We had the chance to talk with Adam Schefter ahead of his book signing in Littleton on Nov. 6.
With more than 7M followers on Twitter, Adam Schefter is regarded as one of the most prominent figures in sports media. A former sports writer for the Rocky Mountain News and The Denver Post, he graciously took the time out of his busy schedule to chat with us regarding his new memoir, The Man I Never Met.
The Man I Never Met tells “a powerful story of loss and hope by one of the biggest names in sports media.” Check out our interview with Adam Schefter below!
OCN Interviews Adam Schefter:
Your name is one of the most prominent in sports media, and you’ve written several books about the ins and outs of football. But your most recent book, The Man I Never Met, is very different and takes a more personal approach than anything else you’ve written. Can you tell me a little bit about it? Just a brief summary.
Well, you know, it’s not like anything I’ve ever done before. And the book was done to honor my wife’s late husband, and to pay tribute to her and to salute her toughness. So it’s a way to commemorate her late husband and everything that she went through. And, obviously, some of me and some of my story seeps into this story — it has to. As I kept writing it, honestly, I kept telling my co-writer, Michael Rosenberg, that the less we have of me, the happier I’ll be. I wanted it to be about Joe as much as possible. That was the idea here. It was designed to honor his life and the man he was. He’s had a big impact on my life even though I never met him.
And basically, on the 15th anniversary of 9/11, ESPN ran a feature about Joe. We did a tribute to his life and ran it on the first Sunday of the season. That feature on ESPN got a ton of reactions — it touched, inspired, and moved so many people — and I couldn’t believe the reaction it got. So, we did more of it, in the form of a book. The book is a much more detailed version of the 6.5-minute feature that ran in September of 2016.
Having written this memoir, what was your writing process like? And how did it differ from the one you had for your other books?
There really is no comparison. This is someone’s life that was very near and dear to us. And while all my other books involved football, and I worked hard — very hard on those — this material was a little bit more complex and emotionally sensitive than anything I’ve ever worked on before. So it had to be done the right way, delicately and sensitively, and in a way to honor Joe and to pay tribute to Sharri.
How excited are you for that and to be back in Colorado?
Honestly, that makes me really happy. Colorado is a part of me — it runs through my soul, that’s how I feel. Even though I left there, after spending 16 years there, Colorado is such an important part of my life. I have such a fondness for the city and the people that it will always be a special part of me, even though I live in New York.
Do you have any other book signings or other promotional events coming up that you’re particularly excited about?
Nope. This is it!
Now, I know your daughter, Dylan, has had some experience interviewing athletes and coaches — I watched her interview with the Patriots, and she seems like a natural. What has that been like for you as a father to see her following in your footsteps?
On my Facebook page and my Instagram page, we did one Friday night and she interviewed the Golden State Warriors — so Steph Curry and Kevin Durant — and honestly, I’d rather her work some of these events instead of me [laughs]. It brings me more joy to watch her than it does me. She loves doing it, and as much as she loves doing it, she doesn’t love it as much as her father loves watching her do it.
Alright, so we’re switching gears a bit here. So you used to live in Denver — how often do you get the chance to visit? Have you been able to bring your family out here for a trip and show them the city?
I don’t get back as often as I would like — I don’t get to travel anywhere as much as I’d like — and I’d like to get back as much as I could. I did take my family back there before my 50th birthday, because they’d never been — my wife, my son, my daughter had never been — so that was very meaningful for me to be able to take them back there and show them Colorado and what it was like, to give them a taste of what my life was like for 16 years or so that I lived out there. I showed them my old townhouse in Cherry Creek, my old neighborhood, and my favorite places to eat. I loved it, and I wish I could do it more.
What would you say is the thing that you miss the most about living here, and why?
I miss all of the people there. I mean, we know about the blue skies and the picturesque views, but it’s really about the people. There’s some great people there. And, you know, I lived there — I don’t know if it’s the exact same way, but it’s such a peaceful and easy place to go live.
Do you have any advice for aspiring authors and writers?
I think I would tell writers, authors — and I would tell anybody this — do what you love, work at it, give yourself to it, and dedicate yourself to your craft. If you love what you do, it’ll be easier to dedicate yourself to it. As a writer, I think that the more you write, the better you are. The more you read, the better you write. I think it’s important to read and write if you want to go into the field.
From what I’ve heard, you’re a fantasy football fan. How is your fantasy football team fairing this season?
Oh yes. I have two fantasy football teams. In fact, one of them is eight points down as we’re talking [laughs].
Growing up, was there a particular athlete or coach that you looked up to, that inspired you to do what you’re doing today?
Not an athlete or coach, no. I never would’ve imagined doing what I’m doing today, ever. You know, what I’m doing today, honestly, is nothing I could’ve imagined as a child. I feel incredibly fortunate and blessed, and Colorado was a part of it — my professional training ground. That’s where I grew up professionally, and there were so many great people there that I learned from.
Favorite sports team as a kid? And has that evolved or changed as you’ve gotten older?
Of course. As an adult, my favorite team is my fantasy team — fantasy football and basketball, those are my favorite teams. To be perfectly honest, I don’t root for teams, I root for people. People that I have a professional relationship with. Those are the people I root for.
Well, that’s all I have for you. Thank you again for taking the time to chat with me.
Thank you. Best of luck!
What do you think? Have you read The Man I Never Met? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.