INDIANAPOLIS — Former SportsCenter host Dan Patrick hasn’t lost popularity since leaving the Mother Ship. I stole a few minutes of his time here in Indy to talk Adam Sandler, O.J. Simpson and more.
1. You’ve become a regular in Adam Sandler’s movies. What’s your relationship like with Sandler and his people?
Good relationship. He said if you want to be in a movie, I’ll put you in. So I’m in another one that comes out Father’s Day and I’ll see him on Thursday when he’s in town. He’s been very generous with that. He finds a spot for me, so it’s good.
2. You’ve done a lot of interviews. What’s the most nervous you’ve been for an interview?
O.J. Simpson made me nervous.
And then how’d you feel afterwards?
Kind of empty. Like, I’m doing this interview with him and I wasn’t sure what I was going to get, and then I did it and all of a sudden I was like, “No, I think this guy’s guilty, he’s a bad guy and I just spent 30 minutes talking to him.” It’s been a while since I’ve been nervous, but I think it’s all relative to how much thought you’re giving to it — and sometimes you overthink these things. You try to be natural with these people, they’ll be natural in return.
3. How do you feel about being the subject of the media spotlight at this point in your career?
Oh, it’s all silly. Who cares? It all goes away one day and you sit in a room saying, “Where’s everybody to interview me?”
4. You’re probably asked all the time about the best part of this job? What’s the worst part?
Being away from family. I worked at ESPN for 18 years, I did second shift for 15 years. I missed out on a lot of things. That’s the hard part. When you tell people about this industry, they all think it’s going to be glamorous. You could be tucked away in some remote part of the country and have a wife and kids (at home), so you’re not living a glamorous life. I think everybody looks and says I want to be Bob Costas or Jim Nantz or whoever, but there’s only one of those jobs for each network. If you really love it, you’ll work anywhere, but I think your family pays the price for a lot of it.
5. For years you did radio without being seen while working. Now, your show is also on television. How does that dynamic change the way you approach the show?
I don’t play to the camera.
Just act like it’s not even there?
If you do, then you play to it. I don’t acknowledge the cameras. We don’t wear makeup. We’re showing a radio show on TV. It’s a radio show, and if there’s stupid stuff going on during the commercial breaks, that’s what I thought was great to show. You can watch a simulcast where somebody puts a camera on a guy on radio and you go, “This is really boring. I’m a loser to be watching this.” I said, let’s have moving parts there, have some fun, different angles, and throw the Danettes in there. It’s a little bit different, and that’s why I decided to do it that way.