Billie Jean King hopes to ‘make a difference’ as Dodgers minority owner

first_img How Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling topped the baseball podcast empire PreviousTennis icon Billie Jean King, left, and her partner Ilana Kloss take a selfie during Friday’s Dodgers game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. King and Kloss have joined the team’s ownership group. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker, Contributing Photographer)Dodgers infielder Chase Utley talks with tennis icon Billie Jean King, who is the newest member of the team’s ownership group on the field before Friday’s game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. Both graduated from Long Beach Poly High. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CA – SEPTEMBER 21: Los Angeles Dodgers Owner & Chairman Mark Walter the newest member of the ownership group, Billie Jean King with her own jersey during a press conference at Dodger Stadium on September 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsDodgers owner and chairman Mark Walter, left, and Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten, right, pose with tennis champions Billie Jean King, second from left, and her partner Ilana Kloss, during the press conference announcing the addition of the duo to the team’s ownership group on Friday at Dodger Stadium. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Tennis champion Billie Jean King speaks during a news conference where the Los Angeles Dodgers announced that she and her partner Ilana Kloss are joining the team ownership group in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Los Angeles Dodgers owner and chairman Mark Walter, left, introduces to the baseball team ownership group tennis champion Billie Jean King at a news conference in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Tennis champions Billie Jean King and her partner Ilana Kloss pose for photographers on the field after a news conference that added the two to the Los Angeles Dodgers ownership group in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018.(AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Los Angeles Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten, right, and owner and chairman Mark Walter, left, introduce to the baseball team ownership group, tennis champions Billie Jean King, second from left, and her partner, Ilana Kloss, at a news conference in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. Pending approval by the WNBA, the two are also expected to have an ownership interest in the Los Angeles Sparks. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Tennis champion Billie Jean King displays a poster of singer Elton John, from a 1975 Dodger Stadium concert, after a news conference in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. King and her partner, Ilana Kloss, have taken an undisclosed stake in the Dodgers at the invitation of owner Mark Walter. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Tennis champion Billie Jean King, center, gestures with her partner Ilana Kloss, right, at a news conference to introduce them as part of the Los Angeles Dodgers ownership group by owner and chairman Mark Walter, left, in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)LOS ANGELES, CA – SEPTEMBER 21: Billie Jean King who is the newest member of the Los Angeles Dodgers ownership group shows off her custom blue Adidas sneakers before the game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium on September 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)Los Angeles Dodgers owner and chairman Mark Walter, left, and Dodgers president & CEO Stan Kasten, right, introduce to the baseball team ownership group, tennis champion Billie Jean King, second from left, and her partner Ilana Kloss at a news conference in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)LOS ANGELES, CA – SEPTEMBER 21: Billie Jean King who is the newest member of the team’s ownership group waves as she leave the room after an introductory press conference before the game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium on September 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)Tennis champion Billie Jean King, center, gestures with her partner, Ilana Kloss, during a news conference to introduce them as part of the ownership group of the Los Angeles Dodgers by team owner Mark Walter, left, in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Longtime partners Billie Jean King and Ilana Kloss who have joined the Dodgers ownership group, speak to the media during a press conference Friday afternoon at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)Dodgers infielder Chase Utley talks with tennis icon Billie Jean King who is the newest member of the team’s ownership group on the field before Friday’s game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. Both are graduates of Long Beach Poly High. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)Tennis icon Billie Jean King, left, and her partner Ilana Kloss take a selfie during Friday’s Dodgers game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. King and Kloss have joined the team’s ownership group. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker, Contributing Photographer)Dodgers infielder Chase Utley talks with tennis icon Billie Jean King, who is the newest member of the team’s ownership group on the field before Friday’s game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. Both graduated from Long Beach Poly High. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)NextShow Caption1 of 16Dodgers infielder Chase Utley talks with tennis icon Billie Jean King, who is the newest member of the team’s ownership group on the field before Friday’s game against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. Both graduated from Long Beach Poly High. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)ExpandLOS ANGELES — One day in ownership and she’s already trying to meddle with the lineup.“You gonna play tonight?” Billie Jean King said when she saw fellow Long Beach Poly graduate Chase Utley in the audience at Friday’s press conference officially announcing that King and her partner, Ilana Kloss, had joined the Dodgers ownership group.King and Kloss have been approved by MLB. They are awaiting approval at the next WNBA ownership meeting before also joining the ownership group of the L.A. Sparks.No financial details were announced and it is not known what percentage stake King and Kloss will have. Both are former tennis players with extensive experience as team owners and league officials with World Team Tennis. King said their first order of business in joining the Dodgers is “learning, a lot of learning.”Sign up for our Inside the Dodgers newsletter. Be the best Dodger fan you can be by getting daily intel on your favorite team. Subscribe here.“We really hope that we can make a difference and make a difference that’s meaningful, that’s impactful,” said King who said she and younger brother Randy Moffitt “grew up bleeding Dodger blue” from the team’s first season in Los Angeles. Moffitt later pitched in the majors for teams that included the rival San Francisco Giants, or as King put it, “the wrong team.”“We’re very big on inclusion and we hope we can help in that area and also the LGBTQ-plus community. … It’s such an honor. I think it’s great that as women we’re part of this and I hope we can make an impact. I think it sends a very strong message.”PITCHING CHANGEThere was “a little matchup component” in the decision to switch Ross Stripling and Rich Hill in the rotation, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. Stripling started Friday with Hill pushed back to Saturday.In the short term, Hill will now miss next week’s Arizona series. He has allowed 15 runs on 20 hits (including six home runs) in 14 innings over three starts against the Diamondbacks this season.Hill now lines up to start the series opener in San Francisco next weekend. Fire danger is on Dave Roberts’ mind as Dodgers head to San Francisco Dodgers hit seven home runs, sweep Colorado Rockies Cody Bellinger homer gives Dodgers their first walkoff win of season Dodgers’ Max Muncy trying to work his way out of slow start In the longer term, it could signal Stripling’s consideration for a potential playoff rotation against the Atlanta Braves. The Braves’ team batting average and OPS drop significantly against right-handed pitching.DODGER LEGENDSHall of Fame broadcaster Jaime Jarrin became the 12th inductee into the Dodgers’ Ring of Honor Friday night.Eleven of the 12 inductees are Hall of Famers (Jim Gilliam is the lone exception), a precedent the Dodgers have set for retiring player’s uniform numbers. Kasten said the team has long been trying to create a way to honor former players who made their marks with the Dodgers but have not been inducted into baseball’s Hall of Fame.So Friday, the team announced the creation of a “Legends of Dodgers Baseball” program with Don Newcombe, Steve Garvey and Fernando Valenzuela as the inaugural inductees. The trio will be officially inducted at some point in 2019.Kasten acknowledged the “Legends” program is just one of “many new developments” the team is planning before hosting the 2020 All-Star Game. That could mean further structural changes to Dodger Stadium as well as “the creation of a permanent home to celebrate” the franchise’s history. Kasten would not say Friday if that would mean the creation of a team hall of fame and museum at the stadium, a project that has been discussed many times over the years.UP NEXTPadres (RHP Jacob Nix, 2-3, 5.75 ERA) at Dodgers (LHP Rich Hill, 9-5, 4.02 ERA), Saturday, 6:10 p.m., SportsNet LA (where available)Related Articles Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

Why Urban Meyer coaching the Cowboys makes more sense than a return to college

first_imgJerry Jones says Jason Garrett will remain the coach but I can confirm a very real interest in Urban Meyer. In fact, I’m told Stephen Jones spoke with him recently. Lincoln Riley remains a strong candidate & file this name as a possibility Clemson OC Tony Elliott per sources.— Jane Slater (@SlaterNFL) December 6, 2019Meyer, 55, retired after seven successful seasons at Ohio State in 2018. He’s won three national championships between stints at Florida and Ohio State, and he did that with a 187-32 record. Here are five reasons why this isn’t a bad idea for Big D, and why the Cowboys gig makes more sense for Meyer than any available at the college ranks.MORE: Ranking the Cowboys’ Jason Garrett replacement candidatesJerry Jones’ winning history with college coaches Jones was a co-captain on Arkansas’ national championship team in 1964, and he found the most success in Dallas with his first two hires.  Jimmy Johnson had a 52-9 record at Miami from 1984-88 and won a national championship in 1987 before taking the job with the Cowboys. He won two Super Bowls and was succeeded by Barry Switzer, who was 157-29-4 and won three national championships at Oklahoma. Switzer added that third Super Bowl.  Johnson and Switzer combined for an 84-60 record with the Cowboys over nine seasons. Garrett is 83-66. The difference was the playoff success. Johnson and Switzer were 14-6 in the postseason.  Meyer, like those two coaches, was a hyper-successful coach in the college game at programs flush with NFL talent. The Buckeyes have produced the second-most draft picks and first-round picks this decade, behind only Alabama.Urban Meyer doesn’t need college footballThe fact USC retained Clay Helton tips this hand.  Meyer does not need to go back to college. There is nothing left for him to prove. He built national championship powers at Florida and Ohio State, but both of those stints were not without controversy.  There were 31 player arrests during his time at Florida. He was suspended three games in 2018 for mishandling domestic abuse allegations involving wide receivers coach Zach Smith. Meyer retired from Ohio State because of health reasons, and that track record would make it more difficult to land a job at the next school that could produce a national championship.  That’s a short list of schools. Meyer might not have gone to USC even if offered the job. Notre Dame has never lined up, and Florida State’s athletic director said they weren’t interested.  That’s OK. Meyer does not need to need to go back to campus.  MORE: Troy Aikman rips Jerry Jones for management for CowboysThe NFL poses a real challengeMeyer could build a staff around the talent in Dallas.   The Cowboys have talent that has underachieved this season. Dak Prescott leads the NFL in passing yards with 4,122. Ezekiel Elliott, who starred for Meyer at Ohio State, is fourth in the league with 1,071 yards. Amari Cooper ranks fourth in the league with 1,054 receiving yards.  Dallas has the triplets. They just need to keep them under contract and make a real run at the Super Bowl before the window starts to shrink. Meyer was a master motivator at the college level. Could he do the same with Dallas?  It’s worth a try. Ohio State pro days were must-attend events for NFL coaches. He has connections, and he could use those to build an excellent coaching staff. Remember: Meyer hired Ryan Day — a former NFL assistant who has enhanced that model at Ohio State now with the Buckeyes ranked No. 1 in the country.Urban Meyer can return to TV any time  If Meyer were to leave, perhaps the biggest hit would be to the “Big Noon Kickoff” on Fox. Meyer has been an Emmy-worthy studio analyst for the show, and he is a big reason why ESPN’s “College GameDay” had competition in the noon hour this season.  Meyer, in one season, has matched what Tony Romo has done in the booth at CBS while simultaneously becoming Jon Gruden. Every time there is a major coaching vacancy, Meyer is the first name that pops up.  The studio, however, does not have a real scoreboard. That is the urge Meyer spoke about with Cleveland.com this morning about the challenge of not coaching.  “I’ve been in a fight for 33 years, and now you’re not in that fight,” Meyer told Cleveland.com. “So how do you fulfill that fight? And I feel that every morning. Every morning.” The NFL offers the ultimate challenge of football at the highest level.NFL COACHING HOT SEAT TIERSCowboys’ Jason Garrett, Browns’ Freddie Kitchens could be fired nextUrban Meyer to Dallas is worth the risk  How would this turn out? Johnson, Switzer and Pete Carroll are the only three coaches who have won both a national championship and a Super Bowl. In his second NFL stint, Carroll is 99-56-1 with Seattle and has won nine or more games in eight straight seasons. The Seahawks have made two Super Bowl appearances.  That would be the best-case scenario for Meyer in Dallas.  Of course, it didn’t work out for other coaches. Nick Saban was 15-17 in two seasons with the Dolphins. Steve Spurrier was 13-24-1 with the Redskins. Those coaches did not have the talent that Meyer would have in Dallas, however.  Meyer’s biggest rival in college, Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh, was 44-19-1 in the NFL. This could be a chance for Meyer to prove he is a better coach at both levels.  Jones could always follow the NFL’s trend of going young with Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley, the hottest name around any coaching rumor, based on his reputation with quarterbacks or Tony Elliott, a long-time Clemson assistant who has been waiting for that first head coaching job.  Meyer, however, might be better equipped to handle the pressure of the most-visible head coaching job in North American sports. Jones and Meyer both have egos, but sometimes that works when they share a common goal. Dallas hasn’t won a Super Bowl since 1996.   The Cowboys still in first in the NFC East despite falling to 6-7 Thursday, their third consecutive loss, but that sub-.500 record led to even more speculation that the end for head coach Jason Garrett is near. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has stuck with Garrett for 10 seasons, and that has produced two playoff victories.  That, in turn, has led to more rumors about former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer, along with other college coaches such as Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley and Clemson offensive coordinator Tony Elliott being linked to the job.   Is it risky? Of course. For Meyer, it’s time to take that NFL challenge once and for all. This is the best situation NFL-wise for Meyer, unless he prefers to chase the ghost of Paul Brown and take over in Cleveland. But it’s not off base to say, given Meyer’s Ohio roots, the Cowboys job would come with less pressure than a Browns job. It’s worth it. For Jones, it’s time to go back to the college coach. He has tried Chan Gailey, Dave Campo, Bill Parcells, Wade Phillips and Garrett since Switzer’s final season in 1997. If it does not work out with Meyers, coaches such as Riley likely would still be there in two or three years. It’s time to make this move now. There won’t be another chance.last_img read more