Earlier this week I had the opportunity to attend in my opinion what is the best Media Days in the country. American Athletic Conference Media days in beautiful Newport Rhode Island. This is an event which spans over 2 days and includes an 18 hole scramble-style golf event for all the media and attendees, it is then followed up with the best clambake of the summer. The golf event is held at Newport National Golf Club a beautiful links-style course that challenge even the best golfers in the world. The clambake is hosted at Gurney’s Newport Marina and is one of the most revered events the reveal alone is worth the wait.
But the main reason we are there is to interview the coaches and student-athletes, have roundtables discussions about the state of college football in addition to the state of our conference. This year was the 5th anniversary of the American Athletic Conference and they also revealed the 5th Anniversary all American Athletic Conference team. I will have an article on that shortly. During the conference Commissioner, Mike Aresco made an address to open the event. In that, he mentioned that our conference is like the Jet Blue of airlines we are still a major airline just a little different than the Delta and United’s. He also said that UCF should have every right to be declaring themselves National Champs as other Universities have done so before. Which is a completely different approach than earlier in 2018. Some were not happy with him not defending his conference’s team and their title claim.
With the conference set to move their corporate offices to Dallas, TX in 2020 there is some uncertainty as to what will happen with the greatest media days in years to come. Some just assume that they will break the tradition and move the media days to Dallas or to a rotating place every year. This writer hopes that they keep the tradition and leave the media days in Rhode Island as this is something that is very enjoyable for the media. Either way a huge thank you to the American Athletic Conference for the great event they put together and looking forward to 2019 in Newport even if its the last one there.