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Demasio--Some Clarifications

Demasio--Some Clarifications

After yesterday's firestorm, there were a few loose ends hanging from the story about the Coles story that Nunyo Demasio related to the blog. I got some follow up comments from him to clarify them.

He did make multiple efforts to get the principles in the story to react to it before it hit the
presses. First, from the original article Monday morning:
Coles, who has changed his cell phone number, could not be reached for comment. Barnes didn't return several calls last week to his Roanoke, Ind., office. Snyder, through spokesperson Karl Swanson, referred questions to Gibbs. Reached last night, Cerrato declined to comment.In fact, Vinny gave him a triple "no comment, no comment, no comment."

Now, I was incorrect in inferring that the story would have gone through even if Gibbs' flat denial had been issued over the phone on Sunday, before the release story was printed. Demasio told me:
If Gibbs denied the release stuff, the story would have just been that Coles is unhappy and unlikely coming back -- instead of being more specific on how he would be jettisoned.Demasio also told me that he tried to get comments from Breaux and Bugel. He pressed them and they told him to talk to Gibbs.

So, there you have it. Demasio tried to get comments from Snyder,
Cerrato, Bugel, Breaux, Coles, and Coles' agent. For various reasons,
he couldn't.

True, he could have waited until Gibbs got back in town. However, it
was pretty obvious that the paper would have been scooped had he done
this. Again, you can decide if he conducted due dillegence here.

A couple more comments from Demasio:
Perhaps my reporting damaged the team, but i still don't know exactly how, and it wasn't my intention. as you could see by how many people I spoke to, my preference was to work with the team. If coles' leaving was inevitable -- and old news among some guys (players) -- did the skins expect the story to stay quiet until coles was officially gone? And this about having a stake in the success of the team a writer is covering:
Here's the deal: it's actually EASIER to cover a team that wins. As a beat writer you WANT the team you cover to win, although you're not supposed to root for them. It makes it more fun to go in the locker room.

HOWEVER, when the team you cover is struggling and there are newsworthy stories like Coles, you need to write it. if not, you're doing a disservice to your paper, your readers and yourself. And you need to find another job.
There it is. Again, you decide.

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Dale Earnhardt Jr. announces retirement from NASCAR after 2017

Dale Earnhardt Jr. announces retirement from NASCAR after 2017

BY TYLER BYRUM, @theTylerByrum

One of the longest eras in NASCAR will come to an end concluding the 2017 season.

Early on Tuesday morning, Hendrick Motorsports announced that 18-year veteran, longtime Redskins fan and popular driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. would retire at the conclusion of the current season.

Earnhardt, son of the late legendary seven-time champion, Dale Earnhardt Sr., told his No. 88 team members before the organization released the news.

Last season, the 42-year-old missed the final 18 races of the NASCAR season due to a concussion. The injury resulted in a 32nd place finish in the NASCAR standings and it was the first time he missed the association's 'playoffs' since 2010. 

Throughout his long career, Earnhardt captured 26 race wins, two being the elusive Daytona 500 in 2004 and 2014. Due to the legendary status of his father, he never quite lived up to the level many placed on the Earnhardt family name. His win total is roughly a third of his father's and has not won a championship. Best career points finish for Earnahrdt was third in 2003, and finished fifth three times (2004, 2006, 2013). Starting in 603 total races, he has finished in the top 10 in nearly half of those races, 253 times.

Despite the lack of a championship, he was named NASCAR's most popular driver 14 times, trailing only Bill Elliott who won that honor 16 seasons. 


At the end of 2017, Earnhardt's contract with Hendrick Motorsports was set to expire after 10 seasons with NASCAR's most successful team. Prior to his tenure with Hendrick, he was a part of Dale Earnhardt Inc. for eight years where he won 17 of his total 26 race wins. 

Currently, Earnhardt is 24th in the NASCAR standings, 50 points behind the cut-off for the final playoff spot. There are still 18 races remaining in the season for him to make up the ground with some of his best tracks still on the docket. In addition, a win would boost Earnhardt up into a playoff spot due to NASCAR's playoff system. 

With Earnhardt Jr. retiring, there will be one Earnhardt remaining in the Monster Energy Cup Series to carry the family name. Grandson of Dale Earnhardt Sr., and nephew of Jr., Jeffery Earnhardt is a regular in the series. 

Hendrick Motorsports announced in their release that they will not name a replacement for Earnhardt Jr. just yet. During his 18-race absence in 2016, he was replaced by a young prospect, Alex Bowman and four-time series champion Jeff Gordon.

It is anticipated either Bowman or 19-year-old William Byron, who Rick Hendrick signed to an Xfinity Series contract last season, will take his place. 

As a lifetime fan of the Washington football team, Earnhardt has been known to put his opinion of the team out there.

He was not happy with how the team handled Scot McCloughan situation, and publicly voiced his support of Kirk Cousins

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One significant stat that separates Christian McCaffery from Dalvin Cook

One significant stat that separates Christian McCaffery from Dalvin Cook

Football coaches hate fumbles, and Jay Gruden is no different. Remember that Matt Jones had established himself as the Redskins lead running back despite persistent fumbling issues his first two years in the NFL. That was until a goal line fumble Week 7 in Detroit. Jones never played again in 2016. 

Fast forward to Thursday night's NFL Draft, and the buzz surrounding the Redskins interest in Florida State running back Dalvin Cook and Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey could all boil down to fumbles.

Both Cook and McCaffrey visited Redskins Park, and both players possess the speed and game-breaking ability that could deliver big returns to the Washington offense. Since the NFL Combine, McCaffrey has emerged as the higher draft pick.

Their college statistics are fairly similar. Both players went for more than 5,000 total yards in three college seasons. The size is similar too, Cook gets listed at 6-foot, 209 lbs., while McCaffrey gets listed at 5-foot-11 and 203 lbs.

One area that's quite different: Fumbles. 

An average NFL running back fumbles once every 100 carries. Rich Tandler researched an incredible stat about the two players:

  • McCaffrey averages one fumble every 243 carries.
  • Cook averages one fumble every 63 carries. 

The difference is staggering. And it could be enough to keep the 'Skins away from Cook at 17.


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