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#pounditSaturday, October 1, 2022

Articles tagged: FOX

Could Urban Meyer return to FOX as college football analyst?

Urban Meyer with a headset on

Urban Meyer flamed out rather spectacularly as the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars. But he was actually very good as a TV analyst for FOX before heading to the NFL.

Could Meyer make a return to FOX’s airwaves? One reporter thinks so.

Austin Ward covers Ohio State for Lettermen Row and was talking about the Buckeyes on their “Ohio State Football Podcast” show. In Monday’s episode, Ward volunteered that he thinks Meyer will be back at FOX.

“I do think Urban will be back in college football as an analyst sometime soon. I think he’ll be returning to FOX,” Ward said. “I can’t say that it’s done, I just think it’s gonna happen again.”

Ward added that he felt there was a dropoff from Meyer to Bob Stoops, who replaced the former Ohio State coach on the FOX college football show.

We concur.

Meyer was great on air. He speaks with authority and had the credibility and aura of one of the greatest college football coaches.

Some are probably wondering whether Meyer’s credibility has been undermined by a poor tenure with the Jacksonville Jaguars that included multiple controversies. Whether it was the allegations from Josh Lambo or videos with a blonde at a bar, Meyer’s image took a big hit.

While all of those factors probably hurt Meyer’s credibility, he still has a major name and legacy in college football. The more time he spends out of the spotlight — and another four months of the offseason should help — the more the public will forget about some of the nonsense that encompassed him in Jacksonville.

If Meyer doesn’t return to FOX until just before the season, that will probably be enough time for the negative cloud surrounding him to have dissipated. Plus, FOX’s biggest audience are Big Ten fans — and Ohio State ones — and many of them probably are willing to overlook the Jags issues.

H/T Awful Announcing
Photo: Oct 10, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer reacts during the second half against the Tennessee Titans at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

FOX reportedly names Joe Buck replacement for NFL games

Joe Buck smiles

FOX Sports has reportedly made its decision regarding who will replace Joe Buck as its lead voice on NFL broadcasts.

FOX is tapping Kevin Burkhardt for its No. 1 NFL team, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. The two sides are finalizing a new long-term deal that will ensure Burkhardt calls the top NFL game weekly, as well as the Super Bowl when FOX holds the rights.

Burkhardt had always appeared to be the prohibitive favorite for the role from the moment it opened up. He was already FOX’s No. 2 NFL voice, as well as the pregame and postgame host for World Series coverage. Sliding him up to the No. 1 crew is a fairly simple process for all involved.

FOX is still deciding who to pair with Burkhardt as a replacement for Troy Aikman. Former NFL tight end Greg Olsen, who spent last season paired with Burkhardt on broadcasts, is viewed as a favorite.

Photo: Jan 14, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; FOX analyst Joe Buck before the NFC Divisional Playoff football game between the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Price ESPN paid to trade for Joe Buck revealed

Joe Buck smiles

Joe Buck had one year remaining on his deal with FOX when he accepted an offer to join his longtime partner Troy Aikman at ESPN. In addition to paying Buck a massive amount of money, ESPN also had to make a trade with the play-by-play announcer’s former employer.

According to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post, FOX agreed to let Buck out of his contract early as a gesture of good faith. However, the network did work out an agreement with ESPN. FOX and ESPN share the rights to Big Ten football games. They have a drafting system where they pick specific games, and ESPN has agreed to let FOX pick one Big Ten game earlier than usual next season in exchange for Buck.

As college football writer Bryan Fischer notes, the deal likely amounted to ESPN giving FOX the Sept. 3 Notre Dame-Ohio State game.

That is the first game of the season for Notre Dame and Ohio State, and both programs could be ranked in the top five of preseason polls. FOX will gladly take that marquee matchup.

Buck’s deal with ESPN is expected to be in the $60-75 million range. Aikman had an opt-out in his contract with FOX, so no trade was necessary between the two networks. The Hall of Famer is, however, making a lot more than Buck at ESPN.

Photo: Jan 14, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; FOX analyst Joe Buck before the NFC Divisional Playoff football game between the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Report reveals what FOX received in exchange for Joe Buck

Joe Buck smiles

Joe Buck’s move from FOX to ESPN came after days of speculation. FOX had to let Buck out of his contract a year early, but it turns out they did get something from ESPN in return for the broadcaster.

FOX and ESPN share the rights to Big Ten football games, and FOX will receive the right to select an extra Big Ten game early next season, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. While minor, it does represent a tangible return for letting Buck go to ESPN.

Notably, this is just about the exact scenario one expert described as a possibility earlier in the week. There is some similarity to how Al Michaels was allowed to join NBC in exchange for the rights to a cartoon character in 2005.

For FOX, it simply made sense to let Buck go. He was able to reunite with Troy Aikman and get a hefty payday out of it. The fact that FOX was able to land something in return, however minor, is a win for them as well.

Photo: Jan 14, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; FOX analyst Joe Buck before the NFC Divisional Playoff football game between the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Michael Strahan could be candidate to replace Troy Aikman on FOX

Michael Strahan

Could the Michael Strahan media empire soon be expanding?

Following a shuffle of play-by-play and in-game analysts, Strahan very well could stand to benefit. In fact, there is a growing belief that he may end up replacing Troy Aikman, who left FOX for ESPN, and entering the booth this coming season.

Jason Whitlock reports that FOX is now considering a one-two punch of Strahan and Al Michaels in 2022 and beyond. Whitlock is a former FOX Sports TV personality.

Since his retirement following the 2007 season, Strahan has made quite the name for himself in the media world. He currently serves as a co-host for Good Morning America and FOX NFL Sunday, as well as hosting The $100,000 Pyramid. He’s also found his way into the movie production business and owns his own clothing line.

There are several pieces that need to fall into place but at least early on, it looks like Aikman and Joe Buck will be calling games for ESPN, and potentially Strahan and Michaels for FOX.

List of candidates to replace Joe Buck emerges

Al Michaels in a suit and tie

News emerged Friday that Joe Buck is poised to leave FOX to join ESPN, leaving big shoes behind at his old network. Now, reports are suggesting who might replace Buck at FOX.

No. 2 NFL broadcaster Kevin Burkhardt is viewed as the favorite to take over as the lead voice of NFL coverage, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. However, the network is likely to have internal conversations about whether to pursue Al Michaels, who is currently a free agent after departing NBC.

As for FOX’s MLB coverage, which includes the World Series, the network appears to have a wider range of considerations. Marchand says Joe Davis and Adam Amin, both of whom have called MLB games for the network, are viewed as candidates. FOX is also expected to look at external candidates, including ESPN’s Dan Shulman and MLB Network’s Matt Vasgersian.

Buck has been such a huge part of FOX’s sports coverage for over 25 years. He leaves huge shoes to fill, and the network appears to be leaning toward using multiple figures to fulfill his responsibilities. Michaels is certainly the most well-known name, and does not appear to have a clear lean despite interest from Amazon. If FOX wants a big name, he’s their best shot at this point.

Photo: Aug 26, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; Network television commentator Al Michaels before the game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Arizona Cardinals at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Joe Buck to leave FOX, join Troy Aikman at ESPN

Joe Buck smiles

Troy Aikman shook up the NFL broadcasting world in stunning fashion recently when he reached an agreement with ESPN, and his longtime partner is reportedly going with him.

Joe Buck is expected to leave FOX to become the play-by-play announcer for “Monday Night Football,” Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reports. FOX granted Buck permission to negotiate with ESPN on Friday, and a deal is expected to be finalized in the near future.

Buck had one year and $11 million remaining on his deal with FOX. There had been talk of ESPN and FOX agreeing to a trade for Buck, but Marchand reports that FOX is letting Buck out of his contract as a gesture of goodwill.

Buck’s deal with ESPN is expected to be in the $60-75 million range. Aikman agreed to an even bigger contract with ESPN, so the network was clearly committed to reviving its long-struggling “Monday Night Football” booth.

Buck had been at FOX since 1994. His departure means the network will also have to find another play-by-play announcer for MLB playoff games and the World Series.

Photo: Jan 14, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; FOX analyst Joe Buck before the NFC Divisional Playoff football game between the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Troy Aikman makes surprising revelation about leaving FOX for ESPN

Troy Aikman in a suit

Troy Aikman will start a new gig next season after he accepted a massive contract offer from ESPN, and he may never know if FOX would have been willing to match it.

During an appearance on Sports Radio 96.7 and 1310 The Ticket in Dallas this week, Aikman shared a surprising piece of information about the events that led to him leaving FOX for ESPN. He said FOX never made a final offer to him after he received the offer from ESPN, which Aikman found “strange.”

“It is a strange set of circumstances that led me to where I am now and not be back at Fox,” Aikman said, as transcribed by Greg Joyce of the New York Post. “And I never would have envisioned that six months ago and so it is strange. When negotiations couldn’t reach, what I felt was fair value, I was able to negotiate an opt-out after six months which allowed me to be a free agent.”

Aikman was referring to his previous contract with FOX. He signed a four-year extension worth $13.2 million per year prior to the 2021 season. The deal included his and Joe Buck’s new “Thursday Night Football” responsibilities, but Aikman negotiated an opt-out into his contract. He exercised that opt-out clause when ESPN made their offer, but the Hall of Famer still expected FOX to make an effort to keep him.

“Then Fox never jumped into the game. They never made an offer,” Aikman said. “I didn’t have any conversations with Fox, until I got a call to congratulate me on my new deal. So that was a decision they made and it’s fine.”

It’s possible that FOX simply was not willing to pay as much as ESPN, so they didn’t want to insult Aikman with a lower offer. After all, Aikman will now be the highest-paid analyst in NFL history with his ESPN deal.

There has been talk of FOX letting Buck walk as well, and they may do so with a somewhat unique arrangement. The NFL TV landscape will look a lot different in 2022, and there could be even more changes coming.

Photo: Nov 21, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys former quarterback Troy Aikman attends the NFL game between the Houston Texans and the Indianapolis Colts at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jay Cutler wants to replace Troy Aikman on FOX

Jay Cutler

FOX is in the market for a new No. 1 commentator for NFL games, and Jay Cutler is volunteering for duty.

Cutler said he would be eager to embrace a broadcasting opportunity, and confirmed that his agents have already put his name forward for opportunities at FOX, as well as Amazon and other NFL rights-holders.

“I would love to do it. I think it’s a fun gig. It keeps you in the game,” Cutler told Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports on Wednesday. “If an opportunity arises, I would jump at it.”

Cutler had agreed to join FOX’s No. 2 broadcast team in 2017, but decided to return to the NFL for one more season before ever calling a game. He has since launched a podcast and media company, but he says commentary is the one thing he still wants to do that he has yet to tackle.

“I could do everything I wanted to do. Color commentary is kind of the last bucket. If I can get that filled, it would be great,” Cutler said.

FOX hired Cutler once, so they obviously saw something in him five years ago, and other networks have reportedly looked at him since. The 38-year-old is clearly done with his NFL career, so the network would not have to worry about losing him again.

The big opening for FOX is on its No. 1 team after Troy Aikman left for ESPN. Putting Cutler on such a high-ranking crew would be a risk, but CBS did it with Tony Romo and it worked out. FOX might want to do the same.

FOX Sports could reportedly lose another key member of NFL coverage

Troy Aikman in a suit

FOX Sports is being forced to overhaul its NFL coverage this offseason, with Troy Aikman leaving the network and rumors suggesting Joe Buck could follow. According to a new report, a third member of the network’s NFL team could be on the way out as well.

Sideline reporter Erin Andrews is set to become a free agent, as her contract is about to expire, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. FOX wants to keep Andrews, though ESPN would also be interested in bringing her back to the network.

Andrews has typically handled sideline duty for FOX’s top game, having most recently been paired with Tom Rinaldi in that job. According to Marchand, ESPN has just re-signed sideline reporter Lisa Salters, who is expected to retain her role on “Monday Night Football.” If Andrews were to jump to ESPN, the network could use a similar arrangement to FOX by using one reporter for each sideline. If not, Andrews would have to be placed in another role.

One reason FOX would like to keep Andrews is probably to have at least some continuity on their top broadcast crew. Aikman has already jumped to ESPN, and there are persistent claims that the network may bring Buck in as well. That is a lot of upheaval, and the situation is made even more significant by the fact that FOX has the Super Bowl next year.

Photo: Oct 21, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; NFL Half of Fame quarterback Troy Aikman before the game between the Cleveland Browns and the Denver Broncos at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports