Monthly Archives: January 2014

Marshawn Lynch Does not Like to Talk to the Media and that is Just Fine


It is no secret that the Super Bowl is much more than just a football game. One of the major events of the week is the annual Media Day, which took place on Tuesday.

Interviews take place all week, but the giant media horde in attendance was a focus on Tuesday.

This group of media members are not just football reporters, but may be reporters from any media outlet that could get credentials, which is not all that difficult.

For this specific telling the demographics of the media members do not matter. Merely an aside.

Anyway, going into Media Day it appeared that the focus would be on Richard Sherman. He was the big story following his comments made after his Seahawks defeated the 49ers in the NFC Championship game.

Sherman was able to defend his comments, as would be expected of a Stanford graduate. He is a very intelligent man and wrote a very eloquent piece on his comments.

Although his comments were seemingly in the past, the media likely would have made them a focus on Media Day if it were not for the actions of another player; or lack of actions.

The player I am referring to is Marshawn Lynch.

Frankly, Lynch does not like to talk to the media. Should that matter? No. But in today’s age of the constant quest for more information it is a major story.

Lynch was even threatened with a major fine if he did not talk to the media that he avoided all season. The fine and outrage for Lynch not wanting to talk to the media is almost comical.

This man is a football player, and he has made it clear that all he cares about is what happens on the field. If he does not want to answer questions about why is he isn’t answering questions, why are people getting offended. Are Lynch’s answers going to lead to some type of revelation that no one knew before? Probably not.

The majority of questions his way had to do with Skittles and Beast Mode, which are not deep questions, especially for a player of his caliber.

So if Marshawn Lynch does not want to spend more than seven minutes answering basic questions, good for him. He will continue to prove himself on the field, which is far more important to Seahawks fans than any interview.

Advice to media members getting “snubbed” by Lynch: don’t take it personally.

A First for Men’s Sports?


They say, “There is a first time for everything,” and the January 25 late night match up between Gonzaga and BYU on ESPN2 featured one of those moments. It was an experience that was not only entertaining but potentially a huge historic step for women in sport media.

I have watched very few men’s college basketball games covered by one female announcer and before this game, I had never watched a game covered by two. Because I did not recognize Kara Lawson or Beth Mowins’ faces right away, two questions popped into my head; are they the first all female crew to cover men’s sports for a major network and how great of a resume do you have to build to be a part of such a rarity in sports?

I held off researching my questions until the end of the game in order to evaluate Lawson and Mowins’ coverage.

During the game, I was not surprised to find out that they are both very good announcers. They kept the game exciting and interesting with their comments and analysis, and even did a great job of incorporating information about other college basketball teams and the NBA including comments about Carmelo Anthony’s 62-point game. I usually don’t pay attention to announcers but their coverage definitely kept my attention.

It was after the game that I grew even more impressed with Lawson and Mowins. First off, I could not find any evidence of any other all female crews covering men’s sports for a major network. This means that even if they aren’t the first, they are one of the first teams to reach such a great achievement. Their experience certainly gives them the credibility to be a part of this rare situation.
It wasn’t until I began researching Kara Lawson’s career that I realized she was a WNBA player that I had seen play multiple times. As far as broadcasting, she has been working with ESPN since 2004 and became the first woman to serve as a national broadcast analyst for an NBA game in 2007 (

Mowins’ resume also proves her credibility, which is highlighted by the fact that she has been working in sports casting since 1991 and became the second woman to call ESPN nationally televised college football games in 2005 ( Nonetheless, if this is a first in men’s sports, these two were great selections to make it happen

Product of the Maxwell Project Off to a Great Start in Sport Media Career


Less than a year after earning a master’s degree in sport administration from BGSU, former women’s basketball player and standout student Simone Eli has found herself in a great position as a sports anchor for FOX10 news in Mobile, AL. Since accepting her “dream job” on April 30, Eli has had the opportunity to meet Nick Saban, witness one of the greatest finishes in college football history (2013 Iron Bowl), and Travel to Pasadena, CA to cover the 2014 BCS National Championship Game. This successful Falcon is living proof that with hard work and the right education, goals can be reached.

Click on the following link to read an article about Eli written by Mark Griffin of The Press (Millbury, OH):

Sending reporters to Sochi: Is it worth the risk?


The point of the Maxwell Media Watch is to analyze how the media is covering sports. But what happens when the ability to cover said sports becomes compromised due to the chance of death that comes with the coverage.

Sochi, Russia is not a safe place for anyone, and will be even less safe when the Olympics take place there is a few weeks. Terrorist attacks have been promised, as they usually are at a major sporting event, but after what we saw take place at the Boston Marathon in the seemingly invincible United States, it is tough, and even naïve, to believe that there will be no attacks at the Olympics.

When U.S. warships are at the ready for a sporting event, it is not a good sign. Those ships are ready for the athletes, but what happens to the fans and media members that will be in Sochi if an attack takes place.

The presence of warships and military planes makes it seem slightly comforting, but if there is a major attack, it will still take time to evacuate the US athletes. It is not as easy as them being taken to the coast and loaded onto ships. It will be chaos and who will be stuck in the middle of all it while still being in charge of providing information? The journalists. Right it in the middle of it all with a camera on them, or a notepad in hand.

It brings up a question that unfortunately will not be asked: Is it worth it to send journalists to the Olympics in Sochi with all of the terror threats?

American journalists have been sent to war zones, so there is no question that they will be going somewhere where there are only threats of terrorism. I suppose it comes with the job.

All of the politics of the situation need not be discussed in this space, because all I am concerned about is the safety of the journalists. With television coverage already being our dominant form of taking in the Olympics, must we have every major news outlet send someone to cover the events? The answer is no, but it will still happen because of the never-ending quest to be on top of the media ratings.

What I ask to anyone who watches the Olympics, or any situation where a reporter is in danger is simply to respect that man or woman for what they are doing. They are putting their own life at risk so you can get coverage of an event. I repeat, their own lives are at risk so you at home can get the news. An honorable position if I have ever seen one.

X: Still the Unknown


January 23, most popular for the date of birth of John Hancock, or notable mixed martial arts fighter, Tito Ortiz — or maybe this date doesn’t carry much significance to you at all.

Actually, today marks the commencement of the 2014 winter X Games. Unfortunately, many of you were just as unaware of these birth dates as you were the X Games. Is this a problem?

Certainly, seeing as the sport media as a whole does not seem to think this event carries much significance, why should you the viewer?

About three or four days prior, I saw a small report on ESPN stating that celebrated snowboarder, Shaun White had decided to participate in the games after previously stating he would hold out. This was the first instance in which I had an encountered any discussion about the event. This held true until I saw another similar report just a day before the event, stating that Shaun White had a change of heart and had chose not to partake in the X Games.

These two stories, both centered about White instead of the X Games as a whole, help explain why the interest in the games is so miniscule. The only narrative that ESPN felt to be worthy was that of an individual as opposed to the four-day event in its entirety.

Unfortunately, the X Games preliminary events are all to be shown via ESPN’s online streaming service, ESPN3. It isn’t until 9pm on a Thursday night that you can watch a sponsored event. Even that is merely a rebroadcast placed in an undesirable and inconvenient time slot, fighting for viewership against the Miami Heat basketball game.

The promotion of this large event has been sparse and essentially nonexistent and until ESPN opts against this mindset, the X Games and extreme sports in general will remain a regrettable afterthought.

America’s pastime under review


Major League Baseball and its owners have unanimously voted to expand the use of replay. With this being a hot topic within the sport of baseball, the story has failed to garner much attention by the prodigious network that is, ESPN.

The slight attention that ESPN chose to bring to the topic was directly followed by a banter-filled mockery of the history of manager arguments. And it’s this notion that has caused baseball to become an afterthought in the discussion of relevant sports in America today.

Instead, ESPN will continually show draft predictions at the bottom of the screen for the NFL draft of which is three months away.

Why is this so?

America has grown to love the game of football much more than that of the alleged long and boring sport of baseball. Instead, the biggest baseball stories in recent memory include the story of Alex Rodriguez and his PED scandal, or the blown call by Jim Joyce, which ultimately stole a perfect game from Armando Galarraga.

The notable stories in baseball have become scandalous and controversial as opposed to inviting and representative of the great sport that was once deemed America’s pastime.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. & Richard Sherman


Another dreadful Monday in the new year of 2014.

Or is it?

This day, being the third Monday in January marks the observed birthday of the late Martin Luther King Jr. Many people recognize him for his renowned speech and his advocacy for equal rights, but why is it that discrimination is still present in our society today?

The actions surrounding the NFC championship game last night vividly demonstrate why these actions still persist in a society that strives for equality.

Following the game, a black man with long dreadlocks chose to pat an opposing player on the buttocks while taunting him after making the game-sealing play to advance to the Super Bowl. This has become quite the story among media outside of the sports world, but why?

This story has become relevant because an African American athlete decided to bluntly rant after the game in a not so eloquent manner about the disrespect the opposing team displayed to him. He followed up these remarks by proclaiming himself the “best” and bringing the attention to himself in a selfish manner. The reporter at the time, Erin Andrews, seemed to be flustered and taken back by the violent post game tirade, and many viewed her actions as that of fear and disgust.

These actions and implications have turned this football issue into a matter of race.

The tirade by Sherman was classless, egotistical, conceited, and utterly shameful. But this fact should not be accompanied by the color of his skin. An array of players in professional sports choose to be outlandish, passionate, and boisterous while on the field, whether that be MLB players AJ Pierzynski and Brian Wilson, former NBA player Rick Barry, former Tennis player John McEnroe, or fellow NFL player Aaron Rodgers. The parallel between each of these athletes you ask?

They all have white skin.

What does this show? No matter the color of your skin, no matter your level of intelligence, no matter the era in which you played, there will always be players who express their passion for the game in a controversial manner. What this does not mean is that if a player becomes selfish for a moment, it does not make him a selfish player, an undesirable teammate, or an inadequate human being.

“It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked ‘insufficient funds.’”

– Martin Luther King Jr.

This quotation by Dr. King helps show how far America still has to go in reaching true equality amongst everyone, no matter his or her skin color. And while this specific behavior by Richard Sherman is not desirable, Dr. King had advocated for a society in which any man of color could have the freedom to express himself without the color of his skin becoming a disruption.

So, on a day in which we celebrate civil rights, and the life of a man who advocated for freedom, do not allow yourself to fall victim to the mainstream media and its villainous portrayal of Richard Sherman. Know that sports, while often a commonplace for many people, can yield undesirable yet passionate behavior of which would not occur outside the lines.

As Dr. King would say, “Let us not wallow in the valley of despair”, but rather, judge a man by his character alone, not by the color of his skin.