Kellogg offers new style as CBS lead NCAA analyst Print
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Tuesday, 17 March 2009 10:58
NCAAB Headline News

 NEW YORK (AP) -Clark Kellogg's mother gave him a plaque early in his marriage that offered this advice: It's not about having the right partner; it's about being the right partner.
Kellogg likes to think he takes the same approach to his job as a college basketball commentator. Such a congenial sentiment doesn't exactly sound like something that would come from his predecessor as CBS's lead analyst, Billy Packer.
Famous for his biting, unapologetic opinions, Packer inspired plenty of chatter about the sport - even if it was criticism aimed at him.
Fans got a taste of Kellogg's style Sunday during the selection show, a frequent stage for Packer's barbs. Kellogg predicted beforehand that he was unlikely to rip the committee's decisions, and, indeed, his appearance was uneventful.
Kellogg likes to say he doesn't want to ``major in minor stuff.''
``To me, sometimes so much of what people try to grab hold of - and nitpicking at that process - is minor stuff,'' he said.
17 years, calling games and, since 1997, co-hosting the network's studio show during the tournament. The 47-year-old former Ohio State star was tabbed to replace Packer in July.
Before parting ways with CBS, Packer had done every Final Four since 1975 dating to his stint at NBC.
``He's been an institution and an icon,'' Kellogg said. ``It's going to be different for the viewers. He had a terrific way to be able to tie the history of the game to the present because he'd been around so long. ... He had a reservoir of inventory that he could draw on that you just can't go get that, you know?''
Play-by-play announcer Jim Nantz said that even as he works with his new broadcast partner, he feels Packer watching the broadcast.
Nantz and Kellogg called three games together during the regular season. They'll get to know each other a lot better now that the calendar has turned to March. The conference tournaments last weekend launched a stretch of 15 games in 23 days, culminating with Kellogg's first Final Four.
Nantz conceded he was nervous about adjusting to a new pairing. He wasn't comforted much by advice of ``just have fun.''
``I've never understood what that means,'' he said.
``It's hard to manufacture fun,'' he added. ``It's hard to manufacture chemistry.''
But by their first TV timeout just over four minutes into the Memphis-Georgetown game Dec. 13, Nantz insisted, he knew everything would be all right.
``It does feel like we've been working together a long time,'' Nantz said.
Said CBS Sports president Sean McManus, ``I think they'll be together not for years but for decades.''
 

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