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SBD/November 11, 2011/Media
CNN Praised For "Superior Job" To ESPN In Covering Penn State Scandal
Published November 11, 2011
MUST-SEE TV: USA TODAY’s Michael McCarthy writes ESPN’s coverage of the Nebraska-Penn State game on Saturday “will probably draw a BCS bowl-sized audience,” as the telecast could become “a combination soap opera, news media circus and morality play.” ESPN analyst Urban Meyer, “speculated to be a potential successor to Paterno, will call the game along with Dave Pasch, Chris Spielman and Tom Rinaldi” (USA TODAY, 11/11). In N.Y., Bob Raismann notes Pasch “took the extra step of reaching out, calling other broadcasters for advice and counsel,” such as NBC’s Bob Costas and ESPN’s Mike Tirico, Sean McDonough and Brad Nessler. Pasch said, “I’m trying to be real sensitive to the viewer and the listener (while) just not knowing who’s listening. It could be anyone, perhaps a family member, or the alleged victim himself. I just want to be mindful of that. I want to choose my words carefully.” The presence of Meyer in the booth is “complicating matters, perhaps making the telecast even more intriguing.” With Meyer “prominently mentioned as a possible successor to Paterno,” Pasch "will likely pop that question" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 11/11). The Chicago Tribune’s Phil Rogers said, “Penn State ratings just got a big bump though. I mean, this is the world we live in, they’ve got all this attention. People like me, I wasn’t following Penn State. Now I’m going to pay attention” (“Chicago Tribune Live,” Comcast SportsNet Chicago, 11/10).
WRONG FOCUS? Comcast SportsNet’s Al Koken said, “If you only get your news from ESPN or Comcast SportsNet or whomever, if you happen to just glance over to CNN, who’s covering it as well, no one ever mentions the educational angle of it. You’d think Joe Pa was the president of the university … and that also becomes the ultimate part of this problem, that he’s the only part of this story, where the university president is irrelevant. And what does that tell you about the sway and the control of this football program?” (“Washington Post Live,” Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, 11/10).