Top 10 National Sportscasters

Top 10 National Sportscasters

The top ten least favorite sportscasters list was so “discussion-provoking” that I decided to do a ten best sportscasters list. The one mistake I made on the worst list was not dividing it up into two parts: local sportscasters and national sportscasters.

There were too many omissions.

Even with this list now broken into two installments, there will still be plenty of omissions. So feel free to add in those who you believe were left out in the comments section. And of course, the sportscasters list is broken down as if it were a basketball team format. Basketball being the second best game ever invented.

No broadcast reporters who work for a network owned by a team or a league are eligible for this list, as those people are not journalists. You can’t be a journalist when you report on the very same entity that pays your salary. However, play-by-play and color analysts are eligible.


National sportscasters first team

F Jim Nantz, CBS

When Jim Nantz sat down next to me at the NFL on CBS Media Luncheon in Mid-town Manhattan last week he greeted the table by saying “friends.” Therefore, he said half of his trademark saying “hello friends.” I’m assuming he was addressing Dan Marino, Dan Fouts and Dan Dierdorf (yes, there was an excessive amount of Dans at my table) but I’d like to think I could be considered a friend now.

After all, a stranger is just a friend you haven’t met yet. Later, Nantz told me how he single-handedly saved “One Shining Moment.” Which makes him an American hero!

 F Michelle Beadle, NBC Sports Group

Her NBCSN show just got cancelled due to low ratings. Not her fault; more people watch the emergency test signal than NBCSN. But hey, at least they get more viewers than Crowd Goes Wild on Fox Sports 1. Beadle is clever and hilarious, and if I didn’t hate “entertainment news” so much, I’d actually consider watching her show on Access Hollywood.

C Shannon Sharpe, CBS


I asked Shannon Shape about all the things he’s said, and if he’s caught any backlash.

“I look at it like this, I played the game for 14 years, I had a level of success, and at the end of the day they judged what I did on the field as worthy of going to Canton. A lot of times when you get guys saying ‘well, how long he did he play?’ ‘Was he any good when he played?’ I get none of that,” Sharpe said.

“So when I say something, I have no axe to grind. I don’t need to say something to get on television, I’m already on television. So I’m offering my honest opinion. I’m not one of these guys who’s going to say who’s better Tom Brady or Peyton Manning? And answer I’d like to have both. That’s not what i am. You know exactly where I stand on issues,” Shannon Sharpe continued.

“If he does his job, I’m going to do my job, and everybody is going to be happy. If he doesn’t do his job, I’m going to do my job. One of us is going to be happy, guess which one that’s going to be,” Shannon said.

G Phil Simms, CBS

Phil Simms is quickly becoming one of my favorite NFL talking heads. When he appears on CBS NFL Today, he often has to play the role of antagonist; bubble burster, guy who takes the punch bowl away once the party has started

And with Simms, writing up an interview often includes the phrase “Phil Simms noted with extreme sarcasm.

bill simmons

G Bill Simmons, ESPN

The only “unanimous” first team selection, leading vote getter for the first team. He is the Elvis Presley of sportswriters. Love him or hate him, you have to admit he OWNED NBA Draft night. It was a HORRIBLE Draft, talent wise, you had someone nobody had heard of until a week before going #1 overall and a total joke, Cody Zeller, going #4 overall. Yet Simmons made it like Christmas Night.

National sportscasters second team

F Charles Barkley, TNT

F Al Michaels, NBC

C Chris Fowler, ESPN

Kenny “The Jet” Smith, TNT

G Cris Collinsworth, NBC

 Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports, an affiliate of Fox Sports. An analyst for 95.7 The Fan and 1620 The Zone, he also writes for Chicago Now. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks) and Facebook

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Filed under: ABC, CBS, ESPN, NBC

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