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Big 12 Bans Texas Tech Radio Crew From Upcoming Game

“Texas Tech University has not officially commented on the broadcast plans for the Oklahoma State game.”

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Texas Tech fans will not hear familiar voices this week if they tune into the radio call of the Red Raiders’ game against Oklahoma State. Play-by-play man Brian Jensen and analyst John Harris have been reprimanded by the Big 12 and barred from calling the game.

The conference took action on Wednesday. During Texas Tech’s game last Saturday, Jensen and Harris were very critical of the officials in the game. They even suggested that the league was conspiring to ensure Iowa State won.

“I’ll say it right now, the Big 12 does not want Iowa State to lose this game,” Harris said on air after an interception by Texas Tech at the goal line was overturned.

Jensen tweeted about the call from the broadcast booth during the game.

The final straw for the league may have been John Harris naming the officials on air and saying that the Big 12 should “be embarrassed” by them.

Timothy Burke collected all of the audio and tweeted it out in a thread showing what was happening on the field at the time of the comments.

“I understand the roles of the play-by-play and color analyst,” Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby said in a press release. “However as University representatives they also have an obligation to adhere to Conference policy regarding comments about game officials.  The comments by the Red Raider Radio Network booth announcers were contrary to expected levels of respect and professionalism.  Questioning the integrity of Conference officials and specifically calling out members of the officiating crew is well beyond appropriate and permissible behavior.”

Texas Tech University has not officially commented on the broadcast plans for the Oklahoma State game. The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal speculates that Geoff Haxton, who calls play-by-play of the school’s basketball and baseball teams, will call the action and sideline reporter Chris Level will serve as the analyst.

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Paul Finebaum Writing Book on Nick Saban/Jimbo Fisher Feud

“I think there’s a lot that has not been uncovered, and I feel very confident we are well under way of breaking this code in many different ways,” Finebaum told AL.com’s Mark Heim.

Jordan Bondurant

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ESPN’s Paul Finebaum is taking some time to work on a book, and some of the subject matter is going to be juicy.

Finebaum plans to work with John Talty of AL.com to write the book. This will be Finebaum’s first book since 2014.

Plans are to highlight the rivalry between Alabama head coach Nick Saban and Texas A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher. That rivalry was amplified this past spring when the two coaches traded verbal jabs about recruiting and NIL.

“I think there’s a lot that has not been uncovered, and I feel very confident we are well under way of breaking this code in many different ways,” Finebaum told AL.com’s Mark Heim. “There is a great appeal. I’ve looked at other things in the past but, to me, this is the most intriguing story that I’ve seen in many many years.”

The book will be published by Penguin press and has a fall 2023 release date. Even Hollywood will be paying attention to the book, as a potential TV series or movie could arise.

Finebaum added that he hopes to take a deeper dive into NIL and talk to SEC commissioner Greg Sankey.

“The main goal is to get the truth, unvarnished and as accurate displayed as we can through individuals speaking on the record or through sources,” he said. “That’s all you can hope to do. The goal is to get beneath the surface and go where you can’t go in a 3-hour radio show or a 750-word column.”

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Mason & Ireland Ink Contract Extensions with ESPN Los Angeles

The pair signed a multi-year contract and that will ensure they continue to be the longest-running duo in L.A.

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Mason and Ireland

The long-running West Coast sounds of Mason & Ireland will continue. The pair signed a multi-year contract and that will ensure they continue to be the longest-running duo for ESPN Los Angeles.

Steve Mason and John Ireland have been on-and-off partners in radio since 1992.

Mason said of the extension, “I love L.A. sports and I can’t imagine working anywhere else. I really appreciate ESPN and our new owner Good Karm Brands. We’ve got a really good team on Mason & Ireland with producer Greg Bergman and associate producer Jorge Briones. And I especially love doing the show every day with John Ireland, my friend of 30 years.”

Ireland also has a statement that read, “It’s both an honor and a privilege to continue this ride with ESPN. During the course of our last deal, the Lakers, Rams and Dodgers all won titles. Obviously, we were able to mistakenly convince our bosses that we had something to do with that, so they’re letting us continue. Please, nobody tell them.”

Mason & Ireland airs weekdays from 1-4p PT on 710 ESPN in Los Angeles.

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Sports Radio News

Mike Francesa and Phil Mushnick Lock Horns Over Golf Bets

That led to a Mushnick article lambasting the “soothsayer of colossal doom”. Mushnick continued to attack Francesa and claiming his legacy was as a “self-deluded, boastful blowhard”.

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Phil Mushnick of The New York Post, is no fan of Mike Francesa. The latest bout between the two was triggered by a series of erroneous golf bets that Francesa has given out in each of the last three majors.

Francesa, on his podcast with BetRivers Network, told folks that the best bet to win the Masters was Brooks Koepka. The best bet to win the PGA Championship was Scottie Scheffler. He also said the best bet to win The U.S. Open was Cameron Smith. Neither won. Neither even made the cut.

That led to a Mushnick article lambasting the “soothsayer of colossal doom”. Mushnick continued to attack Francesa and claimed his legacy was as a “self-deluded, boastful blowhard”. 

Francesa heard about, or read, the piece and responded on Twitter, calling Mushnick “sad, pathetic” and said that Mushnick’s writings make him look “like the jealous old man that he is”.

Moments later, Francesa tweeted again, “Ask him to add up how much the horses I own have won the past two years. What a complete, obsessed fool.”

As AMNY points out, these two have rammed horns before.

Mushnick once said he had alleged tapes of Francesa and Chris “Mad Dog” Russo demanding loyalty oaths from Jews after 9/11.

The writer would also accuse Francesa of fighting with his then-boss Mark Chernoff, after losing to ESPN New York’s Michael Kay in ratings, an accusation Francesa denies.

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