The National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association (NSSA) announced Thursday that the Nashville Predators’ Pete Weber has been recognized as the 2014 NSSA Tennessee Sportscaster of the Year. Weber, who has been “The Voice of the Predators,” since the franchise’s first season in 1998-99, is being recognized for the third time after winning previously in 2011 and 2012.
With a membership of nearly 800 sportscasters and sportswriters, the NSSA is “a non-profit organization dedicated to honoring, preserving and celebrating the legacy of sportscasters and sportswriters in the United States.” The NSSA’s work includes developing educational, networking, mentoring and scholarship opportunities for students interested in sports media.
Currently in the midst of his 17th season as the Predators’ primary play-by-play announcer, Weber has missed calling just two games, having called 1,236 regular-season games and all 56 Preds post-season contests during his tenure.
In addition to his work on Predators broadcasts, Weber regularly lends his writing to nashvillepredators.com and offers his insight on local radio and television sportstalk shows.
For the past seven years, Weber has served as an “Insider” on Sirius/XM’s NHL Network Radio and for the past five years has served as co-host of Slapshot Radio.
The official release from the NSSA is below.
NSSA ANNOUNCES 2014 AWARD WINNERS; RAFTERY, SCHAAP, McCOY, VISSER ELECTED TO HALL OF FAME; EMRICK AND VERDUCCI NATIONAL WINNERS
Weber Tennessee Sportscaster, Climer and Calkins Tennessee Sportswriter of the Year
Salisbury, N.C. (January 8, 2015) The National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association has announced that Bill Raftery, Dick Schaap, Hal McCoy and Lesley Visser are part of the largest class of inductees in the organization’s 56-year history. They will be enshrined during the NSSA’s annual awards banquet, June 8, 2015 in Salisbury, NC.
Joining the Hall of Fame quartet as honorees at the banquet will be 2014 National Sportscaster of the Year Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick and 2014 National Sportswriter of the Year Tom Verducci, along with more than 100 state sportscasters and sportswriters of the year from 48 states and the District of Columbia.
The ‘Voice of the Nashville Predators,’ Pete Weber is the Tennessee Sportscaster of the Year, for the third time. David Climer of the Tennesseean and Geoff Calkins of Commercial Appeal in Memphis are the Tennessee Sportswriters of the Year.
Raftery has followed a long college basketball coaching career with a second career as a basketball analyst on television. He joined CBS Sports in 1983 and currently calls games for CBS, including his 33rd NCAA Tournament this year, as well as Fox Sports 1 and Westwood One radio network. Raftery had a long career at ESPN and also called New Jersey Nets and Big East Network games.
The late Dick Schaap is being recognized for his ground-breaking work as the first host of ESPN’s acclaimed Sunday morning show, The Sports Reporters, as well as for his five Emmy Awards. Schaap also co-hosted The Sporting Life on ESPN Radio (with his son Jeremy) and had a long print career, ranging from his job as editor of Sport magazine to authoring or co-authoring 33 books. Schaap died in 2002.
McCoy is a writer and columnist who spent most of his career as the Cincinnati Reds beat writer for the Dayton Daily News. In 2002, the Baseball Writers Association of America honored him with the J.G. Taylor Spink Award, presented at the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Despite being legally blind, McCoy continues to cover the Reds for FoxSportsOhio.com.
After a career of firsts in both print and broadcast, Visser becomes the third woman elected to the NSSA Hall of Fame. She was the first female beat writer covering an NFL team, when the Boston Globe put her on the New England Patriots beat. Visser then embarked on a long television career with CBS, HBO, ABC and ESPN. Among her roles, Visser was the first female sideline reporter for a Super Bowl (1995), first woman assigned to Monday Night Football (1998) and first female color commentator for an NFL game (2001). She was recognized by the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006, when she was presented with the Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award. In 2007 she returned to writing as a columnist for CBSSports.com and in September 2014 she again made television history with the debut of the first all female national weekly sports show WE NEED TO TALK on CBS Sports Network.
Emrick wins the National Sportscaster of the Year for the second straight year. The “voice” of the National Hockey League on NBC and the NBC Sports Network, Emrick’s hockey play-by-play career stretches back more than 40 years. He has called more than 3,000 NHL games, including the last 25 Stanley Cup playoffs. A two-time Sports Emmy Award winner, he was the first broadcaster inducted into the US Hockey Hall of Fame and was recognized by the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award in 2008.
This is Verducci’s first election as National Sportswriter of the Year. Sports Illustrated’s lead baseball writer for more than a decade, Verducci started his SI career in 1993. Before SI, Verducci was a sports reporter and lead baseball columnist for Newsday and a sportswriter for Florida Today. Verducci added tv duty to his resumé in 2008. He won a Sports Emmy in 2012 for his work on MLB Network and TBS. He has served as a game analyst for FOX Sports since 2011.
From mid-October through mid-November, NSSA members in each state nominate up to three state and national sportscasters and sportswriters of the year. For state categories, the top two, plus ties, are placed on the final ballot. For national categories, the top ten, plus ties, are placed on the final ballot. NSS national board members provide nominations for the Hall of Fame categories, and ten names are placed on the ballot for each of those categories. Final balloting takes place during the month of December.
For a complete list of 2014 winners, please click here.