Rondeau scores touchdown with 5-year deal

Bob Rondeau, who has been doing Washington football and basketball radio broadcasts since 1978 (save the years between 1986 and 1988), signed a five-year deal with Action Sports Media, the company that acquired the rights to Washington's broadcasts from Fisher Broadcasting. Rondeau's official title is that of Director of Broadcasting for the Husky Radio Network.

"Well, I've gone this far so I might as well go the distance," Rondeau told yesterday in regards to his future as the play-by-play man for the Dawgs. "Five years isn't as long now as it seemed 20 years ago, but Action Sports could have gone with a yearly extention if they had wanted to. It's a nice piece of security knowing that they were willing to go five years and there's options of course that can be excercised. I suppose it would be a bit presumptuous to assume that I can go on doing this, but I hope that I can continue to do a quality broadcast and that they would want to continue to use me as long as possible."

KOMO has been doing the Washington football broadcasts for forever...or at least that's how it has seemed. With ASM's acquisition of the rights to broadcast Washington football and basketball games, they decided to move in a different direction. "It's going to be a lot easier to maintain continuity with KJR," Bob said, referring to the fact that KJR is a sports-only station, something KOMO definitely wasn't. "With KJR, it's a more conducive environment to keep momentum rolling from the weekend into the week, whereas often we were at loggerheads with KOMO because they were going after a different type of market share."

So what exactly will the 'Director of Broadcasting' do for the Husky Radio Network? "Well, we had to come up with a title, so I guess that one was as good as any," Rondeau said with a laugh. "But it probably sounds a lot bigger than it should be. My job will be much the same as it was with KOMO. I'll be doing the football play-by-play, as well as the pre-game and post-game shows. We'll also be doing the same for basketball, as has been the case for awhile. We'll also be doing the coaches' shows and I'll also be doing a half-hour show that will be focusing on what's happening with the Huskies, and we really haven't hammered out the details yet on that.

"I just signed the contract on Friday and have had one brief meeting with KJR, but it was more of a 'Hi, how are you doing' thing more than anything else. Maybe the show will air in the mid-day, with Groz (Dave Grosby) or Gas (Mike Gastineau). And I will work with KJR's sales team if they need me to make sales calls or be there for consulting or any sort of historical background they may need, being that they are kind of new to all of this. And I will also be working with the different network affiliates as a correspondant, but that will be no different than what's gone on before."

Bob feels that KJR will not suffer any growing pains as they take on the Husky Radio Network. "I don't think it's going to be a problem at all," he said. "I've listened to them for years and have had spot interviews with their on-air personalities from time to time, so I'm very familiar with what they are capable of doing. And as far as gameday and the rest, the format there, as far as it pertains to me, will be very similar.

"What I'm really excited about is the technical aspect of it. KJR has state-of-the-art facilities. And the affiliation with the Sporting News Network will also be really helpful."

Now that Rondeau has signed his deal, he feels like ASM will get the same done with the rest of his current crew, color man Chuck Nelson and sideline reporter Bill Schwartz. And Bob will also be getting something he hasn't had ever - a basketball color personality.

"I remember doing the early Husky basketball broadcasts, where Bruce King would do the play-by-play and I was the color man," Rondeau said. "Then when Bruce went to New York, I did it all. But hopefully by getting someone to do color we'll be able to put out a product that can compete in the marketplace that includes the Sonics. They are also on KJR, so that makes it all the more important that we do it well."

'SLAM DUNK WASHINGTON', anyone? Top Stories