Dawn of a New Day

Hall of Fame Week is near, and there are big plans afoot.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton has just finished a 32,000-square-foot expansion project, and there could be more big plans as the Hall celebrates its 50-year anniversary next week with a record number of returning enshrinees to celebrate this year’s class of seven. Induction comes August 3 in Canton.

I’m hearing the league is looking into having a second Hall of Fame game—a game that would be played during the regular season to great fanfare, in a move designed to increase interest in the Hall of Fame. There’s no question Hall fathers are trying to boost attendance at times of the year other than Hall of Fame week, when the place is bursting with fans. And calling a big regular-season game “The Hall of Fame Game’’ could focus attention on the Hall, particularly if there are programs in the home city of the game designed to spur interest and tourism there. As for the game, maybe it’s a Thursday, Sunday or Monday night primetime game. Maybe the Hall sends a traveling collection of busts and memorabilia to the game site, or to a museum in that city.

My idea? Get a traveling collection of leather helmets and the like, and find a good museum in New York to house the display during Super Bowl week this year. Maybe you’d get people to say, “I’ve never been to the Hall. I’ve got to go.” I have a vested interest; I’m a Hall voter, and I’ve been there more than a few times, and I know how fun it is to get lost in the place for a few hours and experience the roots of the game. If the regular-season game works as a concept, along with the attendant network and media promotion of the game, I say why not?

***

Getting to know you.

Sports Illustrated managing editor Chris Stone, I am happy to report, allowed me to sign my top three draft choices earlier this year as the writers for The MMQB. Why’d I pick Bedard, Vrentas and Klemko out of such a crowded field of good journalists? They’re young (average age: 30.7), which I liked; I wanted new ideas. They’re eager. I’ve watched them all in action and have been impressed with how hard they work and how much they want to be good. And I think they’re versatile. But I kept coming back to the second point. I wanted smart people who love this job. So off we go.

I wanted to let you see a glimpse into each of the three correspondents for The MMQB. So I asked them: How’d you figure out you wanted to be a writer?

KLEMKO: “I grew up in a family that put a high priority on the historical record. My father, an office mover who doesn’t care about sports, keeps a library of more than 100 Civil War history books. He dragged the family to places like Antietam and Gettysburg during our childhood summers, asking my two brothers and I to imagine the sacrifices men on both sides made for what they believed America ought to be. My mother, a veterinarian, kept a catalog of Sports Illustrated magazines in a bedroom in our home in Silver Spring, Md. I was around 10 years old when I asked the question every warm-blooded Maryland boy eventually asks: ‘Who’s Len Bias?’ She unearthed a dust-covered, decade-old magazine from a pile: June 30, 1986, ‘Death of a Dream.’ I read every word, and I remember feeling as though I was holding something tremendously important. Years later, I imagined the great sense of responsibility the writer must have felt, asked to sum up a man’s legacy with words. I wanted to feel that.”

.

VRENTAS: “I always get the same questions. ‘What was your major again?” Biochemistry and molecular biology. ‘And WHY did you become a journalist?” I know, it doesn’t make a lot of sense. My older sister, Cathy, was actually the first person to suggest I try out for the student paper, The Daily Collegian, when I was a freshman at Penn State and she was a senior. I found out I loved it: meeting interesting people, telling their stories, sharing with readers things they wouldn’t have known otherwise. Choosing journalism as a career was a bit of a leap of faith, but it was one I couldn’t imagine not taking—and that’s how I feel about joining The MMQB.”

.

BEDARD: “I knew that I wanted to be a sports writer when I was given my first beat, the women’s softball team, at the Rutgers student daily newspaper, the Daily Targum. I loved everything about it. I covered that team like it was the Red Sox. I would skip classes to cover a doubleheader at Princeton. The ability to immerse yourself in everything that comes with being on a beat—the day-to-day ups and downs, developing relationships, covering exciting games, analyzing why things went bad or well, and translating that for the reader—was intoxicating. Almost immediately, I knew that’s what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.”

.

Me? Well, I got incredibly lucky. We lived in northern Connecticut, halfway between New York and Boston, and my father was a big newspaper reader. He’d buy four or five newspapers on both Saturday and Sunday, and I’d devour the sports sections. If I couldn’t grow up and play left field for the Red Sox, well, maybe I could write about them. When I was in fifth grade, I wrote a one-sheet neighborhood newsletter in the summer every couple weeks. My mom would put carbon paper between sheets in the typewriter and type up the thing for me, and I’d distribute it to a few neighbors. Can you imagine what a nightmare nerd I was for those neighbors? Don’t answer the doorbell Mabel! It’s that King weirdo again with the stories about his wiffleball games! Anyway, I got lucky. I found out what I wanted to do early in my life. And 46 years later, I still really want to do it.

So there we are. We look forward to telling you some good stories.

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224 comments
ExReader
ExReader

You have 10 THINGS YOU THINK YOU THINK.  I have 1 THING I KNOW... this site is now terrible.  Thanks for taking the one thing that millions of us probably sat down to read and enjoy over Monday lunch at our desk and making it an annoying pain in the a$$.  Coaches and general managers get fired I would suggest taking a hard look at the CNNSI MMQB project manager, web designer and any other associate that was involved in creating this mess.  Who tested this?  Did anyone do a focus group with some users?  Enough complaining here is a suggestion...  Add a subscription link so we can all get just your Monday article emailed directly to us on Monday morning - then we can get just what we want.  Until it's fixed I'll read somewhere else probably here: http://msn.foxsports.com/  Look how clean and simple that is.  Might want to pass that on.

MikeyHorse
MikeyHorse

This new format is terrible. MMQB was a must read. Now? Forgetaboutit!

ptcuttlefish
ptcuttlefish

Not a great start when your first new hire has grammatical errors in his bio..."asking my two brothers and I..."  C'mon folks!

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

King congrats on the site.  I'll be a regular visitor, looking forward to it. 

JMillerNC
JMillerNC

Peter, dude, where is your Mailbag?  And where is the "Email Peter King" link?  The 6 letters you've printed in your Mailbag from me over the last decade won't fit into a Tweet.  We need email.   :)


dukegfsl
dukegfsl

Nice plug for Payton regarding the gift to Parcell... Not sure that olive branch will yield any fruit.  I'm afraid you burned that bridge to N.O. back in 2012 Peter. Good luck with that and Geaux Saints!

jrobb5
jrobb5

Greg Bedard is the best nfl writer I have ever read or heard comment on the nfl. Give this guy a chance

harborbill
harborbill

Yuuk!  Peter have read your MMQB column and enjoyed for several years.  Very much liked your take on the NFL.  Don't like the 'new' column.  Too much puff.  Like to be able to pick out the writers I wanted to read.  Don't care about the three additions to 'your' coumn, no matter how much boasting you offer for them.  May be find writers, but would have found them on my own if interested on their take on the NFL.  'New' column is waaaaay too long.  Not sure if I will continue reading. 

epste696
epste696

I agree with all the comments about printing.  You should definitely fix that problem.

PaulHolland
PaulHolland

I've been wating for the mailbag column too. Not overly impressed with the new site either. It's just NFL coverage. So it's in a new format, who cares? I like MMQB column because Peter is excellent writer. Maybe the other writers are excellent too, but I won't read them more because they are on the site Peter "runs". I am going to continue reading Peter's columns, Don Banks' columns, and then the other things that sound interesting - exactly as I always did when everything was just on NFL page of SI's home site. It all just seems far too complicated for no real change. Sorry, Peter.

CoreyLivermore
CoreyLivermore like.author.displayName 1 Like

Did I miss something?  No mailbag column last week; no mailbag column this week.  Did Peter just stop responding to mail for no reason, or did he actually post that he was done with the mailbag column and I just missed it?

Hughmanity
Hughmanity

It's never enough anymore to just have a good thing and stick with it.  Nope, we must EXPAND! FRANCHISE! LINE EXTEND!  It's the Wall Street mentality.  Who cares if you have a multi-billion dollar company, we only care if it's GROWING!  I'm sad to see that MMQB has fallen victim to it.  I'm sure the money was too good to pass up.  Just like when the NFL inevitably expands to 18 regular season games and 16 playoff teams, it's a happy day for the money men but a sad day for the fans.

ThomasM
ThomasM

0 results for "zimmerman"

jaykahl
jaykahl

can someone please explain to this man what constitutes a haiku? I keep writing but he won't listen. These are not haikus. It takes more than the right amount of syllables per line to equal a haiku. I keep sending him proper definitions but he won't listen. Very insensitive to both an art form and a foreign culture but then again didnt Mr King print Tommy Harrison's anti Semitic jokes with no apology, simply removing the text when caught (however it remained cached by google for days)

jaykahl
jaykahl

More Olivia Munn, less baseball!

efrankv
efrankv like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

I'm already sick of hearing about the Cowboys.  They are not 'America's Team' anymore.   And not very good.   Jerry Jones needs to get out of the picture.  Until then any head coach there is a straw man,.  

couch68
couch68

Waaaaaaaaaah! So sorry that you had to read a few paragraphs from a football writer about a team you don't like. Does your diaper need changing, little fella?

Little beeyotch.

DuWayne B
DuWayne B

Cowboy way?  Does that mean blow and strippers the night before each practice?  Daily seminars led by Tony Romo of "How to be a Clutch Performer"

tj90036
tj90036

CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 CANNOT FIND PRINT BUTTON - THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

marcnak1
marcnak1 like.author.displayName 1 Like

This has the feel of an SNL skit turned into a movie.  Listen, I loved the Watabi brothers movie and a few others, so it could work.  The key is the people writing not named Peter King.  And if it's overkill with all NFL, all the time.  Presumably, we're all King fans that have come here.  It was the same thing over at Grantland, Simmons brought people to the site but in enough cases, other writers have kept me coming back.  But Grantland covers other sports, TV, movies and pop culture.  Good luck to all involved.  Oh yeah, put a print button somewhere so I can read this in the crapper.  Thanks.

Joebuckster
Joebuckster like.author.displayName 1 Like

Not a fan. MMQB was ok, but doesn't deserve a website. It was just the only thing of it's kind, and now it's become bloated. Way to ruin a good thing, King. I'll look to real websites like CHFF and ProFootballFocus - this is the same old fluff - just more of it..

dhartm2
dhartm2 like.author.displayName 1 Like

Can I get a word count on Alagash White?  I'm pretty sure it would crush the Ravens.

JoelFrank
JoelFrank like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

holy cow peter.  the first two pages of this is you introducing what you are doing.  We see what you are doing.  I just want to read MMQB like I have been for years.  JUST GIVE ME MMQB WITHOUT ALL OF THIS FILLER!

Matthew W
Matthew W

The problem with the Cowgirls isn't their coaching, its the fact that they have the most inept GM in the business.

dhartm2
dhartm2

I know it's a game of page clicks, but no way to view the full article is miserable.

thomasoverley
thomasoverley

How much does Peter get paid to constantly push HBO shows

thedsr
thedsr like.author.displayName 1 Like

Holy crap "put it in print" guys.  DANG.  Quit whining soooo much after the first day.  They got it!  Okay!  Shut up!

D.G
D.G

Pete, the haikus. No....just........no.

ieatchickens
ieatchickens

Does anyone have a link to the MMQB regular site? For some add reason, I can only access the low vision version.

grogseal
grogseal like.author.displayName 1 Like

This format will take some getting used to.

sypolar
sypolar like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

KING OF THE BLOWHARDs -- nobody says less with more

Mrboxer178
Mrboxer178 like.author.displayName 1 Like

It's good to see a writer who REALLY knows football is getting his due and his own gig. Mostly everything PK writes is insightful and entertaining. It seems like there are too many hacks out there that restate the obvious. Keep it up PK!.... BTW, u hiring?........ Jk.

Joebuckster
Joebuckster like.author.displayName 1 Like

@Mrboxer178 You think King knows football? I guess that's why you enjoyed his column, because you know even less than he does. There is less football in MMQB than most articles - the horrible Haikus, pedestrian insights into beer, etc, etc... King is just lucky there is no competition because everyone is as lazy and uninformed as he is...

MichelleRosas
MichelleRosas like.author.displayName 1 Like

Please provide us a print version option. I hate going on a sports sight and all they have is a video option. If I wanted video I can watch espn.

elguapo52
elguapo52

Ask Rod Marinelli how that "small, cat-quick defense" worked out....

DrewMason
DrewMason

As long as Jerry is running things, Garrett doesn't have a chance.

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gidalkaiser
gidalkaiser like.author.displayName 1 Like

I love the expanded content the new site generates but PLEASE add a PRINT option for us old guys that like to read longer content off of physical pages. 

Bernard4195
Bernard4195 like.author.displayName 1 Like

I love the expanded content the new site generates but PLEASE add a PRINT option for us old guys that like to read longer content off of physical pages.  

jshawaii22
jshawaii22

Peter,   Where's the contest for those of us who read all the way to the end of the first blog?  

After traveling this summer, i thought you were going to tell us what a great deal $3.50  is for a bottle of water...   50% to the airport and 50% to the vendor.   Think of it as another airport tax.

And traveling this summer, I noticed I pay more rental car fees per day than the cost of the rental.  You should be a pro on that one.  

Great start to a new site.

js



all1623
all1623

Peter,

Congrats on the new site.  All I can say is outstanding!  You all should be very proud.  Was fortunate enough to make 2 trips to Allagash this week.  1 on our trip into Sebago Lake for a case of house beer and the second on our trip home today to refill the wooden house beer rack and to pick up some of their other specialties.  Great place.  They've expanded the retail/tasting room.  Worth a trip back when you have the time.

 Andrew

 

Sudden10
Sudden10 like.author.displayName 1 Like

Thanks Peter for the providing reading every Monday Morning, I always looks forward to it.

Kegaan
Kegaan

Peter,

At the end of the first page, it use to have all the page numbers and a feature that said "Show All", would be nice to have again. Thanks, enjoy the column weekly, can't wait for Denver versus Baltimore, Denver is my favorite since Peyton went there. Have a good one.

LeighFitzpatrick
LeighFitzpatrick like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

First off, to those griping about no print option.  A fellow named Jason Purdy who I assume works on the MMQB site repeatedly posted the following earlier today: "hello! thanks so much for your feedback. we hear you loud and clear and we'll make sure to add a "view all" button to the pagination so you can hit Control-P/Cmd-P in your browser."  Not a perfect solution but close!  

So take a deep breath and slowly untwist your knickers.  

More importantly, Mr. King, MMQB has become ritual in our home here in Reno.  Thanks for producing such a consistently great 'must read'.  Good luck with the new adventure....can't wait to see how it unfolds.

BillSomppi
BillSomppi

With the new format I was hoping that somebody would clue Peter King that factoid doesn't mean what he thinks it does.  A factoid is that Ben Franklin was the fourth president of the USA.  A fact is that Ben Franklin was NOT the fourth president.  A factoid looks like it could be true, but it is not.

Knowitall
Knowitall

And definition number 2? Or do you have the discount dictionary?

Seek accuracy, and ye shall find.

Knowitall
Knowitall like.author.displayName 1 Like

Actually, a "factoid" is a "briefly stated, usually trivial fact".

As Casey Stengel said "....you could look it up...".

BillSomppi
BillSomppi

@Knowitall

fac·toid noun \ˈfak-ˌtid\ Definition of FACTOID

1: an invented fact believed to be true because it appears in print

Just because people use it wrong doesn't change the real meaning.

DLV
DLV like.author.displayName 1 Like

How convenient of you to only provide the portion of the definition which supports you position while totally ignoring the second accepted definition which makes his use of the word acceptable.  I'd assume it was simply a difference in dictionaries if I hadn't found EXACTLY the same definition as you.

fac·toid noun \ˈfak-ˌtid\

1: an invented fact believed to be true because it appears in print

2: a briefly stated and usually trivial fact

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