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Bush League Fox

Do the owners of professional sports leagues realize what they're getting when they sign their contracts with Fox, or are they simply blinded by the gold and diamonds being dangled by quizillionaire owner Rupert Murdoch?

Fox-televised sporting events are, without a single exception, bush league. Take its baseball coverage, which was anchored by the mannequinesque Jeannie Zelasko and the slightly less lifelike Kevin Kennedy. Zelasko personifies the Fox Sports Net cable channel -- she's amateurish, uninformative, and one of the last ones left after numerous crash-and-burn attempts to turn it into a legitimate competitor for ESPN.

Or take its NFL coverage, presided over by the bland talking head of James Brown and starring Cement Head himself, Terry Bradshaw.

From ludicrous sound effects and graphics (glowing hockey pucks!) to a collection of sound-alike announcers who clearly haven't had an original thought in their head in years (yes, Brian Baldinger, I include you), Fox is an embarrassment to sports broadcasting. Is there bad broadcasting everywhere? Sure. But all you have to do is look over to ESPN to see that you can do the job right -- ESPN did it with its SportsCenter coverage from the World Series, does it every Sunday on its Sunday NFL Countdown, and presumably will even bring a veneer of decency to the NBA, whose new season is slouching toward us even now.

Fox has had every opportunity to grow beyond the "Fox Attitude" it forced upon us a decade ago. It hasn't, presumably because it's not interested in being anything but amateurish and embarrassing.


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