In 2008, he spoke to a group of students from the University of South Florida Saint Petersburg Department of Journalism and Media Studies. He also shared his thoughts with WUSF's University Beat on the "24/7" cycle of both news and sports reporting.
"So you can miss what really matters, and I think that’s unfortunate," Deford said. "We gotta do a better job of editing. We don’t edit very well anymore in any of the media, we’re very bad at that and of course that’s the whole basis of journalism."
And when asked, Deford said he had a simple wish as to how he would like to be remembered after over fifty years in sports journalism.
"If people remember what I wrote, then that’s the greatest honor that I could receive,” he said.
Deford was 78. He retired from NPR earlier this year after 1,656 commentaries.