C.J.: Ex-KARE11 figure Joe Fryer hot on trail of national news

  • Article by: C.J. , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 19, 2013 - 6:55 PM

Joe Fryer is filling in at NBC and admits, attire-wise, “I definitely have stepped it up.”

Former KARE11 reporter Joe Fryer has been getting national face time on NBC.

“Filling in as @NBCNews correspondent this August,” reads his Twitter account. It’s not a tryout, Fryer told me Monday. “They are borrowing me from KING 5 to help fill in on the West Coast. It’s pretty common; [NBC] will often borrow reporters from affiliates. I’m here for sure for August and am basically available to them as long as they need me. Considering the stories I’m covering, Hannah Anderson, of course … ” He could be there a while.

Anderson is the California teen abducted by the family friend who killed her mother and brother. Anderson was found in a remote part of Idaho after four observant horse riders noticed there was something not quite right about Anderson being in the backcountry with this man, whom the FBI then tracked down and killed.

Fryer is also on the story about Bob Filner, the San Diego mayor who won’t leave despite serial allegations of sexual harassment.

Fryer spent six years at KARE11, where he worked in the “Extras” unit. In 2010 he moved to Seattle’s KING-TV to do the same kind of long-form pieces he did here. “The news director at KING is Mark Ginther, who’s also a Minnesotan,” Fryer said Monday. “It took a Minnesotan to pry a Minnesotan out of Minnesota.”

Watching Fryer on NBC, it appeared to me that his network attire is making a much better sartorial statement than what he wore at KARE.

Somebody bought new suits for his NBC network TV gig, I teased Twitter’s @joefryer.

“I did get a new suit and sport coat last month. Thanks for noticing! :),” he replied.

As my tweeting began to sound more like news gathering than the usual nonsense, Fryer turned me over to Amy Lynn, who’s in charge of NBC News Communications. (And get this: Lynn started e-mailing me on Saturday to arrange my Monday phoner with Fryer.)

During our phone interview I told Fryer he didn’t dress as well on KARE. He laughed — “I definitely have stepped it up.”

AP defends Johnny Football

In the wake of Johnny Football possibly being in NCAA trouble for allegedly accepting money for autographs, Adrian Peterson told FoxSports.com that the NCAA should pay college athletes.

I have yet to hear a sports guy disagree with Peterson, who may be just reading the tea leaves.

“I think the change is inevitable,” said Kevin Blackistone on an ESPN show. “Why did it take this long? Why did Johnny Manziel become the poster boy for the immoral and unethical economic situation that is what college athletics is all about at a big-time [school]?”

Indeed, plenty of poor student athletes have been punished for receiving extra benefits not allowed by the NCAA. The change should have come about because of some kid struggling financially to get through college, unlike Manziel, a Texas A&M freshman Heisman Trophy winner who comes from a wealthy family.

Monday I asked Peterson via Twitter if he regretted not speaking up sooner on behalf of financially strapped athletes as opposed to a filthy rich one. The Viking has not responded.

Let me state that I am a Manziel fan, frat boy behavior notwithstanding, and would find it positively delightful if A&M defeated Alabama again (although I don’t see that happening).

‘High-drama narcissist’

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