Erin Andrews, as you can see above, was hanging out with John Cena and Tony Parker in New York last night, working with Gillette to select a group of youngsters who would receive the "Ultimate Summer Job." (Ed. Note: The winners ended up being Adam Ward and Jason Fisher; congrats, gents.) She also took some time out of her schedule to talk candidly with FanHouse about the craziness of the sports world over the past week and a half, college expansion, the Red Sox player who crushes on her, what her life is like a year removed from being the most talked about person in America, and how Dancing With the Stars impacted her life.
Will Brinson: Hey, Erin, thanks for talking to FanHouse.
Erin Andrews: No worries, what's up?
WB: Let's dive right in -- if you gotta pick one, what's the bigger deal to you right now, the World Cup or the NCAA expansion?
EA: ... Or the Boston Celtics, right?
WB: [Laughing] Or that ...
EA: Well, being born in Maine and having the whole family in New England, it's probably [NBA Finals] -- that's the bigger deal to me. The college football expansion, I was just not understanding what the heck was going on. You know, I'm seeing stuff on the ticker about OU and Texas ending up in the SEC and as someone who went to Florida, I'm thinking to myself, "What?!?"
But yeah, the hammer obviously came down [Monday] night when the Longhorns said they weren't going anywhere and basically stopped the bleeding. So, the whole thing was just crazy though -- I was reading a lot of tweets and stuff from co-workers like Mark May and [Kirk] Herbstreit saying, "Just sit back, don't freak out ..." I think those guys probably knew in the back of their minds that Texas would stop the bleeding and kind of take care of it. So I tried to just follow their lead and sit back and see what was happening, but I'm not gonna lie, when I saw that Texas and potentially OU were going to the SEC, I was like, "No, no, no, no, no -- what's happening here?"
WB: Right, right -- it's like I told someone last week -- we're in the middle of some sort of sports Armageddon or something with the Blackhawks winning, the expansion, World Cup starting ...
EA: The other day, Maks [Maksim Chmerkovskiy] and I were presenting at the [Country Music Awards] and I'm sitting in there in hair and makeup for four hours and I'm freaking out because Jeremiah Masoli had just gotten kicked out of Oregon, [Tom] Izzo's talking about going to the Cavs, Colorado and Nebraska leave ... and I was just like, "What is going on right now?" And -- no offense -- but my hair and makeup team had NO idea what was going on.
WB: Exactly -- crazy week. But shifting gears, you've got an, um, guy on the Red Sox? [Ed. Note: Daniel Nava is his name]
EA: I know!
WB: What's ... it's like an awkward, semi-courtship -- what's the deal there?
EA: Well, first of all, like I told you, my whole family is from New England and grew up giant Red Sox fans, and it's funny, because I had heard this story a couple of weeks ago and I actually was going to Boston this weekend because I was going to Game 5 [of the NBA Finals]. I heard the Red Sox were in town and they had an afternoon game and I decided I was going to be the ultimate dork and go to the Red Sox game in the afternoon and the Celtics game at night, so ...
WB: Just for the record, that sounds like fun ...
EA: Yeah! It was amazing, it was an amazing weekend. So Saturday I was flying up to the game and my good buddy Dave O'Brien, who works play-by-play for Red Sox radio, texted me and he said, "What could be better?" ... And he knew I was coming to town, and he said that [Nava] had just got called up on Sunday and I said, "That's awesome!" And I get on my flight to fly to Boston and land, and my phone just explodes as we land and it's everyone saying, "This kid just hit a granzo!" And I'm going to the game, and we were going to try and work it out where I could see him during BP and all that stuff.
But it just didn't work out. We were in town with a lot of friends and I didn't get there in time and I didn't want to mess with the kid. He was on such a high and I didn't want all the older ballplayers to tease him or anything like that ... But yeah, I grew up in Maine and my dad was a giant Red Sox fan. When my grandpa passed away and the Red Sox won the World Series in '04, we put Red Sox championship hats on his grave, so coming from a girl from that area, it's kind of cool.
WB: Right, at least it's not a Yankee player? Then it would be highly problematic ...
EA: I didn't say that -- you said that!
WB: Fair enough ... Alright, lemme ask you: "Dancing With the Stars" -- without getting into a whole long question -- it seemed to be, in all honesty, very cathartic for you. Is that a good way to describe it?
EA: Yeah. You know what? I did it ... I said in so many ways that I just wanted to get happy again. And my poor partner, he had no idea what he was in for -- it was so much therapy. But it was what I needed. I don't think I realized what I had really been through in the past year, and just to kind of overcome some fears and some confidence issues, it was just so big for me.
And you know the nicest thing about it -- and I know there are a lot of naysayers, and you've got one at FanHouse who wrote a really nasty article about it -- until people know what I went through and what my family has gone through, for me to have an opportunity for other people to finally talk about something different other than that damn video that's on the internet ... you can write all you want -- this is the best thing I could ever do in my life.
WB: No, no, no -- I think it's fantastic, and my apologies for anyone here who ...
EA: No, that's fine. I had women writers write stuff about it. But they'll never have any sort of idea what we went through as a family. And if they're saying it was wrong for a sideline reporter to do -- no it wasn't. That's a profession, that's almost like a sport in itself. Those dancers are athletes and I gave everything into it and, you know, it was therapy and it was awesome and I enjoyed every minute of it. And I did what I wanted to do on that and get better and I was happy about it.
WB: No, like I said, it seems entirely cathartic and you're out here doing this thing in New York -- and not to segue straight into that -- but you're out here doing this summer job contest with Gillette and Tony Parker and John Cena, you guys are picking a group of kids for the "Ultimate Summer Job." Can you kind of tell us a little about that?
EA: Yeah, it's kind of cool, because I get to be the judge -- for the first time in three months. And it's a great experience because we got to see their videos and [Tuesday night] we're gonna see them put through the challenges. And I just want to see someone with the same enthusiasm and the same creativity in their eye that we tried to show the judges on "Dancing With the Stars."
WB: Alright, Erin, well thanks a ton for taking the time to talk to FanHouse and enjoy the evening of getting to judge ...
EA: Yeah, dude, thanks!