Monday, April 12, 2010

Open Thread: Favorite Sports Commentators

When watching baseball or college football, who do we turn to for sports analysis and commentary and who can't we stand? Here are some of my favorites:

Jim Rome - Dad and I have been listening to Rome's radio show before Jim Rome Is Burning on ESPN and before he was syndicated. His swagger is infectious and he's usually spot-on with his takes.

Michelle Beadle and Colin Collinsworth - These two go well with one another on SportsNation. That, and it also helps that Colin's both funny & accurate and Michelle's easy on the eyes.

Lee "Hacksaw" Hamilton (local) - Every afternoon, he boasts & brags that the first 15 min. of his radio show are the best 15 min. on sports radio. He delivers on that promise, bringing up everything that's going on in the world of sports for the listeners to comment on.

Joe Buck - The Count will hate me for this, but he's not all that bad of a commentator. I don't understand all the hate he gets.

Dick Ensburg - He's one of the great veterans of sports announcers. Everyting he does - from football to his new home, calling games for the Padres - you feel like you're listening to someone who's been around the world many times over and has amazing stories to tell.

Who I can't listen to:

Skip Bayless - God, he's so fucking annoying. Everytime when he'n on ESPN 2's 1st and 10, I want to grab some duct tape and wrap it around his fucking mouth.

Scott Van Pelt - The guy's just boring.

Frank Calliendo (sp?) - Its always hit-or-miss with him on Fox NFL Sunday when he's making his picks and spoofing someone at the same time. Ok, its mostly him missing a good part of the time. Bring back Jimmy Kimmel.

EDIT From The Count:

Edit From The Count:
Sadly good sports personalities are a dying breed. Of Jonathan's list I do not agree with Rome or Buck. Buck because of his BS faux morality and the fact he thinks he's better than you and Rome just because he thinks he's better than you. BTW I used to love the rome show until he got political in 2000 and was campaigning for G.W. Bush on his show.

I like Michelle Beadle but not really for sports reasons. As Jonathan said she's easy on the eyes and she's really quite good on the show. She like many of her male colleagues make no secret about the fact that she dreams of someday replacing Deanna Farve but at least she is honest about it.

How does Skip Bayless still have a job? After he wrote a book claiming that Troy Aikman was gay? Who is Bayless blowing in Bristol to stay employed?
You can add almost every sports writer on Around The Horn to my can't stand list except maybe Bob Ryan and Jackie McMullen. McMullen for sure is not on my hate list. Great sports writer.

As for announcers. I grew up with Howard Cosell on Monday Night football and I loved the guy. Most people did though they wouldn't admit it. In fact most people claimed to hate him. Yet why has MNF never had anywhere close to the same ratings since he left? The guy was opinionated but more often than not he was right.

There are also legends like Dick Stockton and as Jonathan mentioned Dick Enberg who are reaching the end of their careers.


For College Football To me the best announcer is ABC's Brad Nessler. CBS's Vern Lunquist use to be really good but his time has past. Sean McDounugh sp? is another solid guy for College Football.

Speaking of needing to retire there is no sadder tale than that of Ron Franklin. That guy was one of, if not the best play by play guys ever he was always better than the more celebrated Kieth Jackson. Now he's just pathetic. All he does is bitch about games being too long about being awake and yell for players to be thrown out of games. He also misses a ton of calls and doesn't seem to do any homework anymore.


Pat Summerall who used to be a part of what many considered to be the best NFL announce team of all time in Summerall and Madden only works one game a year Now the Cotton Bowl in his home town of Dallas. But he too struggles now even in limited duty.


Brent Musburger has his fans, lots of them in fact, but I think he is one of the absolute worst announcers ever. And the further the game goes and the drunker he gets the worse he gets. "Big Game Brent" is awful.


There are 2 Mike Terico's. The one who doesn't have a rooting interest is pretty solid. The one who calls games involving Michigan teams is pathetic. I WILL NEVER FORGIVE HIM for his call of the 2005 Alamo Bowl. A professional network announcer openly rooting for Michigan and actually crying on air when Michigan lost.


Play by Play guys pretty much all suck! ok there are a few decent ones. In College Todd Blackledge, Gary Danielson (sometimes) Matt Millen (yes he really is a pretty good on tv) in the NFL Troy Aikman is surprisingly good and I don't mind Chris Colinsworth as much as many do.

College Basketball and NBA announcers are really bad. Many in College basketball like Dick Vitale and even Bill Raftery to some extent are more about themselves then they are about Basketball and are just horrid. Vitale especially BABY!

NBA is just full of testicle lickers. Last night ABC's crew of Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson better know as the Kobe Bryant Ball Washing Committee spent 10 minutes ripping Derick Fisher for a foul that cost the Lakers the game against Portland before Breen FINALLY pointed out Kobe committed the foul. Then they went back to bashing Fisher for Kobe's fuck up. The Best NBA guy maybe Dr. Jack Ramsey on the radio for ESPN. I miss Bill (Horrrrrrrrrrrrrrible) Walton on tv. He was the Cosell of his time.


That brings me to the worst announcer currently on TV and this guy is absolutely loved. Gus Johnson

Enthusiasm is one thing screaming the entire game is another. Making matters worse is now that Johnson has hit the big time for his screaming style he screams even more. A typical Gus Johnson call will often sound like this:

OH MY GOD! OH MY GOD HE JUST BURIED A 3 WITH 2 SECONDS LEFT OH MY GOD OH MY GOD THAT BRINGS GONZAGA'S LEAD TO 87-49


As for local guys we use to have Jim Rose on football and Randy Lee on Basketball. Rose was Godawful. I mean one of the worst announcers ever and he was mocked statewide for his incompetence.




He kept his job by constantly pimping for his boss AD Steve Pederson. When Pedey was fired Rose had a nervous breakdown (Not making this up) and was replaced with the very solid Greg Sharpe who still has the gig today.


Randy Lee on the other hand was really good so of course they fired him and replaced him with Kent Pavelka who was well know for his play by play here for years in football and basketball and for the most part well loved. But Pavelka too is now making a lot of mistakes (some say he always did) and his play by play guys after to cover for him.

6 comments:

The Dreaded Patrick said...

Jack Buck

Count Istvan said...

I think you meant Colin Cowherd. Oh and Joe Buck is a sanctimonious douchebag.

Jonathan said...

Why is that, Count?
I don't get the dislike towards him.

Count Istvan said...

My hatred of him goes back to his faux outrage at Randy Moss when Moss made a mooning gesture to the crowd in Green Bay. It was just so over the top. And of course there was No mention that Paker fans really did Moon the Vikings bus when it got in to the stadium.

They guys is just full of himself. Look how purdy I am people. He's a Diva.

The Dreaded Patrick said...

No count, I am big St Louis Cardinal baseball fan and my favorite sportscaster was Jack Buck. I agree Joe Buck is a douche as well.

Anonymous said...

My favorite memory of football sportscasters was back in the early 70's. Howard Cosell and Don Meridith and I forget the other one was covering a game in Kansas City. Kansas City was getting the shit kicked out of them. Near the end of the game, the tv camera showed this guy laying back in his chair, when he saw the camera he gave it the finger.

Meridith said to Cosell, I think he's telling us we're number 1.

john t

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