Wednesday, January 30, 2008
If you just can't get enough Drake coverage, check out http://wesleyvaclav.blogspot.com/
Ron Maly keeps the Bulldog stories coming.
Why not name the Iowa State court for the godfather of Hilton Magic, Johnny Orr. "The Orr Floor" sounds right to me.
Roger Clemens looks more guilty and more desperate each time he tries another unconvincing PR move. His latest press release supposedly pointed out that many great pitchers continued their excellence past the age of 40. One big problem: five of the pitchers named never pitched past age 39 and collectively they faded fast in their late thirties.
Best anecdote of the week... NFL legend Gale Sayers asking Heather Burnside if she knew a good place to get a manicure and pedicure. Gale always did have style.
After watching Sayers' do a great job at the Rally Against Cancer, and being reminded of his greatness on and off the field, I watched both versions of Brian's Song. The original is a classic. A little dated now, but you can't beat the banter between James Caan and Billy Dee Williams. The 2001 remake is also good, though it's jarring when you see and hear the same scenes reenacted. Ways the remake improved on the original: giving more time to the wives, showing Brian Piccolo's daughters, and seeing Picollo's physical deteriation. In the original, Caan looked nearly the same on his deathbed. I cried watching both. Great story.
When the Brian's Song remake aired in 2001, I was working, and without thinking, I called Larry Cotlar in the movie's final few minutes. Cotman, I still owe you for doing that. There's no excuse. Don't you hate that when you're completely into something and the phone rings. (I better not ask for examples.)
Have you seen that creepy ESPN commercial for College Gameday? The one where the people in the hot tub have tiny heads on their shoulders? Weird.
The best sports book I've read in a long time is God Save the Fan. It skewers four things: players, owners, media, and fans. We all have it coming.
Thumbs up to Tim Dwight for going to Iraq to spend time with our troops. Great job, Tim.
And finally, thank you for all the congratulations on my marriage to Jenny. I truly appreciate your goodwill. It's been a few months now, and I've never been happier or felt more blessed. I realize how lucky I am. We're like the Brady Bunch, only with all boys. Pray for us.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
The movie has some incredibly tense scenes. A couple of times I was reminded of the immortal Aliens---especially in the tunnels. Unlike Aliens, I didn't care enough about the characters, and the ending will leave some unhappy, but overall I somewhat enjoyed the ride. B- I should note I've talked to people who loved this movie and some who hated it. I'm somewhere in the middle.
Thank you to all the people who wrote into to express just how awful Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry Chocolate tastes. It's hard to put into words, but many of you tried. I'd say a mat shot at closing time comes closest, only this doesn't give you a buzz. I was also fascinated that one person, Sara, actually likes this soft drink gone bad. Sara, are you sure you're drinking Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry Chocolate?
Shawn Terrell is really getting upset about the Pearl Jam bashing. You may be having fun, but I have to work with him.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
It was great to hear the students Saturday night. The Knapp Center hasn't rocked like that for a Valley game in... well, ever.
Big thanks to Keno Davis. After coaching the Bulldogs to their 17th straight win, he stopped in the parking lot and gave reporter Chris Hassel a jump start. Well, Chris' car. Keno does it all!
My youngest son, Colin, now walks around the house saying the following over and over: "Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die." I couldn't be prouder.
The movie Hot Rod is growing on me. Teens and tweens love it, and now I find myself laughing out loud at the punch dancing and stunts gone bad. It's funny stupid.
The John Stoddard Center Rally Against Cancer was a sold out success in West Des Moines. It was my privilege to introduce a real legend, Gale Sayers. Sayers is 64 but looks 54, or younger. For a guy like me who grew up watching Brian's Song with my father every Thanksgiving, it was like being a kid again. I though Sayers was at this best Saturday night during the audience Q&A. He talked about what a mistake it was for the Vikings to move indoors (no Super Bowl appearances since) and how much he hates players celebrating like it's an individual sport.
Major League Baseball's most respect umpire, Tim McClelland, was so moved by the Rally Against Cancer, he spontaneously donated four Cubs playoff tickets to every home game. The tickets went for a few thousand dollars, which still trumps scalpers. And yes, Tim thinks the Cubs will win the division. Good news for us Cubs fans.
Anyway, I had a great time, and was fortunate to co-host with Erin Kiernan. Erin makes it look easy. I was nervous. After all, it was Gale Sayers!
John Bachman spent the week following Tiger Woods around the golf course in San Diego. John picked a good tourney. Tiger won by 97 strokes. John came in second.
Do not, I repeat DO NOT try the Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry Chocolate. It tastes awful. It likes a melted Tootsie Pop from a garbage bin. I still can't shake the aftertaste. YUCK.
Just think, Mediacom has a hotter property in the Drake Bulldogs than the Big Ten Network has in the Hawks. Won't stay that way, but it sure doesn't help the BTN's already shaky case. There's nothing fan friendly about a network trying to make money off its hardcore followers, no matter how you spin it.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
-Once-a-week is plenty for this blog.
-Pearl Jam went downhill after Vitalogy.
-I need an assistant just for Andy's fan mail.
-Chris wears some really ugly sweaters.
I press forward anyway.
We're not overhyping Drake. 16 straight wins is impressive anywhere, and of all the one loss or no loss teams to play Creighton at the Qwest Center, Drake is the first to win. First of 19. The RPI (power ranking) of 8 is more important than the AP ranking of 22.
Another reason I don't gamble: Iowa State at Kansas. My buddy who does, took the Cyclones and 23.5 points. Seemed like a good bet to me. With 10 seconds to play and ISU down 22, it looked good for the friend I'll call "Ryan" (is his real name). But then, ISU missed an easy shot, KU kicks it to the other end, and makes a jumper at the buzzer. Kansas by 24. See ya later, money.
Hang in there, Todd Lickliter. It will get better soon.
Reluctantly I went to see Juno with my nephew, Jason. Didn't think I'd like it much, and I really enjoyed it. It's so fresh and quirky that it took me a few minutes to settle into it, but once I was hooked, I really cared about the characters. Props to Iowa's Diablo (Brooke) Cody on her much deserved Oscar nomination for writing Juno. A- I was also pleased to see Tommy Lee Jones a surprise best actor nominee for The Valley of Elah. He was terrific, and nearly as good in No Country for Old Men.
Can't believe Gene Simmons basically fired himself on Celebrity Apprentice. He was fun to watch. (Hey, there's a writer's strike.)
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
This Drake story is good for everyone. It's just nothing but positive energy. No one hates Drake. When the Hawks do well, many Cyclone fans hate it, and vice-versa. But Drake is Switzerland...
Drake "gets it". Of course the Bulldogs noticed all the fans and media started showing up when Drake started winning, but the Dogs aren't mad or resentful... They're appreciate and thankful. That's what you should do, enjoy the ride. Too often when a team starts receiving coverage and sold out crowds, players or coaches or ADs grumble, "Oh sure, now that we're winning, you care." Well, yeah. Hello. The more people interested, the more everything. That's just the way it works. See how much coverage ESPN gives the Timberwolves this week...
Loved Cotman and Dolph's call of the last-second win over Bradley. Couldn't really understand it, but that's what was great. Unadulterated joy...
Just received my copy of Mark Meisenheimer's new book No Pants Required. Chapter 9: What's Bugging Andy Now? It's targeted toward people thinking about getting into sportscasting, but it's so peppered with people you know (Andy, Todd Bailey, John Walters, Zubin Mehenti, Paul Burmeister, Mark himself), that anyone who follows local sports broadcasting should enjoy the inside stories. More info at www.nopantsrequired.com
We'll have Mark on SoundOFF soon to talk about the book. I think it might go over better than the immortal Green Fields...
Loved the anecdote from the Register's Randy Peterson about Iowa coach Todd Lickliter making the Hawks go back and clean up after themselves in the visitor's locker room after winning at Michigan. I'm a father. I can relate...
How did tennis go from one bland Superstar, Pete Sampras, to another, Roger Federer. These guys have everything but charisma. Federer is beyond belief. And boring...
So what if Tom Brady had a cast on his foot, he can't move anyway. He could beat the giants with a leg cast on...
I understand Albert Pujols being upset he was falsely linked to the Mitchell report for a few hours, but he needs to practice a little forgiveness. The anger won't serve anyone well, especially Pujols...
I'm not the LT fan I was in the past. I can't get on him for not playing---how would I know how hurt he is or isn't---but he deserves criticism for not supporting his teammates more...
Did you see Tom Coughlin's face? I haven't seen mild frostbite like that since Steve Martin and John Candy rode in the back of that pick-up truck...
Monday, January 14, 2008
I'm okay with the Barnstormers signing former Cyclone Jason Berryman. I was against Dan McCarney putting him back on scholarship, but this is a pro team, and unlike most star athletes, Berryman actually paid an appropirate price for his criminal behavior...
Cheers to my former colleague Mark Meisenheimer. Mark wrote another book, "No Pants Required", about sportscasting. Info at www.nopantsrequired.com (I'm shocked that URL isn't taken by some porn peddler, but it's actually Mark's book.). There are chapters showcasing several of my favorite people in this business: Andy Fales, Todd Bailey, Zubin Mehenti, and John Walters...
That was great coaching by Todd Lickliter against #6 Michigan State. Lickliter's Iowa team was completely outgunned by the far more talented Spartans, but he found a way to give Iowa a chance by slowing the game down and giving his team a chance to win ugly. It wasn't pretty, but it worked...
I'm convinced the Big Ten Network is bad for Iowa. The last thing you need to do is teach your fans they can live without you, and that's just what the BTN is doing for Iowa. It also hurts attendance by making the players less familiar to fans, and by starting many games at 8 p.m. That's way too late for weeknight games. How many parents are taking their kids from Des Moines to Iowa City on a school night when they won't be back until midnight? I had to wait for Shawn to show highlights of Saturday's shocker because I don't have the Big Ten Network either...
The I-Cubs do just about everything right. FanFest is another example...
I've never seen an NFL quarterback play better than Tom Brady is right now. It's unreal...
Craig Brackins should score at least 15 points every game for Iowa State. The guy has offensive skills like few players anywhere. He's a Freshman, so he'll look lost on occasion, but he should also take over now and again...
Any talk of Greg McDermott not doing a good job is premature. Give him time. It's too early...
No Country for Old Men is a great film. Tense, violent, and unpredictable. However, if you like neat, tidy endings, stay away. A-
Andy and I are overwhelmed at all the e-mails (and old fashioned letters). We've received more than a hundred, most of them positive and enthusiastic. (There are dozens of examples in the previous three blog entries)
I can't beging to fully articulate how nice it is to have Andy back. We were giddy doing SoundOFF together again, and if anything, might have been having too much fun, but we'll work hard to find the right tone.
I also feel blessed to have Shawn Terrell, Chris Hassel, and Heather Burnside contributing good ideas and content to both SoundOFF and our nightly sportscasts...
Finally, good to have Erin back. She gave us all a scare on caucus night...
Thursday, January 10, 2008
Dear Keith & Andy,
I am thrilled to have Andy back on Sound Off, in part because he’s funny and genuine, but largely because both of you have such excellent chemistry together. You two are the Joey and Chandler, Han and Luke, or Jay and Silent Bob (without the silent) to our beloved local sports show. Carry on!
Man, is it good to have Andy back!!! Definitely appreciated the going back to the original theme song too. I literally fell on the floor laughing during "he said/he said." And with SNF over, no more shortened episodes. Whoopee!
I had the good fortune of being in Des Moines and being able to watch the return episode, but now I'm back in Philadelphia and can't watch you guys on WHO. Any chance you could get the audio podcast of the show back up? Lately it hasn't been updated with recent episodes. In the future should I keep asking for it, or has the podcast been scrapped?
I can now watch sound off again, without cringing (much).
All is right with the world again.
Why Andy Fales? He does not seem to know sports...we are sorry to see him back on WHO. Watching sports programs where he is involved are not fun to watch. Like Murph..but can't handle Andy.
ANDY IS BACK, ANDY IS BACK, OH LORD THANK YOU ANDY IS BACK
We are happy Andy is back. My daughter graduated from South Tama and was the one ringing that cowbell a few years ago when Andy landed in Tama with Chopper 13 and you guys kept repeating that famous line from SNL "we need more cowbell." ...
I sure would love for you guys to describe something on Soundoff on 1/13 with a quote "we need more cowbell" as she won't get to see the show for 6 months till she comes back in June.
P.S. Keith-been watching you since Lonesome Dove The Series on Sunday nights at Ch. 5:)
Connie in Tama
I was having a pretty crappy night last Sunday and was flipping through the channels and stopped on Sound Off when I saw Andy. I got excited and turned up the volume thinking he was back for a visit. How exciting it was to find out he’s back for good. Andy instantly turned my frown upside down. Welcome back!!!
Lisa in Otley
My gracious mother taped last week's show and mailed it to me. It is
SO nice to have the fabulous show back again and what a great show it
was last week. BUT, you gotta get the show livestreamed. It cost $5
just to mail a videotape to Kansas City and mom said she's not going
to do this for me every week!!!
Thanks Mom and it's good to have you back, Andy.
Travis in KC (for now... it's very tempting to return to IA)
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
I just wanted to drop a short note to let you know how much I enjoyed Sound Off on Sunday when Andy returned... You guys (including B-Ross) just seemed to be having a blast laughing and such, like a bunch of guys hanging out watching a game without wives or girl friends to tell you to stop acting stupid... That’s what makes Sound Off so popular, you have fun doing it.
And I loved the intro showing when Andy left and then you waiting for him to return, what a scream!
Hi-I just wanted to let you all know that I'm so excited that Andy Fales is back!!!!! I totally enjoy your Sunday night show! I was "teary" when Andy left as he walked away from us all-but was totally "happy" when he returned coming back to us- AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks for the entertaining and informative "Sound Off" each Sunday evening! We really enjoy Keith, Andy and B. Ross! Keep up the good work and welcome back, Andy!
Ever since Seinfeld went off the air I have had an empty feeling in my life.
The one thing that could ease that pain was watching Sound Off. I found
that after seeing a few episodes of What's Bugging Andy I pretty much forgot
about Seinfeld. But then you left for Kansas City and once again I would
stare at the TV not knowing what the point was of having one was any more.
The only thing that started to bring me out of my funk was the anticipation
of American Gladiator. Needless to say when I found out you were back the
same weekend American Gladiator started I had to run around the house 3
times I was so excited.
Thanks for coming back!
I watched SoundOFF from Sunday and all I can say is... WOW! You and Andy are off-the-charts GREAT together!!! I'd forgotten how good Andy is- his time in KC apparently only made him sharper and appreciate you, and being on SoundOFF, even more. He was better than his last month on the show.
Heather in West Des Moines
Wow. That's a nice one to end on and very appreciated. We'll continue to work hard to live up to all these nice thoughts, and even try to win over a few people behind the not so nice thoughts.
Monday, January 07, 2008
We’re so glad that Andy is back. We hadn’t watched Sound Off for a long time (about 7 months and 1 week), but laughed and laughed on Sunday night. Thanks for having such a fun show.
JJ in Clive
Just wanted to let you know that I love having Andy Fales back on WHO and Sound Off. I look forward to checking out your highlights every Monday via the internet. I am confused about Andy's role at WHO, his picture & bio are in the sports department, but they are also under the regular reporters too. What else can we expect from the Boy Wonder and is there a 3-day weather forecast coming from him soon?
Mike in Minneapolis
First and foremost, huge props to the webmaster (hate that term - it sounds like someone's playing Dungeons and Dragons) for getting the clips on the site so quickly. I was pleasantly surprised to be able to watch first thing Monday morning. Second, and I'm stating the obvious, it's just a much better show. There's better chemistry, energy, personality, content, etc. Congratulations.
Ryan in Clive
The best present ever!-Andy is back. Yay! I thought I was dreaming when I tuned in Sun night and saw him. I don't even like sports but you two are like Lucy and Ethel, Laurel and Hardy, Clooney and Pitt. You are more entertaining than any sports event you cover. My husband even bought Andys CD-we are crazed fans of both of you!
I like how everyone has handled this-with humor and fun, and acceptance of the fact that Andy likes IOWA. What a treasure we have in him.
Go forward and laugh! We love it.
I am so happy that I stayed up for the entire show last night. It was great. You guys were awesome. I already got a call from a friend this a.m. telling me how excited he was to see the show last night. He loved it too.
I watched the show last night, and would like to get a transcript or copy of what Andy said about "finding happiness" during his "What's Bugging Andy". I thought it was very insightful! Can you please direct me on how to either download or send me a copy. Thank you, Kathy
I’m so glad to see Andy again! It was hard to watch “Sound Off” without him! I was disappointed though when I listened to his first “What’s Bugging Andy” since his return. Lame! He missed us – he was 3 hours away (get in a car and drive)! It wasn’t the same – duh; it was Kansas City! He missed Iowa? Hmmmm………I want to know the REAL reason he came back – I think it’s a girl! I want to know what’s really going on -
The Neighborhood Watch, Pam in Urbandale
I wanted to drop you a quick email and say that Sound Off was awesome last night – great job. The show will continue to be a “Must See TV” moment on Sunday nights. The Pick A Side segment was hilarious, right before you mentioned to Andy to stop looking at you I pointed out to my wife how Andy was continually looking over at you and was not focused on the camera. We were laughing before you even mentioned it, that was definitely one for the archives.
Brian in Des Moines
Wow. What's Bugging Andy is bigger than Chopper 13. Welcome back Andy. Free Willy
I missed the show last nite cuz i was hungover as crap, but my twin sister watched and said it was HILARIOUS!!!! i have it recorded so will watch it tonite. can't wait!!!! welcome back - long time Sound Off fan - since the days of Round Guy and Chris from Greenbay call'n in - whatever happened to that idiot? that was FUNNY stuff!!!!! welcome back ANDY!!!!!
I received a text from a buddy last night stating I HAD to watch Soundoff that night. So I clicked it on and was more than pleasantly surprised to see Andy back. I had tried to keep watching after Andy left, but each week my interest waned until I finally just stopped watching... But Andy has the ability to keep the show interesting even when things are anything but in the local sports world. His contribution to Soundoff is immeasurable.
Welcome back Andy!
In Chizik We Trust
I am not a sports fan by any means. Other than NASCAR Nextel Cup, I follow absolutely nothing in the sports realm. Before you left the show, I would watch SoundOFF simply to see your weekly ranting and raving on the "What's Bugging Andy?" segment. I haven't watched SoundOFF since you left because of the absence of the segment. Now that you are back, I will be watching the show on a regular basis again just for that gut busting laugh I get out of watching you get mad. Welcome back Andy!
Andy is back.....I can see the light. The show tonight is the best one I have seen in 7 months and a week. I could not agree more with Andy about the Pats. They deserve an * by their record this year. One final thing GO DOGS!!!
Andy! Great to have you back & in fabulous form! Love it!
You are a true treat to have back in the state – we missed you!
Kendra -West Des Moines
Just out of curiosity, did Andy's return to NewsCenter 13 have anything to do with the increase of the minimum wage here in Iowa? Grow up Andy . . . prove to the viewers you can be a man with some integrity, common sense, and a big heart. It is high time to get over the things that are bugging you.
My 88 year old mother, Dorothy John, of Lenox is a great fan of sound off and
was very sorry to see Andy leave. Andy, welcome back and if you could say hello
to my mother, it just might keep me from getting in trouble with her for this email.
Jeanne in Ames
Yeaaaaaaaaay! Andy's back! You just missed us sooooooo much and Iowa winters, too, right?! So, do we get to have a welcome back party, too?
And yes, we will miss Heather and look forward to seeing her in your place once in awhile! She proves that women can talk sports! Thank you, Heather!
An Andy fan in Urbandale
It is good to laugh again on Sunday nights.
Welcome Home Andy.
Rod & Chris
Bravo and welcome back Andy! That intro made me laugh, cry, caused for introspection and personal reflection. Welcome back!
TK West Des Moines
I just want to say that when Andy left and he said he is doing us a favor, he was right. We want to hear about sports not whats bugging the idiot.
So I like most everybody else missed Andy over the last six months….but one question…can I get a refund on that “Best of” DVD that I bought thinking he would be gone for good.
Welcome Back Andy!
Dave in Bondurant
I just heard that Opie Fales is back! That's great, the show has been lacking a little something in his absents. All joking aside----WELCOME BACK OPIE.
West Des Moines
Happy WHO-TV sports is back with Andy again. Can't wait for the bugging stories.
A friend in Marshalltown
Andy, you are like Cher. First, you have a 37 week farewell tour to promote a "Best of" compilation. Then, after a 7 month "retirement", you're right back to it. And, like an obsessed fan, I cheer your return.
Doug in Urbandale
Dear Andy,Some things have changed since you were last here! Iowa didn't go to a bowl game, the Cubs have become the best team in the N.L. Central and Drake is the best basketball team in the state of Iowa...YOU FOOL! Your leaving screwed up the entire space/time continu...uh...um...thingy...!!
Welcome back Andy!Shane - Marshalltown
I'm so glad to see Andy back! I can't think of any better way to start off the new year.
As you see, mostly positive, but no one as opinionated and original as Andy will ever win everybody over. I'm with the overwhelming majority: really happy Andy's back.
Thank you for all the feedback, here and elsewhere.
Thursday, January 03, 2008
I-State played Upstate? Be honest, have you ever heard of Upstate? I knew next to nothing until I called WOI for satellite coordinates to the game, Eric Murphy (no relation) was nice enough to give them to me, and educate me about Upstate. The Spartans used to play D3 and they're in their first season of D1. Eric also told me their former name, which I'm already shaky on, but I think it was Spartanburg. By any name, it was an easy win for the Cyclones...
How 'bout them Dogs! Drake looks for real. They already proved they can blow out ISU and win at Iowa, but knocking off Southern Illinois was the biggest hurdle yet. The Salukis started ownership of Drake back in 1999, and with 17 straight wins, it was a benchmark opportunity for Drake. Mission accomplished. The Dogs could be NCAA tourney bound for the first time since dirt. Two of our Drake alums, Erin Kiernan and Andy Fales, are already walking tall...
I've only watched one bowl from start to finish, the Cap One. I tuned in early to see if rumors of Tim Tebow playing without pads were true. Not true. Tebow was good, but Chad Henne was even better. Great game...
Is it just me or is Oklahoma overrated every year?
No sportscasts today (unless something big breaks). It's Caucus time and I'm field-producing for Dave Price at Hillary Clinton headquarters. Field-producing is a fancy way of saying "extra set of hands". Or as Dave calls it, "Keith, get me a Pepsi". The only downside of working the Caucus is I don't get to stand for someone. What a privilege we have in Iowa...
Belated congratulations to Andy Garman and John Meyer, both were deservedly promoted at KCCI after Heidi Soliday's exit...
Biggest movie disappointment of me in 2007? Walk Hard. I was so excited to see it, I went on New Year's Eve, but after a very funny, and crude, first half hour, it lost steam. I like funny stupid (see Talladega Nights or Dumb & Dumber), but Walk Hard is more often stupid than funny. I'm stunned at all the great reviews. It's just okay. Plus, three different times we're forced to view a man's junk. I'm talking full frontal nudity. C+ for the early laughs...
I'm re-watching season one of the West Wing on DVD. What a phenomenal show...
As you may have heard, Andy's returning to SoundOFF (and channel 13 news). He'll catch us up on the previous 7 months Sunday night live at 10:35 p.m. It should be fun for the many who love Andy and the few who love to hate Andy. I appreciate all the e-mails and calls from people excited Andy's coming back, and even the two who now vow to never watch again. We hope you'll change your mind...