Commentator evaluation: Kevin Burkhardt

Rate Kevin Burkhardt as an NFL and MLB commentator and studio host:

  • 5 stars - the best (or jointly the best) in the business at what he does

    Votes: 1 2.5%
  • 4.5 stars

    Votes: 6 15.0%
  • 4 stars - very good at what he does, but a notch below the very best

    Votes: 14 35.0%
  • 3.5 stars

    Votes: 8 20.0%
  • 3 stars - about average; competent, but not much more than that

    Votes: 9 22.5%
  • 2.5 stars

    Votes: 1 2.5%
  • 2 stars - substandard; lucky to still be making a living at this

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 1.5 stars

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 1 star - should be fired tomorrow for gross incompetence

    Votes: 1 2.5%

  • Total voters
    40

Conigliaro's Potential

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
For our second installment of this feature, I'm choosing Burkhardt because of some choice words in the NFL Game Thread yesterday about him and (I think especially) his color commentary partner, Charles Davis. Burkhardt has established himself as Fox's #2 NFL play-by-play man behind Joe Buck, and he also has some baseball chops as well. So in addition to rating Burkhardt and discussing his all-around merits as a commentator, I'd encourage discussion about two additional aspects of this feature:

1) Should we evaluate each play-by-play commentator on their all-around merits across multiple sports, or just focus on one sport at a time (possibly with multiple threads for each)? Because someone might feel very different about, say Jim Nantz as an NFL commentator, a college basketball commentator and a golf commentator; I think that's less likely true about Burkhardt, so I'm OK with putting him forward today.

2) If you have any suggestions about who should be next on the chopping block, I'm all ears. (I was tempted to go with Nantz today, but I'm using Burkhardt in part to clarify question #1.)
 

Conigliaro's Potential

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Huh. I wonder if the radio silence here - and the relative lack of votes cast - indicate that Burkhardt is a commentator who inspires no strong opinions, or perhaps even that relatively few people know who he is (or at least can match his name to his voice). That in of itself tells me a great deal, and will steer me in different directions going forward in this series.
 

tims4wins

PN23's replacement
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
22,210
Hingham, MA
Huh. I wonder if the radio silence here - and the relative lack of votes cast - indicate that Burkhardt is a commentator who inspires no strong opinions, or perhaps even that relatively few people know who he is (or at least can match his name to his voice). That in of itself tells me a great deal, and will steer me in different directions going forward in this series.
Nailed it IMO. Unless he is doing a Pats game or a national game it would be hard to comment on him. SoSH will be very familiar with all of the CBS guys, as well as the #1 Fox team, and then SNF / MNF. But #2-5 or whatever on Fox will almost never call the Pats, so we don't really know them.
 

Conigliaro's Potential

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Thanks for the further feedback - I think I'll go ahead with the next thread now, rather than waiting a week, so that everyone has someone else to sink their teeth into. (And it won't be Breen just yet; there are plenty of college and pro football commentators to work through before that season is done before we shift to basketball, but we will get to him in due course.)
 

cshea

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 15, 2006
23,158
306, row 14
I don’t watch much baseball, but at least for football Burkhardt isn’t really on in the Boston/New England market, at least for the NFL. 1-2 games a year, so he is probably an afterthought. If I had to list NFL pbp guys he’d be one of the last to come to mind.
 

Dick Pole Upside

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 6, 2003
4,303
39.932N, -85.848W
I think he's a really solid announcer, and the fact that he generates no strong opinion either way has its benefits and drawbacks.
I actually really like Burkhardt. As was postulated above, we don’t get to hear him too often in Boston on football, but I find myself thinking, “he’s good” every time I do hear him. I associate him more with baseball. I feel like he does a real nice job describing action on tv in a way that complements what I can see. Not hysterical or prone to hyperbole, but can rise to the occasion in important moments. I feel like he sets up his partners well. One of those guys who doesn’t have a super high profile, but when I hear him on a game I think it’s pretty important.
 

Ale Xander

Lacks black ink
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
24,365
I like KB. He's got a good voice. He usually smiles (when doing MLB unlike Buck) and projects controlled enthusiasm and is never offensive in any way.
 

Marciano490

Urological Expert
SoSH Member
Nov 4, 2007
39,134
Before Googling "Mauro wrestling", I honestly had no idea who this was. How many votes or posts would that thread likely get, do you think?
He’s pretty well known to boxing and MMA fans, so maybe 3? He called Mayweather v Pacquiao.

I think he’s got a great voice and brings an unmatched excitement and articulateness to broadcasts. He’s also struggled since his teen years with severe bipolar disorder. He made an intensely personal documentary about his life called Bipolar Rocknrolla that made me a bigger fan, but it looks like his mental health struggles are creating friction with his WWE gig.