Big Lead Sports Bar


The Jerome Bettis Debate

Everyone has their opinion on the Jerome Bettis NBC Debate. This topic seems to divide Steeler fans right down the middle.

One camp sides with Bettis. "He's just doing his job", "NBC pressured him", "Wanted to make a splash in his first appearance"...

Another camp is firmly against Bettis, with quotes like "Selfish, thinking only of Jerome, as usual" and "Broke the bond of trust with his former coach".

Surprisingly, Bettis was voted "Jagoff of the Week" on ESPN Radio 1250's Junker and Crow Show. This is a contest that was won the previous week by a former college running back who was arrested while brandishing several firearms and a bulletproof vest. I'd take that as being in pretty bad company.

Bettis has also given plenty of fodder to Mark Madden, who has been able to breathe life into the dead horse of his constant Bettis criticism. WE GET IT, Bettis stiffed you on a show apperance a couple years back. Bettis may be a jerk, he may not, but frankly, I'm so tired of hearing about it from Madden's mouth, I find myself turning the dial to Bendel and Benz more and more.

Madden's been taking full advantage of the Steeler fans who feel Cowher was wronged by his former star. He's been fielding calls all week telling him how right he was all along, further inflating his enormous ego.

Why has this become such a hot button issue? Are Steeler fans so touchy about the Cowher situation that they feel Bettis' comments may upset the apple cart? Does it really matter what Bettis says on the halftime show of a preseason football game which the Steelers aren't even playing in?

My stance is this:
-Bettis was trying to make a splash, and certainly succeeded
-Bettis was probably asked by NBC to make said splash
-Cowher overreacted by even mentioning that he called Bettis
-The Steelers overreacted by issuing a press release on Cowher
-The media has overcovered this story, as the case with any Steeler story
-Bettis is a selfish guy. So are most people, especially athletes. That's not news.
-Bettis is a media member now, like it or not. He's now paid to give his opinion, which is all it was.

This story/non-story makes me long for one thing: a competitive baseball team. Maybe if the Pirates ever had some chance of being involved in a race in August, stories like this would not get the excessive airtime and coverage that they do.


Anonymous said...

i think this blog needs to initiate "freddy watch".

SAMO said...

BC needs to shut up and coach his team.

Anonymous said...

Madden should shut up.

hootenhollern said...

Bettis is now employed by NBC as an analyst and not by the Steelers as a player. He will be asked to voice his opion on a variety of football concerns and many times they will involve the Steelers. If he totes the (former)company line and holds back on his opinion as it realtes to Steelers organization he would be doing a disservice to his new employer.

He may have upset his personal relationship with Cowher but everyone should understand, including Cowher, that what comes out JB's mouth may not always be popular but it is what he is being paid to do and with all he has done for the organization, Steelers fans should accept it.

Anonymous said...

"Why has this become such a hot button issue?"

Because football fans have waaaaaay too much time on their hands between games.

Steeltown Mike said...

I'm proud of you RMH. You are joining the throng that find it difficult to listen to Mr. Madden for extended periods of time.

Maybe one day soon I'll have my own show so you won't have to fall asleep listening to Benz, either. :)

Unknown said...

The news media in Pittsburgh are collectively so concerned about being outdone on anything involving the Steelers that they fall all over themselves, each trying to one-up the other.

The overexposure is approaching extreme nausea levels. The result? Well if any other people are like me, a lifelong Steelers fan, right now I feel like I'm on Steelers overload and the stupid season didn't even start yet!

I can understand why Cowher wants to retire, he's sick of it too! That's also why his family has already relocated!!!

To be honest, I've been more intrigued by how interesting it's going to be to have the number one and number two young players in the world, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin on the same team this year. The rest of the NHL has got to just love that! That's more interesting than more stories about how long Ben's thumb will have to remain up his butt before he can play again!!!!

Anonymous said...

Truer words were never spoken WorstAvid. I wish you were deciding the sports coverage assignments in Pittsburgh. You'd probably fire that loudmouth Madden first thing.

Anonymous said...

We can only cross our fingers and pray until the day comes that Steeltown Mike brings his antics to the mainstream audience.

Steeltown Mike said...

I can't tell if that's tongue-in-cheek or not, but thank you, anonymous poster #2. I hope I'm able to provide a more open forum where I'm giving as much as I'm taking, where the fans feel they have a voice and not feel as though they've scored a victory if they can get through a conversation with Double-M without getting insulted and/or hung up on.

Sports Talk itself shouldn't make you stress out.

As for antics...check out my blog. New kind of homemade antic.