One morning in 1993 I was sitting at the kitchen table with dad eating breakfast and waiting on SportsCenter to come on. This was a custom in the Potter household as dad was a St. Louis Cardinals fan and avid follower of baseball, and I was in love with the NBA. That morning however, something changed, a new voice came over the airwaves to co-host with Craig Kilborn. The man had a wide smile, twinkling eyes, and presented like a star that had just been formed from the cosmos. For the next twenty years the man would go on to become one of the biggest names in broadcasting, hosting SportsCenter, NFL's Monday Night Countdown (IMBDU.com), and ESPN reality show Stump the Schwab (2004, CBS Interactive Inc). That young man would go on to change sports broadcasting in ways nobody could imagine, bringing a whole generation back to the love of sports. The man's name was Stuart Scott.
For the next twenty years Scott would use his love of sports and natural knack of entertaining audiences to draw in young fans, while simultaneously causing the older generation to grin and shake their heads. In his first SportsCenter appearance the segment he did on Bobby McCray stood out, as a life-long Cubs fan myself and mom loved hearing things about the Cubs, and Bobby McCray was a personal favorite of ours. His voice made the segment, which is largely insignificant, something I remember.
Stuart getting excited on screen was always a joy as you heard a “booyah”, as boisterous as a bullhorn on set, and it always brought a smile to my face. His catch phrase “Cool as the other side of the pillow” has been used by others in the broadcasting business -I've heard JBL from World Wrestling Entertainment use it more than once-.
For 26 years, from a small station in South Carolina, to the national spotlight with ESPN, Scott's voice, love, and dedication to sports, his fans, his friends, and family. Stuart Scott wasn't an actor, a celebrity, or a broadcaster to everyone who watched him on television, he was a fan, one of us. Stuart Scott died of cancer on January 4, 2015 and it is my hope that Scott died as he lived, with a smile on his face, and as cool as the other side of the pillow.
Monday Night Countdown. (NA). IMDU INC.com. 06:13, January 5, 2015. Retrieved From: www.imdb.com. Stump the Schwab. (1, July 2004). CBS Interactive Inc. 06:07, January 5, 2015. Retrieved From:www.tv.com.