ABC's Jackson set for his final college roundup

Media Watch

August 28, 1998|By Milton Kent

Imagine Keith Jackson in policeman's blues yelling "Whoa, Nellie," to a fleeing suspect or running some posh hotel as its manager. It could have happened. Those were the subjects he considered as a student at Washington State College (now University) in the 1940s.

Neither of those images works, ultimately, because calling college football games on television fits Jackson like a houndstooth hat fit Alabama coach Bear Bryant, snug and square.

Jackson begins his 31st and final season as the voice of college football on ABC Monday night with a prime-time presentation of the Kickoff Classic, pitting Florida State against Texas A&M (Channel 2, 8 p.m.) from the Meadowlands.

The former Marine said yesterday that he doesn't want a farewell tour and wishes he hadn't said anything about retirement, but that likely won't stop fans from pouring out affection for a man who, perhaps more than any other, personifies the sport he calls.

"I get backed into a corner and I'll crumble like anyone else," said Jackson about the expected displays of emotion. "I've had more fun than anybody, and if I've helped people enjoy the game more, then that's great. But a guy who goes out there and blows $1,000 on a television set doesn't tune in to hear me. He wants to watch a football game."

L That may be, but the game has usually been a pleasant bonus.

ABC will also carry the Pigskin Classic with Purdue taking on Southern California on Sunday at 2: 30 p.m. in college football's first weekend of action. Meanwhile, Michigan State will play host to Colorado State in the Black Coaches Association Classic tomorrow at 4 p.m. on ESPN2, and the Frank Solich era begins at Nebraska, when the Cornhuskers are host to Louisiana Tech also at 4 p.m. tomorrow on Home Team Sports in the Eddie Robinson Classic.

Around the dial

ESPN wraps up its NFL preseason schedule with tomorrow's Carolina-Pittsburgh game at 8 p.m., but unlike in previous years, the ESPN kids won't go away for two months, because they have the entire Sunday night cable package to themselves. The Ravens, meanwhile, close their preseason schedule tonight (Channel 13, 7: 30) against the New York Giants, and their television team of Gus Johnson and Brian Baldinger have developed into an interesting listen.

Mark McGwire's assault on the single-season home run record will undoubtedly be the focus of Sunday's Atlanta-St. Louis telecast (ESPN, 8 p.m.), and "SportsCenter" begins a five-part look at the efforts of McGwire, Sammy Sosa, and Ken Griffey on Monday at 6: 30 p.m.

The Little Leaguers will decide their champion tomorrow (Channel 2, 3: 30 p.m.) from Williamsport, Pa., with Jim Palmer doing analysis. Thirty minutes later, the WNBA title might be decided in Game 2 of the league championship series (Channel 11, 4 p.m.)

Jackie Joyner-Kersee sits down with Bob Costas to discuss her miraculous career in track on tomorrow's "Olympic Show" (CNBC, 7 p.m.), but before that, Costas will be the guest in the 1 p.m. hour of today's "Marc Steiner Show" on WJHU (88.1 FM). Sun sports business writer Jon Morgan will discuss the new Ravens stadium in the first hour of the program at noon.

NBC (Channel 11) will have the final two rounds of the U.S. men's Amateur Golf Championships, with the third round airing at 2 p.m. tomorrow, and the final round Sunday at 4 p.m.

CBS (Channel 13) sets the stage for next week's U.S. Open with coverage tomorrow (2 p.m.) of the finals of the women's tennis tournament from Hartford, Conn. USA will begin its daily Open coverage Monday at 11 a.m., with evening telecasts commencing at 7: 30 p.m., and CBS carries late night highlights, starting Monday at 12: 37 a.m.

Pub Date: 8/28/98

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.