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Guest Columns

Swimming faces troubled waters

ATLANTA — Haley Anderson has been through this before. In the lead-up to the Rio Olympics, all the talk about open water swimming focused on the conditions rather than the competition. Now, it’s happening again with the Tokyo Games less than a year away. This time, there is concern ...

In broadcast world, some thanks

We’re just a three days removed from Thanksgiving, and there are many reasons to be thankful in regard to sports media and television. Here are a few atop my list: David Feherty: The golf analyst and TV personality conducts the best sports interview program on television. We’re getting to ...

Best atmosphere? Here’s nod to Tide

I have been to sporting events all over the USA, from sea to shining sea, and none is more awesome than an on-campus rivalry football game. Super Bowls, World Series, NBA Finals, Stanley Cups, bowl games and NCAA Final Fours are full of excitement, but they can’t top the energy of ...

(More) ESPN Radio changes on way

For a decade and a half, ESPN Radio’s national morning drive sports-talk show was a testament to consistency and familiarity. Now it could be facing more change. Led by longtime hosts Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic, Mike and Mike in the Morning earned cultural relevance and respect from ...

SFU softball coach has passport ready

LORETTO — Saint Francis assistant softball coach Hailey Breakwell has been a nomad in her softball career. Growing up in the fertile Napa Valley of California, a garden of grapes and softball players, Breakwell played shortstop at Idaho State, where she won Big Sky player of the year. ...

PSU gets Lions’ share of exposure

It’s been a good few weeks for Penn State football — arguably the best midseason publicity run in program history. It might not rival bowl performances and national championships, but in terms of consistently good news and high visibility opportunities, it’s hard to top three ...

NBA-China a lose-lose situation

Tim Dahlberg The Associated Press If the NBA really wanted to make a statement it should have never issued a statement, much less two. No need to complicate things when two team owners had already genuflected to the irate citizens of China. Or when James Harden took it upon himself to ...

No easy fix to NFL’s instant replay

Steelers fans saw something during last week’s Monday Night Football broadcast as their team played the Bengals that they thought never see — a seemingly sure-fire replay challenge victory for coach Mike Tomlin. It’s been two-plus years since Tomlin has tossed a red challenge flag and ...

Rubbing elbows with Bill Bidwill

It was Oct. 1963 and I had just finished my sixth year on active duty with the Navy. I decided to leave the service and try to get hired for some job in professional sports (PR, traveling secretary, gofer, anything). I wrote letters to every major league baseball, football and basketball team ...

New rule hits home in Steeler game

It’s of little consolation to Steelers fans, but their team played a role in NFL broadcast and officiating history last week. With a replay challenge of a non-call that led to a pass interference penalty being called, the Seahawks-Steelers game was the first in which the NFL’s rule to ...

Beating Pats may be wishful thinking

By Ira Kaufman For the Mirror Last Sunday I went to Gillette Stadium to see if Ben Roethlisberger, in the twilight of his career, could finally beat the GOAT, Tom Brady. Nearly two decades ago, the underdog New England Patriots (with Drew Bledsoe replacing an injured Tom Brady) upset the ...

NFL’s ratings bonanza set to begin

The return of regular season NFL football means good things for many people, among them bettors, diehard fans, fantasy football players and, especially, TV programmers. It might be weeks until network series like “This is Us,” “9-1-1” or “Modern Family” return, but the fall TV ...

Whose football dreams will come true?

In theory, opening week of the NFL and college football season brims with the promise of championships, team milestones, and more wins than losses for every team. The reality is that the favorites in the preseason often fulfill their aspirations for postseason and bowl game appearances, ...

Baseball must improve on its safety

ATLANTA — There’s always a surge of excitement when a foul ball comes your way, mixed with a sense of dread. It’s a thrilling souvenir to take home from the ballpark. Yet too many fans have been left bloody and maimed by these projectiles hurtling into the stands. One person even ...

Little League coverage hits home run

After 10 days of on-field action and an abundance of made-for-TV fun, the Little League World Series concludes this afternoon with the championship game from Williamsport airing at 3 p.m. on ABC. As it has for years, ESPN packages the event as a slice of Americana, full of camaraderie, ...

An honor to play ‘for something bigger’

I will never forget the phone call I made to John Boyer the first week of March in 2014. That phone call was to offer him the first spot on the Sideline Cancer basketball team. When he picked up the phone, I told him that I wanted him to play in honor of the Griffith Family Foundation of ...

Boxing pays price for chasing money

There’s nothing new about those who make their living in sports chasing every dollar they can. NFL owners do it every time they threaten to devastate a city by moving a team to greener pastures. Baseball does it by signing lucrative broadcast agreement that make it more expensive — and ...

Marketing displaces sports’ traditions

Few things can evoke expressions of nostalgia and sentimentality like holidays, family milestones and trips to professional sporting events. There was a time not that long ago when even a casual sports fan could recite the name of the home stadium, ballpark or arena for all or most of the ...

To be top dog, Ga. needs to roll Tide

Paul Newberry The Associated Press ATHENS, Ga. — If you’re looking for a terser-than-usual response from Kirby Smart, just bring up how the last two seasons ended. The Georgia coach will shoot you a steely eyed glare that falls somewhere between disgust and disdain, then respond with ...

Sports writer helped instill a calling

Bellwood native authored long career We all mourn when a family member or good friend dies. But I can’t help standing up, yelling the “We Are — Penn State” cheer and heartedly singing “Taking Me Out to the Ballgame” for Bill Summers, one of my first sports writing gurus. ...