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Berry declares PEDs – Performance Enhancing Drinks – vital for surviving 24-hour Tournament Challenge Marathon

Even tireless Adam Schefter (L) had his limits during ESPN's 2016 Fantasy Football Marathon, much to the delight of Matthew Berry. (Photo courtesy of Matthew Berry/ESPN)
Even the tireless Adam Schefter (L) had his limits during ESPN’s 2016 Fantasy Football Marathon, much to the delight of Matthew Berry. (Photo courtesy of Matthew Berry/ESPN)

Pulling off an all-nighter is by no means easy, especially when you’re in front of the camera with millions of fans seeking your analysis, advice and wisdom.

This was certainly true for Matthew Berry and Adam Schefter when the pair got each other through all 28 hours of the first-ever Fantasy Football Marathon last fall.

Sleepless in Bristol: Mike Golic, Jr. on what it takes to go wire-to-wire
ESPN Radio’s Mike Golic, Jr. and Reese Waters will be paired together on “Fantasy Island” for the entire 24 hours of ESPN’s Tournament Challenge Marathon. They will provide the latest updates while monitoring signups and fan activity. Golic Jr. is a veteran of ESPN’s 2016 Fantasy Football Marathon and offers these insights for his “rookie” partner, Waters.

What did you learn from the last marathon?
What I learned from the last marathon was the importance of proper snacking. The minute you stop eating, you’re already asleep. And since the veteran Stugotz [ESPN Radio’s Jon “Stugotz” Weiner] handled the food requests last time, I feel it’s my duty to make sure Reese is well fed.

Any advice for Reese on staying awake and on his game through the 24 hours?
My advice to Reese on staying up is to make your shower count. We found a shower in the basement of Fantasy Island near hour 20 last time, and it’s no exaggeration to say that it saved the marathon. Will be vital again this time around.

– By Tara Chozet

In fact, it was a lot tougher than they thought it would be. So, as ESPN’s first 24-hour Tournament Challenge Marathon begins tonight with the NCAA Women’s Selection Special Presented by Capital One on ESPN at 7 p.m. ET, we asked Berry to provide a few tips for his college basketball colleagues.

1. Realize it is a much longer day.
You think it’s just 24 hours, but you’ll have productions meetings, research and need a long time in makeup before you can do 24 hours straight. All told I wound up being awake for 40 hours straight.

2. Energy drinks are your friend.
Or coffee. Or caffeinated beverages. Something. I was pounding them like crazy. Just know that you’re not getting through this without taking PEDs. . . Performance Enhancing Drinks.

3. Keep talking!
As I was getting scheduled, producers wanted to “take it easy on me” and let me rest late at night/early morning, doing just one segment an hour. Which makes sense in theory but truthfully, resting is when I found myself most tired. When I was on TV and engaging with others, I felt the most awake and didn’t think about how tired I was.

4. Compete to stay awake.
If nothing else, make sure you at least stay awake longer than your on-air partner. That way you can take a picture like this one [above] at 4:15 a.m.

5. Don’t do anything (too) stupid.
You’re going to be on live TV for 24 hours straight. Final, best piece of advice I have? Don’t do anything stupid. When thinking about what you want to say or do, especially around hour 21 or so, just remember those three simple words: DON’T. BE. STUPID.

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