This is not (at all) a Pat McAfee hit. It’s more important about how we should categorize what McAfee does, because Athletics – you know that the sports site is owned by The New York Times — name him Sports Media Personality of the Yearand that implies that he is a journalist.
What McAfee does has press notes. He has a show where he interviews athletes, saying X and O about ESPN College Gamesand fulfill the role of WWE Analyst Friday Night Smackdown, generally a sport. (dead gyro tells about wrestling as if it were a sport, but tells the plots as if they were a prestige TV show.)
However, McAfee is both a journalist and a footballer. Hitters and hitters are human too, but when Jay Feeley calls up a game, the only time I appreciate what he has to say is when it involves the game of kickball. The same logic applies to McAfee.
Unless he is losing money because of a gambler, the rest of what he says – while being informed – should be taken as entertainment. He had a breakout moment this year, which I’m going to talk about, and a way of dealing with it that wasn’t present in any of the classes I’ve taken. (I have a degree in news media editing, which is half the reason for this obscenity.)
I think McAfee is great game, and it was the perfect forum for his schtick. He can call Peyton Manning “The Sheriff,” co-manage the band UT, and jump back into the Tennessee River at will. Being charismatic doesn’t make him more of a journalist than Lee Corso.
sport praises McAfee for this beacon of the industry for ignoring the mistakes he purposefully made. Dan Patrick is also friendly with a lot of athletes. However, when he has a question, they can expect a difficult question or two. McAfee has free access to Aaron Rodgers because he lets Rodgers say whatever he wants, and McAfee nods like he’s a Green Bay QB therapist.
Journalists would actually rebuke Number 12 for his stance on vaccines, and call him out for trying to tie vaccinations to “”wake up the crowd. Just because it comes from mostly Democrats doesn’t cause it to wake up.
McAfee broke the biggest Rodgers story of the year. QB revealed for the first time that he wasn’t vaccinated for more than his next dose of ivermectin, and would have gotten a lot of response if it weren’t for a frank laugh when he said he’d found it. Search podcaster Joe Rogan for advice on alternative vaccines.
Who gave Rogan a Ph.? I know he didn’t get one from an accredited college. But no, McAfee looked with an “I’m listening” face as if it was 3 a.m. and Rodgers was presenting him with an idea for a bar and grill.
Other journalists did yeoman’s work in 2022, and someone like Baxter Holmes — a Bearded James Reward winner – Whose report? led to Robert Sarver putting the Phoenix Suns up for sale, which deserves recognition. How about The New York Times’ Jenny Vrentas*, who dig up the story details of Deshaun Watson met 66 different masseuses over a 17-month period and discovered that Houston Texans had activated their QB behavior. Since then, the Texans have settled a lawsuit over the allegations and all the thorough reporting certainly played a role in getting Watson’s suspension appealed and increased to 11 games.
(* As stated above, the NYT really own sport, it was hysterical because they started ending the newspapers. Even if it’s not a conflict of interest, Vrentas won’t win of athletics reward.)
I understand that most sports media followers have probably never heard Vrentas speak, or seen her make a lot of money off a boat. The only time Holmes has airtime is for random hits on works he’s written. In the master plan of sports journalism, those stories matter more important than McAfee’s brand of response.
Now that the sports media has moved from factual coverage to reacting to games with silly arguments that will never be resolved, the noisiest, most lovable person will get awards basically for not being so overwhelming. (Yes, I am fully aware How ironic this is as I’m writing it.) A lot of what we feel about broadcasters or personalities comes from whether they’re new or new. Tony Romo was great until it became a play. I don’t love it for the damn Cowboys, but I think even Jim Nantz is sick of Romo’s energy.
The best thing about McAfee is that he’s bearable. That will soon be tested as he becomes more and more ubiquitous. As it is, he is unbelievable – that’s ironic – that’s why he was named of athletics Character Media Character Person of the Year.
If you’re wondering what gets more clicks: McAfee or hardcore investigative journalism? That’s McAfee. I even wrote about him earlier this yearand it is positive because he is very good at his job. What exactly is his job – that’s another story.