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Sports


Pluto: Kosar's behavior in the broadcast booth is forgivable
Terry Pluto says Kosar's harsh comments during preseason game were strange, but not enough to get him fired

by WKSU's AMANDA RABINOWITZ


Morning Edition Host
Amanda Rabinowitz
 
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Browns fan favorite Bernie Kosar has found himself in a media hailstorm after making some harsh comments during the broadcast of last week's preseason game. The former quarterback apologized to St. Louis Rams coach Jeff Fisher and was reprimanded by the Browns front office.

WKSU commentator Terry Pluto says there are times to make an example of poor behavior, and this isn't one.
LISTEN: Terry Pluto on Bernie Kosar's broadcast booth behavior

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LISTEN: Terry Pluto on Indians postseason chances

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One of best at diagnosing the game
Terry Pluto says former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar is one of the best at diagnosing the game of football. "He's almost like psychic when [the teams] come to the line, 90 percent of the time he has it down to one or two plays and one of those is what it is."

Kosar's harsh criticism
Kosar works as an analyst during Browns preseason games. During the opener last week against St. Louis, he made some harsh comments that have gone viral. He called some of the Rams players "horrible" and, as Terry Pluto explains, Kosar aimed criticism at their third string quarterback, Kellen Clemens. 

"There's a story that Clemons took his kid, they met the pope, the pope blessed him and then Bernie [Kosar] said, '“Bless me father for I have sinned. I have to watch him the whole fourth quarter,'” Pluto says. 

Rams coach Jeff Fisher said during a press conference last weekend he didn't appreciate the comments. Kosar was reprimanded by Browns CEO Joe Banner and then called Fisher to apologize. 

Blown out of proportion 
Pluto acknowledges that some of Kosar's comments were off-color and below-the-belt, but he thinks the incident as a whole has been overblown. Pluto says Kosar was "grumpy" and not on top of his game as a broadcaster. "An apology is fine, but calls for him to be fired are ridiculous."  Still, Pluto says being a broadcaster comes with a certain responsibility. "I do ask, 'How would I feel if this person wrote or said this about me?' You can still be critical, but how are you doing it?... If you listen to talk radio, there is a lot of name-calling. Push the envelope. Be edgy. And then [you ask yourself], how do you want to represent yourself on the air?"

Pluto says he's surprised this happened during a "meaningless" exhibition game,  and says it's the result of 24/7 sports news cycle and social media sites like Twitter. "This is all one of those things where you feel like an old guy in a new media world."

Still, Pluto says "fans love Bernie," so this incident should have little affect on Kosar's reputation or preseason analyst job. He's expected to be back in the broadcast booth for Thursday's game against the Detroit Lions. 


Related WKSU Stories

The ‘crazy cycle’ of Browns fans: Clamoring for another QB rivalry
Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Terry Pluto: No longer just a 'ding on the head'
Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar starts over
Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Terry Pluto: talks about a new focus on old players
Wednesday, July 28, 2010

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