Wyche on NFL AM show that’s set to debut Monday

Steve Wyche of NFL AM. (Courtesy of NFL Network)

Steve Wyche of NFL AM. (Courtesy of NFL Network)

Before heading out to practice today, we want to wish our pal and former colleague Steve Wyche and the rest of the cast of “NFL AM” well on their new show which debuts at 6 a.m. Monday on the NFL Network.

The four-hour morning show plans to feature seasoned and opinionated talent who will report and debate news, and examine the personalities that play the game.

Along with my fellow Howard alum Wyche, who I backed up when he was the Falcons beat reporter for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution from 2005-08, NFL AM’s talent roster features 13-year NFL veteran Eric Davis, Mark Kriegel, Brian Webber and Nicole Zaloumis.

The show will be based at NFL Network’s Culver City, Calif. studios. They have been doing test runs over the last few weeks. Here’s an interview with our guy Wyche:

Steve Wyche begins his fifth season with NFL Network and NFL.com, providing reports from team facilities and games on a variety of programs including NFL GameDay Morning and NFL Total Access. Additionally, Wyche is a regular columnist on NFL.com and is the co-host of the site’s ‘Cover Two’ podcast. Previously, he covered the Falcons for four seasons for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Wyche has more than two decades of sports journalism experience including posts with the Washington Post covering the Wizards and the NBA, and the Miami Herald on the Dolphins, Heat and University of Florida beats. 

Learn more about Wyche with this brief Q&A:

When did you know you wanted to pursue a career in journalism? “I was in high school when I thought that journalism was my likely career path. My father worked in the sales department of an NBC TV affiliate in St. Louis and I spent a lot of time at his station and around the business. I wanted to ‘grow up’ to be like Bryant Gumbel. There weren’t many minorities broadcasting sports back in the day and he was one of the best in the business. He really inspired me and I couldn’t be more honored to be in the same profession. The deal was sealed to pursue journalism when I found out that math classes weren’t a heavy part of the curriculum in college.”

What was the best interview you conducted? “One of my favorites came when I was with The Washington Post and spoke with NBA guard Gilbert Arenas, who explained how his decision to choose the Washington Wizards instead of the Los Angeles Clippers in free agency came down to him flipping a coin. I’m sure the money Washington gave him was the real impetus in driving his decision, but Gilbert was so out there and such a good story-teller, it allowed me to write a really cool story and have a good time in the process.”

What has been the most unique story you have covered? “Covering the Michael Vick dog-fighting story with my colleague D. Orlando Ledbetter [Hey, that’s me!] when I was at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution was the ultimate test of my career. It not only was a tiring, exciting and difficult saga to cover, but it also involved a human element that’s hard to explain. I had enjoyed covering Vick for years and actually had some great football and non-football conversations with him. Then, when this broke, finding out all these things about him and being involved in the fallout that touched such nerves in American consciousness and divided Atlanta, a city that I love, was incredible — in good and bad ways. I hope that one day, Vick and I could simply chat about that whole episode – how he viewed the media coverage and how it was from our perspective to learn so much about someone we thought we knew, but really didn’t.”

What would surprise you this NFL season? “While so many people are counting out the Saints with all they’ve been through, I’d be surprised if they still weren’t in playoff contention when all things are said and done. There is something about those players, that organization and that city that makes me think they’ll rally.”

How has it been adjusting to your new schedule? “I’ve never been a big sleeper but it’s so hard to put together more than three hours of sleep at a time during the day. I feel like I did when my sons were babies. I’ve learned that five hours of uninterrupted sleep is far more precious than seven or eight sporadic hours.”

What is one thing most people don’t know about you? “I am not overly superstitious but for about the past 20 years or so, I never set my alarm clocks exactly on a multiple of five. I always set my clock at an odd time, like 7:07 or 8:01.”

What is your must-have technology? “Not a big tech guy but I am finding out that the ‘off’ button on the cell phone has become money. I’m trying to sleep during the day now when everybody else is living a normal life, so the only way to get some rest is to shut the phone off.”

What is the best advice someone has given to you? “It’s something a former football coach said to our team and it’s how I try to live my life: you can’t win sitting on your butt. In other words, create and seize life’s opportunities because if you wait, someone else is going to take what could be yours.”

Good luck Stevie!

–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog

Get instant updates on Twitter at AJCFalcons and you can join the Facebook Fan page at AJC Falcons.

20 comments Add your comment

[...] Wyche on NFL AM show that’s set to debut on Monday – Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) atlanta breaking colleague cowboys facebook journal louis show uncategorized [...]

Steeeeeeeeeeve

July 29th, 2012
10:26 am

Steve Wyche was a great beat writer

mike

July 29th, 2012
10:28 am

first??? wtg wyche

mike

July 29th, 2012
10:29 am

alas…foiled again

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

SWAT Native

July 29th, 2012
10:47 am

My man Black Dynamite is prospering!

[...] Atlanta Falcons This entry was posted in Atlanta Falcons and tagged debut, Monday, show, That's, Wyche. Bookmark the permalink. ← Fan Voice: How will Ryan Tannehill’s arrival affect the Miami Dolphins’ QB competition? [...]

[...] Wyche on NFL AM show that’s set to debut Monday – Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) business cardinals facebook florida journal rams steve washington wyche [...]

dean

July 29th, 2012
11:25 am

Wish I got the NFL Network. But Comcast/the NFL can kiss my rear. Prices keep rising and channels keep migrating to “premium” level.

And that was some great advice from the former football coach. However, the P.C. police won’t like it. Something about ambition and determination not being in vogue these days.

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

Rick

July 29th, 2012
12:39 pm

Big ups to Wyche! Congrats on your show man!

Wilson Pickett

July 29th, 2012
12:41 pm

NFL network=Overkill 24/7/365

JSS

July 29th, 2012
12:46 pm

Said it 6 years ago, “haters” needs to be retired from some folks lexicon…

Congrads on the new show…

D man

July 29th, 2012
1:14 pm

Hey, with Steve on the show, maybe they will talk about the Falcons for a change instead of the Cowboys, Pats, Jets, and Broncos.

kbb

July 29th, 2012
1:29 pm

DMAN the Falcons dont push the meter. Whats the compelling story that ESPN can tell about the Falcons? We are a vanilla team that is good but not great and we have no superstars (maybe Julio can become one). Our most visible player is a walking lampost

hbcuclassics

July 29th, 2012
2:10 pm

Black College Power Poll
Pre-Season 2012

1. Alabama State
2. Bethune
3. Grambling
4. Norfolk State
5. SC State
6. Alabama A&M
7. FAMU
8. Winston Salem
9. Jackson State
10. Albany State

http://www.hbcuclassics.com

ASU Hornet, RB, Isaiah Crowell HBCU Pre-season All-American

Esquire

July 29th, 2012
2:27 pm

Well Wyche doesn’t know buick or football…………..Saints are gonna finish next to last in the NFC South (that would be 3rd place)

Esquire

July 29th, 2012
3:19 pm

hbcuclassics

July 29th, 2012
2:10 pm
___________________________

Just curious, are you holding a wake for Isaiah, promoting the web site, promoting Historically Black Schools, Colleges, and Universities football, hoping to begin a blog of your own?? It’s fine by me if you carry a torch but just wonder what your fuel source is.

Gordon Hewitt

August 4th, 2012
3:47 am

Nice blog keep writing!

D. Orlando Ledbetter

August 4th, 2012
9:12 am

Gordon Hewitt — Thank you kindly!