Who’s “our” go-to guy?

February 13, 2008

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Whenever there’s “Breakings News” whether in sports or not, there’s always that calm and familiar face and voice that you hope to see and hear in the time of crisis. For me, on the hard news side, I always turned to the late Peter Jennings, He was smooth, never got rattled and was always professional. Perhaps his greatest work occurred during and following Sept. 11, where he was on air seemingly forever.

On the sport side, whenever there’s breaking news or an important live event that’s taking place, ESPN’s Bob Ley is almost always the man for the job. One of the “originals” from the WWL’s early days, Ley’s professionalism sets him apart from his more hip and catch-phrase happy co-workers.  He asks the tough questions, has the endurance for however long the respective event takes place and has the delivery that reaches all age groups.

So that begs the question, from the minority perspetive, who is the go-to on-air personality for sports? Who’s that anchor, that “we” would feel comfortable in getting our information from in a crucial time.

The first name that comes to mind is Bryant Gumbel.  The former Today Show co-host made a name for himself with his smooth delivery on NBC’s pre-game shows and later on HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, often called the best sports show on television. Gumbel has the cross-over appeal that works in his favor in appealing to a broad audience, which would, given the situation, make him my choice as the go-to guy for the minority sports media.