Were you like me and wondering why Brent Musburger was interviewing Boone Pickens about the price of oil and building water pipelines during ABC’s telecast of the Kansas-OSU game as the Jayhawks marched down field for another score? I thought this was supposed to be a FOOTBALL telecast. These were topics that George Stephanopoulos should have been handling on ABC’s “This Week” Sunday morning show, instead of a football game. Of course, Pickens is well deserving of an interview after giving zillions of dollars to Oklahoma State, but let’s stick to OSU and sports topics. As with the case of ESPN’s “Monday Night Football,” ABC and ESPN too often get sidetracked from the game with these celebrity interviews. Apparently they think they are trying to keep marginally interested viewers on board, but I think the interviews turn off a lot of people who are actually interested in the game. And, if it’s a bad game, the average viewer will have long since turned the channel. At best, these interviews need to be to the point and much shorter.
Grumpy Old Coaches rankings: Jimmy Johnson continues to give Oklahoma a higher ranking than his sidekick, Barry Switzer, the former OU coach, on Fox’s “NFL Sunday” studio show.
Switzer: 1. LSU, 2. Oregon, 3. Ohio State, 4. Oklahoma, 5. Kansas. On LSU: Good team that hasn’t played a perfect game yet. On Kansas: They don’t have as many athletes as some of these teams, but they’re well-coached.
Johnson: 1. Oregon, 2. LSU, 3. Oklahoma, 4. Kansas, 5. Ohio State. On Oregon: At the end of the year, they’ll still be on top. On Kansas: They’re going to lose.
Switzer also talked about Kansas on his XM Satellite radio show on Monday: “The test is coming up. It’s going to be Missouri and Oklahoma. You can say Kansas has arrived as a football team if they can handle those two. I agree if they can handle those two, they ought to be in the (BCS) championship game.”
Switzer and Johnson also discussed the media’s scrutiny of last week’s postgame handshake between New England coach Bill Belichick and Colts coach Tony Dungy:
Switzer: “It’s a media event. They are out there to capture something that they can criticize and be negative about. Photographers take 20 stills to finally get the one that that they can make a story out of.”
Johnson: “Coaches only do the handshake because they don’t want to be perceived as a jerk. What I used to hate is when the coach that wins comes over (putting his arm around Terry Bradshaw) and says ‘Nice game.’ Get your hands off of me!”
Switzer: “You know what I used to say? ‘Hey nice game. We hung half a hundred on you. Will play you again next year.’”
Channel flipping: Brad Nessler, Bob Griese, Paul Maguire and Bonnie Bernstein will call the OU-Texas Tech game at 7 p.m. Sunday on ABC … Charles Barkley, Ultimate Fighting Championship president Dana White and Eddie George, a former Ohio State and NFL running back, will be the guests at 9:30 p.m. Tuesday on “Sports Unfiltered with Dennis Miller” on Versus (Cox 251). … NBC will have New England on two Sunday nights in a row — at Buffalo this week and home to Philadelphia on Nov. 25.