SIX-TIME EMMY AWARD-WINNER JOE BUCK NAMED HOST OF FOX NFL SUNDAY & THE OT
Joins Bradshaw, Long & Johnson As America's Most-Watched Pregame Show Takes To the Road; Continues Lead NFL & MLB on FOX Play-by-Play Roles Veteran Curt Menefee to Host Halftime & Postgame Coverage
New York, NY - A six-time Emmy Award-winner for his outstanding play-by-play work, Joe Buck has been named host of FOX NFL SUNDAY, America's most-watched and multi-Emmy Award-winning NFL pregame show and THE OT, the network's postgame show on doubleheader weekends. The announcement was made today by David Hill, Chairman of the FOX Sports Television Group and the Executive Producer of FOX Sports.
Buck joins Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, Jimmy Johnson, Pam Oliver, insider Jay Glazer and comedian Frank Caliendo this season, beginning with the 2006 premiere on Sunday, September 10 at Noon ET/9:00 AM PT. Buck also continues as FOX Sports' lead NFL and MLB play-by-play voice with analysts Troy Aikman and Tim McCarver, respectively. This is the first time in sports television history that a broadcaster hosts an NFL pregame show while simultaneously handling play-by-play duties.
"We considered a number of superb candidates for this role, who each would have brought something special to the show, but once we thought about this fascinating scenario featuring Joe, we knew this was the right thing to do," said Hill. "The success of FOX NFL SUNDAY has always been based on chemistry, and Joe, while still relatively young, has a maturity that belies his age and a clever, contemporary style that will add a fresh, exciting energy to the program. The only consistent thing about television is change, and I expect the interaction between Joe, Terry, Howie and Jimmy to give FOX NFL SUNDAY and THE OT new and different dynamics."
In addition to the appointment of Buck, Hill has also tabbed veteran NFL on FOX broadcaster Curt Menefee to host FOX NFL SUNDAY's halftime and postgame coverage. Menefee is also set to host three pregame shows in October when Buck switches gears to call FOX Sports' coverage of Major League Baseball's postseason.
"Curt is a consummate pro whose smooth, affable style fits in perfectly with the FOX NFL SUNDAY team," added Hill. "I couldn't be more pleased with these two talented additions."
Another major change coming this season is that FOX NFL SUNDAY, which for 12 years has called Los Angeles home, takes to the road most weeks in a brand new, state-of-the-art traveling set. The 2006 FOX NFL SUNDAY road show opens in Jacksonville on Sept. 10 as Terrell Owens makes his long-anticipated Dallas Cowboys debut against the perennially tough Jaguars. Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia is the site Week 2 for a classic NFC East battle between the New York Giants and the hometown Eagles. Then it's on to Seattle Week 3 as the Giants visit the defending NFC Champion Seahawks. The rest of the 2006 FOX NFL SUNDAY road show schedule will be announced at a later date.
"As thrilled as I am about Joe and Curt, I am just as excited to take the FOX NFL SUNDAY on the road this season," Hill added. "Some of our best shows have originated from big game sites. The guys naturally feed off the crowd's energy and passion, and that enthusiasm gets passed directly on to the viewer at home."
Buck has earned the distinction as one of sports' premier play-by-play broadcasters, as evidenced by his six Emmy Award wins in 1999 and 2001-2005. In 2002, he became the first play-by-play announcer to handle lead MLB and NFL coverage in the same year since Al Michaels (ABC) in 1995. Buck's call of the 2004 World Series and Super Bowl XXXIX in February 2005 made him the youngest announcer (35) to ever to call a Super Bowl, and the first play-by-play announcer to call the World Series and Super Bowl in the same season since Michaels called the 1987 Fall Classic and Super Bowl XXII in January 1988. In addition, he has called eight World Series, including the Subway Series between the Yankees and Mets, back-to-back seven gamers in 2001 and 2002, and the Red Sox' curse-breaking sweep in 2005, not to mention the two classic seven game ALCS between the Red Sox and Yankees in 2003 and 2004.
Joe is the son of late broadcasting legend Jack Buck, who called Super Bowl IV alongside fellow legend Pat Summerall in 1970. It was the late Buck's only network television Super Bowl assignment, but it makes Joe and Jack the first father and son to ever call the Super Bowl on network television.
Buck joined FOX Sports in 1994, and along with analyst Tim Green, formed one of the NFL on FOX's six original NFL broadcast teams. Just 25 years old in '94, Buck was the youngest network announcer to call a full slate of NFL games. The two worked together for four seasons.
In 1996, at age 27, he became the youngest play-by-play announcer to call the World Series since the legendary Vin Scully (25) sat behind the mike during the 1953 Fall Classic. Buck's impressive MLB on FOX resume already includes the 1996, 1998, 2000 - 2005 World Series; the 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003-05 American League Championship Series; the 1996, 1998, 2000 and 2002 National League Championship Series; the 1997, 1999, 2001-06 All-Star Games; and the Cubs-Cardinals game on Sept. 8, 1998, when Mark McGwire hit his historic 62nd home run and set what was then a new single season home run record.
Buck has been a radio and television announcer for the St. Louis Cardinals since 1991. His broadcasting career began in 1989, while he was an undergraduate at Indiana University. That year he called play-by-play for the Louisville Redbirds and was a reporter for ESPN's coverage of the Triple-A All-Star Game. In addition to his current broadcasting work for FOX Sports, Buck also contributes occasional columns to The Sporting News.
Menefee began his career at FOX Sports in 1997 as a sideline reporter, and later moved to the game booth to call play-by-play for NFL and NFL Europe League games on FOX Sports and FSN. His NFL analyst partner last season was JC Pearson.
Through his work at WNYW FOX5 and MSG in New York, Menefee established himself as one of the Big Apple's most popular sportscasters, and was commended by critics for his upbeat delivery and entertaining approach.
Prior to WNYW, Menefee worked at KTVT-TV in Dallas where he was the sports director and weeknight sports anchor. He also hosted a daily two-hour show on The Ticket sports radio in Dallas. Prior to his arrival in Dallas, Menefee anchored sports for WTLV-TV (NBC) in Jacksonville, and his resume also includes a live two-hour daily sportscast on Sports News Network, a national sports cable program, as well as sports anchor and reporter at WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, WI and WOI-TV (ABC) in Des Moines.
Menefee has received several awards for his sports anchoring and reporting, including the Associated Press Award for Best Sports Reporter in New York and four Katie Awards (the Texas equivalent of an Emmy) for Best Sportscast and Best Sports Special.