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Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Dan Marino's London Calling.


Tuesday, September 4, 2007
From Telegraph.co.uk


NFL Ambassador, HOF-QB, Broadcaster, Weight Watcher Dan Marino was interviewed recently by British Newspaper the Telegraph.”

NFL London
On October 28th 2007, The NFL will play its first regular season game outside of North America. Miami Dolphins will host New York Giants at the new Wembley Stadium, London. This marks the first game of the NFL's new overseas plan.


Sky Sports
are broadcasting more than 100 exclusively live NFL games this season, starting on Thursday and including Miami Dolphins v New York Giants at Wembley.










DAN MARINO

By Gareth A Davies

Earliest sporting memory: Growing up it was always baseball and football for me. I was a big fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers. I remember my dad taking me to see Chuck Knoll's first game as the head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers in the National Football League in 1969. He was there until 1991. We sat at the old Pittsburgh Stadium, in the end zone. Pittsburgh is where I went to college and I ended up playing there. I started playing baseball just before the age of seven, and started little league football in the fifth grade, a year later. {Continued click READ MORE below}



Sports watched: These days, apart from work commitments watching American football, I'm a pretty big fan of golf. There was not the chance really for me to play golf as a kid, but now I follow golf closely. I'm also a basketball fan. I like Miami Heat and I try to go to the games as much as I can. I have watched rugby a little bit and the way they play with no protective equipment makes me have a lot of respect for them.

Sports played: Mainly baseball and football, the two traditional sports in Pittsburgh. It was a way of life and everyone played them. I pitched and played shortstop in baseball. I was drafted by the Kansas City Royals baseball team in the 1977 amateur draft, aged 17, but decided to play college American football. I was going to try and play both in college, but it didn't work out. I was playing summer league baseball and had a knee injury, and the next thing I knew, I was the starting quarterback for the college in my sophomore year and I never looked back.

Why a life in sport, and if not, what would you have done?
I would have been in sport regardless of whether I made it in professional sport. It was a passion of mine and I really went to school for sport. Maybe if I had not had the opportunity to play sport professionally I would have tried to get into media. I do a lot of TV now, for CBS, the national broadcaster and HBO, but it was broadcast entertainment, which I studied for in school.

Toughest part of your sporting life: Knowing that you had to keep your work ethic after years of success. To stay at a high level in professional sport, you can never afford to let that slip. You have to have the desire to get better. I find it is the same in broadcasting now; you need to do your research, make your calls. Preparation, preparation, preparation.

Most memorable sporting moment: Playing in the Super Bowl in 1985. We didn't win, but getting to a Super Bowl is everyone's goal. [In Super Bowl XIX Marino, then at the Miami Dolphins, met Joe Montana and the San Francisco 49ers. The Dolphins, who had 74 rush attempts in the previous two weeks, called only eight hand-offs, placing their chances squarely on Marino. He finished the game with 29 out of 50 pass completions for 318 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. The 38-16 loss ended up being Marino's only Super Bowl appearance.]

Worst sporting moment: Losing the Super Bowl in 1985. There is so much hype around the game and then when you lose it, it knocks you low. Being close three times. I still look back on not winning a Super Bowl with disappointment.

Greatest change for the better since you started playing? The greater athleticism of the players. They are now bigger, faster, and more athletic. From that standpoint, I think I had the ability to transcend into playing today. I played until 2000, having come into the NFL in 1983. Speed and size is the big difference today.

Sporting heroes: I grew up as a Steelers fan, I liked Terry Bradshaw, Joe Green, the entire Steelers team. I lived right in the city, not far from the stadium. I always liked the style of Joe Namath; the New York Jets quarterback. If I look around today in football, in the quarterback position, I admire Peyton Manning. LaDainian Tomlinson is a star in his own right and will be one of the best of all time. And in baseball, Roger Clemens, who is 44 and still pitching at the top level. That is consistency over time. Michael Jordan is also someone I admire in sport. I am a friend and fan of his. He has to rank as one of the most gifted athletes, in terms of ability, ever to play sport.

Favorite stadium and why: The Orange Bowl was just about the best. Then I changed to the Dolphin Stadium where we had the Super Bowl last year. When you played in front of a home crowd it was amazing. It was also interesting when we played the occasional game overseas. I was interested to see how other crowds reacted.

Sporting event you would pay the most to see: The 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid, with the USA's great gold medal triumph in ice hockey over the USSR. I'd like to go back and see Super Bowl III with Namath's New York Jets against the Baltimore Colts.

…and to miss: As I said I played baseball and was even drafted and enjoyed playing it, but if I am honest, I don't watch it much. I'd never watch wrestling. But then again, it's not really a sport.

Question asked most often by the public:
Fans always ask my opinion on whether their team are going to do it this year or that year - the Jets, the Giants. I get that a lot. And requests for my autograph.

…and your answer: It is nice to be recognized. It means something that people enjoyed watching you play. As for how their teams will do, who knows? Sport always springs surprises.

Greatest change you would like to see in the running of your sport: If you weren't allowed to hit the quarterback then I could still play. No, seriously, there is little I'd like to change. The clubs have worked really hard in lifting standards, and the game is as good as ever. But the one thing I would like to change is a bit more publicity about the good guys who do a lot of work for charity. I'd also like to see the introduction of bigger draft squads, because of the injury factors throughout an NFL season.

How is American football covered in the media: Having worked on TV for seven years, I think that we do a great job. The coverage is engaging for the fan, with highlights, the timing of matches and how they produce shows. We have a number of well-informed writers on the sport, too, and one thing which helps the fan is that those writers get access to the locker room and all the coaches.

Sporting motto: When I was a player, it was always 'work as hard as you can and play every day as if it were your last'.

Who would you like to invite to dinner and why? Just because of my love of sport and my hobby, I'd include Tiger Woods. I played golf with him when he was 14. Did I win? Well, that would be telling, wouldn't it? If he did beat me, I'm not going to tell anyone. I'd invite Martin Luther King, President John F Kennedy and Barbara Eden, from the film, I dream of Jeannie (1965), because she's a great actress.

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk/davies

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