Jay Busbee

  • USOC: Athletes concerned about Zika virus should skip Rio

    Jay Busbee at Fourth-Place Medal 3 hrs ago

    With fewer than six months remaining until the start of the Rio Olympic Games, a new threat has emerged to the Games' stability: the Zika virus.

    The U.S. Olympic Committee has told the organizing bodies of various American sports that if athletes or support staff are concerned about the Zika virus, they should consider not traveling to Rio for the August Games, according to a new Reuters report. The USOC delivered the message to various sports federations in a late-January conference call.

    "One of the things that they immediately said was, especially for women that may be pregnant or even thinking of getting pregnant, that whether you are scheduled to go to Rio or no, that you shouldn't go," said Donald Anthony, an Olympian and the head of U.S. Fencing. "And no one should go if they feel at all as though that that threat could impact them."

  • Deion Sanders lights up Cam Newton: 'You can't do that'

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 12 hrs ago

    Moments after the Super Bowl ended, Cam Newton suffered through a disastrous press conference of his own making, keeping every answer short and not sticking around very long. That didn't sit very well with some NFL elders discussing the issue on NFL Network afterward.

    [Follow Shutdown Corner on Facebook for instant updates from Super Bowl 50]

    "You are the face of our brand right now, you can't do that," Deion Sanders said after the game. "I understand the emotions of losing, but you can't do that. A Manning, a Brady ... all these guys who are a prototypical type of quarterback in our game, they're not going to do that ever. Would Drew Brees ever?"

    Sanders continued.

    "You're opening yourself for more criticism," he said.  Because everybody is going to say you're dabbing and smiling and smiling and styling. So this is how you go out when you lose?"

    Marshall Faulk, who knows the pain of losing a Super Bowl, tried to put Newton's sour attitude in perspective and staged a nice debate with Sanders that made for good television.

  • Aqib Talib falls off NFL Network stage, pops up grinning

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 13 hrs ago

    But a Super Bowl ring will cure a lot of back-end bruises, and wipe out the memory of a game where Talib had three penalties in quick succession that could have taken him out of the game. But Talib and the Broncos won, so everybody's grinning.

    Of course, it's worth noting that someone else nearly fell at the Super Bowl, but caught herself:

    Aqib, you're no Beyonce, sir. But that's OK.

    ____ Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION. Contact him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.

  • Why didn't Cam Newton dive for his fumble?

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 14 hrs ago

    Every season comes down to a single play, a single moment which could be the difference between defeat and victory. Sometimes it's obvious, like a missed kick, and sometimes it's hidden in the chaos of a fumbling ball.

    The scene: 4:04 left in the Super Bowl. Panthers down 16-10 but with a chance to win. The Broncos defense had been fearsome, but the faltering Denver offense, which hadn't yet scored an offensive touchdown, had kept Carolina in the game. Panthers quarterback Cam Newton took the snap, dropped back, and was almost immediately swallowed up by Denver's Von Miller. The ball hit the ground, and ...

    ... Newton froze.

    He didn't dive on the ball. He didn't make a play for it. He let it totter away at his feet:

    Denver recovered the ball on the Carolina 9, and four plays (and one poorly-timed Josh Norman penalty) later, the Broncos were up 22-10 and the game was effectively over. Twitter was merciless in its opinion of Newton's actions in that moment:

    Panther fans everywhere : why didn't u dive for the ball ? cam : pic.twitter.com/45Jyqzn9so



  • Michelle Obama mentions the White House's 'Champagne Room'

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 19 hrs ago

    It's a reasonable enough question: where, in fact, does the President of the United States watch the Super Bowl? But when CBS's Gayle King, interviewing the Obamas just before Super Bowl 50, inquired about the White House's many TV-watching venues, the First Lady of the United States offered up an interesting tidbit:

    .@Potus remembered the @ChrisRock #champagneroom song. You can tell when he throws his hands up. @FLOTUS pic.twitter.com/5WXatG4nv4

    "There's the, what I call, the Champagne Room," Michelle Obama said. "It's where my mother sits."

    Yes! The White House has a Champagne Room! How sweet is that, huh? At the end of their combined interview, Michelle Obama left the president to continue, while she retired to a more comfortable locale:

    "You guys can talk," Michelle Obama said. "I'm going up to the Champagne Room."

    Let's get one last look at the president's reaction, shall we?

  • One last look at San Francisco's now-vanished Candlestick Park

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    SAN FRANCISCO—The signs are still there, directing you to parking lots for a stadium that no longer exists. Bayview Hill is still there, looming over Candlestick Point. And the wind—oh yes, the wind is still there, whipping off San Francisco Bay in unpredictable and relentless directions.

    What’s gone are the curving modernist wedges of concrete, the rickety escalators, the battered field that defined Candlestick Park. It was never the prettiest stadium, it was never the most beloved; even its most ardent defenders barely tolerated it. But as caravans of football fans head south on the 101 from San Francisco to Santa Clara, it’s hard not to glance over at the now-empty space at Candlestick Point and feel a twinge of … something.

    “It was tough to get into, tough to get out of, and miserable while you were there,” longtime San Francisco sports columnist Ray Ratto said. “It was a constant endurance test. The fans who put up with that upholstered toilet were raising a middle finger to everyone who couldn’t handle it.”

    And yet, and yet … every other stadium with such an iconic history has had armies of defenders. Candlestick had … survivors, is probably the best way to put it.

  • How would the Broncos and Panthers escape from Alcatraz?

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    SAN FRANCISCO—A mile and a half into San Francisco Bay from the teeming souvenir-seeking hordes of Super Bowl City sits Alcatraz, the legendary now-shuttered prison. More fearsome than a Denver secondary, more confining than the gridlocked traffic around San Francisco, about as enjoyable as an open-letter writer complaining about Cam Newton, Alcatraz’s very name conjures up images of somber, terrifying imprisonment.

    Over the course of its 30 years as a federal prison, from 1933 to 1963, thousands of prisoners passed through its somber halls. Only 36 tried to escape, and only two—maybe—pulled it off. You’ve got to be tough to get sent to Alcatraz, and you’ve got to be even tougher to try escaping. So we figured, why not check with some of the toughest guys in the NFL and see how they’d escape from one of the world’s most notorious prisons.

    “I’d probably have to do some rewatching of The Rock , see how that went down,” said Owen Daniels, Denver tight end, one of many players to reference a prison-break movie. “I know I’m not swimming through those waters. Maybe I need a little submersible.”

  • How 'Cam Newton Drive' didn't quite catch on in Atlanta

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 2 days ago

    UNINCORPORATED SOUTH FULTON COUNTY, Ga.—Driving through the intersection of Scarborough and Welcome All roads just south of Atlanta, it is impossible not to think of Cam Newton.

    Signs from every angle honor Newton, the Heisman Trophy winner, national champion, probable NFL MVP and potential Super Bowl champion. He grew up not far from here, attended Westlake High School right down the road, and one local politician wants to make sure everyone knows it. To that end, there are 25 signs honoring Newton dotted all over the area.

    Bill Edwards, a now-former Fulton County commissioner, spearheaded the placement of the signs, but only after an attempt to get the stretch of road named after Newton himself failed.

    “He’s a hero,” Edwards said. “He’s a role model for young athletes. He’s the son everyone wants, the brother everyone wants. He’s helped put South Fulton County on the map.” 

    That poor image, both observed and self-inflicted, led Edwards to push to honor Newton, unquestionably the area’s most notable product. Fame carries weight; fame trumps the little successes of the everyday.


  • The most expensive Super Bowl souvenirs will set you back plenty

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 2 days ago

    SAN FRANCISCO—The NFL Shop at the Super Bowl is the size of an airplane hangar, large enough to host every kind of souvenir imaginable. The NFL has slapped a Super Bowl 50 logo on pretty much every kind of consumer product that's not actively on fire. Now, you could grab some $35 t-shirts or $3 bumper stickers, but for the serious (and overly monied) Super Bowl fan, items with a two-digit price tag just won't do.

    Tucked into one corner of the NFL Shop is the NFL VIP Lounge, a shopping nook so exclusive you can't even get in unless you spend $300 on NFL goods. (Or, uh, have a media pass.) Let's look behind the velvet rope at the Super Bowl's priciest souvenirs. And no, a ticket isn't the costliest item. Not even close.

    Put your hand on your wallet, and let's enter the domain of disposable mortgage payments ...

    Super Bowl Wine

    A delicious blend of leather and turf. It'll knock you out! But not in a concussion-generating sense. Definitely not. Price: $150 per bottle.

    Super Bowl Patch Jacket

    Want to look like you got down on the ground and rolled around in Super Bowl logos? Of course you do! Be the envy of grandmothers' couches everywhere! Price: $250.

  • Von Miller, Josh Norman challenge video games with Conan O'Brien

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 2 days ago

    The premise of Conan O'Brien's "Clueless Gamer" segment is simple and brilliant: play the most hyper-violent video games with a cast of notable stars, in this case Carolina's Josh Norman and Denver's Von Miller. It's great stuff, and make sure to stick around for the arrival of a very special guest. It's good, clean fun, except with chainsaws and disembowelment.

    Podcast: Predicting the Super Bowl

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    ____ Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION. Contact him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.