Names In The News
In N.Y., Sam Borden writes NFL Giants President & CEO JOHN MARA saw his team "endure a brutal collapse, missing the 2010 playoffs in such devastating fashion that it turned his stomach." He listened to fans "call for the firing of his head coach, his general manager and, occasionally, himself." He spent "long summer nights hoping there would be a 2011 NFL season, then worked long summer days during the lockout to ensure that there would be." Somewhere in the middle, he "spent four weeks on the jury in a federal drug trial that resulted in two men going to prison." Mara gave a "mock look of exasperation when he talked about the logistics of getting his entire family to the Super Bowl." He said that the "contingent is nearing 70 people ... but he does not mind." After all, it was "not that long ago that he had 'significant doubts' about the Giants playing any games at all because of the lockout." Among the relatives joining him for the game will be his niece, ROONEY MARA, who earned a best actress Academy Award nomination for her role in "THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO," and his mother, ANN, who "became an Internet sensation after scolding" Fox' TERRY BRADSHAW for "always picking against the Giants" (N.Y. TIMES, 1/27).
SUPER AGENT: USA TODAY's Jarrett Bell profiles NFL agent TOM CONDON, noting he is arguably the league's "most powerful agent, evidenced by his A-list clients," including Colts QB PEYTON MANNING, Giants QB ELI MANNING, Saints QB DREW BREES, Cowboys QB TONY ROMO, Lions QB MATTHEW STAFFORD and Falcons QB MATT RYAN. Bell notes that Condon "evolved into the agent for so many marquee quarterbacks is a bit ironic." As a player, Condon "was not among the elite and was never voted to the Pro Bowl." He began "thinking of a second career after injuring a knee in his second pro season." He went to "law school during NFL offseasons" and went on to serve as the Chiefs' player rep and then became NFLPA President. After he "retired from football, he served as outside counsel for the NFLPA." Condon joined CAA in '06, and CAA Football now "boasts about 150 NFL players, including 14 starting quarterbacks." In the past three drafts, CAA "has represented 25 first-round picks -- more than any other agency" (USA TODAY, 1/27).
STANDING UP FOR PATERNO: In N.Y., Mark Viera notes in the "most riveting moment" of Thursday's memorial for late Penn State football coach JOE PATERNO, Nike Chair PHIL KNIGHT "lambasted Penn State's board of trustees for firing Paterno." Knight said, "Whatever the details of the investigation are, this much is clear to me: if there is a villain in this tragedy, it lies in that investigation, not in Joe Paterno." Knight's comments drew an "explosion from the crowd of about 12,000, followed by a sustained standing ovation" (N.Y. TIMES, 1/27).
NAMES: FS North and the Wild last Saturday held a telethon to raise money to support the medical needs of Minnesota high school hockey player JACK JABLONSKI, who suffered a spinal cord injury during a game last month. The day-long benefit raised more than $134,000 and was held as part of FS North's annual "Hockey Day Minnesota" (Fox)....Musical duo LMFAO will join MADONNA for the Super Bowl XLVI halftime show on Feb. 5. The group "scored a pair of Hot 100 chart-toppers last year with "PARTY ROCK ANTHEM" and "SEXY AND I KNOW IT" (BILLBOARD.com, 1/26)....U.S. snowboarder SHAUN WHITE said he is "entertaining" several film offers, but declined to give specifics. White played himself in last year's film, "FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS" (OUTTHERECOLORADO.com, 1/26)....ESPN's JEMELE HILL is teaching a class on sports business media for Univ. of Central Florida's sports management program this semester (CENTRALFLORIDAFUTURE.com, 1/25)....Patriots QB TOM BRADY made an appearance at the Seaport Hotel in Boston Thursday to “promote next summer’s Best Buddies Challenge: Hyannis Port, the walk, run, and cycle benefiting Best Buddies” (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/27)....Former Dolphins coach DON SHULA opened his first Shula Burger restaurant last month in the Florida Keys (MIAMI HERALD, 1/26)....The Lofts at West Station on its Facebook page Wednesday announced that “a restaurant will be opened on the main floor of the building” by Virginia Tech football coach FRANK BEAMER. The restaurant will be called “Beamer’s 25” (VTEFFECT.com, 1/26)....Celtics G RAY ALLEN and his wife SHANNON had their fourth boy, WYSTAN, on Wednesday (BOSTON HERALD, 1/27).