Enberg on Bostock: He was such a sweet kid


In addition to the beautiful story Jill Painter did for today’s Daily News (linked here) on the 30th anniversary of Lyman Bostock’s murder, and the legacy that he has left at Cal State Northridge with an alumni game in his honor as well as a scholarship fund that continues to help student-athletes, we tracked down Dick Enberg, the CBS sportscaster and former San Fernando Valley State professor/assistant baseball coach for his remembrances today.

Enberg helped with initial contributions to the Lyman Bostock Memorial Fund that was established soon after his passing because of the kinship felt with Bostock, a San Fernando Valley State star player before he was drafted by Minnesota and came to the Angels as a free agent for his one and only season, 1978.

“I was so proud as an announcer to say that Bostock played his ball with the Matadors,” said Enberg, the Angels’ broadcaster from 1969 to ’81. “They weren’t giving out scholarships for a long time, and it really started as a grass-roots program, so any time anyone made it to the big leagues from Northridge, it made us all feel a special allegiance.”

It made Enberg recall another former San Fernando Valley State player, pitcher Paul Edmondson, (Wikipedia bio linked here), who was the first Matador to make it to the big-leagues with the Chicago White Sox in 1967. Edmondson also met a tragic fate, having died in a car accident in the off season on his way to spring training in 1970.

He was 27 — the same age as Bostock when he was murdered.

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Merkle’s Boner: Only 100 years young


There was no Viagra or Cialis ads on the New York Giants’ radio broadcasts in 1908. Heck, there were no radio broadcasts.
But we rememeber Fred Merkle and his, ahem, well-chronicled boner — which actually was his old-school twist on the walk-of,f game-winning hit before it became fashionable.
Keith Olbermann , back in his days as a sportscaster at KTLA-Channel 5, loved to retell the story year after year, with a cardboard cutout of Merkle, about how on Sept. 23, 1908, during one of baseball’s great pennant races, Merkle changed his team’s fortunes by doing something kinda stupid.
Olbermann, the current MSNBC “Countdown” host, NBC “Sunday Night Football” studio co-anchor and former ESPN “SportsCenter” legend, is featured in Sports Illustrated this week to, again, get a snicker out of everyone when he re-errects the legend of Merkel’s Boner.

For those who need to hear the story again (a link here to the Wikipedia version):

It’s the bottom of the ninth. The Giants need a victory over the Chicago Cubs at the Polo Grounds. Scored tied 1-1. Two outs. Merkle, a Giants’ 19-year-old rookie, hits a long single to right field, sending his teammate, Moose McCormick, to third. Next, Al Bridwell singles up the middle, giving the Giants the apparent walk-off victory (the tern wasn’t used then, but it could have been). Fans storm the field in celebration. And Merkle, who ran toward second on the hit, suddenly takes a right turn and joins the exodus.
Sorry, but that violated Rule 59: A run could not count if another runner was forced as the third out of the inning. Merkel was forced out at second by Cubs second baseman Johnny Evers, who noticed the gaffe, and the game was declared a tie.
The Cubs later won the make-up game, 4-2, won the National League, and then won the World Series — the last one in franchise history. Merkel ended up playing for the Cubs, as well as the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Yankees, and played in six World Series — all of them on the losing side.
And the Cubs, for whatever reason, benefitted from a goat that wasn’t related to the Billy Goat Tavern.

Writes Olbermann in SI:

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College football TV Week 5 gets early Thursday cowbells


A month into this thing already, and No. 1 USC has played but twice.
No wonder they’re (practically) untouched in the rankings. This is all starting to sound like the Ohio State theory: Play less, win out, let everyone else knock each other around.
But you can only do that for so long.
The TV gods will mess with the Trojans’ this week by treating them like a desperate Big East wannabe. Make ‘em play Thursday. On ESPN. That’ll teach ‘em.

Hitch up the covered wagon today. There may be no midweek planes going to Corvallis, Ore., without a layover at Mt. Shasta.

(Some day, we’ll get used to watching college football on Thursdays … Thanksgiving Day, OK. A Christmas Day every six years, fine. But why is this such a regular thing? Because here, it gives Pete Carroll another free Friday to recruit?)

What games you’ll be able to watch this week — and weekend — with a regular TV set (and a slightly more expensive distribution network):


Thursday, 6 p.m., ESPN: USC at Oregon State (with Chris Fowler, Craig James, Jesse Palmer and Erin Andrews) There are only so many post-game hangouts that Andrews can find in Corvallis, and half of them end with “Watering Hole.” Start camping out now with your cellphones cocked. There can’t be any flights out of there Thursday night.

Saturday, 12:30 p.m., KABC/Channel 7: Fresno State at UCLA (with Terry Gannon and David Norrie) The former UCLA quarterback, Norrie, is already listed No. 3 on Neuheisel’s depth chart for this contest.


==5 p.m., CBS College Sports: SMU at Tulane (with Carter Blackburn and Aaron Taylor)
==5 p.m., ESPNU: Mississippi Valley State at Alabama State (with Charlie Neal and Jay Walker)


==5 p.m., ESPN2: Connecticut at Louisville (with Bob Wischusen, Brock Huard and Rob Stone)


==7 to 9 a.m., ESPN “College GameDay” from Athens, Ga., site of the Alabama-Georgia contest (later on ESPN, not CBS). It means Kirk Herbstreit has to leave afterward and take the Disney jet north to State College, Pa.

==9 a.m., ESPN: Michigan State at Indiana (with Pam Ward and Ray Bentley)
==9 a.m., ESPN2: North Carolina at Miami (with Dave Pasch and Andre Ware)
==9 a.m., ESPN Classic: Northwestern at Iowa (with Dave Lamont and Shaun King)
==9 a.m., ESPNU: Virginia at Duke (with Dave Armstrong and Larry Coker)
==9 a.m., Big Ten Network: Minnesota at Ohio State (with Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis, Glen Mason and Charissa Thompson)
==9:30 a.m., Versus: Army at Texas A&M (with Ron Thulin, Kelly Stouffer and Lewis Johnson)

==12:30 p.m., KCBS Channel 2: Tennessee at Auburn (with Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson) So if CBS is supposed to be the network of the SEC, how is it that ESPN is getting the best matchups each week so far?
==12:30 p.m., KNBC Channel 4: Purdue at Notre Dame (with Tom Hammond and Pat Haden, plus Alex Flanagan assisting Charlie Weis to the sidelines)
==12:30 p.m., ESPN: Wisconsin at Michigan (with Brad Nessler, Bob Griese, Paul Maguire and Stacey Dales) So if the Big Ten Network is supposed to be the network of the Big Ten, how is it that ESPN is getting the best matchups each week so far?
==12:30 p.m., ESPN PPV: Colorado at Florida State (with Joe Tessitore, Rod Gilmore and Todd Harris)
==12:30 p.m., ESPN PPV: Arkansas at Texas (with Ron Franklin, Ed Cunningham and Jack Arute)
==12:30 p.m., CBS College Sports: Houston at East Carolina (with Tom Hart and Trev Alberts)
==12:30 p.m., Versus: Florida A&M vs. Tennessee State in Atlanta
==12:45 p.m., ESPNU: Navy at Wake Forest (with Doug Bell and Charles Arbuckle)

==2 p.m., FSN Prime Ticket: Morehouse vs. Prairie View A&M from the Coliseum (Angel City Classic) (with Michael Eaves and Petros Papadakis). Repeats at 11 p.m.

==4 p.m., FSN West: Texas Christian at Oklahoma (with Joel Meyers, Dave Lapham, Gary Reasons and Jim Knox)
==4 p.m., ESPN2: Mississippi State at LSU (with Mark Jones and Bob Davie)
==4:30 p.m., ESPNU: South Florida at N.C. State (with Clay Matvick, David Diaz-Infante and Melissa Knowles)
==4:45 p.m., ESPN: Alabama at Georgia (with Mike Patrick, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe)
==5 p.m., KABC Channel 7: Illinois at Penn State (with Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit and Lisa Salters) See comment above attached to Wisconsin-Michigan game.
==5 p.m. ESPN PPV: Virginia Tech at Nebraska (with Sean McDonough, Chris Spielman and Erin Andrews)
==5 p.m., CBS College Sports: Central Florida at UTEP (with Carter Blackburn, Aaron Taylor and Rocket Ismail)

==7 p.m., MTN: Nevada at UNLV (with James Bates and Todd Christensen)
==7:30 p.m., FSN West: Stanford at Washington (with Kevin Calabro, Mack Strong and Nicole Zaloumis)


==5 p.m., ESPN2: Florida Atlantic at Middle Tennessee (with Todd Harris and Ray Bentley)
==5 p.m., ESPN: Louisiana Tech at Boise State (with Joe Tessitore and Rod Gilmore)

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Emmys, Yankees no match for Simpson’s Cowboys


NBC proclaims this AM:

Dallas’ 27-16 victory over Green Bay on “Sunday Night Football,” drew 22.2 million viewers and stands as the second most watched Sunday Night game in NBC’s two-plus year history of the program, trailing only the much-hyped “Manning Bowl” on the first Sunday of the 2006 season (22.6 million), according to data provided by Nielsen Media Research.

Sunday night’s game ended up with a 13.3 rating and 21 share. When the metered markets came in with overnights, it was a 14.4/22 number. The game did a 38.6/56 in Dallas and a 41.8/57 in Milwaukee.

“Sunday Night Football” was the highest-rated show Sunday — defeating the Primetime Emmy Awards broadcast on ABC by 80 percent in viewers (22.2 million to 12.3 million) and 62 percent among households (13.3/21 vs. 8.2/13). We’re not sure how many New Yorkers helped boost ESPN’s coverage at the same time of the Yankees’ final home game, but assume it’s less than 12.3 million.

The most-watched games in “SNF” history:
1. Indianapolis-N.Y. Giants (09.07.06): 22.6 mil.
2. Dallas-Green Bay (09.21.08): 22.2 mil.
3. Indianapolis-New England (11.05.06): 21.9 mil.
4. Philadelphia-New England (11.25.07): 21.8 mil.
5. New Orleans-Dallas (12.10.06): 19.9 mil.


Now, for the L.A. angle:

The Emmys did a 13.7 rating and 23 share in Los Angeles for KABC Channel 7 — better than the 12.7/23 for the Cowboys-Packers on KNBC Channel 4.
Meaning, in these parts, an uneven, almost embarassing Josh Groban theme-show song montage drew more eyeballs and had an deeper intrisic meaning that a Tony Romo touchdown drive. Somehow, that makes complete sense.

== ESPN’s Monday Night Football – the San Diego Chargers’ 48-29 victory over the visiting New York Jets – did an 8.9 rating, representing an average of 8,642,000 homes (11,881,000 P2+). For the third straight Monday, ESPN won the night in the key male demos among all networks, broadcast or cable, and the game drove significant traffic to ESPN.com’s NFL content.

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NFL TV talk, Week 4: Black Hole, where art thou?


No worries concerns doubts about whether the Chargers or Raiders will be wedged into your L.A. TV sets this weekend.
The schedule-maker has made them play each other — the first of two, of couse, in the AFC West draw. The second meeting is on Thursday, Dec. 4, in San Diego, on the NFL Network, meaning, for many of y’all, this is the only time you’ll see Oakland face San Diego, and the fact it’s in Oakland could add a little more, er, venim, especially with Lane Kiffin’s job still supposedly hanging in the balance.
And Al Davis hanging upside down in his cave.

The rest of the NFL’s upcoming weekend serving:


==10 a.m., KTTV Channel 11: Green Bay at Tampa Bay (with Kenny Albert, Darryl Johnston and Tony Siragusa). Fox happily skips over Atlanta at Carolina, San Francisco at New Orleans, Arizona at N.Y. Jets and Minnesota at Tennessee. CBS has these games locked into this window: Cleveland at Cincinnati, Denver at Kansas City and Houston at Jacksonville.


==1 p.m., KCBS Channel 2: San Diego at Oakland (with Jim Nantz and Phil Simms). CBS passes on Buffalo at St. Louis.

==1:15 p.m., KTTV Channel 11: Washington at Dallas (with Joe Buck and Troy Aikman) It’s the only Fox game in this window, and NBC can’t have it.

==5:15 p.m., KNBC Channel 4: Philadelphia at Chicago (with Al Michaels, John Madden and Andrea Kremer)


==5:30 p.m., ESPN: Baltimore at Pittsburgh (with Mike Tirico, Tony Kornheiser and Ron Jaworski)

Bye week: Detroit, Indianapolis, Miami, New England, N.Y Giants, Seattle, and again, Tom Brady.

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McDonnell’s reaction to getting canned: What’s new?


Joe McDonnell, a man (again) without a show, had this quip to give after it came out today that KLAC-AM (570) was not renewing his contract, thus ending his “Experience” (with Joe Grande and Tim Cates), replacing it next week with Tony Bruno (links here to the posts below at 3:13 p.m. and 5:50 p.m.):

“I really enjoyed my three years at Clear Channel, but they had a chance to save some money, so who can blame them for that?” said the San Fernando Valley native. “I wished it could have worked out that we stayed on the air, but Clear Channel is now in my rear view. I’m looking forward to my next opportunity and challenge. I truly love the business, and like I tell the students I speak to: ‘If you’re not crazy going into radio, you will be by the time you’re done.’
“I’ve got a ways to go — I’m only half crazy.”

Now, to the scoreboard (kept on Joe’s site) for the list of stations that the man we called the best sports-talk show host in L.A. six times and the sports talk show host of the decade for the 1990s has worked for:

=KGIL (1975-82)
=KFI (’88-’91)
=XTRA 690 (1991)
=KMPC (’91-’94)
=KMAX-FM (’95-’96)
=KWNK (’96)
=KABC (’97)
=XTRA 1150 (’97-’98)
=KABC (’98-99)
=KFWB (’99-’00)
=KABC (’99-’00)
=KSPN (’00-05)
=KTLK (’06-’08)
=KLAC (’06-’08)

==SportsbyBrooks has this to add (linked here)

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The Return of Bruno


Bruce Willis didn’t make much of that title when the then-”Moonlighting” TV star tried to cut an album more than 20 years ago (linked here) in his pre-”Die Hard” days.

Tony Bruno, a die-hard radio guy on just about every syndicated network one could listen to over the last few decades, should not want that kind of luck with him as he makes a re-entry into the moonlit L.A. galaxy with a new sports-talk show on KLAC-AM (570) starting Monday, Sept. 29.

At the end of a revealing interview this summer with Deadpin.com (linked here), Bruno, who had been making some pretty good seven-figure salaries, said he expected to bounce back after he found himself jobless when his contract with The Sporting News Radio ran out. It only took until September before he was able, with the help of The Content Factor, work out a co-op deal with the management at KLAC to give him the 7-to-10 p.m. weeknight spot for the opportunity to turn it into a syndicated venture.

We’re guessing it’ll pay more than $200,000 a year.

“Fortunately, my patience paid off,” Bruno said Monday afternoon. “This business has been tough. I finally got an opportunity through The Content Factory, after filling in for Dan Patrick (for a couple of days in the summer) to get some exposure again and the response was good.”

When Bruno left the air in January as a morning-drive sports-talk host, Patrick, upon leaving ESPN, was able to capture many of those stations as he started to syndicate himself through Premiere Radio as an opening act for Jim Rome’s show.

Bruno, realizing he didn’t have much syndicated power to flex in the mornings any more with the current landscape, turned to a shift that’s a little out of the boundary of what he’s been used to, but that’s part of the challenge.

“I’m not going to try to re-invent myself, but the fact is, this is an open area that others in the past have found success in with a high level and a good audience,” said Bruno. “We’ll do live remotes, maybe more stuff from Vegas when something’s happening. I don’t want to be the guy who screams, ‘It’s a final!’ and then go do an interview with another drone selling a book. People don’t normally listen to this time slot, but I want to give them a reason. I know I already have JT The Brick opposite of this (doing a syndicated show for Fox Radio out of Sherman Oaks), but I think I already have a heads up on the competition.”

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KLAC replaces “Joe McDonnell Experience” with Tony Bruno


Long-time L.A. radio sports icon Joe McDonnell is again without a broadcast home, as KLAC-AM (570) program director Don Martin confirmed this afternoon that a new show hosted by Tony Bruno will take the 7-to-10 p.m. weeknight spot beginning Monday, Sept. 29.

McDonnell (a link to his website here), who has had a 20-year run in the L.A. market as a sports-talk host, had been at KLAC since January, 2006, also working for sister station KTLK-AM (1150). His weeknight spot this week will be replaced with replays of the Petros Papadakis and Matt “Money” Smith show (which airs from 4-to-7 p.m.)

Martin explained that The Content Factory, which launched Dan Patrick’s syndicated radio career after he left ESPN (and is now on KLAC from 6 to 9 a.m.), approached him about co-owning a Bruno show called “Into the Night” that eminated from the station’s Burbank studios but will eventually be available to other stations, such as how the Tom Leykis show operates with out of the L.A. studios of 97.1-FM.

Bruno (his website linked here), who has been living in Venice for the last eight years, was last heard in the L.A. market nearly two years ago as the morning drive host at the former 1540-AM The Ticket, which was then owned by The Sporting News radio network. His contract with that network ended in April this year.

Martin said the timing of Bruno’s availability, the fact that it is formatted for a night-time show, and McDonnell’s contract coming up for renewal all converged for this decision.
“We’ve come to the end and it’s time to move forward,” said Martin.

Martin said that McDonnell broadcast partner Joe Grande will continue hosting a weekend sports-talk show and Tim Cates will produce Bruno’s show and contribute to it as well.

Over the last few months, Bruno had been approached by KSPN-AM (710) as a possible afternoon drive host, but the station eventually decided not to do it. Bruno also had a deal apparently set with the Angels’ flagship station, KLAA-AM (830), but those talks broke down in April.

A Q-and-A with Bruno coming shortly …

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‘He’s a lawyer, John … the best there is’


That’s what Jack Lord (Steve McGarrett) tells the jailbird as Al Michaels (David Bronstein) sits down in the cell and tries to get him off the hook in a murder case.
Thanks to AwfulAnnouncing.com (linked here) to finding our item on Michaels’ “Hawaii Five-O” appearance in 1970, and then tracking down the 2 minute, 39-second video clip.
You kind of wish John Madden was there afterward to critique it on the Telestrator.

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The Alou Brothers had the idea first


So apparently them bad-a** Jonas Brothers were over at a local Big 5 Sporting Good store stocking up on baseball stuff because they had rented out Dodger Stadium the other night (at more than $30,000) so they could have a pick-up baseball game.

Kids have too much loose pocket change these days?

E! News had the “exclusive” news (linked here) late last week and shared with the nation that the boy band was celebrating the youngest (Nick) brother’s 16th birthday from 10 p.m. to about 12:30 a.m. on Thursday night.

When syndicated radio show host Dan Patrick reviewed the news of the game on today’s show (6-to-9 a.m., KLAC-AM 570), he added: “Could you check — did Darren Dreifort or Chan Ho Park pick up the win?”

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