By SHARON GINN
© St. Petersburg Times
published December 17, 2001
Observations from the Bucs broadcast:
Hearing Pat Summerall mispronounce names, say "I don't know" or "I'm not sure" is getting old. Fox's No. 1 play-by-play announcer simply isn't sharp anymore. His worst slip Sunday: Somehow he managed to confuse Warrick Dunn with Mike Alstott in the first quarter. The play after Alstott ran for a first down, Summerall said "he gets the carry again," when the rusher clearly was Dunn. He mixed them up again later in the game.
So-called "inside information" from analysts isn't always useful, but when John Madden said Brad Johnson told him "the one (kind of) weather he hates to play in is rain," it ended up explaining a lot. Especially considering Johnson threw an interception on the next play.
Fox had excellent camera work, getting a number of less-than-obvious shots. One was a close-up of the Bears' John Davis knocking the ball out of Karl Williams' hands, as Williams ran by while Davis was standing on the sideline. Williams was out of bounds, but the picture summed up the Bucs' afternoon.
Hearing Madden steal a line from NASCAR analyst Darrell Waltrip, crooning "you picked a fine time to leave me, loose wheel" during a promo for Fox's NASCAR coverage, only served to remind that Madden no longer is the freshest, most entertaining analyst at the network. Waltrip is.
Again we ask, what exactly is sideline reporter Ron Pitts' job? Warren Sapp was on the sideline during a Chicago touchdown drive, and Madden and Summerall were forced to wonder aloud whether he was injured. The pair confirmed to viewers later that Sapp had an injured shoulder, but Pitts should have been on the air with more details.
The last word: "The Bears will be in the playoffs if they hang on," Summerall said with Chicago up 27-3 in the fourth quarter. Maybe Summerall saw something in the Bucs the rest of us didn't ... ?
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