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24.11.07 1445
The 7 - Football - Dr Z's 9th Annual TV Commentator Awards
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Joseph Ryder
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#1 Posted on 8.2.07 1447.34
Reposted on: 8.2.14 1447.56
Arguably the most enjoyable column of 2007 has officially been released. ESPN's A-team, as expected, takes it on the chin as Kornheiser just gets railed on.

SI.com

    Originally posted by Dr. Z
    Week 6, Chicago at Arizona, a defining moment for the Cardinals and their coach, Denny Green, and their offensive coordinator, Keith Rowen. The Cardinals are driving for the victory. The Bears can't stop them, no matter what defense they throw up. Rookie QB Matt Leinart is killing them with underneath passes, the same way Peyton Manning did in the Super Bowl ... ironic, huh? Down the field they come. Theismann has talked to Rowen, who told him that he knew he could beat the Bears this way ... if only Green would let him do it, but the coach was bugged by Edgerrin James bitching about not being permitted to close out the contest. This was the knowledge that Theismann had in the booth, and at one point in the drive, he muttered, "Don't stop throwing." It just popped out.

    But they did stop. They reached the Chicago 23-yard line and brought in two tight ends and two running backs, the ultimate give up. Now Theismann had a decision to make. He could lay out his knowledge of the situation, as practically any honest announcer would, and it would have been fascinating, a real coup for a guy who has been much reviled during his career. But just then Kornheiser came up with one of his grade school pronouncements ... "You have to admit it, don't you ... you're rooting for them." And Joe, given the choice, opted for the low IQ route, a little bantering back and forth with his sidekick.

    Well, the Cards' heavy offense was stopped and they missed the field goal and lost the game. And in his postgame press conference Green went into some contrived rage thing about how the Bears were "anointed." And then he made Rowen the scapegoat and fired him. The viewers of ESPN could have been privy to all this ahead of time, they could have been in on a real scoop. But Theismann chose to ignore journalistic integrity and play marbles with Bozo the Clown. Personally, the whole thing makes me sick.



(edited by Joseph Ryder on 8.2.07 1248)
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Eddie Famous
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#2 Posted on 8.2.07 1732.18
Reposted on: 8.2.14 1733.48
I disagree with him about Tirico. He's pretty good, he's saddled with idiots though.
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#3 Posted on 8.2.07 1741.05
Reposted on: 8.2.14 1742.24
Well, he's certainly right about Theismann. Of course, that's offset by him liking Cris Collinsworth, who is the single worst national football commentator not named Theismann currently working.

Tim
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#4 Posted on 9.2.07 1640.50
Reposted on: 9.2.14 1641.15
I agree with his take on Madden/Michaels, who were miles better this season than they've been in the last couple of years on MNF. Madden, in particular, had a great roll of a few games where it seemed like he predicted every play before it happened (my mom's comment: "why doesn't the other team have a man listening to John Madden and then call the coach to warn him?")

Z didn't mention Jesse Palmer, who I actually thought was pretty good in the few games I heard him announce.
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#5 Posted on 9.2.07 1918.38
Reposted on: 9.2.14 1918.39
Could Madden and Michaels improvement this year have to do with the fact that, especially later in the season, they were calling less irrelevant clunker games and generally were guaranteed to have good material to work with (due to the flex schedule)? Z even pointed out that Madden and Michaels slipped a little in the last two weeks, when, due to impending end of the season, the games would again become irrelevant.
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#6 Posted on 9.2.07 1950.45
Reposted on: 9.2.14 1951.01
    Originally posted by EddieBurkett
    Could Madden and Michaels improvement this year have to do with the fact that, especially later in the season, they were calling less irrelevant clunker games and generally were guaranteed to have good material to work with (due to the flex schedule)? Z even pointed out that Madden and Michaels slipped a little in the last two weeks, when, due to impending end of the season, the games would again become irrelevant.


I think that has a lot to do with it. ABC had really got the shaft on a good portion of MNF games before the switch, and if you know it's gonna be a stinker, it's gotta be hard to excel for the game.

I largely agree with his rankings this year, although I dont like Randy Cross, and really like Moose and Stockton, but oh well. Rosen and Ryan are good together, as are Baldy/Albert.

BoromirMark
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#7 Posted on 12.2.07 1209.53
Reposted on: 12.2.14 1209.58
In general, I agree with his rankings. I have a bias against Baldinger, but that's just an offshoot of my bitterness towards the Lions and the fact that Baldy got stuck on a number of Lions games. I definitely agree with 5-star'ing the one-time ESPN team of Nessler, Jaws, and Vermeil. I remember watching that game expecting awkwardness from a bunch just thrown together, but I was blown away. Just good stuff from them.

Now, the MNF group. This Dr. Z calls Theismann "the only one who knows football". Um, Tirico's been calling college football for quite a while now and for a columnist who praised Nessler's college football resume, this omission seemed glaring. You'd think that Tirico would get the same accolades from Dr. Z, especially as he's at least just as good as Nessler. Seems like someone's hatred for a certain Washingtonian was blinding him. Certainly when it comes to the fact that, you know, Kornheiser has been covering the Redskins since the dawn of time and unless TK is a neanderthal, he'll have learned things about the game in all that time. But Dr. Z comes out and throws Tirico under the bus and unfairly ignores Kornheiser's credentials...why? Because he doesn't like Tony? Because he can't stand jokes during his football game? Kornheiser's the color guy, he provides COLOR. Not in-depth dissection of coverages. I can understand disliking the team and wishing for something better, especially when we were tantalized with the Nessler-Jaws-Vermeil combo. But the whole bit about the main MNF team from Dr. Z just seemed like an outright defaming attack and less of a criticism, which speaks volumes about the character of Dr. Z.

But maybe it's me. I don't get the Kornheiser hatred. I love PTI.

    Originally posted by bash91
    Well, he's certainly right about Theismann. Of course, that's offset by him liking Cris Collinsworth, who is the single worst national football commentator not named Theismann currently working.


This is another thing I don't get. Collinsworth is GOLD. He knows a ton, he spots little nuances when they happen, and he doesn't cowtow to politics when it comes to voicing his opinion. The only reason I can think of for people not liking him is he comes off as abrasive, so that might affect peoples impression of him.

(edited by BoromirMark on 12.2.07 1311)
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#8 Posted on 12.2.07 1301.07
Reposted on: 12.2.14 1301.12
Kornheiser's big problem this year was that he wasn't *doing* color. He was trying to have PTI in the broadcast booth, and he ended up talking over the game more times than not. The broadcast booth isn't the place to have extended discussions about one issue or another, make your point, let the play-by-play guy do his job, and move on. The thing that irked me about Kornheiser is that every time Theisman would make a stupid comment (which was a lot), Tony would spend the next twenty minutes picking it apart, sometimes forcing Theisman and Tirico to stop calling the game to shut him up. It might have gotten a little better as the season wore on, but at least this year, he clearly had no place in the booth.

As for the rankings, I agree with them for the most part. Dr. Z's always had WAY too much of a hard-on for line play (I don't think casual football fans could give a shit about what the offensive guard was doing on any given play), but whatever. I'm always a little shocked to hear Kevin Harlan doing football games, because he was the Timberwolves' local announcer back when I was really into the team, but he's come along pretty well.
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#9 Posted on 12.2.07 1548.56
Reposted on: 12.2.14 1550.31
Dr. Z isn't a doctor and he's a snob. I pooh-pooh his opinions, except I love Cris Collinsworth, too.
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