On The Air
by Laura Nachman
Bucks County Courier Times
January 27, 2006
Little did John Clark know that when he attended his first rock concert, Bon Jovi, back in the 1980s, years later he'd co-host a special with Jon Bon Jovi.

That's what is happening as Clark and Philadelphia Soul co-owner, Bon Jovi, co-host "Philly Soul: Time to Win" at 7:30 p.m. Saturday on NBC10.

"The first concert I ever went to was Bon Jovi, with opening act Cinderella at the Spectrum," said Clark, a native of Wallingford. "My dad dropped me and five of my friends off at the Spectrum, and we were three rows from the top of the arena.

"I respect him as a performer and as a team owner. He's involved in every aspect of the Soul and is a big reason that the Soul has done better than some of the other peripheral sports in town."

The Soul open the season at 3 p.m. Sunday against the visiting Tampa Bay Storm on NBC.

Yallof returning to roots

Comcast SportsNet anchor and reporter Matt Yallof will return to his hometown this spring when CSN makes its debut in New York City.

Yallof joined CSN in 2000 and won four Emmys. A native of Long Island, he's a graduate of Muhlenberg College in Allentown. He is married and has three children (a 3 1/2-year-old daughter and 18-month-old twins).

New York will become the fifth market with a Comcast SportsNet, joining Philadelphia, Washington/Baltimore, Chicago and Sacramento.

No word yet on whether CSN will hire a full-time replacement for Yallof.

Sixers, Flyers in limbo

When UPN57 turns into CW57 in the fall, it probably won't affect the status of the Phillies, who recently agreed to a three-year extension of their contract with UPN 57.

However, things could be up in the air for the Sixers and Flyers, whose contracts with the station are up for renewal at the end of their seasons.

This week it was announced that UPN and WB will cease operations next year, and a new network, The CW, will take their place.

It wouldn't be surprising if WPHL, which will become an independent station and will have programming to fill from the loss of the WB lineup, makes a play for the teams.

Super coverage

The NFL Network's Super Bowl coverage is titled "Truly Everything But The Game" for a reason.

There will be 60-plus hours of live programming from Detroit beginning Sunday. NFL Films and NFL Network are sending 385 employees to the game (Glad to know somebody has a job in Detroit). Ray Lewis, Torry Holt, Trent Dilfer and Steve Mariucci will join "NFL Total Access" hosted by Rich Eisen nightly at 7.

On game day, there will be a 51/2-hour pregame show and a two-hour postgame show. This is the third Super Bowl for the network, which kicked off in 2003.

Ratings bonanza

The Steelers-Broncos game was the most watched television show of the 2005-06 season with 39 million viewers. The Panthers-Seahawks game was the fourth-most watched with 35.2 viewers, just behind the season premiere of "American Idol." Simon, Paula, Randy and Ryan still are a formidable team.

Double duty

It was a bad summer flashback when 6ABC had a news guy doing sports last week.

With Gary Papa sick, Keith Russell on vacation, and newcomer Jamie Apody in town but not on the air yet, it was weekend news anchor Walter Perez doing sports.

Over the summer, when 6ABC was down to only Papa, newscasters David Henry and Chad Pradelli were pressed into sports duty. I'm still having nightmares over that.

Meet the Phillies

Comcast SportsNet's "Meet the Phillies" show will be taped at the Granite Run Mall in Media at 11:30 a.m. Saturday. Harry Kalas will be on hand to sign autographs at noon. Tom Gordon, Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins, Aaron Rowand, Pat Gillick and Charlie Manuel will be part of the show. The event is free.

January 27, 2006 7:14 AM