Locker Room Prep Talk never stops talking

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Locker Room Prep Talk never stops talking

First of all, I'm not computer-friendly. All I want to know about a computer is how to turn it on, how to print a story, how to obtain a printout of the story and how to shut off the computer. If anything conflicts with that process, I'm in trouble.

Secondly, I never cease to be amazed and awed by the Internet. So much information at your fingertips, sometimes inaccurate and saturated with unsubstantiated rumors, but easier to access than thumbing through an encyclopedia or thesaurus or even a dictionary.

Take my old blog, for example. I didn't know what a blog was until a few years ago. Then, in 2007, my old employers at the Chicago Sun-Times asked me to start a blog. "Locker Room Prep Talk" was born in November 2007. Until December 2010, I posted as many as 10 to 20 stories per month about high school sports in Illinois.

That's the thing: my last story on the archive is dated Dec. 29, 2010. Since then, Locker Room Prep Talk has taken on a life of its own.

Actually, there was one more story. The following week I posted a story on Simeon basketball star Jabari Parker. It was deleted by an editor after one day online because he claimed some readers protested some of the content included in the story.

I wrote about Parker's relationship with a Jewish basketball player from Glenbrook North. They are the best of friends and play on the same AAU team. Parker attended the youngster's Bar Mitzvah. It took up all of two sentences in a 1,200-word story.

When I was informed by the prep editor that the editor had ordered that the story be deleted--he never talked to me about the issue--I quit on the spot. I have never had any relationship with the Sun-Times since. After 33 years, I felt the paper at least owed me an explanation.

But "Locker Room Prep Talk" goes on and on and on. Google it up and there is it--every story I ever wrote, from 2007 to 2010. And nearly every day, a reader taps into the website, reads a story and emails a comment. Some days, there are as many as four or five comments.

Incredibly, that's how I finally found Homer Thurman. After searching for the former multi-sport star from Bloom Township in Chicago Heights for more than 30 years, a reader in Hawaii emailed on the "Locker Room Prep Talk" website that Homer had died in Honolulu on June 27.

Ken Nelson, an old friend of Thurman's dating to the late 1970s, had begun an online search for Thurman's background and discovered a story in "Locker Room Prep Talk" and my recent story for CSNChicago.com on Thurman's induction into the Illinois Basketball Hall of Fame and Museum in Pinckneyville.

People from here, there and everywhere, including Hawaii, somehow find Locker Room Prep Talk on the Internet and check out the archive, then comment about a story that was posted sometime in the last 10 years.

Most recently, someone recalled my story on the late basketball star Billy Harris of Dunbar, noting that he had played many days at Dunbar's gym with Crane star Arthur Sivels. He said he rated Sivels, a playground legend, "just slightly above" Isiah Thomas, Tim Hardaway, Kevin Porter, Ronnie Lester, Mo Cheeks, Derrick Rose, Rickey Green and Michael Poole.

And a former Evanston player, having read an archival story on legendary Evanston coach Murney Lazier that was written so long ago that it had to be dusted off, praised the teachings of his former coach, pointing out that when he went to college he realized that Lazier had taught him fundamentals that weren't being taught at the next level.

It is unfortunate that the Sun-Times made a decision that forced the termination of "Locker Room Prep Talk." Readers can keep up with the same subject matter in the Prep section of CSNChicago.com every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

In the meantime, "Locker Room Prep Talk" continues to take on a life of its own. In recent posts, another former city basketball player recalled Sivels, Larry Cross, Lloyd Walton and Jerome Freeman, a football fan recalled Deerfield's 1973 football team and coach Paul Adams, a former teammate of Hales Franciscan star Sam Puckett said "there never will be another Sam Puckett," and Mike Matthews, a starter on Hirsch's 1973 state championship basketball team, recalled the late Billy Harris.

A St. Laurence football fan claimed the Vikings' 1979 football team, with Ron Prusa, Mike McQuinn, Mike Berggren and Rick Gregus, was more talented than the more celebrated 1974 squad of Pete Allard, Jeff Pearson, Tim Grunhard and Paul Glonek.

Several city basketball fans chimed in with comments about former King star Jamie Brandon, one of only five players ever to score more than 3,000 points in state history and perhaps the best player never to compete in the NBA. And one fan argued that many Fab Five teams could be assembled but he would start with Cazzie Russell, Isiah Thomas, Derrick Rose, Mark Aguirre and Dale Kelley.

Talk about one way to start an argument or a debate. Sounds like more grist for Locker Room Prep Talk to me.

CSN Chicago will live stream Cubs, White Sox games in 2017

CSN Chicago will live stream Cubs, White Sox games in 2017

CSN will live stream Cubs and White Sox games plus pre and postgame shows throughout the 2017 season.

This is thrilling news for all Chicago baseball fans and comes at an absolutely perfect time for a Cubs fanbase that will spend the rest of the year reveling in the 2016 World Series championship.

White Sox fans will also gain more opportunities to get up-close looks at the future as the South Siders continue on with their rebuild.

Both teams and the pre and post shows will be streamed on CSNChicago.com and the NBC Sports app.

CSN already streams Bulls and Blackhawks games and pre/post shows.

"We are thrilled to launch live streaming of our Chicago White Sox and Cubs telecasts beginning this MLB season," said Phil Bedella, Vice President/General Manager of CSN Chicago. "With live streaming currently offered for our Bulls and Blackhawks telecasts, the addition of MLB streaming further illustrates our commitment to provide our viewers with the most in-depth and compelling Cubs and White Sox content in and out of the home and on any device."

The complete CSN broadcasting schedules for Cubs and White Sox telecasts will be released over the next couple weeks.

"We are very pleased that our partners at CSN will be able to provide fans with the opportunity to watch the White Sox anywhere," White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said. "Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for fans to watch their White Sox, regardless of where they are or what they are doing.  Sports fans deserve to see all the action all season long."

"After such a historic season, we are thrilled Cubs fans will be able to stream games on their choice of device, either inside or outside the home," Cubs president of business operations Crane Kenney said. "This access has been years in the making for our fans, but the timing is awfully good given the excitement around the 2017 campaign."

For more information, check out the complete press release.

CSN announces live streaming of Cubs, White Sox games during 2017 MLB season

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CSN announces live streaming of Cubs, White Sox games during 2017 MLB season

LIVE CUBS/WHITE SOX GAMES, “CUBS/WHITE SOX PREGAME LIVE” AND “CUBS/WHITE SOX POSTGAME LIVE,” TO BE ACCESSIBLE ON THE NBC SPORTS APP AND VIA CSNCHICAGO.COM

LIVE STREAMING SERVICE TO BE MADE AVAILABLE ON PC’S/TABLETS/MOBILE DEVICES/CONNECTED TVs AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO CSN CHICAGO SUBSCRIBERS

Chicago, IL (January 19, 2017) – The Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox will be available in more places and on more screens than ever before as CSN Chicago (CSN), the home for the most games and the most comprehensive coverage of the north/southsiders, has announced that the network’s Cubs and White Sox games will be accessible live via CSNChicago.com and the NBC Sports app to authenticated CSN Chicago subscribers beginning with the 2017 MLB season.  In addition, CSN Chicago will also offer live streams of every edition of Cubs/White Sox Pregame Live and Postgame Live throughout the season.

Beginning with this year’s MLB regular season, the new live streaming offering will be available without any additional costs as an added value to participating providers of CSN Chicago and their subscribers.  This initiative advances NBCUniversal’s implementation of “TV Everywhere,” which strives to make quality content available to authenticated customers both in and out of the home, and on multiple platforms.

“We are thrilled to launch live streaming of our Chicago White Sox and Cubs telecasts beginning this MLB season,” said Phil Bedella, Vice President/General Manager of CSN Chicago.  “With live streaming currently offered for our Bulls and Blackhawks telecasts, the addition of MLB streaming further illustrates our commitment to provide our viewers with the most in-depth and compelling Cubs and White Sox content in and out of the home and on any device.”

“We are very pleased that our partners at CSN will be able to provide fans with the opportunity to watch the White Sox anywhere,” added White Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf. “Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for fans to watch their White Sox, regardless of where they are or what they are doing.  Sports fans deserve to see all the action all season long.”

“After such a historic season, we are thrilled Cubs fans will be able to stream games on their choice of device, either inside or outside the home,” said Crane Kenney, Cubs President, Business Operations.  “This access has been years in the making for our fans, but the timing is awfully good given the excitement around the 2017 campaign.”

To access the video player, viewers can visit CSNChicago.com on their PC, or download the NBC Sports app. The NBC Sports app is available on Apple iOS, Android and select Samsung devices, as well as on Amazon Fire, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Win10, and Xbox. Authenticated CSN Chicago subscribers will also have the ability to access live Cubs and White Sox coverage, even when traveling outside of their region, provided they are within the United States. 

For a full list of carriers and more information about CSN Chicago’s live streaming service, viewers are urged to visit the following link: http://www.csnchicago.com/live-faq .  CSN’s addition of Cubs and White Sox streaming follows the 2014 introduction of Chicago Bulls live NBA streaming, along with this past November’s introduction of Chicago Blackhawks live NHL streaming.  NOTE: CSN Chicago will be announcing its complete 2017 Cubs and White Sox regular season schedules in the coming weeks.