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Media Life:ESPY nomination for Auburn’s Bassmaster champ Skeet Reese

Bobblehead dreams come true; Blogosphere now has Media Life: Etc.
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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Skeet Reese’s win last year as Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year has vaulted him into the running for a fan-focused ESPY award. The Auburn fishing pro is one of five nominees for Best Outdoor Athlete in the ESPN-hardware sweepstakes. Reese’s credentials include the Angler of the Year crown and a Bassmaster Elite Series victory in 2007. A personable, telegenic ambassador of the sport, Reese rose to prominence last year with his strongest season ever. Also on the short list for the Outdoor Athlete ESPY are sled-dog superstar Lance Mackey, inspirational mountain climber Scott Smiley, long-distance swimmer Skip Storch, and mountain climber Dave Hahn. The 16th annual ESPYs will be telecast on ESPN and ESPN HD on Sunday, July 20. Originating from Los Angeles, they’re hosted by singer-actor-golfer Justin Timberlake and feature the results of fan voting that’s now taking place. Reese is up against some lower-profile competitors. But they’re athletes who could tug at the heartstrings a little more with their own back stories. For instance, Smiley is an Army captain who peaked Mount Rainier in Washington after losing his sight in Iraq. Hahn also scaled new heights, climbing Mt. Everest for the 10 time – a record for an American. As well as Outdoor Athlete, voters can cast their ballots for favorites in the best moment, best game, best championship performance and best player categories, among others. ESPY voters will also have a chance to vote for their favorite sports movie. The nominees are “Resurrecting the Champ,” starring Josh Hartnett and Samuel L. Jackson, “The Game Plan,” with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, “Semi Pro,” starring Will Ferrell and Woody Harrelson, and “Leatherheads,” which stars George Clooney and Renee Zellweger. Local fans can give Reese’s chances a boost by voting online at espys.tv and by cell phone at espn.mobi. Voting ends July 12. MORE TV SPORTS It’s every jock’s dream to be lionized with their very own bobblehead so is it no surprise that it’s filtered into the world of TV sports guys? It may not be on the same scale as the bobblehead mania that struck Auburn and environs during the Kings’ glory days (anybody want to buy a used Hedo Turkoglu or slightly scuffed Doug Christie?) but KCRA has what looks like a fan favorite in the form of a Del Rodgers bobblehead. Rodgers has some sports chops to back up his bobble. The Channel 3 sports director and anchor played four years with the Green Bay Packers and two seasons with the rival San Francisco 49ers. While with the red and gold, he was on the winning side in Super Bowl XXIII. That was a 20-16 victory over the Miami Dolphins. To ensure people are aware of Rodgers’ gridiron cred, his bobblehead is wearing a facsimile of his prized Super Bowl bling. The first 3,000 fans at last Saturday’s Sacramento River Cats game were given the Rodgers bobblehead. The statuette is also available in limited numbers from the KCRA 3 Experience in Sacramento’s Arden Fair Mall at $6.99 per head. Keeping with the football-TV theme, Rodgers will be on the air next Friday with KCRA sister station KQCA My58 for a pre-game special to start off the Oakland Raider’s pre-season-within-a-season. Game time is 7 p.m. and the opponent is the San Francisco 49ers. As part of this year’s hoopla My58 is inviting fans to win prizes in a weekly photo contest during the preseason. Tickets and prize packages are up for grabs, with viewers voting for their favorites each week there’s a game. ONLINE SPINOFF If you’ve been monitoring the Journal’s Website of late, you’ve been noticing a sprouting of staff blogs, including an offshoot of Media Life. Called Media Life: Etc. the blog opens up a new avenue to reveal even more of the local treasure chest of esoteric modern and historical lore in the Auburn area. Recent posts have dealt with everything from a reader’s query on an old Auburn Journal carrier bag, to a 1915 photo of Iowa Hill pitching phenom Bill James, to a Top 5 list of retro signs in the area. This coming week, the staff blogs – including Media Life: Etc. – will be given more prominence on the left-hand side of the Web page. As well as Media Life: Etc., you can see Deric Rothe’s Inside the Fishbowl, Michelle Miller-Carl’s Newly Home, Loryll Nicolaisen’s Between Bites and This Week in Photos by Ben Furtado. Keep watching the Web page for blog improvements and stay tuned to the regular Media Life column appearing Fridays in the Journal and late Thursdays on the Web. The Journal’s Gus Thomson can be reached at gust@goldcountrymedia.com.