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October 3, 2015

Fox preseason football flops big-time

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 30th 2009 12:08PM
buck_aikman_foxYou wouldn't know that Fox football was ready for prime time based on the lame broadcast of the Tampa Bay Buccaneer-Miami Dolphin game the other night. The number one team in the booth -- Joe Buck and Troy Aikman -- seemed ill-prepared for the game. It was embarrassing to watch them call the game.

Listen, I know it's only pre-season and everyone -- including the networks -- are working out the kinks, but I expect Buck and Aikman to be on top of their game. They usually are, so I guess I was surprised by the sloppy effort.

The NFL season just around the corner and if you're a big-time fan like I am, you can't wait for the whistle to blow and the pads to start popping. However, while we may be ready for the real thing, the pre-season games have been -- generally speaking -- awful. You can't expect a lot for the pre-season, especially on the field with guys fighting for jobs, but for goodness sake, I do expect broadcasters like Fox's Buck and Aikman to not just skate through a broadcast.

At one point in the first half, Troy was pointing out the blanket coverage in the Buc's defensive backfield... using the names of Dolphin players to identify the defender. Umm, isn't that why they have spotters, to get the names right? And he never corrected the mistake. He just kept on babbling. I realize he's a former quarterback and suffered many concussions, but he's well now and supposed to be the top analyst on the network.

What was even worse was the 45-minute delay in the middle of the game because of the threat of lightning strikes. I don't blame Fox for the weather, but the production crew had to know that it was possible because they were in Tampa where is rains constantly in the summer. You just know that the NFL officials -- and the network -- were warned that a lightning delay was possible.

Fox should have had something prepared to fill the time. Instead of a "rain delay" plan, Buck and Aikman painfully vamped for a while, before cutting to Pam Oliver who dragged players out of the locker room to "tap dance." Seriously, that's what she called the inane chatter in which they were engaged.

Okay, maybe I'm taking this too seriously. It is only pre-season. The games don't count. It's just a warm up for the season. But on a Thursday night in prime time, even during the summer, Fox should do better.

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As a massive football fan - our Harmony remote defaults the DTV to NFL-N - I must say it's HILARIOUS to read that Joe Buck and Aikman are Fox's #1 team. The two are chuckleheads and while aikman must know something about football neither one can convey anything but their milquetoast views and provide zero insight into the game. for Buck a deep comment is to talk about a conversation he had with a star player; for Aikman a deep comment is along the lines of, "I think they need to score here, Joe."

The two of them set up simply, sloppy themes for every game and even if their story isn't panning out (TO is a demon, Ray Lewis is ferocious in the middle, McNabb's on the hotseat) they'll keep pounding it. The player at the heart of their broadcast's theme could leave with an injury and they'll still talk about it.

Seriously, listening to them is preferable to sitting through a lecture on the creation of soy products in a small town outside of Bangkok but beyond that...yeah they're painfully inept.

August 30 2009 at 5:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to YouFaceTheTick's comment

I totally agree. I had the sense from the beginning of the broadcast that Joe Buck just didn't want to be there. He seemed like he was just waiting for the game to end so he could go home. And Troy, who I thought was fine at the start of the game, seemed to quit trying when Joe never upped his game. I usually like this team, but this was disappointing and a bit eye-opening.

August 30 2009 at 4:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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