Wednesday, October 17, 2007

News About Rusty Wallace and ESPN

Over at the AOL Fanhouse they are reporting that Rusty Wallace will not be returning to the ESPN/ABC NASCAR package in 2008. The details are sketchy, and I am going to post this page to document the progression of this story over the next several hours.

Wallace has been struggling on the air, and his Charlotte comments about Jeff Gordon really rubbed some ABC executives the wrong way. On the Busch side, Rusty has been stepping away from running his son Steven's team to do the telecasts, and often expressed frustration with some of the incidents and decisions made in his absence.

So, here we go. This will be the Rusty Wallace news thread:

1:15PM Eastern - AOL Fanhouse goes with the "Rusty fired" story. No details on when, how, or why. Just a brief blog report of a "source" telling the Fanhouse Rusty is done.

1:39PM Eastern - Second confirmation Rusty will finish the season and then step aside. No one named as his replacement. (Email from TV source)

2:30PM Eastern - Waiting for any official comment from ESPN. Last heard by email Rusty finishes the season and then moves in a new direction. Two emails do not make an official confirmation, so we are still waiting for something from ESPN.

2:51PM Eastern - I just want to add that Rusty has always been professional in our TV contacts, and he has a great sense of humor. No one here "wants" him to stay or go, this site offers opinions, and then lets fans offer theirs. We are merely following a story that was reported earlier on AOL.

4:00PM Eastern - No answer from the ESPN Media Relations group and the NASCAR contacts we have been using all season.

5:00PM Eastern - "Rusty Wallace is our guy. We have a long-term contract with him. He's the voice of NASCAR on ESPN." This from Norby Williamson, ESPN VP of Studio and Remote Production. As Jayski would say....DENIED.

Thus ends another exciting afternoon of chasing Internet "Silly Season" rumors. I have a feeling we will be visiting this issue again soon.

As we update this page, please feel free to add your comments. To post your reaction, please click on the COMMENTS button below, and then follow the instructions for posting. Thanks again, this should be an interesting story for The Daly Planet.


Anonymous said...

Can't say I'm surprised. If true, this could be the start of the wholesale change we've been asking for.

Anonymous said...

As I have said before, look for Rusty to leave at the end of the season, with the reason being to help his son and also get in on ownership in Cup. His contract with ABC does not allow him to own in Cup. He saves face and DJ can slide right in, with nobody being fired.

Anonymous said...

I don't think it has anything to do with what we think. They know he's bad but signed him to a contract 2 years ago before they knew what thay had!

SophiaZ123 said...

While I am happy to read Rusty is leaving the booth, as he did a horrible job, I do not believe in a public flogging and am glad he can save face by saying he needs to pay attention to his son's team. WHICH HE DOES by the way. :-)

I do not now who will be in the booth...Hopefully AB....Dj might have potential but uses a lot of "ahs" between sentences which could be annoying...course maybe he just needs to find his legs and I DO enjoy DJ.

Personally, I am a Jr fan and am SICK of the media stirring up things or FOCUSING that JR FLOSSED HIS TEETH TODAY! FILM at 11...I was shocked over the Gordon/Jr story Wallace kept harping on during the race forever.

Well, now if we can just get the race on the air for everybody and FOLLOW up info...well, this is a great baby step.

Thanks for the story, JD.

Your blog is becoming more addicting. :-)

Lisa Hogan said...

I like Wallace and I like Jarrett. There will be those just as displeased with Jarret. His uhhh every few words will get old after three or four hours.

I have felt, from the beginning, that Rusty was getting too much "direction" from his earpiece. I have felt that he was getting blamed for things that were not of his doing. (draft track)

I wish Rusty well in whatever he does. It can't have been easy for him to try to talk about a race when he still has that fire.

jfs-va said...

I'll tell ya what...I think things are changing.

SophiaZ123 said...

Ok...just read he is going back to the IRL BOOTH! Ug.

I try to catch a lot of the IRL races (provided there are any real racers left there next season!!) but did NOT like Rusty there last year. He did not improve. Geez...I hope that part is wrong though the announcers there are not great either and there is no radio for IRL.

This should be interesting. At least with AB we would KNOW what we are getting.

Anonymous said...

How does AOL get this before ABC's own Jayski??!!

Anonymous said...

back in the day when one driver took out another the old saying was it was "just one of those racing deals" which is of course double-speak for yeah someone messed up but it is between the two of us and i do not want to talk about it.

In the Rusty Wallace ESPN era we bring it down to the level of professional wrestling -with apologies to fans of that "sport" which as I understand it is great to watch in person- the splash zone of spit is about two or three rows - but of course I digress.

No mention of anything on jayski. Apparently it is a done or almost done deal.

Anonymous said...

As Rusty would say

Guys Geez we don't know anything about Jerry staying or going.

Anonymous said...

I've loved Rusty for years, but this just isn't his thing.

cwebs said...

While I agree with sophia that a public flogging would be a bit over the top, I'm actually thinking of getting into my car and circling through town while blowing the horn in celebration! Maybe I'll crank up some classic Kool & The Gang as well...

Celebrate Good Times, Come On!!!

Good thing I don't live in Miami, the neighbors would get the wrong idea and think Castro finally kicked the bucket!!!

So I might be taking all this a bit too seriously - so what!

This is a HAPPY DAY, I'll tell you what!!! A HAPPY DAY!!!

Anonymous said...

Best news I've heard all day!

Anonymous said...

I was watching Hotpass - what exactly did Rusty say about the 24 bumping the 8?

I think it's a good decision for Rusty to move on from Nascar broadcasting. Jarrett, I think, would be a good replacement. Now let's just get Bestwick in the booth in Dr. Punch's place!

SophiaZ123 said...


your post cracked me up. This is turning into a celebration day for me.
FIRST some very expensive meds I needed are coming from the drug company for me....THEN I read Rusty is allegedly out of the booth next year!! Woo hoo. Thankfully the IRL races are shorter and few er to sit through IF RW goes back there. ooh boy.

I still hope this is the truth and not a rumor!

Dang, think we will have to watch NASCAR NOT ...will they mention this? nah, maybe I will wait for JD's report.
I don't have the energy to get aggravated at that show today. :-)

Sorry Rusty, you just don't have "it" to be in the booth. I bet Andy is relieved as Rusty often seemed to STOMP on his comments and you could feel the vibe through the tv. I hate when somebody is passive aggressive and I think that is the impression we got.

Hope you don't get busted for doing donuts in between blowing the horn, Cwebs.


Daly Planet Editor said...

In a way, you have to give him credit for giving this a try. He stuck it out on the IRL package for a whole year to get to this point.

He was a fish out of water getting his TV experience with Helio, Marco, and Dario.

If this is confirmed, it will be interesting to see what he chooses to do. He would be one exciting owner, that is for sure.

PT said...

I thought Rusty quit half a season ago, just hasn't left yet.

Anonymous said...

Rusty plain and simple is horrible in the booth.

He announces as well as Steven Wallace drives.

Good riddance.

Rusty, your lips are glowing cherry red from all of the hot-air that's escaping from your mouth.(Harvick fans will understand.)

cwebs said...

Well, I'll give anyone credit for trying something, but what was ESPN/ABC thinking here??? Couldn't they tell from his IRL performance that he was going to be a disaster? It was certainly clear to me last year that he wasn't right for the booth, so why couldn't they see that? Did they think that he would just magically "click" when he switched to covering NASCAR? If so, then they were deluding themselves!

To me, that's the root cause for most of ESPN's problems this year - self delusion. Instead of being conservative and simply concentrating on getting off on the right foot, they just threw a whole bunch of stuff together - inexperienced announcers, crazy new gimmicks, loads of technology, forced diversity, etc. and expected it to work. They seemed to think it would be successful just because they are the GREAT ESPN. What arrogance!

Anonymous said...

John, please check the other blog site written by tall glass of milk, the writer of this Rusty Wallace item on the AOL Fanhouse site.

She has a rumor at her original NASCAR blog linked in that story. If it is Rusty, that rumor would be more likely to be the cause of the Rusty's firing. I'll link to it, but please read it yourself and if you want to remove the link, please do so.

Scroll down to the item titled Racially Motivated:

I found it a controversial rumor for a NASCAR media personality WHOEVER it is (once I saw it I was waiting for Deadspin to figure it out and come out blasting). If it is Rusty and was confirmed by NASCAR or ESPN, more likely he was/is fired for that along with them being unhappy with his performance and the Gordon comments. I can't imagine them simply firing him without allowing him to save face, if you will, if something more severe hadn't happened.

Again, if this is not appropriate here, please remove.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jeff said...

Rusty Wallace is the worst commentator in the history of broadcast sports. I hope he won't be finishing out the season.

I'm just glad that ESPN recognized there was a problem and is choosing to take action. Taking away that terrible draft tracker was the 1st step. Canning Rusty will be a huge help.

Anonymous said...

LOL on your first post cwebs!

on your second post, maybe they, like most people didn't actually WATCH the IRL broadcasts? ;-)

OK. that was mean. Sorry to Tony George. ;-)

Very interesting news to say the least. Was kind of figuring there might be news like this leaking soon after Jarret's announcement to retire.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure Rusty is a nice guy and he has lots of personality, but he was overconfident in his broadcasting abilities. I vaguely remembered an interview with him around mid season (looked it up now) and I was disappointed to see he thought he was a good broadcaster and didn't need any help. I had hoped he would use the time when the races were on FOX and TNT to improve.

Wallace owns a Busch Series car that Stephen Wallace has driven this season to mixed results.

"I am kind of a talkative guy and I am going to call it like I see it," said Wallace, who spent last season calling IndyCar events for ESPN and ABC as practice.

"Let me roll, let me flow. If you hold my reins back, I don't think it's going to be as good. I definitely have my own personality."

Feinberg said the network has worked extensively with Wallace to train him as a broadcaster, but has been careful not to wash out the color that comes with Wallace's huge personality.

"Our goal as managers and producers is to allow people to be themselves because that's how a Charles Barkley, a John Madden, a Troy Aikman have found their place," Feinberg said. "It would be insanity for me to try to change Rusty."

SophiaZ123 said...

YIKES! My eyes! wish I hadn't read that.... To the link about new ESPN commentator but who else could it be??? I don't know what to think about that...or that site.... though the place was correct on the Evernham situation last year.

I do not HATE Rusty..he just was not a good fit in the booth.

I mean MNF tried Dennis Miller and apparently that little experiment didn't work either. Frankly, I also found Rusty rusty in the booth for IRL!!

I will be glad when there is indeed, a confirmation on this from JD or somebody.

I only wish he would leave sooner with his son's Busch team having so many problems and maybe Steven.

LuckyForward said...

In all fairness to Rusty, broadcasting is not his strong point. I was never a Rusty fan when he was driving because of the very same "there is only one way to see things and it's my way" comments he was making as a driver as well as a commentator today.

I do think Rusty could be a good pit reporter; the times that he has gone one on one with drivers in interviews have been his strongest moments.

Rusty deserves credit for doing the IRL races as a way to break into NASCAR. He gave it his best shot. Question is, did ABC give him their best shot?

Anonymous said...

I don't think Rusty makes a good announcer. Jarrett should do better. The very best is Bestwick.
They need to get rid of Musburger and Suzy. They are horrible,horrible and horrible.

Andrew S. said...

Please no. Not Dale..ummm...ahhh....Jarrett.

Anonymous said...

I left a comment at 3:12 p.m. and wanted to add that the Rusty quotes above were from an article written by Jenna Fryer. I know some people were giving her a hard time saying she wasn't a good reporter last week about Tradin Paint, so I want to give credit where credit is due.

SophiaZ123 said...

Until he rids himself of his stammer, DJ is no Ned.

Perhaps he could to part time duty or rotate OR pit road as somebody suggested.

And what if, GULP, they would put Mus or SuzyQ in the booth! Say it ain't so!

SO we should be careful about guessing who is in the booth. And maybe somebody could give DJ speech lessons so he could lose the um, ah.

If Allen B isn't worthy if the job, I would find that most disappointing.

Also I would be anti Brad in the booth. Ouch, which just brought me back to that OTHER website comment again.

I started a thread on Rusty on Speed and it's up to 6 pages last I looked...but that place is just not much fun since they lost the good mods that used to do a better job at thinning the herd.


Anonymous said...

To anonymous 2:54:

Good point. I could see if somebody from ESPN saw tallglassofmilk's rumor and thought it was one of their people (and if they've managed to verify it, which is very important since right now it's just a rumor to us)- they want would take care of it and prevent it getting out further in the public before Mr. Daly (or like you say) looked into it.

Ryan said...

Hopefully Ricky Rudd or DJ will take his place.

Deborah said...

Posting the "racially motivated" rumor on one blog, then posting something about Rusty being fired on her second blog (without any confirmation that it's actually true) so close together is really questionable. If Rusty leaves ESPN at any point, now or at the end of the season, no matter what reason is given quite a few people are going to assume that it's due to the reason she posted in the "racially motivated" entry. I suppose she'll wiggle out of trouble by saying that it was a blind item that could refer to anyone but it seems like given the timing of the two entries that she's trying to make a connection. Accusations that someone used a racial slur are a very serious matter and could be very damaging to Rusty - or other broadcaster's - reputation.

Vince said...

I don't know what ABC/ESPN/Disney was thinking when the decided to make Rusty a commentator on their race broadcasts anyway. Did any of the talking head exec's even look at any of Rusty's TV interviews that he's done the past 25 years or so? The Rusty I saw in his interviews was arrogant, a hothead, brash, abrasive, had a "shotgun" mouth, and didn't respect a lot of his fellow competitors. So what made the exec's at ABC/ESPN/Disney think he'd be any different as an announcer? They got exactly what they deserved.

I personally would be glad to see Crusty go. I'll take DJ's "aaah's" any day. That's something that can be corrected. But Crusty would need a personality transplant to fix his problems on the air. Just my opinion.........

Daly Planet Editor said...

Well, that was interesting. From AOL to ESPN in a couple of hours.

Thanks for the comments, there will be more about this situation after the Martinsville weekend.

Isn't TV fun?

Vince said...

Damn, I guess I'll have to DVR NascarNotNow tonight to see if Erik "The Klueless" even mentions Rusty. I'll be wearin out the FF button!

Anonymous said...

"He's the voice of NASCAR on ESPN."

Hmmm, I find this statement somewhat scary. Really scary if I'm being honest.

I'll predict that in 2008 the "voice of NASCAR on ESPN" will be the voice on NASCAR Countdown, not the race. Then the VP can say he still issued a true statement, right?

Still, my thanks go out to this site and John Daly for checking with the proper sources to keep fans accurately informed.

cwebs said...

ESPN is standing by him?

Long-term contract?

The voice of NASCAR?

I hope this is just the network stonewalling the issue so they can get through the rest of this season without having some major public blowup. If they honestly believe that Rusty is the right person to be the "voice of NASCAR on ESPN", then they have no idea what's going on! Talk about self-delusion!!!

The emperor has no clothes!

The emperor has no clothes!

The emperor has no clothes!

Anonymous said...

how many Team GM's have said the same thing about the coach they end up firing weeks later?

So often in my mind that whenever I hear a "vote of confidence" from a GM I know the coach is toast ;-)

Andy Pandy said...

I agree with Vince - as a driver, Rusty had his fair share of fans, but I have to believe that it was from his on-track performance and attitude, and not from his personality. He never did come across well in interviews, and it seemed like when another driver got under his skin and make him lose his cool (Dale, DW, etc.), he did not handle it very well. It's fun to take sides in rivalries, but it's a lot easier when the guy you are rooting against seems to be a nice guy. I just never got that feeling about Rusty. I would have thought that ESPN would go with a driver who didn't have such a high negatives.

Best solution - just put Ward Burton in the booth and let's have a ball trying to figure out just what the heck he's saying.

Anonymous said...

I truly believe that ESPN is deluded enough to think that Rusty is doing an excellent job in the booth. After seeing all their excuse articles on frontstretch, that's racin, ect. this week, I don't put anything past them. In their minds they are giving us top notch coverage.

Matt said...

Where there is smoke, there is fire. I think this will happen, most likely when Jarrett sits down with them to go over a new contract.

SophiaZ123 said...

I agree that when it comes to thinking they are the best, ESPN is FULL of "self delusion" ...must be their motto.

Most folks I know HATE ESPN and ONLY watch because that's where the games/racing happen to be.

oh, well...nice fantasy while it lasted though I am inclined to hope this might be stonewalling. That way it does NOT have to be addressed while Rusty is still IN the booth.

Thus, he saves face.

OMG!BRIEF OFF TOPIC: Watching Chasing Glory and the F word was over the radio of Jeff's car?

I gotta post this on the other link.

Many are disappointed Rusty is staying...except for two people and the folks who thought OJ was innocent. JUST KIDDING Rusty fans!!



Jo said...

Man, if this is true, I will be one happy camper! Rusty is just not suited to unbiased, informative commentary--and unlike DW, he hasn't shown any growth in his time on the air. DJ or Jeff Burton would both be far superior to Wallace--hope ESPN gets the message!

Richard in N.C. said...

I am not a Rusty fan, but I do feel you have to give him credit for being genuine. The last year or 2 when he drove it seemed to me that he mentioned the dreaded "aero push" every time I saw him interviewed. I also felt that his determination that he always knew the answer for how a car needed to be set up might have held his career back in later years as NASCAR technology passed him by, but he would not recognize it and would not listen enough to the engineers who became more important in the sport. I see that same assuredness sometimes in his unwillingness to accept Andy Petree's views frequently on car set up, etc. Rusty may not always be right, but I feel you have to give him credit for expressing what he believes, not what someone writes for him.

Richard in N.C. said...

JOHN- IF ESPN does let Rusty go, how much do you think Dale Jarrett"s "sudden" availability as a replacement would have to do with it?

wkwinborn said...

I like Rusty Wallace, the person. He's a character, and having characters driving these cars is the type of thing that makes NASCAR great.

However, I'm afraid that as a commentator, he has been too quick to subscribe to the "Erik Kusilias" style of NASCAR comment...hype over substance.

Busch Series Fan! said...

Boy whenever I have heard "rumors" it usually has some substance eventually.

Anonymous said...

What did Rusty say about Jeff Gordon? I guess I missed it.


Anonymous said...

Mr Daly--

I disagree wholeheartedly with your assessment that Rusty has struggled this year. His commentary is very enthusiastic, refreshing and insightful.

Rusty seems to be the real leader in the ESPN booth and while they may have struggled early, he, Jerry and Andy are much improved now. I felt like last week's broadcast was probably their best yet.

It's a shame to see how cruel people can be. Thanks to Norby Williamson, another false rumor has been put to rest!

Anonymous said...

I see that ESPN says that Rusty is their man. Bummer.

Well, before the next broadcast someone please educate Rusty on how to pronounce Gilliland correctly.

Anonymous said...

How about Kyle Petty in the booth? I enjoyed listening to him doing commentary this summer...

I'm not a fan of Rusty's, but at least he knew what he was talking about...unlike Brad D. Where did he come from? How does being a co-owner of a NASCAR team make him an expert?

Anyway...I say Kyle Petty should be in the booth!

Anonymous said...

John. What has gotten into you. First you post Bogus comments from "Erik" on your blog, and now you post a bogus story about Rusty Wallace. Please check your sources before posting a story like that. Your site has gone down the tubes, I will no longer be visiting. Im very sorry John.

Matt said...

Anon 7:18: The problem with Rusty is because he IS the leader of the ESPN booth. But he's not supposed to be. He is not the lead Announcer, he the lead ANALYST. Those are two very different things. Jerry is supposed to be the leader in the ESPN booth. Rusty is taking over in the booth and it is hurting the broadcast is most people's view.

Anonymous said...

Rusty seems to be the real leader in the ESPN booth and while they may have struggled early, he, Jerry and Andy are much improved now. I felt like last week's broadcast was probably their best yet.

I always wondered what happened to Baghdad Bob after the fall of Saddam Hussein. Apparently, he is now a flack for ESPN!

Remember, ESPN is the best, Rusty rules, and there are no American troops anywhere near Baghdad!!!

Daly Planet Editor said...


Don't confuse my site with a NASCAR news site. I post things because they are related to TV and we are going to talk about them.

I don't do program schedules, and I don't post the "stuff" that the networks send out. Lots of sites just post what the network sends them.

This story was posted on one of the biggest NASCAR blog sites, the AOL Fanhouse. I wrote about it, because I wanted to follow it. Even good old Jayski told me to run away fast.

In the short time between when it hit AOL, and when Norby said Rusty was saying, things were pretty wild. Phone calls, emails, lots of things flying around.

If things were all fine on the ESPN front, why would all this matter? Something is going on, and while I am not a reporter, its fun to watch while it does.

As you may see from my article, I send readers to the Fanhouse for the story itself, and then let them come back over here and react. I appreciate the comments.

Isn't it amazing the diversity and the feelings about the NASCAR TV coverage that the ESPN on ABC team has been providing?

Let's keep talking, its going to be a wild next couple of weeks.


Bill H said...

This afternoon I felt like the kid that went to bed thinking it was gonna snow tonight and now I feel like the kid that woke up to rain and no snow day.

FYI, Jayski Is all over this rumor (not) with an official ESPN release:

Rusty Wallace rumors untrue: there were some rumors floating around on Wednesday that ESPN/ABC would replace Rusty Wallace as it's analyst of the Busch and Nextel Cup Series races [to be Nationwide and Sprint Cup in 2008] for the 2008 season. All ESPN and Walalce sources have told me this is NOT TRUE and Wallace will return in 2008. From ESPN: "Rusty Wallace is our guy. We have a long-term contract with him. He's the voice of NASCAR on ESPN." NORBY WILLIAMSON - ESPN Executive Vice President, Studio and Remote Production.(10-17-2007)


Newracefan said...

Rusty is my sister's favorite driver so I was excited to hear he was going to be working for ESPN, imagine how disappointed I am now.
I agree with Matt's post about Rusty taking over the booth and feel much of Doc's problems are Rusty related. I also agree with the post that says he does not repect many of his former fellow racers, He allows those feelings to come through during the race and that is not appropriate.Just ask Jeff Gordon. Hopefully the rumor turns out to be true but I would like to see it handled professionally and allow him to save face and remain in the sport. He deserves that much.

Anonymous said...

Note that Jayski said the rumors were "untrue," not DENIED as he writes fo every other (non-ESPN) rumor.

Anonymous said...

Busch Series Fan! said...
Boy whenever I have heard "rumors" it usually has some substance eventually.

I'm pretty sure tallglassofmilk on AOL Fanhouse was the first to report that Ginn was shutting down the 13 and 14 cars and it would happen quickly. It was denied by the team the next day and she posted the denial update like she did with Rusty today - but Ginn merged with DEI, effectively losing the 13 and 14, about a week later.

So I'll just say long-term contracts aren't worth much these days.

Steve L said...

I do not like Rusty in the booth either and am amazed he himself didn't make a bad word slip while on air during a broadcast this year. I have been at races in the past and couldn't believe the bad language I heard Rusty and Steven use while I was listening to a scanner at the track. Then I looked around and took notice of all the children in the stands with scanners and headphones on. I was hoping they weren't on his channel hearing all that potty mouth!

Then this year we all heard Kyle Petty saying a prayer before the race only to be shocked with his four letter out burst in anger. I lost a lot of respect for him that day.

John, how do the announcers keep in check when it comes to bad language? Would they be fined by NASCAR? I know the FCC might fine the network but wasn't sure how NASCAR would view this.

Anonymous said...

FYI - tallglassofmilk is a fan that lives in Los Angeles ... She's also biased towards Hendrick and against Tony Stewart ...

Listen to Dale Jr / Truex and other drivers ... Do not believe everything that she puts in either of her blogs (AOL fanhouse and DrinkThis @ Typepad) ... You'll be made the fool if you believe her ...

That said ... The blind item sounds more like she was trying to alude to Ray Dunlap as we still have no official explanation as to WHY he was suspended this time around ... And the basis of that blind item would fit with Speed saying it was an off-track incident ...

Crockett said...

Please please please put Allen Bestwick in the booth. He's just so good ...

Plan B: I love the comment about puttint Ward Burton in the booth and let's have a ball trying to figure out just what the heck he's saying.

Anonymous said...

anonymous 9:47, I don't know who tall glass of milk is referring to in her "blind item" nor do I know if it's true, but it refers to a NASCAR commentator's new employer; Ray Dunlap doesn't have a new employer as far as I know.

Denny Hamlin recently said in a story (uh-huh, they did a story on her) that he reads her non-AOL site regularly, even though he's mentioned often on it.

Anonymous said...

Marty Smith reads tallglassofmilk's information out loud on Jimmie Johnson's radio show sometimes.

I'm waiting for a Daly Planet mention on one of the driver radio shows; I may have missed one all ready but I'm sure a mention is coming at some point. :-)

Anonymous said...

"He's the voice of NASCAR on ESPN".
You could see the vein in Rustys neck nearly explode as he and Brad disagreed on how things would play out at Talladega. Rusty actually grabbed Brad during that exchange, and Brad finally pointed his finger at Wallace, as Susie appeared to make eye contact with Brad suggesting they both share an equal opinion of Wallace. Rusty Wallace in no expert on NASCAR, and it shows week by week with his weak explanations and master of the obvious race calls. He ran from the sport because he became scared after Dales death and couldnt come to grips with his own mortality. Wallace was heard to say he would miss the money, but never really stated his passion for the sport. If Rusty Wallace is the "Voice of NASCAR" the sport is mute.

Anonymous said...

And another "thang".

They couldnt wait for Wallace to leave Penske. He religiously called the shots on race adjustments, and reliously over-adjusted the car week after week. The man would take a winning car and adjust it into 15th position. This past week when the axle came out of Stevens car Rusty started pointing fingers at someone for possibly leaving something loose. I cant wait for this guy to leave television and go home to his dusty Winston Cup Champions trophy that Barry Dodson won.

Anonymous said...

Since you say your not a reporter, I'd take the time to find out what is considered a confirmation of a story. You posted that there were two confirmations of this story before the comments from ABC. You also posted that "it is fun to watch this" I guess you like the wrecks too! Hope you got enough exposure with this stunt.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting, Rusty.

David said...

Two Words...

Joe Theisman ..

He had a long term contract too...

Bobb said...

those defending Rusty and even those throwing him under the bus would have more credibility if the posts were not anonymous. Just a thought

Anonymous said...

MRN is the Voice of NASCAR- Rusty is just another talking head.

Watching the ESPN booth is liking a wreck happen.

Anonymous said...

Those complaining about anonymous posts would have more credibility if they used an actual name themselves, "bobb."

Bobb said...

i'll ignore that last remark

Reminds me of when right after Rusty retired he was on Trackside - that is before ESPN put the leash on him and explained they don't play well with SPEED TV.

Anyway Rusty is saying after he retires he will all but be broke but in same interview talks about flying to the track in a private jet and running the busch team.

I lost a lost of respect for the man after that interview.

Anonymous said...

i'll ignore that last remark

Why, because you suddenly realized you're no less "anonymous" than anyone else, bobb?

Anonymous said...

I can't believe that people actually think that "never-was" Bestwick is a good commentator. He always had a chip on his shoulder and sounded cranky. He couldn't wheel a car, so he decided to go to the booth.

And Jarrett, the only way he is better than Rusty in the booth is if you have mute on.

I think ESPN's coverage is the best. Sure beats DW on FOX or anyone NBC ever had.

Next you'll be saying that Kyle Petty was a good commentator on TNT.

Anonymous said...

I think ESPN's coverage is the best.

Hi, Erik!

Anonymous said...

I've heard it all. Rusty making racist comments?

First of all he isn't new to commentating this year. Rikki Ractman is and so is Petty. Nice try though.

Anonymous said...

Rusty Wallace can be considered new to NASCAR commentary this season. We all knew he was signed to be an analyst and prepared by working with the IRL. But he just began his NASCAR TV career with ESPN this season.

Anonymous said...

come on people.

lay off Rusty.

he's the best salesman MRN has ;-)

Anonymous said...


MOORESVILLE, NC (October 17, 2007)—Several false reports on internet blog sites earlier today reported that ESPN planned to replace Rusty Wallace, the network’s Lead Auto Racing Analyst, in the booth for its upcoming NASCAR broadcasts. ESPN’s response to such reports was nothing less than short and clear. Norby Williamson, ESPN’s Executive Vice President, Studio and Remote Production stated on Wednesday,

“Rusty Wallace is our guy. We have a long-term contract with him. He’s the voice of NASCAR on ESPN.”

Noted Wallace, “I was nothing less than shocked when my PR staff called me and said that they had been asked about this nonsense. Nearly all of the feedback I’ve gotten from key people in our industry, whether it’s fans, network executives, leaders at NASCAR, team owners, drivers and even other broadcasters, has been nothing but positive and encouraging,” Rusty continued, “As soon as ESPN executives heard about this rumor, my phone started ringing. They all thought that this was just as ridiculous as I did. The original source of all of this was just a fan blog site, nothing more; it’s incredible that so many people took it seriously. I have a long-term agreement to be ESPN’s Lead Auto Racing Analyst and I’m excited about working with everyone at the network for years to come.”

haus20 said...

I am with those that believe there is something more to this story...if you read between the lines of the EPSN statement, there will be no changes for the remainder of this year, but they did not rule out 2008. Rusty may be their guy, but in 2008 it may be in a different role...such as in the ESPN pit box. He can still be "the voice of NASCAR" from there. I do not think he will be in the booth in 2008.

I think Rusty could be an asset to a broadcast team; just not as a booth analyst.

Bring on AB DJ and AP...Let Dr. Punch do Cup pit road and Nascar Now. Use Mike Massaro here and there as host of Nascar Now as well. Then, Nascar Now could be on site at least for all of the ESPN Cup races.

As for anonymous @ 7:31pm who won't be back because this site "has gone down the tubes." weren't here much any way or you would know what this site is all about...adios

Matt said...

Notice Rusty said he is "ESPN'S Lead AUTO RACING Analyst." He didn't say NASCAR. Perhaps ESPN will send him back to the IRL to hone his skills before allowing him back on NASCAR coverage?

Anonymous said...

With that logic, Matt, ESPN doesn't state he is "ESPN's Leading IRL Analyst" either. I think it is safe to say that his title encompasses all of auto racing. Quit grasping at straws.

David said...

Call overheard at Rusty's PR firm..

Rusty Wallace, Joe Theisman line 1..

Anonymous said...

To bad ESPN want to stick with Rusty, the man is the most biased commentator out there. The man is so jealous of Jeff Gordon, I guess he couldn't beat him on the track so now he has to bash him from the broadcasting booth.

Anonymous said...

I believe "The Daly Planet" offically "Jumped The Shark" with the stunt yesterday. JMHO

Anonymous said...

Erik, go head and log on under your name. It's okay, we know you're here.

Anonymous said...

Your site has gone down the tubes, I will no longer be visiting. Im very sorry John.

Anonymous said...

If these "Internet fan blogs" are so ridiculous and Rusty and his people can't believe any of us dolts bother reading them, why even respond on your official website, Rusty? (With a photo of Norby Williamson included, to boot). Wouldn't it have made sense to just ignore the "fan blog site, nothing more" or let the Jayski denial suffice so the buzz would die down?

This reminds me of that whole Ray Evernham/Erin Crocker deal: deny, deny, deny the information posted on a "fan blog site" until they admit that it was actually true... a year and a half later.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

"This reminds me of that whole Ray Evernham/Erin Crocker deal: deny, deny, deny the information posted on a "fan blog site" until they admit that it was actually true... a year and a half later."

Blame the spine-less NASCAR media for that one.

Anonymous said...

The media was well aware of the Erin Crocker Ray Evernham scandal, and agreed to let the story lay in the dust until Ray came out and admitted it. In fact it was well known all around the race track that Ray and Erin were caught together in bed. Not all stories make it to press in a timely manner, and this has to do with credentials and threats of being outcasted by powerful little men who cant keep it in their pants. Why do you think TV always shows a camera view looking upward toward drivers and certain owners -- these guys are dwarfs with a napoleon complex. They have money and power, and they can stomp you like a grape. Thats the sad portion of NASCAR most people dont understand.

Desmond said...

I also do not believe the denial. I don't think Rusty will be back in 2008, at least not in NASCAR, and I don't want him back either.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

someone said
Bring on AB DJ and AP...Let Dr. Punch do Cup pit road and Nascar Now. Use Mike Massaro here and there as host of Nascar Now as well. Then, Nascar Now could be on site at least for all of the ESPN Cup races.
Lets see - AB DJ and AP in booth
pit road - now you need four
Dr JP, Dave Burns I guess keep Barbie, who's the fourth?

Anonymous said...

Oh my, I initially thought the "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - MOORESVILLE, NC" thing was just something somebody invented and posted here as satire! I can't believe this is actually an official release posted on Wallace's website! This is my favorite part:

Nearly all of the feedback I’ve gotten from key people in our industry, whether it’s fans, network executives, leaders at NASCAR, team owners, drivers and even other broadcasters, has been nothing but positive and encouraging,”

This guy really takes the cake. Either he's being completely disingenuous, or he's been very well insulated from criticism! Maybe by "key people", he's referring to his legion of "old friends" from his racing days? There's simply NO WAY that an impartial and honest group of observers would "nearly all" be giving him positive feedback. From what I can see, he'd be lucky to get even 20% support!

And what's up with the Norby photo? W-E-I-R-D...

Busch Series Fan! said...

Yeah it's kind of a dorky picture if you ask me.

haus20 said...

Shannon Spake would be the obvious choice for the fourth pit road spot.

Anonymous said...

Shannon Spake is much better as a NASCAR Now reporter than a pit reporter. If they need a female, they should get Lindsay Czarniak. I thought she did a better job than Ralph Shaheen on the TNT coverage.

haus20 said...

I agree, except I believe that Lindsay has other contractual obligations...she has been brought up before.

Anonymous said...

Wonderfull; They should have removed him immediately when he slandered Nascar's best driver; Jeff Gordon.
It was so ridiculious that I think even Dale Jr would have eventually been embarassed.

Anonymous said...

John if this is now a NASCAR News Website, then why do you say in this blog:

"So, here we go. This will be the Rusty Wallace news thread."

Very disappointed in the last few weeks. The Erik and now Rusty Wallace posts are completely false, and somehow you fall for it. You and your culy like following is rediculous. If anyone says something good about ESPN, they are shot down. No wonder so many people (including myself) post anonymous. I am ready for the redicule by members now. Go ahead, hit me with your best shot.

Anonymous said...


Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 9:06PM - I am not really sure what you mean. The Erik column was just a page to allow for comments on a specific post that jumped-out at me. Apparently, a lot of other folks felt the same way.

The Rusty post was an observation on how and why things in "NASCAR Internet Land" are the way they are at present. One story, I comment on it, get an email about it, and suddenly become part of it. Talk about going viral.

This site will continue to be a daily column, mixed with the opportunity for NASCAR fans to become empowered and speak-up about the performance of the NASCAR TV partners this season.

I don't know if you are new to the sport, but when someone like Dale Jarrett says he is retiring, you can look for the other shoe to drop pretty quickly.

Since he has been working on the ESPN TV package, including the dates when he did not make the races, it is clear where he is going to go. The only question is, in what role? All over the Internet, bloggers, fans, and reporters are sitting there with itchy trigger fingers just waiting to type those four little letters...E..S..P..N.

Trust me, this one is not over by a longshot. I hope you do come back and keep an eye on us for the rest of the season, and if there is anything you think I can do better, please drop me an email directly. Thanks.


Anonymous said...

anonymous wrote
Very disappointed in the last few weeks. The Erik and now Rusty Wallace posts are completely false, and somehow you fall for it.
ALl I have to say is "HUH?" Did you not read the blog.

Over at the AOL Fanhouse they are reporting that Rusty Wallace will not be returning to the ESPN/ABC NASCAR package in 2008. The details are sketchy, and I am going to post this page to document the
progression of this story over the next several hours.

AOL fanhouse and about 3 or 4 other blogs reported the story as true. And by the by there is no proof it isn't. ESPN's damage control doesn't count.

Unfortunetly JD was taken in by Erik who is only a troll and not an ESPN employee and he fed that troll big time.

Anonymous said...

I certainly hope Rusty is leaving. My husband yells, "Shut up Rusty" at least 10 times per race broadcast. We are now watching with the mute button on and fast forwarding through Rusty monologues.