ESPN has, like, gone to the 'Max'Hey, dude, it's, like...


August 06, 1993|By RAY FRAGER

ESPN has, like, gone to the 'Max'

Hey, dude, it's, like, you know, really, really cool.

It's, like, there's this show, you know, that comes on ESPN weekdays at 4 p.m. And it's not, like, like all that other stuff on ESPN, you know. No baseballs or basketballs or footballs or that junk they make us do in gym class. No, dude, old Mr. Gordon would freak if we did these sports, man.

There's this guy who comes on, you know, and he must be cool 'cause he wears his cap backward just like you and me.

And everything and everybody go really, really fast and there's all this cool music like from "Headbangers' Ball" or something and sometimes the cars or the boats or the surfers crash and the cool guy doesn't even say whether anybody got hurt or not and that must be 'cause they probably did and that makes it even more cool 'cause if this show was for, like, our parents, they'd probably be worried.

But, it's like, you know, these guys knew it was dangerous, you know?

So, man, the show is called "Max Out," and I know that's a really dorky name, like some guy in a three-piece suit was trying to be cool or something. But, you know, it might make me watch something other than MTV for, like, 30 minutes or something.

Rolling along

At 4:30 p.m. weekdays, ESPN is showing something called the World Roller Hockey League. As it turns out, it's a small world after all.

The games are played at Disney World in Orlando, Fla. The other day, it was the Aztecs and the Express. Ex-New York Ranger Ron Duguay was flitting around on in-line skates. The analyst was named Lisa Feinberg. There was little defense, and it was hard to see the puck when someone took a shot.

All in all, it made me nostalgic for Australian Rules Football.

Monday, Monday

ESPN will debut "NFL Prime Monday," a 90-minute program, on Sept. 6 at 7:30 p.m., replacing the matchup show that had featured Ron Jaworski and Allie Sherman finding something to argue about.

Mike Tirico is the host, joined by ESPN colleagues Joe Theismann, Craig James and Chris Mortensen. Jaworski remains, and former MTV personality "Downtown" Julie Brown also will be featured. Brown most likely will fill the Sherman role, debating Jaworski on the best manner in which to attack a nickel package from the four-receiver set.

Or maybe she'll be host of a Monday night dance party.

In non-ESPN news

Home Team Sports has added former "NFL Today" personality Irv Cross to "Toyota Redskins Report" (Thursdays, 7:30 p.m., beginning Sept. 9). The program, which also features Redskins assistant general manager Bobby Mitchell, previews each week's game while participants jump with excitement over their Japanese cars. . . . James Brown will be prime-time studio host for USA Network's coverage of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, which begins Aug. 30. . . . On Sunday, CBS' Greg Gumbel and Terry Bradshaw get out of the studio and work the NFL preseason game between the Lions and Cowboys from London (12:30 p.m., channels 11, 9).

Share and share alike

Stan "The Fan" Charles' talk show on WCBM (680 AM) nearly doubled its share of the audience from a year ago in the spring ratings. In 1992, Charles' "Sports Exchange" drew shares of 2.7, 2.8 and 3.5 during each of its hours from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. This spring, it drew 5.0, 5.4 and 7.7. Still, Charles gets about half of the share drawn by Orioles flagship WBAL (1090 AM) during those hours, at least part of which often includes game or post-game coverage. . . . During the college football season, HTS will carry 19 coaches' shows, each one guaranteed to have a host speaking about Gridiron U.'s fine student-ath-a-letes. "That's right, Coach. Bobby Joe Beandip not only runs a minus-2.5-second 40, but he also attended several of his classes last week."

Paired up

CBS and NBC have named their NFL announcing pairings. The notable absence is analyst Joe Namath, dropped by NBC. No big loss. . . . The first area cable system to add ESPN2 is Jones of Anne Arundel County. The service launches Oct. 1. . . . Last week's top sports program in the national Nielsen ratings was an NFL preseason game on NBC with a 6.1 rating and 19 share. Baltimore may want a football team, but we know better than to put a preseason game No. 1. An Orioles game on Channel 2 (19.0/30) and "George Michael's Sports Machine" on Channel 13 (6.1/17) rated higher here. Ratings measure the percentage of television households watching a program. Shares measure the percentage among homes where television is in use. A dram is a measure of apothecaries' weight equal to 60 grains or 3.89 grams.

Out of Bullets

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