Jemele, your "Brat" Favre column has truly been vindicated. I agreed with every word of it then, and after all that's happened this offseason I ask: what is the difference between Brett Favre and Terrell Owens? Why is Favre still getting somewhat sympathetic coverage when he has done everything Owens did and then some?
Oh, wait, allow a brief introduction before getting to Paul's very astute observation. Hi all. Happy to be here. Breaking news: Brett Favre has cracked the genetic code.
Now, on to Paul's question/observation: Yes, I was absolutely right about Favre. He's spoiled, selfish and self-absorbed. For some reason, it's tolerated in Brett Favre, but Chad Johnson and Terrell Owens are public enemies. Favre is as much of a media hussy as T.O. I will say, in fairness, the Packers really screwed up the situation. It should never have gotten to this point.
Do you think that the Packers made the right descision to let Brett Farve go to the Jets?
No. The right decision would have been to let him play. He was coming off a great year. He's better right now than Aaron Rodgers. This same team was within one win of the Super Bowl. Why not play him again? I get that they were bitter with his indecisiveness, but the goal of an organization is to win games. Not get caught up in pissing matches.
What column is Paul referring to? I check the site daily and didn't notice it, but if you wrote it you're my new hero. Why does everyone else give him a free pass?
Paul is referring to this masterpiece: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=hill/070516&sportCat=nfl
Do you think Brett will check out McDowell's restaruant before august 20?
Absolutely. And he will book Sexual Chocolate to play at his first big time NYC party.
Can you bail me out?
No, but I can give you a bit of advice: Don't drop the soap.
Can we please make the chat Farve free, several people (including myself) are tired of hearing about him.
I've got no control of that. Throw something out there, because right now, everything in the que is Favre or Packer related.
Brett Farve before has never been selfish or has never been full of himself, but after this whole incident that has lasted half a year, he's basically become the laughing stock of the country, how do you thin khis wife and his family is taking this?
His family seems to encourage it. Before we even heard from Favre, we heard from Favre's momma, his brother, etc. I shocked one of his kids didn't hold a press conference. Reportedly, they're the ones who pushed him to return. Well, they got their wish.
So between the ongoing saga of Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, the looming implosion of the Pistons, the underachieving Tigers and the continuous disaster known as the Detroit Lions (not to mention that Mich State isn't on the short list of teams going to the Final Four and Michigan football is rebuilding) is the entire city of Detroit on suicide watch?
Sorry, it's hard for me to type with my wrists gushing
Think they get two years out of Farve? (I asked just for Chuck)
Depends. If they don't make the playoffs this year -- and I don't think they will -- I think Favre's gone.
Do you think Atlanta has any kind of shot at making the wild card? And do you think they will be a good/decent team in 2-4 years once they have gotten past the Vick incident?
Zero shot for Atlanta. Whatever QB they settle on will get baptized. Offensive line is nothing to write home about. You got an aging Joe Horn on the outside. I just don't see it. They're about two years away.
Will the Lions wil a Super Bowl in my lifetime, I'm 26. Hell, will they ever even finish over .500 again?
They'll be .500 in 2026. If it's true the end of the world is happening in 2012, well, let's just say that doesn't do the Lions any favors, either.
I don't think there's any way the Jets make the playoffs this year. There are at least 6 teams better in the AFC. This seems more like a marketing or PR move to me. The ownership/ management felt like they had to do something to appease the fans. What do you think?
Favre is a definite upgrade over Clemens and Pennington, but Favre had a better offense and defense in GB. Favre was the best QB in his division, and now he's a distant second in his new division and not even top-5 in the conference overall. The Jets play the Chargers and the Patriots in two of their first three. I see this team finishing .500.
Have you ever been benched in favor of another writer for not hustling?
Well, there was this one time I totally ignored the placement of a comma. They just don't pay me enough for commas. If they want commas, they need to redo my contract. Next question please!
Isn't the fact that Favre was traded the Jets proof enough the Madden Curse is real?
AB-SO-LUTELY. If I'm a player and the Madden people come looking for me, I start frothing at the mouth and trying to bite my face. That curse is legit.
when are they gonna put u on Around The Horn?
You know, I've been wondering that myself. I see they put my man Israel, Geno and Jean-Jacque from Dallas on there. I'm starting to feel left out. What does a sista have to do to get some ATH love?
Who are your top 5 QB's in the AFC?
In no specific order, Brady, Manning, Palmer, Roethlisberger, and David Garrard. Yeah, I really said it.
They should try putting Osama Bin Laden on the cover of Madden, might catch him shortly after.
I'm so sick of Farve - I watched There's Something About Mary on cable last week, and I couldn't have been more happy when Cameron Diaz dumps Brett for Ben Stiller.
And how stiff was Fav-ray in that movie? "You know I'll always be true to you Mary." Based on the Favre we know, he had another babe waiting outside!
Why do teams still conduct postgame interviews in the locker rooms? Why not just let the players shower and change then do the interviews in another room? Teams can make it manditory so players don't skip out.
Time. Realize, sometimes reporters only have 20-30 minutes to file a story once the game is over. Players and coaches don't exactly want to hurry up so that you can make your deadline. At the pro level, they give the players a 10-15 minute cool-down period, and the media is allowed in to interview players. Besides, any time you leave the team is in control of the access, they're always going to opt to give you less. And making it mandatory, will only help so much.
If they put Joey Harrington on the cover of Madden would he turn into a pro bowl QB. It would be the bizaro Madden curse.
Like, if they put Keanu Reeves on the cover, maybe he could act? I like it.
Jemele, what is the proper attire for a reporter at a game? I am not just speaking about women, but men as well. Should it be conservative, or should the fact they are reporting about a game allow a bit more latitude in outfit?
Comfortable and neat is always good. And sometimes, it depends on the magnitude of the game. For example, most of the reporters covering the NBA Finals were business casual. It's the same way at the Super Bowl and playoff games. It's tougher on women because, no matter what we wear, we'll always be scrutinized.
Rank the 4 NFC East teams...
1. Giants 2. Cowboys 3. Redskins 4. Eagles
Hey, come on, Keanu was brilliant in Point Break
Like George Clooney, he loves to act with his chin. Keanu has the most dumb looks I've ever seen on any human being.
Jemele I was out sick yesterday and caught you on First Take. You are looking good my sista. Can I take you out for Starbucks or something?
That's all I'm worth, a latte? C'mon man!
Are male reporters allowed in female locker rooms after games?
Yes, in the WNBA. At the college level, it's closed to both sexes.
How much access does a reporter really have in the locker room? I mean, players are allowed to not give interviews right? If not, I think they should be. No offense to journalists, but I see no reason why a player should be required to give interviews.
The only time guys are required to talk is in the post season. Besides, as a fan, don't you want a comprehensive story? Don't you want insight into what players are thinking? Don't you like to read stories and find out information you wouldn't know? You get that info through ACCESS. Otherwise, how do you learn about your team?
rank the 4 NFC east QB's................
1. Eli (man, I never thought I'd write that) 2. McNabb 3. Romo 4. Campbell
Jemele, just out of curiousity, when you are on set with Skip Bayless and you're off camera and you say something factual and normal like "It's hot outside today" does he immediately go into a rantabout how it's not hot and it's really cold outside and that you don't know anything about temperatures?
Um, no. Skip is very quiet and bashful off camera. I swear. He's got a good sense of humor, too.
So, if in college, the locker room is closed to both sexes, why chastise the coach for the Miami Hurricanes for his decision to close his locker room? Have you just contradicted your own column?
No, my issue with Shannon wasn't for closing the locker room. My issue was him closing the locker room and blaming women as the reason. He's very brusque with the media. He did not give a lot of interviews as a coordinator, which is rare because most coordinators are eager to talk. My beef was that he used women as a scapegoat.
Eli better than Romo and McNabb??? Gimme some of what your smokin there Jemele!
My rankings are based on production, consistency and winning. How can I rank Romo higher than Eli when he's never won a playoff game? How can I rank McNabb over Eli when he's had some disappointing, injury-plagued seasons? On pure talent, no, I wouldn't rank Eli first. But the fact is, he's now a SB winning QB.
Will the Tigers finish above .500
No. I believe they're now on a slide that's as bad as the one they had at the beginning of the season. Utterly depressing.
Jemele, you have tons of upside. I have you moving into the top 10 of my ESPN Chat Host mock draft. Check back on ESPN.com when I unveil my entire list!
Thanks, Mel. How's the hair?
With the addition of Brand..do you see Philly in the top 4 seeds come playoff time?
Absolutely. Brand was a major acquisition. That team is unbelievably athletic, and a great rebounding team. They will be a major sleeper next season.
Do you have any comments on the ombudsman's column about your Boston/Hitler story?
Our ombudsmen is terrific. I agreed with her assessments. I deserved the criticism and thought she provided a lot of great insight for people.
"He did not give a lot of interviews as a coordinator, which is rare because most coordinators are eager to talk." Wow. Would it be hard to do some research about the guy, like I don't know maybe read some of the articles on your site about him? Randy Shannon is a fiercely private man based largely upon tragic events that occurred earlier in his life.
Yes, I realize that and I read the incredible story done on him in SI. I didn't say he was wrong for how he felt. My point is that he is private and would prefer limited media access. Fine. But don't put the blame on women reporters.
was the addition of Posey enough to get the Hornets to the Finals?
It puts them right there. Unlike a lot of people, I'm hesitant to say just because the Lakers get Bynum, ink them into the Finals. That New Orleans team is a beast. But we can't forget about good, old San Antonio, either. When the Spurs are healthy, they win championships.
If The USA basketball team doesn't get gold how will that look on lebrons,carmelos, and d Wades. legacy?
It's not on any one individual's legacy. This is the legacy of American basketball at stake, period. You have top-flight superstars now considering Europe. You have more European players emerging in America. It would only signal that our dominance is over and this is no longer "our game." This is the best team that's been put together since Sydney and Atlanta, so if we don't win now, we should really never be the favorites again.
Kudos for selecting some of the tough questions that you have been answering. Most chat hosts would have avoided them in favor of set ups or softballs.
I want a good chat, and it's important people understand I'm for real. I don't run from questions. The only ones I can't post are those that are not in good taste. Sure, it's subjective, but I hope I'm fairly impartial.
Brett favre or peyton manning to start the year on my fanatasy team?
Are you serious? Manning all the way. Speaking of which, I'm in two fantasy leagues this year. Team names: Terrorist Fist Jabs, and er, the other one is the hook of Shaq's diss rap on Kobe. What do you guys think?
Thanks for clarifying, Jemele. Next question: Is there a line where a reporter/columnist/on-air personality must limit their presence in protection of the story? (I second that motion for the questions you have taken on!)
Not sure what you mean, Zo. Break it down.
Could this be the last year of the 3 headed monster in San Antonio if they don't make the finals?
Not necessarily. Remember Manu and Parker are both under 30. Tim's got some miles on him, but he's still in his prime. San An just needs to get a young, dependable playmaker. You know who I would love to see play with them? Shawn Marion.
Rank the top 5 football teams in the big ten
1. Ohio State 2. Wisconsin 3. Illinois 4. Michigan State 5. Penn State
Gladly. When ESPN had Salisbury talking about football - his personality overshadowed his commentary. Same for Stephen A. Smith. In print, sometimes its hard to get past your personality and appreciate your topic on its merit. Thats what I mean. Is it hard to balance the unique flavor of self with the integrity of the content? It seems the entertainment of ESPN creeps into the journalism a bit too often (as the ombudsman has referenced on great occasion).
OK, I get it now. Well, I think it can be difficult when you are spread across multiple ESPN platforms. You want to be taken seriously as a journalist, but entertaining is apart of the job when you're on television. But, at the end of the day, I'd like to think all of us do our best to be respected as information gatherers, first.
I found it mildly hilarious that the national media, 90% of whom never saw or heard a freestyle battle outside of 8 Mile felt the need to comment on Shaq's diss of Kobe. Most of them couldn't tell you what the hook meant if you explained it to them for a day and a half. btw, not a big fan of Terrorist Fist Jabs. It works as a team logo, not as a name.
I also thought it was funny how Shaq was reprimanded for bad language. Obviously, nobody had heard of 'Pac's Hit Em Up, which is possibly the best diss rap ever.
Chris Sheridan said that the original Dream Team had it easy, presumably because the level of competition wasn't as strong back in 92. Although I agree about the competition, I think he's slighting the team a bit. Could you see that team losing to any country at today's competition level? For that matter, how many guys from this team would even make the Dream Team?
I don't see any of the international teams today being able to beat Jordan, Magic, Malone, Barkley, etc. However, some of the scores from '92 were just absurd. I think Argentina, Spain or Greece would be able to hang in there a little bit longer, maybe even make a game of it for awhile. But I don't see them beating the original Dream Team. Case in point: Everyone on the '92 team was a Hall of Famer. Everyone on this current team, isn't. I don't know that Tayshaun, Michael Redd and Chris Bosh will be HOFers.
Per your comment on "access" being the only way fans can learn about their team. With that access comes less hard questions. I can't remember the last time I read an interview and was surprised by the questions and answers. I don't need my local sports columnist to ask a player how he felt during a game. I'm going to get the same trite answers every time. I'd rather get analytical writing from someone who cares about the team. Read a site like mgoblog and you might see what I'm talking about.
It all depends on the type of sports fan you are. Your analysis can be backed up by reporting. If you don't want the same ol' answers, maybe you should read a better columnist, or one who writes based on what you need. TrueHoop, is a great blog, but they combine their analyis with reporting. They talk to players and coaches to get their thoughts. Frankly, sometimes, we just ask bad questions and don't give readers the insight they deserve. But that's got nothing to do with access, and everything to do with being a better journalist.
Great Job Jemele, I wanted to know how can i get my wife interested into more sports and how did you get into sports and sports jounalism.
I believe sports are meant to be enjoyed in person. Let her soak up the action, and the social aspect of the game. Also, sell her on the storylines. Sometimes women aren't going to understand the X's and O's, but they understand the general themes of loyalty, selfishness, etc. There's a reason so many women are hooked on the Olympics. They love the drama and storylines. As for how I got into sports...was a huge tomboy growing up. I loved to play football, basketball and baseball. Since I considered myself an athlete, I was naturally attracted to watching sports. I was a HUGE baseball fan growing up. I would watch and listen to games all day. It's just apart of my blood.
Sorry, guys, but I've got to rap things up. I'll take one more.
"Everyone on the '92 team was a Hall of Famer." Sweet, I didn't know I was a Hall of Famer!
OK, that isn't the last question, but I sort of forgot that put Laettner on that team. My bad.
Jemele who are some of your favorite writers? Not just reporters but also some columnists?
I've got a real long list. I love blogs. Michael Tillery at The Starting Five is a great writer. Really knows how to blend song, verse and the written word. Very unusual. In the mainstream, I read Bill Simmons, Michael Wilbon, Pat Forde, and Wright Thompson. Gary Smith of SI is my favorite sports writer of all time. 1A is Ralph Wiley, who I believe is the best African-American columnist ever. I love Sally Jenkins at the Washington Post and Gwen Knapp in San Francisco. Also love Eric Adelson of ESPN the Magazine, one of the best long form writers on our site. In general, I like columnists who surprise me and make me think. I seriously could go on forever.
OK, everybody, I really enjoyed hanging out with you. Now, you've got me rethinking my names of my fantasy teams. Dangit!