Tuesday, January 21, 2014
The Rant Heard Around The World
A male sideline reporter might've handled it better, not been intimidated by the passion and gotten Sherman back on track. The female reporter was rattled and chose to go for the "ah ha" moment. When she asks Sherman who was talking about him it spurned him on instead of leading him to talk about his game-ending play or the game. She chose the gossip over the glory of the moment and it ended up costing her and the viewers. Careful what you ask for.
My initial feelings about Sherman's response was shock. Nowadays we are so accustomed to seeing players in control of their emotions at all times that we forget what may lie beneath the surface. Most of us didn't know the Sherman/Crabtree backstory that led to Sherman's hostile post-game rant. Sounds like its just a case of professionals acting badly. Had we known we might have been better prepared for it.
The real guilt falls on us and our expectations of sports figures as well as the media packaging of players and the game. I keep saying that football was not a family entertainment event in its beginnings. I remember when most women simply refused to watch it and wondered how guys could sit in front of a television and cheer it. They thought men barbaric back then and I'm sure many women were reminded of its barbarity with Sherman's raw rant.
Then along came ESPN and advertisers with a grand idea for marketing the game and making lots of money for all involved.
They did the old Las Vegas reinvention tip; getting rid of the world of vice image and making it fun for the whole family. Problem with the NFL holding down that family image is that so much of what goes on in the football world, unlike Vegas, is caught on tape. What happens on the field and sometimes off does not stay there. People talk, media sticks a microphone and camera in front of someone and the rest is entertainment.
Don't believe me ask Hank Williams, Jr. of Monday Night Football fame. Hank said some things that were politically incorrect to say the least. The league and media hung Hank out to dry and cut all ties in record time. The Monday Night party went on without Hank and his theme song that ushered in those games.
In the end the NFL owners, players, sports media and advertisers are bringing in bigger profits than any other sport could ever generate. And we entertainment junkies continue to buy our sports apparel, get out our popcorn, and consume hours of our favorite gladiator sport with all its trash talk and torn ligaments. So tell me, "are you ready for some football?"