Because the news of the day (UM getting oral commitments from an offensive lineman and defensive tackle and the Heat announcing Tyler Johnson will undergo shoulder surgery that's expected to sideline him two months) were capably covered by Susan Miller Degnan and Ethan Skolnick in the UM and Heat blogs, we're posting a media column in this space tonight. Check back Tuesday for a lot of UM recruiting material.
Hassan Whiteside engages with the public on social media as much as any player in our market. And a Miami New Times article suggesting the Heat may be better without Whiteside clearly got under his skin tonight.
Here's how Whiteside responded on his verified account (I am typing this twice for those with computers unable to see the Instagram photograph below): "What is the reason to post dum shit like this? The heat change the whole offense after the Wizards game. I just happened to be hurt now. We on a run. Not our first. Not our last. Be happy we went on 3 3-0 runs while I played... Be happy to have both PGs back."
Here's specifically what irked Whiteside (we're typing this twice for those whose computers cannot see these Instagram posts):
"This might surprise you. The Miami Heat are statistically better this season without Hassan Whiteside. The Heat have 80.2 defensive rebounding percentage with Chris Bosh and Justise Winslow on the floor, which ties the best in the NBA.
"The Heat have a defensive rating (the lower, the better) of 102.0 with Whiteside on the court and a 96.5 rating with him off the court. With Whiteside on the court, Dwyane Wade scores just 20.6 points per every 36 minutes, and the Heat get outscored by 44 points. When Whiteside is off the floor, Dwyane Wade is averaging 26 points per every 36 minutes, and the Heat are outscoring opponents by two points.
"Miami is currently 5-2 without Hassan Whiteside this season."
NEW NFL TV PACKAGE
The NFL will split its Thursday night package among three networks, instead of two, beginning next season. And the league has figured out a way to pocket an extra $150 million by welcoming in a third rights-holder.
For the past two seasons, CBS aired eight Thursday games (mostly in the first half of the season), with NFL Network simulcasting those eight games and also exclusively airing eight of its own.
For the next two seasons, CBS will televise five early-season Thursday games, NBC will air five Thursday games (beginning Nov. 17), and NFL Network will carry eight others on Thursdays and at least one Saturday. NFL Net also will simulcast the CBS and NBC Thursday night games.
CBS and NBC each will pay $225 million for their five-game packages. That combined $450 million is a big increase over the $300 million that CBS paid this season for the eight Thursday games.
Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth, NBC's Sunday night announcing team, also will call the five NBC Thursday telecasts. Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will continue to work CBS' Thursday night package.
THE TICKET LOOKS FOR NEW HOST
Though Joy Taylor's move from 790 The Ticket's morning show to Fox Sports 1 in Los Angeles hasn't been announced, the radio station already has posted the job opening in anticipation of her departure.
Here's what the job posting says on the company web site: "The Ticket Miami, WAXY, an Entercom sports station, has a rare opening for a co-host position on our established morning show. We’re looking for the life of the party. Someone who is opinionated, but can back it up with facts. Entertaining, but entertaining doesn’t always mean funny. You’re a great storyteller and you know sports from all angles.
"The Ticket has an aggressive event schedule, and a co-host of the morning show is expected to participate. A good ratings track record and an excellent ability to work with the sales and marketing/promotions teams is required, as are strong Social Media and Digital skills. If you think you can help bring The Ticket morning show to a higher level, send audio and resume to: MiamiJobs@entercom.com"
Station GM Doug Abernethy said he's unsure how he will fill the job alongside host Jonathan Zaslow and Brett Romberg.
### On one day each season, ESPN likes to have its NBA announcers work college games and vice versa. That's why Jeff Van Gundy will join Dan Shulman and Dick Vitale on ESPN's coverage of Wednesday's 7 p.m. UM-Notre Dame game.
SUPER BOWL TV TALK
No person on television, aside from polarizing Skip Bayless, has been subjected to more ridicule and derision on social media in recent months than CBS officiating “expert” Mike Carey. And if there’s an officiating controversy in Sunday’s Super Bowl, nobody will be under greater scrutiny.
By incorrectly predicting the outcome of several replay challenges in his two years as the network’s rules analyst, and by not measuring up to Fox’s esteemed Mike Pereira, Carey has left himself vulnerable to lampooning, especially on Twitter.
The critics have grown more vocal each week. During the AFC Championship, ESPN’s Dan Le Batard tweeted: “How is Carey ALWAYS wrong? It’s like a spoof of a referee expert.”
During a conference call last week, CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus defended Carey, who worked 19 years as an NFL official, but suggested he wishes he did not predict replay challenges quite as much.
“I’ve seen some of the criticism – some of it is very hurtful, quite frankly,” McManus told me when I asked him to assess Carey's job performance. “Mike has been learning his craft. More often than not, he’s gotten it right. But I will also say he’s disagreed a number of times in some high-profile situations with what the officials have come back [with]. It doesn’t mean necessarily the officials are wrong or Mike is right or vice versa. But it’s a subjective media and it’s subjective calls.”
One such example occurred in the AFC Championship. On a play challenged by Patriots coach Bill Belichick, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning threw an incomplete pass that was overturned upon review and ruled a lateral. Carey said it was a forward pass and predicted the play would stand. Instead, the Patriots took possession after replays clearly showed the ball went backwards.
But according to a USA Today analysis, Carey isn’t wrong nearly as often as viewer perception. The newspaper said Carey offered a prediction on 40 replay challenges this season and was correct on 36 of them (90 percent).
“[His] vast majority of calls have been correct,” McManus said. “I will sit there on Sunday afternoons and there will sometimes be a dozen different cut-ins to our regional games and he is almost always right. Unfortunately, when Mike disagrees with the eventual call, he receives an awful lot of criticism. A lot of these calls are judgment calls.”
McManus conceded that “Mike has perhaps gone out on a limb more than he should in trying to guess or speculate what a call will be. But all he’s giving is his opinion of what he would call if he were on the field.
“And if it’s different than the end result, I think people get frustrated. But I hope they would understand that Mike is only giving
his opinion. A lot of times what we see on the screen differs in the end result from what the referees see.”
### Among the creative features on CBS’ 2 p.m. pre-game show: a segment on the six living play-by-play men who have called Super Bowls: CBS’ Jim Nantz (who will call Sunday’s game with Phil Simms), CBS’ Greg Gumbel, NBC’s Al Michaels, Fox’s Joe Buck, now-San Diego Padres announcer Dick Enberg and retired Jack Whitaker.