Dave Briggs Totally Crossed Out On NBC Sports Network's "The Crossover"

 

 

 

 

 

 

Michelle Beadle will be the primary host of NBC Sports Network's "The Crossover" when new episodes resume on Monday, May 20. Dave Briggs will reportedly remain with NBC.

Michelle Beadle will be the primary host of NBC Sports Network’s “The Crossover” when new episodes resume on Monday, May 20. Dave Briggs will reportedly remain with NBC.

When it debuted the week prior to Super Bowl XLVII, “The Crossover” showed promise as a staple on NBC Sports Network. Moreso due to the presence of NBC’s big acquisition, Michelle Beadle, on the program.

Her pairing with Dave Briggs, a Boston sports television veteran who had most recently been on Fox News Channel’s “Fox and Friends,” had to spark some chemistry in order for it to work.

In fact, upon the show’s launch, its executive producer, Sam Flood, had this to say about the show’s description: “It’s about personality. It’s about people you want to spend time with. It’s the people you want to be at the bar and hang out with, and these are the two people you want to do that with.”

After less than four months, it has become clear that NBC Sports Network does not want to spend time with Dave Briggs anymore.

When the show returns from a scheduled hiatus this week, it will possess three things: “New set, new cast, better vibe.”

Translation: “The Crossover” will now be hosted solely by Beadle, with a rotation of co-hosts. Briggs, meanwhile, will still remain with NBC and is already set to embark on a new venture with the company. (Given his past on Fox News, could it be MSNBC?)

And I’m guessing it’ll cost a fraction of what ESPN laid down for their new “SportsCenter” studio, for NBCSN to invest in the “new set” and “better vibe” for “The Crossover.”

The 6 PM ET time slot in which the show airs is crowded real estate among sports-oriented cable networks. You’ve already got the early evening edition of “SportsCenter” on ESPN, Jim Rome’s broadcast on CBS Sports Network, and starting this August, the brand new Fox Sports 1’s “Football Live,” which will have a rotation of co-hosts – kinda like “Crossover” will, with Beadle being the constant.

It goes without saying that Erin Andrews will likely be appearing on “Football Live” several times a week.

I guess NBC is sharpening up its claws in the battle of the former ESPN personalities catfight with FS1.

So will Dave Briggs be missed? If this sampling of Twitter reaction during the premiere week of “The Crossover” is any indication, probably not.

ESPN Might Restore Faith On "Monday Night Football" (Hill, That Is)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fear not, football fans: Faith Hill, legs and all, may once again be gracing TV screens before football games - perhaps on ESPN, which revolutionized the form with Hank Williams, Jr. on "Monday Night Football."

Fear not, football fans: Faith Hill, legs and all, may once again be gracing TV screens before football games – perhaps on ESPN, which revolutionized the form with Hank Williams, Jr. on “Monday Night Football.”

Last month, Faith Hill announced a “difficult decision” to depart as the artist performing prior to “Sunday Night Football” on NBC for six seasons.

On Tuesday, NBC announced that another country recording artist, Carrie Underwood, would replace Hill on the broadcasts starting with the season kickoff game on September 5.

I would not be surprised if this news did not sit well with Faith Hill. This video from a country music award show tells you all you need to know:

Anyway, I have a gut feeling that Faith will eventually be back in the game before long.

Because there are two other nationally televised weekly football broadcasts that could definitely use her services as an upgrade.

And who are ESPN and NFL Network to say no to the woman who belted out a loose version of a Joan Jett song customized for the opponents of that night’s game on the top-rated show in primetime?

Last year, in conjunction with “Thursday Night Football” expanding from eight games per season to thirteen, NFLN brought in Cee Lo Green to perform a theme song to the beat of The Ramones’ “Blitzkrieg Bop.” As far as we know, the deal is for at least one season.

But with Faith Hill being a free agent, NFLN could very well tell Cee Lo, “forget you” – or something similar, anyway.

Then, there’s ESPN, whose “Monday Night Football” was for years the model for this device, with Hank Williams, Jr. being known for asking that burning question to viewers, “Are you ready for some football?” The song had been performed before “MNF” starting in 1989 on its original network, ABC, carrying over to ESPN in 2006, until he decided to compare President Obama to Adolf Hitler on the morning of October 3, 2011 – which happened to be a Monday; his intro was yanked from that night’s Buccaneers/Colts game. ESPN would later drop the singer from their “MNF” broadcasts altogether. Since then, they’ve been leaning on production pieces (similar to the “Journey” series on Fox’s NFL pregame show) and comedy bits airing before the game.

It’s clear that they can’t go this route forever; the current period of pregame pieces should act as a buffer between Hank Jr.’s tenure on “MNF” and his eventual replacement; further, there would be less backlash to let time subside before deciding on a new “MNF” artist, as opposed to just dragging a singer off the street to replace Hank Jr. on the October 10, 2011 broadcast. Certainly, Hank Jr., with his updated version of “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight” being crooned into living rooms and bars for over two decades, has etched himself into football lore, and ESPN respects that.

And now that Bocephus is pretty much out of the football picture (his recent doubling down on Obama will all but cement that), it’s easier for ESPN to move on to a new artist for the “Monday Night Football” intro.

Could you imagine the innovator of the primetime football game open standing pat with generic intros, while the weekly primetime NFL broadcasts on NBC and NFL Network have artists belting one out?

I say, ESPN shouldn’t stand for being upstaged by the likes of Cee Lo Green. And by hiring Faith Hill to continue her career as an NFL kickoff singer, that would mean NFL Network will have to stand for, well, Cee Lo Green.

Of course, this is all contingent on whether or not Faith Hill’s schedule can accommodate getting back into the grind of recording a song for several weeks. She’d likely need to learn a new one, no doubt. She could also decide to take a year or two off from the NFL.

But something tells me the selection of Carrie Underwood to replace her on NBC is going to speed up this process rather quickly.

Are you ready for some… catfight?

2013 NFL Schedule: The Primetime Games: Broncos, Falcons, 49ers, Giants, Patriots, Redskins Have Five Games Each

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins will play five games in primetime this season, starting with the 2013 opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 9 on ESPN.

Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins will play five games in primetime this season, starting with the 2013 opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 9 on ESPN.

Here is the list of all the primetime games scheduled for the 2013 NFL season.

Commentary to follow… Actually, I’ll get the back-patting out of the way early: I called the Ravens/Broncos opener on September 5, and I called the Washington Redskins getting five primetime games this season, up from just one last year.

And here are the games:

Thursday, September 5 – Baltimore Ravens @ Denver Broncos – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Sunday, September 8 – New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 9 – Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington Redskins – 7:10 PM ET – ESPN

Monday, September 9 –  Houston Texans @ San Diego Chargers – 10:20 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, September 12 – New York Jets @ New England Patriots – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, September 15 – San Francisco 49ers @ Seattle Seahawks – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 16 – Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, September 19 – Kansas City Chiefs @ Philadelphia Eagles – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, September 22 – Chicago Bears @ Pittsburgh Steelers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 23 – Oakland Raiders @ Denver Broncos – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, September 26 – San Francisco 49ers @ St. Louis Rams – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, September 29 – New England Patriots @ Atlanta Falcoms – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 30 – Miami Dolphins @ New Orleans Saints – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 3 – Buffalo Bills @ Cleveland Browns – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 6 – Houston Texans @ San Francisco 49ers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 7 – New York Jets @ Atlanta Falcons – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 10 – New York Giants @ Chicago Bears – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 13 – Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 14 – Indianapolis Colts @ San Diego Chargers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 17 – Seattle Seahawks @ Arizona Cardinals – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 20 – Denver Broncos @ Indianapolis Colts – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 21 – Minnesota Vikings @ New York Giants – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 24 – Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 27 – Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 28 – Seattle Seahawks @ St. Louis Rams – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 31 – Cincinnati Bengals @ Miami Dolphins – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 3 – Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 4 – Chicago Bears @ Green Bay Packers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 7 – Washington Redskins @ Minnesota Vikings – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 10 – Dallas Cowboys @ New Orleans Saints – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 11 – Miami Dolphins @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 14 –Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee Titans – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 17 – Green Bay Packers @ New York Giants – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 18 – New England Patriots @ Carolina Panthers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 21 – New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta Falcons – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 24 – Denver Broncos @ New England Patriots – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 25 – San Francisco 49ers @ Washington Redskins – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 28 (Thanksgiving) – Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens – 8:20 PM ET – NBC

Sunday, December 1 – New York Giants @ Washington Redskins – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 2 – New Orleans Saints @ Seattle Seahawks – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, December 5 – Houston Texans @ Jacksonville Jaguars – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, December 8 – Atlanta Falcons @ Green Bay Packers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 9 – Dallas Cowboys @ Chicago Bears – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, December 12 – San Diego Chargers @ Denver Broncos – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, December 15 – Cincinnati Bengals @ Pittsburgh Steelers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 16 – Baltimore Ravens @ Detroit Lions – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Sunday, December 22 – New England Patriots @ Baltimore Ravens – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 23 – Atlanta Falcons @ San Francisco 49ers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Sunday, December 29 – [Teams to be determined following Week 16] – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

TEAMS WITH FIVE PRIMETIME GAMES: Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, New England Patriots, New York Giants, San Francisco 49ers, Washington Redskins.

TEAMS WITH FOUR PRIMETIME GAMES: Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks.

TEAMS WITH THREE PRIMETIME GAMES: Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, San Diego Chargers.

TEAMS WITH TWO PRIMETIME GAMES: Carolina Panthers, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, St. Louis Rams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

TEAMS WITH ONE PRIMETIME GAME: Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Tennessee Titans.

———————————————————————————————————————-

OBSERVATIONS: So, let me get this straight: The Baltimore Ravens win the Super Bowl, yet the runner-up gets one more primetime game in the ensuing season than the World Champions? Explain that to me.

Also, explain to me how the NFL didn’t greenlight the Denver Broncos going to Dallas on Thanksgiving Day. This was a given when the AFC opponents for the Cowboys were released at the top of the year. Or so I thought. Now, it’s going to be a chance to pass out with tryptophan in between another Packers/Lions matinee and the Ravens hosting another Thanksgiving night game, this time against the division rival Pittsburgh Steelers.

I wonder if Peyton Manning not getting a Thanksgiving date with Tony Romo was a byproduct of the Broncos actually hosting the NFL kickoff game.

Predictably, the Eagles/Chiefs game with Andy Reid bringing a new squad into Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia is an NFL Network Thursday night affair.

Predictably, that’s the Chiefs’ lone primetime game. The Jaguars’ sole primetime tilt in 2013 is also on NFLN, as was the case last year. Ditto for the Browns and the Bills, who actually play each other on an NFLN game; the Bills and the Dolphins killed two birds with one Thursday night primetime stone last season.

Thr Dolphins improve from one primetime game last year to three this year. Same with the Vikings. The Colts go from one primetime game last season to four this season. And I’ve already told you about the Redskins’ maxing out at five games, up from one last year.

Further proof NBC loves the NFC East: The Cowboys and Giants open the “Sunday Night Football” 2013 campaign. The Cowboys will appear on “SNF” three times this year, as will the Giants. Two of the Redskins’ five night contests are on NBC; two of them will air on ESPN. Eagles? Nowhere to be found on NBC’s initial schedule. Of course, the latter half of the season allows flex scheduling, so if the Eagles are actually a good team, they’ll likely see more than just the two games (down from five last year() they’ve been scheduled this year. In other words: the Cowboys/Eagles game that was not flexed out late last season might be the last time in awhile you’ll hear Al Michaels working an Eagles game.

And for the first time in recent memory, there are no Saturday games scheduled. The Bay City Rollers will now have to find alternate ways to be preoccupied this year.

Mike Lupica On NBC News During Boston Marathon Tragedy: A Tragic Decision?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Incensed viewers took to Twitter to complain about NBC News using the insight of New York-based sports writer Mike Lupica during their coverage of the Boston Marathon explosion.

Incensed viewers took to Twitter to complain about NBC News using the insight of New York-based sports writer Mike Lupica during their coverage of the Boston Marathon explosion.

There’s really no way – nor is there ever an intent – to make light of the events that unfolded at the end of the Boston Marathon.

Two explosions went off near the finish line, right before 3 PM local time. Many are injured, with a few casualties, including an 8-year-old child.

Naturally, news organizations, locally as well as nationally, are reaching out to anyone for comment on this horrific tragedy.

Apparently, NBC News decided to reach out, not once, but twice, to New York Daily News sports columnist and ESPN Radio 98.7/New York host Mike Lupica.

And for some reason, viewers do not think it makes sense.

For what it’s worth, he did have a gripping viewpoint: “To see people running away from the finish line of the Boston Marathon is one of the most chilling things I’ve ever seen.”

But was Lupica, whose radio show airs from 12 Noon to 1 PM weekdays, actually at the marathon? That is likely at the center of people’s reactions on Twitter as to why NBC News would bring on a New York-based sports columnist and author on the air.

Here’s the first wave of tweets at around 4:40 PM ET:

And the next round of react when Lupica reappears on NBC News after 7 PM ET:

Bob Costas Defends "Gun Culture" Commentary On HBO, But Admits: "I Could Have Done This More Effectively" (Video, Transcript)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bob Costas appeared on HBO's "Real Time With Bill Maher" and discussed his "gun culture" comments made during a "Sunday Night Football" broadcast in December.

Bob Costas appeared on HBO’s “Real Time With Bill Maher” and discussed his “gun culture” comments made during a “Sunday Night Football” broadcast in December.

It’s been four months since the Jovan Belcher murder/suicide.

And, likewise, how sports media responded to the event in the 48 hours that followed, locally (in Kansas City) and nationally.

But what really drew a lot of buzz was Bob Costas’ commentary at halftime of the “Sunday Night Football” game that weekend.

On Friday, Costas was among the guests on HBO’s “Real Time With Bill Maher.” Costas, who himself was an HBO personality during the previous decade, said that while he would not take back his thoughts about gun control on the night of December 2 on NBC, he would have slightly altered how he said them.

“I could have done this more effectively, in retrospect,” Costas acknowledged. “I had a short period of time, and I tried to shoehorn a single aspect of it in.”

The aspect that he spoke of, of course, was the “gun culture,” whereas even if there was legal gun ownership in circles, “you still have the attitudes that lead to tragedy.”

On the same broadcast, Costas also opined on “the gun absolutists” and the likely possibility of their organizing an “ad hoc militia” against the government.

Video below (language warning; Maher refers to the Second Amendment as “bulls–t”); transcript follows.

BOB COSTAS: “You know, I think a lot of us who are in favor of common sense gun control have to concede that common sense gun control is not the only aspect of it. Obviously, mental health is an aspect of it. You’re going to have to have enforcement. If you have background checks, you’re going to have to have better enforcement. You’re going to have to have mandatory sentences for those who not only commit crimes with guns, but who carry guns illegally.

“There’s a whole array of things. It’s not only about guns. But to hear the NRA tell it, it’s about everything but guns.

“At halftime of a game the day after Jovan Belcher of the Kansas City Chiefs murdered his fiancee and then committed suicide, um, and I could have done this more effectively, in retrospect, because I had a short period of time, and I tried to shoehorn a single aspect of it in; I didn’t believe it was the only aspect… I talked about a “gun culture” in sports, which, even if you had common sense gun control, and all these guns were legally obtained, you still have the attitudes that lead to tragedy.”

BILL MAHER: “I’m sorry… I’m so sorry, but this is the problem with the gun debate, is that it’s a constant center right debate. There’s no left in this debate. Everyone on the left is so afraid to say what should be said, which is the Second Amendment is bullshit.”

COSTAS: “But all these paranoid types who think that there’s gonna come a day when the government is just gonna go too far for them, and as true patriots, they’re going to have to organize some sort of ad hoc militia, here’s my question: Who is the Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee of this militia? How do they coalesce? Who do they decide who to shoot? Who do we trust?

“The gun absolutists try to cloak all of their arguments in high-minded constitutional principle, and there is a constitutional point to be made. But we have to remind ourselves: we’re talking about the gun lobby. Just like there’s a pharmaceutical lobby, there’s a food and beverage lobby, there’s a tobacco lobby. Part of what they’re trying to do is protect the ability of the people they represent, to sell somebody a Bushmaster.

“What I was trying to say with the gun culture thing at halftime of the football game: Even if you had every bit of legislation, you’d still have these attitudes toward guns that lead to bad outcomes.”

Tony Romo's New Extension Does Not Sit Well With Donovan McNabb (Audio)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Donovan McNabb took issue with Tony Romo's new contract extension, despite winning one playoff game with the Dallas Cowboys.

Donovan McNabb took issue with Tony Romo’s new contract extension, despite winning one playoff game with the Dallas Cowboys.

As counterparts on teams in the NFC East division, Donovan McNabb and Tony Romo always duked it out against each other on the field.

And ever since the Philadelphia Eagles traded McNabb away three Easters ago, all he’s done is make himself look worse on a couple of other teams – including another NFC East team, the Washington Redskins.

Meanwhile, Romo is still the quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys, and thanks to a new deal reached late this afternoon, it will remain that way until at least the end of the current decade. Both parties agreed to a six-year extension, at $108 million, with just over half of the money – $55 million – guaranteed.

This definitely ticked off now-NFL Network analyst McNabb, who was so flustered, he messed up the details in his initial tweet, which was retweeted 10,000 times within an hour.

By the way, Romo’s lone playoff win – yeah, it came against the Eagles, with McNabb at quarterback. Yikes.

You know who thinks the Cowboys and Romo should have waited a few more days? NBC Sports Radio. Could you imagine if this deal went down right in the middle of the debut of his new afternoon drive show with Mark Malone, “Under Center”? Instead of dispensing his vitriol at Romo via Twitter, he would have voiced his displeasure on the air on NBCSR, in a sound byte that would have certainly generated some buzz for the new network, if not the neophyte afternoon drive show.

In the meantime, I’m sure McNabb, owner of nine playoff victories with the Eagles in his NFL career, will have something to say about Romo’s extension on tonight’s edition of “NFL Total Access” on NFL Network; he’s been appearing on the program all week.

Or will he save it for his new radio platform on Monday?

And will his new radio show last on NBC Sports Radio as long as that 5-year, $78 million deal McNabb signed with the Redskins, just weeks before he was eventually benched and later cut by the club?

And the show debuts on April Fool’s Day, of all days? You got to be kidding me.

UPDATE: McNabb conveniently was a guest on Erik Kuselias’ final evening show until he inherits morning drive next week. According to No. 5, he thought the Cowboys should have invested more money in the players around Romo, as opposed to Romo himself. Click here to listen.