I give a lot of crap to sportscasters on Nonsportsmanlike Conduct!, because they deserve it. I mean, Mike & Mike and the rest of the ESPN crew spend so much time sucking up to everyone who's not Michael Vick that it's disgusting. And why do they do it? Because they're afraid of making one of those athletes or coaches or someone mad. They won't say anything bad about anyone, for fear that they'll be left out of the locker room when game time comes.
That's part of the problem with where sports are going: as ESPN gets bigger and bigger, it gets safer and safer, because as ESPN gets bigger and bigger, it relies more and more on the corporate sports feeding it. That's why ESPN cut that football series "Playmakers," after all: they didn't want to offend the NFL and lose the revenue the NFL provides. As the NFL Network more and more takes over, expect the problem to get worse, not better; do you think the NFL will allow someone to refer to the Patriots* coach as "Belicheat" on their network? I doubt it. You'll hear less and less honest criticism in the future, and more and more of Mike Golick trying desperately to convince people that it's not that big of a deal to steal the other team's signals.
But I do need to give credit where credit is due, and I was greatly cheered to hear Dan Patrick, this morning, tell the truth and not worry about offending anyone. Patrick was talking with a caller about what should be done to the steroids-users and suspected steroids users. The caller made a comment that they could let the all-time home run king into the Hall of Fame, but give the full story, and Patrick said:
"The all time home run champ is in the Hall of Fame -- it's Hank Aaron."
Way to go, Dan. Keep up that kind of commentary. While sports are not important enough to lose sleep over, there should be some modicum of integrity to sports reporting, and you're doing a valuable anti-ESPN service by not sucking up. And you other reporters, why are you worried about offending people who cheat, or the people who defend them?
P.S.: Re-read that headline again, reader. You don't know the answer, do you? That's what cheating gets you, Barry. Nobody cares about your fake record.