2005 Rod Black

by Don Goodwin

Rod Black, isn’t about to challenge Mike Weir — unless he gets a few strokes — but his golf game is in pretty good shape, as chronicled in a feature story on the 40-year-old lead sports commentator for TSN in a cover story in Ontario Golf News Magazine a couple of years ago.

Rod Black

Rod Black

Jonathan Oke’s story on Rod introduced him this way: “There is an innocence exuded by Rod Black’s televison persona, a boyish little sports junkie trying to get out, giddy from the opportunty to be part of sporting spectacles from the glamorous World Figure Skating Championships to the Olympic Games. It only stands to reason. Growing up in Winnipeg, Black occupied his winters with basketball and hockey, his summers with lacrosse, football and baseball. “My days off were filled with golf,” he says.

Rod started his broadcasting career in hometown Winnipeg with a sports anchor job at CKY TV right out of the Creative Communications course at Red River Community College. As any broadcaster will attest, entering the business at that level before you’re 20 is a remarkable break – or early recognition of major talent. Rod was hosting NHL Winnipeg Jets games at age 22.

He’s come a long way from that formidable beginning. Among his packed TV assignments scheduled for this year were Blue Jays telecasts, Rogers Cup tennis, CFL, major golf events — and more — much more.

“For the most part, I try not to take it too seriously,” Rod has said. “These are games, remember. But there’s a time when stories have to be treated seriously, too.”

Those two sides of his nature are evident in his work. Impeccable preparation coupled with a light-hearted approach, and the ability to absorb a wide range of material on a broad spectrum of sports. He’s easy to work with for the series of ‘experts’ with whom he’s paired on telecasts of the wide variety of events he handles — creating very watchable, enjoyable television sports coverage.