Mandy Mitchell

The Mitchell Report: NASCAR, extra benefits and monster ratings

Posted September 15, 2013
Updated September 16, 2013

Thoughts on the sports world I can't share in a 5 minute sportscast. Some Triangle news. Some not

NASCAR: We make the rules as we go

What a horrible week for NASCAR. I mentioned the Clint Bowyer spin-out last week. I also mentioned I didn't think it was intentional. Apparently I am a bonehead. I have a couple of problems with how the sport handled things this week.

1- It was NOT written in the rules that drivers can't help teammates in whatever way possible. Before you call the team "cheaters," take a look at this letter written by Brian Vickers. I think he's dead on. This goes on all the time. It's unfortunate that a great example of "helping" happened during a high-profile race, but I always have a problem with a sport punishing athletes for a rule that doesn't exist.

2- The sport lets Jeff Gordon in because he probably would've gotten in if not for the "cheating". Lots can happen in the final 7 laps of the race. I'm puzzled how the sport drew the line to let him. I've seen it brought up a lot that if it wasn't Jeff Gordon, this wouldn't have happened. I'm in agreement with that, and it's not a good look for the sport.

Overall I am glad the sport did something. They needed to make clear that it's not acceptable to alter races, but this should've been done a while ago. It's been my problem with teams in an individual sport the entire time. 

Are we numb?

When Sports Illustrated released Part 1 of its series on Oklahoma State, I ran a story in my sportscast. When I was done, a very well-read person in the newsroom turned to me and said, "Wait, is this a new story?"

It seems we are growing rather numb to the "players paid"..."extra benefits"..."NCAA violations" stories. Yahoo! had a story about SEC players getting extra benefits the very next day. It's almost like the steroids stories from the early 2000s. You know there is a major issue, but once you hear 50 stories about it it becomes like the teacher in "Charlie Brown." The reporting on the issue has been fantastic. We are all still waiting on the NCAA to catch up.

Quick Hits

- The Jaguars managed 9 points against the Raiders behind Chad Henne. I am still not understanding why they don't sign Tim Tebow. Can he really be worse?

- This is ridiculous. What is wrong with people?

-People are watching college football in record numbers. The Alabama vs Texas A&M game has drawn the highest preliminary television rating for an afternoon regular-season college football game on CBS in 23 years. Better not let the players see a cent of that revenue! 

Worth Reading

Nice article in Forbes discussing the "student athlete" problem.

Great story about Chargers tackle DJ Fluker.

The NY Daily News details how Coach Cut is still helping Eli and Peyton.


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  • bornbreddead Sep 17, 5:02 p.m.

    How is driving a car as fast as you can in circles a sport? What sport is there where opponents help each other? What sport has participants that are happy with a 20th place finish because it gets "points" in the car named for a bag of chips?

    NASCAR is a joke.

  • Sauras69 Sep 17, 4:28 p.m.

    ^^^ I messed up in the 2nd sentence. It should have been blatant. Sorry.

  • dubious Sep 17, 3:12 p.m.

    Truthfully, I don't understand how this is news or why anyone is "shocked" that a team would help get one of its own into the Chase. Doesn't anyone remember WHY Dale Earnhardt, Sr. wrecked at Daytona in 2001? He was running third and knew he couldn't win, so he blocked Sterling Marlin to keep him from overtaking Earnhardt's two DEI cars running first and second. Who won that race? Michael Waltrip.

  • Sauras69 Sep 16, 10:49 a.m.

    Allowing Jeff Gordon in was a huge mistake by the leaders of NASCAR. A blantact act by these guys. The NCAA is so behind the times in getting it right. They are so inconsistent that schools and players are just snubbing their nose at the dismal leadership. Pretty much a joke.

  • babedan Sep 15, 9:30 p.m.

    If Hendrick had been smart enough to keep Junior on the track and prevent Joey from getting the wave around, then the nothing would have happened.

  • NASL: RailHawks vs. Ft. Lauderdale

    Tomorrow at 7:30 am on WRAL-2

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Tomorrow at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Sunday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MLB: Atlanta Braves at NY Mets

    Tomorrow at 7:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox

    Sunday at 7:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

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