Los Angeles Dodgers right fielder Andre Ethier catches a ball hit by the New York Mets' Michael Conforto during the second inning in Game 5 of baseball's National League Division Series Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)

Before we get to the mailbag, we are going to introduce Friday's cool stat of the week: This week we'll go with this and share that Mets infielder Michael Conforto is now the third baseball player to complete the World Series Slam. Conforto will join catcher Jason Veritek and pitcher Ed Vosberg as the third player to play in the Little League World Series, the College World Series and now the World Series.

From the "Talks too much" studio, let's mail this thing in. Wait. Oh you get the idea.

From Sean

I love what you guys do on Press Row. It's awesome.

I don't know if you listen to Mike and Mike in the morning but they were talking about cheering for or against your friends' teams. What do you think about that and do you cheer for your friends' teams to win or for them to lose?

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The New York Mets celebrate after Game 4 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, in Chicago. The Mets won 8-3 to advance to the World Series. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Sean —

We heard a little bit of this and found it amazingly interesting.

More times than not we cheer with our friends, but in some ways that says more about the degree of your friendship, right?

It also is way different in each sport. We were pulling for the Cubs in the postseason (after the Dodgers were out, of course) for a few of our friends who are long suffering Cubs fans. 

And of all the sports in which you are willing to root against your friends, college football is king. That's because a) almost every game has some meaning — be it recruiting or standings or what — has meaning on your team; b) the explosion of college football has been fueled in part by the over-the-top passion of the fan bases; and c) smack-talking about college football is a lot of fun. 

It's strange, too, now that we spend three hours a day on the radio, other than our really favorite teams (we'd likely put that order at Auburn, the Dodgers, the Falcons, LeBron) we find ourselves rooting for story lines that will story conversation — be it here or on Press Row.

Great question Sean.  


From Mike

The announcement of the ESPN layoffs is sad.

If you were there and got to make the decision, who would you get rid of?

Thanks and love reading the 5@10.

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FILE - This Sept. 16, 2013 file photo shows the ESPN logo prior to an NFL football game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Pittsburgh Steelers, in Cincinnati. ESPN. Disney's ESPN on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015 confirmed it is cutting about 300 jobs, or 4 percent of its staff, amid signs that the traditional cable bundle is less far-reaching than it once was. (AP Photo/David Kohl, File)

Mike —

First, layoffs are always sad. As we wrote this week, more time than not, it's people losing their jobs for things they had no control over. 

According to this, it sounds like most of the cuts will be behind the scenes personnel and that means the quality of the things we enjoy watching on ESPN will likely suffer.

A lot of the on-air folks — good or bad — have contracts, and cutting ties with them would not really save the four-letter network any money. The biggest names have likely already left — guys like Olbermann, Cowherd and Bill Simmons — because their contracts were almost done and they parted ways.

That said, we would not share any tears if Chris Berman's time was starting to wind down. It likely will never happen since dude has been there from the beginning.

Thanks for reading Mike. 


From Chas

If UofL cuts loose Ricky P., which SEC school will hire him?


Chas —

First let's examine the Pitino issue.

Did he know? We think he knew some shady things were happening. There's no way he couldn't with players and staff talking about this or that over a four-year period, he had to have some idea. Plus, the amount of money we are talking here is significant, and it had to come from some where.

So with that much money flowing — and let's be clear, great college coaches are control freaks, and Pitino is no different — there had to be some connection and knowledge of the recruiting extravagance.

Now, we also think Pitino knowingly did not seek out more knowledge about the deeds happening at the on-campus dorm/brothel.

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FILE - In this Feb. 12, 2009, file photo Louisville coach Rick Pitino, left, talks with guard Andre McGee during the first half of an NCAA college men's basketball game against Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind. Escort Katina Powell says she has no proof that Louisville coach Rick Pitino knew that a former Cardinals staffer hired her and other dancers to strip and have sex with former recruits and players. But Powell said Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, on ABC’s “Good Morning America” that with “a boatload” of recruits and dancers, “loud music, alcohol, security, cameras” in a campus dormitory and others aware of the shows, “how could he not know?”(AP Photo/Joe Raymond, File)

Which begs the question, which is worse? Knowing about all of it or knowing something shady is going on and refusing to investigate it because you want plausible deniability when it hits the fan?

We think they almost are equally as bad, and each should be a fireable offense. 

But where are we really in regard to this, and does success wash away all misdeeds? Roy Williams obviously thinks so. So does Larry Brown. Those two cats just ambled through two of the most blatant academic fraud cases in recent memory. 

Brown lied and tried to block the NCAA's investigation and he's going to get a nine-game suspension and one postseason absence. And he's an old-school Goodfella when it comes to breaking NCAA rules.

Williams was part of a near-two-decade academic fraud, and there's been next to nothing done to UNC.

So we'd expect Louisville sticks by Pitino — heck, they hired Bobby Petrino for crying out loud — and tries to let this blow over.

Now if the shadiness affects the Cards recruiting and Pitino starts to lose, well, then he'll be on the outs. 

And that's a sad state of where college athletics lives.

As for your question, if Pitino gets the boot, he'll spend the next eight months yakking on ESPN — heck, they trotted Ray Lewis around all its platforms to talk about his book with barely discussing his role in two murders. (Side note: Lewis' contention in the book that he was not involved in the double-murder in Atlanta in 2000 hinged on the fact that he was dressed to go out — in a fancy white suit that was never recovered — and that he would not want to mess his clothes up is laughable. So too was his statements on air this week that the dudes who were killed were much smaller than him so he would not have mixed it up with them. PUH-lease. And that he was being trotted around everything from ESPN Radio to talk shows to SportsCenter as people were being let go is even worse.)

Where were we? Oh yeah. We could see two places in the SEC: Texas A&M and Arkansas.   

Great question, as always.




From Stewwie


Brady* is out of his mind if he thinks he'll play for 10 more years. Unless his snake oil guru has him on HGH or something else illegal that is going undetected. But Brady* would never do anything against the rules to gain an unfair advantage, right?

I don't think he'll ever be a consensus GOAT. The ring count is the ONLY thing that will keep him in the discussion...kind of like Bill Russell in the NBA. Brady* has never been the dominant QB in his era. Throughout the 2000s, Peyton was king. In the '10s, Rodgers has been king, and that won't change anytime soon. What other GOAT from any sport has NOT dominated his league? Besides all of that, Brady's* entire legacy thus far is marred by all the cheating. I can't imagine anyone would consider a known cheater to be the greatest ever in anything.


Stewwie —

Not sure if you heard us this week on Press Row, but Paschall and I talked about this very question and it's an interesting point.

And as for your belief that the Patriots are as crooked as a Louisiana politician, well, we thought you'd like this. Yep, there's a movement started in Indianapolis (not surprisingly) to try to get the NFL to put an asterisk next to all of the Patriots' records.

We agree that it's hard to see anyone playing football until they are 48, but the five-year window could be in play as long as he stays motivated and healthy.

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New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady speaks with reporters during a news conference before an NFL football practice, Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, in Foxborough, Mass. The New York Jets are to play the Patriots Sunday, Oct. 25 in Foxborough. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

And since it's quarterback — the position by which winning has the greatest value — if Brady gets to five or especially six Super Bowls, the totality of his numbers would be staggering. Plus, if he did play five more years after this one, he would likely be in the top three of all meaningful passing stats, too.

While we can see you assertion about being the GOAT without being a clear-cut best of his generation — Jordan is the perfect example — but two things: First to say the rings are the only thing that keeps Brady in the discussion is looking past his abilities and numbers. He is a multiple MVP and right now in the top five in passing yards and TDs. Second, quarterback is different. Why is Montana frequently mentioned in the GOAT discussion? 

Rings, and they matter more for a quarterback than any other position in any other sport.    



From Jomo

Jay- wow, how the Tenn-Bama game has really lost its luster, when ESPN game day has decided to choose James Madison - Richmond game over going to Tuscaloosa. In the article announcing, network officials said UT - Bama game was " underwhelming " .......sad state of affairs, huh ?


Jomo —

We don't think that's apples to apples.

First, ESPN has routinely made it a practice to go to an FCS game once a year, be it North Dakota State or Montana or wherever. 

Second, as someone mentioned, unless it's a very rare case, GameDay prefers to go to a game that is either on ESPN or ABC.

Third, there's a chance they may go back to T-town for the Alabama-LSU game in a couple of weeks, and they were already there for Alabama-Ole Miss last month. As good as Alabama is, three trips to the same burg in the same season is a bit much.

That said, if this game was in Knoxville and the hype that would be surrounding that vibe, it would have had a better chance to have the GameDay crew in town.

Anyone want to predict the final score? We'll go Alabama 38-24.