>Tom Hammond...NOT! Marty Liquori, Larry Rawson
>would be good. Verne Lundquist is not bad at
>track. Dwight is always very good. Carol Lewis,
Most track announcers on North American TV should not be allowed to have a microphone. There are exceptions, but we're stuck with a bad group. Couldn't we import someone from the BBC, or an Aussie or a Kiwi?
What about content? I'm sure our fantasy channel would broadcast infomercials about 12 hours a day, but what else? A movie a week, like on ESPN classic (there are TONS at www.runningmovies.com), some old footage too. With a lot of reruns, you might actually fill up a whole day -- especially if you got a Eurosport feed for the non-Golden League meets.
>All the T&F staff guys would do a good job, so
>why select one over the other.>>
Thanks for the vote of confidence, but I've got to tell you, doing TV is no easy task. I can only say this by inference, becuase the closest I've come is doing voice-overs for IAAF videos, but after thousands of hours behind a mike in stadiums, it's not remotely the same thing. I have admiration for most of the people who do anything on TV, even the mediocre ones.
>>Tom Hammond...NOT! Marty Liquori, Larry
>would be good. Verne Lundquist is not
>track. Dwight is always very good.
Most track announcers on
>North American TV should not be allowed to have
>a microphone. There are exceptions, but we're
>stuck with a bad group. Couldn't we import
>someone from the BBC, or an Aussie or a
Didn't OLN have the Golden League meets a few years ago when ESPN elected not to carry them? I'm thinking it was back around 1998, 1999 or 2000. At the time, my cable provider din't carry OLN, so I was out of luck.
Even with ESPN carrying the Golden League this year, OLN could have a great series with the GPI and GPII meets using the European television feed. Who has the connections to pitch it to them?
I have always liked Tom Hammond. He is a very elegant play by play man, who doesn't say stupid things, unlike some other American broadcasters. I am surprised at the track community's dislike of Tom Hammond. This looks like "us track guys and no one else mentality" at it again.
There's more than just the insider/outsider mentality at work here, IMHO. People are also shooting the messenger becuase they don't like the message. In this case, TV doesn't do a very good job, in general, or presenting a track meet so that a track nut likes it. We want nothing but action-action-action. Clearly, the networks feel (know?) they can't sell that, so they have to do it antoher way. But I digress...
I wasn't impressed with Hammond's early work on track, but I know from having talked with him that he works hard on his craft and has studied the sport quite a bit through the years and now does a very good job. You just have to appreciate the context in which he works (which isn't his choice).
C'mon Gar! I'm shocked that a hardcore fan like you would defend a clown like Hammond. Isn't it obvious that he knows virtually nothing about the sport and simply reads a script when he offers "insights" about the events and athletes? Can you imagine an announcer who knows nothing about basketball reading aloud a bio of Shaq or Kobe, or announcing that the object of the game is to put the ball through the hoop? I suppose Hammond is there to appeal to non-fans, and he may (see prior post). But I loathe him.
Carol Lewis is atrocious too. Yesterday she made so many mis-statements that she had to include "excuse me" in every sentence.
Thank god the networks usually see fit to have at least one announcer who knows what he's talking about, like Stones.
I thank Anon for reminding us of Vic Holcheck (sp?). That guy was great.
>C'mon Gar! I'm shocked that a hardcore fan like
>you would defend a clown like Hammond. Isn't it
>obvious that he knows virtually nothing about the
>sport and simply reads a script when he offers
>"insights" about the events and athletes? Can
>you imagine an announcer who knows nothing about
>basketball reading aloud a bio of Shaq or Kobe,
>or announcing that the object of the game is to
>put the ball through the hoop?
Dwight is the guy, he knows our sport inside out, is honest (eg: saying the shot was a let-down yesterday), and can explain technique, history, tactics etc. I'm actually warming to Carol for the same reasons. As a Brit in the States I can't emphasise enough how awful the coverage is here compared to Europe. I have given up hope for T&F on TV here, it simply does not fit into the culture.
BTW...I use OJ, pre-trial, as an example of how bad it can get here. I heard him commentating on an indoor meet in the late 80's early 90's (?) and laughed out loud at his ignorance of T&F.
I honestly haven't seen as much of her (Lewis) as the others. I thought she was good on the couple of telecasts I saw, but maybe I have her overrated.
Tom Hammond has certainly improved and works hard at it. He actually does a good job. But I can't overlook that he's a Kentucky boy and he gives my Vols a hard time occasionally on basketball telecasts. He's been doing SEC hoops for as long as I can remember, going back to the days when his color man was Joe "String Music" Dean.
Play by play folk arent supposed to do the technical jargon. That's a job for the color commentators. I think Tom Hammond is the best play by play announcer on TV right now. If a play by play man talked technical the way us track junkies wanted, what little track there is would be off the air.
Some of you guys sound like you were even hatin' on Jim McKay broadcasts of the 70s.
As far as "action and only action", let's be real: This is American Television. Though I will say that it has gone a couple of steps over the top, you are going to have some form of human interest. I don't have a problem with Gail Devers stories on her Graves Disease, Or Glory Anozie having to go back home after Sydney to bury her fiancee. Has anyone ever realised that adversity (besides talent) drives these athletes to the Olympic level as well?
As far as "action and only
>action", let's be real: This is American
Are you kidding me? Have you seen American Television's coverage of baseball, basketball, football, golf, NASCAR, or any other sport percieved as "major"? The problem is that the networks think they have to broaden the audience by putting in that crap. The truth is that real sports fans want to see real sports.
>As far as "action and only
>action", let's be
>real: This is American
>you kidding me? Have you seen American
>Television's coverage of baseball, basketball,
>football, golf, NASCAR, or any other sport
>percieved as "major"? The problem is that the
>networks think they have to broaden the audience
>by putting in that crap. The truth is that real
>sports fans want to see real sports.
You are absolutely correct. I still believe that human interest stories about overcoming adversity to get to that level is fine. The problem is that it's in over over over over over overkill. Peace.
I usually make sure I am watching any meets with other track fans. We provide our own commentary, and occasionally catch some of the unintentional hilarity from the more green announcers. In short, for us, it doesn't matter who's on. The way it's presented right now, the general public isn't going to develop more interest, so the low level of knowledge displayed by a lot of the talking heads makes no difference.
>I still believe that human interest
>stories about overcoming adversity to get to
>that level is fine. The problem is that it's in
>over over over over over overkill. Peace.
CBC's Olympic coverage does the human interest stuff, but they rarely let it last more than 30 seconds (and usually it's more like 10 seconds). Their only problem is that their announcers can literally take interesting sports and make them boring. Even Don Cherry's foil on "Coach's Corner" is an easy target because he has no personality whatsoever.
i agree hammond, is mediocre, but has improved in the last 12 years. he is a lot better than charlie jones (88), brent musburger (93 and 95), terry gannon (01). those guys were awful !
espn has used rawson, liquori and varsha,but those guys are only good for marathons.
masback was good and pasionate about the sport, but has had another role now for seven years.
carol lewis has improved in the last 10 years, but still makes a lot of mistakes. there are no other women so she will always be on as the "female expert".
with so many retired athletes there are a lot of analyst types, but clearly dwight stones is the best and has been around for 15 years. nobody knows or cares about the field events like he does.