On The Air
by Laura Nachman
Bucks County Courier Times
February 23, 2007

Jon Slobotkin's first position in the sports industry was as an unpaid intern at PRISM.

Today, he's a big-time executive, recently named vice president/executive producer of live events for Comcast SportsNet.

That means he is involved with live game productions in each of Comcast SportsNet's eight markets — Philadelphia, Baltimore/Washington, Mountain West Sports Network, Sacramento, Detroit, New York, Chicago and Atlanta.

“I feel so fortunate that I've been able to transfer my childhood interest in sports into a career here,” said Slobotkin, a six-time Mid Atlantic Emmy winner.

Slobotkin, 42, who grew up in Northeast Philadelphia and graduated from George Washington High School and Temple, has worked in one capacity or another at the Philadelphia sports complex since his first job “carrying a tripod across the street from the PRISM offices to Veterans Stadium for a live shot” since 1982.

Slobotkin worked his way up the ladder, producing Big Five basketball games, Phillies, Flyers, and Sixers games. He produced the final Phillies game at Veterans Stadium and the first show on Comcast SportsNet — “Daily News Live” — in 1997.

“It's nice to be able to do something you love,” said Slobotkin whose first management experience was as the student sports director at Temple's radio station, WRTI.

His achievements were recognized when he was inducted into the Temple University School of Communications and Theater Hall of Fame two years ago.

Slobotkin is married to his high school sweetheart, Jill. They have two sons, Lee, 15, and Neal, 8.

Emmitt replaces Irvin

It was long overdue, but ESPN finally cut Michael Irvin from its broadcasting team this week. Irvin will be replaced by Emmitt Smith, his former teammate and “Dancing with the Stars” champion.

Former NBA star Clyde “The Glide” Drexler, Olympic speedskater Apolo Anton Ohno, and boxer Laila Ali will compete on “Dancing with The Stars” this season.

Frick Award

Kansas City Royals announcer Denny Matthews won the Ford C. Frick Award on Thursday, presented annually for major contributions to baseball broadcasting.

Matthews will be honored July 29 at the Hall of Fame ceremonies when Tony Gwynn and Cal Ripken Jr. are inducted, and Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch receives the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for meritorious contributions to baseball writing.

Channel flipping

The 30th annual “Flyers Wives Fight for Lives Carnival” airs from 4-6 p.m. Sunday on Comcast SportsNet. ... Eagles Jeremiah Trotter, Brian Westbrook, David Akers and more will play in the “Arthur Fennell and Kenny Gamble Celebrity Billiards Championship” at 6 p.m. Saturday on CN8. ... Sixers television announcer Steve Mix had his jersey retired by the University of Toledo last week. ... Former Comcast SportsNet anchor and Sports Talk 950-AM host Matt Fine is working as a communications professor at Temple.

February 23, 2007 7:46 AM