On The Air
by Laura Nachman
Bucks County Courier Times
April 29, 2005

Lou Tilley's "Out of Bounds" that debuted last month on CN8 is striking out with some readers:

"Was wondering if you might discuss your thoughts regarding Lou Tilley's CN8 show 'Out of Bounds'? Personally, I think changing from 'The Sports Connection' was a huge mistake. It went from being a perfect ending to the sports day with discussions about topical events [in a live setting], to basically being a half-hour run-of-the-mill taped sports interview show.

"The guests are far from topical. Last week's guests included Olympic gymnast Paul Hamm, WNBA Commissioner Donna Orender, Olympic gymnast Carly Patterson, and USC Quarterback Matt Leinart. I watched 'Sports Connection' faithfully. Not any more. I am curious to see how the ratings for 'Out of Bounds' will compare to 'Sports Connection'."

- John Anderson Jr., Holland

Another wrote:

"I like Lou, but his show in this format is unwatchable. Bring back 'Sports Connection.' Save the boring journalistic holier-than-thou garbage to Bob Ley and Bryant Gumbel."

- Name withheld

Tilley did not respond to an e-mail for comment.

A CN8 spokesperson wrote: "We've received an overwhelming number of positive responses from viewers regarding the change to Lou's show.

"Please let your readers know that the reason for the change was so that we could appeal to a network-wide audience, including CN8's normal Maine to Maryland region and beyond to new media markets such as Atlanta, Detroit, and Sacramento. Therefore, the goal was to line up one-on-one interviews with national athletes and opinion-makers and we have been very successful in attracting great guests."

The spokesperson would not disclose ratings information. Estimates place most of CN8's programming in the 1.0 rating or less range. Each local rating point represents around 29,000 households.

One-man operation

WPHL continues with only one on-air sports personality, Matt Biondi, a year after parting ways with Geraud Moncure. Biondi, who originally was hired as the weekend sports anchor, continues to anchor on the weekends as well as three days during the week. News anchor Scott Engler does the sports the other two weekdays.

Industry sources say WPHL has no intention to hire a sportscaster as a money-saving move.

WPHL General Manager Vincent Giannini wrote: "We are always on the lookout for on-air talent that will add to the quality of our staff."


Last week, we mistakenly listed Comcast SportsNet anchor Neil Hartman as Phil Hartman.

April 29, 2005 6:13 AM