Sports TV News
Tirico’s Vantage Point Premiers on Golf Channel
Mike Tirico will host the premier episode of the Golf Channel news magazine Vantage Point tonight as the channel prepares for the start of the British Open. The show will be part of the network’s Golf Central Live From the Open coverage.
The debut episode of Vantage Point will feature Tirico’s interview with Rickie Fowler on-site at Carnoustie. Tirico will also moderate a panel discussion of former “Champion Golfers of the Year” including David Duval, Tom Lehman, and Justin Leonard. Jim Mackay will moderate a conversation between Michael Greller and John Wood as the two caddies breakdown last year’s British Open and the final day pairing of Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth.
Vantage Point premiers tonight at 9pm Eastern. It is part of the more than 60 hours The Golf Channel is devoting to coverage of The British Open.
Sports TV News
Skip Bayless: I’m The Cal Ripken of Debate Shows
“I have done 52,000 debate topics on live TV, which means I’m almost 52,000 and 0 at winning debates because I don’t think I’ve ever lost one.”
If you ask Skip Bayless if he has ever lost a debate on UNDISPUTED or when he was at First Take, he will tell you he has been undefeated against whomever he goes up against on the 9-10 topics that he debates daily.
On his podcast, The Skip Bayless Show, Bayless made an estimate as to how many shows he has done over the duration of over two decades and how he compared himself to being the Cal Ripken of sports debate shows.
“Here’s my best estimation. Over 23 years and 4 months on national television, I have done 5,715 shows. If we have averaged 9 topics per show, that means I have done 52,000 debate topics on live TV, which means I’m almost 52,000 and 0 at winning debates because I don’t think I’ve ever lost one.”
“Nobody is more experienced in the debate format than I am. You can say I am the Cal Ripken of the genre. My friends, Michael Wilson and Tony Kornheiser, have been on TV for more years doing their show, which is all-time great, but their show is only 30 minutes a day. Mine was 2 hours a day at ESPN and 2.5 hours a day for the 6.5 years I’ve been at FS1.”
In the mailbag portion of his show, Bayless gave away the keys to winning a debate and how he always is ready whenever a show goes live.
“It’s preparation and concentration. Most debates are won the night before by researching and thinking them through. If he goes there, I will go here. If he goes here, I will go there. Then, of course, when that red light goes on, you must lock in and you must hyper focus for each of those 9-10 topics. If you let your mind wander for even a split second, you lose. We are live and I live for live.”
While some might disagree with what Bayless has to say, he knows that he doesn’t say things for shock value and he is not afraid to say how he feels about any subject.
“Shock jocks get exposed as frauds, as one-trick ponies. I am not that. God gave me a pretty good brain, a pretty good feel for sports and the people in and around sports. I watch those people very closely. I watch the games very closely and I am constantly asking myself what is really going on here?
“I am not afraid to say what I see and I see a lot. At heart, I am a truth teller, not a shock jock. I am often proven right. In fact, if you want to know the truth…I am invariably proven to be right again and again over time. People just try to explain me away and I just keep showing up every day after day after day. I stand strong. I don’t back off. I endure.”
Ricky Keeler is a reporter for BSM with a primary focus on sports media podcasts and national personalities. He is also an active podcaster with an interest in pursuing a career in sports media. You can find him on Twitter @Rickinator555 or reach him by email at RickJKeeler@gmail.com.
Sports TV News
Michael Wilbon to Resume Traveling After Foot Surgery
“Am I going to games right now? No, but I probably wouldn’t be going to many games in March anyways before the playoffs.”
If you watch a lot of ESPN, you are used to seeing Michael Wilbon on screen in front of a desert backdrop. That is pretty standard when the PTI and NBA Countdown star is broadcasting from his home in Arizona.
That backdrop has been seen a lot this year as Wilbon has been off the road. He is recovering from surgery to repair an ulcer on his right foot. They are part of his struggle with Type II diabetes. He had the surgery in April.
Since then, he has been getting around on a scooter, which he joked with the New York Post’s Ryan Glasspiegel is exactly what LeBron James is doing right now.
“When you’re 64 years old, you’re not gonna come back from that overnight — I don’t know if you would at 44 either.”
Michael Wilbon says that he expects to return to the road this week. From what he told Glasspiegel, it sounds like we are more likely to see him in the studio than at an arena.
“I can still work,” he said. “Am I going to games right now? No, but I probably wouldn’t be going to many games in March anyways before the playoffs.”
Sports TV News
Paul Byrd, Brian Jordan Won’t Return to Braves Broadcast Booth
“Brian Jordan was part of the team of analysts covering the Braves on TV last year. Byrd was a studio host.”
Atlanta Braves fans will be greeted with a very different television broadcast when Major League Baseball’s regular season begins later this month. Bally Sports South has undergone a full talent overhaul.
When the network announced its talent for the 2023 season, two names were missing. Neither Paul Byrd nor Brian Jordan will return. Justin Toscano of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution noted that Byrd’s decision was a personal matter, while the team made efforts to bring Jordan back.
Brian Jordan was part of the team of analysts covering the Braves on TV last year. Byrd was a studio host. He was at the front of a season preview show, which premiered last week.
The Braves have been hit with plenty of other changes this offseason. Chip Caray will be replaced by Brandon Gaudin on play-by-play after Caray decided to leave Atlanta for St. Louis. Also, Tom Glavine returns as a game analyst after taking time away from the team in 2022.