Shanoff's Wake-Up Call: Is Media Celeb Erin Andrews The Next Tony Kornheiser?

Today's Calls: Stephen Curry vs. Blake Griffin, Mack Brown vs. Will Muschamp, LeBron vs. New Jersey, Dustin Pedroia vs. Nellie Fox, A.J. Burnett vs. CC Sabathia, Ryan Dempster vs. Jake Peavy, Greg Oden vs. Anthony Morrow, Roger Goodell vs. Pacman Jones and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: Erin Andrews is NOT going Hollywood. ↵

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↵That said, she told SN's Chris Littmann in an interview that she is "not really looking to get into entertainment right now." ↵

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↵Right now. So she's not ruling it out? ↵

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↵EA's future is big news, because she is arguably the biggest celebrity in the sports-media world — certainly the biggest one among younger consumers (and producers) of sports blogs, for whom she has driven untold tens of millions of pages of traffic. (Cough.) ↵

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↵I find the obsession with Andrews — particularly with her looks — to be kind of ludicrous. "Hot for sports TV" is absurd, not to mention demeaning. Do people take Kirk Herbstreit more seriously than Lee Corso because he's a better-looking guy, or because he's a great analyst? ↵

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↵I hope EA doesn't go Hollywood — even though I'm sure the offers are there — because it undercuts her consistent argument that she is a sports freak who loves her job as a reporter. ↵

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↵Now, that's not to say she can't have an expanded role for ESPN. In fact, the company would be crazy not to make that happen. ↵

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↵She could be the network's Rachael Ray, taking advantage of her populist appeal, particularly with younger viewers. Send her around the country (even more). Give her her own daily show, something so obvious that I cannot believe it hasn't happened yet. ↵

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↵Rather than "go Hollywood," EA should go for a more substantial accomplishment — becoming the first female sports talent to crack the "top tier" of Bob Costas, Chris Berman, Dan Patrick and Tony Kornheiser. ↵

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↵CBB Last Night: What a thriller between the Oklahoma Griffins and the Davidson Currys. OU won the game behind Blake Griffin's "20-20" double-double (25/21), but Stephen Curry put on a show, scoring 44 (though hassled into 12-for-29 FG). What a rare treat to see two first-team A-A's going head-to-head. ↵

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↵Meanwhile, the early-season blues continue for Kentucky. After losing over the weekend to VMI, the Wildcats got their doors blown off by UNC playing without Tyler Hansbrough. (Plus: Did poor coaching doom Arizona at home vs. UAB? Would that crazy ending have happened under Lute Olson?) ↵

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↵Texas finds its next head coach, and Mack Brown isn't even retiring. Current defensive coordinator Will Muschamp was tapped as the successor, ensuring stability worthy of one of the Top 3 coaching jobs in college football (Texas, Florida, USC). ↵

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↵Spencer Hall loves the move, as do I: Muschamp is the best D.C. in the country — and, by far, the hottest assistant coach. He was going to get some amazing head-coaching offers, either this offseason or in the future. None would be as good of an offer as coaching Texas after Brown eventually steps down. ↵

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↵The downside is Texas has made a commitment to hire as their next head coach someone who has zero previous head-coaching experience. No matter how good of an assistant someone is, it isn't the same as running their own program. Texas skipped hiring the next Urban Meyer in favor of the next Bob Stoops. ↵

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↵NBA Instant History: Just when Cavs fans think its benign for LeBron to visit New Jersey, he goes and says something like this: "I think you do what is best for you and you do what is best for your career." ↵

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↵No athlete's utterances are as finely parsed as LeBron's. Kind of like his buddy Warren Buffett, James is the "Oracle of Akron." And while the sorry state of the Nets — not to mention a crumbling deal to move the team to Brooklyn — undercuts them as a suitor, Cavs fans have a right to be wary. ↵

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↵Because what is "best" for LeBron's career is a move to New York to play for the Knicks. (Sorry, Detroit. But, as a consolation, you can use all that cap room to sign two superstars to thwart LeBron for a title.) ↵

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↵Oh, and if the actual games on the court — rather than the head games — matter to you, LeBron became the youngest player ever to score 11,000 points, while the Cavs clobbered the Nets. ↵

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↵More NBA: No Garnett, no problem. The Celtics still beat the Knicks, even without suspended KG. ... Greg Oden Watch: 22 and 10 in a Blazers’ loss to the Warriors (Anthony Morrow Watch: 25 on 8/12 FG!). ... The Nuggets are playing with more confidence right now than any other team. ... Studs in a Lost Cause: Chris Bosh (40 pts, 18 reb) and Derrick Rose (25 pts, 9 ast). ... Injury Watch: Is T-Mac a drama queen? ↵

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↵MLB Awards Season: Dustin Pedroia wins A.L. MVP, only the third player ever to win MVP the year after winning Rookie of the Year (Cal Ripken, Ryan Howard). To win the award from 2B is arguably even more rare, becoming the first one to do it since Nellie Fox in '59. The voting wasn't very close, which I would call a bigger surprise than Pedroia winning at all. ↵

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↵Let's look ahead to next season. Here are the earliest-possible predictions for next season's key awards: A.L. MVP (Manny Ramirez); N.L. MVP (Ryan Howard); A.L. Cy (CC Sabathia); N.L. Cy (Johan Santana). ↵

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↵MLB Hot Stove: Yankees offering A.J. Burnett 5Y/$80M(?!?!) Two words: Carl Pavano. If/when the Yankees make this deal, I'll put the over-under on Burnett's season-ending injury at "Four days after pitchers and catchers report." ↵

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↵(Meanwhile, is this instead of or ON TOP OF the rumored 6Y/$140M offer to CC Sabathia? Wait, I'm sorry: I meant "!?!?!?") Again, we see the theme of this year's free-agent class: What recession? ↵

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↵Cubs re-sign Ryan Dempster at 4Y/$52M. He had a break-through year as a starter, and would be a strong holdover with Zambrano, Harden and Lilly ... and Jake Peavy? ↵

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↵Mariners hire bench coach Don Wakamatsu as manager. Previous MLB managerial experience was apparently not a factor for Seattle. ↵

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↵CFB Top 25: If it's a weeknight, it must be Ball State! It's the toughest game of BSU's season — at MAC rival Central Michigan and like the Cards, unbeaten in the MAC. The Chippewas are the two-time defending MAC champs. Nate Davis vs. Dan LeFevour is a great matchup of QBs. ↵

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↵CBB Recruiting: Top SG Xavier Henry will follow his brother C.J. to Memphis. John Calipari has built a great program, but it always strikes me as odd that a top prep would go to a non-major-conference school. I guess if you're "one-and-done," you want to be in college hoops' closest thing to a pro program. ↵

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↵The Last Word: Should Roger Goodell reinstate Adam “Pacman” Jones? Jones is back in Dallas after finishing up his alcohol rehab and the four-game "minimum" suspension that the NFL qualifies as "indefinitely." ↵

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↵If Jones had no other track record of problems — at all, let alone this very season — I would let him back in immediately (of course, with no previous track record, he likely wouldn't have received a minimum four-game suspension). ↵

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↵But given his problems earlier this year, I think the Commish should send a signal by sitting him at least two more weeks, to see if he can control himself while outside the confines of a rehab clinic. ↵

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↵Dan Shanoff writes The Wake-Up Call every weekday morning for SportingNews.com and blogs daily at DanShanoff.com. Got any comments, questions or feedback? Email Dan at shanofftsn-[at]-gmail-[dot]-com. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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