Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Wisconsin TV, Radio Blitz Super Bowl

Packers fans waiting at team hotel
While fans spent the bye week before the Super Bowl stocking up on beverages and snacks, a small group of professionals prepared to invade Dallas.

No, not the Green Bay Packers. Well, not just the Packers.

According to Duane Dudek at jsonline.com, Wisconsin broadcasters spent the past week planning ways to cover the biggest story that nobody planned for.

Dudek writes, "If you thought local TV newscasts ramped up their Packers coverage after the team's victory in the NFC championship game, you ain't seen nothin' yet. So many local TV and radio hosts, reporters, photojournalists, producers and technicians will be in Arlington for Sunday's Super Bowl you could open a Wolski's and hold a fish fry.

WTMJ-TV (Channel 4) and WTMJ-AM (620) lead the pack with a combined crew of more than 20, including "Daybreak" host Vince Vitrano, anchor Mike Jacobs, the entire sports team, morning and afternoon radio hosts Gene Mueller and John Mercure, and sports talk host Bill Michaels.

WITI-TV (Channel 6) is sending 16 people. Last week, sports director Tom Pipines reported from the home of the Pittsburgh Steelers - and Packers coach Mike McCarthy - came home for one day and then headed to Dallas. He will be joined by anchors Ted Perry and Mary Stoker Smith, morning news and "Real Milwaukee" host Nicole Koglin and sports reporter Tim Van Vooren.

"We're moving a big part of the newsroom to Dallas," said WITI news director Jim Lemon. "It's not that different than the way we operate here."

While love of and interest in the Packers is a level playing field, these stations may have a possible competitive advantage: WITI is an affiliate of Fox, which is carrying the game, and WTMJ-AM and WTMJ-TV are the flagship stations of the Packers radio and TV networks.

The game will be broadcast on WTMJ-AM by Packer announcers Wayne Larrivee and Larry McCarren, pre-empting local Westwood One coverage on WAUK-AM (540). The affiliation also allows WTMJ-TV to label itself as the "official" Packers station.

But WISN-TV (Channel 12), which is sending 12 people, has a unique affiliation, too, with the Hearst Television Inc. sister station in Pittsburgh.

"We (support) opposing teams, but we're all on one team" and will share content and resources, said WISN-TV news director Lori Waldon."

Read more here.

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