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Emmanuel Acho Talks About Web Series Success On Adam Schefter Podcast

“He mentioned in the interview that he has conversations with Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon and he has spoken to different NFL and MLB organizations.”

Ricky Keeler

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One of the more popular and powerful series on the internet lately is Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man hosted by former NFL player Emmanuel Acho. Acho helps start those tough conversations that can help make change while also working as one of the hosts on Speak For Yourself on FS1. 

Before FS1, Acho worked for ESPN as a college football analyst and one of the frequent analysts on Get Up. This week, Acho was on The Adam Schefter Podcast to talk about the origins of the social media series that is sweeping the country and his new book deal with Oprah.

“After the murder of George Floyd, I said ‘I got to do something.’ I almost felt guilty talking about race because I am a sports analyst. I almost felt guilty talking about being black and the struggles that come with being black even if it’s my own struggles because you all don’t want to hear about this, but you have to. 

“At first, it was going to be called “Questions White People Have.” I reached out to Marcus Spears (ESPN analyst), Rachel Lindsay (of ABC’s The Bachelorette), a couple of white people and I said ‘hey, I would love to have a dialogue and roundtable to ask and answer questions,’ but the problem is the coronavirus has put everyone in different cities and made it harder for everyone to travel. It was going to take too long, so I said I would do it myself.”

For Acho, the reaction that he has received from these videos has reached millions of people. He mentioned in the interview that he has conversations with Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon and he has spoken to different NFL and MLB organizations. 

“I’m not reaching out to people. I’m letting the conversation happen organically,” Acho said. “Then, I try to have a conversation with them. I reach out to people who reach out to me. It has been encouraging and powerful, dude. If you believe in the goal, if you want to see the world become a better place, I feel I have the platform to do that.”

Last week, it was announced that Acho received a book deal from Oprah to write two books called Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man and Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Boy. The former title will be released in November. Acho made it clear that the book can have more of an impact than social media because the next step can be taken. 

“The book will allow me to give them what I haven’t been able to give them via words. It will allow me to take things a step further. Sizzle comes with the spoken word. If you want to make generational impact, it comes with the written word.”  

While doing these videos, Acho has been trying to balance being a host on FS1 as well. He does have production teams in Austin, Texas and in Los Angeles that help him with the project. He mentioned how sports is his career but doing these conversations has been his calling. Yet, sports has given him a chance to smile. 

During the podcast, Schefter brought about the topic of racial reconciliation and what the goal is.

“I think that reconciliation is not a finish line that you cross,” Acho responded. “Football games, basketball games have an end. When the 60 minutes are up, there is a final score. That’s not what this is with racial reconciliation. It’s not the line that you cross, but the road that you travel.”

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Big Cat: Listening to ESPN Wisconsin After Packers Playoff Loss ‘Highlight of My NFL Season’

“For three hours, I sat in my car. I arrived home –it’s a 20-minute drive — I arrived home, and I sat for three hours listening to callers be like ‘blow up Lambeau!’, ‘get 12 (Rodgers) outta here!’, ‘we need to build a dome, this team isn’t built for the outside’, and that was the highlight of my NFL season. And I have no problem saying that.”

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During a recent interview with Barstool Sports, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers had a poignant question for noted Chicago Bears fan Dan “Big Cat” Katz that he then used to slam the Packers quarterback while also expressing his enjoyment for Green Bay fans.

“Is it hard, for you as a Bears fan, that some of your greatest moments are cheering against me when the Bears aren’t playing?”, the Packers quarterback half-jokingly asked.

“Very good question,” Katz responded. “No, it’s actually great, because what I’ve told everyone is — I’m very realistic about the Bears — ‘not a great franchise, (the Bears) just don’t do the right things’ for the most part. Every year I look forward to the playoffs and the game that you’re going to lose. I’ve told this story on air, but, when you guys lost to San Francisco this year we were watching the game in New Jersey and I drove back to Brooklyn — brag — and I listened to (Mark) Tauscher. For three hours, I sat in my car. I arrived home –it’s a 20-minute drive — I arrived home, and I sat for three hours listening to callers be like ‘blow up Lambeau!’, ‘get 12 (Rodgers) outta here!’, ‘we need to build a dome, this team isn’t built for the outside’, and that was the highlight of my NFL season. And I have no problem saying that.”

Rodgers laughed at Big Cat as he delivered the message, seemingly getting genuine joy out of the conversation.

“I know I’m a loser,” Katz continued. “That’s the best part. I’ve come to grips with the fact that I’m a loser, so yes, watching you lose in the playoffs is…that’s my Super Bowl. And I’ve won a lot of Super Bowls if you do it that way. More than you.”

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Sports Online

Michael Silver Joins San Francisco Chronicle

“I’m ecstatic to join forces with some of my favorite journalists and be part of a publication I’ve been devouring for decades — in the greatest region on Earth,” Silver told The Chronicle.

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Veteran NFL reporter Michael Silver is joining The San Francisco Chronicle as their newest NFL columnist.

Silver will continue his work with The Volume, Bally Sports, and Backstage Media in addition to adding a column with the Chronicle.

“I’m ecstatic to join forces with some of my favorite journalists and be part of a publication I’ve been devouring for decades — in the greatest region on Earth,” Silver told The Chronicle. “It will be a thrill to write columns alongside Scott Ostler, a living legend, and my amazingly talented friend Ann Killion, who I’ve dreamed of working with since we were competing on the 49ers beat in the early ’90s. … As a native San Franciscan, this feels like home.

Silver has previously written for Sports Illustrated, Rolling Stone, GQ, NFL Network, and Yahoo! Sports, among others. He’s also authored books on Jerry Rice, Kurt Warner, and Dennis Rodman.

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Sports Online

Skip Bayless Tries to Win Debate Rounds ‘Like Muhammad Ali’

“I must admit I have been known upon rare occasion to try to win a debate the way Ali won rounds with a flurry at the end trying to get the last word also going through the stop or wrap sign.”

Ricky Keeler

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Skip Bayless

When people watch debate shows, they sometimes don’t want the debate to end. However, bills have to get paid and commercials have to be shown. However, when is the right time for a debate show to air a commercial? On the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show, Skip was asked in an email by a listener about when he and Shannon Sharpe know to go to a debate on UNDISPUTED on FS1. Bayless said the show has more room to roam in the first two hours, but eventually, he gets the signal from his line producer.

“We loosely plan on 22-23 minutes in what we call our A block. We block out 25-ish minutes for our B block, which is the only block in the show that has two topics in it.”

“Our line producer in the control room, Nick, who is in our ears. He tries to sense along the trail when we are winding down or when we are trying to push the clock too far. His first cue to us in our ears, he tries to avoid speaking when we are speaking, the first cue is ‘start to wrap’. Then, a minute or so later, he says ‘wrap’. If we continue to not wrap, maybe we get a much stronger ‘wrap’.”

However, it might not be easy for Bayless and Sharpe to end the debate, especially if they both want to be the one who wins the argument. So, sometimes, they can easily go past the hard wrap sign that is given.

“Sometimes the guy sitting across from me at the debate desk gets all worked up and barrels right through that stop sign. I must admit I have been known upon rare occasion to try to win a debate the way Ali won rounds with a flurry at the end trying to get the last word also going through the stop or wrap sign,” said Bayless.

If there is one thing that Bayless is proud of, it’s the fact that UNDISPUTED has never gone past the allotted time, which allows The HERD with Colin Cowherd to begin on schedule.

“I must tell you not in 6 years have we ever not finished a show right on time. Not once have we pushed Colin over the cliff as he begins his show. That is just not acceptable.” 

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