ESPNNFL commissioner Roger Goodell reiterated Friday morning on ESPN Radio that he is still willing to consider changes to some areas of the discipline policy but nothing that involves what he classifies under integrity of the game. “I am not going to hand off the integrity of the NFL to somebody who does not understand our business,” Goodell said on ESPN’s Mike & Mike. …

Goodell said he would “of course” pick up the phone if one a representative of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady called to discuss a settlement to an ongoing appeal of his four-game suspension in the Deflategate matter. But he gave no indication he would consider a reduction. “We had a lot of discussions last summer,” he said. “There were a lot of offers back and forth about what to do to settle the issue. They chose to pursue the issue and we chose to move forward and we are where we are.” 

God help me. How long is this Roger Goodell Victory Tour going to last? Seriously, how long am I going to have to tolerate this soulless, masochistic, tedious little despot Gronk-spiking the legal football in all our faces? When he was getting his junk kicked in the dirt by judges, you couldn’t find the man with bloodhounds and an army of volunteers searching the area for clues. Now the most dangerous place in the world is between the CommissionerBot and a microphone.

I mean, listen to that smug tone in the Chris Berman video. If you can stand it. Because is so painful to endure, it could be used as a tribal rite of passage to prove you’ve entered into adulthood. And to the surprise of no one who’s been paying attention, he manages to spin it like the Second Circuit Court judges were saying Tom Brady and Dorito Dink are guilty, instead of what they did say, which is he has a ridiculous amount of power he can abuse without discretion or fairness. And let’s not have anyone kid themselves into thinking he’s willing to talk about a resolution. He’s willing to have Brady crawl in on his belly, admit he’s guilty and beg for mercy. And then he’d throw Article 46 at him and say, “See? I was right all along.” No deal.

I’m in such a blind rage over Goodell and his smarmy insufferability that I’m losing the capacity to form words. So I’ll do what I always do when I can’t write: Steal from a better writer. In this case, Shakespeare. From “The Merchant of Venice”:

He hath disgraced me. And hindered me. Half a million have laughed at my losses, mocked at my gains, scorned my nation, thwarted my bargains, cooled my friends, heated mine enemies. And what’s his reason? I am a Patriots fan. The villany you teach me, I will execute. And it shall go hard but I will better the instruction. 

As I said earlier in the week, I’ve had enough of Goodell’s transparency. Now I’m ready to go back to his days of invisibility.

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After forfeiting their 1st round pick, the Pats get to join the party and draft some new young talent. The guys look at who the team might select over the weekend.
Kirk took more shots at Glenn, Lou and Christian, so the midday show guys respond.
Glenn, Lou and Christian talk about how much money Laremy Tunsil lost when his Twitter, Instagram, and iPhone photos were hacked. The gang also addresses some ESPN on ESPN crime as Dan LeBetard took a few shots at Todd McShay.
Jackie Mac, ESPN, joined the show to wrap up the Celtics season, and talk about what they can do in the off-season to improve.
Glenn, Lou and Christian talk about what went wrong in last night's loss, at home, to the Hawks.


NBC NewsA flyer advising women on how to audition for the University of Washington’s cheerleading squad ignited a controversy Wednesday over female body image and how far educational institutions should go in sexualizing their students.

The flyer, which was posted to the university’s Facebook page this week ahead of auditions for the cheer and dance team, was quickly withdrawn after scores of people objected that it reinforced sexual and racial stereotypes. …

The university’s student government said in a statement Wednesday afternoon that the flyer “does not reflect the values of the University of Washington.”

“An advertisement such as this completely objectifies women and creates barriers that only perpetuates the inaccessibility of opportunities that should be open for every student on this campus,” it said. 

I’m trying here. I’m really trying as hard as I can to keep up with social progress, but they keep moving the goalposts on me.

When they made cheerleading into a sport, I was fine with it. I respect the proud tradition of cheers being led by perky, preternaturally peppy coeds, it requires a certain athleticism and it does hold competitions, so sure. I was on board.

But now it’s a hate crime? Asking prospects to show up to tryouts with the basic requirements of the sport “objectifies women”? What am I missing? Because everything in this poster seems perfectly reasonable to me. I fail to see where telling walk-ons that if they want to make the squad they better come prepared with a bronze, beachy glow and not too much makeup is any different than telling a receiver prospect he has to know the route tree. Requiring a solid black sports bra and jazz shoes is the same as telling baseball recruits to come with their gloves and cleats. And if there’s an appreciable difference between telling defensive linemen they have to keep their weight up and insisting cheerleaders have their “girl about town lipstick” ready for tryouts, I fail to see it.

Lighten up, U. of Washington student government. Not everything is sexist and racist. Stop looking at standards and seeing barriers. Stop taking simple requirements and turning them into inaccessibility of opportunities. Cheerleading isn’t open to every student on campus because not every student on campus is willing to pay the price in flattering eye shadow and volume hair. If you’re going to deny that, than stop calling cheer a sport and make it just another campus organization nobody cares about. Like student government.

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Jerry Thornton

This is the most Peyton Manning thing of all time. I’m not talking about the words of encouragement. I mean taking those words of encouragement and using them to sell high-fructose corn syrup drinks to the masses.

Leave it to Pay-me-a-ton to take his personal correspondence and allegedly innermost thoughts and turn them into a way to make a fast buck. It’s just so him. Because make no mistake, there are two messages here, and they are not “Keep grinding” or “I’m proud of you.” They are “Buy Gatorade” and “Peyton Manning is more than a quarterback. He is a brand that needs to continue to generate revenue.” Even if it means taking his private letters to the people he supposedly cares about and turning them into ad slogans.

I’d expect nothing less from a guy who is so fully invested in his career as a pitchman that he used the occasion of winning a championship on the last game of his career to plug beer and crappy pizza. His image is as manufactured as the products he shills to a gullible nation. And his popularity no less the result of slick marketing than this Gatorade ad. “Sincerely?” Yes. Sincerely exploiting everything he can.

P.S. It’s genuinely sad to see Chris Mortensen in such tough shape. I hope he finds a way to beat his cancer somehow so we can all go back to giving him the business like before. Thoughts and prayers.

DraftKings Millions of sports fans like you are winning big at DraftKings! You can play one-day fantasy baseball for free with your first deposit. Just draft your team, rack up the points and take home your winnings! To play today, CLICK HERE.

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In case you missed it Thursday night because you were watching the Celtics or Red Sox, or just observing the Patriots fans’ boycott of the NFL draft and watching “Big Bang Theory” instead, a subplot unfolded that was easily the most bizarre I’ve ever witnessed in the lifetime wasted watching the draft.

As Ryan Hannable reported on WEEI.com’s It Is What It Is blog earlier, 10 minutes before the draft began, the video above popped up on the Twitter account of Ole Miss left tackle Laremy Tunsil. Before we go any further I should point out that Tunsil is not your garden variety first-round prospect. As of a few weeks ago, before Tennessee traded out of the top spot, he was the presumptive No. 1 overall first pick. Most draft sites listed him as the best player in the draft at any position. In one of my draft previews I wrote of Tunsil, “He’s the best tackle prospect since Joe Thomas came out in 2007. Which is to say much better selection than your Brandon Scherffs, Ereck Flowers, Greg Robinsons or Luke Joeckels.” So to have every personnel staff in the NFL watching him do the old Ground Control to Major Tom on the most important night of his life was just surreal.

Ian Rappoport kept coming on NFL Network with reports of Tunsil’s agent frantically working the phone to assure everyone his client is a good kid. They played the “account was hacked” card. We heard the video is five years old, which would make him 16 when it was taken. As the round went on, more and more teams treated the supposed best prospect of 2016 like a piece of unexploded ordinance before the Dolphins finally tossed him a lifeline at the 13th spot.

Naturally, the plot has thickened. It’s long been public knowledge that Tunsil, like dozens of kids in Lifetime Original Movies before him, has had problems with his stepfather, Lindsey Miller. He got in a fight with the guy last year, and both were charged with domestic violence against each other. Tunsil’s side of the story was that he was protecting his mother. Miller’s side of the story was to expose his stepson for taking improper benefits, which led to Tunsil being suspended for the first seven games of last season. Miller also filed a defamation suit against Tunsil … two days before the draft. It doesn’t take Batman to identify the likely criminal mastermind behind the video is Miller.

Miller, for his part, denies the allegation with the airtight alibi, “I don’t know nothing about no video. I’m not even watching the draft. … I was a Red Cross volunteer of the year. I would never do anything like this.” Ordinarily, I’d say being a Red Cross volunteer of the year would exonerate you from any wrongdoing ever. But Lindsey Miller checks every suspect box from means to motive to opportunity, so I’m pointing all pointable parts at him.

But no matter what you believe happened, there’s no denying this a great story. Add to the fact Tunsil has outed his old school for giving him cash payouts, and you realize this kid is going to be endlessly entertaining. Welcome to the NFL, Laremy Tunsil. I look forward to the dozens of blogs and hours of radio you’ll provide.

P.S. It’s a sad commentary, but Tunsil would have gone to the Ravens with the sixth pick and made millions more dollars if five years ago he’d hit his girlfriend instead of a bong.

DraftKings Millions of sports fans like you are winning big at DraftKings! You can play one-day fantasy baseball for free with your first deposit. Just draft your team, rack up the points and take home your winnings! To play today, CLICK HERE.

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Jerry Thornton
Lucy calls in to talk about her podcast and the "More Than Mean" tweets. The guys are now big fans.

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