BY MATT OSTROW
The commentary for the first BIG 10 Championship game added to an already exciting game. On the call for the game was Gus Johnson doing the play-by-play and Charles Davis on color commentary. The two were a great combination. Gus Johnson was exuberant like he normally is and Charles Davis provided calm insights into the game. In a back and forth game between the Badgers and the Spartans, full of excitement, the team gave the fans great commentary.
The most memorable call of the game was when Wisconsin had a 4th and 6 with 4:17 left in the game, down by five points. The Badgers decided to go for it on 4th down and Johnson did a fantastic job setting the stage for what was a great moment. The Badgers’ quarterback ended up rolling out and throwing across the field to receiver Duckworth, who caught the pass even though he was double-covered byMichigan State players. Johnson used few words to describe the play, but used his words wisely to call the great play. Johnson said, “4:23 to go, big play here for Russell Wilson. Wilson looking, fires across the field! Oh! What a catch at the 6-yard-line. Duckworth 36 yards and a first-down for the Badgers.” After that exciting call by Johnson, Davis went on to tell about how the offensive coordinator felt about receiver Duckworth who just made a huge play. It was great to know the back story of this little known receiver.
The production was also great by FOX. FOX does not do many college football games and I am used to seeing only NFL football on FOX, but they did a great job capturing the atmosphere inIndianapolis. There were great shots from every angle of great plays as well as good shots of the crowd and bands. The only gripe I have is I feel FOX should have a separate song that plays into commercial break instead of the same song they play for NFL Sunday games. The atmosphere of college football is much different than the NFL and their NFL song does not capture the feeling of college football.
The team of Johnson and Davis provided great insight and back-story into the very exciting BIG 10 championship game. This was my first time seeing this team of commentators and I think I would watch almost any type of football if I knew they were on the call.