Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Written By: Lamont Mann



Recently, Lesbo and I were discussing the dynamics of the broadcast landscape and he casually laughed and said "People think I have it in for 610 but they don't realize how much you dislike them".  Although Lesbo used the word dislike, I would say it's disappointment. 

It is my belief that SR610 is a public relations machine for the Texans and Rockets.  I am not the only one accusing SR610 of this but everyone is.  They tend to be a tad bit more honest and critical when it comes to the Astros but this is not the case with their business partners (Rockets and Texans).  Lately while listening to SR610, I have noticed personalities arguing fan's claims of them being "homers".  Is it a fair criticism to label the whole station of personalities "homers"?


Greg Cooke

Greg constantly elaborates on the bad decisions made by the Texans.  In his last couple of shows, he's been visibly annoyed by people that appear to drink the punch.  While upset and on his soap box about the Texans, he let the audience know he appreciates the benevolence of Bob McNair.  One of his biggest pet peeves with the Texans is "the Denver South" project.  He believes the Denver South project and failed miserably.  In addition to his disdain for the Denver South Project he also dislikes the nepotism at Reliant.
Not a Homer

John Lopez
John will honestly go after the Texans and criticize if warranted.  Unlike Greg, John is mild and critique them in a way that only points back to his background in Journalism.  John hits them objectively, constantly counter balancing everything he has to say about them.  In other words, for every bad thing he says about them, he will counter it with something positive.  In my opinion, John does enough to keep him in good standings with the Texans.
Not a Homer

Brien Straw
Brien is ferocious in his attacks towards the management of the Texans.  He is known for his epic battles with Barry Warner disputing any claim of sanity coming by way of Reliant.  At times, I think Brien is flat disgusted with the product as a whole.
Not a Homer

Marc Vandermeer
Marc's name is VanderSchaub.  I could literally stop right there.  Marc is the play by play guy and he always has a positive word to say.  I have yet to hear Marc scream for someone in coaching or management to be replaced.  In all fairness, I am sure Marc may have called for Frank Bush's job but let's be real, by the last two weeks of the season that was a for gone conclusion.  After a loss to the Titans, Marc wrote a blog titled It's Over, but it was not going full throttle.  Marc is known for battles with Josh Innes for being overly critical of the Texans.

Rich Lord
Rich tries to operate similar to John Lopez as an objective but he falls short because he make excuses.  Sure, Rich will tell you he felt Kubiak may have just lost his job in the Denver game but he fall in line.  For some reason he seem to believe his allegiance to the Giants disputes the notion of him being a homer for the Texans.  Honestly Rich could be right, he speaks of the Texans in another category: Job Security.  There are a few occasions where Rich exploded on air but it didn't appear genuine. 

John McClain

John will rip the Texans in his blogs and report card but he is always perpetuating that "glimmer of hope".  During Kubiak's pressers, I feel John could ask tougher questions but the questions John ask are "vanilla".  In short, John just don't appear mad enough and that is taken by the fans as him accepting the moves of the organization.  During his guest appearances, if a caller speaks negative towards the Texans, John will likely throw out a positive statistic by the Texans.  In my opinion, John is a homer but I think his homerism is out of necessity of access.  If I am to believe the personalities that come on air and say the Texans are mad at them for being too critical, I really don't see how John can operate as the Texans "beat writer" without being a homer.  During a heated exchange between John and I, i asked him if Kubiak should be fired and he said no.

Josh Innes
Josh is the biggest homer at SR610.  Although he proclaims not to be a homer, he is definitely the biggest homer there.  This dude will give you legendary games and historical references which leaves you wondering, how do he know this.  Yes Josh is a Homer, a homer of Kansas City and New Orleans but I think if you call him a homer of the Texans, he would literally come out of his zone and fight you.  Of course I am kidding about the Saints and Chiefs but he is probably the most critical of the Texans at SR610.  I may not respect his opinions when it comes pure football but I respect his stance on the way the Texans operates.  Josh is also unique in the fact that he is one of the only personalities that will public acknowledge the business partnership between the Texans and KILT therefore he has to work within certain parameters.  Sometimes I feel he pushes it to the edge but he's fearless in his opinions.  This is not to be confused with a person being negative 24/7 because he will equally applaud them for doing something right.
Not a Homer

Barry Warner
During the 2009 Season Barry predicted that the Texans will go to the playoffs in 2010.  Barry is now predicting they will go to the playoffs in 2011.  By Barry's own admission, Kubiak is his friend as well as Wade Phillips.  Barry will ask Kubiak non coach friendly questions at the press conferences but it's negated when he equalize it on his show by telling us how good Kubiak is.  When he's about to be critical of Bob McNair, he qualifies it by saying how great of a person Bob is.  Barry is very critical of the Texans but it becomes watered down when he defends them so passionately.


I believe the label "Homer Station" is not a fair label for the station as a whole.  We clearly see that everyone at SR610 is not speaking favorably about the Texans however the ones that do speak favorable are in high profile positions.  Marc, John, and Rich are some major names in the market and their words tend to get a little more traction.  Another factor in why they are called a Homer Station is the competition.  There are very few times when you can listen to a station and it's unanimous that every personality agree on a particular issue.  I can't think of one personality outside of SR610 who don't believe Gary Kubiak and Rick Smith should have been fired.  All in all, the label "Homer" is affixed on a person(s) because we the fans are upset they don't share in our emotion of a particular home team.

Lamont Mann
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robnemar said...

I know it sounds obvious, but the biggest problem I see with SR610 is too many of the hosts and analysis givers are wearing too many hats. It would be a much better product if you didn't have to hear Rich every day from 2-7 giving you his opinion about the Texans when you know he is on the side lines every Sunday giving you the Texans report. I think someone like Rich and Marc for that matter should only have the opportunity to wear one hat. If Rich wants to have the best 2-7 gig he can, then he need not be affiliated with the Texans in the matter that he is. Or if he wants to be the Texans sideline reporter, then he need not participate in the 2-7 if you know what I mean. I know that is not what is realistic at this point, but it just shows me that something is lacking in management behind the scenes. Unless they don't care about a fair an objective talk show host base. If that is the case then it is all good. But if they believe the product is something different from what it really is, then that is a whole different problem.

Matt Simon said...

They are homers, but I tune in to hear the debates between both sides.

To put it bluntly, I rather enjoy hearing the voice of reason coax out admissions of doubt from the Texans' employees.

Sure, tuning into stations with my point of view is always soothing to my ego. At the same time, though, I really like to hear that homer mentality consistently de-bunked and exposed as fraud by Josh.

Personally, I think it lends a bit of accidental balance that wouldn't be there without the Texans payroll being involved.

Summing this up - I don't agree with John McClain and Marc Vandermeer usually - and that is a good thing.