Playing the Field: Meet Samantha Steele, and the Australian hurdler

Steele was recently the MC at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. Now, she's the new Erin Andrews.

Bye, bye Erin Andrews. Hello, Samantha Steele.

ESPN has replaced (upgraded?) the Sideline Princess with Steele, a former reporter for the Longhorn Network. She will appear on the first hour of College GameDay each Saturday from 9-10 a.m, according to an ESPN release. Steele will also preview the week’s games, sitting alongside Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso and whichever mascot head he’s dating.

So, yes, Steele is quite literally the new Erin Andrews. We wish ESPN’s newest smoke show all the best. At worst, it should certainly get the Worldwide Leader a host of new page hits. We just hope Steele doesn’t go the Andrews’ route and end up on a lame reality show, then squabbling over a new contract in between hanging out with her supermodel friends. I mean, we get it, girls just wanna to have fun — Cyndi Lauper taught us that back in the 80’s. But let’s keep the focus on football for once. OK? OK. Good pep talk. Go team.

From Dream Team to Dynasty

Mike Vick is finishing up his whirlwind PR tour this week and promoting his new book, “Finally Free.” He has appeared on the “Today Show,” called into radio stations and did a prime-time exclusive on CNN with some whiny-sounding English chap named Piers Morgan.

The book itself seems like a must-read, for Vick lovers and haters alike. It’s a true redemption story. In it, Vick admits to lying to his mother about the whole dogfighting incident and how it felt to miss almost two years of his children’s lives.

Of course, that’s not what the national media chose to focus on this past week. Instead, they are breaking down and dissecting a comment Vick made where he referred to the Eagles as a “dynasty,” a team built in the image of those great 49ers and Cowboys teams.

Here’s the exact quote, via CSN Philly

“When I look at our football team and what we have on paper, I think about when I was growing up and the great San Francisco 49er teams, the great Green Bay Packer teams, and the great Dallas Cowboy teams, how they just positioned themselves to compete and be one of the best teams out there. I think we have a chance to be that. I think we have a chance to develop a dynasty.”

Look, using the “D” word here was probably ill-advised, especially after last year’s Dream Team fiasco. But can we please get off the guy’s back? It was an innocent remark used to reflect the potential he sees on his team. Basically, it’s akin to us saying that we think we have a chance to develop a syndicated “Playing the Field” column. Hey, we can dream, too … can’t we?

Hurdlers gone wild

So this went viral Wednesday night, after we shut our laptops down for the evening. Of course, we wouldn’t be doing our jobs properly if we didn’t bring it to your attention anyway.

Usually we don’t pay too much attention to the Olympics — maybe some basketball, definitely some beach volleyball — but for the most part there’s a baseball game to be watched. But Australian hurdler Michelle Jenneke has our undivided attention. This video of her warm-up dance is probably the best thing you’ll see all day (week?).

Kudos again to Australia. The Land Down Under also has Stephanie Rice’s itsy-bitsy bikini representing them at the London Games.



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