Replacing a legend

Hi, Niners fans, I’m Mike Bordick. No, wait, I’m Phil Barber. Mike Bordick is the man who replaced Cal Ripken at shortstop with the Baltimore Orioles, and that’s pretty close to how I feel stepping in for Matt Maiocco, who redefined the role of the sports beat writer during his 11 years with the Press Democrat.


Matt will resurface shortly, and I know that you will continue to follow his reporting. It would be folly to think I could replace him in the hearts of 49ers fans. Rather, I hope to become just one of the sources you regularly use to stay up-to-date on your favorite team.


I have spent the past seven years covering the Raiders for the Press Democrat. I know, the migration usually works in the other direction (Ronnie Lott… Roger Craig… Jerry Rice…). But I’m not just a Raiders guy. I have done a ton of writing for NFL Publishing and for the Sporting News and others, covering the whole league rather than a single team. I wrote the book “We Were Champions: The 49ers’ Dynasty in Their Own Words” (Triumph Books, 2002) and ghostwrote the foreword with Bill Walsh.


In short, I have a grasp of 49ers history and I know the NFL. I just have a LOT of catching up to do when it comes to the current team. It will be fun to get there. I hope you come along.

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