Joe Morgan and the 25 Sports Talking Heads We Love To Hate

Drake Oz@drakeozbrSenior Writer IINovember 9, 2010

Joe Morgan and the 25 Sports Talking Heads We Love To Hate

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    Andy Lyons/Getty Images

    Joe Morgan will no longer be a part of our Sunday nights.

    ESPN has announced that the company is splitting up the famous Sunday Night Baseball duo of Morgan and Jon Miller after a 21-year run.

    But it's actually pretty impressive that Morgan lasted as long as he did in the ESPN announce booth.

    He's long been one of the most criticized announcers in sports and seems to have forced people to forget about his Hall of Fame playing career.

    But of course, he isn't the only announcer who is loathed by the sports community.

    Let's take a look at the 25 most maligned announcers in all of sports.

25. Doug Gottlieb

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    One thing about sports that I don't really support is having guys do commentary or interviews on sports that they didn't even play.

    Exhibit A: Doug Gottlieb.

    The guy played collegiate basketball and never made it to the NBA, which means he really shouldn't even be commenting on professional basketball.

    So why would I ever care what the hell has to say about the NFL

    Apparently I'm not the only one who thinks like that, because Jim Mora certainly doesn't give a rat's a*s either.

24. John Sterling

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    John Sterling has long been known as "the voice of the New York Yankees."

    Well, he may be loved by plenty of people there, but the guy really needs to get his act together.

    Example: he once used his patented "It is high!...It is far!" home run call four times in a game before one was actually hit. 

    Dude, are you watching the game or what?

23. Bryant Gumbel

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    Bryant Gumbel is the host of the show "Real Sports" on HBO, so naturally you would assume he would actually focus on sports.

    But no, Gumbel often goes off on freakin' politics. Politics!

    If I wanted to hear about the judicial, legislative or executive branches, I would go to a town hall meeting or pick up a civics book, not watch a sports show.

    So thank you, Gumbel, for officially interspersing one of my favorite things (sports) with something I despite (political commentary).

    Add that to his play-by-play days on the first NFL Network "Thursday Night Football" broadcasts that ranks as the worst hiring in sports broadcasting history and you have a lock for this list.

22. Matt Millen

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    Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

    Matt Millen almost singlehandedly destroyed the Detroit Lions franchise, so naturally he'd be one hell of an ESPN NFL analyst, right?

    Seriously, the guy has about as much business analyzing football as I do running the country.

    Why on Earth do people keep hiring this guy even though he's proven to have virtually no success anywhere he's worked?

21. Emmitt Smith

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    Want proof positive that not all former professional athletes have careers as an analyst once their playing days are over?

    Look no further than Emmitt Smith.

    When Smith joined ESPN, I didn't even begin to question his skills as an analyst--it was clear he had no business doing that--I actually began to question his ability to speak the English language properly.

    The guy truly did fumble over his words like it was nobody's business.

20. Craig James

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    Craig James just hasn't been able to avoid scandal for what seems like an eternity.

    From his time at SMU to his role in getting Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach fired, James already had good reason to take his crediblity, wipe it on a piece of a toilet paper and flush it down the toilet.

    But since then, it's gotten even worse.

    He's shown a complete disdain for any non-automatic qualifying football schools like Boise State, who he voted as the No. 7 team in the nation after last bowl season.

    That's an absolute joke. Someone has to strip this man of his power.

19. Tony Kornheiser

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    My vote for the second worst decision in the history of Monday Night Football was putting Tony Kornheiser in the announce booth.

    Just because the guy makes some funny comments on ESPN's Pardon the Interception every once in awhile, it doesn't mean that he's going to work on Monday's biggest show.

    Unlike his PTI co-host Michael Wilbon, who at least makes some serious arguments throughout the show, Kornheiser typically confuses his TV show with a stand-up routine.

    Plus, he rips on ESPN anchor Hannah Storm. What's up with that?

18. Woody Paige

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    Woody Paige is often a guest on ESPN's Around the Horn, and he's known for his personal blackboard that features tons of outlandish quotes.

    Paige is often a topic of debate among my friends, and some of them actually think he's a funny guy.

    Well, agree to disagree.

    He's just so ridiculously bizarre that it's hard for some people to take what he says seriously, even when it makes sense.

17. Dan Fouts

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    Dan Fouts wasn't that bad as a color commentator, but the guy was clueless as a play-by-play announcer.

    I think we can sum up his entire announcing career with this gem from October 2008 though:

    "It's kind of a combination if you add Wes Welker to that d**k."

    I can't even begin to fathom what the hell Fouts was actually trying to say, but I definitely don't think the parents watching that game appreciate him making sexual innuendos in front of all the little kiddies

16. Joe Morgan

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    Joe Morgan constantly has this sense that he is the ultimate authority on the game of baseball, that pretty much whatever he says about the sport goes.

    He also has a knack for pointing out the blatantly obvious stuff about baseball that anyone above the age of six could have easily explained to you.

    For example, check out his explanation of a walk.

    Wasn't that just a phenomenal way of explaining the simplest of things?

15. Gary Danielson (and Verne Lundquist)

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    As a former SEC student, I've put up with Gary Danielson about as much as anybody has recently, so let me break down one of the reasons why people hate the guy so much.

    A few weeks when Auburn played LSU in a huge SEC showdown, it took less than five minutes until Danielson brought up former Florida quarterback Tim Tebow.

    He and Verne Lundquist must have reserved firm spots on Tebow's jock. They literally think that Tebow is the second coming of the Messiah himself.

    Dude, it's Auburn and LSU that are playing. Tebow's in the NFL.

    It's time to move on. 

14. Mike Patrick

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    In 2007, Mike Patrick was in the announce booth for a college football game between Alabama and Georgia that went into overtime.

    Instead of, you know, talking about the actual game--which ended on the next play--Patrick oddly started asking his broadcast partner about Britney Spears.


    That was easily one of the craziest things I've seen from an announcer.

13. Lee Corso

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    I'm not not a big fan of putting average coaches in the announce booth and then acting like they're the some kind of expert on the sport.

    And that's exactly what Lee Corso is.

    It's not like he's some great coach who we should all pay attention to.

    Corso's just some random analyst who's known because of his incredibly stupid antics on College Gameday.

    I mean, if he never put on any type of mascot headgear, he probably would have been fired years ago.

12. Billy Packer

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    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Leave it to college basketball's Billy Packer to say whatever he wants.

    During the broadcast of a Villanova-Georgetown game in 1996, Packer referred to Hoyas point guard Allen Iverson as a "tough monkey."

    He also issued a public apology after an incident in 2000 in which he didn't take so kindly to being asked by two Duke female students to show his press pass.

    Packer allegedly told the students, ""Since when do we let women control who gets into a men's basketball game? Why don't you go find a women's game to let people into?"

    He also ripped on George Mason in the Final Four of the 2006 NCAA Tournament because he didn't think the team should have been there.

    And he wonders why people think he's such a tool.

11. Brent Musberger

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    Brent Musberger has an unsafe obsession with the Big Ten conference.

    It's not as bad as Lou Holtz with Notre Dame, but Musberger shows a clear bias toward the Big Ten when broadcasting football games.

    Yet somehow Musberger still manages to alienate Big Ten fans who think that he shows a little too much love for their rival in conference games.

    Congratulations, Brent. You've even managed to piss off the few fans who like you.

    Oh yeah, Musberger's also spawned a drinking game among college football fans.

10. Joe Buck

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    I'm not saying that Joe Buck only has a job in broadcasting because of his father, but Joe Buck only has a job in broadcasting because of his father.

    That's the only possible explanation for why Buck is an announcer for MLB and NFL games, and why this should ever happen.

    I mean, this guy once admitted that he rarely even watches sports. 

    Then, what in God's name are you doing announcing games? That's like having a chef perform open heart surgery.

9. Chris Berman

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    Plain and simple, Chris Berman is an annoying announcer.

    His "back...back...back" and "he could go all the way" lines border on torture for me, as do those little sounds he makes when a running back busts through the line of scrimmage.

    Berman just seems to have a problem with differentiating between showing too much excitement and showing interest in his job.

    It's certainly a fine line, and Berman is so far past it that the line is a dot to him.

8. Tim McCarver

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    As with a lot of the guys on the list, there's a website dedicated to the idiotic things that come out of Tim McCarver's mouth.

    He's one of those baseball announcers that will take a minute point and turn it into a 25-page thesis paper in the form of an oral presentation.

    McCarver's also known to point out things about the sport that are just so absurdly stupid you don't even know how to react.

    Like this dandy on a broadcast from July 8th, 2006: "If you lead off and you play every day, you're guaranteed to bat with the bases empty at least 162 times."

    I'll leave you with that.

7. John Madden

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    What is there to say about John Madden?

    He shows an undying love for Brett Favre that is unparalleled by any other announcer-athlete duo in sports, he has a thing for bootlegs , he draws inappropriate things on the telestrator and he states the obvious more than I thought was humanly possible.

    If that's not enough reasons to hate him, the guy doesn't even do commentary on a video game that bears his likeness. 

    Madden is a clown.

6. Dennis Miller

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    Remember when I said how politics and sports shows don't mix?

    Well, just like Bryant Gumbel, Dennis Miller should have never been put in the announce booth for Monday Night Football.

    I shouldn't even have to explain this one, but hear are 14 reasons why so many sports fans hate Miller.

    And another 14.

5. Lou Holtz

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    Lou Holtz clearly never attended journalism school because the guy shows more bias in his reporting than just about anyone in the history of sports.

    Seriously, has Holtz ever picked against Notre Dame?

    It doesn't matter who the hell the Fighting Irish are playing, Holtz always picks them to win.

    They could literally be playing against the Pittsburgh Steelers, and Holtz would somehow find a way to justify his pick. 

4. Dick Vitale

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    I'll die a happy man if I never have to listen to two certain sports phrases for the rest of my life.

    They are as follows: "It's awesome, baby!" and "diaper dandy."

    Ugh, I cannot stand hearing either of those during college basketball season.

    I mean, I understand Dick Vitale is a passionate and excited guy, but there's a certain point where he borders on obnoxiousness, like when he's talking about anything that involves Duke or "Coach K."

3. Jim Rome

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    You could certainly make a case that Jim Rose is the most brash sports TV show host ever.

    If he weren't on ESPN, God only knows what kind of filth would spew from his mouth.

    There's just something so innately arrogant about the dude that makes you want to punch him in the face the moment he begins to speak.

    Just take a look at the video, and you'll see what I mean.

2. Stephen A. Smith

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    If you're unsure what the word overreaction means, just check out this audio of Stephen A. Smith on his radio show.

    The guy is just so anxious, antsy, enthusiastic, restless and intense all the time.

    Smith is wound tighter than a yo-yo, and he tends to visit the bounds of normal social behavior, which he crosses at least nine out of ten times.

    Seriously, dude. Just chill out.

1. Skip Bayless

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    You could probably write a book on the number of high-profile athletes that Skip Bayless hates, which is pretty funny considering that he probably can't even spell athlete.

    Bayless has relentlessly criticized some of the greatest athletes the world has ever seen, like Peyton Manning, Michael Phelps and even Tiger Woods.

    But nothing compares to his hatred for LeBron James, who Bayless has blasted for anything and everything since he stepped foot in the NBA.

    Dude, did James steal your girlfriend or something as a kid? Get over it