Daily Dose: 9/28/17
Adidas and Nike are both getting subpoenaed
2:04 PMHef has left the building. Playboy founder Hugh Hefner died Wednesday night at the age of 91. While Hefner was best known for his men’s magazine, with its nude centerfolds and … ahem … titillating bunny costumes that helped spearhead the sexual revolution of the 1960s, he was also a champion of liberalism (abortion rights, marijuana legalization), most noteworthy a donation to black comedian Dick Gregory in 1964 to help find murdered civil rights activists James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael “Mickey” Schwerner. While Hefner will be lauded for that work, alongside helping make sexuality mainstream, he also has one glaring stain on his legacy. Since 2016, Hefner’s been involved with comedian Bill Cosby’s highly publicized sexual assault allegations, with two women accusing Cosby of raping them at the notorious Playboy Mansion, with Hefner allegedly being complicit in one of the assaults.
Nike is in some stuff now, too. The large shoe brand company has been pulled into the ongoing federal investigation of corruption in college basketball. According to ESPN and ABC News, a division of the Nike basketball department has been served with a subpoena by the FBI and U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York as federal prosecutors look into sports brand companies paying college athletic programs to steer high-profile high school basketball players to Adidas-brand schools. For a company that has been accused of running illegal sweatshops, violating child labor laws and outsourcing American jobs to poorer Asian countries, it’s doubtful that Nike did anything wrong.
Speaking of which, the jig is up for Rick Pitino. The Louisville men’s basketball coach has been identified in the federal prosecution of college programs as “Coach-2,” who according to court records, helped funnel $100,000 to the family of a recruit and spoke directly with an Adidas executive just days before said recruit committed to Louisville. Had this been Pitino’s first infraction, he’d be given the benefit of the doubt. But the 65-year-old coach was caught up in a federal extortion case in 2010 for having sex with a woman who was not his wife for, in his own words, 15 seconds, and caught up in a NCAA investigation in 2015 for overseeing a program that offered strippers and escorts to recruits. And for all that hard work, Louisville risks vacating its 2013 national championship and on Wednesday lost two ESPN top 50 commits and a top 5 recruit cut the Cardinals from his school list.
Ray-Ray tried to have it both ways. Retired former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis tried to have his cake and eat it too when he confusingly dropped on two knees rather than the customary one during the national anthem Sunday, joining 13 Baltimore players in what they called a protest of President Donald Trump’s recent comments on anthem demonstrations. He later told Showtime’s Inside the NFL that he “dropped on two knees — both knees — so I can simply honor God in the midst of chaos,” when he simply could have A) not been on the sideline for a team he doesn’t play for anymore, B) not try to make a show of “unity” about himself or C) simply not put one or two knees on the ground if he didn’t agree with players not standing for the national anthem. Playing both sides of the field has made more than 50,000 people call for the removal of Lewis’ 3-year-old statue outside M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore.
Daily Dose: 9/26/17
Kyrie Irving claims he was trolling with his ‘flat earth’ theories
3:16 PMTuesday’s another TV day, kiddos. I’ll be on Around The Horn at 5 p.m. on ESPN. Bob Ryan’s on the show today, so the likelihood of career win No. 2 is pretty low, alas.
When you're not graduating on time but still gotta take the class photo pic.twitter.com/rkdDPrxqlc
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) September 26, 2017
Donald Trump is not an NFL owner. He’s the president of the United States. He wanted to be a sports owner, but that didn’t really work out. It’s a shame, too, but he actually probably would fit right in with those guys. Alas, they don’t want him and Monday they showed him that. Now, he’s saying that he thinks the NFL should create an actual rule to prevent players from kneeling during the anthem. Seriously, Puerto Rico is about to get washed off the face of the earth, and this is where we are in the White House.
I drink a lot of milk. This is a known fact. Every time I show up in a meeting room with a quart of it, people recoil in horror as if I’m somehow doing something not considered reasonable in polite society. Anyway, milk comes from cows, and I drink it in the “whole” variety. But these days “milk” doesn’t even really mean much, outside of something being a form of dairy liquid squeezed from another product. Almond milk is surely something you’re familiar with. Cockroach milk might be less familiar to you, but that, I can live with. But pea milk? NOPE.
Kyrie Irving ain’t fooling anyone. A while back, when he said during a podcast that he believed that the Earth was flat, most people believed him. Why? Because most people aren’t in the business of lying about basic scientific facts as a way to call attention to themselves. Now, he’s claiming that he only did that as an “exploitation tactic” — whatever that means. First of all, I don’t believe this, whatsoever. But even if I did, it doesn’t change how I feel about flat-earthers, anyway.
If you paid players to play major college sports, you’d have way less controversy. But, alas, this is the world we live in, so when the FBI gets involved to tell us that a bunch of schools having been paying players for years, we’ve got to act like we’re outraged. I, for one, am not. But folks are getting arrested, including big-time people from big-time sneaker companies. Of course, if all this is true, it fundamentally changes the entire purpose of the NCAA, which is fine by me, too.
Coffee Break: Oh, and if you’re wondering why people are protesting at NFL games, look no further than Pittsburgh to explain. A fire chief in Pennsylvania posted on Facebook that Steelers coach Mike Tomlin was a “no-good n—–,” which should give you an idea of how old that guy is.
Snack Time: If you’re looking for a hockey team to root for this season, you might want to take a look at the Winnipeg Jets, who we can say at the least, are very woke.
Dessert: Mark Cuban wins the day, y’all.
Mark Cuban loaned the team plane to J.J. Barea to fly supplies to Puerto Rico. Barea will return tonight with his mother and grandmother.
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) September 26, 2017
Daily Dose: 9/25/17
Prayers for Puerto Rico
12:25 PMHappy Monday, kiddos. If you missed #TheRightTime on Friday, I explained why I feel that extending the nets at MLB ballparks will drastically affect the experience of any baseball game. Take a listen here.
NFL spokesman Joe Lockhart: "Everyone should know, including the president, that this is what real locker room talk is."
— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) September 25, 2017
President Donald Trump officially launched his beef with the NFL on Sunday. He did the usual throwing out of Twitter broadsides, and the league’s players responded much in kind. Even New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady said that Trump was doing too much. But one guy who works at the Buffalo Bills stadium was so mad about national anthem protests that he quit his ACTUAL job at the facility. That aside, let’s be careful how we use the word “unity” surrounding what the NFL is doing now, because, well, it’s not even really about that.
It’s a sad day in Nashville, Tennessee. And not because Vanderbilt got absolutely destroyed by Alabama, or because the Tennessee Titans couldn’t pull one out against the New England Patriots. A masked gunman entered a church parking lot and shot and killed someone and injured a handful of others inside the church. Obviously, this could have been a much bigger tragedy, but thankfully a church usher stepped in to confront the gunman. It’s not yet clear what the motivation for the shooting might have been; there will be a civil rights investigation.
Puerto Rico is part of the United States. In case you weren’t aware of that. Because some people aren’t. The island territory that’s brought so much to the culture, from music to sports to fashion, etc., is so completely devastated from Hurricane Maria that it’s starting over from scratch. Their crops have been completely banged out, the place is nearly unrecognizable, and now they’re worried about the status of a dam, whose failure is apparently imminent.
Everybody loves Darren Sproles. The little man who managed to make it in the NFL for so long after being a star at Kansas State was such a genuinely great story in terms of his success in hanging around the league. But on Sunday he was dealt a blow that will basically end his career, which is awful. The Philadelphia Eagles running back broke his arm and tore his ACL on the same play, ending his season. He was within earshot of 20,000 career all-purpose yards. Sad.
Coffee Break: Baseball has a long season, so you’ve got to run a lot of short-range bits to keep yourself entertained when you’re on the road. You can mark down “Blue Jays players wearing Blue Jays players Snuggies” as an instant classic.
— BallHer (@BaseballHer) September 24, 2017
Snack Time: Offset has been doing a whole lot in the past year, and that doesn’t even include Cardi B. But, since you need it, here’s a list of his best guest verses of the year.
Dessert: Never forget the Little Rock Nine.
Daily Dose: 9/22/17
Sammy Watkins sides with Kyrie Irving on flat-Earth theory
2:45 PMSo my plan to get the most appearances without a win on Around The Horn backfired worked, yay. On Friday, I’ll be on Outside The Lines at 1 p.m. on ESPN and hosting #TheRightTime on ESPN Radio from 4-7 p.m. EST. What a week.
daily mood pic.twitter.com/FtTqT80jNL
— Master Tesfatsion (@MasterTes) September 21, 2017
Have you ever had crazy neighbors? You know, a couple of guys on the block who just can’t stop upping the ante on whatever nonsense feud they have? Right now, that’s President Donald Trump and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un. After Trump lobbed a couple of threats their way in front of the United Nations, Kim has clapped back, saying that the U.S. will pay for said antics. Nothing like nuclear escalation to get the weekend started. Kim also called Trump a “dotard,” which I guarantee is a word you didn’t know on Thursday.
Your boy tweets a lot. Like, to the tune of over 100,000. Why? Because sometimes I don’t want to actually talk to the people around me about things, but do want to know what the world thinks. I got more local stuff to talk about with my people. But for each person, what the site means to them is a different thing. For some, it’s just a fun distraction. For others, it’s a way of life. But me, for example, I try not to tweet on Saturdays. Now, apparently, scientists can predict when you’ll die based on how much you tweet. Awesome.
Infidelity is a tricky subject. On the surface, how people feel about the notion of monogamy is one steeped in all sorts of social, religious and patriarchal shame. But, beneath that, because of what we’ll call polite society, plenty of people cheat and just get on with their lives. Whatever you may think of this is on you, but there’s a very real slice of society who believes that cheating is better than breaking up and causing other problems within your life. Sex is power, after all. Anyway, apparently women are cheating more than ever, to which I say: good for them.
Since this apparently needs reiterating, I’ll say it: The Earth is not flat. It’s 2017, and even though we’ve got people of all sorts who don’t believe science in various capacities, to think that we’re walking around with folks thinking that if you go too far you can just fall off into space is ridiculous. Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving has exposed himself as an idiot on this front, and now Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Sammy Watkins has joined the club. This never ceases to amaze me.
Coffee Break: When I was in high school, there were people who drank Perrier and people who drank Pellegrino. Now, Starbucks is set to start its own drink rivalry. There are people who drink pumpkin spice lattes — many of them, at that. Now, get ready for the maple pecan latte.
Snack Time: As an absolute fan of radio, I’ve always tried to share stories about the industry that make me smile. More often than not though, it’s the opposite. But this local London station is one of the best on earth. Legit.
Dessert: Read this story about a New York jewelry store with a hip-hop following. Perfect start to the weekend.