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Sportsnation



ESPN always has fun shows around the mid-afternoon to early evening time slots.  Many tune in or set their DVRs to record Around the Horn and Pardon the Interruption.  Many also like the daily Outside the Lines thirty minute time slot to tackle the real questions in sports.  But there’s a fairly new show that has been created by ESPN.  It’s called Sportsnation and is shown on ESPN2 and sometimes ESPNews.  If you’ve ever visited ESPN.com, you would see a voting portion where they put up questions to poll the nation.  Well, executives decided in this information age of Facebooking and tweeting, why not make a show that is based on fan interactions?  I think it’s genius but I’d be interested to see what the ratings actually are.

The show is hosted by Colin Cowherd and Michelle Beadle.  Cowherd is probably best known for his radio show on ESPN Radio while Beadle is a former YES network New Jersey Nets correspondent.  As moderators, they cater to the fans by choosing their show topics from what fans are talking about.  They stay mainstream by showing videos on the internet and staying updated on athlete tweets from the four major sports.  While Beadle has some solid sports knowledge, Cowherd is the one that is always willing to express his opinion.  He professes his love for his Lakers and stands by Kobe when he gets ripped.

The show has many funny and entertaining segments and while many true sports fans might brush the show off as being a total joke, it does make the hour go by quickly.  My favorite segments are three jeers, three tears, and three cheers.  Each group has three videos where athletes are either congratulated, knocked down, or just a funny fail.  Fake calls from real fans is exactly what it sounds like.  Fans call in to a toll-free number and record a 20 second message pretending to be a sports figure of their choosing.  Some are pretty entertaining and funny.

Their game time segment is also entertaining, especially Walk the Plank.  Walk the Plank features one of the hosts asking a few questions to the other while dressed in a pirate costume.  For each question, the one answering must predict the percent of sports nation answered.  For every point off, an avatar of the host walks the plank and if they are off by more than 40 total percentage points, falls off the plank.  The reward is to reshow a video of their choosing, usually just one gloating over winning.  Another segment is where Colin dresses up as Ron Burgundy and plays the Multi Poll Choice game. Michelle is given four questions, each with four possible percentages as correct answers, and she must predict how the Nation responded.  Like Walk the Plank, the winner gets to re-air their favorite video of the day.

On October 5 of last year, when the show was still new, they decided to put themselves on the map to commemorate that day as Brett Favre Day.  Beadle and Cowherd attempted to break the world record of most mentions of Brett Favre in one hour and were successful, ending with  203 mentions.  Yes, the show is that crazy.  Beadle has also gone as far to nickname Lebron James as the “Akron Hammer”.  While that nickname might not be around for that much longer, this show will definitely stick around for a while.

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