Richard Sandomir Notes That E:60’s Exclusives, Weren’t So Exclusive


Richard Sandomir is obviously much more involved in stories like the ones ESPN produced for its first airing of E:60 this last Tuesday. Well according to him……they’ve been done before…..

Sandomir on Farrey’s Florida High School Sexual Assault Piece…..

Farrey’s grim story, heavily covered by The Miami Herald, examined the case of an 18-year-old high school running back in Miami, who had sex with a 14-year-old freshman in a school bathroom. The segment followed the school’s bungled handling of the case, the long delay before the police were brought in to investigate and the eventual indictment of the principal. Farrey’s significant contribution was a tearful interview with the girl’s mother, her identity withheld, who said her daughter had twice tried to commit suicide since the incident and was in a psychiatric hospital.

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The accused player, Antwain Easterling, was arrested but never served time in prison. He attends the University of Southern Mississippi on a football scholarship.

Whoops. On Jeremy Schapp’s Cecil Fielder piece (which a commenter noted had already been done by SI)….

Schaap’s interview with the former slugger Cecil Fielder was billed as an exclusive and detailed his angry estrangement from his son, Prince, who hit 50 home runs for the Milwaukee Brewers this season. It served as a valuable bookend to the 2004 examination of the family’s estrangement by “Real Sports” from the side of Prince and his mother, Stacey, who discussed the huge debts incurred by Cecil.

On Rachel Nichols Vegas Piece….

Nichols’s piece, the flashiest in the bunch because it was shot partly in Las Vegas, looked at the influence of a statistician in San Francisco, Bob Stoll, whose uncanny ability to handicap college football games forced casinos to try to retaliate against him to stanch their losses. The story, which ended without a satisfying dramatic resolution, was reported at length in January by The Wall Street Journal.

On Bill Simmons’ EA Sports Segment….

The final segment found Bill Simmons, the “Sports Guy” columnist for ESPN.com and ESPN the Magazine, donning a motion capture suit to record his physical movements so he could play himself as a Boston Celtic in a video game. Funny idea — what would Andy Rooney do? — until the camera showed an enormous EA sign in the background. The merger of journalism and product placement is not amusing.

Just about the only piece he didn’t trash was the Jason Ray piece, and went so far as to copare the 4 major reporters to NYPD Blue’s cast. It’s a great read that sheds some light on items that were reported locally before making it to the ESPN Monolith. It’s never bad to revisit items, but ESPN failed to mention any other publications that covered these stories and almost made them out to be exclusives.

I think the show has potential, but let’s not call these things exclusives unless they are….like the Ray Piece.

Debut of ESPN’s ‘E:60’: Been There, Seen That (NY Times)

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