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High expectations mean spoiled fans in Broncos Country

High expectations mean spoiled fans in Broncos Country

"Unlike in the Elway years we failed to watch the Broncos with wide-eyed amazement. Instead we anticipated victories and felt vindicated when they came. That's why the loss in the...

Radio Row INTERVIEW: Peter Burns scored his dream gig but the Press Box will remain in good hands

Radio Row INTERVIEW: Peter Burns scored his dream gig but the Press Box will remain in good hands

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Drew Soicher’s bad joke pissed the Broncos off pretty good

Drew Soicher’s bad joke pissed the Broncos off pretty good

Drew Soicher's silly routine on 9 News got him in trouble this time. Audio provided by the Press Box Read More ....

Dusty Saunders takes Drew Soicher to task at long last

Dusty Saunders takes Drew Soicher to task at long last

"9 News employs dozens of excellent reporters and anchors who help the station set the gold standard with its local news product. Even its other sports anchors, Rod Mackey, Aaron...

The de-Masaiing of the Nuggets has begun

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Big idea: The Mile High Sports Magazine “Boys of Summer” issue.

Big idea: The Mile High Sports Magazine “Boys of Summer” issue.

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Change nothing but change the name Redskins

Change nothing but change the name Redskins

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Kathy Sabine's next level weather dong

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Better grilling NOW with Mangrate, the grill enhancement system. Use promo code: Denver for a $10 discount

Better grilling NOW with Mangrate, the grill enhancement system. Use promo code: Denver for a $10 discount

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Dear John: a face-painting fanatical Broncos fan confronts Reidy's disgust

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Brian Shaw can cement his legacy as Denver's biggest jerk ever

Brian Shaw can cement his legacy as Denver's biggest jerk ever

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Michael Sam's kiss was jarring; not that there's anything wrong with that.

Michael Sam's kiss was jarring; not that there's anything wrong with that.

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Bandwagon vs. Fair Weather Fan : A Tutorial

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Don’t let Donald Sterling give racism center stage

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"This “look at me” rush to protestation gives too much credit to men like Donald Sterling and not enough credit to our society." Read more ...

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Wednesday, 28 November 2012 11:10

The CU football debacle has been sports radio black and sports radio gold

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The firing of Jon Embree is the hottest sports radio topic in years - hotter even than that of Josh McDaniels. This one's got it all!

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It's a perfect storm for sports talk. The story of the firing of Jon Embree is layered enough to keep Colorado’s talking heads debating all day and all night. It has an entire cast of characters, passion, intrigue, long-held loyalties and even racial undertones. Several of the personalities surrounding the saga even work for the stations. What could be better? Mile High Sports host Peter Burns referred to it as “sports radio Christmas”.

The once-proud University of Colorado football program fired its third head coach in six years on Sunday. Jon Embree was a home-town guy who was popular within a certain sect of people whose fuzzy memories of the glory days clash with modern-day realities. Embree has a number of close friends working in the Denver sports media, some of whom even helped push to get him hired, who’ve now been tasked with reporting and discussing his removal with CU Athletic Director Mike Bohn, various CU alumnus and Embree himself.

Embree is seen by some as a coach who was under qualified and ineffective - who was hired only as a stop-gap. By others, he’s considered a martyr, who was never given a reasonable chance to succeed. Best of all for radio talk jocks, his blackness been broached as a reason for his removal, not just by Embree, but by the progenitor of CU football, Bill McCartney.

The legendary coach “Mac”, who drafted a delusional “open letter” to the State of Colorado in support of Embree, appeared on air with Nate Kreckman and former Buff Charles “CJ” Johnson on ESPN Radio 102.3 FM yesterday afternoon. He didn’t beat around the bush when it came to stating that Embree’s termination was hastened by his ethnicity. The assertion, which most people find preposterous, only served to fan the flames of a discussion that has already been burning hot. Coach Mac’s media tour has since continued, and he’s offered the same perspective (or lack thereof) to National outlets, pushing the CU story to another level.

Besides Charles Johnson, two other “Buffs 4 life”, Alfred Williams and Joel Klatt, both of whom work at 104.3 the Fan, have carried the torch for Embree over the past several days.

This morning Klatt and phone-in guest, Channel 4’s Vic Lombardi, treated listeners to a full-blown on-air battle royal that had Klatt pound-the-desk angry and shouting at the top of his lungs. He’s convinced that, despite winning just four games in two seasons, Embree was given a raw deal. Lombardi clearly disagrees, and told Klatt that he has been too close to the program to see the forest for the trees. Klatt told Lombardi that, since he had never played for CU, he had no business commenting on the situation. Their spat was real – and the emotions that it spilled were visceral.

It’s the emotional element that makes the CU football story sports radio gold. The racial component blackens it by dragging it into the mud.

Every program on every local station has thrived on discussing CU football this week. Starting Monday morning, the topic has bumped even the Broncos from the agenda. There hadn’t been much about the program worth discussing until the shake-up, but now there’s almost too much.

What role did race really play in Embree’s firing? How about his hiring? Will the program step up to level of others within it’s new conference, the Pac 10? Who will the next coach be? How much will he be paid? What will the school do to improve recruiting? What about fund raising? Does Mike Bohn have the tools to get the job done? Should he be fired, too? None of these questions appear to be anywhere close to being resolved. Until they are, expect Denver sports radio to continue feeding on Embree’s corpse.

 

 

Last modified on Saturday, 01 December 2012 10:32
Colin Daniels

Colin is the emcee of the South Stands Denver Fancast and maintains our Twitter and Facebook accounts.

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