Erin Andrews receiving death threats

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By Paul M. Banks

In both the worlds of both sports journalism and search engine recognition, Erin Andrews, Queen of the Sideline Princesses, is a tour de force. It seems like everyone out there loves her. Or so we thought until the stalking/nude video taping incident occurred. And now it appears another perverse nutbar, somewhat influenced by Michael David Barrett actually, is after EA.

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What’s the Next Step Up for Erin Andrews?

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By Paul M. Banks

ESPN sideline princess Erin Andrews is a huge star in the internet and sports nerd worlds, but now she has the proper card to play in order to go more mainstream. And it’s not the “sex sells” card. To find out what new asset EA has going for her, continue reading after the jump.

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Online Obsession with Erin Andrews gone way too far

Erin Andrews Video Stalker (and Blazers Fan) Released on Bond

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By Paul M. Banks

The demented weirdo accused of secretly videotaping ESPN sideline princess Erin Andrews through a peephole leading to her hotel room was released from court yesterday. Michael D. Barrett (not the former Cubs catcher, may I remind everyone) is an insurance executive accused of uploading videos of Andrews, and other unsuspecting nude women to the Internet. According to the Federales, Barrett makes his videos by modifying peepholes in hotel room doors, using a hacksaw and a cell phone camera, and then tries to sell them to celebrity gossip site TMZ.

Barrett, the pride of Westmont, Illinois, was released on $4,500 bond and ordered to wear an ankle monitoring bracelet, follow a strict curfew (this should put a damper on his obviously bustling social life) and stay off the Internet. He’s next due in court on the 23rd. After being released late afternoon yesterday, this ladykiller avoided commenting publicly and left in his yellow Mustang. Andrews’ attorney Marshall Grossman, has not publicly commented yet.

More on this from the Huffington Post. Excerpts of this article are in italics, my commentary in bold

Barrett continues to be a danger to Andrews and “a danger to other women,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Grimes told U.S. Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys during Barrett’s bond hearing Monday.

Magistrate? People still use that word? it makes me think of Braveheart, and inspires me to start talking in ye olde English

“Yes, Judge, there are other women,” Grimes said. “He has used his computer to disseminate these videos to the world.”
Grimes said the government has confiscated two computers and cell phones used by Barrett, and “feels strongly that those items will provide further evidence.”

Of course, those other women, who are just as victimized as EA, don’t get to go on Oprah
Like the Andrews videos, the videos of the other women were shot through a door peephole and uploaded to the Internet under a name Barrett used, “GOBLAZERS1,” Grimes said.

Barrett’s parents are from Portland. Trailblazer nation, be proud. You have a sick person with a distorted view of the world within your community, but enough about Zach Randolph…

…Of course, you were able to trade him out of town, so maybe you can get Barrett off your bandwagon too.

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Andrews appears in at least eight videos nude. An FBI affidavit said Barrett specifically asked for a room next to Andrews at a Tennessee hotel where seven videos were likely taken. An eighth video may have been shot at a Milwaukee hotel. Barrett was described by his attorney, Rick Beuke, as having plenty of money and a good track record at work. Beuke said his employer, the Combined Insurance Co., based in Glenview, where he is in insurance sales, is “very supportive.”

Well, if he’s such a great North Shore guy, why is spending his time on this stuff? If he has so much money and stability, why can’t he find a woman to willingly take her clothes off for him?

But Combined Insurance spokeswoman Amy Burrell-Tichy said later Monday that Barrett has been suspended from his job and “there is no timeframe with this suspension.” She declined say whether he would be paid while suspended. She said the company is cooperating with the FBI and conducting an internal investigation because the affidavit alleges Barrett may have used Combined Insurance computers in the alleged crimes.

So remember that the next time your computer at work kicks you off Facebook.

Erin Andrews Sexually Harassed by College Gameday Sign

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By Paul M. Banks (photo courtesy of The Big Lead.com)

ESPN College Gameday may want to re-consider broadcasting live if this continues. Or they might want to dip into their deep pockets, and hire some private security to screen out the people coming to see the show. Check out this photo on The Big Lead.com it’s the full size version of the thumbnail above, and I have a feeling that we’ve now found the guy who secretly videotaped Erin Andrews through a peephole. Because the maker/carrier of this sign is just as much a disgusting degenerate as the person who violated her privacy earlier this year.

Whether you love or hate EA, you have to be with her on this one. Seriously, this sign didn’t cross the line of bad taste, it dropped a nuclear bomb on it. This is, to quote Seattle Seahawks Coach Jim Mora yesterday, “unacceptable. UNACCEPTABLE.”

It will be interesting to see how ESPN handles their future on-site broadcasts, and possibly censoring the unruliest of fans who show up. Because this network is owned by Disney, and just as last night’s Family Guy reminded us, every thing produced by the world of Disney is happy, and family-friendly. Well, sort of.

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The Sports Bank’s Live College Football Blog: Week 2

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Greetings college football fans! Well, it’s week two of the college football season and since our live blog went so swimmingly last week, we thought we’d come back and do it all over again.

I’m your host, H. Jose Bosch and I, along with a host of TSB writers will take you on a magical journey throughout the Big Ten and the rest of the nation throughout the day. There may be some more Arby’s jokes, Paul Schmidt might break all rules of journalistic integrity and pound Ron Zook’s face in when Illinois inevitably has another disappointing weekend and David Kay will once again risk his life covering a swine flu-infested football team.

Who knows what kind of wacky mayhem will happen!

So sit back, relax and enjoy yourself. Questions, comments or concerns may be addressed in the comments section, where we encourage you to add your input on any game you’re watching. Bonus points for finding/highlighting embarrassing moments. If you can provide a picture, even better. This thread will be for the noon games and we’ll have a second thread for the 3:30 games and beyond.

Oh and yes, Charlie Weis is fat. Go Blue!
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Is ESPN Going to Cover the Erin Andrews Story?

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By Paul M. Banks

Erin Andrews is the most recognizable on-air personality for the most powerful entertainment network on Earth. Due to her combination or looks, knowledge, personality, looks, plum story assignments, intelligence and looks, she’s become possibly ESPN’s biggest rock star. And now that she’s been victimized, her star is set to rise way beyond the stratospheric level it currently resides at.

ESPN has been called many things: the four-letter, Eastern Seaboard Programming Network, the Boo-Yah Network. But the most appropriate nicknames are “The Evil Empire” or “The Mothership.” Because they’re the 400 lb gorilla in the room of sports media; actually, they’re so powerful that the Disney-owned concern makes 400 lb sports media gorillas look like 4 ounce gorillas. If you’re living in a cave and haven’t heard the Erin Andrews saga by now, here’s the gist of it

Some creepy, pathetic weirdo taped EA changing in her hotel room and then posted/distributed the video online. Its now been pulled off the internet and most places claiming to host it actually give the user malware, a Trojan horse or some other computer virus when they download it. I usually think that hackers are the lowest form of primordial ooze life has to offer, but on this one I give them a high-five. Because Andrews’ privacy has been violated and her image tarnished, and those who add to this injustice (by watching the video) compound the problem by receiving stolen property. Both the producers and watchers of the video are committing illegal acts, and I sincerely hope Erin Andrews is able to recover some form of compensation for the humiliation that she has suffered.
Any web page with a picture or mention of Erin Andrews is blogosphere gold. Her internet cult following makes web traffic flock to anything EA related. This goofy YouTube tribute video has been viewed well over two million times. As awful as this situation seems for her now, in the end she’ll be fine. If there’s anything America loves, it’s an underdog story. Look at every politician who has risen to high office: every one has a story of overcoming adversity in their biography.

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ESPN produces a full roster of personalities that have engaged in controversial (and sometimes harassing) behavior relating to sex, including:

-Chris “Mr. Family Values” Berman and his penchant for “making it rain” in strip club V.I.P. rooms.

-Sean Salisbury emailing a female co-worker a picture of his…”little friend.”  The part of his body that seems to make his decisions.

-Harold Reynolds, fired for supposedly giving “an inappropriate hug” to an intern at a Boston Market. And if there’s anything defining sexy in this world, it’s a Boston Market hug…especially one that inspired the name of a sports blog.

-Mike Tirico and his lurid tales that helped sell books

None of these incidents were reported at all by ESPN (for obvious reasons). So if the four-letter network ignores or under-reports this story, it won’t exactly set precedent. But the Andrews story is much bigger than all of them combined. And the demand for information on it is too high to keep ESPN from covering it. If they’re truly “the worldwide leader” than they need to keep the public updated on the story that the world is demanding to know about- even if it revolves around one of their stars.

Of course, this incident is completely different from the four I just mentioned in that here, the ESPN personality is the victim, not the “victimizer.” It mostly resembles another incident in which the journalist was the one begin harassed, not doing the harassing. erin-andrews

The popular blog Kissing Suzy Kolber got its name from the night a drunk-of-his-ass Joe Namath tried to pressure sideline reporter Suzy Kolber into kissing him during a NFL game carried by the network. The duo calling the game for the Bristol boys that night repeatedly said how “happy” Namath was. What an often “happy guy” he truly is. Obviously happy=drunk and horny in that context, but it was a perfect example of how the Disney-owned sports media empire “Disniefied” an “adult situation.”  So that’s what I think the network will do here.

They’ll probably try to minimize a situation that the world wide web buzzes about and try to find some way to give a G or PG rated account of a NC-17 situation. Given the corner they’re backed into- probably the best thing they can do.

Tune in this weekend for more ESPN criticism. A friend of mine who actually works for the evil empire asked me to DVR the Espys for him. I’m going to have him over for dinner Sunday night, and for the first time ever, watch the Espys! Lots of sites do anti-ESPN material. But I’ll be blogging my vitriol with a member of the network actually beside me.