After 34 Years, Billy Packer Has Called His Last Final Four With CBS

Monday, July 14, 2008


Since I've started this site many people have lost their posts with various networks. I never really took joy in say Theismann being replaced on MNF, or Salisbury getting the ax, but I have to say that today I'm pretty happy with this move. For the second year in a row CBS has decided to make an amazingly smart decision for it's March Madness broadcast (last year it was Gus Johnson in the Sweet Sixteen) and they've replaced 34-year veteran Billy Packer.

Not only is Packer bumped from the main team, but according to the Miami Herald he is gone from CBS College Basketball entirely....

College basketball commentator Billy Packer, who has announced 34 consecutive Final Fours on network television and created a few controversies along the way, will not be returning to CBS for a 28th season, The Miami Herald has learned.

CBS has decided to replace Packer, 68, with studio analyst Clark Kellogg on its lead announcing team.

An announcement is expected Monday, but CBS representative Leslie Anne Wade confirmed the story Sunday night.

CBS believed the time was right for a change and that Kellogg deserved a chance to work with Jim Nantz on the lead team.

Packer, who had been going year to year with his contract, confirmed through a CBS official Sunday that he no longer will broadcast for the network but is pursuing other projects in basketball. Packer declined to comment further.
In all honesty, I can't believe he lasted this long. He was like the "Teflon Don" of Broadcasting. None of his controversial acts were ever punished because (and I'm just assuming here) they brought viewers to the Tournament. Only now, just three months after Packer told people to change the channel during the Final Four because the Tar Heels were down 20, is he being let go. This business continues to amaze me everyday.

As far as Kellogg as the replacement....umm, maybe I shouldn't say anything and just enjoy this for now. Yeah that's what I'll do. Never look a gift horse in the mouth.

CBS set to replace Packer (Miami Herald)
It's Time CBS, Get Someone Other Than Billy Packer (Awful Announcing)

30 Comments:

Can they just yank Nantz and have the Final Four called by Lundquist and Raftery? I'd be in heaven if that was the case

RyanMcD29 said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:27:00 AM  

Is he still going to be torturing us in ACC land on the regional broadcasts?

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:43:00 AM  

I'm surprised CBS hasn't asked Hubie to replace him yet.

Walton's Wisdom said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:46:00 AM  

About @#$%ing time!

SpartanDan said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:56:00 AM  

http://youtube.com/watch?v=nnHksDFHTQI

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 2:00:00 AM  

It isn't my birthday today, and God really does exist.

Kevin said...
Jul 14, 2008, 2:06:00 AM  

Great news for a Monday morning! Hit the bricks, Packer. This was only 20+ years overdue.

Draft King said...
Jul 14, 2008, 6:10:00 AM  

hey billy....boom, outta here.

-dan

-dan said...
Jul 14, 2008, 8:32:00 AM  

Ron Franklin is still the God of collegiate play-by-play. Come on ESPN, bring him back to Saturday night primetime football!!!!!

Snoop said...
Jul 14, 2008, 9:33:00 AM  

I never thought I'd see the day that CBS kicked Packer to the curb. His replacement could be Bugs Bunny and I'd still be dancing in the streets. Packer was a grouchy jerk who didn't seem to even enjoy the college basketball games he was calling, and I couldn't be happier that he's gone.

James said...
Jul 14, 2008, 9:50:00 AM  

I swear to god, 34 years ago I turned to a guy in a bar and said, and I quote, "This guy sucks. They better get rid of him soon."

Well I still stand by that statement. He sucks, and I'm glad he's gone.

(P.S- Just let Dickie-V do all the games...baby)

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 9:54:00 AM  

Cheers around everybody.

Brett said...
Jul 14, 2008, 10:00:00 AM  

Good for Clark Kellogg. He knows the current landscape of college hoops and did a great job calling games with the likes of Gus Johnson or Kevin Harlan each week on CBS. I'd to a tandem like that get the shot in March instead of Nantz who used to be decent but is to busy with PGA and NFL and gives college hoops the Joe Buckish type treatment.

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 10:21:00 AM  

Thank God. CBS is finally realizing that old, balding white guys don't really represent the viewers that well. Packer has been out of touch with the game for a long time now and Clark Kellogg at least knows what he's talking about.

TONY BLOGS said...
Jul 14, 2008, 10:34:00 AM  

Good riddance Pack. Raftery would have been a better choice.

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 10:37:00 AM  

I like Special K but he makes up words at a Bilas-ian level.

That picture is great, is Billy practicing for the opera?

GMoney said...
Jul 14, 2008, 10:47:00 AM  

CBS actually got rid of Billy the Grump????? Somebody pinch me, I must be dreaming.

As far as Clark Kellogg goes, well, I think that one thing is for sure, and that's he can't be any worse than Oscar...er....I mean Billy the Grouch.

jfein said...
Jul 14, 2008, 11:56:00 AM  

FOX and Tim McCarver need to part also.

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 12:35:00 PM  

Holy shit, I think the blogosphere made a huge difference on this one...if the blogosphere were big say 4 years ago, Clark would have been in his 5th year as color guy.

As for Nantz and Clark...I think Nantz has to get this off his plate. He only does it for like 7 weeks during the year anyway. Now's a time where Gus Johnson can get the bump he truly deserves.

steve said...
Jul 14, 2008, 12:39:00 PM  

Here's to hoping that Gus starts getting more and more games in the tournament and can eventually take over that lead role. The guy is not your typical announcer but is there any guy in the business that can make a fan at home on his couch feel like he's got a front row seat to the excitement better than him?

Jul 14, 2008, 12:41:00 PM  

Clark Kellogg?


Well, he's better than Billy, but still.....



On a related note AA: Mark this Packer exit on your blog as an historic anniversary.

ssreporters said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:00:00 PM  

His game is definitely over.

Stylist Mick said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:16:00 PM  

I have mixed feelings about this announcement.

On one hand, I agree that Billy Packer had become a pain in the butt. On the other, I wish that he had been allowed to retire on his own rather than, in effect, being fired. He has deserved that privilege after 34 years at NBC/CBS.

Also, this is reminiscent of CBS' canning of Dan Rather in 2004. Although it is true than Rather was involved in a document-forging scandal with President Bush, Bernard Goldberg has pointed out that CBS had wanted Rather out anyway because of his age. Was age a factor here? I know that Clark Kellogg is much younger than Packer.

Good luck, Clark.

Desmond said...
Jul 14, 2008, 1:58:00 PM  

It's a sad day here in ACC Land. The end of an era. He will be missed.

Jerry said...
Jul 14, 2008, 2:45:00 PM  

Hopefully Dukie V follows him shortly

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 3:01:00 PM  

Dicky V royaly gets on my nerves with his sctick, but at least he is passionate about the game he covers. It's hard to say the same about Packer.

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 3:40:00 PM  

Maybe he'll bring back the weekly "Putt-Putt Tournament" broadcasts on Sunday's now to fill the time.

SERIOUSLY...this ain't over until we in ACCTVLand know what his status is with Raycom.

Sam Walker said...
Jul 14, 2008, 3:46:00 PM  

There's a really funny video cartoon about Billy Packer that I saw over at FrostedSports.tv. Here's the link:

http://frostedsports.tv/?p=25

Definitely a lot of laughs, especially after this news today.

Deluge said...
Jul 14, 2008, 3:56:00 PM  

My entry name in a recent tourney was "BillyPackerMustDie," so, also because I didn't have to use my AK, today was a good day. The guy's analysis consisted of pretending to read the minds of players and coaches by telling us, "Oooh, and right now, he's saying, 'I should have dribbled towards the middle instead,'" and garbage like that. He was useless at best and normally unbearable. Good riddance. My only regret is the MSM sucking up to him by arguing how all of us, especially the younger generations, are forgetting how good he was (while pointing out he didn't exude happiness). No, sorry, ESPN and others, he sucked. You know, kind of like 99% of your network's personalities suck.

Anonymous said...
Jul 14, 2008, 5:38:00 PM  

He'll be picked up by ESPN in 5...4...3...2..1.

Morgan Wick said...
Jul 14, 2008, 11:28:00 PM  

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