Steve Layman has gone from reporting on injuries to recovering from one.
A serious one.
The NewsChannel 5 sports anchor was sidelined after being involved in a car accident while on assignment covering the Titans’ preseason game against the Chiefs in Kansas City.
He broke two vertebrae in his neck and was knocked unconscious after suffering a concussion. He suffered several facial lacerations, including one in the right eye, and also injured a rib.
The cab Layman and a friend were riding in was T-boned by a Cadillac, which failed to stop at an intersection. It collided with the cab on the passenger side where Layman was seated.
“I blacked out and only remember seeing the Cadillac coming at us pretty fast,” Layman said. “The next thing I remember was waking up in the emergency room. While I was laying there I was thinking, ‘I haven’t heard them say anything too serious, so it must not be that bad, even though I’m still here in the ER.’ And then I heard ‘broken neck’ and I thought, ‘OK, so it is pretty serious.’”
Serious enough to keep Layman off the air probably until mid-October.
He was released from the hospital in Kansas City on Monday when his mom picked him up and drove him back to Champaign, Ill., which is where he grew up.
Layman will have to wear a neck brace for six weeks.
He already has been given a clean bill of health from an eye doctor and had his stitches from the lacerations removed Friday.
Layman said it took being off the air for him to realize how entrenched he has become in Nashville since he came to Channel 5 in 2011.
“I am fully aware of how fortunate I am and feel like God has blessed me in a lot of ways because it wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been. And I’ve been totally overwhelmed by the support that has come from people in the Nashville community,” he said. “As someone who moved into a community five years ago, you wonder how much people feel that you are one of their own, and at this point I could not feel more like a Nashvillian or one of Tennessee’s own.”
Travis returning to ‘3HL’ as a weekly guest
College football media mogul Clay Travis will host a new weekly national television show and also return to the local radio airwaves.
Travis launched “Countdown To Kickoff” on Friday night. The show, which originates from Los Angeles, will air each Friday at 11 p.m. through the conference championship games on Fox Sports 1.
He also will return to “3HL” on 104.5-FM The Zone for a weekly segment at 5:30 p.m. Tuesdays through the college football season.
Travis served as a co-host on the popular “3HL” show along with Brent Dougherty and former Titan Blaine Bishop from 2010 to 2014.
Travis was replaced by Mickey Ryan when he chose not to accept the station’s offer for a contract extension in August 2014.
“I still listen to ‘3HL’ and all the shows on The Zone when I’m riding around in my car; it’s the default button on my radio,” Travis said. “Brent, Blaine and Mickey are all great guys, and I’m glad they’ve continued to have success with the show. I’ve missed doing radio and look forward to being back on with them each Tuesday.”
Travis said he is working on a national radio deal for himself, which he hopes to have finalized “in the near future.”
As for his new hourlong TV show, Travis hopes to give viewers the first preview for each weekend’s games.
He will be joined by an in-studio rotating cast, including analysts Matt Leinart, Dave Wannstedt, Stewart Mandel, Bruce Feldman, George Wrighster, Petros Papadakis and Lindsey Thiry.
“I’ve never hosted a show before, so this is kind of an intriguing new step and a new challenge,” Travis said.
The start of the show could vary depending on any live broadcasts Fox Sports 1 is carrying.
“If people are still awake or want to get their college football fill the night before kickoff, we’ll be on,” Travis said. “It should be fun. And we’ve got a good cast, from a guy who won a Heisman Trophy (Leinart) to Stew and Bruce, who are two of the best college football writers.”
Former Ensworth receiver returns as a coach
Former Ensworth receiver David Dingess has joined the Tigers staff as an assistant coach.
Dingess made a spectacular touchdown catch with six seconds remaining to help Ensworth secure its first state championship in 2010.
He graduated in May from Furman, where he was a three-year letterman.
Zito sells mansion in California for $8.15M
Former Cy Young winning pitcher Barry Zito, who spent most of the season with the Sounds, recently sold his mansion in Kentfield, Calif., for $8.15 million, according to the San Jose Mercury News.
The 7,116-square-foot home has three bedrooms, a large formal living room, a pool, spa and guesthouse.
Zito’s main residence in San Diego is being refurbished. He plans to live in Nashville until February.
Trevecca surprises former star with hall of fame announcement
Trevecca sports information director Greg Ruff surprised Trojans basketball great Mariska Reed Harris by showing up at a football game Harris attended Friday night and telling her in front of the crowd that she had been elected to the Trojans Sports Hall of Fame.
Harris is now the girls basketball coach at Ravenwood, which played a home football game Friday against Mt. Juliet.
Harris, a former Ezell-Harding standout, played at Trevecca from 2004-08 and finished as the school’s second-all-time leading scorer (1,719 points). She is the all-time leader in made free throws (488) and tied with Jennifer Bognar in all-time games played (137).
She joined Katie Carter Douglas, a former volleyball player from Father Ryan, and Brittiany Johnson Tate, a former softball player from Pulaski, who already had been told they were part of the 2016 Hall of Fame class.
One more former athlete will join Harris, Douglas and Tate and is expected to be announced this month.
10-under par sets course record at The Grove
College Grove resident Courtney Shelton set the course record at The Grove on Wednesday.
She fired a 10-under 62 after making an eagle, nine birdies, seven pars and only one bogey.
She hit 16 greens and had only 25 putts.
Former Titan Cramer returns as team chaplain
Former Titans fullback/tight end Casey Cramer is the team’s new chaplain.
Cramer, 33, is the director of children and families at Christ Presbyterian Church.
He played for the Titans in 2006 and 2007 and for part of the 2008 season.
Cramer also spent time with the Dolphins, Buccaneers, Jets and Panthers.
Kok wins TPGA major tournament
Johan Kok, the general manager at the soon-to-open Hideaway at Arrington Golf Course, won the Yamaha Players Championship on Tuesday.
It is one of the major tournaments on the Tennessee Professional Golf Association Tour and was played at Foxland Harbor in Gallatin.
Kok shot a 71-66 137.
Loren Personett (68-71 139), the general manager at McCabe, and Kelvin Burgin (68-71 139), the pro at Cumberland Bear Trace, tied for second.
Kok played in the PGA Championship for the second consecutive year in August.
Vintage car show coming to Beech Bend
More than 1,500 vintage cars and trucks will be on display at the fourth annual Goodguys Nostalgia Nationals at Beech Bend Raceway Park on Sept. 18-20.
There also will be vintage drag car racing on the quarter-mile track, an auto parts swap meet and lot of exhibits.
Tickets are $25, $6 for ages 7-12 and free for under 6.
For more information, visit good-guys.com.
German hops to play in experimental league
Mike German, Tennessee State’s all-time passing yards leader, hopes to play in the Fall Experimental Football League, which is designed to serve as a feeder system to the NFL.
The FXFL started play in October 2014.
German will be among 150 players who will participate in a tryout Sept. 20 in Brooklyn, N.Y. Scouts from several NFL teams are expected to attend.
German, a four-year starter at TSU, was not selected in the 2015 NFL Draft. He was invited to a free-agent tryout with the Titans.
He is TSU’s career-leader in passing yards (8,664), completions (655) and attempts (1,142), and he is sixth in touchdowns (65).
Mt. Juliet golfer rallies to win senior amateur
Terry McAngus of Mt. Juliet erased a 7-shot deficit to claim the 37th annual Tennessee Women’s Senior Amateur Championship on Wednesday at Sevierville Golf Club.
McAngus shot a final round 2-under par 70 for a three-day total of 226 to claim her first Tennessee state championship.
Thirty-six hole leader Maggie Scott of Charleston finished second (228) and Lynda Wimberly of Brentwood was third (230).
If you have an item for Midstate Chatter, contact Mike Organ at 615-259-8021 and on Twitter @MikeOrganWriter.
SPORTS ON NASHVILLE TV
The top five ratings for local sporting events on television for Aug. 24-30.
1. NFL preseason: Titans-Chiefs, 12.1 rating
2. NFL preseason: Cardinals-Raiders, 6.9 rating
3. NFL preseason: Seahawks-Chargers, 6.3 rating
4. NFL preseason: Texans-Saints, 5.5 rating
5. NFL preseason: Bengals-Bucs, 4.6 rating
Each rating point is equal to 10,028 Nashville homes. Note: Local ratings for the SEC Network are not available at this point
Source: Mark Binda, WTVF-5 program & research director.