George Michael (sportscaster)

George Michael (sportscaster)

George Michael (born March 24, 1939), is a sportscaster best known nationally for his long-running American sports highlights show called "The George Michael Sports Machine". Started as a local show in 1980 called "George Michael's Sports Final" [ [ George Michael official biography at WRC-TV] ] and then nationally syndicated in 1984, [cite web | url= | title=Michael steps down as 'Sports Machine' host, WRC sports director | author=Marty Niland | publisher="The Associated Press" | date=2006-11-16] the nationally broadcast show was distributed for syndication by NBC until it left the air following the March 25, 2007 airing. Michael won a Sports Emmy in 1985 for his work on "The George Michael Sports Machine".

A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Michael anchored the sports desk at WRC-TV (News 4) in Washington DC from 1980 to 2007. Previously he was a WABC-AM disk jockey noted for his boisterous personality and energetic style. Several incidents from his radio stint at WABC in New York City have been chronicled in deejay "Cousin Brucie" Morrow's autobiography. [Bruce Morrow and Laura Baudo, "Cousin Brucie: My Life in Rock 'N' Roll Radio". Beech Tree Books, 1987. (ISBN 0-688-06615-1).] George Michael replaced Morrow at WABC in 1974. Before that he was the popular evening deejay at Philadelphia's WFIL Radio (560 kHz) from 1966 until his move to WABC] . While in New York, he also served for several season as a commentator on New York Islanders telecasts, where he was paired mainly with Tim Ryan.

As a sports broadcaster at WRC, Michael is easily one of the most popular media personalities in the Washington area. Michael gets significant latitude in his programming, employing a bevy of segments some might consider old-fashioned, including his "Tuesday Replays" and "Wednesday Wrestling." He also has devoted extensive coverage to and is considered a significant influence in the popularity of NASCAR, broadcasting interviews with famous drivers such as Dale Earnhardt well before that sport became what it is today. An avid equestrian himself, Michael also broadcasts segments on bull riding and rodeo.

While some Who|date=March 2007 have criticized his interviewing as soft Fact|date=March 2007, Michael's affable personality has endeared him to the curmudgeonliest of local and national sports personalities and landed rare interviews. For example, Michael's team at WRC has been the only local sportscasters allowed to broadcast from inside the Washington Redskins' FedEx Field during the season.

In November 2005, Michael was seriously injured in a horseback riding accident. He broke several ribs and injured his wrists during the equine mishap at his Comus farm in upper Montgomery County, Maryland. Michael resumed his duties in December 2005.

Michael left his role as WRC's daily sports anchor on March 1, 2007 following a dispute with WRC-TV (News 4) over layoffs of his staff. [cite web | url= | title=Farewell to the King | publisher="Washington Examiner" | author= Rick Snider | date=2007-02-27] He continues to host weekend sports panel shows, such as "Full Court Press" and "Redskins Report". "The George Michael Sports Machine" went off the air on March 25, 2007. [cite web | url= | title=George Michael to drop anchor chores, continue weekend sports panel shows | publisher="The Washington Post" | author=John Maynard | date=2006-11-17] [cite web | url= | title=Saying goodbye to George Michael | publisher="The Washington Post" | author=Leonard Shapiro | date=2006-11-21]

References and notes

External links

* [ George Michael radio interview] with Mark Simone on WABC-AM, March 25, 2006
* [ ESPN: Michael steps down as Sports Machine host, November 16, 2006]
* [ Video: George Michael disccused his horse riding accident in 2005]
* Hiring George Michael For WABC
* [ Radio broadcasting stations George Michael worked at]
* [ USA Today article, "Michael's 'Sports Machine' going silent", March 22, 2007]
* [ A heartfelt goodbye George Michael signing off on NBC4 March 1, 2007]

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