Brendan Wiese is revved up about what he says will be the top assignment in his 15 years as a sportscaster.
Wiese, the sports director at KTRS (550 AM), will be filling in for Mike Kelly as the play-by-play announcer on the Tiger Network’s radio broadcast of Friday’s Missouri-Northern Kentucky men’s basketball game. Kelly, as well as regular analyst Chris Gervino, will be in Georgia preparing to call the Mizzou football game there Saturday.
“I certainly put it at the top of what I’ve gotten to do so far,” said Wiese, who has called games in the Missouri Valley Conference basketball tournament and broadcast the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout, a high-level powerboat event. “I’m thrilled, with all the people in Columbia who have worked for them in the past — they have a lot of options to be able to call on. So to call on me is really an honor.”
Wiese, 38, said he talked to Kelly on Friday and “got some pointers. I certainly appreciate the support he’s given me.”
KMOX sports director Tom Ackerman has had fill-in duties before, but it has been eight years since Mizzou games in the state’s largest market moved from 1120 AM to KTRS. So KTRS general manager Mark Dorsey approached executives with Learfield IMG College, which produces the broadcasts, about using his sports director in such situations “based on Brendan’s great job he did for the Missouri Valley Conference.”
“It wasn’t against Tom, he did a good job,” Dorsey said. “But it’s our property and it just made sense that we work together with (Learfield) and give Brendan a chance” for the game starting at 7 p.m.
Wiese is to work with fill-in analyst Matt Michaels, a Columbia sportscaster, and is thankful for Dorsey’s input.
“He put in a great word for me . . . and having that chance to jump in there is great,” he said. “I love college basketball, and having gotten to do (the Valley tourney) the last few years, I’m thrilled. This is something I’ve always wanted to do.”
In addition to hosting sports-talk shows and reporting for KTRS, Wiese is the voice of the football team at Camdenton High (at the Lake of the Ozarks). It’s a carryover from his first job at a small station in that area.
“I love getting down there. Mark and everybody here has been so gracious to let me do that every Friday,” said Wiese, who will miss Camdenton’s district game (against Washington) because of the MU opportunity.