Dan Patrick: Star Witness In Upcoming ESPN Book

The co-author of a much-anticipated book about ESPN, Jim Miller, linked this photo to his Twitter account recently and called it the book’s working cover.:

ESPN Book Cover

Reading about the documentation of the manufacturing of a sports media monolith isn’t my cup of tea. That is, unless Dan Patrick is around to talk freely about his experience at ESPN, which he did for the book. (Not a coincidence he’s top left in the photo.)

Just this week the former SportsCenter anchor’s candor when it comes to his career at ESPN - and his untimely departure - was on display in a profile on the rise of his daily Direct TV show and during the show itself.

Speaking to Eric Deggans of Indiana University’s National Sports Journalism Center, Patrick offered the following appetizers:

On October 25, Patrick’s show will become available on 25 more regional sports networks owned by Fox Sports, Comcast and MSG – a deal that marks the first time DirecTV has sold one of its original shows into the syndication.

And if this latest move with The Dan Patrick Show works out, he expects it won’t be long before he’s dealing with The Mothership once again. If you have a concept, they will eventually swallow it up and make it theirs,” he said. “I guess you’re supposed to take that as a compliment; ‘Wow ESPN stole your idea.’ I’ve already heard from some of their talent who are curious about how I pulled this off. I think they hope I succeed so they’ll have a place to land, too.”

Patrick hinted that his departure was at least partly due to his unwillingness to cede the uniqueness of his personality to ESPN’s fastidious, branding overlords:

While some at ESPN may act as if they supported the franchise which eventually helped define the network from Day One, Patrick remembers it differently. He talked of being reprimanded for acting on air as if they were bigger than the network, warned to stop calling their program “The Big Show” and instead remind viewers “This is SportsCenter.”

(They wound up saying the phrase in such a sarcastically overblown way, it became a catchphrase in ways the executives hardly intended.)

“I remember walking out of that meeting saying ‘I’ve got three kids; I can’t get fired,’” Patrick said. “Olbermann looked over and said ‘F— ‘em.’ He gave me the guts to let me be who I was. And it should have been embraced a lot more than it was.”

So in 2007, Patrick decided to close the book on 18 years in Bristol, Conn., and move on, building a new show that broadcasts in a studio one mile from his house and allows him to be at home for dinner almost every night.

Then there was Patrick this week referring on his show to ESPN’s practice of “confirming” news broken by other main media outlets. Patrick cited ESPN’s most-recent poaching of the news of the Randy Moss trade - which was reported first by Jay Glazer of FOX Sports. Read more…

Sources: NFL Net Changes Leave Eisen “Fearful”

Today the NFL confirmed my Wednesday report that the league had hired Jay Glazer and Daryl Johnston as analysts for NFL Network studio shows.

Rich Eisen and Mark Shapiro

Additionally, the league confirmed another of my earlier reports this week - per John Ourand of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL - that it is now employing former ESPN programming chief Mark Shapiro as a “consultant” for NFL Network game broadcasts and studio shows.

The latter piece of news probably didn’t make NFL Network studio host Rich Eisen’s day. Read more…

NFL Network “Swung And Missed” At Peter King

Turns out the NFL is far from satisfied in allowing NFL Network to be a fringe media player.

NFL Network Tried To Hire Peter King

Earlier today I confirmed that Jay Glazer of Fox Sports was joining NFL Network. I’ve since been informed that the NFL also approached Sports Illustrated’s Peter King about joining the network, but was turned down. (”Swung and missed” was how it was described to me.)

Perhaps even more significant is who the NFL Network has turned to for programming advice. Read more…

Jay Glazer, Daryl Johnston Joining NFL Network

Early Wednesday John Ourand of SportsBusiness Journal reported on Twitter, “I’m hearing that NFL Network hired Fox’s Jay Glazer and Daryl Johnston for their studio show. Both will stay on Fox, too

Jay Glazer

After Ourand’s Tweet, Glazer confirmed to me that he has indeed joined NFL Network as an on-air contributor while keeping his current duties at Fox.

Glazer explained via text that he’d be appearing on NFL Network, “periodically during the season, though it’ll be sporadic. Fox is still my main gig and focus. I’ll be doing more with them (NFL Network) in the offseason.” Read more…

Jay Glazer: We Fear What We Don’t Understand

Recently Richard Sandomir, the sports media watchdog of the NEW YORK TIMES, examined the business relationship Fox NFL reporter Jay Glazer has with NFL players.

Jay Glazer

Noting that Glazer now trains NFL players in the art of MMA, Sandomir observed:

Glazer’s arrangement is unusual, at best, and raises questions about how he balances his competing interests. While some N.F.L. reporters and sportscasters cover the sport for more than one news media outlet, Glazer reports on some of the same players and teams who pay him for his training expertise.

In polling Fox, the NFL league office and NFL players and coaches, Sandomir was unable to find anyone who objected to Glazer’s arrangement.

Journalism ethics expert Bob Steele of the Poynter Institute though did raise questions about Glazer’s situation:

“You can only scrutinize what he reports. But you can’t scrutinize what he does not report, so we don’t know what he didn’t ask an athlete. He might be making legitimate journalistic choices, but you can’t tell because you can’t see beneath the surface.”

That’s as deep as the criticism went of Glazer in the New York Times piece.

Though in a recent blog post on his personal website, successful author and former Sports Illustrated reporter Jeff Pearlman wasn’t nearly so kind.

When he’s not reporting on NFL players and teams, Glazer, ahem, works for NFL players and teams. Literally. He is a mixed martial arts trainer whose clients include two franchises (the Falcons and Rams) and, apparently, dozens of players, ranging from Ryan Grant to Patrick Willis to Matt Leinart. As in, they pay him for his services.

This, journalistically, is a joke. An embarrassing, pathetic, worst-of-its-kind joke.

Read more…

Jay Glazer Gave ‘Brutal’ MMA Lesson To Stu Scott

On Feb. 4, ESPN PR guy Mac Nwulu Tweeted: “ESPN Stu Scott, fitness buff, arrived Miami for SB XLIV after 1wk MMA training under FOX Sport’s Jay Glazer. No plans to fight pro!!

Jay Glazer trained Stuart Scott in MMA

Pro or no pro, Stuart Scott and Jay Glazer in the Octagon? Is there a sports fan alive who wouldn’t fork over 49.99 to see that? (Dude, I can dream, can’t I?)

To indulge my curiousity, I called Glazer and Scott today to get the downlow, and it turns out Nwulu’s Tweet was indeed true. Glazer, who trains NFL players with MMA legend Randy Couture during the NFL offseason, told me today that he recently trained Scott for a day in Ft. Lauderdale.

Read more…

Glazer Scoops Snyder Station; Rooney Rule Doubt

UPDATE (11:17a ET): Bob Glauber of NEWSDAY has same thought I process I do on the Redskins’ abrupt announcement - via Snyder-owned ESPN 980 - of Bruce Allen’s hire:

Did Jay Glazer Scoop Cause Redskins To Break Rooney Rule?

(In zeal to control message, did scooped Snyder break hiring rule?)

“The announcement that the Redskins had replaced vice president of football operations Vinny Cerrato with former Buccaneers general manager Bruce Allen may have been a violation of the league’s expanded Rooney Rule requirements for diversity hiring practices.”

At 9:30am ET this morning Jay Glazer was first to report the possibility of Bruce Allen being hired by the Redskins as the team’s new Executive VP of Football operations - posted at FoxSports.com:

Redskins coaches were told the team is now in talks with former Bucs and Raiders head honcho Bruce Allen to replace Cerrato, FOXSports.com has learned.

It is unclear what job title Allen will be given if they lock him up, but his brother George Jr. is a big player already in Washington, D.C. Their father was legendary coach George Allen.

It’s unclear who the team interviewed to satisfy the Rooney Rule or if such an interview has taken place yet. They cannot hire Allen until a minority candidate is interviewed for the position.

What followed was a predictable response from Dan Snyder’s radio station in DC.

Read more…

Glazer: Roethlisberger Now Out For Ravens Game

Jay Glazer of FoxSports.com reports Saturday morning that the Steelers have reversed course on Ben Roethlisberger and that the Pittsburgh quarterback will not get the start tomorrow agains the Ravens.

Ben Roethlisberger

Big Ben was suffering from exercise induced headaches as the week progressed and the team’s medical staff deemed him unfit for the contest.

That means rookie Dennis Dixon, a former fifth-round pick out of Oregon, will get the call. Dixon has thrown one pass in his NFL career.

Read more…

Jay Glazer: Dick Jauron Fired By Buffalo Bills

Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports Buffalo Bills head coach Dick Jauron has been fired.

Jay Glazer Reports Dick Jauron Fired By Buffalo Bills

No interim coach has been named. Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network also reports Jauron has been discharged.

Bud Adams approves.

Please Help The Wounded Children Of Afghanistan

I spoke to Jay Glazer today about his recent trip to Afghanistan. He couldn’t say enough about how wonderful an experience it was all-around. You can view photos from Jay’s trip on his Twitter page and on his page at FoxSports.com.

Afghan Boy Without Legs Wounded In The War - Jay Glazer Photo

Jay said that the troops there asked him to ask us to send clothes, blankets and toys to the wounded Afghan children, like this poor little guy.

Troops request you please send clothes, blankets and toys to wounded Afghan children

Please send what you can to the address above. Thanks. - b