You never know when a major opportunity in the sports industry will come knocking at your door. For Noah Eagle, he would never imagine that as a senior at Syracuse, working as the television voice for the Los Angeles Clippers could potentially be an option.
Eagle was a guest on the You Know I’m Right podcast with Nick Durst and Joe Calabrese to talk about his career. He mentioned that the Clippers job was great timing for him, but when the leader of the Sports Media Center at Syracuse asked him to send his basketball reel, he had no idea what it was for.
“It was really awesome timing… The timing, if it’s right, the stars can align,” Eagle said. “I got really lucky. I got really fortunate in particular with the timing of the Clippers job. I was a senior at Syracuse, the longtime voice of the Clippers, Ralph Lawler, it was his 40th and final year with the team. He was retiring at the end of the year.
“I didn’t know this. I wasn’t aware of any of it, but I did get a call from a professor I had. She was the leader of the Sports Media Center at Syracuse at Newhouse, Olivia Stomski. She reached out to me and said ‘Send me your basketball reel, somebody is interested.'”
“I said, can you be more specific? She said, no I can’t. I said, why not? She said, trust me,” Eagle continued. “I put together a basketball reel of all the stuff I had to that point (January-early February 2019). I had decided my senior year, I’m not going to focus too hard on the job stuff until March. I wanted to enjoy my senior year, then I was going to go full-steam ahead with it. That was kind of my mentality going into the year.”
After sending his resume and bio a week later and still not knowing what position he was sending these things for, Eagle was driving to the studio where he hosted a radio show in downtown Syracuse and he got a call from a Los Angeles number. He ended up taking a chance and picked up the call:
“I answer it and it’s this big, booming voice,” Eagle recalled. “‘This is Nick Davis from FOX Sports West and Prime Ticket. I’m sure you are aware we are looking to replace Ralph Lawler with the Clippers and your name came up. So, we’d like to fly you out and interview you and audition you next week.’ I thought someone was going to pop out from my back seat and slap me across the face. I said, `’Are you sure you got the right guy?'”
After auditioning and having a memorable interview with owner Steve Ballmer, Eagle ended up getting the radio play-by-play job when Brian Sieman moved to television.
Of course, everyone knows Noah Eagle’s dad, Ian. Noah watched his dad in the booth from a very young age and one of the reasons that helped him decide he wanted to be in the same profession was the excitement Ian had for the job he was doing:
“He took me to work with him from a pretty early age,” Eagle explained. “In terms of physically being in the booth, I was probably 3-4 years old. I took a liking to it very early. There was never something that he said, ‘Oh man, I really am praying that my son loves sports.’ It just happened naturally.
“People always ask me when I decided I wanted to get into it? I think it was pretty simple in the sense that I had a good relationship with my dad and I saw he enjoyed what he did… He enjoys it, he gets up, he gets excited for it.
“Sure, could he get stressed out if he had five games in six days in five different cities? Without a doubt. Anybody would. But when he was there, when he came home in the morning, he was excited and he was smiling talking about it. All of those factors certainly helped in my decision-making and it swayed me in that direction.
“I think once you get to the point where you are perceptive enough and you know enough, you see a TV and understand what’s happening. I would see a TV and go, ‘There’s Dad.’ At the same time, I looked at it as it’s just him going to work. That was the mentality I grew up with. He gets excited for his job. That’s what really stood out to me.”
During this podcast, Eagle will also explain how he ended up working the 2021 Tokyo Olympics for NBC and why he was so excited to get the play-by-play job for the NFL Wild Card playoff games broadcast on Nickelodeon.
Tony Bruno Relives Favorite Moments With Angelo Cataldi on 94 WIP
“I loved every day. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that.”
Tony Bruno has been a staple of the sports radio business for decades. Bruno is from Philadelphia and was teamed up in the early nineties with a duo still dominating the local airwaves there today, Angelo Cataldi and Al Morganti. The three reunited Thursday morning on 94 WIP to remember the glory days of their partnership and friendship.
One of the first moments Cataldi asked Bruno if he remembered was the update he did from a tree outside of their studio and the answer was an emphatic yes.
“Absolutely, it’s one of the highlights of my life – other than interviewing four Presidents and every sports athlete in history – there’s no bigger moment than me climbing up in the tree, which was obstructing our view of William Penn and the city skyline. That’s what I do, I was a man of action. I’m not one of these guys that talks the talk, I climb the tree to do whatever is necessary.”
More frivolity followed when Cataldi harkened back to a segment of ‘Damsels in Distress’ and a time in which Bruno was sent on the street during a snowstorm to help shovel people out of their driveways. Bruno quickly recalled, “Man of the people. I should run for – I should of run for Governor of Pennsylvania or Senate or something.”
Bruno added that his favorite rant (and one that Cataldi loved too) wasn’t about the Cowboys or sports at all. “My favorite was my Infinity Broadcasting rant where I went on one day and even ripped our bosses, all the way up to the top of Infinity Broadcasting.” Cataldi cackled and praised Bruno’s rants more before being interrupted by Bruno saying, “yeah, my only regret is I never really ripped Al (Morganti) the way I should have ripped him. I let him of the hook so many times.”
An insightful moment came at the end of the call when Cataldi asked rhetorically if Bruno ever thought they (Cataldi & Morganti) would still be doing this thirty years later and then asked if Tony ever regretted leaving.
“It was a tough decision, Ang,” Bruno answered. “I was given an ultimatum. When I came to work with you guys, I loved every day. Every day we had fun. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that. It wasn’t one of those, ‘oh I got to go; I’m too big for these guys’. I even turned the ESPN job down a couple of times.
“My kids were still younger then, I didn’t want to move. I didn’t have to move. They said just come up here on weekends and that’s how ESPN Radio started. So I was doing weekends and Tom Bigby (Program Director) didn’t like that either, told me it wasn’t going to work. It was a philosophical thing. When he told me, ‘you should go because we are not going to pay you what they’re paying you,’ I said ok.
Cataldi began to sign off with Bruno with genuine thanks: “I got to tell you something Tone, we are indebted to you for the rest of our lives because we both learned so much from you and you are one of the great talents that radio has ever had.”
Dodgers Temporarily Pull Broadcasters Off Road
“If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road.”
When the Los Angeles Dodgers visit the East Coast later this week, the men that call the action on TV and radio will not be with them. The games will instead be broadcast on AM570 LA Sports and SportsNet LA from their respective studios.
“Due to a few members of the Dodgers’ broadcast team having recently tested positive for COVID-19, and out of an abundance of caution, the Dodgers have decided to not travel their broadcasters to upcoming games in Philadelphia and Washington,” the Dodgers announced in a statement. Similar to the 2020 and 2021 MLB seasons, the games will be broadcast from Los Angeles,” reads a statement on the team’s Twitter account.
No further details are available, so the severity and the number of cases remain unknown.
Last September, both members of the Dodgers’ television play-by-play crew were forced into quarantine. Joe Davis was the first to test positive, followed later that month by Orel Hershiser.
On Wednesday, manager Dave Roberts told the media that the Dodgers’ roster and coaching staff are not effected.
“There’s there’s no symptoms in the clubhouse. I think that as far as the upstairs, as an organization, we’re all just trying to be very cautious. But as far as in the clubhouse, coaches, training staff, nothing like that.”
If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road. 2022 was supposed to be a return to normal for the Dodgers and many other teams after not letting broadcasters travel in 2020 and 2021.
Pat McAfee: ‘No One Will Disrespect Jim Rome On My Show’
“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle.”
Jim Rome is a sports radio icon and Pat McAfee recognizes that.
On The Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday, McAfee was talking to co-host A.J. Hawk about how Rome trended recently on Twitter.
This happened after news of Tom Brady’s FOX Sports deal surfaced, and a list of the top paid sports media personalities was compiled. Rome came in behind Brady at number two making a reported $30 million a year, and many were surprised by that number. McAfee wasn’t.
“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle,” he said. “I have nothing but respect for Jim Rome.”
McAfee gave props to Rome, 57, saying he’s been doing sports talk probably longer than anyone. He’s one of the most widely distributed hosts in the country. Pat said he won’t tolerate anyone talking smack about the Smack-Off King.
“No disrespect will be said on this show of Jim Rome, ever,” he said. “Love that man.”