11 Questions with Chuck Todd
4. Tempted by a Sports Column?
Posted On 05.17, 2013

5 of 12

‹‹ 3. Innovation in Political Media Drive by Sports Media? 5. Should Players Campaign for the Hall of Fame? ››

RCS: You gave an interview with TV Guide in which you said, “For a few years I worked at a sports publication. I realized that I missed politics and that you shouldn't make your hobby your full time job.” But there are guys out there who have had success commenting on both. Gregg Easterbrook, George Will and Keith Olbermann come to mind. So is there part of you that’s tempted to put your sports background and knowledge into an occasional column?

Todd: Absolutely. I wrote one a few years ago. I had this idea of entirely remaking the competitiveness of baseball. If baseball wasn’t going to go to the NFL socialized system of fully sharing revenue so that the Yankees and the Kansas City Royals had the same amount of revenue coming in, then I had this idea that, because baseball is about statistics meets strategy, if you have a payroll of a certain amount of money, you end up in a certain division, and you have to compete more often with folks that have this similar amount of payroll. So you force the competitiveness and you force the strategy. There’s a lot more strategy now behind contracts, and how much money you’re going to spend in free agents and all this stuff. And also it decides which division you end up in and who you end up playing. That way the Pittsburgh Pirates, and the Oakland A’s, and the Kansas City Royals might have shots to make the playoffs more often than now.

So bottom line, yes, I do like to slip in an occasional sports thing every now and then. But I keep it occasional.

When I did it full time at Sports Business Daily, what I found was that it was the same story over and over again in the early 90’s when I was doing it. Is so-and-so going to get a new stadium? Are they going to get taxpayer funding? And when they get the new stadium, is it going be Miller or Bud? Is it going to be Coke or Pepsi? You just realized it was just really the same stories on the sports business world over and over again. The market would change, my line would change, the tagline would change, but the stories were the same. And now I went to a ballpark and that’s all I would look at. How much signage they had, who had the pour, who was doing anything original and innovative. So I stopped enjoying sports, and I realized politics is more what I want to throw myself into and sports would be my decompression.

RCS Interviews Chuck Todd

‹‹ 3. Innovation in Political Media Drive by Sports Media? 5. Should Players Campaign for the Hall of Fame? ››

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