If we had known definitively he was in that kind of state, we wouldn’t have conducted the interview,” said Jed Drake, days after the Kolber/Namath chit-chat. Drake, mind you, was working in the ESPN production truck the night of that game – you know, when they instructed Kolber to “keep going.”

The interview led Namath to apologize to Kolber. He also admitted to being “full of too much Christmas cheer” that night; about a month later, he would publicly announce that he was battling alcoholism.

“He felt humiliated,” said Kolber. “It’s a shame he has to be remembered for that moment… I knew he wanted it to go away.”

So, why is Kolber coming clean about that infamous interview? This Saturday night, HBO will be debuting a 90-minute documentary about the quarterback, produced by HBO Sports and NFL Films. The documentary is titled, simply, “Namath.” It will cover his rise from Beaver Falls to Alabama to the AFL. No doubt, you’ll relive that Super Bowl III victory against the Baltimore Colts that Namath would “guarantee” the underdog Jets would win.

And it will also look at Namath’s life after football – including, but not limited to, a slurred interview he did on ESPN back in 2003.

Make no mistake, Namath, who is a contributor to ESPN Radio 1050/New York during football season, regrets letting that “Christmas cheer” get the best of him, and much like some of the 220 career interceptions he’s thrown (far more than his 174 career touchdowns), he wishes he could have that one back.

But is Suzy Kolber a class act? Even Joe Namath can guarantee that.

Neophyte NBC Sports Network Could Benefit From A Super Boost

NBC Sports Network, the cable channel formerly known as Versus, will present twenty hours of programming live from the site of Super Bowl XLVI next week, including the debut of the new series "Costas Tonight," hosted by Bob Costas. That could be a pivotal week for NBCSN in terms of ratings.

On January 2 of this year, timed with the conclusion of the annual NHL Winter Classic, the NBC Sports Network was officially up and running. The network originally known as Outdoor Life Network for the first dozen years of its existence, then as Versus for the next half-dozen, relaunched with the new name in order to reflect the merger between Comcast, the cable network’s original owner, and NBC.

Three weeks into the new era, it’s a given that they’re not getting gigantic ratings, despite the previous Versus households being grandfathered into their new identity. But one telling sign that NBCSN hasn’t really established itself yet is their new Facebook page: after 23 days, they have 42 “likers” – or an average of two fans per day.

It’s a start.

With extensive hockey coverage thanks to their decade-long contract with the NHL, NBCSN is the go-to network for hockey fans. In addition, they also present original programming, such as “NBC SportsTalk”, whose title possesses synergy with the family of NBC Sports websites, including the popular Pro Football Talk. They also air a weekly show about sports business, hosted by CNBC personality (and Twitter force to be reckoned with) Darren Rovell. So NBCSN is also offering an alternative to those who choose not to watch (or are sick and tired of) ESPN, or NFL Network (which may not be available in a viewer’s area), or maybe even CBS Sports Network (did anyone notice CBS College Sports quietly morphed into their new name about nine months before NBC’s identical move?).

The future is promising for NBCSN, but like all cable networks in their infancy, they could use a shot in the arm.

And they might get it – in the form of Super Bowl XLVI.

No, the “big game” will be on NBC. But the opportunity to raise awareness of NBC Sports Network lies in Indianapolis, the site of this year’s Super Bowl.

NBC released their Super Bowl programming schedule for next week. You can see that NBC is deploying all of their toys (i.e. broadcasting properties) as they see fit, even if the networks don’t traditionally specialize in football programming: David Feherty from The Golf Channel will host an edition of his “Feherty Live” show from Indianapolis. There will also be a dozen hours of programming on The Weather Channel. But NBC Sports Network alone accounts for roughly one-third of the 60+ Super Bowl-themed hours of programming among the NBC family of networks. (Nothing on Bravo or SyFy this year, I’m afraid.)

Think about it, though: If you take away the actual Super Bowl and its six-hour pregame on February 5, NBC Sports Network will be carrying more Super Bowl-devoted programming than NBC itself. That’s quite a responsibility for a channel that technically didn’t even appear on televisions for an entire month yet.

But that’s the game plan for a young network that’s trying to raise awareness of its existence among the hundreds of other cable networks on your lineup.

NBCSN’s Super Bowl programming consists of their daily “NBC SportsTalk” show, which (I am assuming) will emanate from the “radio row” area that is always buzzing during “Super Bowl Week”. Thursday’s edition will actually be extended one hour, leading into a brand new NBCSN program, “Costas Tonight,” hosted by the one and only Bob Costas, debuting at 8 PM ET.

Right there, that’s two factors that hopefully should attract eyeballs to NBC Sports Network: big name (Costas) plus big game (or at least, the backdrop).

And if the twenty-hour Super Bowl extravaganza doesn’t quite work out as planned for NBCSN, there’s still more months left in the year. Remember, it’s 2012 – and election years double as Summer Olympics years. The good thing about NBC having NBCSN at its disposal is that they can actually program some of the many competitions from London on there without hesitation. Compare that to the 2008 Olympic Games from Beijing, which not only aired over NBC, but USA Network, CNBC, MSNBC, and Oxygen. Plus the aforementioned Bravo and SyFy.

True, just months before the 2008 Olympics, the Universal Sports network was created, but it was available mostly as a subchannel for broadcast channels’ signals. Interestingly, NBC decided that it would no longer be delivered in a broadcast television format, being available exclusively on cable as of January 2 – the same day of the NBC Sports Network rebranding. Lest anyone thinks Universal Sports was absorbed by NBCSN; it still exists, and will continue to air global-oriented sports programming… maybe even some of the London Olympics (they have been carrying Olympics-qualifying events).

But back to NBCSN. In addition to the London Olympics, they will also air MLS matches. And of course, they’ll be carrying NHL playoff games, just as they had been when they were known as Versus.

2012 shows a lot of potential for NBC Sports Network.

The potential to get off to a Super start.

Heck, reaching the 50-fan plateau on Facebook would be a great start.

Reports Of Joe Paterno's Death Are Greatly Exaggerated: CBS Commits Two Cardinal Journalism Sins In One Night

CBS Sports reported on their website that former Penn State coach Joe Paterno had died. Only when word started to spread that Paterno was still alive did CBS conveniently decide to attribute their source of the false report, Penn State's campus newspaper.

Last November, CBS was promoting an “exclusive” interview with Penn State assistant coach Mike McQueary. Note that it was less than 24 hours after NBC aired an exclusive interview of their own with another assistant coach from the Penn State football program, Jerry Sandusky. Also note that November is what is known in the television industry as a “sweeps” month – where networks and stations usually do anything and everything for eyeballs.

The end result of CBS’ “exclusive” Mike McQueary interview is that it lasted about as long as it took for you to read the previous paragraph. That’s right, an interview that was heavily promoted and highly publicized for most of the day lasted a whopping 25 seconds.

One source summed up the ordeal in their headline perfectly: “CBS Punks Viewers with McQueary Clip.”

On Saturday night, there was another development with regards to Penn State and the child sex abuse scandal that has been associated with them in recent months. This time, however, CBS punked folks on the Internet.

As the 8 PM (Eastern time) hour was winding down, CBSSports.com posted a story with the headline, “Former Penn State coach Joe Paterno dies at 85.” The lead paragraph read as follows: “Joe Paterno, the man who for decades was synonymous with Penn State football and was known by the college football world as just “JoePa”, has died. Paterno, 85, had been receiving chemotherapy as part of his treatment for lung cancer, and complications from that treatment claimed the longtime Penn State coach’s life on Saturday.”

Just ten minutes after CBSSports.com posted the story, this tweet comes in from Mark Viera of The New York Times: “Dan McGinn, the Paterno family spokesman… on reports about Joe Paterno’s death: “Absolutely not true.”

CBS had to act – and fast. They didn’t want blood on their hands from a man who wasn’t dead yet.

So at 9:13 PM, the story was updated. The headline now read, “Report: Former PSU coach Joe Paterno dies at 85,” and the leading paragraph now read something like this: “Joe Paterno, the man who for decades was synonymous with Penn State football and was known by the college football world as just “JoePa”, has died, according to Penn State student website Onward State. Onward State is reporting that the Penn State players were notified of Paterno’s passing via email. Paterno, 85, had been receiving chemotherapy as part of his treatment for lung cancer. However, Paterno family spokesperson Dan McGinn told a New York Times reporter that the report is “absolutely not true.”

So a source close to Joe Paterno says his death is “absolutely not true,” yet the story on CBSSports.com still reads that he has indeed died – but according to a “report” from another source. It’s like you’re watching that part of the Chargers/Broncos game on CBS where the Chargers kicker appears to be urinating, only to be greeted by Mark McEwen to tell you that it’s raining.

But the worst was yet to come for CBS: ten minutes later, two people very close to Joe Paterno – in the form of his sons, Jay and Scott – would rush to Twitter to refute CBS’ report. And eventually, “CBS Sports” would be trending worldwide on Twitter – but for all the wrong reasons.

9:29 PM. New CBSSports.com headline: “Reports of Joe Paterno’s death refuted by family.” New opening paragraph: “Penn State student website Onward State has reported that Penn State players were notified of longtime head coach Joe Paterno’s passing via email, and CBSSports.com went on this report. Paterno, 85, had been receiving chemotherapy as part of his treatment for lung cancer. However, Paterno family spokesperson Dan McGinn told a New York Times reporter that the report of Paterno’s demise is “absolutely not true,” and Jay Paterno tweeted that his father “continues to fight.”

I guess the Paterno family spokesperson’s word isn’t good enough for CBS, huh? It had to take tweets from Paterno’s own sons for CBS to yank the “Joe Paterno Dies” headline from their website.

And only when reports – starting with said Paterno family spokesperson – started to surface that Paterno was not dead, CBS decided then and only then was the right time to credit the source that they had got the tip from: Onward State, Penn State’s campus newspaper.

You can’t have it both ways, CBS.

Not only was CBS wrong by initially reporting the story without crediting Onward State, but they were way wrong in nonchalantly passing on the credit to them when the big story that CBS broke a half-hour earlier was not accurate.

And you can imagine what happened next: The hashtag #CBSSportsSays had now trended nationally, and folks were now starting to mock CBS’ epic journalism fail in the comments section of their own story, such as this nod to Monty Python from “midgetsarefunny”: “Bring out your dead! (Clank) Bring out your dead! Joe’s not dead yet.

Aside from the expected CBS “report” tweets, actual journalists were giving CBS a type-lashing on Twitter. “When reporting that someone has died, you cannot be “confident” your report is correct. You have to be sure your report is correct,” wrote Yahoo’s Pat Forde. “These kind of stories require the utmost caution… CBS owes the Paterno family a prominent apology. You cannot get that wrong.” (Update: They did post an apology to the Paterno family.) And Nashville-based sports radio host Clay Travis summed it up best: “Major egg on face for CBS. Wrong report. Ouch.”

And what about the source of that “wrong report,” Onward State? The turn of events confounded managing editor Devon Edwards so much that he abruptly resigned. “I take full responsibility for the events that transpired tonight, and for the black mark upon the organization that I have caused,” he wrote in a missive posted on Onward State’s Facebook page. “I never, in a million years, would have thought that Onward State would be cited by the national media, and today, I sincerely wish it never had been.”

Here’s a tip, Mr. Edwards: When you’re going to report the death of a person that has only been idolized by your school, it might be a good idea to wait until multiple sources confirm it. That way, you won’t be vilified when the story has to end up being retracted.

And as it turns out, look what happened – you fooled CBS enough to buy into your story and roll with it. And someone at CBS is probably going to follow you out the proverbial door.

That someone might be the person whose byline is attached to the untrue Paterno story: Adam Jacobi, the senior college football blogger for CBSSports.com. His Twitter bio reads, “Striving for equality and perfect cromulence.”

“Cromulence” is a word that means legitimate, authentic, and acceptable.

It was also a word created in a 1996 episode of “The Simpsons.”

Adam Jacobi? Devon Edwards. Devon Edwards? Adam Jacobi. Nice to see you two get acquainted. Now, why don’t you two have a seat next to Jayson Blair?

No matter how big your hatred is for ESPN, you have to respect them for not falsely reporting Paterno’s death. (Even though they have a vast history of reporting stories broken by other sources and not attributing credit to them – the other major journalism no-no committed by CBS on Saturday night.) It probably worked out in ESPN’s favor by not reporting any such “breaking news.”

And what about CNN and Fox News? Forget it: Saturday night was South Carolina Republican primary results night. When they weren’t busy carrying live speeches of the losing candidates, they were busy conducting interviews with the losing candidates that had just given speeches moments earlier, or Sarah Palin. You couldn’t even get a sniff of a chyron with a mere mention of the name “Paterno” on the air if you tried. (Though, to be fair, Bret Baier and Anderson Cooper, who were on the air with their respective networks that night, did make comments about Paterno’s reported passing on their personal Twitter accounts at the time.) It’s clear that the cable news networks’ bread is buttered in politics. So they probably wouldn’t have reported Paterno’s death even if it was ultimately confirmed. (CNN’s usual bottom-of-the-screen news ticker was replaced by a South Carolina primary poll and delegate results chart, at one point including a small live camera shot of the campaign headquarters of primary winner Newt Gingrich.)

You’ll probably be hearing this pun a few dozen times or so throughout the day, given their logo, but I’ll go ahead and say it: CBS has given journalism a black eye.

A black eye that no snowglobe can fix.

Right, Armen Keteyian?