I was hoping there would be more to this but its not more than 2 sentences at the very end of the article.
It does beg the question thou.... how?
Would an offensive foul being called on the flopper be enough? or maybe a tech?
Billick and networks covering draft score big
By Michael Hiestand, USA TODAY
NEW YORK — While NFL teams need years to figure out if they drafted well this weekend, the picks can already celebrate — like Brian Billick.
Fox will formally announce Monday that the ex-Baltimore Ravens coach, who debuted as a national TV analyst on the NFL Network's draft coverage, and didn't embarrass himself, will be a game analyst this season. He'll work both two and three-man booths, says Fox's Dan Bell, but his on-air partners haven't been set.
Other draft winners: ESPN and the NFL's network, whose ratings for their simultaneous coverage presumably will rise because of a later draft start time this year and fewer minutes between picks.
Both networks sometimes missed live coverage, as they aired ads, of Commissioner Roger Goodell announcing picks at the podium. Said NFL Network producer Eric Weinberger, amid the din of his production truck Saturday: "The speed of this has been wild."
With the first round having shrunk from 6 hours, 8 minutes last year to 3:30, Goodell concluded Sunday on NFL Network it was "entertaining" and had "a great pace." (But in true NFL fashion, he says he couldn't conclude anything until he watched the tapes.)
Eventually, however, it won't matter if anybody sees Goodell's actual envelope-opening. This year's late start allowed both networks to air four-hour lead-in shows — buttoning down probable picks as if they'd seen exit polls. Said ESPN producer Seth Markman, just before the draft started Saturday: "It's like election coverage. We went on so early, it's like we're projecting states."
The NFL notifies both network producers of picks about a minute before they're announced so they can cue up their highlight packages — which, oddly, never show guys making bad plays — although the on-air types aren't notified so their responses will seem natural. But with various closeups of players the top picks getting congratulatory phone calls before anything becomes official, sometimes there isn't much suspense.
ESPN put cameras in about 10 prospects' homes, which at least produced some drama — closeups of quarterbacks Brian Brohm and Chad Henne sweating it out until they went in the second round — after the six players brought to the draft ended up the top six picks. (FYI: No. 2 pick Chris Long, son of Fox's Howie, will be a running subplot on Fox's NFL pregame show next season.)
But if this year's draft wasn't exceptionally suspenseful, it had its usual idiosyncratic staples. There was ESPN's Mel Kiper showing his steely endurance. Said ESPN research chief Howie Schwab, on the set Saturday: "He's absolutely amazing — he hasn't even (used the bathroom) at these in 20 years."
And there was the sheer oddity of it all. The NFL Network's Rich Eisen noted, on-air to Goodell, that this is "the only business in America where a complete newcomer becomes the highest-paid (worker) in the history of the business he's joining."
Said ESPN editor Rico Labbe, a Boston College player who made the Washington Redskins after being picked in the fourth round of the 1990 draft, as he edited tape in a trailer on the sidewalk outside the draft site: "There's a half a billion players on that stage."
The ratings for golf's U.S. Open this summer will be big — maybe even record-setting. How you know: NBC will formally announce today the first scheduled East Coast primetime weekend U.S. Open action.
That's possible because play — in La Jolla, Calif. — will be in West Coast time. On Saturday, June 14, coverage is scheduled to go until 10 p.m. ET — and to 9 p.m. ET Sunday.
Time slots can be critical to how many people watch weekend events. The 2000 Open's fog-delayed Saturday action, sending coverage past 9 p.m. ET, produced the Open's highest-rated third round. The 2002 Open's rain-delayed Sunday action, lasting past 8:30 p.m. ET, drew the Open's highest-rated final-round rating ever.
And this year's primetime Open might not end up as a one-shot wonder, since the 2010 and 2012 Opens will also be played in West Coast time. Says NBC Sports Chairman Dick Ebersol: "What a great way to spend Father's Day weekend, with the best golfers in the world … in primetime."
ABC analyst Jeff Van Gundy said Sunday the NBA league office has to stop "ridiculous" flopping: "That's their job, that's why they're paying those guys millions. … ESPN's E:60 show Tuesday examines horse cloning.