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|| SportsShooter.com: News Item: Posted 2002-10-01

Leading Off: Big Balls Awards
By Robert Hanashiro, Sports Shooter

Photo by
I've got big balls
I've got big balls
And they're such big balls…
But we've got the biggest balls of them all

AC/DC
1981

Anyone that knows me well knows I dislike awards. But I guess deep down inside, I'm just like every one else out there: I dream about a tuxedo clad Neil Leifer standing on a stage in front of thousands of people opening a sealed envelop and saying "And the winner is … Robert Deutsch?"

I guess maybe it's not a dream, but a nightmare.

Photo by

The bad Notre Dame credential agreement.
Seriously, awards have a place, recognizing excellence. After careful thought and polling experts in the field … me … I announce the first "Sports Shooter Big Balls Award."

Recent posts on the mighty SportsShooter.com Message Board led me to look into a credential use agreement the University of Notre Dame is handing out with its football credentials.

As we all know, restrictive, rights-grabbing credential use agreements are nothing new. But the "Fighting Irish" version tops them all:

"By accepting this credential, the individual and the individual's organization hereby agree that all right and title to the copyright in any work created by the individual and / or the individual's organization by recording any portion of the event in any audio, visual, or audiovisual media shall be deemed the sole property of the University of Notre Dame.

Upon request of the University, the individual and/ or the individual's organization shall execute all necessary document to effectuate ownership of said copyright in the University of Notre Dame. Any organization wishing to use film, pictures or tape in any manner (including transmission over the Internet) other than as permitted below, must obtain prior written permission for such use from the University of Notre Dame. Furthermore, the permissions granted below shall not be assigned, transferred or otherwise disposed of to any third party.'

I gotta give Notre Dame credit: this thing is written in pretty plain English, devoid of most of the legalese gobbledygook most of these documents have. There is no translation needed when the "Fighting Irish" inform anyone covering its games that "any audio, visual, or audiovisual media shall be deemed the sole property of the University of Notre Dame."
But to Sports Shooter, the condition that is the ballsy-iest EVER is where Notre Dame, after claiming the ownership to our photos, says WE have to do the paperwork to transfer the copyright to Notre Dame!

Now THAT takes BIG BALLS!

So here's to you Notre Dame University … bask in the spotlight of being the first winner of the "Sports Shooter Big Balls Awards."

We have a runner up to the Big Balls Award … after careful consideration the finalist were:

Photo by

The San Diego State Marshall Faulk bobble head.
- Fox Sports. For shifting the UCLA - San Diego State football game from a 6 pm start to 11 am. It was Marshall Faulk bobble-head day … I mean morning … and the Aztecs were expecting 50,000. They got 30,000. Another example of the tail wagging the dog.

- Jim Gordon, editor of the NPPA's "News Photographer Magazine". When you see the cover of the upcoming issue, you'll know what I mean. Daring, provocative and ballsy.

And the runner-up for the first Sports Shooter Big Balls Award goes to … Blockbuster Video!

I know in this day and age of stores carrying only the hits and what sells the most, what Blockbuster is doing is helping speed up the cultural degradation of this country.

I recently went with my wife Deanna and daughter Emma to a presentation of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat" staged by a local children's theater group. While this is not the best musical from Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, for children's theater it was lively and fun.

After that evening, Emma became very interested in musicals. So we stuck a deal: once a week we would go to Blockbuster and rent a classical musical that had been made into a movie.

We started off with "Oklahoma" (with Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones); next "Annie" and then "The Music Man" (one of my all-time favorites with Robert Preston and Shirley Jones).

But last week when Emma and I walked down to Blockbuster to rent "The King & I" we discovered something alarming … NO MORE MUSICALS!

Blockbuster is phasing out videotapes altogether and the first VHS tapes to go? You guessed it … musicals!

We asked why there weren't any musicals on the shelves and one of the clerks, "Joey", told us that Blockbuster is "phasing out movies people don't care much about" to make room for more DVDs. When Deanna questioned the wisdom of abandoning an entire genre of film (what? No more Rodgers & Hammerstein? Or Leonard Bernstein? Or Lerner & Lowe?) … the clerk replied that we could buy the musicals they once rented for $4.99!

So I went back to Blockbuster and did a little checking. Here's what they have instead of musicals for your Saturday evening viewing pleasure:

- "Queen of the Damned" ("erotic, gothic and exciting" says WBAI-FM in NY… they have 28 copies!)

- "Mars Needs Women ("WARNING! Sex-starved spacemen on the prowl for bodacious Earth babes!")

- "A Nightmare on Elm Street 5" ("From tomb to womb Freddy Krueger's back…" they have 3 copies)

Photo by
- "dead sexy" ("Killer looks, naked ambition" staring Shannon Tweed … I think she'll expect an Oscar nomination next spring for this one!)

So here's to Blockbuster as the Sports Shooter Big Balls runner-up for depriving us of "My Fair Lady", "A Chorus Line", "Man of La Mancha", "West Side Story" and "Fiddler on the Roof" … I guess we'll have to cuddle up with "Mars Needs Women"!

* * *

One month to go before the fabulous Sports Shooter Workshop & Luau 2002! And this issue features articles from three of the Workshop & Luau's faculty … Peter Read Miller, Bob Larson and Trent Nelson. Peter kicks off a new regular feature for Sports Shooter, "In The Bag"; Bob goes on the road to Hawaii with the De La Salle High football team and Trent gives us the lowdown on the new Verizon high-speed wireless data service.

Also we feature Mark Buckner, the St. Louis Blues team photographer, writing about new safety nets at NHL arenas, Dean Coppola writes about keeping fit … we have Mongo and PhotoDude … what's not to love?

So sit back, adjust the brightness of that monitor … "Hey Now!" set the VCR to tape "The Larry Sanders Show" on Bravo … and enjoy Sports Shooter v.47!




Related Links:
Dead Sexy (DVD, 2001)

Related Email Addresses: 
Robert Hanashiro: bert@sportsshooter.com

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