A Joyful 49er Homer

written by Andy Hawk, ESPN 1320’s resident 49ers Homer

Steve Young, Jerry Rice, and Brent Jones sure do look great this year.  At 6-1, The 49ers are ranked by ESPN as the #2 team in the NFL.  Don’t mind me, I just have that tingly feeling anytime someone says anything about the NFL or even football in general.  Come on… six and freaking one!  How did this happen?  It’s felt like an eternity since our team was a dominant force on Sundays.  I mean Alex smith is our QB!  I thought we had holes in the offensive line?  I thought the Niners were too weak at the WR position?  Isn’t Frank Gore too old?  No, nope, nah, and not at all.  The San Francisco 49ers have improved every week in almost every facet.  The defense is so good they’re physically knocking star players out of the game every week. 


The 49ers run the ball and can’t be run on.  This spells very bad news for the hapless Redskins on Sunday.  John Beck, you’re in trouble.  I’m so excited for Sunday at 10AM, I can’t stand it!   As the playbook is evolving we are starting to see some serious creativity coming from coach Harbaugh.  Never in our wildest dreams would anyone have guessed Joe Staley and Isaac Sopoaga would both have huge catches for first downs.   I’m not even going to try and predict what trick play we might see on Sunday morning


I’m Andy Hawk, your San Francisco 49er homer, reminding you to catch the game this week on ESPN 1320 and hold on…pregame at 9:00am, kickoff at 10:00am, with Ted Robinson and Eric Davis.

November 4, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Brian Lopez's Blog, Uncategorized | No comment

Get Ready For 1st Place After Week 3

Written by our resident 49ers Homer, Andy Hawk


On a week after a heartbreaking loss where QB Alex Smith had a secret concussion, the starting WR’s are injured and out of the lineup, and Frank Gore looks a step slow and ineffective – is there a reason to be a 49ers HOMER this week?  Sure, mainly because the Niners are playing The Cincinnati Bengals this week.  Hey, the Bengals are young and hungry, but they are still the Bengals.  The Niners, even with their struggles right now, are favored on the road this week to win plus 2 and half.  That’s how little the Bengals are thought of.  San Francisco to start 2-1.  Yeah, I can still be a Homer this week.


We can say for sure the 49er run defense looks great.  That’s not a problem.  SF should figure out their issues with the secondary this week against a rookie QB and batch of very young receivers.  While the Bengals have shown promise, there won’t be Pro Bowlers like Witten and Austin on the field this week.  Last week may have been some good medicine the Niners secondary had to take preparing them for better for the rest of the year.


With limited weapons Harbuagh is certainly going to earn his money with a creative game plan this week.  I’m predicting a 24-16 win on the road this week, and will be listening early on Sunday morning on ESPN 1320.

September 23, 2011 at 9:59 am | Brian Lopez's Blog | No comment

The Niners in 2011 = Surprise

The following is the latest entry from our resident “49ers Homer,” Andy Hawk.


Can you say this years Tampa Bay Bucs?  I think we can.  SURPRISE!  The element of surprise will work this year for the Niners.  Everyone looked at a very talented Niner roster last year and said 9-7, maybe 10-6 if all goes well.  Subtract some bad luck with bad bounces of the ball and the Niners are 8-8 easy last year.  Plus, anyone in the NFL will tell us that the Niners were the worst coached team in league last year. 


Now with a stronger roster and a much better system for Alex Smith and the young offensive line, everyone in the national media is predicting our favorite team from the Bay to be terrible.  SURPRISE!  Talent wise with the West Coast offense, solid running game, and improved defense, 10-6 is realistic.  San Francisco is this year’s Tampa Bay. SURPRISE to all not paying attention.   You heard it here first.


I mean you believe a team led by Patrick Willis, Frank Gore, and Vernon Davis can’t win the division, why did you think so last year?  So, now that we feel confident about the coaching and system is everything I just said really a fantasy?  Nope.  While the NFL is overlooking the 49ers, we will see some surprising rookie performances from Aldon Smith and Kendall Hunter, along with breakout seasons from Navorro Bowman and Ahmad Brooks leading the way to a 3-1 start filled with 27-17 victories.  SURPRISE SF to be NFC West Champs.


I’m Andy Hawk your 49er homer and I will be listening to the first Niner win this Sunday on ESPN 1320.

September 7, 2011 at 6:01 pm | Brian Lopez's Blog | No comment

Notes from The 49ers Homer 8/24/11

The following is from special contributor, Andy Hawk.  He’s our resident “49ers Homer.”  Enjoy…


Let’s not get THAT  excited about the dominant pre-season win over the Raiders last weekend!!  Besides, the Raiders are REALLY bad.  If the Raiders win only three games this year would anyone honestly be surprised?  Just look at their schedule and try and find 4 wins.  Now I am not saying the Niners are going to win 12 games this year either, but they certainly don’t have to.  Weekly improvement will get the job done in the NFC WEST .  Improvement is what we saw last week and will continue.  Let’s look at what the Niners have.


1.    An improved secondary through free agency at almost every position.

2.    Improved pass rush with Brooks looking strong and first round draft pick Aldon Smith looking more accomplished at the position in two Pre-season games than Manny Lawson did in five seasons.

3.    Improved at the wide receiver position with a hungry, or should I say starving to prove himself Braylon Edwards.  Plus the scheme of a West coast offense will show much better numbers for the receivers as a whole.

4.    Believe it or not, even with the awful pre-season game in New Orleans – the offensive line will be better this year.   Honestly, that first Pre-season game might prove to be the best thing that ever happened to them.  The line will be more

mature this season, they are currently healthier, in much better shape, and are better at the Center position by acquiring Goodwin from the Saints.


AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, the coaching will be 100 percent better.  The 49ers were the WORST coached  team in the NFL last year.  They have a ton of talent, but good talent and terrible coaching lead to 6 wins last year.  What will slightly improved talent with good coaching do?  hmmm.


Winning the NFC WEST does not seem that far off at all when you spell it all out.  The Seahawks still have a worse QB situation than the Niners and the Cardinals have a QB with a huge contract who has a lower career QB rating than Alex Smith.  Are we really ready to anoint THE RAMS to kings of the division? I’m not.  Weekly improvement under Harbaugh CAN win the NFC West this season.


I’m  Andy Hawk your official 49er homer and I can’t wait to take in the 3rd pre-season game vs. the Texans this Saturday on ESPN 1320.   Click here to email me.

August 24, 2011 at 10:49 am | Brian Lopez's Blog | No comment

Jerry Rice Will Be an ESPN Analyst

Jerry Rice will join the ESPN staff, which will be a welcome addition on September 15th. His candor is sharp and he will go after athletes I think. Some guys, especially coaches looking for a future gig won’t do that. We don’t have to worry about that with Rice.

Look for him to participate on NFL LiveSportsCenter and ESPN’s Audibles show. We hear he will team up with his former touchdown connection Steve Young in some fashion, which should be fun for 49ers fans.

August 9, 2011 at 12:59 pm | Derek Moore's Blog | No comment

Poker’s November Nine…

What idiot stays up until 3am trying to find out who ultimately makes Poker’s November Nine? Oh, that would be me.  Couldn’t it wait until the next day?  I guess so, but in poker, you have to live in the moment.  The World Series of Poker’s Main Event is now set…. After 8 grueling days of play, a field that began with 6,865 players has been pared down to just nine.  Gary Wise of ESPN.com has an excellent piece on those remaining (representing seven countries) who have a shot at poker immortality…. and the top prize of $8.7 Million.  That’s a lot of glue.  You could win The Masters, The Kentucky Derby and the Daytona 500 in the same year… and not have 8.7 million.  And poker’s ultimate showdown won’t happen until November, so I can finally get some sleep.

larrykang photo

July 20, 2011 at 11:40 am | Tom Nakashima's Blog | No comment

Thiago Alves on latest fight, welterweight division, GSP

June 15, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Uncategorized | No comment

Local Athletes Of The Year Named

As proud partners with the community, we’re excited to share this news from SureWest Sports Show.  You can here the hour-long youth sports program, “SureWest Sports Radio Show,” with Mike Finnerty and SacBee’s Joe Davidson, Saturday mornings 9:00a-10:00a on ESPN 1320.



ROSEVILLE, CA – May 19, 2011 – SureWest Communications (NASDAQ: SURW) today announced the third annual SureWest Sports Show Athletes of the Year recipients. Winners selected for the 2010-11 season were:



Highlights and interviews with the winners will air on the May 25, 2011 episode of the SureWest Sports Show; a 30-minute program spotlighting local youth and high school sports. The SureWest Sports Show broadcasts each Wednesday on SureWest channel 702 at 7 p.m. and can also be viewed online at surewestsports.com. The SureWest Sports Show is the only Sacramento area program to showcase both youth and high school sports featuring scores, highlights and interviews. Fans can view new and archived shows, sign up Facebook for Twitter and alerts, and find out where the show will be next at surewestsports.com.


SureWest Sports Show Female Athlete of the Year Belle Obert was captain for the Del Oro High School girl’s varsity volleyball program and was named co-MVP of the Sierra Foothill League, First Team All-Metro and MaxPreps Second Team All-State. She helped lead the Golden Eagles to the CIF Division II Semi-Finals. Obert also played basketball for Del Oro, helping them capture the Sierra Foothill League title for the seventh consecutive year. As team captain, Obert was selected league co-MVP, First Team All-League and First Team All-Metro while leading the team to both the Division II and NorCal championship basketball games. Obert was also selected to play in the basketball and volleyball Optimist All-Star games. Outside of athletics, Obert held a 4.2 GPA and was involved in community programs such as “Crutches to Haiti” and “Soles 4 Souls.” She will attend Butler University this spring on a volleyball scholarship.


“Belle was a great leader for our volleyball team, both on and off the court,” said Del Oro Girl’s Volleyball Head Coach Stuart Kageta. “She has amazing concentration on the court and made positive things happen no matter what the circumstance.”


SureWest Sports Show Male Athlete of the Year Kyle Howarth was an All-League First Team selection in three sports at Granite Bay High School in 2010-11. In soccer, he earned First Team All-League honors for the third consecutive year and helped lead the Grizzlies to a #5 national ranking as they captured the Sierra Foothill League Championship and Division II CIF Championship. Howarth also excelled in basketball, leading the Sierra Foothill League with 8.6 rebounds per game. Lastly, Howarth shined in volleyball, leading the Grizzlies to the SFL co-league championship as the team’s Offensive MVP. In the classroom, Howarth held a 4.2 GPA and will attend the University of Davis as a pre-med student.


“Kyle Howarth is an outstanding young man, and in all my years of coaching, I have never come across a better all-around athlete, student and person,” said Granite Bay Boy’s Volleyball Head Coach Bruce Honberger. “He exemplifies the student athlete.”


Read Joe Davidson’s blog, here:

May 19, 2011 at 2:24 pm | Brian Lopez's Blog | No comment

ESPN Experts Weigh In-Say 49ers Could Be THE Team Next Year

The Green Bay Packers caught fire the last couple of months, and went all the way. Who could be that next team? Two ESPN analysts, coach Herm Edwards and our own Colin Cowherd picked the San Francisco 49ers next year. Not to say that the 49ers are going to the Super Bowl. However, both believed that with a decent quarterback, they could be the most improved team in football next season.

Read more…

February 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Derek Moore's Blog | No comment

Nice to see a good guy get his due


Frank LaRosa, the resident golf guru at Sacramento’s ESPN 1320, was recently acknowledged by the Northern California PGA with the “Sports Media Person Of The Year Award.”  It’s his 2nd time gaining such recognition, (the other was in 2005) making this a rare feat, and a well deserved honor.  Frank is perfect example for the NCPGA organization, considering his lengthy commitment to the game of golf.  More importantly, he’s been generous with his time and heart in furthering related charitable causes, along with being an influential, involved, positive force in the Sacramento/Northern California community. Professionally, and personally, we’re proud to be affiliated with him.  Congratulations, Frank! 


Read the official press release from the Northern California PGA, below:


Nor Cal PGA Honors Frank LaRosa with its

Sports Media Person of the Year Award


VACAVILLE, Calif. — The Northern California PGA today announced that it has selected Frank LaRosa of ESPN 1320 AM radio in Sacramento, Calif. for its Sports Media Person of the Year Award.  With his daily radio golf reports, blogs on the station website, and golf column for Senior Magazine, LaRosa has been a loyal supporter and participant for numerous NCPGA events and a 2005 recipient of this award.


“Frank has been integral to promoting the cause and direction of the NCPGA throughout the years,” said NCPGA Awards Chairman Cathy Jo Johnson. “The strong relationships he has developed across every facet of golf has enabled him to make a difference in growing the game, the industry, and the NCPGA.”


LaRosa is among 17 recipients of the NCPGA’s 2010 Annual Section Awards. Section awards are given to PGA Professionals and industry leaders who have excelled in the game and business of golf. The NCPGA will recognize its 2010 Annual Section Award Winners on Sunday, December 5 at the NCPGA Special Awards Ceremony & President’s Dinner at the North Ridge Country Club in Fair Oaks, Calif.  This event, a highlight for the year, will be held the evening prior to the NCPGA Annual Meeting.  There are more than 300 golf professionals and industry leaders expected to attend.


LaRosa has been providing golf information across all mediums for more than 18 years – radio, television, newspaper, magazine and the Internet. Currently he writes, produces and serves as the voice for daily golf reports on ESPN radio Sacramento. He complements his radio shows by blogging on the station website. He also writes a monthly golf column for Senior Magazine and produces various videos and/or commercials in the golf world.


LaRosa has been a member of numerous committees in support of NCPGA events including Play Golf America Day, The Langley, and Saving Strokes to name a few. For these he often wore two hats — assisting in planning the events and representing the Section in negotiations for paid and unpaid promotional support on broadcast media. Where appropriate, he also served as Master of Ceremonies for many of these events. Promoting the work of the members and the Northern California Section, he always endeavors to create exposure among the general public for any Section business or Professional news coming out of the NCPGA office and has encouraged others in the media to do the same.


For more information about the Northern California PGA visit www.ncpga.com.

December 9, 2010 at 1:47 pm | Brian Lopez's Blog, Golf To Go by Frank LaRosa | No comment

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