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Sports media notebook: Toby Rowland to make OU football debut Saturday

by Mel Bracht Published: April 14, 2011

Toby Rowland will make his OU football play-by-play debut with the Spring Game at 2 p.m. Saturday, starting with a tribute to his predecessor, Bob Barry Sr.

Chris Plank will handle the sideline role, and will interview players and coaches during the game. A permanent replacement for Rowland on the sidelines has not been named. Merv Johnson is back as analyst.

“It's a lot more laid back than a regular game and I think it's more of an educational opportunity for all of us,” Rowland said. “It's really an opportunity for coach Merv to do what he does best. He has seen every practice all spring and he can educate us on the all the new guys and the position battles.”

Rowland said he plans to cut back on his other media duties. Beginning in June, he will trim his KREF-AM 1400 morning show a half hour to 6 to 9 a.m. After his five-year contract with KWTV-9 expires in August, he plans to go part time at the station.

Thunder pregame show expanded

Fox Sports Oklahoma's “Thunder Live” pregame show will be expanded to an hour and will air from a set outside the arena for all home first-round playoff games, except potential ABC broadcasts. Dana Larson will host the pregame show, and TV game announcers Brian Davis, Grant Long and Kelly Crull and radio announcer Matt Pinto will be part of the broadcast.

FSOK will televise all the first-round games against Denver (except potential games on ABC), but is prohibited from airing the remaining rounds. Those games will be nationally televised on TNT, ESPN and ABC.

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