If you are a Nashville Predators fan you have listened to your team on the radio. The key to a good radio crew is their ability to make you feel like you are at the game. In Nashville that is the job of Tom Callahan.
It’s not just the players who need to get ready for the season. I asked Callahan what he needs to do to be ready for the season.
I get to wear many hats here in Nashville even though my official title is simply “radio play-by-play”. In addition to calling every Preds game on the radio with my color man Stu Grimson, I also manage our radio network and everything that goes into putting the product on the air across our 12-station network.
Setting up the network for games includes testing all equipment from the arena to our flagship radio station 102.5 The Game in Nashville, from The Game to our provider SkyView Networks, and then finally from SkyView to the affiliated stations. We do this via broadcasting two games in the pre-season (one home and one road) to check all setups. We also do early testing on the lines in our building to make sure that when we air that first pre-season game everything will work as it should.
By this time of the year I’ve already made sure all affiliate contracts are fulfilled, visited those radio stations and made sure that we do all we can for them outside of the broadcasts. Now the focus goes into the actual broadcast and includes several meetings with personnel from The Game, our game night engineers (which involves testing the local equipment), and internal discussions on format, content, production and many other values.
Of course, there’s the hockey side of things which involves a lot of reading and paying attention to what’s going on during training camp with teams. It also serves as a good time to remember which players went where in free agency or may have been traded over the summer. And with this year bringing new divisional opponents plus games against every NHL team, there is a lot to focus on.
Finally once everything is in order and I feel like I’ve caught up on the world, it’s time to broadcast a hockey game.
Tom Callahan is clearly a very hard-working guy, and his voice will be heard on 102.5 the Game for years to come.