NFL | KCUR

NFL

Steinar Engeland / Unsplash

Segment 1: How sports journalists are adapting to a lack of sporting events.

The coronavirus has proven to be a huge disruption in the world of athletics. Aside from professional teams suspending seasons (to the dismay of thousands), sports journalists are also facing a major shift in how they find and report stories.

Steinar Engeland / Unsplash

Segment 1: How sports journalists are adapting to a lack of sporting events.

The coronavirus has proven to be a huge disruption in the world of athletics. Aside from professional teams suspending seasons (to the dismay of thousands), sports journalists are also facing a major shift in how they find and report stories.

Julie Denesha / KCUR 89.3 file photo

The Chiefs are champions, and fans are still flying high. But now that the confetti has settled it’s time to confront a difficult question: What’s in a name? Commentator Victor Wishna offers a modest proposal in this post-Super Bowl edition of 'A Fan’s Notes.'

Spring training is underway. March and its madness loom. But many of us are still stuck on our Chiefs. After 50 years, three weeks is hardly enough time to savor a Super Bowl championship.

K-State Sports

Scott Frantz has been quietly preparing for what lies ahead since Kansas State’s football season ended at a bowl game on Dec. 31. It’s a future that could change NFL history.

Frantz, an offensive lineman from Lawrence, is gay. His teammates and the Wildcat faithful have known that for three years. But not since Mizzou’s Michael Sam has a college football player been out publicly before seeking a pro career. 

Julie Denesha / KCUR 89.3

No more waiting, Kansas City: The Chiefs are Super Bowl champions again, and it’s time to party.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Kansas City Chiefs fans are among the tens of thousands of people pouring into South Florida this week, joining Midwest expats already here for a celebration of the team’s first Super Bowl appearance in half a century.

Jason Wickersheim / Two West Advertising, TwoWest.com

Kansas City may be keeping plans for a potential Super Bowl victory parade tightly under wraps, but that's not stopping downtown businesses from preparing for a historically large gathering downtown next week. 

Multiple businesses and organizations with offices downtown told KCUR they have been given word to prepare for a parade Wednesday, February 5, if the Chiefs win Super Bowl LIV on Sunday.

Segment 1: The link between sports and social justice is stronger than some people think.

The fight to end discrimination against black folks is ongoing, and Harry Edwards, who has spent the majority of his life as an activist and leader in the world of sports, says there are no final victories in such a dynamic struggle. From Muhammad Ali to Colin Kaepernick, he has played a role in some of the greatest stories in athletics and activism. 

Jose Lepe / AP Photo

Katie Sowers’ childhood passion for football has carried her from Hesston, Kansas, to Miami — and the Super Bowl, where she’ll be the first woman to ever coach in the title game.

Sowers is an assistant coach on offense for the rival San Francisco 49ers, and will be in the skybox with the other coaches strategizing against the Kansas City Chiefs, and the city she loves so much the skyline is tattooed on her left forearm. She’s also the first openly LGBTQ coach in the NFL and, thus, Super Bowl LIV.

Segment 1: A winning NFL franchise puts money in the pockets of its host economy.

Kansas Citians have more to celebrate than just an exciting season for the Chiefs. One study shows when an NFL team is successful, fans in the home city are happier and more productive. That increased productivity creates an economic impact of up to $100 per capita but don't be calling the Chiefs to collect! 

Courtesy / Stram family

The Kansas City Chiefs are preparing to play in the franchise's first Super Bowl since Pro Football Hall of Fame head coach Hank Stram led the team to a title in Super Bowl IV 50 years ago.

Stram's sons — Dale, now 64; Stu, 62; and Gary, 58 — were three of the six children raised by Phyllis and Hank Stram in Prairie Village in the 1960s and 1970s.

Texas Tech Athletics

It turns out, Patrick Mahomes isn’t the first Chiefs player from Texas Tech University to star in a Super Bowl.

That honor goes to E.J. Holub, who is the only player in NFL history to start a Super Bowl on offense and defense. In Super Bowl IV, he snapped the football to the game’s Most Valuable Player, Len Dawson, as the Chiefs’ starting center.

Four years earlier, he started at linebacker in the very first Super Bowl against the Green Bay Packers.

AP Photo/CHarlie Riedel

Your soundtrack for getting ready for Super Bowl LIV could start with tight end Travis Kelce's pick, "(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!)" by the Beastie Boys, which he sang (or, rather, screamed) at fans after Kansas City's win in the AFC Championship game.

Or the stadium rock anthem and Queen classic, "We Are The Champions."

But it might be a little early for that...

Brynn Anderson / AP

The Kansas City Chiefs are headed to the Super Bowl for the first time in fifty years. That’s prompting many fans to consider a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Miami to see their team play in person at Hard Rock Stadium on Feb. 2.

Thinking of going to Miami for the big game? Here are some numbers you may want to consider.

Well — yes! — the Chiefs are going to the Super Bowl for the first time in half a century. But why does that matter? Commentator Victor Wishna offers just one reason, in this long-in-coming edition of 'A Fan’s Notes.'

I want to tell you a story. There are thousands like it. On Sunday, inside Arrowhead Stadium, there were about 74,000 stories. But this is mine.

Segment 1: Kansas City's journey toward greater inclusivity takes one step forward, two steps back.

The state of diversity and inclusion in Kansas City is shaping up to be one of this year's most tenuous storylines. We previewed both positive and negative issues facing marginalized communities in the metro, including diversity training for law enforcement and seemingly discriminatory legislative efforts.

Associated Press

Not since Len Dawson guided the Kansas City Chiefs to the Super Bowl IV title has the team had such an elite quarterback at the centerpiece of the offense and the team. 

But even Patrick Mahomes, who’s been the starting QB since 2018, knows he’s not the sum of all the parts on offense and defense. Here are five guys not named Mahomes who also bring something special to the Chiefs:

Segment 1: The Chiefs are the 2020 AFC Champions.

The "loudest stadium in the world" went wild last night after their team defeated the Tennesse Titans and earned a spot in the Feb. 2 Super Bowl game against the San Fransisco 49ers. Our sportscaster guests both picked the Chiefs to win that matchup, but there's still a great deal to consider before the red and gold confetti flies.

Eric Stonestreet / Twitter

Kansas City Chiefs fans weren't the only ones showering their team with love on Sunday after the team beat the Tennessee Titans 35-24 to win the AFC Championship game. 

Turns out, making your first Super Bowl in a half-century makes you pretty popular. 

Former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole and rocker Melissa Etheridge chimed in with congratulatory takes on Sunday. Even Missouri-native Brad Pitt got in on the action. 

Josh Weinstock/Twitter

When you think back on the Kansas City Chiefs' 51-31 comeback win in the playoffs over the Houston Texans, you might remember Patrick Mahomes rallying his teammates on the sidelines.

Or the Chiefs seven touchdowns on seven straight possessions.

Or even the three touchdowns scored by running back Damien Williams or tight end Travis Kelce's three touchdown catches. 

Chris Madrigal

As you prepare for Sunday's AFC championship game, here are a few tidbits to help.

Who are the Chiefs playing?

Kansas City will line up against the Tennessee Titans, who finished the season 9-7. The Titans got to the AFC championship by upsetting New England in the wild-card game 20-13 and then beating Baltimore 28-12. Both of those playoff games were on a Saturday. Just saying.

Ever since the teams’ first meeting in Oakland, nearly 60 years ago, the rivalry between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders has been considered one of the bitterest in the NFL. After this past Sunday it will never be quite the same. Commentator Victor Wishna explains why, in this month’s edition of 'A Fan’s Notes.'

On Sunday the Kansas City Chiefs made what is most likely their final trip to Oakland for one last dance in the dirt.

Meg Williams / San Francisco 49ers

In the best of times for the Kansas City Chiefs and through the worst, the organization has heard women’s voices loud and clear. Since the 1990s, the team has been conscientious about listening to the players’ wives and girlfriends when it comes to family concerns.

“It was amazing … to hear them and their side of it,” said Lamonte Winston, the team’s former executive director of player development until 2009. He first joined the Chiefs as a scout in 1993.

Suzanne Hogan / KCUR 89.3

Some of the country's best gymnasts, along with their coaches, families and fans, have been in Kansas City this weekend for the U.S. Gymnastics Championships. USA Gymnastics estimates the event will have a $5.6 million economic impact on the region, not including what visitors spend eating out or shopping for gifts to take home.

The competition is just one high-profile athletic event that Kansas City has recently snagged. The city will also host the 2023 NFL Draft, and is among the 17 United States finalists to host World Cup soccer games in 2026.

Jeremy Bernfeld / KCUR 89.3 file photo

Kansas City Chiefs star wide receiver Tyreek Hill won’t be sanctioned over an incident in which his 3-year-old son was injured. The NFL's decision comes just days before traning camp starts Tuesday.

Segment 1: How tariffs are affecting  business, food producers and consumers. 

In May, China issued tariffs on U.S. goods, and just about everyone in the Heartland is feeling the impact. 

file photo / KCUR 89.3

Legalizing sports gambling in Kansas seemed like a safe bet earlier this year. It’s a new source of tax dollars and enjoys bipartisan support.

Sgt. 1st Class Anthony L. Taylor / U.S. Army

This just in: The National Football League is hiring! But unless you’re about 20 years old and have been preparing for the NFL your entire life, you’re better off watching the draft live on TV with millions of other fans. Commentator Victor Wishna explains why in this month’s edition of 'A Fan’s Notes.'

Don’t let the calendar fool you. Fans feel that distinct chill in the air, which can only mean one thing: Football season is here.

Mizzou Athletics

Former Lee’s Summit High School quarterback Drew Lock is expected to buck a trend in this year’s NFL Draft when it comes to players from the Kansas City area.

Since 2011, three first-round draft picks — Aldon Smith (Raytown), Shane Ray (Bishop Miege) and Charles Harris (Lincoln Prep) — anchored the defensive line at the University of Missouri. But Lock, whose Mizzou career ended at the Liberty Bowl on Dec. 31, is expected to be one of multiple quarterbacks taken early.

Segment 1: Getting more women in the male-dominated world of sports management and media. 

Women have made great advances as coaches, managers, and sportscasters, but still rarely hold the same top spots as their male counterparts. So what would it take to get more women involved? We ask a panel of sports journalists what is needed to give women a better opportunity to secure some these coveted positions.

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