People & Personalities: Brando Discusses Choosing Fox Sports Over SEC Net
Broadcaster Tim Brando said he had his "sights set" on joining Fox Sports "from the very beginning." Brando, appearing on the FOXSPORTS.com podcast "The Audible," added, "I did largely because of the volume of properties that they have in football and basketball" and the net's "willingness to grow those" properties. Brando thought because of his longtime association with CBS' college sports and the SEC it was a "fait accompli that I was going to go to the SEC Network, that I would do football and basketball for them and that's that." The SEC Network "did come forward very late in the process" and told him "we really do want to make a commitment to you in basketball." But Brando said there were "contingencies" in the contract "that I didn’t particularly like." Brando: "Meanwhile, Fox did show interest … and they came forward with a full package of really, really good college football and college basketball for me. And in my business, the tail that wags the dog is football so for me there was really no decision to make other than coming to Fox Sports" ("The Audible," FOXSPORTS.com, 6/30).
GOODBYE IS NEVER EASY: In Daytona Beach, Godwin Kelly noted while Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Coke Zero 400 will be "TNT's last appearance" at Daytona Int'l Speedway, broadcaster Kyle Petty "will return, wearing either his Fox Sports or NBC hat for years to come." Petty said, "Turner Broadcasting has been part of the sport for 30-plus years, so that's sad, to lose (TNT) after all that time, but there are a lot of great things coming." While Petty "won't be part of the NBC racing team, he does have a contract with the broadcast giant, in addition to working with Fox Sports 1 on a regular basis." Petty: "There will be a lot of great things coming with NBC and with Fox. But this being our last run with TNT, our last year at Daytona, that part is kind of sad" (Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL, 7/1).
THE BEES KNEES: In Atlanta, Ken Sugiura noted former Georgia Tech football player Roddy Jones last week was named radio color analyst for the team and will join Brandon Gaudin this fall. Jones is "insightful, funny and a gifted communicator." One "particular strength Jones will bring to the role is his intimate knowledge of coach Paul Johnson's offense, having started a school-record 52 games" from '08-11 (AJC.com, 6/30).
PLAY BALL: NESN on Friday announced that Gary Striewski has been named its primary Red Sox sideline reporter. Striewski’s game-day duties will include interviewing players and coaches, delivering in-game reports, plus doing live hits and features for NESN’s pre- and postgame shows, NESN Live and NESN Sports Today. Striewski originally joined NESN in July of ’13 and has been working as a Red Sox sideline reporter including spring training and in-season (NESN).
WELCOME HOME: In Baltimore, Eduardo Encina noted Orioles radio play-by-play announcer Fred Manfra’s "familiar voice returned to the airwaves Tuesday for the first time since the first week of the season." Manfra expected to "only miss a month after undergoing a right hip replacement procedure in early April." But he "needed a second surgery that kept him out for a total of 80 games" (BALTIMORESUN.com, 7/1).