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Cory Provus: Bob Uecker is a Perfectionist

“We all love the lines, but he’s like, ‘Nope, I could have done that better.'”

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Bob Uecker
Courtesy: Morry Gash, The Associated Press

When baseball fans think about movies that are closely associated with the sport, Major League is sure to come up in most conversations. The sports comedy, which was released in 1989, centers around how Rachel Phelps, a former Las Vegas showgirl, inherited the struggling Cleveland Indians baseball team from her husband. Longtime Milwaukee Brewers radio play-by-play announcer Bob Uecker stars in the film as Harry Doyle, who holds the same role on the air for Cleveland. One of the lines he is most synonymous with is, ‘Just a bit outside!,’ which he articulated when describing a pitch from reliever Ricky “Wild Thing” Vaughn.

Uecker has seen clips of the movie in the past when it is being played in the Milwaukee Brewers clubhouse; however, he has never watched the film in its entirety from start to finish. Current Minnesota Twins television play-by-play announcer Cory Provus revealed this fact while appearing on The Power Trip Friday morning on KFAN much to the surprise of the other personalities within the studio. Provus worked with Uecker before being hired to work on the radio for Twins games starting in the 2012 season.

“He’s a perfectionist,” Provus said of Bob Uecker. “We all love the lines, but he’s like, ‘Nope, I could have done that better. I could have inflected that one better in a different way; in a more comedic way [with] the timing.’”

Provus then told a story of Uecker receiving a visit in the booth from Washington Nationals first baseman Adam Dunn in the middle of a game. Dunn was not penciled in the lineup for the day game following a contest from the night before, and he was escorted to the booth in his full uniform and sneakers. He decided to hang out in the radio booth instead unbeknownst to manager Jim Riggleman, who could have presumably used Dunn as a pinch-hitter at a moment’s notice.

“He thought about fining Adam Dunn after the game was over and that went away,” Provus said, “but that stuff only happens because it’s Bob Uecker.”

The conversation then turned towards the fact that some actors do not like to watch their own movies. It resulted in Provus asking co-host Chris Hawkey whether or not he listens back to performances from his band or previous episodes of The Power Trip after the fact. Hawkey’s reply exhibited a prudential mindset that he keeps regarding his various endeavors, focusing on the tasks he needs to execute on a daily basis.

“Very, very infrequently,” Hawkey replied. “Well first of all, it’s mostly still stuck in your mind, and the radio show, you’re always thinking about what’s next so you never go back and listen to it again. It’s always, ‘What am I doing next?’”

Veteran sportscaster Marney Gellner was in studio for the program as well and affirmed that most people would agree that it is difficult to watch yourself on screen. There are times when she watches a video of their phone and is incredulous towards the way she sounds and looks. While there are varied drawbacks towards the practice, there is an understanding that it can be beneficial for people who go in front of the camera. Gellner is venerated by Minnesota sports fans for her work covering the Twins, Lynx and Timberwolves over the years, but she is cognizant of difficulties in recapitulating and evaluating previous footage.

“As someone who works in television, it is very helpful to watch back stuff because you see a lot,” Gellner said. “….I rarely do it because it is excruciating for me.”

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KFC on WFAN: What Makes Barstool Sports Successful is the “Reality TV Aspect”

“Anybody that has success in entertainment and sports…I think there is going to be that desire to see behind the curtain and we just kind of opened the curtain willingly.”

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Kevin Clancy, aka KFC from Barstool Sports
Courtesy: Barstool Sports

Kevin Clancy, better known as ‘KFC’ from Barstool Sports, filled in for Boomer Esiason on WFAN this morning with Gregg Giannatti. The two hosts discussed the feuding going on between members of the 1990’s Chicago Bulls as some players, most notably Scottie Pippen, are disputing some of what was said in The Last Dance back in 2020.

They compared the situation to some of what they face at their offices, noting they spend a lot of time with their co-workers, who aren’t members of their family or in most cases their best friends and drama can sometimes ensue. “Barstool has taken that office drama to a level that no one else has achieved,” Giannotti said to KFC. “When we do stuff like that here [at WFAN], it’s very rarely serious. The drama that you guys have, it’s real and it’s out there and that’s got to be a really difficult thing to deal with if you’re not prepared for it.”

“We usually refer to it as “being in the mud,” Clancy responded. “And there’s only certain people that can really live in the mud…It’s part of what made Barstool successful, is that reality TV aspect of it in that it is kind of like a team, and there is internal drama like clubhouse drama, locker room drama and the way we usually handle that is let’s do it out there and on the air.”

KFC talked about being a fan of WFAN and seeing it from the outside looking in. He said as a listener you could sense who was not a fan of certain people. He used the example of the feuds which would take place between Mike Francesa and Craig Carton and then the subsequent feuds Giannotti found himself in with “The Pope” when he took over for Carton.

“Anybody that has success in entertainment and sports…I think there is going to be that desire to see behind the curtain and we just kind of opened the curtain willingly,” KFC said about Barstool Sports. “We will probably fight each other more than anything, but then when there’s an outside problem, we close ranks and we are like, let’s handle business.”

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Gow Media Parts Ways With Sports Map Radio Program Director Craig Larson

“With Larson exiting, Gow Media will make another change, tapping into its partnership with VSiN to satisfy its Sports Map Radio affiliate stations.”

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It’s been a tough week in Houston for Gow Media. First, the company made cuts to ESPN 97.5, parting ways with the midday team of Joshua Beard, Michael Connor and Andrew Carlson. Then yesterday, the company informed longtime network program director Craig Larson that he too was unfortunately a budget cut casualty.

Larson had been with Gow Media since the company acquired the Sporting News Radio network in 2010. He started with Sporting News Radio as a producer in Illinois, moving next to Los Angeles to take on programming duties for the network before relocating to Houston to lead the outlet following David Gow’s acquisition of the brand.

During the fourteen years that Larson managed the network, it’s gone through a few changes. Gow elected to change the identity from Sporting News Radio to Yahoo Sports Radio in 2011. That was followed by rebrands to SB Nation Radio and its current name, Sports Map Radio.

With Larson exiting, Gow Media will tap into its partnership with VSiN to satisfy its Sports Map Radio affiliate stations. The two groups have already been working together. This just gives the sports betting network an even bigger push. It also helps Gow stand out better in a crowded national sports radio marketplace.

As for Larson, this is his first trip to free agency in nearly a quarter century. When reached by BSM, he acknowledged that his time with the company had come to an end. He added, ‘It was an amazing 14 years in Houston. I’m proud of the work we put in, and there’s no better person in the world to work for than David Gow.’

Those interested in chatting with Larson about future possibilities can reach him at [email protected].

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Eli Gold Out as Voice of Alabama Football; Ends 35-Year Run

“I will not be returning. The university chose to not bring me back. I have not retired!”

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Eli Gold
Courtesy: Alabama Athletics

The Tuscaloosa News has reported longtime University of Alabama radio play-by-play voice Eli Gold will not be returning next season. Gold, who has been in the position for 35 years, told Birmingham FOX 6 Reporter Jonathan Hardison, “I will not be returning. The university chose to not bring me back. I have not retired!”

The report says Chris Stewart, who has been calling Alabama basketball for the Crimson Tide Sports Network, will take over the football broadcasts.

“Eli has been an invaluable member of our broadcast team,” Jim Carabin, Vice President and General Manager of the Crimson Tide Sports Network said in a statement. “We are grateful for his years of service and wish him all the best in this next chapter. CTSN is fortunate to have someone as part of our existing broadcast team in Chris to step up and seamlessly transition into this role.”

Gold missed the 2022 season for health reasons, otherwise he has been calling Crimson Tide games each season since 1988. Gold, 70, had been diagnosed with cancer just over one year ago but called home games in 2023. Stewart filled in for Gold both in 2022 and 2023.

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