Tim Brando has signed a multiyear contract extension to continue calling college football and college basketball for Fox Sports.
In an exclusive interview with Sporting News, the popular and respected play-by-play announcer said there's no place he'd rather be as he heads toward the finish line of a 40-yearbroadcasting career.
Brando will continue to work with longtime booth partner Spencer Tillman oncollege football telecasts for Fox and Fox Sports 1. The 61-year old Brando originally signed with Fox in 2014.
While he's delighted with his contract extension, he can't help but recall his unhappy parting with CBS Sports that year.
"I didn't know where I would be I would be after after leaving CBS. There's thatold adage: 'Things happen for a reason,'" Brando said. "Man, I'm in a great spot. I’m thrilled. (Fox Sports bosses) John Entz and Eric Shanks have givena huge boost to my career at a time in my life where I'm very comfortable with where I am, and who I am, and what my role really should be."
Brando's a huge golf fan. Moving forward, he would love to contribute to Fox's golf coverage. But the new grandfather learned a hard lesson at CBS: Don't be too pushy.
"I was chasing sometimes. That’s never good for the long haul in a career. I think we can chase too much. Now I'm just really comfortable with whatever they want me to do. And I'm also equally happy to be home — and being a granddad," he said.
Like Fox's Joe Buck, Kenny Albert and Thom Brennaman, Brando is a second-generation broadcaster. As a teenager he started working with his father, Hub Brando, an announcer forKCIJ in Shreveport, La. Since then, Tim Brando has built a long and interestingcareer behind the microphone.
Did you know Brando was the original host of ESPN's "College Gameday," which premiered in 1987 with Lee Corso and the late Beano Cook as commentators?During his eight years at ESPN, Brando calledplay-by-play for 25 sports. Heleft Bristol to be closer to his roots in Shreveport.
After joining CBS Sports in 1996, Brando served as one of thatnetwork'stop announcers for 18 years. He hosted "College Football Today" and "At the Half" studio shows. He'sfamiliar to millions of viewers because of his work on NCAA Tournament basketball games. He also has called the NBA on TNT, worked Atlanta Braves and Hawks games for SportSouth, and hosted "The Tim Brando Show," which was simulcast onradio and TV.
Once Brando arrived at Fox, he talked with network brass and producers about how he could contribute to their growing college sports coverage.
"They said, 'Where do you see yourself?'I said, 'If you'regrowing your network, I'dlike to hope you need an experienced guy, a veteran guy, a guy who’s been involved in college sports for 30 years.' Ialways looked up to Verne (Lundquist of CBS). I said, 'Let me be your Verne, let me be that guy.' I’d like to think that was prophetic to some extent. This is proof that maybe they’re thinking that way."
When Tillman's contract with CBS was expiring in 2015, Brando alerted his Fox colleagues. Tillman jumped to Fox and the duo was reunited.Brando said that before he got to Fox, no network suits ever asked him with whomhe wanted to work.
"I foresee mebeing (at Fox) at least until I'm65.At the point, if things go the way I think they should go, that’s where I should hit the finish line," Brando said. "I think this is the place for me to stay. I’m not interested in hopscotching around at this stage of my career. I’ve already worked at enough networks."