Editing a two-hour interview with Barry Switzer into a 30-minute show proved to be quite a challenge for producers of Fox Sports Southwest's new “Icons of Coaching” series, hosted by former Texas Rangers announcer Dave Barnett.
“It was probably the toughest to edit,” Barnett said.
Barnett said the segment, which next airs at 5 p.m. Thursday on Fox Sports Oklahoma and will be repeated several times, dispelled some of the tales he had heard about Switzer, the former Oklahoma and Dallas Cowboys coach.
He said he had heard that Switzer had telephoned recruits at halftime of OU-Texas games when the Sooners were leading to make sure they were watching. He said Switzer denied that occurred.
“It turned out there was only one of those calls,” Barnett said. “It was never from the Texas game. It was from Colorado. It was calling Billy Sims on the job at a gas station he was working at Hooks (Texas).”
As far as his Cowboys tenure, Barnett said Switzer was one of the few supporters for Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, in contrast to former Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson, whose interview will air in January.
Barnett said he got the idea for the series from broadcasting college football games for ESPN.
“We would spend time with coaches on Friday afternoons and the stuff we would get into was way more interesting and involved than anything I could work into a game broadcast,” Barnett said.
The 30-minute shows, which are produced by Robert Steinfeld, include segments with Mack Brown, Larry Brown, Kim Mulkey, Bela Karolyi, Tommy Lasorda, Mike Krzyzewski, Lenny Wilkens and a tribute to John Wooden.
Barnett said he is hoping to return to baseball announcing next season, and his agent is investigating a few opportunities. His final telecast with the Rangers on June 18, 2012, included him delivering a string of gibberish. The Rangers sent him to several doctors for some kind of explanation, and then decided against bringing him back this past season.
“What was finally termed after months of testing, a medical anomaly, maybe 15 seconds on the air that doctors thought could have been a number of different things,” he said. “I was checked for all of them. They all turned out to be negative.”
*The Thunder is making national TV appearances the next two nights. Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy and reporter J.A. Adande will call the Thunder-L.A. Clippers game at 9:30 p.m. Wednesday for ESPN. The game also will air on FSOK (Brian Davis, Grant Long and reporter Lesley McCaslin). TNT will have an exclusive telecast of the Thunder-Golden State game at 9:30 p.m. Thursday. Kevin Harlan, Reggie Miller and reporter Craig Sager are working the game.
*ESPN's new Wednesday “NBA Countdown team” of Doris Burke, Avery Johnson and Jalen Rose will debut at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday.