Chicago is the most insane sports city in the world. And it’s a crazy football town. NFL
only though. This is a Bears
town first and foremost. Even the Bulls
take a backseat to them. However, in college football
, it's not as passionate. Who is the college football team of Chicago?
Well, you can answer that question with three different answers and they’d all be right. You could say
a.) Notre Dame
maybe, sort of.
c.) a combination of four teams.
Obviously, geography has a lot to do with it. There just isn’t a team here within the city limits; you have to drive to reach all of the four candidates. So let’s examine the strengths and weaknesses for each of the four options who you could consider to be Chicago’s college football team.
I ranked them by mileage and driving time from City Front Plaza on Michigan
That’s where all the big media corporations in this city are headquartered, so we’ll use that as “point A.”...
It’s quite common for football players to put their jersey numbers in their email handles, login IDs etc. All athletes do this, but it seems football players do so on a much grander scale. Maybe that’s because football is the most popular sport, so I notice it there more. Or maybe it’s because the numbers are much more dominant within the jersey design in football than any other sport. We remember the number more in football.
All I know is I do the same thing with my #5 and I was just a lowly 9th string defensive back/wide receiver on a 2-7 high school football team. Who was 5’10″ 178 and ran a 5.1 40-yard-dash. But hey, I got to wear navy blue and burnt orange just like the Illini
and the Bears
And the Luniz “I got 5 on it”
was the song of the summer during my senior year of 1995! And as that song is in fact a glorification of a narcotics deal, it's the perfect theme song for this list post about scandal.
Anyways, I follow the careers of NFL
and college football
players who wear #5 more closely; for obvious reasons. I’ve noticed that #5s have some major drama going on. Some are just plain jerks and bad guys; others are very dumb. And still others are good, opinionated guys who just inflame the passions of unfair media men. Joe Flacco is the exception. I can’t think of another very high profile #5 who has avoided controversy like the Ravens QB. And this list has a lot of local flair: two Chicagoland products, two Illini and three from Notre Dame.
Maybe you can make lists like these for guys wearing other jersey numbers too? If you put your mind to it. Or maybe there is something just inherently snake-bitten about the #5...
Pro Football Weekly may have folded, but Hub Arkush is still going strong. You can hear him on 670 The Score, and he’s going to be doing some work now for the Chicago Sun-Times. By the way, I still never bought that excuse about the NFL lockout being the cause of PFW’s demise. The lockout cost us the Hall of Fame preseason exhibition, OTAs and mini-camp. It terminated one preseason game of one season; and no real games. I don’t have the books, so I can’t say, but really that makes no sense. I don’t get it.
-Speaking of the Sun-Times, their most polarizing alum, and everyone’s favorite villain, Jay Mariotti is back. An open letter from Jay himself
I’m excited to launch a multimedia production that I believe will be the next digital prototype for sports commentators and columnists. Welcome to The Mariotti Show, a cross-platform Web presentation (mariottishow.com) featuring live streaming of my daily radio program — Monday through Friday, noon to 3 p.m. ET — wrapped around my long-form columns, quick-cycle takes, breaking stories, videos, audience interaction and other 24/7 content from someone who has done it all and seen it all in sports media.
Humble, reserved and grounded as always, Jay! #YouStayClassy
-Haha. The picture leading this post is exactly how I feel when I look at Urban Meyer
. It includes Northwestern
University Director of Digital and Social Communications Doug Meffley. He’s also the voice of the Chicago Bandits. It was taken while the Ohio State Buckeyes
Coach was at the podium during Big Ten
Media Days a couple weeks ago at the Hilton Towers. Meffley was moderating Q&A...
It’s a very special, heart-warming edition of the Chicago Sports Media Watch interview series! Why? Because this one is VIDEO! That calls for ALL CAPS!
We also have a fantastic guest on today: Beth Long of Fox Sports, Fox Sports Next and the Chicago Sun-Times. See just how much more wonderful the CSMW interview becomes when it’s done via video instead of by email, over-the-phone or in person with recorded audio. Beth Long and I did this segment after the conclusion of Big Ten
football media day.
I think you can tell from the bags under my eyes that I did this on four hours sleep. But hey, like Ryan Lochte
famously told us “if you want to be a man at night, you’ve got to be a man in the morning.” And no, I have no clue what that means. Unlike Lochte, Long is a swimmer with an intellect, having competed on the Division I level. Also, she ran track for Syracuse and Gardner-Webb...
David Haugh signed on with the Chicago Tribune
in 2003 after spending 10 years as sports columnist at the South Bend Tribune. He became the Chicago Bears
beat writer when joining the Tribune before becoming the Bears columnist from 2006-08. Before the 2009 season, David Haugh became the Tribune’s 17th “In the Wake of the News,” columnist.
In this exclusive interview, Haugh and I cover a lot of ground, and get “controversial” at times. Well, you may find some of these topics controversial. And if so, be sure voice your opinion in the comment threads below.
Follow David Haugh on Twitter
There’s been a lot of bad news surrounding Notre Dame
football the past couple years. Manti Te’o, Lennay Kakua
, Tommy Rees
, Lizzy Seeberg
, Declan Sullivan
, Michael Floyd
and now, just this past weekend, starting QB Everett Golson
. (Related: Brian Kelly
discusses post Everett Golson QB situation
Throw in the embarrassment at the hands of the Alabama Crimson Tide
in the college football
national title game, and Brian Kelly
flirting with NFL
head coaching gigs, and you have enough drama to fill a full season of Friday Night Lights.
Heck, there’s enough material for a few episodes generated by the quarterback position alone: Everett Golson
, Gunner Kiel
, Tommy Rees.
and Jimmy Clausen
was pretty much a real life version of J.D. McCoy from FNL.
And I haven’t even mentioned that star Defensive Lineman Louis Nix
III is now Twitter BFF with porn star Emily Austin
. Not that there’s anything wrong that!
What red-blooded American male wouldn’t want to get to know Ms. Austin! (And why am I using all these exclamation points!) However, at a socially ultra-conservative Catholic school like Notre Dame
, it’s probably frowned upon to have one of your marquee athletes as social media
buddies with the star of Innocent Until Proven Filthy 11
So with all the off-the-field noise and distractions at the most marquee program in college football
history, how does coach Brian Kelly
Time for a Paul M. Banks Chicago Sports Media Watch interview...
During his first two years in South Bend, Brian Kelly
coached Notre Dame
to a 16-10 record, and one bowl win. In his third season, the Irish went undefeated (12-0) in the regular season only to get throttled by the Alabama Crimson Tide
in the national title game. So Kelly does have a BCS Championship game appearance on his resume, even though they only showed up on paper; they didn't seem to show up for the actual game. During Kelly’s tenure, the most prestigious program in college football
has seen a lot of negative attention; mostly off-the-field.
In just three years at the helm, there have been eight incidences of bad press
to hit Kelly’s Fighting Irish
program. Some of the negative publicity is warranted, some is overblown. Three were essentially the same thing (underage alcohol citation/arrests) and two involved student fatalities. And one involved the fatality of a fake person. Heck, the ND quarterbacks alone
have provided enough drama lately to fuel a whole season of Friday Night Lights
Let’s go through all eight...
“I don’t disagree with you at all regarding the role of sideline reporters. Most of the time, I find those interviews to be fairly useless,” a nationally relevant sideline reporter
once told me years ago.
The opinion I expressed and she agreed with was “sideline interviews serve no purpose.” In our off-the-record chat, I stated further, “We never needed these practices to begin with.”
And we have the testimony of NFL
Network and Notre Dame
reporter Alex Flanagan.
This exchange between Flanagan and The Sherman Report
says it all.
Sherman: “You know what the critics say about the value of sideline reporters. CBS doesn’t even use them. What’s your response?”
Flanagan: “I’m often asked to defend the job of the sideline reporter
. I think of myself as an accessory. I don’t know if you can appreciate this, but I tell my female friends, ‘When you get dressed up in that great outfit, the one thing that can top it off is a great accessory. Like a necklace or ear rings.’
Are we a necessity for a telecast?
No. But I can see a lot of things that happen on the field that (the announcers) can’t see from up high.”...
No matter what NFL
team you follow, we all have this in common today.
Your team, each and every of the 32 NFL
clubs (or at least every team with a pick among the first 32), did not draft Manti Teo
in the first round last night.
And that is a wonderful thing.
Twitter lit up with jokes about Manti Teo
being an imaginary first round draft choice last night. Lennay Kakua hoax references were plentiful on social media.
And when the first round of the NFL Draft
ended, we were all free to enjoy the schadenfreude of Manti Teo
not hearing his name called. Perhaps The Onion
did it best. However, this is about much more than disliking an overrated college football
player. This is about much more than disliking Notre Dame
. Lots of football fans have distaste for both of those entities...
It’s really hard to size up the Chicago Bears
draft this year. Partially because the Bears
draft needs are many. Partially because it’s a “fat boy draft” like Mike Mayock
said! It’s “not sexy,” especially up at the top.
And this draft is the weirdest ever. Anything can happen. No NFL
teams seem to be in love with any prospect. Which creates more uncertainty than in any other draft that I can recall. So it’ll be fun to see how many picks all of us mock draft geeks get right Thursday night; especially vs. Mel Kiper, Mayock
Good luck to all who created a mock!
Fox 32 WFLD Bears
reporter Dionne Miller
said in my exclusive with her the Bears
will go O Line with their pick at #20. Most media
doing mock drafts and/or Bears
beat reporters are saying Linebacker to replace Brian Urlacher; Others say OT to strengthen the team’s weakest position.
They’re both right...