Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Mostly Sports Stuff

Our item this afternoon is full of mostly sports-related stuff, and starts with something that could turn into something bigger...

WITHER CHUCK?: When Clear Channel talk WTAM/1100 Cleveland afternoon drive host Mike Trivisonno took a few days off after the tragic death of his long-time wife Linda, regular Triv sub Chuck Galeti dropped in to cover for the WTAM host.

Galeti has been the weekend sports anchor for a certain Cleveland market CBS affiliate, known legally to the FCC as WOIO(TV) Shaker Heights. He was once weekday sports anchor in the basement of Reserve Square, but flipped places with the station's Tony Zarella.

Is Galeti still working at the TV station in question?

We ask because a reader points out that Galeti is missing from the station's on-air talent page. (Don't try to block us from linking it, Reserve Square folks...we have a screen shot!)

Zarella's bio text has now been clumsily extended to the right, to cover what we presume is the place where Galeti's bio was.

And though the alleged CBS affiliate in this market can't be picked up over air at the OMW World Headquarters, and we do our best not to watch, our reader says Sue Ann Robak, former sports reporter/anchor at Scripps ABC WEWS/5's "NewsChannel 5", has been seen performing the same duties at Reserve Square - presumably (?) in a fill-in mode.

(Robak has also done fill-in work for SportsTime Ohio since leaving Channel 5.)

We only have the above information, and have not confirmed Galeti's departure, or for that matter, Robak's presence/status at the CBS affiliate. Needless to say, we've been dropped off of a lot of Christmas card lists at Reserve Square, and they probably have OMW blocked by their IT people...

SPEAKING OF TRIV: And a hat tip to one of our readers.

We're not the only ones here familiar with radio talk show host Don Geronimo, who was nationally syndicated for many years (Westwood One) before leaving the "Don & Mike Show" after his wife's death in a car crash.

In an earlier item, we suggested that the aforementioned Mike Trivisonno should seek out Geronimo for advice - since he's probably the only other human being on earth who has pondered questions about his future as a radio talk host after losing his loving wife.

One of our readers forwarded a link to that item, via Twitter, to Geronimo on his Twitter account. And the response:

I will reach out to him! Thx Thx!RT@jet1978 in addition 2u I listen 2 Triv. u can offer advice since u have been there http://bit.ly/1ljy0

Having absolutely nothing to do with this blog, or our reporting on this situation, we really hope Don Geronimo and Mike Trivisonno have talked about this. And any support someone can get when losing a beloved spouse, yet still trying to go on with his life and his career, is a Good Thing.

In our sampling of Triv's show since he came back, we've heard him once or twice push back the early talk about "if I stay on the radio", saying more than once that he "isn't going anywhere", radio-wise.

No matter if he got advice from his fellow host - now doing a local midday show on Ocean City/Salisbury MD market talker WGMD/92.7 - "What I Do With My Future After This" is still a question he has to answer on his own, one way or the other. And we continue to wish Triv well in that regard...

TIME WARNER NEWS: Two items courtesy of the folks at Time Warner Cable Northeast Ohio...and for now, at least, we still have no word on when expanded HDTV lineups/SDV will appear in the TWC NEO area formerly served by Comcast.

Small comfort to these folks is the addition of three new standard definition channels around the TWC NEO footprint. From a release:

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RFD-TV, channel 229 (Choice Tier), is the nation's first 24-hour television network dedicated to serving the needs and interests of rural America and agriculture. Programming themes include “Horses on RFD,” “Rural Youth,” “Rural/Agricultural News,” “Video Livestock Auctions,” “Traditional & Ethnic Music,” and “Rural Lifestyles.”

Crime & Investigation, channel 222 (Choice Tier), offers viewers in-depth criminal investigations, behind the scenes police work on some of the world's most fascinating cases and a close-up look when new technology solves 'cold cases'. Crime & Investigation examines stories behind the headlines, biographies of infamous murderers, serial killers and outlaws and probes unexplained mysteries.

Military History Channel, channel 139 (Choice Tier), is a spin off of the popular History Channel. Military History features programming that looks back at some great battles of yesteryear as well as programs that profile key individuals such as generals, soldiers and spies. Documentaries and series give the viewer an insight into how battles were fought and the lives of those who fought them.

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"Choice Tier" means the channels are available on a tier costing an extra $5 a month.

You'll notice that the description for RFD-TV does not include the channel's simulcast of the Don Imus radio program, which landed on the rural-themed network after Imus (a former Cleveland radio name) landed again on Citadel's WABC/770 New York with a Citadel Media (ex-ABC Radio Network) syndication deal.

We won't go looking for the links here, but just about every media outlet that cares about the topic reports that Imus' TV simulcast is about to move to the Fox Business Network, which is already in the standard digital lineup for Time Warner Northeast Ohio subscribers....

AND THE OTHER TWC ITEM: Yes, it's mid-August, and just the other day...your Primary Editorial Voice(tm) realized that Northeast Ohio's high school football season was probably close.

From another Time Warner Cable Northeast Ohio release:

As the month of August comes to a close, sports fans across Northeast Ohio are gearing up for one thing: high school football. This year, Time Warner Cable will provide viewers even more coverage with the debut of “Varsity Sports Preview” on the Northeast Ohio Network (NEON), channel 23.

“Varsity Sports Preview,” a 30-minute show comprised of news, analysis and interviews covering the upcoming weekend’s matchups, will air Thursdays at 7 p.m. on NEON. The show, which debuts August 27, will be hosted by Dave Wilson, Patrick Pierson and Eddie Dwyer. Wilson and Pierson are also commentators for high school football games on NEON. Dwyer is the high school sports reporter for the News-Herald.

NEON has also unveiled its high school football broadcast schedule:

The 2009 season will kick-off the last weekend in August with Euclid @ Strongsville and Green @ Lake. Games on NEON are televised on a tape-delayed basis throughout the weekend, with the first airing Friday at 11 p.m. Games replay Saturday at 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

All games will also be available on NEON On Demand, channel 501. NEON On Demand, the home of local on demand, is free to Time Warner Cable’s digital cable customers and programming can be watched anytime.

The full list of games - subject to change later - is on the NEON website.

A quick look at the schedule as it stands shows the coverage favoring both Cleveland and Canton, with only two games involving teams in the Akron area - the contest involving Green the first week, and a game between Akron area parochial schools Walsh Jesuit and Archbishop Hoban on week three.

It looks like the crews contracted by TWC directly are staying in the Cleveland area for the most part, and the Canton area games are presumably joint ventures with Canton-based WIVM-LP/52. The low-power outlet is owned by long-time area video production house Image Video, which has been covering high school football games very nearly since the days of black and white TV...

AND ONE MORE QUICK SPORTS SHORT: Brett Favre seems inexplicably linked with Cleveland, though the local NFL franchise has never expressed any interest in acquiring the on-again/off-again/on-again (etc.) quarterback.

Unless you're under a rock, you know by now that Favre is apparently "back on again", as ESPN has breathlessly reported that the former Green Bay Packers legend is getting ready to suit up for the Minnesota Vikings. (And we mean breathlessly - earlier this afternoon, they were nearly drooling over live helicopter video of Favre strolling around the Vikings' practice facility. That was too much for us, so we found something else to watch.)

But what about Cleveland?

When Favre first "unretired" after tearfully saying goodbye to Cheeseheads all over Wisconsin, he landed with the New York Jets.

The Jets were in Cleveland to play the Browns in a preseason game the day Favre's return was announced, and that announcement came from a conference room inside the bowels of Cleveland Browns Stadium... prompting extra coverage from local sports reporters, anchors and talk show hosts even though the move didn't affect the Browns one bit.

(Oh, of course, Browns head coach Eric Mangini was the Jets coach at the time, though no one expected he'd land in Cleveland the following season.)

Here we go again.

Though Favre's latest return won't be unveiled by the Vikings in Cleveland this time around, Northeast Ohio figures prominently into this sports soap opera once again.

Assuming today's events happen as expected, Favre will take the field as a member of the Vikings for the first time in the regular season on September 13th...as the Vikings play, you guessed it, the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium.

An opening regular season game has enough attention upon it...but this means ESPN and other national outlets will certainly camp out on the shore of Lake Erie for the better part of that week...

2 comments:

74WIXYgrad said...

Perhaps we will have a sellout then, and I don't mean Favre.

And in an unrelated related note, remember with high school football comes high school marching band season and one of your favorite bloggers is gettings his pipes ready as the "voice" of the Rittman Indians Marching Band.

derek said...

(QUOTE)
... since he's probably the only other human being on earth who has pondered questions about his future as a radio talk host after losing his loving wife.(END QUOTE)

Let's not forget Mike Gallagher.