Ariel Helwani and Pat McAfee have sparked a nice working relationship over the past few years, prompting Helwani to make the former NFL punter his second interview on The Ariel Helwani Show.
McAfee discussed the origins of his media career that included a rare opportunity to host a national show while he was still punting for the Indianapolis Colts.
“I thought there was going to be a good chance for success,” McAfee said in a more reserved interview tone than normally heard on his daily radio show. “Just because I was looking around the sports media landscape and there wasn’t a lot of people like me.
“I was getting a great opportunity while I was playing the game to do shows like Bob & Tom, a nationally syndicated morning show here in Indianapolis, IN. I think they are on like a hundred some stations, comedians come through, and I got to guest host that like once a week.”
McAfee shocked plenty of people across the country when he abruptly retired in 2017 to enter the media space. The host went on the record with Helwani saying his greatest motivator is money, and he took a risk giving up his NFL paychecks.
“All I wanted to be was rich,” McAfee said during another part of the interview. “I didn’t care how it was, what it was… I think people have seen me do a lot of different things now, and that’s because for a moment in time, in a certain stage of my life, I wanted to do that because I knew that the endgame was a lot of money.”
The former Colt described gaining that mentality watching pro wrestling as a kid.
“I watched Monday Night RAW every Monday, and I saw guys like Ric Flair, and I saw The Rock, and Stone Cold [Steve Austin], and it was the Attitude Era, and Triple-H, and I knew they were making a lot of money.”
Self-awareness is a crucial trait in sports media and life in general. McAfee recognized he had the internal skills to speak to the masses in a WWE-type style, making him a star and a rich man all at once.
Russ Heltman is a daily news writer for BSM. He is the morning host and producer for 89.3 WMKV in Cincinnati, OH. He also works in gameday communications for FC Cincinnati and additionally contributes to the AllBengals blog for Sports Illustrated. Russ can be found on Twitter @RussHeltman11 or you can reach him by email at Heltmandm@yahoo.com.
Bomani Jones: I’m Better At Talking About Political, Social Issues Than Most In Sports Media
“I personally am better at talking about those things than most people who work in this industry. Like I feel like I can say that fairly and then it not really be an arrogant thing.”
Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James found himself in a few headlines last week when he questioned reporters for not asking him about the recent Washington Post story and photo surrounding Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, and ESPN commentator Bomani Jones took the opportunity to discuss the revelation.
Jones was pictured as a 14 year old among a crowd during an early stage of integration of public schools in Arkansas during the civil rights movement.
LeBron pointed out that he would field questions when there’s a controversy surrounding a Black person and spoke about the situation with former Cavaliers teammate Kyrie Irving, but he found it curious that no one had asked his opinion on the Jerry Jones story. LeBron had long considered himself a Cowboys fan, but in recent years he’s stopped supporting the team over Jones’ mandate that Dallas players stand for the National Anthem.
On his ESPN podcast The Right Time, host Bomani Jones talked about LeBron and circled it around to how he and other ESPN personalities caught a ton of flack for speaking about political or societal issues that often don’t fall within the confines of sports.
Jones said that being able to talk about political and societal issues comes easier to him than it does to most members of the sports media.
“I personally am better at talking about those things than most people who work in this industry,” Jones said. “Like I feel like I can say that fairly and then it not really be an arrogant thing.”
Jones said it comes down to the fact that there’s a bias at play. Are people going to take offense to what you’re saying because they disagree, or are they going to like what you’re going to say because they agree?
“They’re reinforcing the fact that you’re reinforcing what it is that you want to hear,” Jones said. “But the truth is that most people are not qualified to talk about these things before the world, because talking about these things before the world is very, very difficult.”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He works full-time as a multimedia specialist at the Virginia State Corporation Commission, while also putting in part-time work for News Radio WRVA and 910 The Fan in Richmond. Additionally, you can find Jordan contributing coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly and ABC 8News. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.
John Jastremski Fires Back After Craig Carton Criticism
“I’m not listening to a crook. So you know what? Go take a f—ing hike. How about that.”
Earlier this week, WFAN afternoon host Craig Carton said John Jastremski — a former WFAN host now hosting a podcast for The Ringer — “shunned” his radio career advice.
During his New York New York podcast Thursday, Jastremski strongly condemned Carton’s remarks.
“I don’t like going here with this stuff, ’cause I know this plays right into what this guy likes to do,” Jastremski said. “This is his M.O. This is what he’s done his entire career. It’s what he’s done for his entire career and he’s had success doing it. He lives for this stuff. But it really set me off. It set me off because I gotta see it on Barrett Sports Media while I’m on vacation. Like I wanna be bothered with this shit, number one. Number two, it’s just tone-deaf, insulting, and flat-out rude every which way.
“Number one: going after people who work at McDonald’s? Who the hell are you to do that? Number two: You’re insulting a multi-billion dollar company where I work. I have a great job, a great platform, a great producer. I have two great jobs, I might add. And you’re insulting both of them. By the way, you’re on that network. Five days a week. And you’re insulting that network. How stupid are you? Taking shots at people of the network you’re on, I’m on. And I could tell you, it pays well. I do ok.
“As for career advice? Guess what? I listen to legends. Bill Simmons, you ever hear of him? Worth a lot more than you. Mike Francesa? My boy Adam Schein? I listen to those guys. I’m not listening to a crook. So you know what? Go take a f—ing hike. How about that.”
Calling Carton a crook harkens back to the WFAN afternoon host’s stint in federal prison for participating in a ponzi scheme that scammed investors out of $5.6 million that he in turn used to pay off gambling debts. Carton was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison before serving just over a year in prison before being released in 2020.
The Dan Le Batard Show With Stugotz Moving To New Studio
The show continued to be recorded inside the studio at the Clevelander after it departed ESPN Radio’s national lineup in 2021.
The show continued to be recorded inside the studio at the Clevelander after it departed ESPN Radio’s national lineup in 2021. It has remained the home for the show since Le Batard and John Skipper formed Meadowlark Media.
After a $50 million distribution deal with DraftKings was secured, the Meadowlark podcast network has grown in both reach and talent, allowing for an expanded studio space.
No immediate details were given on where the new studio space would be located.