— VOTTO’S MODEL: TED WILLIAMS. Cincinnati Enquirer columnist Paul Daugherty has a great piece on the reverence the Reds’ star has for Williams. [Read it here] Doc writes:
Votto still tracks down people he guesses might have seen Williams play. He has read everything written about Teddy Ballgame. He watches the old black-and-whites of Williams employing that big stride and long, graceful swing. He reads the bible (Williams’ The Science of Hitting). “The thesis of the book was, get a good pitch to hit, be quick, make sure your swing is prepared,” Votto says. It’s everything every hitter wants to do, but few are able. Votto, it seems, is among the few.
— MIAMI FIGHTS. You’ve got to watch this little skirmish that broke out in the crowd at Saturday’s opener against Florida A&M, less because of the fight than because a public address announcement about Miami academics starts playing while it is going on. Thanks to TheWizofOdds.com — consistently the best roundup of college football coverage in the nation — for this.
— MALCOLM MORAN RECALLS INTERVIEW WITH THE BEAR. Moran has moved from USA Today into academia, but takes time to remember an interview he did with Bear Bryant 31 years ago today. [Read it here from The New York Times]
Bryant could not have been more kind. He was 66. The lines on his face were more pronounced than the ones you would see on television. He was gracious. He volunteered stories, all the way back to his childhood. He laughed. He took the conversation in different directions that seemed to be instructive, or enlightening, or fun.But there was this other problem.
I had no idea what he was saying.
— ESPN SLOWING SPREAD INTO LOCAL MARKETS? ESPN.com charged into Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas and other cities with local web sites, and the assumption was that the self-proclaimed “Worldwide Leader” would begin trying to pick off markets one-by-one by taking its brand into cities and establishing web sites, combined with its usual national coverage. Now comes a report from the L.A. Times’ James Rainey that the move to go local may be losing steam. He also examines the difficulties of dropping into local markets for ESPN, which drew criticism for essentially bullying everybody in town — right down to the participating coaches and teams — during a recent broadcast of a high school game between Grant and Folsom in California. Read about that dust-up from SportsbyBrooks here. [And here’s the L.A. Times piece]