In this week’s edition of “Conversations with Clayton,” I catch up with Scott Alexander, one of the genuine bards of New Orleans sports media. Alexander is currently the host of Prime Time Sports on WLAE-TV, which airs every Tuesday at 11 p.m. Among other things, Scott and I discuss breaking into the sports media, Pierre the Pelican and Tulane football in 2017.
Clayton Trutor (CT): How did you involved with sports journalism?
Scott Alexander (SA): I was a lawyer in Atlanta in 1993 and a friend of mine who worked with Turner Sports asked me if I would be the talent stats guy in the Atlanta Braves press box for Tim Brando, Skip Carey, Pete Van Wieren, Ernie Johnson, Joe Simpson and Don Sutton (two different announcing crews). I gladly accepted. One thing led to another and I became the full-time producer, which led to being Craig Sager's full-time producer, which led to everything else (on-air TV, radio, writing, etc). Not to mention my decade as an NBA and NFL agent. Crazy how these things work sometimes.
CT: Which do you like the best: the work that you've done on radio, in print, or on television?
SA: I love to write and I loved talking on radio, but I have the most fun in TV....no doubt about it!
CT: What's the future look like for the Pelicans?
SA: I'm an eternal optimist, but I truly believe the Anthony Davis/Boogie Cousins tandem is going to work....and it's going to work very well.
CT: How does Pierre the Pelican rank in the pantheon of professional sports mascots? Who is the best college or pro mascot in the state of Louisiana?
SA: Pierre the Pelican ranks very low in the pantheon of professional mascots. And without question, Mike the Tiger from LSU is first among all mascots in Louisiana. And second place is not even close!
CT: Which is more likely in 2017: Tulane goes to a bowl game or LSU makes it to the College Football Playoff?
SA: This is an intriguing question. I guess Tulane most likely only has to go .500 to go to a bowl. And although they haven't been to many bowls lately, they did go 7-5 just a few years ago. On the other hand, LSU has so much ridiculous talent on both sides of the ball. They have to beat Alabama sometime right? Right? No? OK, I'll go with Tulane then!
CT: When you think of Cincinnati, you think of _____________
SA: The Big Red Machine. Even now, over 40 years later, I can name the entire batting order by position, the pitching staff, most relievers and position players off the bench. My all-time favorite team. Ickey Woods is second.
CT: Who have been your favorite sports figures to cover during your time in the New Orleans media?
SA: Saints, Pels, Tigers...in that order
CT: Three things people don't know about New Orleans:
SA: A) 300th Anniversary is coming up soon B) NOLA has more culture than any city in the United States C) It's not just a 24-hour party and Bourbon Street. Water sports are huge down here with the Gulf of Mexico and huge Lake Pontchartrain. We all grow up fishing and skiing...and some of the lucky ones sail as well. I'm pretty lucky.
CT: Saints word association: Payton, Haslett, Bum, Ditka, Mora, Stram, Nolan, Fears. GO!
SA: Payton - Super Bowl champion; Haslett - first playoff win; Bum - cowboy hat, boots, chewing tobacco, Earl Campbell, Ken Stabler; Ditka - over-the-hill-has-been and Ricky Williams in a wedding dress; Mora - first four playoffs in franchise history, woulda coulda shoulda; Stram - fun former super bowl champion and stayed local till death; Nolan - master strategist, first .500 team and then the bottom dropped out; Fears - first Saints coach, former great Rams player (apparently)
CT: Describe your greatest sports video game victory of all time.
SA: Never once played a video game....THE END
Follow Scott Alexander on Twitter: @DScottAlexander
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