Archive for January, 2013

Silverbacks’ sale takes another step

Parties who have expressed an interest in purchasing the Atlanta Silverbacks will meet with officials of the North American Soccer League on Tuesday in Atlanta.

Traffic Sports USA put up for sale its 65 percent stake in the team late last year. Boris Jerkunica, an Atlanta businessman and the team’s chairman, owns 28 percent, as well as the Silverbacks Stadium and surrounding complex, which is located next to Spaghetti Junction where I-285 and I-85 cross on the north side of the city. John Latham owns the remaining seven percent.

Six parties expressed an interest in buying the team.

None of the parties involved in the sale will disclose the price, but did say it would equivalent to a minor-league baseball team. The team was placed for sale because the U.S. Soccer Federation would like Traffic Sports USA to divest itself of teams to maintain competitive balance in the NASL.

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ESPN: Notre Dame’s Kelly interviews with Eagles

Could the man who returned Notre Dame football to national prominence be heading to the NFL?

ESPN, citing anonymous sources, is reporting that Brian Kelly has interviewed with the Philadelphia Eagles about their vacant coaching job. And, ESPN says, both sides are interested.

Kelly met with the Eagles on Tuesday, and there was mutual interest after the interview, according to league sources. Kelly left the country after meeting with the Eagles and could not be reached for comment.

The Eagles and Kelly have agreed to revisit talks when he returns this weekend, according to league sources.

Kelly, in his third season at Notre Dame, led the Fighting Irish to a 12-0 regular season and a spot in the BCS national championship game, where they were routed by Alabama, 42-14. The Irish have not won a national championship since 1988, when Lou Holtz was their coach. They have lost at least three games in every season since 1993.

Philadelphia is looking for a replacement for coach Andy …

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ESPN apologizes for Musburger comments

Katherine Webb drew lots of attention from ESPN Monday night. (AP Photo)

Katherine Webb drew lots of attention from ESPN Monday night. (AP Photo)

ESPN has issued an apology for Brent Musburger’s comments on Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron’s girlfriend during Monday night’s BCS championship game.

Late in the first quarter of the game — a 42-14 Alabama blowout — ESPN’s cameras began to focus on Katherine Webb, the 2012 Miss Alabama USA, who was sitting with McCarron’s mother.

“You quarterbacks,” Musburger said to color man Kirk Herbstreit, a former Ohio State QB, “you get all the good-looking women. What a beautiful woman.”

“Wow!” analyst Kirk Herbstreit chimed in.

“If you’re a youngster in Alabama, start getting the football out and throw it around the backyard with Pop,” Musburger added.

ESPN’s Mike Soltys apologized on Twitter.

“We always try to capture interesting storylines and the relationship between an Auburn grad who is Miss Alabama and the current Alabama quarterback certainly met that test,” Soltys tweeted. “However, we …

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ESPN not renewing Rob Parker’s contract

Comments about Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III’s “blackness” have cost commentator Rob Parker his job, ESPN announced Tuesday.

The network said it will not renew its contract with Parker, who was suspended last month for his remarks on “First Take.” During a Dec. 13 episode, Parker pointed out that Griffin is engaged to a white woman and is rumored to be a Republican.

“Is he a brother or a cornball brother?” Parker said.

On Dec. 19, Parker released an apology on his Twitter account, @RobParkerESPN.

“I blew it and I’m sincerely sorry,” Parker wrote. “Robert Griffin III is a talented athlete who not only can do great things on the field, but off the field handles himself in a way we’re all taught – with dignity, respect and pride.”

The following day, ESPN announced Parker was suspended for 30 days. Parker’s contract expired at the end of the year.

“Evaluating our needs and his work, including his recent RG III comments, we decided not to renew his deal,” an ESPN …

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Kennesaw State football decision deferred

Kennesaw State’s quest for football may have to wait for at least one more month.

Kennesaw State asked the State Board of Regents at today’s meeting to approve an increase in student fees of $100 per semester to support a new football team and other Title IX efforts.

However, a Regents’ subcommittee recommended earlier today that the plan receive further study. The Regents are scheduled to meet later today and could decide to go ahead and review the plan, or follow the committee’s recommendation. Ken Bernard, who chairs the finance committee, referred questions to Regents spokesman John Millsaps. It is not uncommon for proposals to receive further scrutiny before reaching the Regents. KSU President Dan Papp said that his university will work with the Regents, but declined to answer any other questions.

Kennesaw State’s proposed increase would bring the total earmarked to athletics to $251 per semester. Multiplied by the university enrollment of more than 24,000, the …

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AJ McCarron’s girlfriend steals BCS spotlight

While Alabama’s quarterback threw for 254 yards and 4 touchdowns in the national championship game, it was his prowess off the field that caught the attention of ESPN play-by-play announcer Brent Musburger.

Cameras spotted AJ McCarron’s girlfriend, Katherine Webb, in the stands and Musburger, 73, suddenly became smitten.

“You quarterbacks, you get all the good-looking women,” Musburger said. “What a beautiful woman.”

“Wow!” analyst Kirk Herbstreit chimed in.

“If you’re a youngster in Alabama, start getting the football out and throw it around the backyard with Pop,” Musberger added.

Webb, who also happens to be Miss Alabama and a student at Auburn, became a sudden Twitter sensation going from about 530 followers to more than 90,000 followers before Alabama scored its 42nd point.

Among @_KatherineWebb new followers was Arizona Cardinals defensive linemen Darnell Docket, who tweeted his phone number to her.

This morning, Docket sent a tweet that included an image of Webb, …

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Twitter posts about Julio Jones not true

If you follow the Twitter rumors, Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones broke both of his legs in September when he hit was by a little old lady who ran a red light.

Then it supposedly happened again Monday.

And according to the rumors, the same thing has happened to Michael Vick, Ben Roethlisberger and Arian Foster. Folks, don’t believe everything you read online.

We’re not even going to link to the bogus story floating around on social media. It’s simply not true.

When the Falcons host the Seahawks on Sunday at the Georgia Dome, Jones will be there. And chances are good he won’t be wearing two casts.

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ESPN commentator: Seahawks, Redskins better than Falcons

The Falcons had the best record in the NFC this season, but an ESPN commentator sees at least two other teams better than them in the conference playoffs.

Michael Wilbon discussed the Redskins-Seahawks game on ESPN 980 this week and said he felt both teams were better than the Falcons.

The Falcons routed the Giants a week after a national analyst said New York was a better team.

The Falcons routed the Giants a week after a national analyst said New York was a better team.

“I think the winner will beat Atlanta. I think the winner’s a better team than Atlanta. I would never use the word upset. I think the Redskins are better than Atlanta, and I think Seattle’s better than Atlanta.”

The Falcons beat the Redskins 24-17 on October 7. Atlanta is 13-3, Seattle is 11-5 and Washington is 10-6.

Wilbon’s comments continue a trend.

On Dec. 9, NBC analyst Rodney Harrison said, “Atlanta is the No. 1 seed, but no one is afraid to play Atlanta,” Harrison said. “To me, the team to beat in the NFC is the New York Giants.”

A week later, Atlanta routed the Giants …

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Chipper Jones rips Gators after upset

One of the Florida Gators’ best-known fans is ripping into the team after its stunning 33-23 loss to Louisville in the Sugar Bowl Wednesday night.

Chipper Jones took to Twitter to express the frustration that many Gator fans are feeling after watching Florida fall behind 24-3 in the first half and 33-10 in the second half before falling 10 points short in a late comeback attempt.

“Never seen a more undisciplined football team in my life. As a life long UF fan, that was embarrassing,” Jones wrote Thursday.

And then: “I can handle getting beat, but to show ur [fannies] in front of the whole country? Sure hope the inmates ain’t running the asylum down there!”

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Report: Ray Lewis to join ESPN

Ray Lewis is a 13-time Pro Bowl linebacker. (AP photo)

Ray Lewis is a 12-time Pro Bowl linebacker. (AP photo)

It didn’t take Ray Lewis long to find a new job. is reporting that the veteran Ravens linebacker, who announced this week that he will retire after this year’s playoffs, will join ESPN.

Multiple sources told the Ravens linebacker is close to signing a multi-year contract with the network. At ESPN, Lewis is expected to have a significant role on the network’s Monday Night Countdown program. As with most ESPN NFL talent, Lewis would also be featured on multiple platforms, including ESPN Radio.

No formal announcement from Lewis or the network is expected until the conclusion of the Ravens season. Lewis announced Wednesday that he planned to retire at the end of Baltimore’s season. The Ravens host the Colts on Sunday in the AFC WIld Card round.

An ESPN spokesperson declined comment when contacted Thursday morning.

Lewis, 37, is a 13-time Pro Bowl linebacker who has played 17 seasons in the NFL, all of them with …

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