Fare well, T.C.
I mean it. I think everyone who has commented on his departure has been sincere in wishing him good luck with the new engagement on ESPN Pensacola, WBSR, 1450 AM, 101.1 FM. (Do they call it "The Buzzer"? They should. Maybe T.C. can rename his show. T.C., I hereby grant you an irrevocable royalty-free license to use it.)
But with all of the well-wishing, there's also a "but . . . " to many of these comments, suggesting some shortcomings that kept him down at The Ticket.
I think this is misguided. I think we need to do some celebrating. Not because he's left, but because he's on his way. I'll come back to this thought.
If I'm reading his Twitter feed correctly, he's going to be "host/PD," so other duties other than on-air, it sounds like. Good strategy, keep one's hand in management. He tweets that he's starting on-air on March 24. I cannot find any announcement of this on the WBSR website or any kind of a press release. Any radio types out there who can give us more details about T.C.'s show? Again, his Twitter feed says it's "Good Morning Pensacola." (Co-hosting with Chad Brillante, the incumbent? Solo shot?) Nor any chatter out there, really. I just Googled ["T.C. Fleming" WBSR], just like that, and got seven hits. Probably not a gigantic media event so nothing should be expected, but thought there would be some account of this other than T.C.'s. NOT DOUBTING that he's going to be on, just curious about how ESPN is handling it.
I did not hear one second of any of the T.C. sendoff segments, nor have I listened to It's Just Banter on this subject. I get the impression from Confessors who did that there was an overtone of ill grace from T.C. I hope that's not the case.
If it is, it's too bad. I feel pretty positive about T.C. and about this move.
His Ticket persona was among the most interesting I can recall. He was the Zelig of The Ticket:
-- The eager BaD intern who would do anything for the show and their hosts.
-- The presumptuous insider, pre-on-air days, who rubbed certain other hosts the wrong way.
-- The shy, soft-voiced guy who would show up occasionally on-air, do a roving-mic bit, mocked and humiliated by certain hosts.
-- The ambitious would-be host, given a brief shot with Jake, and the two of them even taking over a Hardline show with Mike in September 2011.
-- The co-host of It's Just Banter with Jake, which gained something of a following.
-- The host of The Top 10, sounding very different both from IJB and from his shy, soft-voiced guy.
-- The more mature fill-in guy whose shot selection had vastly improved.
In the past, I had not been interested in commenting on T.C. because it was so very obvious that he was so very ambitious to be an on-air guy, and I did admire the lengths to which he had gone to move up at The Ticket, but . . . . And I thought he did a very, very good job with The Top Ten. The truth is, and I've admitted this in the link you'll find in the next paragraph, I pulled my punches with T.C.
My past T.C. views got their most thorough airing in the comments to this posting, which featured the T.C./Jake Hardline appearance with Mike R on September 2, 2011: What Did We All Think of The Hardline Today? Which, if you take the time to read through it, was exactly that I did not care to engage in extensive T.C. nutkicking because I really did not want to knock a guy who was just starting out. Reading between the lines, yeah -- I didn't see him as Ticket host material, at least at that point. Which, combined with the nutkicking from Confessors, did not endear this site to him. I believe he once referred to it as the worst website ever, OWTTE.
But that was a long time ago. He's a hard worker, he's very smart -- I don't think he gets enough credit for his brains in these parts, I really don't -- he'll prepare the bee-jeebers out of his Florida shows, and I'll bet he'll do extremely well.
Who would have thought that T.C. would beat all other recent J.V.'s to hosting a drive-time show on an ESPN property? (Elf wasn't drive; B&S, Matt & Scot -- not ESPN.) This is a credit to his strategies at The Ticket and with IJB. Come on, Confessors, we need to do more than just wish the guy luck -- we need to acknowledge that if the standard is personal advancement, T.C.'s tenure at The Ticket was a success, and he made most of it happen by sheer industriousness and, yes, talent. There is no reason to think that he won't continue to work on his skills and keep his audition tape shiny and current.
I'll go out on a limb here: I think T.C. has a great career ahead of him. He's an ESPN team member now. He's ambitious. He's smart. He's interesting. He's young. He has an interesting look. He has a great-sounding media name. He works hard. Yes, he can talk. I think he is going to move up the ESPN ladder and we're going to see and hear a lot more of T.C. Fleming. And I think we will think that is a good thing.
And that's My Ticket Confession for the day.
Best to you, T.C.
* * *