The NFL has circulated a directive to all 32 teams to restrict locker room access for a second straight season in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The policy requires that a maximum of only 50 vaccinated personnel will have access to locker rooms while players are present.
Non-team media will not be allowed.
Those restrictions represent a second straight season in which outside media will not be allowed inside of locker rooms. Instead, teams are allowed to designate three internal communications staffers to handle media duties inside of locker rooms.
The NFL is still relaxing some restrictions on in-person interviews, allowing socially distanced news conferences, postgame news conferences and small group availabilities. In accordance with those moves, Zoom media call requirements have been removed.
The NFL regular season kicks off Thursday, Sept. 9 when the Dallas Cowboys visit the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Brent Musburger is apparently the new radio voice of the Oakland Raiders. However, a spokesperson for the Vegas Stats & Information Network (VSiN) has declined, in an e-mail and telephone conversation with Sports Handle, to confirm or deny their afternoon host and managing editor’s new position.
It’s believed Musburger’s VSiN program, “My Guys in the Desert” would continue with the veteran sports personality as host, even if he accepts the new job.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal citing unnamed sources says the 79-year-old Hall-of-Fame broadcaster will replace longtime Raider radio voice Gary Papa. The Raiders are expected to relocate in Las Vegas in time for the 2020 NFL season. A new $1.9 billion stadium for the team near the Las Vegas Strip is currently about 15 percent complete, but is expected to be ready in time for the move.
Legendary Broadcasters Brent Musburger Expected Return to Radio Broadcast Booth With Oakland Raiders, Soon-to-Become Las Vegas Raiders
Industry observers speculate the delay in a formal announcement could be the result of the possibility of the NFL’s need to examine the specifics of Musburger’s deal with the team. In his prominent role at VSiN, Musburger is now a major advocate of the growing business of sports betting.
The NFL has laid out its “core principles” on the expanding enterprise of sports wagering now underway thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in May, which overturned the federal law essentially banning Nevada-style sports betting in the other 49 states. The league calls for consumer protections, for protections of its intellectual property, and would prefer a federal framework for sports betting, as opposed to regulation by the separate states. The league’s longstanding policy prohibiting players and team employees from wagering on its contests is unlikely to change.
Compass Media Networks has exclusively managed the Oakland Raiders’ radio broadcast rights since 2010. It’s unclear if Musburger would face any restrictions in terms of real or perceived gambling content in his new role or even if he could cross promote or advertise the Raiders’ games on VSiN and the VSiN broadcasts and products, such as its newsletter, during the Raiders’ broadcasts.
VSiN, which began operations in February 2017, is not a gambling site. Its stated mission when founded by Musburger’s brother, Todd Musburger and his son Brian Musburger, is to provide “actionable” information for prospective bettors. It is located at the South Point Hotel Casino Spa in Las Vegas and provides its information via video and voice streaming and over the Sirius/XM satellite radio network.
The post Get a Grip: The Week in Sports Betting and Sports: Iowa, Delaware, NJ and More appeared first on SportsHandle. It’s information overload everywhere, and there’s not time enough to sleep and eat and stay fully apprised of what’s happening on this crazy blue dot of ours (two out of three ain’t bad). Here’s the weekend Sports Handle item, “Get a Grip,” rounding up top stories in sports betting and gaming, and the world of sports at large. You may have missed them, and they are worth reading. This is meant to be brief, so that’s it. Iowa Sports Betting Prospects; Delaware Sports Betting Profits; New Jersey Sports Betting Partnerships and More
The Iowa City-based Gazette reported this week that Iowa lawmakers, its casinos and the state lottery are “all in” on sports betting. Iowa sports betting had decent momentum but little runway in the spring of 2018, when Representative Jake Highfill (R-Johnston) led the the charge on HF 2448 — a bill that would legalize sports wagering in Iowa.
“I really think that if the Supreme Court ruling came in our favor, we would’ve had it done by now because of the momentum,” Highfill told Sports Handle in early April, after one of the possible decision dates passed with no ruling yet on Murphy v NCAA.
Now that SCOTUS has ruled favorably for states’ rights and the ability of each to legalize sports betting or not — Iowa stakeholders appear to be congeal around the same points and surrounding states willing to take deposits from their neighbors, it seems likely to get done early in 2019.
“They’re all in,” Rep. Highfill said about Democratic and Republican colleagues who have been calling him since the Supreme Court ruling.
“Now that the Supreme Court has ruled, there is a lot more awareness,” said Wes Ehrecke, CEO of the Iowa Gaming Association.
On the business side, there are over 20 commercial casinos in Iowa. The Iowa sports betting bill would levy what amounts to a 7.66 percent tax rate on sports wagering revenue and would allow mobile wagering off the bat. Rep. Highfill has previously said that the “integrity fee” or “royalty” is a complete non-starter. They’ll be back in session in early January.
The Other Most Important Stories of the Week in Sports Betting and US Gaming
DEBUTS: Delaware sports betting yielded $7 million in handle and $1 million profit in the first three weeks [SH] REFRESHING: Ohio State AD Gene Smith has a rational approach to sports betting [Dispatch] GOOD QUESTION: Taking a slice: Pirates seek sports-betting cut. Will play improve? [Post-Gazette] THEY WANT NEXT: ‘Kansas and Missouri should get ready to offer sports gambling’ [KC Star] POSITIONING: Mississippi poised to become sports betting capital of the South [Gridiron] MEDIA: Legal gambling could change the way we watch, talk and experience sports [WashPo] EVERYTHING’S RELATIVE: For the last time, NFL ratings aren’t down. They’re up, compared to everything else [Deadspin] TRUTH: Lawyer whose firm reps Yankees and Cubs takes a cut at MLB’S ‘integrity fee’ [NJ OG] AGREEMENTS: SBTech announces partnership with Resorts Casino for NJ sports betting [Marketwatch] INDEPENDENCE DOGS: Wait, how many hot dogs did Joey Chestnut just eat? [ESPN]
Elsewhere in the Wild World of Sports:
SCOUTING: Hunter S. Thompson told Colts owner Jim Irsay to draft Ryan Leaf over Peyton Manning [ESPN] GOLDEN STATE: DeMarcus Cousins on the Warriors is fascinating and frightening [TBL] ON THE LINKS: Eagles will wear home jerseys in New Orleans after golf bet between coaches [PFT] AND, OH, YEAH: LeBron James is now a Laker! Lingering questions [Ringer]
Tweets of Note:
My mate has two tickets for the England vs Sweden game on Saturday. He didn’t realise that it’s going to be on the same day as his wedding, so he can’t go. If you’re interested and want to go instead of him, it’s at St. Andrew’s Church in Cambridge and her name is Sarah
The NFL’s “The Checkdown” asked top active players who they would put on the Mount Rushmore of NFL Players. Said Jaguars All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey:
“My Mount Rushmore is me with four different expressions.”
Video of the Week:
Here’s a preview of the remainder of Grayson Allen’s NBA career before he inevitably ends up in Europe: