Mar 21,2013

Playing the FieldPlaying the Field
Lights, Camera, Football???

Living in Los Angeles, I get to experience a lot of things that people in other parts of the country miss out on. For instance, regardless of the season, I can (and do) hike gorgeous canyons numerous times per week. On these hikes, I often see celebrities. In fact, I’m quite certain that Ray Romano and I are on the exact same hiking schedule. Come to think of it, we huffed and puffed our way past each other at the top of Fryman Canyon just a few days ago. Hmmmm.

Of course, putting down roots in LA means there are also a good number of activities that I don’t get to experience on a regular basis. To give you an idea… I have zero access to legitimately good pizza, most happy hour specials are neither happy nor special, and the biggest football team in town only plays on Saturdays.

It’s this last thing – the lack of an NFL team – that really stands out. I mean, Hollywood and professional sports have always been fascinated with each other. Think about it… Jack Nicholson and the Lakers, Drew Carey and the Cleveland Indians, all of the Kardashians and the entirety of the NBA.

This romance isn’t wholly one-sided either. Let’s not forget that plenty of high profile athletes have enjoyed the shimmer and shine of Tinseltown. Dwayne Johnson was The Rock long before he became The Scorpion King, Shaquille O’Neal’s “magic” was limited to the court before he granted wishes as Kazaam, and Michael Strahan made his living laying out quarterbacks before turning in his cleats for loafers as Kelly Ripa’s oh-so affable sidekick.

It makes complete sense then that the NFL would partner up with some of Hollywood’s heaviest hitters to create a boot camp for current and former players interested in learning more about the entertainment industry. I was fortunate enough to gain media access to this event and had a fantastic time chatting with some of the selected pros as well as their showbiz savvy mentors. Check out the below video for all of the behind the scenes goodness!

While the “LA Quakes” (best potential team name ever, right?) have yet to find a home in the Southland, it is nice to know that a successful and impressive courtship between the league and the biz has begun. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the next time I hike past Ray Romano he’s preparing to star opposite Darrelle Revis in a new sitcom for CBS called, “Whose Island is it anyway.”