Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Tim Tebow debuts for ESPN, talks about singing chaplain

Tim Tebow speaks on ESPN before the BCS

(Credit: AP)

Tim Tebow debuted Monday as an ESPN analyst and acquitted himself rather well, mixing detailed technical analysis of the BCS National Championship Game with the kind of personal experience the network is looking for from him.

Still, the anecdote he offered during a morning SportsCenter appearance from the Rose Bowl had a distinctly wholesome, Tebowesque aspect to it.

When asked...

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49ers-Packers game draws massive audience

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) talks

(Credit: AP Photo Mike Roemer)

Sunday night's 49ers-Packers game at frigid Lambeau Field averaged 47.1 million viewers, which Fox said was the largest audience for a wild-card playoff round at least since 1988, the farthest back its records could document.

In Milwaukee, 58 percent of homes watched the game, including 80 percent of those with a television in use. In San Francisco, the figures were 40 and 74.

From 7:30...

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Nielsen 'playoff' ranks

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick celebrates after

(Credit: AP)

How the eight remaining NFL teams in the playoffs rank in Nielsen’s TV market size, which is based on television households:

San Francisco - 6 Boston - 7 Seattle - 13 Denver - 17 Charlotte - 25 Indianapolis - 26 San Diego - 28 New Orleans - 51...

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Kitten Bowl littered with celebs

Hoda Kotb attends the after-party for a special

(Credit: Getty Images)

Hallmark Channel's inaugural Kitten Bowl Feb. 2 will feature a roster of celebrities in addition to John Sterling, who will handle play-by-play, and Beth Stern, who will host.

Even I have heard of several of them! They include Regis Philbin, Rachael Ray, Hoda Kotb, Lisa Vanderpump, Bob Harper, Renee Herlocker, Chuck Nice, Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Carrie Ann Inaba, Nicky Hilton, Kelly Rutherford,...

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Sly Fox jumps pregame ratings race

Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan appear at Lincoln

(Credit: Getty Images)

Newsday’s Department of Redundancy Department has asked me to take a break from boring readers with stories about NFL ratings achievements, so this week let us turn to . . . NFL pregame shows!

“Fox NFL Sunday’’ again won the increasingly crowded race for eyeballs ready for some football at noon Eastern Time, averaging 3.2 percent of homes and 4.8 million viewers.

Perspective: That’s...

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ESPN experts whiff on picks

The Amazing Kreskin

(Credit: The Amazing Kreskin (Getty Images))

First, full disclosure: I predicted the Titans would beat the Cowboys in Super Bowl XLVIII in Newsday’s preview section, which is why my lovely and talented wife does not permit me to bet real money on sports events.

The good news is I was not alone in whiffing dramatically on my preseason picks for the ever-wacky NFL.

Before the season ESPN sent a chart showing predictions for 35 of...

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It's golf season! In Hawaii...

Lindsey Vonn is flanked by her boyfriend Tiger

(Credit: AP)

Rarely do I read or write about golf in January, but rarely at my house do temperatures fall below zero, providing a frosty glaze to the fallen snow.

So to warm myself up I read a 9,960-word transcript from NBC and Golf Channel in which Johnny Miller, Frank Nobilo and Mark Rolfing discussed the weekend’s Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Maui and the rest of 2014.

Naturally, the subject...

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No one home at Super Bowl

Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino attired in tee-shirt

(Credit: AP)

Never before have the odds been better for a team to play a Super Bowl in its stadium, what with two options this season, and yet . . . nope. The two top playoff seeds aren’t even from the same half of the continent as MetLife. Sad.

Twice, teams have played the big game in their home markets, though: the Los Angeles Rams in the Rose Bowl in 1980 and the San Francisco 49ers in Stanford Stadium...

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NFL wild-card games threatened with blackouts

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers warms up

(Credit: Getty Images)

The NFL has become increasingly concerned about its customers choosing the comforts of their homes and high-def TVs over fighting traffic, paying big bucks, braving the elements and dealing with loutish fans to see games in person.

That is why the league has worked hard to improve the in-stadium experience, including the additions of vast video boards and frequent replays.

The trend...

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Detroit was Hockeytown AND Rose Bowl Town Jan. 1

Fireworks go off as the Toronto Maple Leafs

(Credit: MCT)

Many Americans spent big chunks of their New Year's Eve and New Year's Day watching college football and hockey, beginning with Tuesday night's Chick-Fil-A Bowl. In case you missed it because you have a social life, Johnny Manziel led a wild rally by Texas A&M over Mrs. WatchDog's Dukies and helped ESPN draw 5.3 percent of homes in major markets - its best ever for a non-BCS bowl game.


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