TIKI BARBER’s REAL REASON TO ROOST WITH NBC: The announcement that Tiki Barber has landed a multifaceted role at NBC as both an NFL sideline guy and a “Today” show contributor came with a few surprises:
For one, he admitted during a press conference that “Today” show co-host Matt Lauer “has been my idol and someone I would love to emulate.” Not Jim Brown. Or Walter Payton. But Matt Freakin’ Lauer!
Another is that The Peacock has a backup plan if Tiki ever calls in sick. NBC News President Steve Capus said to Barber: “On those days when you’re not feeling well, we’ll just call Tampa Bay and get your (twin) brother (Ronde).”
Industry experts agree that NBC landing Barber was a “significant victory,” in the words of professor Rich Hanley, director of graduate programs in the School of Communications at Quinnipiac University. “Morning television is where entertainment and news intersect, and Barber’s broad interests suggest he will thrive within that context.”
Hanley also points out that Barber’s employment by NBC Universal keeps Disney from deploying Brand Tiki across its media plaftforms, such as ESPN and ‘Good Morning America’. As he concludes, “That’s the extra point to this signing touchdown.”
Imagine The Mouse using him to promote Disneyland’s Enchanted Tiki Room. Coulda been a natural fit.