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Sunday November 29 2015
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Down and Dirty in Dallas

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Don’t worry, no need to review what happened at Super Bowl XLV, you’ve probably had enough. So let’s talk about what PSR did in Dallas. The week’s top storyline was weather.

Not the X’s and O’s, not the coaches, not even organizational pedigrees. All got their due; none came close to the weather and its impact.

Unless you didn’t get to sit in your seat.

You’re welcome to email me at ellis@pittsburghsportsreport.com, or stop me in the street, if you want to debate me. But take my word for it.

You may note I referenced “impact” of the weather. Cold when it should be warm is enough; handling a closed city is another, particularly when you encountered what we did in Dallas and I’m not talking about the standard 18-19 hour work days a lot of people put in at Super Bowls. No, I’m talking about amping up the challenge meter.

Those of you who followed along at www.pittsburghsportsreport.com or www.elliscannon.com know all about it. I didn’t have luggage, or much of my equipment, for most of the trip. Well, I had luggage and most of my equipment. It’s just the airline didn’t, couldn’t or wouldn’t deliver them until I was bordering on my fifth day without them.

That’s right – multiple days, same clothes.

Our producer, Jeff Waller, delivered nearly 20 video webcasts from the NFL Media Center onto our websites. Jeff does television, so producing via personal computer—without all our equipment—was pure joy, all as Tony DeFazio, Tom Ballas, Mike Betters and Marc Grandinetti got it done for us behind the scenes.

What better environment than this to deliver my 30 audio interviews and clips of Steelers players and coaches to the sites every day. Or those daily two minute reports we produced that aired on dozens of radio stations around the state all week, at least some of which had to be delivered in the middle of the night after hotel security lent an electrical adapter for a laptop with a spent battery. All while our publicity guru, Linda Burkley, ensured early morning delivery to the stations.

Don’t forget our sponsor, the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School, which ensured us this mayhem. Most importantly, they allowed for daily chats at www.pacyber.org, featuring not only my thoughts, but sports media, broadcasting and educational advice from former NFL stars, pundits and celebrities, including the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, NFL agent Leigh Steinberg, Mike Florio, Lavar Arrington, Joe Theismann and, of course, Miss America 2011.

These types of experiences—it wasn’t a “trip”—pay dividends for a long time and this was a lifetime event, even if not on script. I’ve covered multiple Super Bowls, trust me, I know it’s a privilege.

But this time, well, there’s no way to thank everyone enough, so take my word for it.

Or email me.

Ellis Cannon can be booked for speaking engagements, event hosting and more at www.elliscannon.com. The Ellis Cannon Sports Business Report airs daily on KQV Radio 1410 and at www.pittsburghsportsreport.com. Fall 2011 enrollment at the Ellis Cannon Academy of Sports Media and Broadcasting is available at www.pacyber.org.

Neil Walker’s contract expires after the 2016 season. The Pirates second baseman is due for a big raise in arbitration this offseason—likely to $10 million—and signing him to a long-term extension will cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $12-$15 million annually.
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