Sunoco Debuts "Essence Of Racing" Campaign Executive Transactions Isiah Thomas Expected Backlash Over Hiring FanDuel Brings On Most Of Zynga Sports Team Georgia Approves Increased Athletic Budget Kentucky Adding Ribbon Boards At Rupp IndyCar Ponders How To Attract Fans Long Term Jeff Gordon Hired As Full-Time Analyst For Fox Danica's Sponsorship Status To Be Telling For NASCAR Classified Advertisements
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DR. FRANK JOBE, who "made what many consider the most extraordinary medical advance in baseball history" in the summer of '74 with the invention of Tommy John surgery, died Thursday in Santa Monica at the age of 88, according to Valerie J. Nelson of the L.A. TIMES. Jobe "saved hundreds of pitching careers by performing the surgery." DR. JAMES ANDREWS, "a Jobe protégé widely credited with perfecting the Tommy John surgery, has repeatedly called Jobe a founding father of sports medicine who brought treatment for baseball players out of the Dark Ages." Late Angels team physician LEWIS YOCUM in '99 said of Jobe, "The impact he's had on the game can't be measured." The Baseball HOF "honored Jobe last summer" (L.A. TIMES, 3/7). Former Dodgers P TOMMY JOHN, for whom the surgery was named, tweeted, “Today I lost a GREAT friend." The AP's Beth Harris noted the initial surgery and the relationship between John and Jobe last year was the "subject of an ESPN documentary." Jobe had "served the Dodgers’ organization for 50 years, most recently as special adviser to the chairman" (AP, 3/6). SportsNet LA analyst and former MLBer OREL HERSHISER tweeted, "Dr. Jobe may have touched more wins and saves than anyone in baseball. (Jobe) performed and trained countless surgeries and surgeons!” In California, Bill Plunkett notes Jobe "saved Hershiser’s career" in '90 when he "developed a new procedure to reconstruct a damaged rotator cuff." Hershiser "returned to pitch another 10 seasons" (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 3/7).
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Fox Deportes named N.Y.-based WNJU-Telemundo President & GM CARLOS SANCHEZ Exec VP & GM. He will report to Fox Sports Regional Networks President JEFF KROLIK (Fox)....The IndyCar Series named former Panther Racing exec MIKE KITCHEL Dir of Communications (INDYSTAR.com, 3/6)....Under Armour promoted DAVE DOMBROW to VP & Creative Dir of Footwear and JOSH RATTET to VP/Team Sports & Footwear (UA)....Summit Golf Brands named Vineyard Vines Dir of Men's Merchandising PATRICK KIELY Senior VP/Sales for its Fairway & Greene, Zero Restriction and B. Draddy lines. The company also named longtime golf apparel exec SANDY MARTINELLI Senior VP/Sales & Operations for EP Pro and EP Sport. Martinelli previously held the same position for EP Pro (Summit Brands)....Motor Racing Network named Aflac National Accounts & Strategic Sales Manager CHRIS MCKEE Dir of Business Development (MRN)....UNC-Greensboro AD KIM RECORD agreed to a "three-year contract extension that runs through June 30, 2017." The contract "bumps her annual salary up $5,000 to $190,000" (Greensboro NEWS & RECORD, 3/7).
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Univ. of Missouri football coach GARY PINKEL has agreed to a new contract that "will pay him a guaranteed salary" of $3.1M through '20. Pinkel's previous contract paid him $2.8M through the '17 season, and his guaranteed compensation "will increase by $100,000." But the "real winners under Pinkel's new deal are his assistant coaches." Their "salary pool increases" from $2.66M to $3.2M (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 3/7). With Pinkel's raise, at least "11 of the 14 coaches in the SEC" will make $3M or more next season (ESPN.com, 3/6).
DAN IN REAL LIFE: Sports writer DAN JENKINS this week released "HIS OWNSELF: A SEMI-MEMOIR." Jenkins "discusses his upbringing, as well as his love for golf and reading." It is "chock full of stories." Jenkins on Thursday told CBS Sports Radio's JOHN FEINSTEIN, "I just tried to tell them some things about the BEN HOGAN I knew that they didn’t know and the DARRELL ROYAL I knew and the BEAR BRYANT I knew and that sort of thing" (CBSSPORTS.com, 3/6).
AWARDS & HONORS: CBS' VERNE LUNDQUIST on May 8 "will received the Vin Scully Award for lifetime achievement in sports broadcasting" (AP, 3/6)....Chicago broadcaster JEANNIE MORRIS will receive the Ring Lardner Award for her "groundbreaking body of work." She is the "first female winner of a Ring Lardner Award honoring mostly local sportscasters and writers" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 3/7)....Former NHLer DOMINIK HASEK on March 29 "will be inducted" into the Sabres HOF (BUFFALO NEWS, 3/7).
ON THE BIG SCREEN: A film on '09 Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird, titled "50 TO 1," will launch in "more than 20 Kentucky theaters on April 18" (Louisville COURIER-JOURNAL, 3/6)....UFC fighter CAIN VELASQUEZ has "rounded out the cast of Universal's 'TERM LIFE' starring VINCE VAUGHN and HAILEE STEINFELD (VARIETY.com, 3/6)....The biopic titled "TURK," about the life of former NHLer DEREK SANDERSON, "will be shot in Canada" (BOSTON HERALD, 3/7).
NAMES: Former Dolphins trainer KEVIN O'NEILL, who was "fired last month," has hired law firm Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley to "represent him in what could turn out to be a heated wrongful termination lawsuit" (PALMBEACHPOST.com, 3/6)....Former NFLer and Wake Forest Univ. alum BOB MCCREARY donated $7.5M to the school to “support the Wake Forest football program and a planned 95,000-square-foot sports performance center” (JOURNALNOW.com, 3/5)....Former MLBer MARIANO RIVERA and his wife, CLARA, have opened a church in New Rochelle, N.Y., called Refugio de Esperanza, which translates to Refuge of Hope. It is a “calling he has devoted years of his life and millions of his dollars to” (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 3/7)....Rays manager JOE MADDON, coaches, players and front office staff prior to March 16’s Spring Training game will “shave their heads to pay tribute to children fighting cancer.” Fans can “join in as well, and all proceeds benefit the Pediatric Cancer Foundation’s Cut for A Cure" (TAMPABAY.com, 3/6)....NFL Giants QB ELI MANNING was spotted taking "center stage with the band, BETTER THAN EZRA, in New Orleans during a Mardi Gras celebration.” Manning “sang along for one verse, wisely, of their song ‘This Time of Year’” (NYDAILYNEWS.com, 3/6).
PAYING RESPECTS: The funeral service on Wednesday for DAVID REINSDORF “was jam-packed.” David is the son of Bulls and White Sox Chair JERRY REINSDORF and his wife, MARTYL. The service was held at the Chicago Jewish Funerals Chapel in Buffalo Grove, Ill. Those in attendance included Basketball HOFer SCOTTIE PIPPEN, former NBAer BOB LOVE and Hyatt Hotel heir MATT PRITZKER (SUN-TIMES.com, 3/6).