Return to Transcripts main page


Rutgers Basketball Coach Fired; Conservatives Slam Jim Carrey; Court Backs Streaming Broadcast TV; Ellen Announces "Finding Dory"

Aired April 3, 2013 - 10:30   ET



CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: I have breaking news to tell you about. Rutgers University has fired basketball Coach Mike Rice. You saw that video of ESPN of Coach Rice abusing basketball players during a practice session throwing basketballs at them and hurling abusive comments, homophobics and other comments I can't tell you on TV.

We did received a statement from the Rutger's athletic director Tim Pernetti. And I'm going to read it to you right now. He said quote "I am responsible for the decision to attempt a rehabilitation of Coach Rice. Dismissal and corrective action were debated in December and I thought it was in the best interest of everyone to rehabilitate, but I was wrong. Moving forward, I will work to regain the trust of the Rutgers community."

So let's talk about this some more with "USA Today" college athletics reporter Dan Wolken. Welcome, Dan.

DAN WOLKEN, "USA TODAY": Thank you for having me.

COSTELLO: That was fast.

WOLKEN: They had to do it. They really had no choice. There was no way Rutgers was going to be able to run their basketball program if Mike Rice had stayed. And I think the question people in college athletics are asking, having seen this tape, is what took so long?

COSTELLO: Exactly. We're going to show you the tape again just so people understand what exactly Coach Rice did during this practice session but the athletic director thought that he could rehabilitate the coach after all of this. Is this common practice within universities?

WOLKEN: I don't think so. You know I've been to hundreds of basketball practices, I've seen coaches at their most maniacal. I've never seen anything like I saw on tape yesterday. It horrified me. You can't throw basketballs at people's heads. You can't call kids in this day and age those names. People don't send their kids to college to get called those names by a basketball coach, they just don't. And I think he had anger issues going back to his previous job at Robert Morris, everybody knew about them.

And you know Tim Pernetti wanted a fiery coach but this guy went over the line clearly many, many times and -- and I don't think there was any question he had to go.

COSTELLO: OK, so Pernetti wanted a fiery coach. What do you mean by that? Like he go right up to the line and if they go over the line it's like you're out?

WOLKEN: Well look, there's something to be said for aggressive coaching for somebody to push players to be their best but in this day and age you cannot be abusive. And I think that Mike Rice was clearly abusive many, many times over the course of three years.

And when Tim Pernetti saw that tape in December -- and I've known Tim for a long time. He's very well respected in the college athletics community, considered one of the smarter people. I don't know what he was thinking. This was not a first offense as he called it yesterday. This was going on many times over three years.

COSTELLO: So do you think his job would be in jeopardy, too? I would suspect it might.

WOLKEN: Well I think that this was sort of your finger in the wind leadership, the kind of see where the public reaction was and now having seen how overwhelming Tim Pernetti had to make a move. This is not leadership but I think that Pernetti is trying to save his job. Whether he will or not, I'm not sure.

COSTELLO: Oh do we have a quick bite from Pernetti? OK, well -- let's listen now, this is the athletic director from Rutgers. I'm sorry. Well who is this we're going to listen to. I'm sorry this is the coach. Let's listen.




COSTELLO: OK. So we just wanted to show you an example of what kind of behavior on the basketball court we're talking about. If there was any thought at all that this coach might be rehabilitated and that maybe the public wouldn't find out about this because although Mr. Pernetti said they were -- they strive to be transparent at Rutgers, obviously they didn't release this tape. This tape was released on ESPN. I don't know how ESPN got it but I mean, it wasn't transparent to the Rutgers family until it appeared on television.

WOLKEN: Right.

COSTELLO: So it makes you wonder how much more of this is going on at other universities.

WOLKEN: Well, a lot of times at universities they will go at great lengths to protect a winning coach. Mike Rice was a losing coach. He had not been competitive in the Big East. And I think that's what baffled people yesterday when they saw this tape is why would the Rutgers administration and Tim Pernetti in particular want to keep Mike Rice having seen what they saw? Because it's not like he was bringing a lot of value to the athletic department in terms of wins and losses.

COSTELLO: Exactly. So I'm sure there will be more to this story because I do suspect that athletic director might be in trouble. Dan Wolken from "USA Today", thank you so much for being with us. We appreciate it.

WOLKEN: Thank you.

COSTELLO: We'll be right back.


COSTELLO: The comedian Jim Carrey versus conservatives? Yes you heard it right, the comedian sparking outrage among some on the right after Carrey's music video mocked actor and former NRA president Charleston Heston.


JIM CARREY, ACTOR: Charleston Heston movies are no longer in demand. His immortal soul may lay forever in the sand. The angels wouldn't take him up to heaven like he planned, because they couldn't drive that gun from his cold dead hand.


COSTELLO: The video goes on but it's so foul in parts we can't show you the whole thing. The title of the video is "Cold Dead Hands". It's a spoof on one of the Heston's famous quotes. Carrey initially shrugged off the controversy but now he says "Hold on, folks I don't want to take away your guns".

In a "Huffington Post" op-ed Carrey writes in part quote, "Every American has the right to speak their mind. Every American has the right to bear arms but it's up to every American to draw the line when it comes to the type of guns that are considered a reasonable means of self-defense."

Joining me now is Democratic strategist Robert Zimmerman; and CNN contributor and analyst for the Blaze Will Cain. Welcome to you both.



COSTELLO: Will, I'm pretty sure you probably watched the Jim Carrey video in totality. So in your --

CAIN: I saw it.

COSTELLO: -- please characterize is for us.

CAIN: Really -- well, he makes fun of Charleston Heston a dead man who marched in civil rights marches, who is no longer around to defend himself. Suggests his rotting in hell. Said that gun owners have small -- well what term should I use on CNN -- Jim Carrey's word is "glands".

Said that gun control opponents were heartless mf-ers. And basically said we're in league with mass murderers. So does that encapsulate it for you?

COSTELLO: Yes. And then Jim Carrey thought you know it's supposed to be funny. Carrey actually send this home bed he was surprised by the quote, "level of hatred he faced due to just a difference of opinion." Robert --


CAIN: Hold on. Hold on. Hold on can I -- and I'm going to give Robert his air time but let's just be clear, he just -- I just rattled off to ad hominem attack where he called anyone who opposes his point of view a variety of names and the fact that some people got upset and pointed out that he was a Canadian and an actor all of a sudden he raises his hand and like hey, hey, when did this get so personal?

ZIMMERMAN: You know Will, I -- well, I just have to point out this is not about Jim Carrey versus the conservatives. Because that video is disrespectful I think to all of us who care about gun safety legislation. It played on the most offensive stereotypes about rural Americans.

And so I think it's -- no Jim Carrey's op-ed in the "Huffington Post" is very heartfelt and very sincere and I think people should read that. But clearly that video was such a distraction. It's like Michael Moore's comment about the autopsy photos from the mass shootings. It was -- it's just a distraction from the real issues before our country right now which is getting 60 votes in the senate to stop the right-wing from engaging in a filibuster so we can't even get a vote on gun safety legislation. That's the real issue.

COSTELLO: Well you're right, Robert. You're right Robert it is a distraction. So why do people who are for gun control keep doing this? Because you can't vilify the other side and expect to come to any compromise?

ZIMMERMAN: It happens on the right and the left. Ted Nugent engaged in hateful, vile rhetoric on, of course, the left --

COSTELLO: What is it tit for tat, what are we kids? Are we children?


ZIMMERMAN: No, no I'm not saying, excuse me Carol. Let me make my point. I'm not suggesting that it's justified. But I'm saying the left climbs -- goes after the right for people like Ted Nugent when they engage in that kind of rhetoric and of course the pile on is now with Jim Carrey. And I think in this case deservedly so.

The point is simply often it's driven by media, it's driven by social media as well and it really is a distraction from the substantive issues. COSTELLO: OK, President Obama is heading to Colorado today Will. He's going to talk to the police there and he's going to visit the theater in Aurora where all those people were killed and then he's going to use that as a backdrop to push Congress to pass these gun control measures.

Do you think there's a chance?

CAIN: Do I think there's a chance?

COSTELLO: Do you think there's a chance?


COSTELLO: That any sort of gun control measure will pass congress?

CAIN: Perhaps a slight chance on expanding background checks but many of the proposals, such as a ban on assault weapons have -- have withered away and rightfully so. It's for the same reason that you asked Robert why so many on the gun control proponent side indulge in emotionalism or distraction or ad hominem attack, because reason is not on their side. They don't have the ability to point out a single functional difference between assault weapon and the majority of semiautomatic weapons in this court. It doesn't make any sense.

So what do you do when you don't have the logical reason on your side? You indulge in emotionalism.


ZIMMERMAN: Well I'll tell you what does makes sense Will. Will I'll tell you what does makes sense. No Will, here are some facts that might be helpful to you. For example, when the (inaudible) of Columbine remember, if there were a limit number of bullets in a magazine clip if it were reduced to 10, that would have saved lives in Columbine, it would have save lives in Tucson, it would have save lives in Newtown, Connecticut.

Here's another fact. When we have universal background checks, it provides a much more effective effort to take away guns from people who are mentally unstable or criminals. Already under the present system, 78,000 gun applications were rejected for people who are unfit under the present background check.

So there are real facts here. They are not about emotionalism in both side you are right engagement. But the issue now is about the safety of our country and the safety of our citizens. That's what this debate is about.

COSTELLO: All right. We have to leave it there. Robert Zimmerman, Will Cain many thanks to weigh in this morning.



COSTELLO: Broadcast TV or you on your iPhone or tablet. It's happening now and it's not making cable companies really happy.


COSTELLO: It's 47 minutes past the hour. Time to take a look at our top stories.

Angelina Jolie wants you to look good and help girls in Afghanistan at the same time. Jolie is launching a new jewelry line called Style Jolie. The sales will benefit an all-girl school in Afghanistan. Of course, Jolie is known for her work as an actress and as a U.N. goodwill ambassador.

You could soon ditch that expensive cable bill. A new Internet TV service has just won a big court battle. Business correspondent Zain Asher explains.


ZAIN ASHER, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Then, the flat screen. Now the television industry is preparing for another revolution. This time with these.

CHET KANOJIA, CEO, AEREO: The one key media point that's missing on the Internet is television so that's our (inaudible).

ASHER: Meet Chet Kanojia. For $80 a year his company Aereo will let you stream live TV from network stations like ABC and NBC straight on to your phone or iPad, all day every day.

JOHN BERGMAYER, SENIOR STAFF ATTORNEY, PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE: There's a lot of demand for people to be able to access content over their computers in a more flexible way. People want to pay less.

KANOJIA: We think of Aereo as the simplest way you can get television online. There's not box, no wires, nothing required.

ASHER: It works by using these tiny antennae about the size of a dime to capture broadcast signals. It's precisely the reason the network giants are having trouble sleeping. In a statement, the National Association of Broadcasters called Aereo's operation illegal, agreeing with other critics who called it a sham.

BERGMAYER: This is a controversial service for sure and the legal fight isn't done.

ASHER: Networks say the start-up has found a clever way to make money from content it doesn't own. But lucky for Aereo, David is winning against Goliath. On Monday, U.S. appeals court have found that Aereo's technology violated no copyright laws -- a huge blow to the 17 network broadcasters who had hoped it would retreat back into its cave.

KANOJIA: Aereo is not attached to any of these media companies. Technology is something that media companies typically are so good at. And but we think it brings great opportunity. BERGMAYER: I think it's very likely that you're going to see a lot more flexible ways for people to watch TV because if the broadcasters are smart, they are going to start responding to consumer demand. And if they don't start doing that, then Aereo and companies like Aereo are going to continue to do it for them.


COSTELLO: Zain Asher joins us know from New York. Sounds like good news for me and bad news for the cable companies.

ASHER: Yes, pretty much. You know, Carol, the ruling basically says that by using Aereo, consumers are essentially renting out their own tiny little antennae and that's no different from them buying their own from, for example, Best Buy.

But consumers as you mentioned, means more choice, right? You can now watch TV on your iPhone on the go. But cable companies, it does completely undercut them price-wise. But this could actually be a great opportunity for them. Cable now have the option of replicating what Aereo does and they could actually use it as leveraging power to negotiate the transmission fees they pay to networks.

We'll be watching -- Carol.

COSTELLO: OK. Thank you very much, Zain Asher reporting live from New York.

As we told you earlier, Rutgers University has fired the basketball coach Mike Rice for this abusive video from basketball practice where he hurled insults at his players and abused them physically by throwing basketballs at their legs and their head.

We now have a statement from the Rutgers University president, Robert Barchi. This is his statement, quote, "Coach Rice cannot continue to serve effectively in a position that demands the highest levels of leadership, responsibility and accountability. He cannot continue to coach at Rutgers University. Therefore, Tim Pernetti" -- the athletic director -- "and I have jointly decided to terminate Mike Rice's employment at Rutgers."

CNN will have much more on the story in the hours to come. We're going to take a break, we'll be right back.


COSTELLO: I'm so excited about this. The movie may have been called "Finding Nemo" but its breakout star was absolutely Dory.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When I get you down, you know what you're going to do?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't want to know what you have to do.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming.


COSTELLO: I love that movie and that fish. And now Dory is back. Ellen DeGeneres the voice of Dory announced the long-awaited sequel on her talk show.


ELLEN DEGENERES, TALK SHOW HOST: And today I am proud to officially announce that Pixar is making a sequel to "Finding Nemo". And here's the good news. They say I'm one of top -- the five top contenders to play the part of Dory. No, I will be Dory again, which is the most fun in the world to play Dory.

And actually the entire sequel is about Dory. The name of the movie is called "Finding Dory" and that is the name of the movie. That's it.


COSTELLO: That is so awesome. "SHOWBIZ TONIGHT" show host, A.J. Hammer joins us now. What took them so long? Did they forget?

A.J. HAMMER, HLN HOST: Everybody's been wondering why it took so long. And Carol, it could be because Pixar was finally able to get the entire cast back together including Ellen and Albert Brooks, of course, along with the director Andrew Stanton.

Maybe it's because of the success the studio saw last year when it re- released "Finding Nemo" as a 3D film. Or it could be because they finally have a script they like . The story will reportedly explain how Dory wound up wandering the ocean alone when she was found in the firm. But really I'm thinking it could very well be because of all the lobbying that Ellen DeGeneres has done to get the sequel made.

You have to take a look at how she pushed for "Finding Dory".


DEGENERES: They made a movie on this and then it was so successful that they made a sequel which is what happens when movies are very, very successful except in the case of "Finding Nemo".

I thought I'd watch the Super Bowl and it's fun. But it's just something I'll do once then I'll never do again. Like what's the word for it, oh yes, "Finding Nemo."

I understand that making "Finding Nemo 2" would be hard because it's not easy to make a good sequel and it's almost impossible to get the entire cast together with the same writers and directors and producers. Anyway that brings us to "Shrek 4".


HAMMER: Yes, she mentioned it a couple of times, Carol. And I must point out, this role for Ellen playing the voice of Dory predates her talk show. So imagine how much we're going to hear from her about this movie as we get closer to its release, which isn't for another two years.

COSTELLO: Oh, but still I love Ellen so much it doesn't matter and I love Dory, too. I'm a happy woman. A.J. Hammer, many thanks. We'll be right back.


COSTELLO: Thank you so much for joining me today. I'm Carol Costello. Thanks for your talk back responses, too -- I always appreciate them.

CNN NEWSROOM continues right now.