S.A. radio will gain a new sports talk show Monday with a familiar – and once-controversial – local voice at its helm.
That’s Walter Pasacrita, former longtime air personality and salesman for Ticket 760 (KTKR-AM), who, back in 2007, was blasted by both the media and the Spurs after an offensive skit featuring a fake Allen Iverson aired on the talk show he co-hosted.
Starting next week, Pasacrita will talk Spurs, Cowboys, Texas Longhorns and more. “San Antonio Sports Talk” will air from 4 to 6 p.m. weekdays on KONO-AM (860).
As sports fans likely already know, the AM side of KONO — which had been an S.A. destination for oldies for decades — switched formats more than a year ago.
Though KONO-FM continues as a top-rated popular hits station here, its AM sister now essentially belongs to CBS Sports Radio and its syndicated fare, such as “The Jim Rome Show.” The station also airs Missions games and UIW football.
Its latest venture is local talk, giving the two already existing afternoon drive sports hosts on Ticket 760 (Geoff Sheen) and ESPN 1250 (Jason Minnix and Dat Nguyen) some new competition.
To hear the not-exactly-humble Pasacrita talk, however, he has no competition — at least none of his caliber. What makes him different, he said in a phone chat Friday, “is I have more experience on the radio in San Antonio than the rest of those people, I’m more passionate about sports than the rest of those people. I don’t sugarcoat anything. . .and don’t let relationships get in the way of what should be stated. I tell it like it is.”
He does have many years of experience in this area – nearly 13, he said, having started on S.A. radio in 2000.
However, there are many here who, upon hearing his name, may still bristle from his part in an insensitive bit of radio that aired in spring of 2007 on the Ticket 760 show then co-hosted by Pasacrita and Jeff Vexler.
A recap: According to an Express-News story at the time, the locally produced skit, which included a fabricated interview with then-Denver Nuggets guard Iverson, contained references to Iverson and teammate Carmelo Anthony providing the Spurs drugs — something from their own “special stash” — before a game, implying that’s why Denver won.
The segment also included a mention of Iverson and other players cruising the River Walk looking for sex with “Mexican” women. In addition, the fake Iverson talked about firing a gun into the air with the bullet falling on a homeless person. That was OK, the impersonator said, because the man turned out to be an “illegal alien.”
Ouch. Deeming the skit highly inappropriate, the Spurs proceeded to sever ties with Pasacrita and Vexler.
“We don’t want them involved in any way, shape or form with Spurs programming,” was the way team spokesman Tom James put it.
However, Pasacrita said he’s long since made peace with the team.
“It wasn’t too long after that I apologized to Coach Popovich and R.C. Buford,” he said.
“I’ve mended the fence with the Spurs and have covered the Spurs since that time many, many times.”
However, he also pointed out — repeatedly — that he himself didn’t do anything wrong, “other than participating in that skit that we did.
“I never wrote it and I didn’t say anything controversial in it. The producer who put it together was fired at the time.”
As for making it up to offended listeners, the talk host stated he did apologize to the audience right after “the stupid skit” aired. “After it played out at 4:45 p.m., and we came back at the top of the hour at 5 p.m., I apologized to the listeners,” he recalled.
Now, he hopes to move on.
Pasacrita said he’s “thankful to the folks at Cox Media Group — owners of KONO — for wanting to do some live local sports,” adding the whole thing will be his baby. Not only will he host “San Antonio Sports Talk,” but he’ll executive produce it.
Come fall, he’ll also bring a Saturday morning show to the mix. Pasacrita will debut that at 10 a.m. Sept. 5 on KONO-AM.
Roger Allen, director of programming for KONO, said he’s thrilled to have Pasacrita. “We’re excited to have Walter on board” and that “his experience level and brand name in the market will be the first live local sports on CBS Sports 860.”
Credit to My San Antonio who originally published this article
Tony Bruno Relives Favorite Moments With Angelo Cataldi on 94 WIP
“I loved every day. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that.”
Tony Bruno has been a staple of the sports radio business for decades. Bruno is from Philadelphia and was teamed up in the early nineties with a duo still dominating the local airwaves there today, Angelo Cataldi and Al Morganti. The three reunited Thursday morning on 94 WIP to remember the glory days of their partnership and friendship.
One of the first moments Cataldi asked Bruno if he remembered was the update he did from a tree outside of their studio and the answer was an emphatic yes.
“Absolutely, it’s one of the highlights of my life – other than interviewing four Presidents and every sports athlete in history – there’s no bigger moment than me climbing up in the tree, which was obstructing our view of William Penn and the city skyline. That’s what I do, I was a man of action. I’m not one of these guys that talks the talk, I climb the tree to do whatever is necessary.”
More frivolity followed when Cataldi harkened back to a segment of ‘Damsels in Distress’ and a time in which Bruno was sent on the street during a snowstorm to help shovel people out of their driveways. Bruno quickly recalled, “Man of the people. I should run for – I should of run for Governor of Pennsylvania or Senate or something.”
Bruno added that his favorite rant (and one that Cataldi loved too) wasn’t about the Cowboys or sports at all. “My favorite was my Infinity Broadcasting rant where I went on one day and even ripped our bosses, all the way up to the top of Infinity Broadcasting.” Cataldi cackled and praised Bruno’s rants more before being interrupted by Bruno saying, “yeah, my only regret is I never really ripped Al (Morganti) the way I should have ripped him. I let him of the hook so many times.”
An insightful moment came at the end of the call when Cataldi asked rhetorically if Bruno ever thought they (Cataldi & Morganti) would still be doing this thirty years later and then asked if Tony ever regretted leaving.
“It was a tough decision, Ang,” Bruno answered. “I was given an ultimatum. When I came to work with you guys, I loved every day. Every day we had fun. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that. It wasn’t one of those, ‘oh I got to go; I’m too big for these guys’. I even turned the ESPN job down a couple of times.
“My kids were still younger then, I didn’t want to move. I didn’t have to move. They said just come up here on weekends and that’s how ESPN Radio started. So I was doing weekends and Tom Bigby (Program Director) didn’t like that either, told me it wasn’t going to work. It was a philosophical thing. When he told me, ‘you should go because we are not going to pay you what they’re paying you,’ I said ok.
Cataldi began to sign off with Bruno with genuine thanks: “I got to tell you something Tone, we are indebted to you for the rest of our lives because we both learned so much from you and you are one of the great talents that radio has ever had.”
Dodgers Temporarily Pull Broadcasters Off Road
“If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road.”
When the Los Angeles Dodgers visit the East Coast later this week, the men that call the action on TV and radio will not be with them. The games will instead be broadcast on AM570 LA Sports and SportsNet LA from their respective studios.
“Due to a few members of the Dodgers’ broadcast team having recently tested positive for COVID-19, and out of an abundance of caution, the Dodgers have decided to not travel their broadcasters to upcoming games in Philadelphia and Washington,” the Dodgers announced in a statement. Similar to the 2020 and 2021 MLB seasons, the games will be broadcast from Los Angeles,” reads a statement on the team’s Twitter account.
No further details are available, so the severity and the number of cases remain unknown.
Last September, both members of the Dodgers’ television play-by-play crew were forced into quarantine. Joe Davis was the first to test positive, followed later that month by Orel Hershiser.
On Wednesday, manager Dave Roberts told the media that the Dodgers’ roster and coaching staff are not effected.
“There’s there’s no symptoms in the clubhouse. I think that as far as the upstairs, as an organization, we’re all just trying to be very cautious. But as far as in the clubhouse, coaches, training staff, nothing like that.”
If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road. 2022 was supposed to be a return to normal for the Dodgers and many other teams after not letting broadcasters travel in 2020 and 2021.
Pat McAfee: ‘No One Will Disrespect Jim Rome On My Show’
“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle.”
Jim Rome is a sports radio icon and Pat McAfee recognizes that.
On The Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday, McAfee was talking to co-host A.J. Hawk about how Rome trended recently on Twitter.
This happened after news of Tom Brady’s FOX Sports deal surfaced, and a list of the top paid sports media personalities was compiled. Rome came in behind Brady at number two making a reported $30 million a year, and many were surprised by that number. McAfee wasn’t.
“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle,” he said. “I have nothing but respect for Jim Rome.”
McAfee gave props to Rome, 57, saying he’s been doing sports talk probably longer than anyone. He’s one of the most widely distributed hosts in the country. Pat said he won’t tolerate anyone talking smack about the Smack-Off King.
“No disrespect will be said on this show of Jim Rome, ever,” he said. “Love that man.”