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Mike Florio Details Fights With NFL, Coaches

“Florio said that since Pro Football Talk partnered with NBC, his bosses have never told him what he can and cannot write. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t hear complaints from the outside.”

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Pro Football Talk has become one of the must-read sites for football fans. Mike Florio started the site in 2001 and has never been shy about sharing his opinions. In a recent interview with Awful Announcing, he explained that sometimes the people he writes about let him know how they feel about those opinions.

During an interview to promote Florio’s new book Playmakers, writer Michael Grant asked Florio how often he hears directly from the NFL office when they object to an opinion. Florio said that since Pro Football Talk partnered with NBC, his bosses have never told him what he can and cannot write. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t hear complaints from the outside.

“It happens,” he said. “Sometimes I go into a story knowing that it’s going to happen. Sometimes I go into a story expecting it to happen and it doesn’t happen. Sometimes it’s something that I didn’t think anybody was going to care about at all. It blows up and I have to get on the phone with someone from the league or talk to someone from NBC.”

When asked to describe his most memorable conflict with the NFL, Mike Florio pointed to the tryout the league set up for Colin Kaepernick in 2019. Florio says that he had some strong opinions about the language the league put in a release lawyers wanted Kaepernick to sign.

“The two sides got into a back and forth and the whole thing fell apart. I was expressing some pretty strong opinions about that. The league office didn’t like it, but they didn’t say anything (at first) They let it fester. It eventually erupted on a Friday afternoon. The next thing I knew I was on a conference call trying to help everyone understand.”

Mike Florio also talked about his most intense run in with a coach. That came when Dirk Koetter waited months to confront Florio about a question Florio asked him on NBC Sports Radio’s Pro Football Talk Live.

Koetter had just been named the new head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, replacing Lovie Smith. There was some speculation that Koetter had been interviewed for another head coaching job and used the prospect of leaving the team and quarterback Jameis Winston as a bargaining chip for the promotion.

Florio says he asked Koetter about that rumor. The coach gave an answer that he described as “very fair and rational” and he did not think anything of it again until he was confronted by the coach months later at the league meetings.

“I’d never met Dirk Koetter, and I walked up to say hi to him. He chewed (me out) for 10 or 15 minutes. I tried to explain to him how this works. He didn’t want to hear it. It was awkward. At the time I felt bad. But the more I thought about it, the more I got upset because if you have a problem with what I said, don’t wait until you have a chance to jump me. Especially since my wife was with me.”

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Media Reacts To Nick Saban’s Comments On Texas A&M, Jackson State

“Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.”

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Nick Saban had some choice words about recruiting in the NIL era on Wednesday night. The Alabama head coach didn’t just voice frustrations with the process. He called out three schools specifically for using Name, Image and Likeness payments to create an advantage for themselves in recruiting.

He said that Texas A&M, which signed the top-ranked recruiting class in 2022 according to a number of outlets “bought every player on their team.”

He said that Jackson State gave a player $1 million to come to the school. “It was in the paper,” he said. “They bragged about it! Nobody did anything about it.”

It is likely that he was talking about defensive back Travis Hunter, widely regarded as one of the five best players in the class of 2022. It should be noted that Jackson State Coach Deion Sanders has been adamant that Hunter did not receive a dime from the school or anyone else.

The comments created plenty of content on sports radio on Thursday.

Jimbo Fischer, the head coach of Texas A&M took the story to a new level with a press conference of his own in which he cryptically encouraged people to “dig into” Saban’s career history.

The commentary in the sports media came in all kinds of forms. Plenty took to Twitter to express an opinion.

Others used the feud to create comedy.

Finally, others did actual reporting. they made phone calls to get context and further the story.

The coaches may be relatively quiet in public for a while. That doesn’t mean the stories and reactions are going away. Saban’s comments and the ensuing rebuttals will be used to fuel content on sports television and radio through the offseason and likely beyond.

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Bleav Announces Partnership With SiriusXM

“The Bleav podcasts come with some serious star power. Each show features a former player paired with a host to discuss the latest news about their team. In adding Bleav, SiriusXM adds the likes of Eric Davis, Lorenzo Neal, Adam “Pac Man” Jones and others to its roster.”

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A new partnership will see content from the Bleav Podcast Network come under the SiriusXM umbrella. All 32 of the network’s NFL team-specific podcasts will now be available on the SXM app. The satellite radio company will also have the ability to air Bleav content on its sports channels.

“SiriusXM is a leader in content. We’re very happy to be a part of their programming and continue to amplify the voice of our talent,” Bleav CEO Bron Heussenstamm said in a press release. “SiriusXM listeners will be able to regularly hear from athletes that played for their team, bringing fans insight and access that only a player can.”

The Bleav podcasts come with some serious star power. Each show features a former player paired with a host to discuss the latest news about their team. In adding Bleav, SiriusXM adds the likes of Eric Davis, Lorenzo Neal, Adam “Pac Man” Jones and others to its roster.

The deal will also lead to more content in the future. The companies expect to add to the Bleav content available on the SXM App, including shows focused on other professional and college sports. 

“Bleav’s team-focused programming, hosted by many former stars from the league, give fans a unique and experienced perspective into their favorite players and franchises,” said Steve Cohen, SiriusXM’s SVP of Sports Programming and Podcasts.  “Bleav’s network of shows deliver valuable insight for fans of every NFL team.  They are a great addition to the selection of sports podcasts available on the SXM App and we look forward to adding other shows, focused on other sports, from the Bleav network to SiriusXM in the future.” 

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Dave Portnoy Offers Pat Beverley ‘Blank Check’ To Join Barstool

“Just say how many zeros and guarantee us once a week, you are hired.”

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Minnesota Timberwolves player Pat Beverley turned heads with his comments about Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul after the Suns were eliminated from the NBA Playoffs.

Beverley told Mike Greenberg and Stephen A. Smith on Monday that he thinks Paul is a “traffic cone,” due to his poor defense and that on nights he knows he’s playing Paul he’ll have a nice steak dinner and wine the night before. He said he’s in bed by 8 p.m. and doesn’t want to hear from his mom or girlfriend if he’s playing Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors.

Pat’s comments got the attention of Barstool Sports president Dave Portnoy. Portnoy said Monday he liked Beverley so much that he would hire him to do a podcast for Barstool.

“If Pat Beverley is a Barstool fan and he’s watching this, he has a blank check. You name your price for a podcast, and we will hire you — no questions asked,” Portnoy said. “Just say how many zeros and guarantee us once a week, you are hired.”

Portnoy made the push to sign Beverley to a podcast deal as the company seeks to scale back the number of podcasts it produces. Barstool CEO Erika Nardini announced the decision to cut shows last week.

No word if Beverley has responded to Portnoy’s offer.

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