Among the big names interested in the job were Kansas City Chiefs radio voice Mitch Holthus, whom sources said was offered the job, and Washington Nationals TV announcer Bob Carpenter. In an email, Holthus complimented the Sooners on “a great hire. This is a hire for an entire generation of Sooner fans.”
Carpenter, a Tulsa resident who handles Sooners men’s basketball telecasts, said he was not contacted by OU officials.
Among other candidates were Nebraska play-by-play announcer Greg Sharpe, OU baseball announcer Chuck Kelly and OU women’s basketball announcer Brian Brinkley.
Rowland’s versatility was an asset as OU develops plans to launch its own television network. Rowland is expected to have a role with the network.
“We know the tremendous work ethic he will expend carrying out the play-by-play duties,” OU athletic director Joe Castiglione said. “Outside our department, it has been encouraging to watch his expanding role in the marketplace. He is a talented broadcaster with a creative flare, and he has flourished in multiple media settings.” Rowland said he is undecided about continuing to work for KWTV-9 and KREF. His five-year contract with KWTV expires in August.
“I need to talk to both of them and my wife and then decide,” he said. “They have been both great to me.”