If you are having Super Bowl withdrawal like many of us, here are some ways to reconnect with one of the most memorable championship games - in any sport - that we have seen. Not just because of the dramatic blackout, but also because of the quality of play.
Here are some South Asian connections for this year's big game, starting with a chance for you to listen in to our fifth annual SAJA-SAMMA Super Bowl webcast, presented with BlogTalkRadio (we've crossed more than 2 million listens over the last five years):
From our email earlier in the weekend:
SAJA, the South Asian Journalists Association, and SAMMA, South Asians in Media, Marketing and Entertainment Association, present their fifth annual BlogTalkRadio conversation about the biggest day in American sports - from a South Asian perspective.
Join us as hosts Vijay Setlur (@VijaySetlur), Raakhee Mirchandani (@raakstar) & Sree Sreenivasan (@sree) chat with three ESPN anchors Adnan Virk (@adnanESPN) and Zubin Mehenti; Amar Shah (@amarshahism), digital features editor of NFL.com (see the Super Bowl trailer he wrote and produced: http://on.nfl.com/11qSbWA) as well as with filmmaker Evan Rosenfeld (@evansss), who is directing "Birth of a Sport," about the Elite Football League of India, which is the first professional American football league in South Asia, with teams in five cities in India, two in Sri Lanka and one in Pakistan.
Meanwhile, more South Asians connected to the NFL...
Other South Asian NFL notes: SAJAer Aditi Kinkhabwala - @akinkhabwala - who joined us as a guest from the Dallas Super Bowl when she was with WSJ, is now a reporter for the NFL Network; Manish Mehta is the NY Jets beat reporter for NY Daily News; Fellow NFL employees include Manish Jha, SVP, Digital, NFL; Vishal Shah, VP, Digital Media, NFL; On the team side: Paraag Marathe is chief operating officer of the San Francisco 49ers and has played a pivotal role in the business side of the operations. This season, Shripal Shah rejoined the Washington Redskins as senior VP and chief strategy officer. And, of course, the new owner - and most famous moustache - on the Jacksonville Jaguars is Shahid Khan (see the glowing "60 Minutes" profile: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50134050n
In addition to all this, it was great to see Virk anchor the 10 pm ET ESPN SportsCenter, doing NBA highlights while he waited for the game to finish; Mehenti anchoring the 11 pm ET ESPNews; and Kevin Negandhi anchoring the 9 am ET SportsCenter (he was to join us again on the webcast, but was under the weather during our webcast, so couldn't make it). For some reason, he chose the ESPN audience over the SAJA audience!
A friend posted this comment on Facebook "Great broadcast Sree, Vijay, Rakhee and all the sportscasters and NFL folk involved.....Fascinating to hear about Evan's film on and discuss American football league in India and the South Asians involved in football....etc....Thank you SAJA and SAMMA for hosting...."
Below are photos of Virk and Mehenti in action, including a shot of Virk giving NBA highlights while I watched the Super Bowl picture-in-picture, plus one of Mehenti at the start of his show.
Some Super Bowl and other sports coverage by SAJAforum over the years:
- See the 2010 Super Bowl desi live blog here.
- See the 2009 Super Bowl desi live blog here.
- See the 2008 Super Bowl desi live blog here.
- See 2007 post about a single Bud Light ad.
- Listen to 2009 webcast with Brandon Chillar, the last South Asian to play in the NFL (Rams, Packers); there have been three South Asians in all, along with Sanjay Beach and Bobby Singh
- Negandhi and Virk explaining the biggest story of the day (2012 - not the Super Bowl).
- Negandhi and Virk anchor SportsCenter together (2010).
- WEBCAST: Raj Mathai, one of the first South Asian sportscasters in the U.S. and sports director of NBC Bay Area
- WEBCAST: Sunil Gulati, head of US Soccer Federation.
- WEBCAST: Rinku Singh and Dinesh Kumar Patel, two non-baseball players from India, signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates to a minor-league contract
Post your comments below.