The NFL strike ain't so tough for the players--they can keep busy on game day walking the picket line, hurling obscenities (or eggs) at replacements, or giving interviews to the media. But what's a sportscaster to do?
We asked a few how they spent last Sunday:
Dick Enberg, NBC: "I went to Burbank to do NBC's 'NFL Live' with my partner Merlin Olsen, then had a picnic with my family. All day people asked me if I shouldn't be someplace else.
"I don't know whether to prepare for future games with the NFL players or their replacements. It's like grabbing Jell-O and hoping none falls through your fingers."
Merlin Olsen, NBC: "After I worked with Dick, I took my family out to dinner. It was the first time we'd had dinner on a Sunday night during a football season since the last strike. I think I gained points with my family."
Al Michaels, ABC Monday Night Football: "My family and I had a backyard barbecue with my brother, who produces football games for CBS. We all thought we should do it more often. I think a lot of people may have that attitude if the strike goes on."
As for Monday night: "Since I already knew what happened with 'The Search for Spock' (it replaced the game that evening), I spent Monday night preparing for the 49ers game (tomorrow). It's a monster to prepare for a game where neither the announcers nor the fans know the players."
Jim Lampley, CBS: "I covered the Volvo tennis tournament for Channel 2 last Sunday. I didn't feel my time was wasted or I was out of sync, but contact me in a few weeks if the strike's still on and I might be nuts."
Charlie Jones, NBC: "I went to a party that (Universal TV exec) Jon Epstein had at the Sheraton Universal to launch the new television season. Each year he invites my wife Ann and me. Everyone asked me why I wasn't working and then they suddenly remembered. It felt strange to have a Sunday free."
Don Criqui, NBC: "I coached my son Andrew's Little League football team, the Essex Fells Bengals. He threw a touchdown pass and we beat the Caldwell Giants, 13-0. It was more exciting to me than an NFL game. I coach Andrew's team during the week, but this was the first time I'd gotten to see them play."
Benita Albert, pinch-hitting for hubby Marv, of NBC: "Marv stayed over in Toronto for the network's baseball game last Sunday, then went to New York to broadcast the Rangers hockey game. Since Marv isn't spending time preparing for the NFL games, he's lightened his work load and is more fun to be around."
John Madden worked on a CBS special on the strike last Sunday. We couldn't reach him for comment. At press time, the plane-shy color man was heading from NYC back home to California via bus.