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#029: An Insiders Look Into Sports Journalism and Covering the NFL for ESPN & Pro Football’s HOF – Jim Trotter

Jim Trotter – NFL reporter for ESPN, Howard Alum, PFWA president, NFL Hall of Fame voter, ESPN


Junior Seau – Life and Death Book:

NFL Insiders:


Leaving Sports Illustrated:

Jim Trotter Joining ESPN:

Jim Trotter on Twitter:

YouTube Jim Trotter Dan Patrick Show:

Ole Hickory Pits:

Grill Grates:

Weber Grills:

Spring Valley Tailgate & BBQ Festival Photos:

Upcoming BBQ Events and Competitions:

Thank you to Jet West Band for our epic Intro Jingle!

Jet West:
Shawn met Jim through Twitter for fight night back in the day!
Jim loves the Tri Tip at Cali Comfort
Shawn and Derek work hard to raise money for underprivileged youth and to provide them with things like football pads
Jim admits how many things have been taken away from kids these days, and we wonder why we have some of the issues we have today
Derek says because there is “no funding anymore”
Derek and Shawn like to teach lessons, put on events, NOT just give out money (teaching lessons)
Jim has an epic career in journalism
We talk about “clickbait” articles
Jim explains clickbait worked during the Tim Tebow time and the Johnny Manziel time as people continue to click on the articles that keep gaining traction
Jim on football venues “Qualcomm was a dump” “Oakland Raiders had a dump”
Jim was taking a tour in Qualcomm before writing a piece on it and was just amazed at how behind the infrastructure was and how poorly it was constructed, was just a “dump”
The piece on Qualcomm was a column, so Jim gave his opinion and wrote it easily because of how familiar he was with the “stadium”
Jim wrote the book on Junior Seau and it wasn’t as tough because he knew Junior well
Jim met Junior Seau in '95
Jim credits his success to Rodney Harris and Junior Seau, and learning what its really like to be in the locker room and write about it
Jim notes the importance of building relationships
“listen” & “acknowledge you don’t know everything”
Jim used to cover the Gulls back in the day – says how he had most fun doing that vs any other sport
It was fun for Jim because “it wasn’t a thing where every little detail was dissected” “you could actually have a good conversation with others and not have to worry”
As a beat reporter for the Chargers, he wrote on a daily basis
Reporting for Gulls wasn’t daily for Jim
Reporting daily was interesting for Jim because he didn’t feel like he had a mentor to get help from everyday so in his first couple of years he was just operating on fear, stressing over every little thing, (1996) pre social media, jim would have a lot of anxiety on the job
“in sports journalism you are never off the clock – anything can break, even after you filed”
Jim can’t imagine being a beat writer today in 2017 – notes how the pay is still the same but with 2x more responsibilities
Jim notes how it used to just be 2 main stories a day, now its that, updated blogs, digital components, sometimes ESPN, sometimes radio spots
Jim covered the Chargers for 8 years, and he said “I’m not getting off this beat until they [Chargers] have a winning season, always was a non-winning season” because Jim wanted to prove the losing records weren't because of him (Jim)”
Finally in 2004, the Chargers had a winning season and went to playoffs

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